When should Nova Scotia, Canada be used instead of Nova Scotia Colony?

+6 votes

Joshua Upham Slocomb was recently featured as the profile of the week.  His profile states that he was born in 1844 in Nova Scotia.  I beame curious as to why it was not listed as Nova Scotia, Canada.  With a little more research I learned that Nova Scotia was a British Colony until 1867 and after that date was Nova Scotia, Canada.  So should Slocomb be born ib Nova Scotia Colony as well as Nova Scotia Notable William Grant Stairs (1863 - 1892) and only those born in Nova Scotia after 1867 be listed as being born in Nova Scotia, Canada?

WikiTree profile: Joshua Slocum
in Genealogy Help by Norm Lindquist G2G6 Mach 5 (51.8k points)
Thank you for raising this Norm! I've corrected the category for Cap'n Slocum

1 Answer

+6 votes
Best answer
Yes, that's correct.
by Greg Slade G2G6 Pilot (370k points)
selected by Norm Lindquist
So Slocomb should be listed as being born in Nova Scotia Colony.
Right. Some people write "Nova Scotia Colony", others write "Colony of Nova Scotia", and some just put "Nova Scotia". I haven't been able to determine the legal name of the colony, so I don't fuss over which people put, as long as it's not "Nova Scotia, Canada" for people born before July 1, 1867.

Norm, the relevant "Nova Scotia Colony" categories, i.e. after 1713 and before 1867, are listed here, along with a little bit of historic detail.


That link was included in my original question.  I also changed a 1967 to 1867 while I was there.
Oh right! Sorry, I didn't click through the link in your question.

And thanks for the date edit.

Brad - the section on the counties is inaccurate - there are 18 counties in present day Nova Scotia but that was not the case, especially when it was a colony. Perhaps instead of that paragraph a link to the following site should be provided: https://novascotia.ca/dma/government/county-boundary.asp

Hi Eugene,

You may not be aware that in 1879, half of the counties of Nova Scotia were dissolved and are not used any more.  For example, my hometown used to be in Shelburne County, but is now in Shelburne District - there is no county outside of Stats Can Census.

This Wikipedia article provides the correct information - there is also incorrect information on Wikipedia. 

We're in the process of cleaning up the Atlantic Canada Categories right now, including Nova Scotia.  I've noted this thread, and we'll consider your suggestion for sure.

Sorry, its still early in the morning here.  I have a better link to the Province of Nova Scotia information on the current system of municipal government that is in place.  This is guiding our approach:

Hi Laurie, I live in Nova Scotia and I work for the provincial government. I can assure you that regardless of what Wikipedia says Nova Scotia still has eighteen counties. Shelburne county does still exist. Municipalities and Counties are two seperate things and should not be confused. For instance, Digby County is subdivided into the Municipality of Claire, the Municipality of Digby and the Town of Digby - three municipal units all in the county of Digby.

I can personally attest that Hants County still exists.

:) I'm glad someone is brave enough to tackle historical counties. The boundaries and names shifted so often, I threw my hands in the air and gave up years ago. I feel like often, they're going to make things confusing rather than help.

My craven solution has been to not use counties at all, unless there's a really good reason to. (Certainly, court records and other administrative documents at the county level qualify as good reasons):

"Following the Seven Years' War, Cape Breton Island was formally annexed to Nova Scotia. For a time it formed part of Halifax County.

"The boundaries of Halifax County were modified in 1822. That part of St. Mary's Township (established in 1818) which had been in Halifax County was annexed to and included within Sydney County.

"The dividing line between the Districts of Halifax and Colchester was confirmed and established on May 3, 1828. In 1835, Halifax County was divided and the Counties of Colchester and Pictou County were created out of parts of what had previously been Halifax County. Eventually in 1880 the boundary between the Counties of Halifax and Colchester was fixed."

I hear you, Eugene, and would like to contact you offline, if I may. We can bring it back to G2G if and when a broader discussion is needed.  I already have Brad's email, but I'll send you a private message.

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