2 Migration and Methodology

What methods do scholars use to study migration history? What are the possibilities and the limits of the different types of sources they use?

Lisa Chilton and Yukari Takai, “East Coast, West Coast: Using Government Files to Study Immigration History.” Histoire sociale/Social history 48, no. 96 (2015): 7-23.

Marlene Epp, “Eating Across Borders: Reading Immigrant Cookbooks.” Histoire sociale/Social history 48, no. 96 (2015): 45-65.

Ryan C. Eyford, ““Close together, though miles and miles apart”: Family, Distance, and Emotion in the Letters of the Taylor Sisters, 1881-1921.” Histoire sociale/Social history 48, no. 96 (2015): 67-86.


Frenette, Gendreau, Scardellato, Willis, « L’expérience migratoire et la création d’un espace épistolaire : une étude de cas », dans Andrée Courtemanche et Martin Pâquet, dirs., Prendre la route : L’expérience migratoire en Europe et en Amérique du Nord du XIVe au XXe siècle (Hull : Vents d’Ouest, 2001) 173-93.

Alexander Freund, Oral History and Ethnic History (Canadian Historical Association, 2014).


Alexander Freund, L’Histoire orale et l’histoire des groupes ethniques (Société historique du Canada, 2014).

Dirk Hoerder, “Historians and Their Data: The Complex Shift from Nation-State Approaches to the Study of People’s Transcultural Lives.” Journal of American Ethnic History 25.4 (2006): 85-96.

Royden Loewen, “Competing Cosmologies: Reading Migration and Identity in an Ethno-religious Newspaper.” Histoire sociale/Social history 48, no. 96 (2015): 87-105.


Library and Archives Canada has several useful digitized databases and document collections allowing students to examine original immigration documents. These include databases of ship arrivals, passenger lists, migrant porters and domestics, Chinese migrants, and naturalization documents. Visit them here.

La Bibliothèque et Archives Canada possède une vaste collection de sources historiques numérisées sur l’immigration, dont des bases de données d’immigrants pour le Canada, de navires, de porteurs et domestiques, de migrants Chinois, et de dossiers de naturalisation.

Visitez leur site ici.

Pier21/Quai21 https://pier21.ca/

https://masscapture.ca, a collection of Chinese head tax certificates

The Portuguese Canadian History Project https://pchp-phlc.ca/

The Greek Canadian History Project http://archives.library.yorku.ca/gchp/

The Coptic Canadian History Project https://thecchp.com/about/

The Italian-Canadian Archives Project https://icap.ca/


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Canadian Immigration History Syllabus Copyright © 2019 by Laura Madokoro; Daniel Ross; Franca Iacovetta; Marlene Epp; Lisa Chilton; Gilberto Fernandes; Jordan Stanger-Ross; Michael Akladios; Paul-Étienne Rainville; and Sylvie Taschereau is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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