Archives / Local History

2pm to 5pm
(Hours may change without notice)

Have a research request? Use this form and submit today!

Archives Mandate

  • to preserve the documentary heritage of Cochrane for the benefit of present and future generations;
  • to be a source of enduring knowledge accessible to all, contributing to the cultural, social and economic advancement of Cochrane; 
  • to serve as the continuing memory of local history of the area.

Indexes of Birth, Marriage, Death and Estate Notices

The Cochrane Public Library Archives Staff & Volunteers have been working diligently over the past several years to compile a comprehensive index of all births, marriages, deaths, and memorials and estate notices from the Cochrane Northland Post, Cochrane Times, and Cochrane Times-Post Newspapers from the years 1910 to 2013. The index is now available for reference to the public.

DISCLAIMER: It is important to note that the dates listed in this index are the newspaper dates, and not the actual dates of particular events. Once a name and date is found, you can either book an appointment to visit the Archives Room at the library with a staff member or, if you are unable to visit, send us an email to to request that the research be done for you.

The notices can either be photographed, scanned or photocopied and sent to you by email or regular mail. Fees are 25 cents per page if printed and a shipping fee if mailed. You may also elect to make a monetary donation towards the preservation of the library archives if desired.

Click on the letter of your choice to search a family surname.


Our Collection & Resources

The following are some of the records contained in the Cochrane Public Library’s Archives collection:
  • Biographies (local individuals)
  • Business Directories
  • Cemetery Transcripts
  • High School Year Books
  • Index of births, marriages & deaths of newspapers
  • Index of material in Archives Room
  • Microfilms and microfiches of local newspaper
  • Newspapers (local)
  • Photographs
  • Rare Book Collection
  • Souvenir Booklets & Programmes
  • Telephone Directories
  • Various books on local history
  • Records
  • Cassettes
  • CD’s
  • VHS
  • DVD’s
ancestry library edition

Ancestry Library Edition is an online resource funded by the province’s 15 million dollar Investment in Public Libraries

Ancestry Library Edition Database (Proquest) In Library Use ONLY. This database provides historical coverage for Canada, the United States and the United Kingdom. It includes census, vital, church, court and immigration records as well as WWI Draft Registration Cards, Federal Slave Narratives, and a strong Civil War Collection. Includes images, indexes, and historical maps. Click on the logo above to access the database from the library.

Cochrane Public Library Archives Building Photos - Online!

Have a look at some of the photos which are available now online!

Archive Photos

We will continue to upload images as time permits. 

History of the Genealogy Group

The Cochrane Genealogy Group was formed in 1993 and has, since that time, held regular meetings at the library. Working with the library’s archived collection, the group has responded to requests received by the library for information contained in the collection. In addition to conducting historical information searches the group has also recorded and maintained records pertaining to the community of Cochrane and surrounding area. Over the years the Genealogy Group has transcribed the cemeteries in Cochrane, Clute, Genier, and Frederickhouse. Inscriptions on every tombstone in each of these cemeteries have been recorded and the names of the deceased have been indexed. The group has also indexed all the local newspapers from 1910 to the present for births, marriages, and, deaths. The group has assumed responsibility for the ongoing effort of binding the archived newspapers. The Genealogy Group has created an archives file index and is currently conducting a comprehensive inventory of the complete archives collection. The library board has purchased a membership for the library in the Ontario Genealogical Society and in so doing have become a part of the effort to encourage the research of family history and the preservation and expansion of family history resources for future generations. The benefits, such as receiving the OGS quarterly journal Families, the quarterly newsletter Newsleaf, and eight issues of e-NewsLeaf per year will be great addition to the library and a great resource for its patrons. In 2005 the Cochrane Genealogy Group were presented with a Certificate of Achievement from the Ontario Heritage Trust in appreciation of the group’s many volunteer hours working to identify, preserve, protect and promote Ontario’s rich heritage. 

The group has disassembled since 2012 and now the library has a permanent staff member maintaining the archives and organizing volunteers.

(Pictured here is Ardis Proulx-Chedore with the library's 100th year display in 2017)


A part of the Cochrane Public Library’s mandate is to collect material related to all aspects of the history of our community and surrounding areas. Archived material is a vital aspect of our society as they are pieces of history that can tell a story and place events in context. These cultural and heritage documents form a portal to our past making history come alive, they honour the integrity of the people and events that have been instrumental to the evolution of our community. Through their collection and with proper care, archived materials become pieces of history preserved for future generations to enjoy and explore.

Help us to fill in the gaps in our community’s history by donating to your library’s collection. Don’t let valuable pieces of our heritage be sold at yard sales, lost, or thrown away. If you have old photographs, letters, maps, or additional documentation, help us to preserve these valuable records and make them available to the community, and to future generations, by donating them to the your library’s archives.

The next time you clean out your attic or are preparing for a yard sale ask yourself if these records might be of value to the library archives before discarding them.

Library staff will be pleased to accept archive donations and have prepared a special donation form to ensure your records are tracked and cared for. Your name will be recorded as the donor and you also become part of our history. You may wish to print the donation form from this site or pick one up at the library’s front desk. We would really like to hear from you.

Should you have a donation, you can print this form to accompany your donation.


Local History Policy

The Cochrane Public Library maintains a special collection in order to conserve local history and to provide access to unique materials that help researchers and the public better understand our past.

The purpose of the Local History | Genealogy Policy is to guide staff in making decisions about the selection, management and preservation of a specific collection of library materials relating to the history of Cochrane and its surrounding area.

The Library’s Local History resources are comprised of various formats including electronic digitized files and databases.

Print Collections
Staff under the supervision of the CEO/Chief Librarian or designate will be responsible for collecting and organizing materials for the local history collection. 
The Cochrane Public Library will collect materials pertaining to the history of Cochrane and its surrounding areas. Materials include originals and reproductions. Emphasis is given to the acquisition of those items which will contribute to the knowledge of the social, civic, religious, economic and cultural life, both past and present. 

The Archives holds records in all formats, including textual records (correspondence, reports, minutes, etc.), audiovisual records (photographs, audio and video recordings), architectural drawings, maps, digital records, and artwork. Special collections contain publications including rare books, theses, dissertations, faculty publications, as well as books and pamphlets relating to local history and the environment.

Items to be acquired include:

  • works and primary source material documenting local history and genealogy
  • local research
  • oral histories
  • cemetery records
  • municipal records
  • photographs and negatives
  • copies of photographs
  • monographs
  • historical atlases and maps
  • papers
  • brochures, pamphlets and programs of events
  • personal papers, including correspondence and family bibles (related to the early settlement of the community)
  • Writings of local authors that are not about Cochrane or the surrounding area are subject to the CPL Collection Development Policy.

The Library will subscribe to databases relevant to local history and genealogy research.

The Library will work alone or in partnership with others to undertake the digitization of local history materials in order to provide the public with greater access to local history information.

Collections – Digital
The Cochrane Public Library digital collections are available through our website:
A policy is under review for digital collections.

Local history materials may be used in the Library only and will not circulate.
In special situations, a short-term loan may be arranged with the approval of the CEO/Chief Librarian. 

Archives Jurisdiction

The Town of Cochrane

  • Clute
  • Gardiner
  • Norembega
  • Brower Township
  • Detour
  • Hunta
  • Driftwood
  • Tunis
  • New Post
  • Abitibi
  • Abitibi Canyon
  • Island Falls
  • Moosonee
  • Moose Factory
  • James Bay Coast
  • Attawapiskat
  • Otter Rapids
  • Fredrickhouse
  • Dunns Lake
  • Fournier Township

Areas not covered by the Cochrane Public Library:

  • Timmins
  • Iroquois Falls
  • Smooth Rock Falls
  • Moonbeam
  • Kapuskasing
  • Quebec
  • Hearst
  • New Liskeard