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dave obee Manitoba Probate Records

By Dave Obee

A printable version of this document in PDF format is also available.

A set of 33 microfilms - the Manitoba Surrogate Court probate applications - offers information on the deaths of about 230,000 people. It serves as an index to deaths of some Manitoba residents, as well as some non-residents with ties to the province.

Finding a reference is a two-step process. First, search for the name of the deceased person in the index, on microfilms M1266-M1270. Surnames are generally sorted by the first letter, then by the first vowel. If you find your person, make a note of the reference number, then use it to find the person in the applications, on microfilms M1278-M1305. The applications provide the probate application number; the name of the deceased; residence; amount of estate; date of death; name, address and occupation of applicant; nature of application; court district; date when certificate was mailed; and a note of matter certified.

These microfilms are available at the Archives of Manitoba in Winnipeg as well as other libraries such as the Alberta Genealogical Society in Edmonton and the Victoria Genealogical Society in Victoria.

Copies of probate files are available from the Archives of Manitoba. Ask for a copy of the full file, or just the key documents if you prefer. Provide the name of the deceased, the date the certificate was mailed, the court district, and any number that appears in the final column, which is marked "note of matter certified." DO NOT use the probate application number.

E-mail: Archives of Manitoba
Regular mail: Archives of Manitoba, 200 Vaughan Street, Winnipeg R3C 1T5
Telephone: 204-945-3971
Fax: 204-948-2672

You will not find a probate reference for everyone! Also, if the deceased is listed in the first set, but not the second, that's a problem with the original documents. Some of the application books were lost prior to the microfilming.

Other sources of information:

Use the death dates provided in the index to check for obituaries in the Winnipeg Free Press, available on microfilm at most university libraries in Western Canada.

Use locality information to check for local histories.

Look in old directories as well. The Legislative Library in Winnipeg has had an extensive microfilming program. Directories are also found in two microfiche collections, CIHM and Peel. For a guide to coverage, check Dave Obee's book Western Canadian Directories on Microfiche and Microfilm.

The Archives of Manitoba has an extensive collection of microfilmed material. Information is on the Archives website.

Guide to the Surrogate Court microfilms

Part One - Accession GR 3728 - Index
Reel M1266 - 1871 - 1930 (A-L); 1871- 1930 (M-Z); January 1931- June 1939
Reel M1267 - June 1939 - January 1945; January 1945 - April 1949; April 1949 - September 1953; September 1953 - June 1957; July 1957 - January 1965 A-Fy
Reel M1268 - July 1957 - January 1965 Ga-Z; February 1965- December 1972 A-Mc
Reel M1269 - February 1965- December 1972 McA-Z; January 1973 - December 1978
Reel M1270 - January 1979 - December 1982; January 1983 - July 1984

Part Two - Accession GR 3750 - application list
Reel M1278 - Application Numbers 1-9370 -- February 1884 - August 1907
Reel M1279 - Application Numbers 9371-18957 -- August 1907 - March 1917
Reel M1280 - Application Numbers 18958-28567 -- March 1917 - June 1922
Reel M1281 - Application Numbers 28568-38655 -- June 1922 - May 1929
Reel M1282 - Application Numbers 38657-47533 -- May 1929 - June 1935
Reel M1283 - Application Numbers 47534-54676 -- June 1925 - November 1939
Reel M1284 - Application Numbers 54677-61915 -- November 1939 - June 1943
Reel M1285 - Application Numbers 61916-72424 -- June 1943 - August 1946
Reel M1286 - Application Numbers 72425-90002 -- August 1946 - July 1949
Reel M1287 - Application Numbers 90003-98493 -- July 1949 - May 1952
Reel M1288 - Application Numbers 98494-106946 -- May 1952 - January 1955
Reel M1289 - Application Numbers 106947-116423 -- January 1955 - September 1957
Reel M1290 - Application Numbers 116424-125175 -- September 1957 - February 1960
Reel M1291 - Application Numbers 125176-133740 -- February 1960 - July 1962
Reel M1292 - Application Numbers 133741-141178 -- July 1962 - July 1964
Reel M1293 - Application Numbers 141179-148584 -- July 1964 - May 1966
Reel M1294 - Application Numbers 148585-156186 -- May 1966 - February 1968
Reel M1295 - Application Numbers 156187-163670 -- February 1968 - January 1970
Reel M1296 - Application Numbers 163671-171059 -- January 1970 - June 1971
Reel M1297 - Application Numbers 171060-178449 -- June 1971 - September 1973
Reel M1298 - Application Numbers 178450-185893 -- September 1973 - January 1975
Reel M1299 - Application Numbers 185894-193283 -- January 1975 - January 1977
Reel M1300 - Application Numbers 193284-200638 -- January 1977 - July 1978
Reel M1301 - Application Numbers 200639-208029 -- July 1978 - January 1980
Reel M1302 - Application Numbers 208030-211674 -- January 1980 - October 1980
Reel M1303 - Application Numbers 211675-219081 -- October 1980 - April 1982
Reel M1304 - Application Numbers 219082-226505 -- April 1982 - October 1983
Reel M1305 - Application Numbers 226506-232674 -- October 1983 - November 1984
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