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Description found in Archives

Provincial Secretary's Office, Correspondence. Canada East [textual record, philatelic record]. 

Date(s)

1763-1885

Place of creation

Québec (Province)

75.22 m of textual records.
96 postal covers.

Scope and content

Documents received in the office of the Provincial Secretary and Registrar for Canada East between 1841 and 1867 -- be they petitions, letters, reports or returns -- were entered in a numbered registry system, together with a number of files antedating 1841 brought forward for some purpose. These numbered files form series RG 4 C 1. A variety of incoming items of 1841-1867 were not numbered and have come to form the series RG 4 C 4, together with what appear to be reference copies of documents dating from 1838 to 1885. Some correspondence was segregated and recorded in specialized registers or letterbooks, by subject such as those devoted to municipal affairs (see RG 4, B 36). The texts of replies to this inward correspondence were recorded in the letterbooks forming series RG 4 C 2, together with certain letterbooks of the Civil and the Provincial Secretary in Quebec and Lower Canada. The drafts of this outgoing correspondence may be found attached to the incoming items, but a substantial proportion of the drafts were filed separately and are now found as series RG 4 C 3. The fonds also consists of postal covers for the period from 1841 to 1854 which were in most cases mailed from Quebec City, Montreal and villages in Canada East.

Textual records
90: Open
Records in series C 1 and C 2 which have
been microfilmed are withdrawn from circulation as a protective conservation measure. Researchers must use the microfilm for consultation and reproduction purposes. Only photographic copies may be made of documents written on parchment.
Philatelic records
90: Open
Archival reference no.
Former archival reference no.

Textual records The shelf lists in the Guide for RG 4 identify the reel numbers for the portions which have been filmed and provide a listing of the records to the volume title level. For the drafts and the unnumbered correspondence, there is no more detailed description. As the shelf list indicates, most letterbooks contain an index. 90 (Paper)

Textual records The finding aid provides a descriptive listing for the correspondence in volumes 2-9 of series RG 4 B 36. Some volumes contain an index or table of contents, as noted in the shelf list. Arrangement of some records by geographic area facilitates access. MSS0759 90 (Electronic)
http://data2.archives.ca/pdf/pdf001/p000001298.pdf

Textual records Until September 1989, a series of Registers and Indexes, prepared in the Provincial Secretary's Office, was shelved as Finding Aids 993 (serving series RG 4 C 1 and C 2) and 994 (serving series RG 4 C 2). Subject and nominal entries in the Index volumes provide access to the corresponding Register volumes for each year, while the Registers identify the author, date, subject and fate of each file. For 1843-1863, the Indexes to the letterbooks are bound with those for the numbered files. MSS0993 90 (Paper)

Textual records The indexes for the letterbooks of 1863-1866 are bound separately, while the indexes for the pre-1841 letterbooks are found within the books themselves. An explanation of how these contemporary indexes and registers function and how to trace from the incoming to the outgoing correspondence, or vice-versa, prefaces the shelf lists and was included on each reel of microfilm. 90 (Paper)

Textual records Until September 1989, a series of Registers and Indexes, prepared in the Provincial Secretary's Office, was shelved as Finding Aids 993 (serving series RG 4 C 1 and C 2) and 994 (serving series RG 4 C 2). Subject and nominal entries in the Index volumes provide access to the corresponding Register volumes for each year, while the Registers identify the author, date, subject and fate of each file. For 1843-1863, the Indexes to the letterbooks are bound with those for the numbered files. MSS0994 90 (Paper)

Philatelic record The finding aid is listed at the series level. 90 (Electronic)

Biography / Administrative history

The responsibilities of the Provincial Secretary and Registrar were broad and varied. That variety can be understood by examination of the subject headings in the Indexes to the Registers. The Secretary's correspondence files reflect the full spectrum of these responsibilities, as well as the manner in which the Provincial Secretary came to replace the Civil Secretary as the primary focus of communication in the government and the channel through which much correspondence was redirected to the appropriate government department or agency. Correspondence of the Registrar's function was kept separate and has generally been preserved in RG 68.

Additional information

Many series contain supporting documents antedating the office in which they were accumulated and preserved. Some documents of later date have also come to be preserved with these series. Note that the extent of these series is subject to change, as a result of reorganizations which transfer records into or out of them.

Arrangement note
The original arrangement of the records, which is essentially chronological within each series -- has been preserved or reconstructed wherever possible. Many blocks of files on special subjects have been reintegrated into C 1 from the B series of RG 4. Not all documents which entered the registry system have survived in their expected locations. Many files were brought forward and are now found with related files of later date. Other files were forwarded to appropriate offices for action and incorporated into other registry systems. The relationship between records of the Secretary's function, found in RG 4, and those of the Registrar's function, sometimes found in RG 68, is under investigation.

Availability of other formats note
Microfilming of the Registers and Indexes for series C 1 was completed in 1975. Microfilming of files in series C 1 was begun in 1977 and completed in 1994. The files for 1839 to 1867, together with the Registers and their Indexes are available on microfilm. Letterbooks in series C 2 were microfilmed in 1977-1978.

Private

Other system control no.