Land grants to veterans

There is a long history in Canada of granting land to military veterans. Land records relating to veterans date to the colonial period. They usually include information about the person and their military service.

On this page

Before you start

Gather information such as:

  • name
  • approximate year of birth
  • place or province where the person lived
  • military campaign or war they served in

Places to look

You can find records of land grants to veterans in several collections.

Library and Archives Canada (LAC) has land records relating to veterans of the War of 1812 and the South African War. You can search them in these databases:

Dominion Lands Branch

Click on the titles below for each sub-series description to see the scope and content, links to finding aids and lower level descriptions.

You can search some of the files by name.

  • Go to Collection Search
  • Click on Advanced Search
  • Select Collections and Fonds database
  • In This exact phrase enter RG15
  • In All these words enter a person’s name
  • In Any of these words enter land, scrip, grantee, warrant

Department of Indian Affairs

The Department of Indian Affairs administered soldier settlement programs for Indigenous veterans under the provisions of the Indian (Soldier Settlement) Act of 1927. You can find the files in Record Group 10 (RG10). Some files relate to one person and other files include groups of veterans.

The files contain information about the veteran such as:

  • band membership
  • military service number, dates of enlistment and discharge
  • age and marital status
  • if married, name of wife and ages of children
  • employment history and farming experience
  • land location and details

To search for a file:

  • Go to Collection Search
  • Click on Advanced Search
  • Select Collections and Fonds database.
  • In This exact phrase enter "RG10"
  • In All these words enter the word “soldier”. Also enter a person’s name or the name of an agency, reserve or band

Here are two examples to illustrate the types of files you might find:

Other records

Soldier Settlement Board

The Soldier Settlement Act (1917, 1919) and the Veterans' Land Act (1942) allowed veterans of the First and Second World Wars to purchase land with the help of government loans. It also provided funds for livestock and equipment.

LAC does not hold copies of the Soldier Settlement Board (SSB) files. We do have microfilm copies of the index cards. The cards are arranged by name and include the veteran’s SSB file number.

  • First World War: Veterans claim cards,1914-1924 (RG38-E-1-b)
    • The description of that sub-series includes the link to the finding aid, which shows the content of the microfilm. Once you know the microfilm number you need, click on the link to the digitized microfilm.
  • Second World War: Veterans' account card indexes 1956-1980
    • The description of that sub-series includes a link to the finding aid, which shows the content of the microfilm. The microfilm is not digitized.

Surviving records of the SSB for First and Second World War veterans are in the custody of Veterans Affairs Canada. You should submit requests for records on that department’s Access to Information and Privacy form.

Access the records

Digitized records

If you find a record of interest, there may be a digital image. Some of these are available through Collection Search. Others, particularly digitized microforms, are available through Héritage.

Non-digitized records

For records that are not digitized, you'll need to see them in person. If you can't visit us in person, you can order copies or hire a researcher.

Restricted material

References in Collection Search show if a record is open (access code 90) or restricted (access code 32). To find the access code in an item description, click on Ordering and Viewing Options, then Conditions of access.

If the item is restricted, use the ATIP tool to request a copy.

Related resources

To find databases and other resources for researching land and military records: