Founded by the Association of the Acadian Museum of PEI in 1985, the Acadian Research Centre of Prince Edward Island was created to acquire and preserve documents on the history and culture of Island Acadians and make them available to researchers.

The Centre first inherited numerous documents which had been collected by the Acadian Museum since it opened in 1964. Since 1985, it acquires various archival fonds donated by individuals or organizations from the Island Acadian community. The Centre holds over 230 archival fonds containing numerous textual, photographic, and audio-visual documents.

Among these archival fonds are those from organizations such as the Société Saint-Thomas-d’Aquin, the Centre culturel Port-Lajoie in Charlottetown, the Egmont Bay and Mont Carmel Agricultural Exhibition, and the Acadian Historical Society of Prince Edward Island. Among the personal archives, there are those of individuals such as J. Edmond Arsenault, Sister Antoinette DesRoches, Ulric (Prospector Spud) Arsenault, and Edgar Gallant.

Genealogical resources are an important part of the Acadian Research Centre. These include a copy of the birth, marriage, and burial records from Island parishes with large Acadian populations. The Centre has created several research tools based on these parish registers, censuses, and other resources to make genealogical research easier. These include a database of the Acadian families of Prince Edward Island.

The Acadian Research Centre’s library includes a collection of almost every publication relating to the Acadian community on Prince Edward Island. As well, it houses numerous books on Acadian history, heritage, and culture in general, including a number of genealogy publications.

The Centre has a major collection of old and recent photos, including an impressive collection of photos and negatives from 1975 to 2001 taken by the weekly newspaper La Voix acadienne.

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Directors of the The Acadian Research Centre of Prince Edward Island

Georges Arsenault (1985 – 1986)
Murielle Arsenault (1986 – 1987)
Cécile Gallant (1988 – 2003)
Jean Bernard (2003 – 2007)
Noëlla Richard (2008 – 2012)
Cécile Gallant (2012 – )

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Website of the The Acadian Research Centre of Prince Edward Island : acadieipe.ca

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Documents of all Kinds

This montage illustrates the diversity of documents to be found at the Acadian Research Centre of Prince Edward Island.

(Source: Georges Arsenault)

Genealogical Documentation

The Acadian Research Centre of Prince Edward Island makes available to researchers very useful research tools on the genealogy of Island Acadians.

(Source: Georges Arsenault)

In the Vault

The fire-proof vault of the Acadian Research Centre of Prince Edward Island is packed with boxes of precious documents such as the one which archivist Jean Bernard is holding.

(Source: Musée acadien de l’Î.-P.-É.)

An Archival Project

In 1989, thanks to a grant from the Canadian Council of Archives, the Acadian Research Centre of Prince Edward Island was able to hire a few project employees to catalogue archival documents donated to the Centre and to produce summary lists. The picture was taken at a training workshop with Ronnie-Gilles LeBlanc, archivist at the Université de Moncton’s Acadian Study Centre. From l. to r.: Gloria Cormier, Hélène Gagné Bernard, Edna MacKinnon (project employees), Ronnie-Gilles LeBlanc, and Cécile Gallant, director of the Centre.

(Source: La Voix acadienne)

Cataloguing Documents

A great many documents were entrusted to the Acadian Research Centre of Prince Edward Island for their preservation and to make them available to researchers. The Centre benefited from several federal grants to help catalogue those documents. In 1994-1995, Claire DesRoches (left) and Edna MacKinnon were hired to do this meticulous work.

(Source: La Voix acadienne)

The Buote Family Documents

On October 10, 2003, Reg Porter, from Belle River, donated to the Acadian Research Centre of Prince Edward Island a collection of various documents having belonged to Gilbert and François-Joseph Buote, from Tignish, founders of the newspaper L’Impartial published from 1893 to 1915. From left to right: Jean Bernard, Director of the Acadian Research Centre, Reg Porter, and Cécile Gallant, Director of the Acadian Museum.

(Source: Musée acadien de l’Î.-P.-É.)

How to Preserve Photos

In 2009, Noëlla Richard, the director of the Acadian Research Centre of Prince Edward Island, gave a workshop on the preservation of photos.

(Source: La Voix acadienne)

Searching for Their Identity

Four students from Evangeline School are seen working on their family tree at the Acadian Research Centre of Prince Edward Island, 1989. From left to right: Diane Arsenault, Gloria Cormier (assistant genealogist), Debbie Hitchcock, Tracy Arsenault, and Sharon Muirhead.

(Source: Musée acadien de l’Î.-P.-É.)

The volunteers

Alice Richard (left) and Hermine Gallant are two of the faithful volunteers at the Acadian Research Centre of Prince Edward Island. Their work consists mainly of transcribing genealogical information from the parish registers. They also provide valuable services to individuals doing genealogical research

(Source: Georges Arsenault)

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