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Genealogy Guide: Canada

Brief History


The earliest Jewish community in Canada was established in 1759, when Jews were first officially permitted to reside in the country. The first congregation was founded in 1768 in Montreal. Jewish settlement was mainly confined to Montreal until the 1840’s, when Jewish settlers slowly began to spread throughout the country. Jewish immigration increased around the turn of the 20th century, as it did in the United States. Today, Jews make up approximately 1.2% of Canada’s population.