Research – Navies and naval matters


Guide to Sources for Research into the Royal Canadian Navy

The intent of this guide is to provide a list of authoritative reference materials to introduce researchers to the history of Canada’s Navy. Since it would be impracticable to include the full list of several hundred titles (which continues to grow), the emphasis is on official histories and other government publications, including the proceedings of sponsored conferences directly pertaining to the subject of Canadian naval history. It does, however, recognize as “standard references” a number of non-governmental publications which, while not officially sanctioned, are sources considered to be both thoroughly researched and reliable for use in the study of Canada’s naval history and heritage.

The majority of these volumes are held in the NMA Collections, and indeed duplicates of many are available for purchase. The links [to follow] are to the original publication data.

  1. – Official Histories
  2. – Authorised Accounts
  3. – Commemorative Histories
  4. – Conference Proceedings & Essay Collections
  5. – Standard references (non-government publications)
  6. – Ship Histories (to be developed)
  7. – Canadian Defence Quarterly
  8. – On-line Collections
  9. – Other Titles Referring to the RCN

This is currently (May 2020) a work in progess, to rationalise, facilitate and expand our existing page at the Naval Marine Archive. Some pages are very recent, some date back twenty years and may or may not have been reviewed and/or edited recently; we appreciate any suggestions for improvements.


Naval Marine ArchiveThe Canadian Collection
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Telephone: 1 613 476 1177
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Naval Marine Archive
The Canadian Collection

Revised: 28 January 2021