Diocesan Archives

Although the Chancellor has canonical responsibility for the archives, particularly for the documentation of current activities and the safe keeping of the “Acts of the Curia” (Canon 482.1), it is the Archivist who provides the in-depth examination of the total archival content.

The Diocesan Archivist must have a thorough understanding of what comprises the archives, namely documents and writings concerning both the spiritual and the temporal affairs of the diocese. He must also maintain a synopsis of each document.

Archive Contents

  • Papers of the twelve bishops who have served this diocese since it was founded in 1829, as well as papers pertaining to the years when Prince Edward Island was part of the Diocese of Quebec.
  • Either paper or microfilm copies of the sacramental registers from all of the parishes.
  • Papers specific to former diocesan institutions such as:
    • St. Andrew’s College
    • St. Vincent’s Orphanage
    • The Charlottetown Hospital
    • St. Dunstan’s High School/College/University
  • Many other documents of historical value are also kept in our archives and are in the process of being catalogued. Some examples are:
  • the Parish History of many of our parishes
  • a major two volume history of The Catholic Church on Prince Edward Island
  • a history of St. Dunstan’s College/University
  • a couple of histories of the Scottish settlers of P.E.I.
  • several histories of the Acadians of P.E.I.
  • a history of priests and bishops who served on P.E.I. from 1829 to 1996
  • a biography of Father Georges Antoine Belcourt
  • a biography of Father A.E. Burke
  • a booklet on the two brothers,Bishos Henry and Louis O’Leary


  • It Happened in Iona by Fr. Art O’Shea (1990). A chronicle of life in a small rural parish where church and the people’s faith easily intertwined with the cycles of nature and living from the land. 122 pages. Available from the author,
  • A. E. Burke by Fr. Art O’Shea (1993). A concise biography of one of our diocesan priests of long ago. Among his many good works he was founder of the Catholic Church Extension Society of Canada in 1908. 92 pages. Available from the author.
  • The O’Learys Two by Fr. Art O’Shea (1995). A brief sketch of two brother bishops of Charlottetown: Henry, 1913-1920 and Louis, 1920-1930. 47 pages. Available from the author.
  • Priests and Bishops in the Diocese of Charlottetown, 1829-1996 by Fr. Art O’Shea. Short biographies of 268 (all deceased) who served our diocese over these 167 years. Available from the author.
  • Prince Edward Island Priests Away by Fr. Art O’Shea (2001). Short biographies of 241 Island men ordained for service outside our diocese, for religious orders and dioceses across Canada and the U.S. Available from the author.
  • A Faith Walk by Fr. Art O’Shea (2002). A hardcover pictorial history of our bishops, parishes, and diocesan institutions. 96 pages. Available from the author.
  • Nuns of P.E.I. by Fr. Art O’Shea (2004). Brief sketches of 925 Island women who joined a great variety of religious orders across Canada and the U.S. 314 pages. Available from the author.
  • A Century Plus Forty by Fr. Art O’Shea (2009). An historical review of the Diocese of Charlottetown, 1829-1969. Looks at diocesan and other events during the terms of our first nine bishops covering 140 years. 511 pages. Available at Indigo and the Bookmark in Charlottetown.
  • St. Michael’s Parish, Iona, An Historical Review by Fr. Art O’Shea (2011).
  • The Cathedral Parish of St. Dunstan (2016).  An historical review of our cathedral parish from 1829.  Available at the chancery, 205 pages.
  • Tales and Trails, Reflections of Life.  224 pages.  Available from the author.