The Royal Administration in New France applied its policy of getting to know the population of its kingdom by carrying out regular censuses. This type of enumeration was not conducted in France until the reign of Napoleon I. As a result, more is known about the number of inhabitants, family structures, trades and urban-rural distribution in the colony than in the other provinces of France. Low immigration during the 17th and 18th centuries meant that despite high birth rates, the population remained small: in 1760, there were some 85,000 inhabitants, as compared to 2 million in the English colonies. Canada accounted for some 75,000 people, concentrated mainly in the St. Lawrence Valley; 5,000 lived in the areas of Acadia still under French rule, which comprised Īle Saint-Jean (Prince Edward Island) and Īle Royale (Cape Breton Island), with Louisbourg as the main settlement; 900 inhabited the Pays d'en haut (the Great Lakes region) and the outpost at Detroit; and 4,000 inhabitants lived in Louisiana.

The Population
General census of Canada, summary table, 1685
FR CAOM COL G1 461 fol. 3-3vo