The analysis of macroscopic wood charcoal fragments extracted from soils is frequently used as a palaeoecological tool for reconstructing stand-scale forest composition and fire history. Here we explored the putative loss of palaeoecological information due to charcoal degradation through time and in different biogeographical settings. We compared the relationship between charcoal mass and abundance for soil samples from five biogeographical regions of boreal northeastern North America spanning most of the Holocene period. We verified whether charcoal (Ø ≥ 2 mm) conservation differed as a consequence of different taphonomical processes between organic and mineral soil types. We also assessed the mass/abundance relationship as a function of charcoal residence time in soil. Overall, the slope of the regression between charcoal particles mass (g) and abundance (number of particles) was 0.0042. The slope was not significantly different in samples from organic and mineral soil, and all biogeographical regions had similar slope values except one (higher charcoal fragmentation, probably due to high colluvial activity). Charcoal conservation also did not vary according to residence time in soil. This study shows that macroscopic soil charcoal particles resist fragmentation over millennia in different biogeographical settings and under the influence of various taphonomical processes.