Genealogy & History News Genealogy and history news and product announcements for Australians Thu, 18 Dec 2014 23:29:30 +0000 en-US hourly 1 #genchat: It’s Back in 2015 Thu, 18 Dec 2014 12:02:11 +0000 genchat 2014The idea of twitter chats continues to grow. Not only are they a great social media activity as you get to interact with people from all over the world, but they are actually a great way to learn as well.

#Genchat started back in 2013 when Jen Baldwin from Ancestral Journeys put the idea out there, and now two years on, the idea of genealogy chats on Twitter (aka #genchat) keeps on getting bigger and better.

The genchat website invites genealogy tweeters to …

Join us for every other Friday! Great conversations, lots of learning, and good times! 9pm Central [US time].

Jen has just launched a brand new #genchat website, a new twitter handle (@_genchat), and the schedule of topics for 2015, but don’t forget that there is still one #genchat session left for this year, so why not join in.



Dec 26: Your genealogy holiday gifts

2 – Hey, what’s new with #genchat?
16 – Let’s Get Organized!
30 – Writing Your Family History

13 – #genchat in SLC for #FGS2015 : The 1-2-3’s of genealogy
27 – What did you learn?

13 – Geneablogging made easy
27 – My DNA Results Mean What?

10 – #OGS2015 and the Original American Northwest
24 – Society Focus: Volunteers!

1 – Global Family Reunion with A.J. Jacobs
8 – Black Sheep = Bragging Rights?
22 – Gravestone Photography

5 – Your Global Family
19 – Tricks for searching Google

3 – Putting ancestors into historical context
17 – Making the most of your local library
31 – Society Focus: creative programming

14 – Need research details? Get local!
28 – Ethnic Focus: Hispanic Heritage

11 – Society Focus: Technology
25 – Researching from a distance

9 – Google Earth & Google Maps
23 – Overland Trails

6 – Ethnic Resources: African American Resources
20 – Transcribing

4 – Using non-genealogy software in genealogy
18- Keeping Inspired


The format of #genchat is that you log on to Twitter at the nominated time (Friday 9pm CST in the US), which is 10.30am on Saturday morning EST. As Jen is the organiser/convenor, she asks a series of questions over the period of an hour, each related to that week’s topic. And those who are joining in, tweet back with their answers. Others may not join in, but simply follow the #genchat hashtag, and see the conversation.

If you wish to to find out more about #genchat, visit their website, and be sure to follow them on Twitter.

And if you need to find out what time #genchat is on in your timezone, I suggest using

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How Do I Contact Ancestry? Tue, 16 Dec 2014 02:26:28 +0000 Vintage-TelephoneThere is no disputing that Ancestry is the world’s largest commercial genealogy company. It’s a name that even non-genealogists know.

The multi-country company offers US, UK, Canada and Australian sites, not to mention a number of non-English language versions.

Ancestry is a subscription based one that offers access to billions of records. And aside from that, they are the owners of the world’s most popular genealogy software program, Family Tree Maker.

As you can imagine being the biggest also tends to attract its share of queries and complaints.

Ancestry do offer customer support for queries relating to your Ancestry subscription, including if you wish to cancel it, change to a different level, help activating your free subscription or even query a past subscription login details. They can help with all of that.

They can also help users of Family Tree Maker with technical queries. So if you are having problems installing the program, transferring files from an earlier version, or problems with a recent update, give their tech support team a call, and they can talk you through it step-by-step.

But how do I get in contact with Ancestry? Well here you go. They do have their contact details on their website, but to make it easier for you I have put these details below.

1800 251 838
Mon-Fri 9am-8pm AEST
Sat-Sun 9am-4pm AEST

0800 442 100
Mon-Fri 11am-10pm NZST
Sat-Sun 11am-6pm NZST

0800 404 9723
Mon-Fri 9am-10pm ET
Sat-Sun 9am-8pm ET

1800 303 664
Mon-Fri 9am-10pm ET
Sat-Sun 9am-8pm ET

1800 958 9073
Mon-Fri 9am-11pm ET
Sat-Sun 9am-11pm ET*
*(Ancestry do not offer French support on weekends)

1800 ANCESTRY (1800 262 3787)
Mon-Fri 9am-11pm ET
Sat-Sun 9am-11pm ET

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Trove: The Largest Free Newspaper Website in the World! Mon, 15 Dec 2014 11:09:42 +0000 Trove - St George Call newspaper

“The National Library of Australia now has the largest freely available collection of digitised newspapers in the world with the 15 millionth page going online today on the award-winning website Trove.”

That was the announcement that the National Library of Australia made just a few days ago.

Here in Australia we all know that Trove is simply A-W-E-S-O-M-E, or should I say the old newspapers section of Trove is. Actually all of it is, but today we’re just talking about the historical newspapers.

If you give us researchers a spare moment or two, you’ll find us on Trove … again … “Troving” … just seeing what else we can find.

Anyway the team behind digitising and making the old newspapers available online, have reached the reached the enormous number of …

in words it’s 15 MILLION!!

Either way it is a phenomenal achievement, and what’s even more surprising, and one that we should be immensely thankful for, is that world class resource is still free for everyone access. Anywhere. Anytime.

You can read the National Library of Australia’s own announcement of this here: 15M Newspaper Pages Now Digitised.

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Unlock the Past Cruises 2015/2016 Schedule Announced Mon, 15 Dec 2014 03:00:56 +0000 Celebrity Eclipse cruise ship

Genealogy cruises are more popular than ever. And why wouldn’t they? A holiday, a genealogy conference, a touch of luxury, and touristing – all in one! A genealogy cruise gives you a chance to learn genealogy from some of the world’s best, while on holiday! Not to mention meeting and mingling with a heap of other people whose eyes don’t glaze over when the word genealogy is mentioned. And in fact they encourage it.

Unlock the Past Cruises have recently announced their genealogy cruises for 2015 and 2016, and what a range they have on offer. Australian based, they are now offering cruises not only around Australia, but they are venturing to the other side of the world on many of them.

Covering everything from two night cruises, to 19 days … there’s something for everyone

The following is part of the Press Release from Unlock the Past Cruises recently released …

Adelaide, South Australia, 1 December 2014 – Unlock the Past Cruises announces its 2015-16 program of seven history and genealogy cruises – all now booking. Discover more about your family history in great company while visiting great destinations. All who book a cruise during the remainder of 2014 and 2015 are in a draw for $6000 worth of prizes. In addition there are more great prize opportunities on each cruise!

[7th cruise] From Fremantle, Western Australia on the Astor, 19-24 January 2015, a cruise commemorating the departure of the convoys carrying the Australian Imperial Force (AIF) and New Zealand Expeditionary Force (later to be known collectively as the ANZACs) in late 1914. Noted Irish and military historian, Richard Reid, will be the lead presenter.

[8th cruise] Baltic cruise on the Celebrity Eclipse, 11-25 July 2015, visiting northern Europe, St Petersburg and Scandinavia – departing Southampton and visiting Bruges (Belgium), Berlin (Germany), Tallinn (Estonia), St Petersburg (Russia), Helsinki (Finland), Stockholm (Sweden), and Copenhagen (Denmark). Apart from fantastic ports of call learn from a great team of presenters including Cyndi Ingle and Paul Milner (United States), Chris Paton and Janet Few (UK), Shauna Hicks and Carol Baxter (Australia) and many more.

[9th cruise] A Transatlantic cruise on the Celebrity Eclipse, 1-16 November 2015 – one way from Southampton to Miami visiting Boston, New York, Bermuda and Port Canaveral. Many of our ancestors made a similar trip when they migrated – here is your chance to do the same and learn from Dick Eastman (USA), Else Churchill, Alec Tritton and Kirsty Gray (UK), Shauna Hicks (Australia) and more.

[10th cruise] Our cheapest ever cruise! A short two night cruise from Brisbane 8-10 December 2015, on the Legend of the Seas. Lead presenter is Stephanie Ryan (State Library of Queensland).

[11th cruise] New Zealand to Australia on the Celebrity Solstice, 14 February-3 March 2016. The cruise commences in Auckland (New Zealand) and finishes in Fremantle (Perth, Western Australia), visiting many New Zealand and Australian ports. Among the stunning sights are the Dusky, Doubtful and Milford Sounds. The cruise will have an international team of presenters with Judy G Russell (USA), the Legal Genealogist, as the lead presenter.

[12th cruise] Coming a long way? Team the previous cruise up with a seven night cruise to the Great Barrier Reef, Queensland 6-13 March 2016 departing Brisbane on the Legend of the Seas. Carol Baxter (Australia) will present her highly acclaimed eight lecture series on researching and writing history and genealogy; other presenters include Helen Smith, Judy Webster, and Eric and Rosemary Kopittke.

[13th cruise] And the European river cruise – a romantic seven night cruise on the Rhine from Amsterdam to Basel 31 July-7 August 2016 on Tranquility II. Enjoy fantastic scenery  and a unique opportunity to network with other genealogists in the group.

Interested? Well here’s sone comments from those who’ve been on a past cruise (or two) …

A genealogy conference on the high seas? Not only do you get all the fun of a regular cruise, you have the opportunity to network with other family historians from all over the world. The best part: the lectures and educational presentations are offered by some of the leading speakers in the genealogy industry. And Unlock the Past Cruises has the best selection of destinations and speakers hands down! – Thomas MacEntee, United States, 4th cruise presenter

With over thirty years of genealogy conferences behind me, I had long ago decided that the best conferences were those that were ‘live-in’—with on-site accommodation—you can really feel you are in Genealogy Heaven!! Now I know better! Now I know real Genealogy Heaven is an UTP cruise! Cocooned in another world; with friends—new and old; eating, drinking, sleeping, learning, absorbing genealogy!! 24/7!! Sea days; shore days; EVERY day a gem!! – Jan Gow, New Zealand, 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 11th cruise presenter

For more information on any of these cruises, please visit the Unlock the Past Cruises website And you can download the 16 page catalogue giving details of each of all 2015-16 cruises at

To register your interest or book for any of them, please contact Ciaran at Clean Cruising who deals with all the booking for Unlock the Past Cruises, you can phone on 1800 121 187, or email

So check them out, we’d love to see you one (or more) of them. They really are the prefect way to learn and make new friends.

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10 Handy Hints and Tips for Genealogists Fri, 05 Dec 2014 10:35:20 +0000 Hints-and-tipsHandy hints and tips are useful in all genres, and genealogy is no exception. Here is a list of 10 handy hints that I have compiled for you. Some of these I’ve learnt from others, while others are from my own experience.

I hope you find them useful.


1. Label and date your photographs, future generations will thank you forever!

2. Store your certificates and precious documents in acid-free pockets and folders.

3. Always use a pencil to fill in a chart first.

4. Make a note of EVERY source that you have checked in a research log. It will save you time and effort later.

5. Learn the geography of the region your ancestors came from. Boundaries did change, so it will help you work out where to look for records.

6. Search secondhand book stores for an old dictionary. The older it is, the more similar it is to have words and meaning your ancestors used.

7. The Internet does NOT have all records online, not by a long way. But we all know this anyway, don’t we!

8. Verify EVERYTHING (online data, family stories, diaries, your fourth cousin’s tree etc). As the saying goes, “genealogy without documentation is mythology”.

9. Backup your data regularly, and store a copy offsite.

10. Visit your local archives or society, and see how they can help you.

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Inspiring Genealogy Blogs – November 2014 Fri, 05 Dec 2014 04:51:17 +0000 Inspiring Blogs 300December is here, and the there’s no doubt that the shops are getting crazy. So take a moment to chill out, have a cuppa and have a read of some great genealogy blog posts I came across during the past month.

In this November edition we cover everything from a why you should blog, family photos, digital storage, DNA, Christmas gifts for genealogists, a family mystery solved by relooking at an heirloom and a bunch more.

I know that I’ve mentioned before (each time) that I find that reading blog posts helps me keep up with the latest news, products as well as what’s happening in general in the world of genealogy. And if you happen to already follow me on Facebook, Twitter, and to some extent Google+, you already know that I like to share with you the interesting things I read.

Digital Storage for Family Historians
Carole Riley recently gave a talk to the Society of Australian Genealogists on this topic, and as it is such a relevant topic for everyone these days, she has decided to share her presentation slides with everyone. Read the full article …

Six Reasons to Blog About Your Ancestors
You’ve heard about blogs and blogging. You read blogs. You may have even thought about starting one yourself, but just haven’t gone that extra step of starting one. In case you needed any more reason to actually start one, and benefits of blogging about your family history, Legacy Family Tree have come up with six very good reasons that are likely to convince you to get you blog up and running. Read the full article …

Family Discovers their Photo is on Advertisements Around the World
You take a family photo and put it online to share with your family and friends. Next you see YOUR family photo is being used on advertising brochures. How on earth can that happen? Well it’s exactly what did happen to one family. And the story doesn’t stop there. Read the full article …

What Will Your Legacy Be?
This was a question to was put to Kirsty at Family Wise recently, and it got her thinking, not just about her own legacy, but about what legacies her ancestors have left her. It certainly makes interesting reading. Read the full article ….

How Much DNA do Distant Cousins Actually Share?
It’s an interesting question isn’t it. And Henry Louis Gates Jr and Cece Moore answer the question. Those known as “first-degree relatives” such as parents, children and full siblings, will share about 50 percent of your autosomal DNA (atDNA). With each relationship removal, the expected amount of shared atDNA is cut in half. As you would expect for second-degree relatives (grandparents, grandchildren, uncles, aunts, nephews, nieces, half-siblings), and third-degree relatives (first cousins, great-grandparents, great-grandchildren) the percentage drops. But what about those beyond that. What about second, third or even fourth cousins? Read the full article …

50 Gifts for Genealogists 2014
What do you get a genealogist? Personally I don’t think it’s hard, but for those who are stuck for ideas Diane has come up with 50 of them for you. From tech toys, to useful bits and pieces to personal gifts, there’s something in this list for everyone Read the full article …

Gifts for the Girl Who Has Everything
And while we’re on the topic of gifts, Jill has come up with a fabulous list of 21 items, many of which don’t even cost a thing. Read the full article …

Don’t Rely on the Search Engine
Cheryl give good advice when she says that “search engines can be temperamental. You can put your information into the main engine and find very little that is relevant to the person you’re looking for, but if you perform the same search in a specific database, it can yield genealogical gold!” Read the full article …

Word Lists
Have you heard about the Word Lists on FamilySearch? No? Well, I’ll let Michele tell you all about them in this post. But let me just say that if you are researching in a foreign country, these lists can a HUGE help. So take a moment to read this one. Read the full article …

Building a Pedigree from Sources – The Ultimate Challenge
Genealogy begins with a pedigree chart and a search for names, right? James Tanner suggests that this ‘traditional’ method is no longer current in our modern society, and gives details on how to build a pedigree from sources online. Read the full article …

Giving Thanks in 2014
During November our friends in the US celebrated Thanksgiving, and Judy (aka The Legal Genealogist) sat down to write about all the things she’s thankful for. For a very thoughtful post, take a moment to read this one. It really puts things into perspective. Read the full article …

Message Left in a Family Painting Solves a Family Mystery
How many times have you relooked at something and picked up new clues from it? Well that’s exactly what happened to Vera. She’s been able to answer a long standing family mystery thanks to clues that were in a painting. Read the full article …

Happy Reading ;-)

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Biggest Digitisation of Irish Genealogy Records Begins Tue, 02 Dec 2014 11:20:49 +0000 If you have Irish ancestry, and are still having trouble tracking your ancestors don’t despair, as the National Library of Ireland is set to digitise more than 400,000 images of Catholic parish register and publish them online for free. Yes, FREE!

Irish Catholic Parish Registers

This project is already being described as “the most significant ever digitisation project for Irish genealogy” and the National Library of Ireland (NLI) are giving a date of summer of 2015 as to when these will be available. (Remember that’s Australia’s winter, so around June-August 2015).

The Press Release from the National Library of Ireland (NLI) says the following …

The records are considered the single most important source of information on Irish family history prior to the 1901 Census. Dating from the 1740s to the 1880s, they cover 1,091 parishes throughout Ireland, and consist primarily of baptismal and marriage records.

Commenting today, Colette O’Flaherty, Head of Special Collections at the NLI, said: “This is the most ambitious digitisation project in the history of the NLI, and our most significant ever genealogy project. We believe it will be of huge assistance to those who wish to research their family history. At this stage, we have converted the microfilm reels on which the registers are recorded into approximately 390,000 digital images. We will be making  all these images available, for free, on a dedicated website, which will be launched in summer 2015.

The 390,000 digital images due to be published by the NLI will be searchable by parish location only. They will not be transcribed or indexed by the NLI, and the images will be of the microfilms of the original registers, which – in some cases – were in poor condition when the microfilming took place. The images will be in black and white.

Anyone who has traced their family history knows it can sometimes be frustrating due to illegible handwriting on original records or poor-quality reproductions or transcriptions,” said Colette O’Flaherty. “Unfortunately, we do not have the resources to transcribe or index the images we are making available.

The information in the registers varies from parish to parish but, typically, includes the dates of the baptisms or marriages, and the names of the key people involved, including godparents or witnesses. Obviously, such information is extremely valuable for both amateur genealogists and professional researchers.  

Set to be created as a separate website, John Grenham’s report of this in The Irish Times, goes into possible opposition that this project might face, but he finishes off with the best quote …

“It is almost impossible to overstate the importance of what is about to happen. When the Irish public service gets things right, it can get them spectacularly, gloriously right.”

So researchers of Irish ancestry. If you’re currently stuck on your Irish lines, give yourself a little break. Work on a different branch, or do some of that scanning of documents and old photos (not to mention the slides) that you keep putting off. And in six to eights months or so, you’ll be ready and raring to get going on that Irish research again.

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Finding Your Farming Ancestors in Australia Fri, 28 Nov 2014 01:07:02 +0000 Rolls of gathered hay on the lands - High Contrast Black and White (browntone)
Call them farmers, or orchardists, agriculturalists, pastoralists, or even stockmen. There are numerous related words that describe our “ag lab” ancestors. These are men and women who worked on the land.

They are the ones who helped make our country what it is today. But they are also people who are often the hardest to find in records. Why? Because they aren’t criminals, and they aren’t nobility both of which created oodles records. In fact for the most part they are simply good mannered, hard working citizens, which doesn’t tend to leave much of a papertrail.

However I’m here to tell you about a heap of titles that you can use to help find your farming ancestors in Australia. Possibly even some that you didn’t know existed.


A Glance at Australia in 1880: Embracing a Squatters and Farmers Directory of the Whole of Australia
Written by H. Mortimer Franklyn, and published in 1881, this “shows the present condition and production of some of its leading industries, namely, wool, wine, grain, dressed meat, etc. The amount of each produced and exported. To which is appended the rise and progress of some of the leading mercantile houses in Melbourne, Sydney and Adelaide. Also included is a 100 page pastoral and agricultural directory of the whole of Australia which lists people in two columns, followed by heap of advertisements, many of them illustrated.
CD version
Ebook version

Australian Pastoral Directory Compendium 3
If you are researching ancestors who were stockowners in Australia, the Pastoral Directories are a great resource. This compendium contains facsimiles of the years 1913, 1923, 1925, 1931, 1939 and 1954. Published yearly each edition of the pastoral directories lists thousands of stockowners and agents for most states in Australia. The information listed contains the name of the station and the owner, however the larger states (New South Wales and Queensland) contain more detail including numbers of cattle and sheep.
CD version
Ebook version – to come



New South Wales Country Directory 1895 (Hall)
In 600 pages, this edition of ‘Halls Business, Professional and Pastoral Directory and Gazetteer of New South Wales for 1895′ is rather like a regular directory except that it also covers regional NSW, and has a whole sections dedicated to agricultural and graziers and related occupations, each giving name and address of the farmer.
CD version
Ebook version – to come

New South Wales Country Directory 1899-1900 (Hall)
The 1899-1900 of Hall’s Directory is divided into four sections; firstly country towns, then alphabetical list, pastoral directory and lastly a gazetteer. The Pastoral Directory gives a list of owners, name of run, number of stock and postal district.
CD version
Ebook version – to come

Yewen’s Directory of Landholders, New South Wales, 1900
This was the “first broad attempt at publishing a complete directory of landowners in New South Wales …” Divided into approximately 1900 postal localities grouped under 87 larger districts, there is an introduction and summary to each district. It indicates for each landholder whether they are dairy farmers, graziers or agriculturalists and what crops are under cultivation in the following categories – wheat, maize, barley, oats, potatoes, tobacco, sugar, other crops, grapes and orchard fruits. This a wonderful, extensive guide to over 70,000 landholders throughout NSW, by district and postal address.
CD version
Ebook version




Brisbane Directory and Squatters’ Guide 1876
Directories are a valuable resource for local, family and social historians as well as for researchers in other fields of Australian history. This Brisbane Directory and Squatters Guide contains a comprehensive Brisbane Street directory, Brisbane and suburbs alphabetical and trades and professional directories and much more. It also includes a Queensland Squatters directory which lists the names and address of many squatters (pastoralists) in Queensland in 1876.
CD version
Ebook version – to come

The Grazier’s Review Volume 10: April 1930-March 1931
A large publication of over 1200 pages, the Graziers’ Review was the official publication of the United Graziers’ Association of Queensland, and It included much information of particular relevance to graziers – on the weather, meat market, live stock market, stud stock, stock movements and much more. Importantly, it also mentioned the people involved – a “personal” section, obituaries, lists of shearing contractors, and reports from the various district meetings. As well, it has good information, in the advertisements, about many of the properties.
CD version
Ebook version – to come

The Grazier’s Review Volume 11: April 1931-March 1932
Like the previous year, this volume contains literally 1000s of entries relating to graziers, farmers, pastoralists in Queensland during the 1931/1932 period. The “personal” section is the really interesting part, as is lists obituaries, lists of estates for which probate has been granted, lists of shearing contractors, and reports from the various district meetings. As well, it has good information, in the advertisements, about many of the properties.
CD version
Ebook version – to come

The Grazier’s Review Volume 13: April 1933-March 1934
Slightly smaller than the previous two volumes, maybe that was an indication of less farmers around, or less registering? Anyway there’s still plenty of information to be found in the 900+ pages in this book. Containing not only information useful for those in the agricultural industry (weather, markets as so on), the personal section is particularly useful, detailing engagements, weddings, obituaries and estates.
CD version
Ebook version – to come

Queensland Brands Directory 1920-1921
Did your ancestors in Queensland own horses or cattle? If so, have you thought of looking in the Brands Directories for more information on them? These are a unique, but incredibly useful source for genealogical information, when looking for those who had stock. In case you’re not familiar with what brands are … those who had horses or cattle, branded them with a unique symbol and/or letters. This identified who the animal/s belonged to. This large volume contains many tens of thousands of such brands for those in Queensland from 1920 to 1921.
CD version
Ebook version – to come

Queensland Brands Directory 1945-1948
Those who had horses or cattle, branded them with unique symbol and/or letters. This identified who the animal/s belonged to. This large volume contains a listing of over 75,000 such brands for those in Queensland from 1945 to 1948. But what information can be found from brand directories? You can find an image of the brand registered, earmark registered, cheek brand, or symbol, name of owner, address of owner, and sometimes the certificate number.
CD version
Ebook version – to come

Queensland Brands Directory 1949-1952
Listing brands for horses and cattle, this directory contains over 1000 pages of names, addresses and the brands that each stockowner had.
CD version
Ebook version – to come



Brands Directory of South Australia 1901
Stockowners were required to register and get a “brand” for their stock which identified what stock belonged to who. This Brands Directory for South Australia from 1901 contains brands for sheep, horses and cattle. In it you’ll find all the registered brands along with, certificate number, former brands, name of proprietor, run where the brand is to be used (address), and nearest post town.
CD version
Ebook version – to come

Brands Directory of South Australia 1936: Sheep Brands
In this volume you’ll find 1000s of stockowners who owned sheep in South Australia in 1936.
This volume is divided into three sections: sheep brands; sheep earmarks and firebrands; and alphabetical list of names of owners.
CD version
Ebook version – to come

Brands Directory of South Australia 1938: Sheep Brands
Like the earlier Brands Directories, this volume contains names, addresses and details of the sheep brand for South Australian stockowners in 1938.
CD version
Ebook version – to come

Geelong, Western District and Squatters Directory 1866-1867 (Stevens)
This book is an extremely comprehensive directory of the western districts of Victoria, and Mount Gambier, Port McDonnell and Penola in South Australia. For the full description, look under Victoria.
CD version
Ebook version – to come

Pastoral Pioneers of South Australia
One of the most important publications available for those researching their South Australian farmers, this two volume set (now on CD) contains approximately 300 biographies of South Australia’s Pastoral Pioneers and Old Colonists. The Foreword claims that ‘… this is the most comprehensive collection of biographies ever produced in relation to the pastoral industry of any state’. A photograph accompanies each entry, as well as extensive biographical details. Those falling into the ‘Old Colonists’ category had arrived in the state prior December 28, 1846 (which was the 10th Anniversary of the Province). A large percentage of the entries in these volumes contain previously unpublished information (other that the Stock Journal), including information that has been supplied by descendants and old friends of those listed, which includes details and stories that would have otherwise gone unknown.
CD version
Ebook version – to come


hay bales


Geelong, Western District and Squatters Directory 1866-1867 (Stevens)
This book is an extremely comprehensive directory of the western districts of Victoria including several areas in the south eastern corner of South Australia. This title contains street directories, alphabetical directories and commercial directories covering places throughout western Victorian, and eastern South Australia (Mount Gambier, Port McDonnell and Penola). This directory is unique in that it contains a squatters directory as well. It you’re unfamiliar with the term squatter in relation to farmers, Wikipedia says the following “The term ‘squatter’ derives from its English usage as a term of contempt for a person who had taken up residence at a place without having legal claim. The use of ‘squatter’ in the early years of European settlement of Australia had a similar connotation, referring primarily to a person who had ‘squatted’ on unoccupied land for pastoral or other purposes.”
CD version
Ebook version – to come

Gippsland Directory 1884-1885 (Middleton and Maning)
Beginning with a heap of advertisements from local businesses of the time, this is followed by a short gazetteer of places around the region, as well as general information on the districts of Gippsland. The main part of the Directory consisting of about 100 pages, is the Alphabetical Directory. Listed alphabetically by surname under each region, this lists heads of household (mostly male but there are a few females mentioned), together with their occupation and address. Among this list you will find farmers, labourers, coach painters, dairywoman, teacher, saddler, brickmaker, merchant, laundress, hotel keeper, minister of religion, dressmaker, grocer, grazier, gasfitter, seedsman, coachbuilder, engineer, auctioneer, upholsterer, fowler, journalist, surveyor, musician, traveller, watchmaker, solicitor, restaurant keeper, blacksmith and miner … just to mention a few. So in other words it is not just “business owners” mentioned in this directory it is everyone.
CD version
Ebook version – to come

Victorian Directory (Sands and McDougall) 1900s to 1940s
The Sands and McDougall directories, or Sands and Mac as they tend to be known as, are one of the most comprehensive statewide directories available for Victoria. Covering Melbourne as well as regional areas, they list head-of-the-household street-by-street for bigger regions, and name, occupations and addresses for people in the state at the time (including farmers). We have 28 various years
available on CD. Each are full copies of the original volumes, and are fully searchable.



Centenary Catalogue of Farms and Stations for Sale in Western Australia
Consisting of 95 pages plus large foldout map, this publication begins with a list of properties sold by Joseph Charles between January 1921 and April 1929 with locality, acreage, name of the vendor and name of the purchaser – around 120 properties, 90 of which were rural properties ranging in size from under 100 acres up to 280,000 acres. Then follows details of approx 650 rural properties offered for sale with details of each such as: location, acreage, water (dams, wells), description of paddocks and fencing, description of hous/s on the property, description of sheds and other buildings, description of plant and equipment and stock included in the sale.
CD version
Ebook version – to come

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Free “Introduction to Family History” Course Wed, 26 Nov 2014 05:39:59 +0000 Introduction-to-family-history-course-UTAS
The University of Tasmania are offering a free (yes, I said FREE) family history course over summer, known as their “Spring School”.

The description of their course states that …

“Introduction to Family History is designed for people interested in their own family histories or genealogy in general. You will learn how to research family history accurately and efficiently using the growing range of online family history resources. You may be surprised at what you discover and what you can share with family and friends.”

It is a fully-online course, so anyone, anywhere was take part, and you even get free access to Library edition when you sign up for the course.

The course runs from December 2014 to February 2015, and does require approx. 4-5 hours of study a week. Spring School 2014, starts on December 8th, and applications need to be completed by December 16th, 2014.

The key to good research is getting a good foundation, and courses are a great way to learn about important records, skills, and methods early on in your research. So if you are a family history beginner and you can squeeze in a few hours of study into your week, what are you waiting for? You should do this course. And if you are an experienced researcher, it has been said numerous times that often going back and reviewing the basics is a good thing, so I have no doubt that you’d find this course useful too.

For more about this family history course, and to sign up you can find all the details here.

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Even More Australian Passenger Lists! Mon, 24 Nov 2014 01:41:27 +0000 Old merchant ship - 3D renderAsk anyone researching their family history what they wish to find, and they’ll tell you (amongst other things) passenger lists! They want to know when and how their ancestor arrived in the country. So to say that they are a key record for researchers is an understatement.

I’ve recently told you about the new South Australian passenger lists, as well as the Victorian ones that are on findmypast, and have also mentioned in the past about the Queensland passenger lists that are online at the Queensland State Archives.

However in amongst my recent genealogy-internetting I discovered that Ancestry has a stash of over 2.3 million records of Western Australian passenger lists. Well actually, it is crew AND passenger lists, so that’s very cool, and another useful source for researchers.

Ancestry - WA Passenger Lists

And for those with immigants to New South Wales, you’ll find about 10 million records of assisted and unsassited records on Ancestry.

You can see the listing of all Ancestry’s Australian “travel-related” data sets below, and get to the category click here.

– Western Australia, Australia, Crew and Passenger Lists, 1852-1930
– Fremantle, Western Australia, Passenger Lists, 1897-1963
– Australian Convict Transportation Registers – Other Fleets & Ships, 1791-1868
– Australian Convict Transportation Registers – Third Fleet, 1791
– Australian Convict Transportation Registers – Second Fleet, 1789-1790
– Australian Convict Transportation Registers – First Fleet, 1787-1788
– 19-Century Emigration of ‘Old Lutherans’ from Eastern Germany to Australia, Canada, and the United States
– New South Wales, Australia, Unassisted Immigrant Passenger Lists, 1826-1922
– New South Wales, Australia, Departing Crew and Passenger Lists, 1816-1825, 1898-1911
– New South Wales, Australia, Assisted Immigrant Passenger Lists, 1828-1896
– New South Wales, Australia, Passengers Arriving at Port Phillip, 1846
– New South Wales, Australia, Wives & Children of Irish Convicts, 1825-1840
– New South Wales, Australia, Certificates of Naturalization, 1849-1903
– New South Wales, Australia 1828 – 1842: Bounty Immigrants List
– New South Wales, Australia, Registers of Seamen, 1859-1936
– New South Wales, Australia, Immigration Deposit Journals, 1853-1900
– New South Wales, Australia, Convict Ship Muster Rolls and Related Records, 1790-1849
– Queensland, Australia, Passenger Lists, 1848-1912
– Maryborough, Queensland Australia Immigrants from the British Isles & Germany 1861-91
– Tasmania, Australia, Passenger Arrivals, 1829-1957
– Tasmania, Australia, Immigrant Lists, 1841-1884
– Tasmania, Australia, Immigrant Applications and Bounty Tickets, 1854-1887
– Victoria, Australia, Assisted and Unassisted Passenger Lists, 1839–1923

Here are the titles listed on findmypast’s Australian Travel & Migration category
– Aliens Registered In The Northern Territory 1916-1921
– Passengers To South Australia On Board Buffalo 1836
– Calais Lacemaker Immigrants To South Australia 1848
– Convict Transportation Registers 1787-1870
– South Australia Convicts
– Emigrants Seeking Free Passage To South Australia 1836-1841
– New South Wales and Tasmania: Settlers and Convicts 1787-1859
– Queensland Ship Deserters 1862-1911
– South Australia Naturalisations 1849-1903
– South Australia, Passenger Lists 1847-1886
– South Australian Ex-Convicts
– South Australia, Immigrant Agricultural Workers 1913-14
– Victoria Inward Passenger Lists 1839-1923
– Victoria Outward Passenger Lists 1852-1915
– Passenger Lists Leaving UK 1890-1960
– New South Wales Convict Arrivals
– Hamburg, Germany Emigrants
– Queensland Early Pioneers

And if you get a chance to obtain or view a copy of Inside History Magazine Issue 17 (Jul-Aug 2013) do so, as Judy Webster has a fascinating article on “the case of false identity that will have you looking at 19th-century passenger lists in a new light”.

Happy searching! ;-)

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I Didn’t Know I Could Do That With RootsMagic 6 [VIDEO] Sun, 23 Nov 2014 06:35:15 +0000 RootsMagic is one of the THE genealogy software programs out there for the PC. Now into it’s 12th year, it has certainly ‘proved’ itself as one of the “stayers” in the genealogy software world.

While I meet many people who have genealogy software, I find that quite a number of users don’t know their program deeply. They know enough to know how to enter details and print out what is required, often not utilising great features that the program has to offer.

RootsMagicTV is RootsMagic’s YouTube channel, and on it they have created a number of short videos on how to do this or that. in this post I just wanted to highlight a few of the features in RootsMagic that are not necessarily something that you’d use regularly. And some of you may not have even known that RootsMagic could do that.

Since I’ve previously mentioned about how to use RootsMagic on a Mac, and how to run it from a USB I’m skipping those this time … but here’s 6 more videos showing features that you can discover.

1. Customising RootsMagic to Feel More Like PAF
In June 2013 FamilySearch discontinued their genealogy software program Personal Ancestoral File otherwise known as PAF. While RootsMagic is a different program, it can be customised to feel a bit more like Personal Ancestral File (PAF), which helps those in the transition from PAF.

2.  Using Drag and Drop in RootsMagic
A short video showing how to use drag and drop to copy people from one RootsMagic file to another, whether to split off a family line, or add information from one database into another.

3. Colour Coding People in RootsMagic
If you want to highlight a person or a branch, colour coding is a way to do it. And this short video shows you how to do just that.

4. Importing an Ancestry Family Tree into RootsMagic 
Actually I’m sure you all knew that this could be done. but sometimes it is the ‘how-to-do-it” that gets people confused. So that’s why I chose to share this video with you. This video shows you how to import a family tree from Ancestry into RootsMagic, including people, relationships, data, and sources.

5. Creating a Shareable CD with RootsMagic 
A short video showing how to create a self running CD with your RootsMagic database, media, and intro page. The shareable CD does not require the person you share it with to have or install anything.

6. Mapping Your Family Tree with Family Atlas
Family Atlas is a mapping program, that is put out by RootsMagic. In this video they show you how to go about using this program to create your very own family map.

For links to RootsMagic software, click here
For visit the RootsMagic website, click here
To try our the free version of RootsMagic Essentials, download it here

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FamilySearch, 120 Years Old and Still Going Strong Sat, 22 Nov 2014 07:11:40 +0000 120th-AnniversaryThere’s not too many times in anyone’s lifetime when you get to say “Happy 120th Birthday” to someone, but now we can.

The world’s biggest genealogical organisation, FamilySearch has reached the mighty 120, and what an impressive milestone it is. Having started out as the Genealogical Society of Utah in 1894, to “assist members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints seek out their ancestors and preserve their family trees for future generations”,

So to begin with I’d like to share my version of Happy Birthday with them and yourselves:

Happy birthday to you
Happy birthday to you
Happy birthday to FamilySearrrccccchhhhhhhhh
You changed the world of genealogy
And for that we’d like to thank you!!

They really did change to world of genealogy which started as soon as they began collecting records way back in 1894, and they haven’t stopped. Their collection is beyond comprehension, and is stored in a multi-level mountain in Utah (granite Mountain). If you haven’t seen the mountain, be sure to check out this video …

They have records from over 100 countries, some which are now the only copy in existence. Their their vast collection grows daily, but the image below gives you some idea of the figures …

120 Year FamilySearch table

FamilySearch wrote a lengthy post about their 120th anniversary. I’m not going to reproduce it here, but if you’re interested to know more about the history of the company you can read it here.

And they have produced this cool timeline infographic which shows they key happenings in the life of FamilySearch, and you can see how quickly things have been happening since the 1990s. (You’ll need to right-click it to see it nice an big).

(click for a larger view)

(right click for a larger view)

Being 120 years old certainly hasn’t slowed FamilySearch down in anyway, in fact it they seem to have a who new lease on life, and are making things happen quicker than ever.

and while some organisations might run out of steam, it seems that FamilySearch are just getting started.

So from all of us here are Gould Genealogy & History, we’d like to wish FamilySearch a very 120th Birthday 120th, and we’re looking forward to what the next 120 years brings.

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Inside History Magazine – Issue 25 (Nov-Dec 2014) is Out Now Thu, 20 Nov 2014 06:39:12 +0000 Inside History Magazine - 2014-11Issue 25 of Australia’s premier genealogy and history magazine, Inside History Magazine has hit the newsagent shelves and the letterboxes of subscribers, and it is another bumper issue.

Readers will find out about the latest free online resources and tools. Jayne Shrimpton who is world-renowned for dating of vintage photo, enlightens readers on how to use hairstyles as clues to help date a photograph.

Remembrance Day in November is when we all think about our military heritage, and Inside History Magazine share with us two heartwarming stories of reuniting lost war objects with their rightful owners.

In this issue you’ll read about the new “Inside History Supports Trove” campaign. This is your opportunity to help get a newspaper digitised on Trove through a nationwide crowdfunding intitiative.

Also packed into the 74 pages you’ll find:

– What’s new online: countless new resources what will help your find your missing ancestors
– In search of greener pasters: The migration scheme that changed the lives of struggling British families
– Dead men tell tales: rediscover Ernest Shackleton’s audacious trans-Antarctic voyage and the Australian photographer who captured their struggle
– Christine Bramble, historian and author of ‘Sisters of the Valley’ shares the challenges and rewards of researching WW1 nurses
– Shauna Hicks’s helps solve the puzzle of a marriage certificate riddled with errorsPlus there’s much more, including opportunities to network with other genealogists, book reviews and app reviews. They have $1000s of dollars worth of books to giveaway and even a chance to win a trip to Norfolk Island!

You can buy the printed copies of the magazine from Inside History directly, and a number of societies and newsagents around Australia stock it as well (Click here to see a list of stockists).  For a sneak peek of this issue, and past issues check out Issuu.

So if you love Australian history and genealogy, and reading, you really can’t go past Inside History Magazine!



Copies of the current issue (and back issues) can be bought from the Inside History website. Or you can subscribe to the magazine
AUD$9.95 / NZ$10.95 per issue
AUD$25.00 / NZ $45.00 6 mth subscription (3 issues)
AUD$50.00 /NZ $90.00 12 mth subscription (6 issues)

iPad edition (available from the iTunes Store)
Android & Desktop edition (available from Zinio)


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WorldWarOne Link Website Launched Tue, 18 Nov 2014 09:52:47 +0000 logo - WW1 Link new2014 marks 100 years since the start of World War One, with the centenary of the Gallipoli landing coming up in 2015. These events have sparked an enormous number of commemorative projects worldwide which are being conducted by individuals, groups and even towns.

On Remembrance Day 2015 people around the world stopped to remember those who had served in war, and those who never came home.

Remembrance Day this year also saw the launch of a brand new Australian website – WorldWarOne Link. This website is dedicated to listing WW1 Commemorative Projects which are being conducted throughout Australia.

To answer question of “What is WorldWarOne Link?” their website says the following …

“WWI Link is a non-commercial online research database, funded by a Your Community Heritage Grant, that showcases the wide variety of commemorative projects underway throughout Australia during the centenary years of WWI. The site provides a central platform for researchers to collaborate and promote their work, as well as providing media, volunteers and the general public with the opportunity to easily discover and participate in these projects. The site was officially launched on Remembrance Day 2014 with the second stage of the website’s rollout expected to come a few months later, including new functionalities that will allow contributors, or ‘Project Owners’, to create and manage their own project profiles.”

Launched on last week, the site already lists 49 projects. These cover new books being written, digitisation projects, research projects, virtual museums, websites, exhibition and more.

So if you are involved with an Australian related WWI Project head on over to their website and get it registered. For more information on WorldWarOne Link, including how to submit your project, be sure read their FAQs.

To keep up with the latest projects and happenings follow WorldWarOne Link on:

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Introducing “The Surname Society” Fri, 14 Nov 2014 05:13:47 +0000 logo - Surname SocietyThe big genealogy-news this week is the launch of THE SURNAME SOCIETY.

A brand new not-for-profit group founded by a team of genealogists from around the world, brings you a dedicated website that allows you to register the surname that you are researching – be it in a small local area (ie. all Carter’s in Redruth in Cornwall), or worldwide (ie. all Carter’s around the world).

You can read more about The Surname Society in their press release:

The founding members are delighted to announce the launch of The Surname Society – the online society for individuals, groups and associations with an interest in surname studies, regardless of their location in the world, the surname they are studying, or their level of research expertise.

Focussing on single surname studies, the society meets the needs of researchers in the world of family history and genealogy as it evolves in the 21st century. The Surname Society’s vision is to connect like-minded people by providing facilities which enable members to share knowledge, data and good practice with others. The society allows members to register both worldwide and limited studies and is entirely online. Collaboration is facilitated and encouraged as it is the core ethos of The Surname Society.
Surname researchers collect data relating to all name bearers, either on a global or restricted basis. The society does not mandate study methods and members are encouraged to develop their own approach to the investigation of their surname to advance their knowledge and expertise in areas such as etymology, DNA, name collection and family reconstruction. The Surname Society will help and advise inexperienced members on ways to conduct their study and how to avoid the pitfalls which can occur!

A truly global organisation from the outset, the committee members are located around the world from Australia to England, Spain and Canada and in the first week since its announcement to those who completed the online questionnaire, the society has almost one hundred new and enthusiastic members.

The cost of membership to The Surname Society is just £5 per annum with no hidden extras. You can register as many names as you want on either a restricted or worldwide basis, collaborate with others, share in the educational opportunities offered and a plethora of resources in the Members’ area of the website including a fascinating quarterly e-newsletter and the School of Surnames, with many other developments in the pipeline in due course.

For more about the founding members, and the reasons for starting The Surname Society, you might light to watch this video.

So, what are you waiting for? Take a look at the website and if you are interested, join!

For more information:
follow their News blog
Twitter  @surnamesoc
Google+ The Surname Society

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How to Use and Run RootsMagic To-Go Thu, 13 Nov 2014 12:25:52 +0000 RootsMagic To-Go screenshot

RootsMagic has proved itself as one of the world’s best known and loved genealogy software programs, having been around for over 10 years. Made for the PC, the team at RootsMagic have worked hard and users of Mac’s can also now use this amazing program.

One of the features that makes RootsMagic so unique is the RootsMagic To-Go feature.

For those who are not familiar with what RootsMagic To-Go is, it is a feature that allows users use RootsMagic from a flashdrive. Yes, truly. You simply have the full program as well as your data file/s on a flashdrive, and can then plug it into any computer with a USB port, and use it from them without it installing on that computer.

So when you go and visit your 3rd cousin, or great uncle and get some updated data. Use your RootsMagic To-Go by plugging your flashdrive into their computer. And when you get home, your files will be updated with those on your computer. Neat eh?

Earlier this week we had a query from a user, who was having trouble working out how to get this function working. so I have found step-by-step instructions which you can work through. Or if you prefer to visually see how to do it, here is a video showing you how.

The other bits:
– for more about the program (or to buy it) click here
– to try out RootsMagic for free click here
– to view more videos from RootsMagic visit their YouTube channel

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Trove Celebrates with TROVEmber Mon, 10 Nov 2014 06:51:46 +0000 TrovemberTROVE TURNS FIVE
Australia’s best known (and totally free) website, Trove turns five this month, and they are celebrating throughout the month with TROVEmber.

Five already, can you believe it?

There is no doubt that Trove has changed the way people research Australian history and genealogy. And oh boy when Trove happens to go down, the world simply comes to an end doesn’t it! Well, it does for  some people I know. ;-)

The announcement on their website says the following …

“You all thought the 11th month was called November. This year Trove turns five and so we’re taking over the month. Welcome to TROVEmber.

We are celebrating how Trove has influenced research, changed lives and entertained. We’ll also be sharing some thoughts about the future of Trove. You can read more about Trovember in our blog. Keep up to date with all things Trove by following us on Twitter, or sign up to our mailing list.”

So fellow Trovites (yes that IS a word now), in between all of your Troving (that is also a word now), take a moment to check out what other events that Trove has coming up for Trovember


While’ we’re on the subjeect of Trove, take a moment to think about all the hard work that people put in to make Trove what it is for us, and it is still free! I mean even the British Newspaper Archive isn’t free, so to say that we are being spoilt is an understatement.

But to keep it going, added to, and free they need our help, so are asking for you to donate if you can. They say …

If you love Trove, and are passionate about history, information and preserving our intellectual heritage, we invite you to join our community of supporters by donating to the Library’s Trove appeal. Your support will enable a worldwide audience to continue to uncover resources relating to Australia and Australians … for free.


For more about the Trove Appeal click here

support Trove

To get the best you can out of Trove, why not grab yourself a copy of expert genealogist Shauna Hicks’ book: Trove: Discover Genealogy Treasure in the National Library of Australia

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Dear Myrtle’s “Share A Memory” Contest is on Again Fri, 07 Nov 2014 06:12:18 +0000 Share a memory

For the third year running, Dear Myrtle is holding her “Share a Memory” contest. So if you have researched your family AND have a story that you’d love to share, well then, this contest is for you.

The objective is to …

“Create an intriguing object to tell a story about an ancestor, making it easier for the non-genealogists in the family to appreciate your mutual heritage.”

It’s a great objective isn’t it. And contest or no contest, we as researchers should be thinking of interesting ways to present our family history to non-genie family members. You never know, you might actually get them interested!

So not only do you get to be creative and share a family story, you can do it in the method that suits you:
– on a blog or web page posting for family members to view
– a video saved on your YouTube Channel
– an email you will send to your family members
– or a slide show your save on the web, say at Google Docs

And if that wasn’t enough to get you interested, Dear Myrtle is even giving away prizes. Really, really good ones too!

The deadline for entries is 30 NOVEMBER 2014, so be sure to get your entry in before then.

For more details about the whole contest, where to send details of your entry, what what the prizes are please visit Dear Myrtle’s blog.



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Inspiring Genealogy Blogs – September and October 2014 Fri, 07 Nov 2014 02:11:08 +0000 Inspiring Blogs 300September has been and gone, and so has October, and as I didn’t get to do a September Inspiring Genealogy Blogs post, I’m combining it with the October one.

I don’t know about you, but I learn a lot and get inspired from reading. And that’s why I choose to do these posts.

In this post I have a bumper lot of reading I for you. In them wee cover everthing from cleaning out a family members house, to hoarding, to why blog, to needing to be cautious with DNA testing, preserving home movies, online courses, conferences and timelines just to mention a few.

I know that I’ve mentioned before (each time) that I find that reading blog posts helps me keep up with the latest news, products as well as what’s happening in general in the world of genealogy. And if you happen to already follow me on Facebook, Twitter, and to some extent Google+, you already know that I like to share with you the interesting things I read.

Do Young Folks Have Enough Time For Genealogy?
Lee Drew poses an interesting question … “Do young folks have time for genealogy?” It’s a different question to one we’re used to which tends to be “How to get young folks interested in genealogy”, or “What will attract the younger generation to genealogy?”. It is true, life IS busy, and it doesn’t seem to be slowing down at all. For more on this interesting question read the full article …

Sorting Saturday: Cleaning Mom’s House
As I read this post that Wendy wrote on her All My Branches Genealogy blog, I found myself nodding along to it. For anyone that has been involved in cleaning out a relative’s house after they died, not to mention one that has lived in the same place for 50+ years, you’ll totally get what Wendy writes. For the full article …

Using Time Lines as a Family History Writing Tool
Diane writes about a using timelines as a tool to help with research. She gives a number of examples, and then shows us how she uses it to her advantage. Read the full article …

With Genetic Testing I Gave My Parents the Gift of Divorce
With DNA testing being all the rage these days, take a moment to read this article as you may want to think twice before ordering that kit. And are you really ready for what results might be found? Read the full article …

Getting Started to YouTube Your Family History
There is no doubt that technology is changing at a rapid rate, and unfortunately those old audio cassettes and VHS videos for most aren’t even playable anymore. In this post FamilySearch talks about converting your old family movies and making a private YouTube channel, one that you share with your family. Definitely something to think about. Read the full article …

A Beginners Guide to Newspaper Research for Genealogy
Kenneth Marks is an expert on researching newspapers. If you don’t believe me, check out his blog. For successful searching of newspapers you need to know the techniques on HOW to search. So take a moment to read this post he’s written, as you may just learn a new tip or two which will help you. Read the full article …

Postems on FreeBMD
Judy Webster wrote this post on Postems on FreeBMD, and in it she describes a strategy that has worked brilliantly for her. If anyone in your family tree was born, married or died in England or Wales from 1837 onwards, try it! Read the full article …

How to Use Pinterest for Genealogy
As the world of genealogy and also social media evolves, to ways to use them together changes to. And in this post Genealogy Girl Talks discusses using Pinterest for genealogy. She says “I started using Pinterest for my family’s genealogy and I love it! It’s a great way to organize the family photographs and documents found around the internet. Plus, as an added bonus, the link to the document and family photo is provided and you can easily share with family! There’s no need to save old family photos to your computer (and forgetting the source).” So if you’re interested to read more about why she uses Pinterest, read the full article …

Blogging Your Family History
You’ve all heard of a blog, and if you’re reading this you’re reading a blog. But do you know WHY people blog? Do you know how it can help you with your family history? And do you know how to get started making one? All these and more are answered in this post. Read the full article …

Confessions of a Genealogy Hoarder
Valerie makes a confession. She is a genealogy hoarder (though she’s far from being alone). For those of you who can understand all about genealogy hoarding, or those who want to learn to avoid it, be sure to read this post. Read the full article …

My Three Rs of Genealogy Research
You’ve all heard of the three Rs … reading, ‘riting and ‘rithmetic, which are all useful for everyone. But have you heard of the three Rs of genealogy? No? Well take a read of Pauleen’s post here, and they are very valid Rs indeed for every researcher. Read the full article …

5 Step to Proving Your Family History
The Armchair Genealogist, Lynn reminds us that “as family historians we often see ourselves as detectives, uncovering the past for future generations. However, as the family history detective it’s important for you to provide a strong case for your research, to be able to provide proof of your theories and back up that proof with quality evidence.” Read her 5 steps that you should do with your research. Read the full article …

Genealogy??? Family History???
Mary of the Roots & Stuff blog asks the question “Are Genealogy and Family History the same thing? Mostly but not always.” Mary writes that Tony Proctor addressed this in a recent blog post titled The Lineage Trap on his Parallax View blog.  He points out that for most people family history is as important as mere lineage. This is one that’ll get you thinking. Read the full article …

Online Classes Really Do Work
There are plenty of ways that you can increase your genealogical knowledge, and online courses is just one of them. Lee Drew is a fan of them, and teaches other about them – even the free ones. But others query the value of a free online class … well, have a read and see for yourself. Read the full article …

What if Genealogy Books Were Banned?
In this post that NGS wrote in September they mentioned that Banned Book Week was coming up. “Banned Books Week is an annual event celebrating the freedom to read. Held during the last week of September, it highlights the value of free and open access to information.” The question was then asked “What if genealogy books were banned?” … Read the full article …

How to Find the Father of an Illegitimate Child
I don’t there would be many researchers out there that doesn’t have an illegitimate child or two in their family somewhere. Frustratingly sometimes that can cause a brickwall. Yvette Hoitink has some fabulous advice for all who are wanting break down that brickwall, and find the father of an illegitimate child. Read the full article …

5 Reasons Why You Should Take a Genealogy Research Break
Have you ever got a bit jaded with your research? You find that you’re progressing and are losing enthusiasm? Kenneth Marks has done in the past. And he writes about the need to take a break from research. Read the full article …

One of the most powerful genealogical sentences I’ve read in a long time: “his real family isn’t his biological one”
Maria has shared this story written by Julia Belluz, and the impact that this one sentence has had on the family. Read the full article …

The Objects of Your Affections
Do you have an item, that although it takes up room and collects dust, you keep purely because it reminds you of a family member past? Natalie does. Or at least she did until her partner decided to give it away. It’s quite a story, and you can read the article here …

Gender & the Great War: The Myth of the ‘Superfluous Woman’
I found Suzie Grogan’s guest post on Emma Jolly’s ‘Genealogic’ blog, in this post Suzie’s discusses the myth of the ‘superflous woman’ which followed the Great War of 1914-18. By that she’s referring to the “army of spinsters left on the shelf following the deaths of more than 700,000 of the nation’s finest in the four years of fighting” … and the press referred to “the ‘millions’ for whom marriage had become an impossibility. Surely there were not enough men to go round?” It’s a war related topic that I actually hadn’t thought of before. Read the full article …

Connections at Conferences
This post was one I found though social media, and I’m glad that I did. Cari and I think along the same lines when it . She says “Genealogical conferences … are as much about reuniting with far-flung friends and making connections with new ones as they are about the wonderful educational opportunities. Over the years, I have made so many great friends by attending conferences and every time I attend, I make even more! So if you need any MORE reason to attend any upcoming genie events, be sure to read the full article …

Always Cite Your Sources and What does that Mean Anyway?
This post is of Ancestry’s Advanced Tips that they do from time to time. For anyone who has been researching for any length of time you certainly have heard about citing your sources, and hopefully you are doing it. Though no doubt when you started you were like everyone else, and just busy getting all the information you could without noting where it came from. Ancestry gives you two very good reasons on WHY you should cite your sources. Read the full article …

A Guide to Finding Your Missing Ancestors
Some may know Myko Clelland as the Dapper Historian, others may know him from findmypast as he’s part of their team. Here he gives readers a great guide to find your missing ancestors. And let’s face it, everyone of us has missing ancestors, so everyone should have a read of this. Read the full article …

Get out and go to Genealogy Conference, Events, Lectures or Whatever!
Donny is genealogist. In his own words he’s “mainly been a heads down do-it-yourself sort of genealogical researcher.” He’d looked at attending events in the past, but hadn’t actually taken the plunge until recently and attended an Irish themed event held in Boston where John Grenham spoke. Now he’s a convert to the value of attending talks by knowledgable speakers, as using his tips he’s discovered so much about his great grandfather. He finishes by saying “Would I have come to these discoveries if I didn’t attend Mr. Grenhams presentation? I am not sure, but I do know that I discovered family information sooner which allow me to spend more time on tracing Patrick’s sibling’s lines. So get out and to go some Genealogy conference, events, lectures, or whatever!.” Wise words I say! Read the full article …

Happy reading! :-)


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Canadian Headstones Website Hits the 1 Million Photographs Mark Wed, 29 Oct 2014 23:19:43 +0000 Logo - Canada HeadstonesI first introduced you to the website a couple of years ago. In that earlier post I wrote …

The aim of the Canadian Headstones project is to capture digital images and the complete transcription of  headstones of our ancestors. Time and vandalism have an effect of headstones so it it vital that they are recorded now – before more are lost.

Last week, Canada’s primary website for cemetery headstones hit the amazing figure of ONE MILLION photographs on their site! One million is a huge number in any context, but when you’re talking about photographs, that’s a LOT of photographs even for the avid photographer!

Of course they have thousands and thousands of people who have uploaded headstone photographs to their site, and for that they are eternally grateful, as these people help make the site what it is.

So from us down here in Australia a HUGE congrats to everyone involved with the Canadian Headstone Photos Project – those that manage it, and those who volunteer and upload photos to it – its a spectacular effort, and keep up the fabulous work! Every photograph of a headstone is helping that headstone be preserved. Every transcription that is uploaded is making it easier for someone to find a connection to their family.

You can keep up-to-date with the latest happenings from CanadianHeastones by following them on Facebook.

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“Discovering Anzacs” Website Launched Wed, 29 Oct 2014 08:06:18 +0000 Discovering Anzacs

Yesterday was a huge day for Australian and New Zealand military history, as Australia’s Governor-General, Sir Peter Cosgrove launched the National Archives of Australia’s brand new website “Discovering Anzacs”.

Photo courtesy of the National Archives of Australia

Photo courtesy of the National Archives of Australia

Developed as part of the Anzac Centenary, the website is a result of a partnership between the National Archives of Australia and Archives New Zealand, and includes digitised service records of every Australian and New Zealander who served in WWI and many from the Boer War.

Containing the records of more than 600,000 people including 140,000 New Zealanders, some who were involved in the conflicts, and others who played a role at home or behind the scenes. You’ll find many of the lesser known records actually show what was happening on the home front. Also included are the original service records of the army nurses who were portrayed as characters in the recent ABC series Anzac Girls.

Discovering Anzacs website Discovering Anzacs homepage

Now the National Archives of Australia is after your help. They have scanned the records, put them online and indexed them, but now you can help out by transcribing them and adding photographs and stories those listed on the site.
For more information about contributing to the Discovering Anzacs site, be sure to visit the About and Help sections of their website.
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The Winners of NLAs Community Heritage Grants 2014 Wed, 29 Oct 2014 01:29:29 +0000

grant moneyThe National Library of Australia’s (NLA) Community Heritage Grants (GHG) program provides grants of up to $15,000 to community organisations such as libraries, archives, museums, genealogical and historical societies, multicultural and Indigenous groups Australia-wide.

The grants are provided to assist with the preservation of locally owned, but nationally significant collections of materials that are publicly accessible including artefacts, letters, diaries, maps, photographs, and audio visual material.

The winners of the successful grant applications for 2014 have just been announced, and this year there   are 73 grants being awarded, totalling $386,577.

Congratulations to each and every winner. The money will be put to good use preserving a lot of history in various ways.

Australian Capital Territory

Organisation Amount Project
Manning Clark House


Environmental control and collection storage consultation

New South Wales

Organisation Amount Project
(Administration of Norfolk Island) Norfolk Island Museum


 Significance assessment
Adaminaby Snowy Scheme Collection Inc (Snowy Scheme Museum)


Preservation needs assessment
Albury City Council – (Albury Regional Art Gallery)


Preservation needs assessment of the Indigenous collection and care of photographs training
Coonamble Shire Council


Archival storage materials for  the Neville Owen collection
Dean and Chapter Christ Church Cathedral Newcastle


Significance assessment
dLux Media Arts Inc


Significance assessment of dLux MediaArts archive
Fairfield City Library Service


Significance assessment of the Fairfield City Library Local Studies collection
Liverpool City Library


Preservation needs assessment of the Liverpool Heritage Library collection
National Art School


Conservation activities on works in the NAS collection
National Institute of Dramatic Art


 Significance assessment
National Rugby League Limited


Significance assessment of the Rugby League Museum collection
Old Dubbo Gaol


 Significance assessment
Penrith Performing & Visual Arts Ltd


Significance Assessment of the Penrith Regional Gallery & The Lewers Bequest collection
Pentecostal Heritage Centre


Significance assessment and collection management training
Port Macquarie Historical Society Inc


Conservation treatments
Randwick City Council


Preservation needs assessment of La Perouse Museum collection
Royal Australian Historical Society


Preservation needs assessment of the library collection
RSL LifeCare


Significance assessment of RSL LifeCare War Museum collection
Sulphide Street Railway & Historical Museum Trust


Archival storage materials
Tamworth Historical Society Inc


Significance assessment of the King, Australian Agricultural Co and Peel River Land & Mineral Co collections
The City of Liverpool and District Historical Society Inc


Preservation needs assessment
The Performance Space Ltd


Preservation needs assessment of the archives
Tumut & District Historical Society Inc


Preservation needs assessment

Northern Territory

Organisation Amount Project
Injalak Arts & Crafts Association Inc


Significance assessment and preservation needs assessment of the Injalak Arts Community heritage collection of Gunbalanya and training
Ngaanyatjarra Media (Aboriginal Corporation)


Significance assessment of the NG Media archive


Organisation Amount Project
Cairns and District Chinese Association Inc


Lit Sung Goong Decorative Panels conservation treatment
Cherbourg Historical Precinct Group Inc


Preservation needs assessment of the Ration Shed Museum and training
Drug Arm Australasia


Significance assessment of the Drug Arm Archive collection
Miles and District Historical Society Inc


Preservation needs assessment of Miles Historical Village Museum collection
Queensland Maritime Museum Association


 Significance assessment
The Corporation of the Synod of the Diocese of Brisbane


 Preservation needs assessment of the archives and collection management training
The Institution of Engineers Australia (Qld Division)


Preservation needs assessment of the archives
Yarrabah Aboriginal Shire Council


Preservation of the Embroidered Cloth, Menmuny Museum

South Australia

Organisation Amount Project
Coober Pedy Historical Society Inc


Preservation needs assessment of the Coober Pedy Historical Society collection
District Council of Robe on behalf of the Robe Local History Group


Significance assessment of the Robe History Collection
History Trust of South Australia(trading as History SA)


Caring for collections training
History Trust of South Australia (trading as History SA)


Digitisation for preservation and access training
John McDouall Stuart Society Inc


Preservation needs assessment
Lutheran Archives


Conservation activities and archival storage materials
Peterborough History Group SA Inc


Preservation needs assessment of the Peterborough Times office and contents
Pichi Richi Railway Preservation Society Inc


Significance assessment
St John Ambulance Aust SA Inc


Archival storage materials


Organisation Amount Project
Friends of the Launceston Mechanics’ Institute Inc


 Significance assessment
Furneaux Historical Research Association Inc


 Training, conservation materials and data loggers
University of Tasmania


 Significance assessment


Organisation Amount Project
Australian Railway Historical Society Victorian Division Inc


Significance assessment of the archive
Benalla Historical Society Inc


Significance assessment
Bendigo Chinese Association Museum Inc


Collection management software training
Burrinja Cultural Centre


Significance Assessment of the McLeod Gift collection
Catholic Diocese of Sandhurst


 Archival storage materials and equipment
Dandenong Ranges Music Council Inc


Significance assessment of the music collection
Deaf Children Australia


 Significance assessment
Emerald Museum


Significance assessment of the Nobelius collection
Gippstown Reserve Board of Management


Preservation needs assessment of the Dr. J.M. Andrew and Andrew Family collection
Ken Lawrence Foundation [trading as the KenDon Museum]


Purchase and installation of shelving
Knox Historical Society Inc


Assessing significance training
Mission to Seafarers Victoria


Preservation needs assessment
Museum of Indonesian Arts Inc


Significance assessment of MIA collection
Open Channel Co-operative Ltd


Significance assessment
Robert O’Hara Burke Memorial Museum


Conservation of the Burke Museum’s terrestrial globe
Royal Historical Society of Victoria


Significance assessment of the manuscript collection
Sovereign Hill Museums Association


Significance assessment
Student Community Television (RMITV)


Significance assessment of RMITV tapes
Tennis Australia


Significance assessment of the heritage collections
The Jewish Museum of Australia


Preservation needs assessment
Warragul and District Historical Society


Significance assessment

Western Australia

Organisation Amount Project
Bus Preservation Society of Western Australia Inc


Preservation needs assessment
Fremantle History Society Inc


Significance assessment for Deckchair Theatre archives
JewishCare WA Inc


Preservation needs assessment of the archives
Shire of Leonora


Compactus for the Gwalia Ghost Town & Museum archive collection
Swan Guildford Historical Society Inc


Shelving and archival storage materials
The Perth Diocesan Trustees


Archival storage materials
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South Australia’s 2015 About Time History Month Open for Applications Mon, 27 Oct 2014 11:44:16 +0000 logo - About Time 2015About Time is South Australia’s history festival! Since 2011 the month of May has been a celebration of South Australia’s history which is showcased through hundreds of events ranging from talks to tours; walks to workshops; and exhibitions to special events.

2014 was a HUGE year for About Time, with over 500 events being held throughout the month. But with 2015 being the 5th year of About Time history month, I bet it’ll be even bigger.

The team at About Time are organised folk, and have just opened their website for applications for events for next year. So if you, your group or organisation already has something planned for May 2015, you can get it listed now.

You can register your even online, or send it through the mail. For details check out

Online registrations close Friday 6 February 2015, and Email and postal registrations close Friday 30 January 2015.

To keep up to date with the latest from them, be sure to follow them via the news on their website, on Facebook or Twitter.

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Unlock the Past Guide Books Go International Thu, 23 Oct 2014 00:25:52 +0000 Unlock the Past guide booksOur sister-company Unlock the Past recently celebrated their fifth birthday, and in that time they have hosted numerous genealogy Expos and Roadshows around Australia, and have cemented their place in the world of genealogy cruising – having already run 5 of them, with another 8 already in the works, but they have developed a wide range of guide books.

The guide books are what I want to talk about here.

What started out as a need for some genealogy books that relate to Australians and Australian research, has now grown to be more than 50 titles.

Of those 50 or so titles, most are written by Australians, but there is a growing number of overseas authors who have offered to write books for Unlock the Past as well. With the number of books increasing, the topics covered by them has also increased, and no longer covers just Australian research and records, but also books relating to British, Irish, Scottish and German research, as well as numerous “General” titles like citing sources, preserving oral history, how to preserve your family heirlooms, how to read old handwriting, and what old medical ailments are just to name a few.

All of these books have been produced by us and posted out to customers, and while we’re happy to send orders to anywhere in the world – there was growing need for them to be available internationally through other means as unfortunately the freight from Australia isn’t cheap!

So Unlock the Past have made their books available through various new sources. and partnerships

Firstly for those in the UK you can now purchase the Unlock the Past guide books from My History, and for those in Canada and the US you can obtain copies from Global Genealogy. Each of these companies will be printing copies of the Unlock the Past guide books themselves, which will not only save time and freight cost for you.

These titles are also available as ebooks for instant download for viewing on your desktop computer, laptop and mobile devices. You can find these on the Genealogy Ebooks website ( And of course they are cheaper too.

My History is easily one of UKs largest genealogy outlets, and one of the busiest, as they attend events most weeks of the year. Apart from offering a large chart printing service, they also sell genealogy software, data CDs, archival products, and now the Unlock the Past guide books as well as others.

Global Genealogy in Canada have been around for a very long time, and one of the few true genealogy retails stores left in the world (kind of like us). Largely catering to the North American market, they sell books, data CDs, archival supplies as well as charts.

Both Gould Genealogy and Unlock the Past are excited about these partnerships, and we do hope that you find these books of interest.

For the full list of Unlock the Past guide books click here.

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Tasmanian Name Index (including Convict and BDM Records) Wed, 22 Oct 2014 17:31:19 +0000 map - Tasmania old 1837It was about eighteen months ago that I announced that FamilySearch had partnered with LINC Tasmania (formerly Archives Office of Tasmania) to bring us the original images of the Tasmanian Birth, Death, and Marriage records.

As with many records that are on FamilySearch, these were images only, and weren’t indexed – at least initially.

This was huge news to those with Tasmanian connections (myself included), and I was blown away by it all. I also had no problem with the idea of paging through images to look for my ancestors, afterall I could do it at from home and at whatever time of day or I choose.

Now I have even bigger news, and that is that LINC Tasmania have created an index to not only their BDM records, but a whole heap of others on their own website too. Convict records, passenger arrival and departures, divorces, naturalisations, wills and more!

So this is BIG, BIG, BIG news for those with Tasmanian connections.

The records covered by the Tasmanian Names Index are:

- Arrivals (19th Century). Passengers and ships arriving, mainly in Hobart. Contains surnames A-K, L-Z to be added.
– Births (1803-1933). People born in Tasmania including some baptisms collected by the Registrar General (1900-1933 baptisms only).
– Census (1837-1857). Householders in the 1840s and 1850s, not complete for all districts.
– Convict permissions to marry (1829-1857). Convicts applying to marry free people or other convicts.
– Convicts (1803-1893). Convicts transported to Tasmania and those convicted locally through the convict system.
– Deaths (1803-1933). People who died in Tasmania including some burial records collected by the – Registrar General (1900-1933 burials only).
– Departures (1817-1867). People leaving Tasmanian ports, mainly Launceston.
– Divorces (1861-1920). Petitions for divorce in the Tasmanian Supreme Court.
– General Index (1818-1934). A range of records, including people’s names and subjects.
– Inquests (1828-1930). Inquests into people’s deaths.
– Marriages (1803-1899). People who married in Tasmania.
– Naturalisations (1835-1905). People applying to become citizens.
– Wills (1824-1989). Wills and letters of administration of estates registered for probate.

While many records are digitised, copies of those that aren’t can be obtained by completing the online copy request form at LINC Tasmania.

Here’s the link to the search page (you might want to bookmark this one) …

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