holly1Today is Christmas Eve, and it seems like as good a time as any to look back over the happenings of 2009. I’m not talking about the world events, TV does that well enough … I’m talking about the changes that have happened at Gould Genealogy & History, as well as Australian genealogy in general over the past 12 months.

Firstly, for us it has been a year of a number of exciting developments.

We are in the learning stages of social media, but we now have our blog (this one) and you can find us on Facebook and Twitter. Hopefully we will get better at it over time.

Another change is that we have now combined our Archive Digital Books Australasia (formerly Archive CD Books Australia) into our Gould Genealogy & History company. There is really no difference for customers, except that you can now find all titles produced under the Archive Digital Books Australasia name on the Gould website, in its own category.

A small change, well, not so much a change, as an addition was that we have added an “Antiquarian Books” to our category list, for those books that we sell off. There is currently only one title in the list, but we do expect to add more throughout next year.

We have also seen a fairly significant increase over the year in the number of scrapbooking products (particularly papers) that we list. It is so good to see more heritage and family tree themed scrapbooking products coming from numerous publishers.

2009 saw the release of new versions of RootsMagic, Family Historian, Family Historian Aus/NZ, Family Tree Maker 2010 Aus/NZ … and I’m pretty sure a new The Master Genealogist is on it’s way soon.

One other big new thing was the printing and posting of our first printed catalogue in 7 years. It’s not an entire product list of what we sell, but it is a good selection. This was received well by customers, and it might be something we do more of in the future.

With the release of our catalogue we also announced that we now have a loyalty rewards scheme. A full blog post will be done on this later.

During the year we have had a few staff members leave, and we have had new staff come. We will put a page on our website with photos of each staff member soon.

Two other big changes are the new companies that have started. Unlock the Past, and Family Photo Book.

Unlock the Past started off as a collaboration between Shauna Hicks History Enterprises and Gould Genealogy & History in wanting to attend and talk at more genealogy/history events, as well as promoting genealogy and history to a wider audience. It has grown from there in its short existence already.

Family Photo Book is a collaboration between an Adelaide based printing company and Gould Genealogy & History. Photo books seem to be a popular way to present your photographs, as opposed to the traditional album method. While you can use them to create whatever you wish (pictorial memoirs of holidays, family, weddings etc.) they are also ideal for creating a memoir of someone’s life, or a pictorial history of several generations of your family. I’ve started my own, starting from my great grandfather who arrived in Australia in 1905, and aim to follow each line down to current generations.

As far as genealogy in Australia goes, GenealogyWise, a new genealogy social networking site was launched earlier this year, and there is an active Australian group on there. More Australian content was added to the Ancestry.com.au and WorldVitalRecords.com.au sites, and the National Library of Australia’s Australian Newspapers site, just keeps getting better.

There is a growing trend for societies, archives and other groups and individual genealogists and historians to be on Facebook, Twitter and blogs (see our list of Australian genealogy/history blogs) – so if you’re looking to keep up with the latest happenings from various people, places, groups etc. become a fan on Facebook, or a follower on Twitter.

Thank you for your support over the past year. I do believe that there will be even more changes in Australian genealogy and Gould Genealogy & History in 2010 … so stay tuned!

From all of us at Gould Genealogy & History, we wish you a wonderful Christmas and a safe and happy New Year.