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Showing posts from January, 2012

Week 4: Free offline Genealogy Tools

Without a doubt my most favourite offline genealogy tools are public libraries!

My husband laid the law down a few years ago about my spending on books.  He is quite right of course...there are only so many books one can store in one's home and we have surely exceeded our quota.

The other point is that often I will buy a book and it's not what I thought it was going to be or I only use it once and then it sits there collecting dust.  So why not go to your local library and check out their genealogy collection.?

Genealogy books can be found under 929 in the Dewey Decimal system.

But more importantly libraries are about so much more than books.

There's magazines...now there's a saving if ever there was one.  Australians are famous for their consumption of magazines.  Check out the ABS statistics here.  Here's a way to save money AND the environment.  Some popular titles are Your Family Tree and  The Australian Family Tree Connection.

Libraries have DVDs too.  You can chec…

The Bucket List - Geneameme

Happy domesticity (1936) Real photo postcard. Postally unused. Found at the Camberwell Markets, Melbourne, Australia. From Pellethepoet on Flickr
Jill from Geniaus suggested this meme.  Here are the guidelines: The list should be annotated in the following manner: Things you would like to do or find: Bold Type Things you haven’t done or found and don’t care to: plain type You are encouraged to add extra comments after each item

The genealogy conference I would most like to attend is...This may seem a little ethnocentric but I would like to attend the 13th Australasian Congress on Genealogy and Heraldry so I can catch up with old friends in Adelaide.
The genealogy speaker I would most like to hear and see is...It’s a toss up between Jenny Higgins and Paul Nixon.  Jenny works at the National Library of Australia and I am really interested in the family history reference training courses she has developed for National reader services library staff.  Paul works for findmypast and also ha…

Australia Day 2012 - Wealth for Toil: Harriet Rowland (nee Conner)

Springsure State School student group, 1884
John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland
The lovely Shelley from Twigs of Yore came up with this great meme for Australia Day.

Shelley proposed the following:

Choose someone who lived in Australia (preferably one of your ancestors) and tell us how they toiled. Your post should include:
    What was their occupation?     What information do you have about the individual’s work, or about the occupation in general?    The story of the person, focussing on their occupation; or    The story of the occupation, using the person as an example.   I chose my great grand aunt - Harriet Rowland (nee Conner)

Harriet is pretty emblematic of how I tend to jump around in family history.  She is not a direct ancestor as such - she is in fact the older sister of my paternal great-grandfather.  Of course I never knew her.  When I grew up the Conners I knew had always lived in Sydney, but there were rumours of family in Queensland.  When I moved to Brisban…

Week 3 – Free Online Genealogy Tools

Image by asenat29 from Flickr under Creative Commons Licence

Free online genealogy tools are like gifts from above. Which one are you most thankful for? How has it helped your family history experience?
I do like a list.  I do.  I do.

A couple of weeks ago, Genealogy in Time released a list of Top 100 Most Popular GenealogyWebsites.

They were quite specific about what they would and would not class as a genealogy website. For example:
NOT
Library, museum and general archive websites. University websites. Wide-ranging government websites. General knowledge websites (such as Wikipedia). Sniff.

Well, my list is going to include a library website.  And I bet every red-blooded, Australian Genealogist knows which site I'm going to pick.  Yes.  Dear old Trove.   If you haven't heard from your genealogist friend recently, you can bet pounds to peanuts they're buried up to their neck in lubberly newspaper articles.  I thought I knew everything about my husband's great-grandfat…

52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy - Week 2 - Paid Online Genealogy Tools

Amy Coffin of the WeTree blog came up with a series of weekly blogging prompts for each week of 2012.

This week's prompt is this question: "Which paid genealogy tool do you appreciate the most? What special features put it at the top of your list? How can it help others with their genealogy research?"  I'm a bit confused as to whether the tool has to be an online tool or any tool that you've paid for - so I'm going to choose two!!

Okay what do I pay for and use in the way of genealogy tools?  I pay for an online subscription to Find My Past (Australia) which I have been very impressed with in the first month or so that I have been using it.

I have just subscribed to the iPad version of the Inside History magazine.  It's probably a bit too early to judge yet, but once again I love the design and layout of the magazine.  It is very visually appealing and enticing.  And of course, the content is great too.

I pay for and useFamily Tree Maker as my software…

Tuesday's Tip: It's all Greek to me...

Photo used under Creative Commons licence courtesy of archer10 (Dennis) on Flickr

And yes for all you Aussies out there, I do realise it is Wednesday - I'm just keeping time with our colleagues in the Northern Hemisphere.  So today's blog post is stimulated by Geneablogger's daily blog prompt.  It's also a bit of professional practice reflection so I'd be grateful for your comments.


"What advice would you give to another genealogist or family historian, especially someone just starting out? Remember when you were new to genealogy? Wasn’t it great to find tips and tricks that worked for others? Post your best tips at your genealogy blog on Tuesday’s Tip. This series was suggested by Susan Petersen of Long Lost Relatives and, in fact, this has been an ongoing series by Lynn Palermo at The Armchair Genealogist and by Miriam Robbins Midkiff at AnceStories: The Stories of My Ancestors."
Yesterday (which was Tuesday for us in Oz) a patron came into the library…

Amenuensis Monday: Will - Edward Daw of Tingalpa

Photo of Edward and Alice Sophia Daw courtesy of Alan Gibbs
This story is about my husband's side of the family.  Edward Daw is not a direct relation.  He is the brother of my husband's great-great-grandfather - Thomas Daw - or in other words his 2nd great grand uncle.  Having said that, he was much loved by Thomas' grandchildren for helping them in their early adult years when they were trying to make their own way, without the assistance of their father or grandfather. 
Edward was a dairyman at Tingalpa, Brisbane in Queensland, Australia.  Thomas, his brother, was a butcher by trade.They were the youngest of five children born of William Daw and Mary Anstey of Bradninch, Devon, England.
We decided to obtain Edward's will to try and find out a bit more about this kind man who provided a sulky for my husband's grandather's wedding and who helped the family out financially when my husband's grandmother was ill.
We obtained a copy of the will from Queenslan…

Black Sheep Sunday

This is my great-grandmother Kate Amelia Forfar (nee Ellis) 1872 - 1905
She and her husband - her second husband - Walter William Forfar have led me and my relations a bit of a merry dance over the years.

Earlier this year I had a bit of a breakthrough using one of my favourite tools of late i.e. Trove.

Well, it wasn't really a breakthrough - if anything, the discovery has just led to more questions.

We're not quite sure when Walter and Kate got married, if at all.

Let's go back a bit.  First of all, Kate married Alfred H Doe 4 April 1896 at the Congregational Church at Woollahra at the age of 24 according to the NSW BDM Index. I've just ordered the certificate.  Kerching.

There is a marriage notice that you can see on Trove here.

Kate and Alfred were granted a divorce in 1902, some six years later as per the notice in the Sydney Morning Herald here.

What is interesting is that by that time Kate already had two children with Walter William Forfar and the twins (one …

Family Tree Blogs to follow

Just like tree frogs hitching a ride on bananas, it is sometimes easy to get lost or distracted whilst surfing the internet.

If you find a blog you like, it is great to be able to follow it or subscribe to RSS feeds and check on it on a regular basis.

I follow and subscribe to a number of family tree blogs such as Anglo Celtic Connections, Chris Paton's Walking in Eternity, GeneWebinars, Roots and Rambles,The Armchair Genealogist, The Turning of Generations, Geniaus and Family History Across the Seas.

Each blog has its own merits but the ones that appeals to me the most - or the ones that I find myself most often reading are Geniaus and Family History Across the Seas

I'm not quite sure why that is...maybe it is because they are written by Australian women and so I identify with their struggles and also am inspired by their passion.

Geniaus aka Jill Ball is very excited by new technology and Web 2.0 and her enthusiasm is positively infectious!

Cassmob is a very disciplined b…

Jumping In

Graceful Tree Frog - Creative Commons Licence to teejaybee on flickr
Hello and welcome to my new blog!

I have spent many hours sucking my teeth and trying to come up with a meaningful title/mascot for my new blog that will give some insight into my background and approach to the absorbing hobby of family history.

I live in Brisbane, Australia and the Graceful Treefrog is the faunal emblem of Brisbane.

Whilst I don't want you to think that I jump to conclusions in my family history research, it is fair to say that I probably do tend to jump around a bit in terms of location. My husband's and my own family tree can take me anywhere from Brisbane to Barbados and to Britain with a few other places in between.

Growing up I enjoyed watching The Muppets with my mother and laughing at dear earnest Kermit and all the other crazy characters such as Miss Piggy. I hope that I can be as earnest, conscientious and sensitive as Kermit in my reporting of family history research.

Sometimes I…