Friday, 18 August 2017

Researching Abroad roadshow report - Parramatta

We’ve just finished the Sydney part of our roadshow tour, with both Dirk Weissleder and I speaking at the Parramatta RSL, along with Unlock the Past’s Eric and Rosemary Kopittke, Kerry Farmer on DNA, and the Society of Australian Genealogists’ very own Heather Garnsey (see http://www.unlockthepast.com.au/events/researching-abroad-british-isles-european-ancestors-sydney). We had a massively warm reception - a huge thanks to all who attended! Along the way I managed to also catch up with a recent client, whose research report I emailed just a few weeks back prior to my leaving Scotland for the tour, so it was great to catch up and discuss the next steps ahead to continue the research. The following are pictures from the event…







This was my third visit to Parramatta’s RSL (an RSL is an armed forces veterans association), and I decided on this occasion that I actually needed to see some of the place, as in the past our visits have essentially been genealogical talk based hit and run raids! At lunchtime on my second day there I decided to leave the RSL building and visit the nearby Old Government House, where former New South Wales governor Lachlan MacQuarrie (originally from Ulva, by Mull, Scotland) lived for eleven years with his wife Elizabeth, from 1810-1821. Parramatta was essentially where the first major New South Wales convict colony was established in 1788, and the building itself had seen many changes and extensions before and during MacQuarrie’s time.

The following are some pictures of the location, well worth a visit if you come to Sydney.








Thanks to all who made us so welcome – next stop, Melbourne…!

Chris

My next 5 week Scottish Research Online course commences Sept 11th 2017 - details at www.pharostutors.com/details.php?coursenumber=102. For my genealogy guide books, visit http://britishgenes.blogspot.co.uk/p/my-books.html, whilst details of my research service are at www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk. Further content is also published daily on The GENES Blog Facebook page at www.facebook.com/BritishGENES.

Thursday, 17 August 2017

Scottish Research Online course starts Sept 11th

Just a reminder that my next Scottish Research Online course starts on September 11th, with plenty of spaces still available!

The course is five weeks long, and entirely taught online - for full details, and to book if interested, please visit https://www.pharostutors.com/details.php?coursenumber=102.

Hopefully see you there!

Chris

My next 5 week Scottish Research Online course commences Sept 11th 2017 - details at www.pharostutors.com/details.php?coursenumber=102. For my genealogy guide books, visit http://britishgenes.blogspot.co.uk/p/my-books.html, whilst details of my research service are at www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk. Further content is also published daily on The GENES Blog Facebook page at www.facebook.com/BritishGENES. O

Tuesday, 15 August 2017

Visit to the Society of Australian Genealogists

The Unlock the Past Researching Abroad roadshow has arrived back in Australia, with our next stop being Sydney. We arrived from Auckland on Monday, with talks scheduled for Tuesday and Wednesday at the RSL Club in Paramatta (see www.unlockthepast.com.au/events/researching-abroad-british-isles-european-ancestors-sydney), and so with a day in hand to catch our breaths after a busy weekend in New Zealand, we did a little sight seeing in the city!

As part of our wanderings, we were able to visit the headquarters of the Society of Australian Genealogists (www.sag.org.au) on Kent Street, where we were kindly given a tour by Heather Garnsey of the building. The history of the building is itself fascinating, in that was not originally built where it now stands, but was in fact erected near the site of the original Parliament House building for New South Wales by Colonial Architect Mortimer Lewis in 1849. After periods as a private residence, Parliamentary Library and headquarters for the Country Party, it was dismantled to make way for the new Parliament House in 1975 and relocated to the current site stone by stone. Since 1978 the Society of Australian Genealogists has occupied the premises as part of a fifty year lease on the property.

We were shown various facilities within the building, but one of my fave finds was a bookcase of journals from family history societies across the world, all neatly bound in various brightly coloured bindings. It’s the kind of thing I would love to have in my house, rather than the sprawl of magazines I currently have in every nook and cranny of my office! The amount of information locked away in old family history journals is immense, and one of the things Heather discussed how little indexing there had been done of the journals in the past – a project perhaps waiting to happen if someone has an afternoon or three hundred to spare over the next few years! Here are a few pics from the society's premises to give you a flavour...











Thanks to Alan Phillips for taking us to the society’s premises, and to Heather for her time in showing us around. For the rest of the day Dirk and I managed to walk from one end of the harbour bridge to the other, to visit the Sydney Opera House, and to see much of the CBD and the historic area of the Rocks. Later today we kick off with the roadshow, which I will report on in due course! In the meantime, here are a few more pics…!








For more on the Unlock the Past roadshow, please visit www.unlockthepast.com.au/events/researching-abroad-finding-british-isles-and-european-ancestors.


Chris

My next 5 week Scottish Research Online course commences Sept 11th 2017 - details at www.pharostutors.com/details.php?coursenumber=102. For my genealogy guide books, visit http://britishgenes.blogspot.co.uk/p/my-books.html, whilst details of my research service are at www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk. Further content is also published daily on The GENES Blog Facebook page at www.facebook.com/BritishGENES.

Sunday, 13 August 2017

Auckland Family History Expo - report

I've just spent the last three days in Auckland, New Zealand, for the Auckland Family History Expo, a main event of the Kiwi based Family History Month celebrations - and what an event! Organised by Seonaid Lewis and her team at Auckland City Libraries, in partnership with the New Zealand Society of Genealogists, the event started with an opening evening gathering on Friday, followed by two full days of talks and workshops, as well as the 'shopfloor' display of exhibitors and vendors. I gave seven talks in total including the opening keynote on Friday, and also held a workshop with a group of small but perfectly formed beginners key to learn the basics of UK and Irish family history research! In addition I had many one to ones with folk seeking specific advice on brick wall problems.

During the weekend I got to meet many new friends, including Andy Fenton, managing director of New Zealand Micrographics (www.micrographics.co.nz), genealogist Fiona Brooker (www.memoriesintime.co.nz), Kae Lewis, who has created a database of Cork based Protestants from 1650-1850 at www.CorkRecords.com, and many more. In addition I managed to catch up with many current friends, not least the magnificent Jan Gow QSM from Beehive Books!

A great event, some great memories to take away, and all kudos to Seonaid and her team for a superbly run event! Today I head to Sydney, where Dirk and I will be speaking at Parammata oer the next two days - details at http://www.unlockthepast.com.au/events/researching-abroad-british-isles-european-ancestors-sydney.

Thanks Auckland, and in particular to my wonderful hosts for the event, Bryn and Lindsay Smith! Some pics from the event...















My next 5 week Scottish Research Online course commences Sept 11th 2017 - details at www.pharostutors.com/details.php?coursenumber=102. For my genealogy guide books, visit http://britishgenes.blogspot.co.uk/p/my-books.html, whilst details of my research service are at www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk. Further content is also published daily on The GENES Blog Facebook page at www.facebook.com/BritishGENES.

Thursday, 10 August 2017

State Library of Queensland visit

I have just spent a wonderful few days in Brisbane to help kick off the Unlock the Past roadshow, entitled Researching Abroad. On Tuesday and Wednesday we had over a 140 people in attendance to listen to talks from myself, Dirk Weissleder, Helen Smith, Geoff Doherty from Genealogical Society of Queensland, Tony and Ann Swain from Queensland Family History Society, and Kirsten Perris from the State Library of Queensland.

Yesterday (Thursday), Rosemary and Eric Kopittke very kindly took us on a visit to the State Library of Queensland (www.slq.qld.gov.au), where we once again caught up with Kirsten, who gave us a brief overview of the family history resources at the library, including microfilm copies of newspapers to the present day, digitised newspapers and other resources via TROVE (http://trove.nla.gov.au), and considerably more. I was incredibly impressed with the set-up, and let's face it, with Brisbane as a whole - what a wonderful place to live and to carry out research, and not just because its winter is like my Scottish summer!!!  Thanks to everyone there for the wonderful hospitality, I'll hopefully be back again soon one day!

Next up, we are currently en route to Auckland for the Family History Expo over the weekend, which I am looking forward to immensely, this being only my second ever visit to New Zealand. In the meantime, here are some images from our state library visit yesterday!















Chris

My next 5 week Scottish Research Online course commences Sept 11th 2017 - details at www.pharostutors.com/details.php?coursenumber=102. For my genealogy guide books, visit http://britishgenes.blogspot.co.uk/p/my-books.html, whilst details of my research service are at www.ScotlandsGreatestStory.co.uk. Further content is also published daily on The GENES Blog Facebook page at www.facebook.com/BritishGENES.