17 October 2012

No.18 (genealogy worldwide)

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  • Queensland Births, Deaths and Marriages:  Digital images of historical registers.

  • Gazetteer of British Place Names:  This exhaustive Place Name Index to Great Britain, with more than 50,000 entries, lists the historic county and the main administrative areas in which each place lies. Read the notes before using the Gazetteer.

  • Society of Australian Genealogists manuscripts index:  It is worthwhile checking this online index periodically. In the Primary Records Collection I found handwritten genealogical notes provided by my great-great-grandfather's sister in about 1900. Without those notes I would still be stuck on 'Thomas WEBSTER, born London c.1824'.

  • FindMyPast:  (UPDATED)  It is now possible to buy a Worldwide subscription to FindMyPast through any of their sites.

Revenue from ads goes to Kiva

27 August 2012

No.17 (genealogy UK, Ireland, USA, Canada)

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  • LostCousins:  The LostCousins site is currently completely free. Until early Tuesday 28th August Australian time, or midnight 27th Greenwich Mean Time, you can search and make contact with any living relatives that the search reveals, without paying for a subscription. LostCousins now caters for the 1940 USA census as well as USA 1880; Canada 1881; England & Wales 1841, 1881, 1911; Ireland 1911; Scotland 1881. Be sure to enter your blood relatives and relatives by marriage as well as direct ancestors.  (I tried to share that news earlier, but my wireless Internet connection suddenly stopped working and was out of action for a long time.)

  • Guide to London Ancestors:  FamilySearch has a new free guide with articles on each of London's 109 historic parishes, including descriptions of many records available online. Guides are also being compiled for the Greater London counties of Essex, Kent, Middlesex and Surrey.

5 July 2012

No.16 (genealogy worldwide)

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  • Family history talks:  I have updated the list of family history talks that I will be giving. Venues already confirmed are Cardwell (next week), Wongaling Beach, Innisfail and Tully (the following week), Coffs Harbour (late 2012), Sydney (early 2013), and Biloela, Moura, Taroom and Theodore (April 2013).

  • Qld marriage indexes:  You can now search Queensland marriage indexes up to 1937 on the Internet - but don't forget that the indexes right up to 1939 are available on microfiche at Qld State Archives and in some libraries. Annotations on Queensland's State electoral rolls may provide clues to marriages after 1939.

  • UK newspapers:  Audrey Collins has a new page with links to genealogy sources including hard-to-find UK newspaper sites.

  • Ancestry searches:  If you put too much information in the search form, a poor match may appear higher on the list than a perfect match. What does it take to get a good result from Ancestry?

4 July 2012

No.15 (Family History Through the Alphabet)

A page at Genealogy Leftovers has links to all my articles in the 'Family History through the Alphabet' series. I intend to add a new one each week.
  • A is for Asylums, Arndell Index and Ashton
  • B is for Birth Place
  • C is for Cooktown, Croydon and Cunnamulla
  • D is for Dunwich Benevolent Asylum
  • E is for Evidence, Engineers and Emigrant Siblings
  • F is for Fires
  • G is for Gypsies, GENUKI and Gold Coast
  • H is for Hackney Cabs and Helen Harris's indexes

23 June 2012

No.14 (genealogy worldwide)

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  • Qld State Archives:  In the Public Search Room at Qld State Archives, records retrieval staff now collect request slips every half hour, on the half hour.

  • Genealogy Expo:  At next week's History and Genealogy Expo in Brisbane, I am speaking about 'Black Sheep and Vanishing Relatives' at 3:30pm on Tuesday. I will be an exhibitor on all three days, but I will also go to some of the talks. If you want to see me, please note that my booth (near the Research Help Zone) will be unattended on Tuesday afternoon, and for up to an hour at various other times.

  • Genealogy and the Law:  Lots of great advice from a genealogist with a law degree.

  • Genealogy cruises:  Unlock the Past invites you to do a quick survey about genealogy conferences on cruises. I have previously written about my experience on their first cruise.

4 June 2012

No.13 (Free Access to LostCousins)

The Lost Cousins site is completely free for all members, new and old, until midnight on Wednesday 6 June 2012. (That would be UK time, so Thursday morning in Australia.) When this 'free full membership' period ends, standard membership will still be free.

LostCousins is a great site for finding your living relatives. The automated matching means that nobody sees your information, but when you do find a 'lost cousin', you can be certain that it is a genuine match. You do not waste time corresponding with people who are not related to you!

To use LostCousins you need to find your relatives in the census for England & Wales 1841, 1881 or 1911; Scotland 1881; United States 1880; Canada 1881; or Ireland 1911. Then you enter the source/page details at LostCousins. Requirements for each census are different, so read the instructions carefully before gathering and entering data ('Information - Read this first'). If you prepare well, entering the data is a lot quicker.

On your My Ancestors page, be sure to enter your direct ancestors' brothers and sisters too, because it is their descendants who are likely to have letters and photos sent by your family.

After completing your My Ancestors page, click 'Search'. The system checks whether anyone else has entered data for the same people. If they have, you can contact them at no cost during this free period until 6 June 2012.

I am a big fan of LostCousins, so please give it a try.

19 March 2012

No.12 (genealogy worldwide)

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  • History and Genealogy Expo in Brisbane:  Mon. 25th to Wed. 27th June 2012, including Monday evening. Special presenters include Audrey Collins from The National Archives in the UK. I will be there as an exhibitor and presenter. My talk will be 'Black Sheep and Vanishing Relatives'. You can now get more details and book tickets.

  • England & Wales:  Changes to certificate prices.

  • The British in India:  A new book, Tracing Your British Indian Ancestors, looks at British Indian history and sources for research (British Library India Office Records, The National Archives, records of the armed forces, civil service and railways, religious and probate records, etc).

  • Paintings:  Are there paintings of your ancestors or places where they lived? At Your Paintings, search by artist's surname or what's in the paintings.

  • Dutch Genealogy:  Genealogy advice from an archivist at the Dutch National Archives. Articles include 'English versions of Dutch first names and last names'.

  • Genealogists for Families:  Wondering whether to join 'Genealogists for Families'? Right now (for a limited time) you can join Kiva with a 'free trial loan' to see how it all works.

  • Family history talks in Townsville & Cairns:  On 28 Apr 2012 I am giving two Family History talks in Townsville ('Black Sheep and Vanishing Relatives' and 'Using Indexes: Tips and Traps'). On 3 May I am speaking in Cairns ('Who else is Researching Your Family?' and 'Black Sheep and Vanishing Relatives'). Attendance is free, but seats are limited so you need to book by contacting the libraries.

  • 'Recommended Reading etc. (Reader GeneaMeme)':  My recommendations for books for family history and recreational reading.

  • Next week I am travelling to South Australia to attend the 13th Australasian Congress on Genealogy and Heraldry in Adelaide.

27 January 2012

No.11 (genealogy worldwide)

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  • The Christmas Letter: did you file a copy with your genealogy documents? You should!

  • Climbing The Spiral Staircase. Whether you are an experienced family historian or a beginner, you will appreciate the tips/reminders in this great article.

  • The Big Genealogy Blog Book by Amy Coffin. I downloaded this and can recommend it.

  • Ancestors in Bohemia, Moravia or Silesia? See Czech Genealogy for Beginners.

  • SAGHS have permission to put South Australian birth, death and marriages indexes on the Internet.

  • Online surveys from which I earn money. You can too!

  • Australia's Missing Newspapers: Libraries need your help. Is there a pile of old newspapers under your bed, in your shed or under the floorboards?