15 August 2019

'DNA Down Under', and Newsletter Interests

  • After attending the first of the 'DNA Down Under' conferences, I am now even more enthusiastic about using DNA tests as a tool for family history. My comments and thoughts are in Why we enjoyed 'DNA Down Under'.

  • If you've subscribed to my free family history newsletter, check your Inbox (and, if necessary, your Spam folder) for today's email about using the 'update your preferences' link and ticking the boxes to say which topics interest you.

11 August 2019

Family History News, 11 Aug 2019

Some people apparently didn't receive my email newsletter, so I'll post it here.

  • In the past month, over 46,000 records have been added to the Ryerson Index. This is a truly magnificent online resource. Ryerson Index entries often include age, place of death, place of residence etc, which can lead you to other sources. Some entries are for death/funeral notices that you can see in Trove. Others are for newspapers that you'll find at a State Library.

  • On August 4th I added more names to the Insanity and Unsound Mind index, which now has more than 20,000 entries. This latest batch included surnames beginning with B, C, D, K, L, N and O.

  • There have recently been significant improvements to Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages online indexes for Victoria.

  • The City of London Cemetery and Crematorium (England) has made 440,000 digitised records, dating from 24 June 1856 to 7 Oct 1955, available online (free) as part of a pilot scheme. Select the time period that you want to search, then scroll through the images.


Genealogy Discounts and Freebies currently has links for these new discount offers:
  • During Aug 2019, downloadable historical birth, death and marriage certificates for Victoria cost just $20.

  • Until midnight (AEST) tonight (11 Aug 2019), full transcriptions of historical birth, death and marriage certificates for New South Wales are just $18.

  • Copies of Queensland's old age pension records are half price until 9am on 15 Aug 2019.

  • Until 14 Aug 2019, AncestryDNA tests *in the UK only* are cheaper.

  • During Aug 2019, new members pay a reduced price to join the Queensland Family History Society.

  • During Aug 2019, Family Tree DNA has discounts of between $20 and $150 depending on which test or upgrade you order.
More details are on Genealogy Discounts and Freebies.

New publications

Research tips

Genealogy software won't always warn you when you enter nonsense (eg, someone dying at age 150, or children born after the mother's death date). I recently added this comment to a tree on Ancestry:

'Sarah Jane NICHOLSON is my great-great-grandmother. Your tree says her father was Richard NICHOLSON, born c.1781, who married Mary MILLER 27 Feb 1775. That's impossible - he can't have married before he was born. And the Mary MILLER who married Richard NICHOLSON in 1775 cannot be the mother of Sarah Jane NICHOLSON born c.1830, because by then Mary would probably have been in her 70s.'

To avoid making silly mistakes like this, I recommend using FTAnalyzer (available for Windows and Mac) to find errors in your tree.

Success story

I recently broke down a long-standing genealogy 'brick wall' when I succeeded in identifying another set of 5xgreat-grandparents. My favourite genealogy research strategy worked once again! More details are in How I Found Sarah Sheppard's Parents.


This week I'm going to Brisbane for the first of the 'DNA Down Under' conferences. Similar events will be held in Perth, Adelaide, Melbourne, Canberra and Sydney. If you want to book for one of those cities but you live in the Northern Territory, Tasmania or New Zealand, email the organisers and ask for a special discount coupon code for NT/Tas/NZ residents. Note that the Sydney programme is almost entirely different from those in the other five cities. Details are on the DNA Down Under web site. Those who pre-book are entered into a prize draw, with a total prize pool of more than $17,000.

Did You Know?

Members of the Queensland Family History Society can (as a benefit of membership) have free access to the genealogy site MyHeritage from your home computer (via the society's website).


Genealogy is my *business*, not just a hobby. My Web site has lots of free advice, plus details of my professional services. Before you ask me a question, please read both of these pages and follow relevant links:

* http://www.judywebster.com.au/prof.html

* http://www.judywebster.com.au/index.html.

(This post first appeared on https://updatesgenie.blogspot.com/2019/08/family-history-news-11-aug-2019.html.)

8 August 2019

No.57 (free genealogy newsletter)

Because of time constraints, I now use my free email newsletter (instead of this blog) to share news about genealogy resources and events, plus my personal tips on research techniques and records for family history. On the sign-up form, note the advice below the 'subscribe' button. If you tick 'Prize draws and competitions', you will be eligible for rewards that are not available to the general public.

Recent editions are online (for a limited time) in the newsletter archive. It's only a few months since the newsletter began, but already 640 people have elected to receive it, and the feedback has been excellent.

(This post first appeared on https://updatesgenie.blogspot.com/2019/08/no57-free-genealogy-newsletter.html.)

27 April 2019

No.56 (genealogy news)

Links open in new windows. If you share the tips below, the Creative Commons license requires that you acknowledge the source as http://updatesgenie.blogspot.com.

  • Newsletter:   I'm now sending my email newsletter via Mailchimp. When you subscribe via the online form, you'll receive an email asking you to confirm your request. If it doesn't arrive promptly, check your Spam folder. The form is at www.judywebster.com.au/subscribe.html. If you'd like a 'sneak peak', the March edition of the newsletter is online for a limited time.

  • DNA tests:   Several DNA testing companies are offering reduced prices, but most of them end on April 28th. Links are on Genealogy Discounts and Freebies.

  • Learning about DNA:   You have until 30 April 2019 to take advantage of Early Bird discounts on bookings for DNA Down Under, a world class DNA themed conference and road show featuring Blaine Bettinger. The August 2019 events in Brisbane, Perth, Adelaide, Melbourne, Canberra and Sydney (Australia) will include topics suitable for all levels (beginner to expert), plus an exhibition of product and service suppliers, DNA interest groups, etc. If you have not done a DNA test and want to know how it can help with your family history, or if you have tested but are unsure what to do with your results, this event is for you! (Disclosure: As an appointed ambassador for the event, I'll receive free admission to the one-day event in Brisbane.)

(This post first appeared on https://updatesgenie.blogspot.com/2019/04/no56-genealogy-news.html.)
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