Aug 17, 2019

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Brisbane DNA DownUnder Report Aug 2019

Brisbane DNA DownUnder Report Aug 2019

Bribie Island is about an hour’s drive from the event venue and the highway traffic can be unpredictable. After an early start I arrived about 15 minutes before registration was about to commence. Totally shocked to find the car park almost full but I managed to get one of the last spots. Then more shock as I joined the queue to register and slowly shuffled in. There were some familiar faces in the crowd but also a lot of people I hadn’t seen before. Obviously DNA is a hot topic at the moment. As an Ambassador for DNA DownUnder, I collected my badge, lanyard, blogging beads and other bits and pieces including a Snickers bar. Also everyone received a program, bits and pieces and the genealogy bag to put everything in. Then it was over to the main auditorium to find a seat which was not easy as a sea of faces greeted me as I walked in the door. In one of those serendipity events two ladies from Cairns (yes some people traveled that far) sat down next to me, and one of the faces was familiar. She looked at my name tag and said I know you, you won’t remember where from. What a blast from the past. When I was in Canberra working for the National Archives of Australia on the Prime Ministers project, I had to go down to Deakin University in Geelong to talk to them about the project as Deakin was one of our early Prime Ministers. So I met Heather Cox about 2002, 17 years ago. Also nice to meet her friend Kesley Court. Wow. It just shows that you can go to any genealogy conference and meet friends, people from your past and make new friends. However it is not just about the catch ups and networking. We were there to find out all about DNA. I had met Blaine Bettinger (The Genetic Genealogist) in Seattle last year on the Unlock the Past Alaska cruise and it was great to hear more presentations from him. He manages to make DNA more understandable with simple language. The first session was Blaine’s introduction to DNA which set the scene and was followed by his talk on using autosomal DNA for 18th and 19th century mysteries. Then we broke for...

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Jun 13, 2019

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Waves in Time Family & Local History Conference, Queensland – Part 2...

Waves in Time Family & Local History Conference, Queensland – Part 2

This is the second blog post on my attendance at the Waves in Time Conference on the Sunshine Coast in May 2019. Read Part 1 here. Part 2 looks at the Conference over Saturday and Sunday. With the exception of the Keynotes, there was a dual program on both days. This obviously meant having to decide which session to attend. However, all speakers were asked to provide a handout and this was given to attendees on a USB. First keynote speaker was Dr Richard Reid (author of many Irish books) who spoke about the importance of personal family papers and the stories they tell. He also reminded me that I should should again Patrick O’Farrell’s Vanished Kingdoms: Irish in Australia & New Zealand. A quick check of my local library catalogue said no copy held and a wider search showed only three copies in Queensland – one in the Brisbane City Council libraries and two in universities in Brisbane and Townsville. My next session was Cara Downes from National Archives of Australia talking about the Chinese in Queensland. There are lots of digitised files and photographs for Chinese families as the White Australia policy meant that these families were documented especially if they were coming into or returning to Australia. There is a published guide Chinese Australian Journeys free to download from the website. Marion McKenzie spoke about After the War using the Oxley Chelmer area of Brisbane as a case study. She also touched on the flu epidemic which coincided with the return of many soldiers who were then quarantined. Settling back home was often difficult and there were employment and soldier settlement schemes to help them. There is also the National Archives of Australia online exhibition 1918 A Different Life. For something completely different, Liesl Harrold’s Can I Map That? demonstrated how you can use Google Earth Pro to help interpret documents and gain a clearer understanding of what happened. Her example was a death by drowning and my mapping the various witnesses from their depositions she could plot where the person must have fallen into the creek. Fascinating. Louise Coakley was the second keynote speaker talking about DNA which was just another record source to be combined with other sources. Although it has had a tsunami type effect on research in...

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Jun 1, 2019

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Waves in Time 2019 Family & Local History Conference – Queensland Part 1...

Waves in Time 2019 Family & Local History Conference – Queensland Part 1

After two years of waiting and planning, the 3rd biannual History Queensland family and local history conference is over. Waves in Time was a wonderful conference thanks to the extensive planning by Caloundra Family History Research and History Queensland. The venue was great, catering amazing, tasty and plentiful, speakers interesting and lots of tempting exhibitors to pass the time in between. Plus we got to catch up with old geneabuddies and make new ones. I even won a...

Apr 24, 2019

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Waves in Time – Meet the Speakers – Barb Toohey...

Waves in Time – Meet the Speakers – Barb Toohey

I  am a proud ambassador for the upcoming Waves in Time conference on the Sunshine Coast. Ambassadors are doing a series of blog posts on speakers and sponsors to help promote the conference and get the excitement going. My sixth and final speaker interview is with Barb Toohey from Canberra. We have asked her a set of questions to learn more about her interest in archives and history. Questions are in italics. I wonder if you could tell us a...

Apr 22, 2019

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Waves in Time – Meet the Speakers – Cara Downes, National Archives of Australia...

Waves in Time – Meet the Speakers – Cara Downes, National Archives of Australia

I  am a proud ambassador for the upcoming Waves in Time conference on the Sunshine Coast. Ambassadors are doing a series of blog posts on speakers and sponsors to help promote the conference and get the excitement going. My fifth speaker interview is with Cara Downes from the National Archives of Australia. We have asked her a set of questions to learn more about her interest in archives and history. Questions are in italics. I wonder if you could tell...

Apr 17, 2019

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Waves in Time – Meet the Speakers – Michelle Patient, The Patient Genie...

Waves in Time – Meet the Speakers – Michelle Patient, The Patient Genie

I  am a proud ambassador for the upcoming Waves in Time conference on the Sunshine Coast. Ambassadors are doing a series of blog posts on speakers and sponsors to help promote the conference and get the excitement going. My fourth speaker interview is with Michelle Patient, also known as The Patient Genie. We have asked her a set of questions to learn more about her interest in archives and history. Questions are in italics. I wonder if you could tell...

Apr 6, 2019

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Waves in Time – Meet the Speakers – Dan Kelly, Boolarong Press...

Waves in Time – Meet the Speakers – Dan Kelly, Boolarong Press

I am a proud ambassador for the upcoming Waves in Time conference on the Sunshine Coast. Ambassadors are doing a series of blog posts on speakers and sponsors to help promote the conference and get the excitement going. My third interview is with Dan Kelly from Boolarong Press. We have asked him a set of questions to learn more about his interest in publishing and history. Questions are in italics. I wonder if you could tell us a little about...

Mar 23, 2019

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Waves in Time – Meet the Speakers – Jason Reeve, Ancestry...

Waves in Time – Meet the Speakers – Jason Reeve, Ancestry

I  am a proud ambassador for the upcoming Waves in Time conference on the Sunshine Coast. Ambassadors are doing a series of blog posts on speakers and sponsors to help promote the conference and get the excitement going. My second speaker interview is with Jason Reeve from Ancestry. We have asked him a set of questions to learn more about his interest in archives and history. Questions are in italics. I wonder if you could tell us a little about...

Mar 17, 2019

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Finding Female Ancestors – International Women’s Month...

Finding Female Ancestors – International Women’s Month

March is International Women’s Month and previous years I have blogged about my own female ancestors. Time flies as I thought I wrote about My Four Great Grandmothers last year, but it was back in 2016. This year I decided to write about some of my favourite resources for finding women. Women can often be hard to locate as they were not often mentioned in the records. If they were, it might have been as Mrs Price, or Mrs...

Mar 12, 2019

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Waves in Time 2019 – Meet the Speakers – Niles Elvery, Queensland State Archives...

Waves in Time 2019 – Meet the Speakers – Niles Elvery, Queensland State Archives

I am a proud ambassador for the upcoming Waves in Time conference on the Sunshine Coast. Ambassadors are doing a series of blog posts on speakers and sponsors to help promote the conference and get the excitement going. My first speaker interview is with Niles Elvery from the Queensland State Archives. We have asked him a set of questions to learn more about his interest in archives and history. Questions are in italics. I wonder if you could...