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

12 March 2019

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 tell us a little about your background?  Are you a genealogist, researcher, historian or representing your organisation?  

Niles when he visited Bribie Seaside Museum as part of the QANZAC 100 project. Author photo.

I will be representing my organisation, Queensland State Archives, at the conference. I like to think of myself as someone who has worked in the library and history sector for many years and align most closely with historian. I have worked in this sector for over 35 years and really enjoy connecting with the history of this state. There are so many individual stories that have yet to be written.

How has genealogy/family history/history/heraldry improved or changed your life?

History has given me an appreciation of where we have come from. Understanding the lives of those that have come before us and how Queensland has changed over the years.

What do you love most about genealogy/family history/history/heraldry? 

Uncovering the intimate details of our history and being able to share these with the wider community. Working at QSA gives me the opportunity to help others find the pieces of the jigsaw which contribute in some small way to the whole picture.

Have you attended a History Queensland Conference in previous years?

Yes. I presented a paper at the conference at the Gold Coast on the Q ANZAC 100 project that I was working on at State Library of Queensland.

Queensland State Archives tote bag from the October 2015 History Queensland conference. Author photo.

What are your key topics for the Waves in Time Conference?

That QSA collection contains some amazing things.

QSA is using online channels to connect with new audiences and share the collection.

How do you think your topic/s will help the family & local historians at the Waves in Time Conference?

This will give attendees an appreciation for what might be held in the archives. And maybe open some new channels of communication.

And also develop an understanding amongst the research community that the content is there to be shared. These are collectively our stories and they are there for everyone.

The item that I will be presenting on is something very unique which is held at QSA and we would like to share the adventure that we are embarking on to undertake research into this item and how we might make community connections through that process.

What do you think are the benefits of attending a large conference like this, for you personally and for others attending?

The benefit of attendance is to be able to talk  to individuals about what we do at QSA and encourage them to use the collection and share the information. I am hoping that many people will be interested in sharing content amongst there own networks.

Do you have a favourite piece of advice or a tip or trick you can share with conference attendees?

Just look. You never know what you might find.

Is there somewhere we can connect with you online?

Connect with QSA via Facebook, Twitter – just use the links on the home page.

If you could pick one new project to do, what would it be? (Assuming no funding issues)

You asked. Digitising the QSA collection and making it available online for everyone to be able to access it.

Thanks Niles for those answers and we all look forward to catching up with you in person at the Waves in Time conference in May.

As an Ambassador I receive a free registration in return for promoting the conference in various social media forums and on my website and blog. In addition I am also giving a free talk at the Friday Fair which is open to the public and free. More details on the Waves in Time website.


Shauna has been tracing her own family history since 1977 and is a Fellow of the Queensland Family History Society. In 2009 Shauna received the Australasian Federation of Family History Organisations (AFFHO) Services to Family History Award for her achievements in Queensland, Canberra and Victoria.

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1 Comment

  1. That was a great read – thank you Shauna. You’re a wonderful Ambassador, thank you. Valerie


  1. Meet the Speakers - Waves in Time 2019 - […] Niles Elvery, Queensland State Archives by Shauna Hicks […]

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