Sunday, 11 August 2013

Genealogy Notes 10-12 August 2013 - NFHM update and a new sponsor competition!

I have to confess to a laptop/social media free day on Saturday - it was all building my new vegie gardens and swimming in the pool to celebrate this absolutely incredible August weather we are currently having. You would never know it is winter here on Bribie Island although my memories of Brisbane in August are cold westerly winds especially at Ekka time! So having had a day of relaxation I'm now back in the excitement of National Family History Month.

First I need to share some more news from one of our sponsors, the National Archives of Australia. Regular readers will know that I have just returned from a meeting of the centenary of WW1 advisory committee. I've always been interested in the Boer War as Mum had two uncles who served in both the Queensland colonial contingents and also in the Commonwealth contingents. What I didn't know was that NAA has put the contingent lists for their Boer Ward records into ArcHive their exciting new website that allows researchers at home to help transcribe the documents and make them more accessible to everyone.

Well there are 187 Boer War records waiting to be transcribed! You can search for whatever kind of records that you might like to work on. It's a bit like an Aladdin's cave - too much choice but all good! NAA even gives a rating for difficulty eg easy or hard but looking at some of the 'hard' ones as a long time researcher I can easily read the handwriting (but then I did work in archives for a long time too). Most of these appear to be nominal rolls which make for fascinating reading while you transcribe. Why not register and give it a go!

Now for the National Family History Month update. I've added a few more entries but I think most events are now on the web calendar. I've seen references to events on Twitter, Facebook, Google +, blogs and list servs so it looks like there is a lot of genealogy going on this month! I was going to try and capture all the references but there is just too much but Geniaus aka Jill has added a widget to her blog to show all the tweets for #NFHM13 throughout August. Read her blog post about it here.

There is a late sponsor - Momento which is a online photo book company and they have offered a $150 voucher for a NFHM competition. So I have placed the competition details on the NFHM home page and I've decided to get everyone to help me think of great ideas for NFHM 2014. As national coordinator for the first time this year, it has been a steep learning curve and I've built on existing practices as well as introducing some of my own ideas. But I'm sure that there are lots of other great ideas out there so put your thinking caps on and submit an entry.

I know I have international readers so I'm sorry to say that the NFHM competition is only open to individuals in Australia. If anyone wants to submit an idea/comment please do so but you won't be eligible for the prize this year. Also entries must be within the competition time frame and must include your name and postcode. It will be drawn on 30 August when the NFHM sponsors' prizes for genealogy/family history societies are also drawn.

I rather like the idea of a competition for individuals but at this stage I'm not sure how much work I've just let myself in for. Still it's a learning experience and someone will be an excited winner. I'm looking forward to 30 August and the prize draw and notifying all the lucky winners. But that will also mean NFHM will be over and that's a bit sad but we can all start planning and looking forward to NFHM 2014. (A little birdie has told me that it will be a month again next year so that's fantastic news!)

We have more Melbourne friends arriving for a two day stay so I'm going to be a bit busy entertaining them here on beautiful Bribie Island but I hope everyone continues to have a great genealogy month with all those events across Australia and if you are stuck for something to do, don't forget my 31 Activities for Researchers & Societies for NFHM! Until next time.


  1. Shauna,

    Are you really retired? You deserve all the time you can get in and by that pool.

    Thanks for all you do for the world of genealogy.

  2. Semi retired Jill - I try to do about 2 days a week and the rest is 'me' time which includes voluntary projects such as coordinating NFHM! By helping others I actually learn heaps that is relevant to my own family history research. The Boer War material I found in National Archives of Australia complements what I found at Queensland State Archives which was really good.

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