Sunday, 25 August 2013

Genealogy Notes 21-26 Aug 2013 Last week of National Family History Month

It's unbelievable how fast August has gone - we are now into the last week of National Family History Month. I hope everyone has been attending events, doing blogs, following people on Twitter or Facebook, finding time for some of their own research and anything else remotely genealogy related! Check out the National Family History Month web calendar and home page for ideas this last week. The Momento photo book competition closes today so it's not too late to put in an entry - details on the NFHM home page. I'm getting some great suggestions for NFHM 2014 so if you want to suggest something, enter the competition!

My last talk for NFHM is on this coming Friday at the Bribie Island library, this will be my first talk on Bribie so it will be interesting to see what the turn out will be. That's where I will also be doing the NFHM sponsors prizes draw and then contact all the winning societies and of course, promote the prize draw winners in the hope that we get even more genealogy and family history societies hosting events next year. Sponsors are also on my list to follow up and I'm even hoping to attract some new sponsors for my new ideas in 2014!

After that I have to write up a report for AFFHO on NFHM 2013 and include recommendations for 2014. I would like to see a whole 12 month awareness campaign so that everyone finds out about it in plenty of time to either host or attend an event. Many libraries and archives plan their event calendars twelve months in advances so we need to make it easier for them to participate.

History is in the air here on Bribie Island at the moment. At the Bribie historical society meeting the other night I bought the new book on the Bribie Bridge which turns 50 in October and at the weekend I bought another book on the Bribie Surf Life Saving Club which has just turned 90. We found lots of entries for Max's Burstow and Eldridge families as they were involved with the club back in the 1930s. The Club had a lot of its photos and other memorabilia on display at the clubhouse and a steady stream of visitors over the weekend.

I've received two UK certificates this week which confirmed what I knew but gave me details to go back another generation but still finding it a bit tough to find them in the census - common surnames should be banned! Still I keep chipping away at it. Every time I look at Trove I find new stories on the family and with new digitised newspapers coming online all the time, it's really worthwhile.

As part of my ongoing rearrangement of my new study, I'm going through all my old paper files and its amazing what I have forgotten I have on file (but it is 36 years this month since I bought my first filing cabinet so maybe it's just old age rather than too much stuff). Not everything has been entered into my genealogy software (mostly the basics) and I'm starting to realise I need to capture all the other bits and pieces of information as well. I've rearranged all the old photos and albums into a scanning priority order, another job I need to get back to now that we have resettled.

So that is my dilemma - I want to do more research on my families using all the modern resources (I can easily spend all day on Trove alone) but I really need to get e-control of all my paper based 'stuff ' before it's too late. Being surrounded by filing cabinets and book cases is a little intimidating not to mention overwhelming. It's not too hard, I just need to do it file by file, album by album (but the tricky part is that each one triggers new ideas to search and I get side tracked). The only good part is that I know I'm not alone and that others share this burden. I'm going to try for an hour a day (or at least 7 hours a week) - wish me luck!

Enjoy the rest of National Family History Month 2013!


  1. Hi Shauna - I completely hear you with regard to your dilemma being torn in two directions...wanting to keep going with the wonderful new technology and conscious of all the paper stuff that needs to be sorted and scanned. I think we need an amenuensis or a modern day equivalent of one, yes?

  2. I'm hearing you, Shauna. I just wish I could get my priorities sorted.

  3. Thanks Alex I think our computers are the modern day equivalent! My Flip Pal scanner was going to solve all my scanning issues - yes it quickly scans but it doesn't identify, tag, file and all that other boring but essential stuff.That's the bit that only we can do, sad but true.

  4. Hi Jill perhaps this is something we should brain storm on the next cruise - how do other people cope with their pre computer age family history research notes, photos etc. Others must have started way back then or inherited it from parents or grandparents

  5. It can be so easy to become distracted. I keep a research journal or basically a "to do" list. Legacy also has his feature - so if I see a website link or think of something I should follow up on while doing something else eg. scanning - I add it to the "to do" list for another time.

  6. Hi Liz just how long is your to do list??