Tuesday, 5 April 2016

NFHM 2016, Scottish finds & other news - Genealogy Notes 30 Mar - 5 Apr 2016

A big week but I am happy to announce that the new National Family History Month website is up and running and we have events already from NSW and VIC. The behind the scenes is a bit different from what I am use to but gradually working it out. Much easier and quicker for me adding the events, more just an approval process. NFHM even has its own blog - read the first post here.

So technically I will have some 'free time' now that the NFHM website is finished. Despite this tempting thought I decided not to participate in the April Blogging from A to Z challenge. Many of my geneamates are doing it but I'm behind in a few things because of the NFHM website and I really need to catch up. However I am enjoying reading some of the posts so far.

Trove Tuesday was yesterday and this is another blogging challenge that I am trying to do at least once a month in 2016. It really is worthwhile because you need to think about what to search for and then write about whatever you discover. So I am using the opportunity to revisit my research. Earlier this year I focused on Herbert William White as my Australia Day Tribute 2016 so I decided to try and find something in Trove on Herbert's son Robert James White.

Herbert White is on the left and
Robert White is standing at the back, ca 1912
Robert died aged 30 years in Charters Towers, Queensland but there were not many results except notices of the filing of probate documents by the Public Curator. What I did find was an account of Herbert's death in Richmond, Queensland where Robert was working at that time. This account in the newspaper raised a number of questions about what was happening in the family in the four months between Herbert and Robert's deaths in 1924. As Trove is adding new information all the time it can really pay to revisit your searches as my Herbert William White Obituary Trove Tuesday post shows.

I am about a half a week behind now with my Future Learn beginning genealogy course  and I was catching up nicely when I was side tracked by an offer from Scotland's People of free credits at the weekend. Who can resist free and as we had been talking about Scottish records in the course I had been thinking of my own Scottish families and where I was stuck with my research. Again revisiting my research with new ideas paid off.

My GGGGG grandmother was Mary Fraser/Frazer who married James Ferrier in 1812 in Craig By Montrose in Forfar/Angus. The marriage record said both of this parish. But I had never been able to find out anything else about Mary. Common names and looking for James and Mary in the Scottish census was a bit like a needle in a haystack. This time I looked for their children as a few of the children had what looked like surnames as middle names. So Andrew Ferguson Ferrier led me to my Mary in the 1841 census. She was a 60 year old widow living on Rossie Island with two of her adult children.

In the 1851 census I picked her up again under the surname Farrier (watch those surname variants) and this finally gave me a birthplace of Pathen (although I think that should be Rathen) in Aberdeenshire ca 1783 as she was listed as 68 years old. No wonder I couldn't find her in Forfar/Angus. Her occupation is pauper and salmon net weaver and she is still living with an invalid daughter.

Mary is gone by the time of the 1861 census and a search for her death gave numerous results but none that looked like her. As registration was only introduced in 1855 she may only have a burial record but again nothing definitely her. But perhaps as a pauper on Rossie Island there is no record. Her invalid daughter is in the 1861 and 1871 census and I think that if Mary was still alive, she would have still been living with the daughter. I need to look into this more.

From only knowing her name I have now gone to knowing where she was born, a more accurate year of birth, she was widowed early, had no money, was a salmon net weaver, lived on Rossie Island and cared for an invalid daughter.  A sidetrack from my studies definitely worth doing.

Having a good time with
Caloundra Family History Research in 2015
This month I am giving a talk to Caloundra Family History Research and they are always a great group to visit. I could probably get there quicker by boat from Bribie Island but in a car I need to go out to the highway, then up the highway then turn back towards the coast. Must start looking for a new purple top (the group's colour).

The Unlock the Past 13th cruise to Papua New Guinea now has a preliminary program up for those who have been wanting to see what talks will be given during the 10 night cruise. I am giving five talks and there are a number of military talks as well as a good spread of genealogy talks. Good to see Helen Smith giving some DNA talks as I still need to understand that a bit more.

Well back to my FutureLearn course. Week 4 started on Monday so must finish Week 3.  As I have said previously, if you want the weeks to fly, enroll in some genealogy education course or blogging challenges! Until next time have a great genealogy week.


  1. You were smart to resist the A-Z. It's taking up so much time.

    Thanks fro your efforts with the NFHM site - we look forward to meeting new and old genimates at our events that are already posted.

    1. Thanks Jill I am finding the FutureLearn course taking up time but worth while - can't do everything

  2. Thanks for always keeping us up to date with all that's happening. I've listed this post in Interesting Blogs on That Moment in Time..http://thatmomentintime-crissouli.blogspot.com.au/2016/04/friday-fossicking-april-8th-2016.html
    Thanks, Shauna.

    1. Thanks Chris for the mention. Seems to be a lot happening in April.

  3. I wanted to do the challenge too Shauna but it was too challenging and a BIG commitment everyday. If it was weekly I could have played.

    1. Totally agree Michelle, every day blogging is a real challenge. Even weekly blogging if there are lots of other work/family commitments is a challenge. But I love blogging and have had some fantastic contacts from blog posts.