Thursday, 4 January 2018

New Year, New Look & Lots of News - Genealogy Notes 27 Dec 2017 - 5 Jan 2018

Christmas 2016 in Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia
Happy New Year everyone. Still wondering where 2017 went but looking forward to a big genealogy year in 2018.

My first blog challenge for the year was Jill Ball's annual Accentuate the Positive 2017 challenge - read my year in review here. When you stop and consider the questions, you really have done more genealogy than you first think. It is also good to read what others have been doing as there are lots of ideas out there and Jill will be collating responses in January. Stay tuned.

I'm back doing blog posts for The In-Depth Genealogist and my first post was on Discovering the Ryerson Index and there have been quite a few comments, adding to the history of the index. It was also picked up in three genealogy blog roll ups:

I am a fan of those who do these blog compilations as it is hard to keep up with everything published and these summaries often contain useful posts I'd miss.

I've been asked to review Worcester County Council's new digital Explore the Past publication which looks at how to trace your ancestors in Worcester. It's 70 pages and available for 6 pounds and looks very comprehensive. My review should be finished in the next week.

Over the holidays I read Winston Graham's The Angry Tide - I come from a long line of Cornish tin miners and first read Graham's Poldark series back in the late 70s (somehow that doesn't seem as long ago as the 20th century). Of course, I am also watching the new Poldark television series and The Angry Tide picks up where the last series ended so I won't give any spoiler alerts.

It's always exciting when a new history/genealogy magazine starts up and I have just received Issue 1 of Traces: Uncovering the Past which is published in Australia. I took advantage of the 50% introductory offer last year but I noticed (just now as I write this) that the offer is still on the website. So if you are interested, be quick.

Cassie Mercer who we all loved as editor of  the now defunct Inside History is a consultative editor and the first issue has some of my favourite authors including Jayne Shrimpton and Helen Smith.

Social Media
Alona has been busy updating her very useful lists of Australian Genealogy Facebook sites and there are now over 1100 links. Read about the update here and to download a copy - but don't hit the print button as it is 42 pages.

This is not a new resource but I sometimes forget how useful it can be. The University of Leicester's online Historical Directories Collection is free to access. It covers local and trade directories for England and Wales from 1766 to 1919. The website contains at least one directory for every English and Welsh county for each of the 1850s, 1890s and 1910s. A wonderful resource.

What's Coming Up?
Even though I said no more travelling, no more talks, I find that I've already agreed to give 10 talks in 2018 and that involves some travelling. At least it's less than previous years. To see where I will be presenting in 2018 check out the Services/Events page of my website.

The really megaevent this year is the Bridging the Past & Future conference in Sydney in March. There will be over 500 attendees with lots of great talks, exhibitors and time to catch up with old and new friends. I'm giving two presentations and currently putting the finishing touches to the papers which are due on Monday.

Until next time, happy searching.


  1. I like the use of headings - makes it easier to read. I love your Diary and look forward to more posts in 2018.

  2. Thanks Jill. The headings also serve as a prompt too when I'm trying to think about what to write.

  3. Always happy to include good blogs, Shauna, thanks for the mention. I agree with Jill, the headings do make it easier. We "blog junkies" get through an enormous amount of reading in a week.
    I was smiling to myself as I read through what you've got coming up...glad you're slowing down a bit ...

  4. I like the headings too. Writing for blogs is so different from the essay writing we learnt at schools. I also like the inclusion of thingswe might have heard about or read before. The Historical Directories was a great reminder..

    1. I have included this blog also in INTERESTING BLOGS in FRIDAY FOSSICKING at

      I would love others who write summaries to use headings, or at least separate paragraphs rather than jumble all together. Let's hope they follow your good example, Shauna...

      Thank you, Chris