Sunday 29 January 2023

Genealogy Diary Update for January 2023: Meeting the new twig on the family tree was the highlight

Welcome to 2023 and another wonderful year of researching our family stories.

An early reader 
An early walker

My visit to Sweden to see my little 7 month old grandson was wonderful and I enjoyed every minute of the 10 days I was with them. I think they too liked having an extra pair of hand/eyes around the place. The plan is that they will visit Australia and New Zealand to introduce him to other family members in July 2023. So only a few more months and I will see him again. Not that he will remember me. 

Christmas lunch Swedish style

The whole trip was amazing and I enjoyed seeing Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Copenhagen and Singapore as well as the area around Lund in Sweden. My Facebook profile captures the sights, food and drinks quite well. Anyone would think all I did was eat. 


Only one blog post and that is my response to Jill Ball's annual Accentuate the Positive Geneameme. This is a good way to look at what has been done over the year in a number of different areas. 


One of my holiday reads was Nathan Dylan Goodwin's The Sawtooth Slayer. A great read and an insight into using Gedmatch to identify clusters. 

I downloaded some of Sarah Woodbury's historic novels about Wales and I am now hooked on her as an author. She has a number of different series with different characters and settings but all based on historical Wales.

Caloundra Family History Research

The following is a Call Out To Past Members from CFHR re their 30th anniversary in May.

To mark the 30 th anniversary of The Caloundra Family History Research group in May this year, we are embarking on a project to record the group’s history. Our aim is to finish and present this important record at our anniversary celebration.

To achieve our goal, we need your help! We are inviting former members of our group, or if you know of a former member, to please contact us so that we can record your reminiscences. We are happy to conduct interviews or we will accept written accounts of your memories.
We have a rich history and we envisage showcasing our growth, activities, research, stories, library, special interest groups and guest speakers. Stories from our past members would greatly enrich our 30 th Anniversary history book.
Please contact us at:
Mail: P.O. Box 968, Caloundra QLD 4551
Phone our Secretary: 0437-235-842 or Publicity Officer: 0408-254-765


My next big adventure is attending RootsTech 2023 in early March. My first time in person so I am looking forward to visiting the FamilySearch Library. Not sure if I will do any research as I have a few things on the tourist list as well.


No new close relatives but I want to try and identify more of my clusters. I suspect it is a bit harder than Nathan's fictional genetic genealogists in his books but worth a try.

Surprisingly I have had a few emails from distant cousins - nothing too close  and we haven't been able to identify the common ancestors. With three unknown biological ancestors on Dad's side its a bit of a handicap. Need much closer matches.


February is a busy month for presentations - both in person and virtual. Check out the Events page of my website. My first talk for 2023 is for the family history group at Monash Library in Melbourne. I did talks for them during the Covid lockdowns and now we continue as a hybrid group on Zoom and in person at the library. Hopefully the technology will be on our side.

What's Coming Up?

My great grandmother
- both her parents were Irish
Bribie U3A is starting up in a couple of weeks and we are looking at Irish Genealogy in first term. I am going to be away for 4 sessions. That might be a good time to set them some practical exercises to try and further their own Irish research while I am away. 

Bribie Genealogy has morphed into Bribie Family History Association and our meetings will still be the first Friday of the month at the RSL, Bribie Island. Except for April as that will be Easter.

So between my presentations and my voluntary activities the next few weeks will be busy. Already I have found new information on a number of my Irish families and that gives added value to my efforts at U3A Bribie. 

Until next time, happy searching


Monday 16 January 2023

Accentuate the Positive Geneameme 2022

Each year Jill Ball (aka Geniaus) invites us to take part in this activity by responding to the following statements/questions, several of which are new, in a blog post. Write as much or as little as you want and complete as many statements as you wish. If you wish to take part and don't have a blog, please email Jill your responses and she will post them on the GeniAus blog.

Once you have done so, please share your post's link in a comment on Jill’s post or via email to On her return from a family holiday in mid-January, Jill will share a list of links to all responses on the GeniAus blog.

Remember to Accentuate the Positive 

(Please delete the items that are not relevant to your situation.)

1. I was happy to go back to ... after a Covid absence

In person events – I much prefer giving talks to a ‘live’ audience as it is so much easier to interact with people. I’m also a big book buyer and you can’t do that on Zoom.

Attending U3A genealogy classes in person. I missed the cameraderied of sitting around the table laughing and sharing.

2. In 2022 I was particularly proud of writing ...

Making substantial progress on my family histories for the Carnegie, Finn, Price, Trevaskis and White families. This includes going back and doing citations and scanning documents and photographs. The plan is to finish each one and call it Edition 1 and then upload to Trove via NEDS for all to share. Then Edition 2 will be all the additional information I find as I keep looking for new information.

I also had my 12th research guide published by Unlock the Past - Australian Genealogy Online. Available in print or ebook from Gould Genealogy & History.

3. A new software package or web application I embraced was ...

As mentioned in the previous question, I have been looking at using NED (national e-deposit) to put my family histories online. It seems very simple to use and is a great way to e-publish by simply answering questions re access etc. I'm not planning to sell my family histories.

4.  My sledgehammer did great work on this brick wall ...

My brick walls haven’t budged but I do regularly check for any new information. You never know what might turn up.

5. A new genealogy/history book that sparked my interest was ...

NathanDylan Goodwin’s The Sawtooth Slayer was a must read and an interesting insight into tracking descendants of a common ancestral couple.

I also bought Penny Walters books The Psychology of Searching and Ethical Dilemmas in Genealogy.

Another must have was Danielle Lautrec’s The Good Genealogist: how to improve the quality of your family history research.

6. A geneasurprise I received was ....

The gift of two Ian Mortimer books for my birthday from Mia Bennett – I now also have Restoration Britain and Regency Britain. I simply love the The Time Traveller’s Guides as they give so much detail on each time period.  This really helps to understand more about our ancestors’ lives.

Members of Bribie
Family History Association

7.  In 2022 I finally met ...

The lovely Mia Bennett who spoke at the November meeting of the Bribie Family History Association. It was a real treat for our members to have Mia in the same room with us. She was on her way to Family History Downunder in Sydney with a ‘horde’ of other overseas genealogy speakers.

8.  Locating ... gave me great joy

All the citations I didn’t think to note back in the 70s and 80s and probably into the 90s too. It has been hard work, but I now feel that my research is more validated especially when those family histories are up in Trove.

9.  I am pleased the Covid situation caused me to change ...

As a profoundly deaf person I tended to avoid online talks because I couldn’t hear that well. Covid caused a boom in Zoom which also allowed for closed captions - what a plus. Must also be easier for those struggling with different accents although auto translation can lend itself to unintentional humour.

10. I progressed my DNA research by ...

Really narrowing down Dad’s biological family both near and further away. He had an unknown grandfather and two unknown great great grandfathers all on his biological father’s side. So not a walk in the park but common ancestral couples are now well proven.

11.  An informative journal or newspaper article I found was ...

No one article but I always enjoy the various member society journals I receive – there are always tips about what’s new.

12. I was pleased I could contribute to ...

Another four terms of genealogy tutoring at Bribie U3A. We tackled Australian, English and Scottish genealogy, and brick wall solutions. First term in 2023 is Irish genealogy, last done in 2021.

Assisting the Queensland Family History Society with processing their personal family history donations now that they have moved into new premises.

13.  ... taught me how to ...

I learnt a number of time saving tricks when working on DNA matches from Mia Bennett. So obvious but now I explore all the little filters and options on the various sites.

14. I got a thrill from opening someone's eyes to the joy of genealogy ...

I experience this every week at U3A when I demonstrate something to the class which they haven’t seen or heard about. My archival search strategies show what is deeper in the archives and not always name indexed or digitised in the major subscription sites.

15. The best value I got for my genealogy dollars was ... 

My genealogy society memberships as some of these have exclusive records not found elsewhere. Although it does get a little expensive when you are researching in more than one Australian state.

16. A DNA discovery I made was ...

In 2022 I spent more time looking at Mum’s DNA matches as I have good paper trails for most of her families. No real surprises yet but she has an awful lot of Cornish ancestors.

Fiona Brooker from
Memories of Time

17. I enjoyed my first post Covid face to face event because ...

You could catch up over a coffee/lunch and yes you can do that on Zoom but just being able to see people means so much more.

18. A fabulous event I attended was ...

FamilyHistory Down Under in November was the biggest event I attended and had so many of my favourite overseas speakers. The talks are available online until the end of February 2023 and I still have a list of ones I want to watch or watch again.

I even won a sponsor's prize - one year subscription to Cite Builder. I'm looking forward to seeing how this works and for more consistency in my citations.

19. I'm happy I splashed out and purchased ...

All my books. Plus, I finally bought a laser printer and ever so much quicker than my old ink cartridge printer which is now used only for scanning.

19. I got the most joy from ...

Discovering my webinar on using Australian Archives was the number 2 webinar on Legacy Family Tree webinars in November. This was a total surprise, and I am usually in the Top 40 not the Top 10.

20. Another positive I would like to share is ...

The birth of my first grandchild Theodor who lives in Sweden with his parents. It is so nice to have added a twig to the family tree. I just spent 10 days with them over Christmas/New Year and talked to Theo about his family and life in Australia. Towards the end of my stay, my darling son said ‘Mum you do realise that Theo only knows Swedish’! Note to self: investigate how good Google Translate is for English into Swedish before my next visit.

Please share this invitation far and wide in your social media channels.