Sunday 24 March 2024

Nick Vine Hall Awards, Bribie Library & Other News: My Genealogy Weeks 1-21 Mar 2024

So much has been happening over the last few weeks and as per usual, I am behind with my updates. March is Women's History Month and I liked Trove's blog on Pioneering Women.


The Bribie Family History Association Book Club totally enjoyed Kate Grenville's A Room Made of Leaves.

Our next book is from one of our own members. Rick Desmier published his own family history in 2020 using NED the National E Deposit Library maintained by the National Library of Australia and searchable through Trove. The Desmier family history: an Anglo Indian family that has been in India for more than 200 years. 

Rick joined my U3A family history writing class in 2019 to undertake this and it is an inspiration to me to finish my own drafts. 

I like the fact that our book club seem to go between fiction and non fiction books. 

Genealogy Software

I had an interesting chat with Martin who is the developer of Forebears the easy to navigate family history app. It is available for both Apple IPhone/IPad and Mac. 

You can upload your family tree via gedcom and then carry it around on your phone or device.

It is not connected to any of the online databases and it is easy to add to and share with family members. No one has access to your data except you.

The Forebears app is free to download and use. I found it easy to use and it managed Mum's rather large gedcom file. 

It is certainly convenient to have it on my phone without having to log into a website. Like any app or software program it is what best suits your purpose. Only by trying different things do we know what works best for our own research needs.

During my playtime with this app, I realised just how many places my tree is online. Also many are quite out of date and I really should either update or take down. An online tidy up just went on my to do list. How does everyone keep their trees online up to date?

New Resources - DNA update

Ancestry have updated their DNA communities and I now have Queensland (no surprises there), Eastern Australia (from Jervis Bay down to Eden and almost out to Griffith and Wodonga and the ACT. Wish I had known that when I lived there! Obviously Dad's family.

Further afield I have northern Ireland and south western Scotland, again aligns with Dad's family. No real surprises on Mum's side but a designated Western Cornwall now. 

Interesting to see how these ethnicity fields are refined over time.  

Nick Vine Hall Awards for AFFHO

As the new convenor for the NVH awards, I have been busy accepting early entries for the 2023 awards, answering queries, liasing with the judges and getting organised for a Zoom session for members after Easter. Read more about the Awards on the AFFHO website.


The Genie Chats on English Genealogy keep me busy each week and hard to believe another term is almost over. Next term it will be looking at a few brick wall case studies as I will be away for quite a few weeks.

PhD Update

Griffith University have now finished my working database for my colonial women in Queensland gaols. Now all I have to do is enter my data on women already researched and continue working on the thousand plus still to go. I have used one of my favourite photos as a backdrop - it might have my great great grandmother in it.

Every book or article I read sends me in even more directions and it is amazing how much relates to my own personal family history. 


It was nice seeing familiar faces at my talk for the Bribie Island Library. The session was on the 1921 census for England and Wales which is available on Findmypast at the Library. So many new features that you wish were available for the earlier census records. 

What's Coming Up

Easter can you believe it? My trip to Sweden and my grandson's second birthday is also getting closer. So many things to finalise before I head off for another trip of a lifetime. A quick circumnavigation of the UK and Shetland Islands is also in the plan as well as stopovers in Amsterdam and Doha.

Over Easter I hope to do a tidy up of my website. One tends to set the pages and then forget that they might need a bit of an update from time to time.

I hope everyone has a wonderful Easter break with family or friends. Try not to eat too much chocolate. And try to find a little time for your own personal family history research. 

Take care until next time 


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