Presentation outlines

Chris Paton's topics - two selected for each city - check program for your city


  1. Civil registration in the British Isles - Civil registration was briefly introduced into Britain in Cromwellian times, but it would not be until 1837 that modern civil registration as we know it began in England and Wales. The registration of BDMs by the state was not universal however – in Scotland it would not be implemented until 1855, in Ireland it arrived in two stages in 1845 and 1864, and later for the Crown Dependencies of Man and the Channel Islands. This talk provides an overview of the history of civil registration, the differences between the records across the British Isles, and how to locate the records. 
  2. Irish land records - Where the pre-1901 Irish censuses largely no longer exist, land records can often help to fill the gap in the ancestral record. From Griffiths Valuation to 19th century tithes records, and from the Ordnance Survey to the Registers of Deeds, this talk will look at some of the key land records that can help with Irish family history research, both online and available on the island of Ireland itself. 
  3. British civilian POWs in the First World War - 2014 will see the centenary of the start of the First World War, but as well as the military story it also marks the 100th anniversary of another tale – the plight of the thousands of British and British Empire civilians who were present in Europe when war was declared against Germany. Rounded up and interned at a hastily converted racecourse on the outskirts of Berlin, this talk will look at the fascinating story of the 5500 POWs (including a few from Down Under) whose only crime was being in the wrong place at the wrong time... 
  4. Scottish marriage: instantly buckled for life - “Suppose that young Jock and Jenny, say we two are husband and wife, the witnesses needn't be many, they're instantly buckled for life”. Until 1939 and 2006 there were many ways you could be legally married in Scotland that were not found elsewhere in the UK, thanks to the unique legal system north of the border based on Roman Law. If you cannot find a marriage on ScotlandsPeople, this may help explain why. (Includes a dash of antenuptial fornication!)
  5. Scottish inheritance records - In England and Wales, land could be bequeathed in a will from the 16th century, but in Scotland, it could not be so bequeathed until 1868 – just one of many such differences between the laws of inheritance north and south of the border. From the records of confirmation to the conveyance of conquest, and from the 'Services of Heirs' to 'precepts of clare constat', this talk will explain the unique inheritance system in Scotland, and its many differences to the rest of the UK.
  6. British and Irish newspapers - Several platforms now offer online access to digitised British and Irish newspapers, whilst many finding aids are also available online for those only available in libraries. This short talk will describe some of the most useful, and where to find them online. 
  7. Irish records online - Despite the loss of Irish records, many still exist. And for those unable to make their way to Ireland to carry out research, the internet is finally coming to the rescue, as more and more material is coming online.
  8. The godly commonwealth: discover Scottish church records

Thomas MacEntee's topics - two selected for each city - check program for your city


Click titles for full description

All those listed here are rated as suitable for beginning level audiences

  1. Building a genealogy research toolbox - Are you overwhelmed with the number of online resources for genealogical research? Are you constantly working with unorganised bookmarks or favorites? Printing out lists of websites you use most? Learn how to build a research toolbox that is organised, easy-to-use, and can be accessed from almost anywhere.
  2. Genealogy cloud computing - Tired of keeping your genealogy research data on multiple CDs, DVDs, flash drives, hard drives and in different locations? Cloud computing – the practice of storing data on a remote server – is a practical solution for genealogists. Learn not only how cloud computing works, but also the latest cloud programs and how to keep your data secure and private.
  3. Wikis for genealogists - While many think of a wiki as an on-line, collaborative encyclopedia, the wiki structure can be used by genealogists to document their research for both clients and their own families. Learn the various wiki platforms and the basics of setting up a wiki.
  4. Wolfram|Alpha for genealogists - Wolfram Alpha provides solutions to questions such as “How am I related to my great-grandmother’s niece” or “What was the time of the sunrise on April 1, 1962, in Chicago, Illinois?” Learn how this unique site can expand your genealogy and family history research.
  5. You use WHAT for genealogy? Wonderful uses for unusual tools - We’ll review a group of familiar apps and websites that are being used in creative ways by the genealogy community. You’ll also learn how to think “outside the margins” and start repurposing other apps and sites for your genealogy research.
  6. Google for genealogists - Google Alerts and Google Books It isn’t always easy to determine new content that has been added to Google, especially if you are on the hunt for information posted by others about your ancestors. Learn how to harness the power of Google Alerts and get notified via e-mail or RSS feed when anything new pops up on Google that can help your genealogy research.
  7. Pinning your family history - One of the challenges in using the Flip- Pal® mobile scanner on family photos and mementos is “what do I do with it now that it’s scanned?” Using social media pinning sites such as Pinterest, What Was There, History Pin and even Google Maps allows you to not only share your family history photos, but you never know who will find your content and what connections you could make!
  8. Metadata for digital images - Once an image is scanned using the Flip- Pal® mobile scanner, you can do more than just send the image to friends and family. Learn how to work with the metadata embedded in the file to add captions, information about people in the photo, when the photo was taken and more!
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