History, Genealogy and Heritage Events

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Victorian Expo (Geelong) - Presentations

1942: War comes to Australia—Alan Phillips & Jacqui Haraldstad

In 1942 Australia was attacked from outside for the first time. Soon after the sinking of the cruiser Sydney (Nov 1941), bombing of Pearl Harbour (Dec 1941) and fall of Singapore a series of attack on the Australian mainland occurred. Darwin was bombed in February 1942, and Broome in March. The Coral Sea battle occurred in May and subs enter Sydney Harbour in May/June. Sydney and Newcastle were bombarded from the sea in June. Numerous other air raids on towns in NT, WA and Qld began in 1942 and continued into late 1943, many with minor damage and only occasional casualties. This presentation will give an overview of these attacks. It will conclude with a brief look at some of the 70th anniversary commemorations coming in 2012 and some of the WWI and Gallipoli Centenary commemorations already being planned for 2014 and beyond.

Accessing your state's archives in regional Victoria: featuring Ballarat Archives Centre, Bendigo Regional Archive Centre and Places of Deposit—Lauren Bourke

Did you know that you can access some of the most important local and family history records from the State Archive’s collection in regional Victoria?  This seminar will introduce participants to the amazing historical records held at the Ballarat Archives Centre and Bendigo Regional Archives Centre, how you can access them and how they can help you with your local history and family history research. 

Ancestry.com.auBrad Argent

Providing an overview of how we do what we do – taking a look at some of the behind the scenes technology and challenges of making family history records “internet friendly”.

Are you sure you aren't reinventing the wheel? why you should check if the Society of Australian Genealogists already holds your family's history—Heather Garnsey

The Society of Australian Genealogists was formed in 1932, and has therefore been collecting family history resources for nearly 80 years.  New researchers often don't realise that other family members have already done some family history research - and may well have deposited that material with the SAG in Sydney - even when they didn't live in NSW.  Discover what the SAG holds, how it can help you with your research - and how it is becoming easier to access it all from a distance.

Asylums: Looking for the sick, the poor & the aged—Shauna Hicks

Asylum records are an under-utilised resource and it is important to realise that asylums also housed the elderly, the sick, the destitute as well as those suffering a mental illness. This presentation looks at what records are available and how to access them.

Australian Institute of Genealogical Studies: a treasure trove for family historians—Anne Major

There exists a "treasure trove" of records, largely not available on the net, which are unfamiliar to many, seldom used and often overlooked; resources which are on hand at AIGS. This presentation looks at many of these and opens the door to a wealth of often valuable sources.

Captain Octavius Skinner Burton—Andrew Kilsby

Captain Octavious Skinner Burton was a colourful character, significant in both Geelong and wider Victorian history. In the 1860s he became the Adjutant of the Victorian Volunteer Cavalry and his official station became Geelong. He later held the rank of Inspector in the Victorian Police Force at Geelong. For a preview of Burton click here. And then come along to hear Andrew present the Burton story in person.

Connecting with family lines online—Rosemary Kopittke

We used to write letters to discover family connections but now there are many different ways we can find others searching the same family lines. This presentation has a look at GenesReunited, MyHeritage, Ancestry and other websites to see how we can use the resources of the internet to make those family connections. What does each of them offer and which is best for you?

DNA for genealogists—Kerry Farmer

Learn how the genetic markers in DNA can help you find your ancestors, when genealogy is combined with genetics. How do you decide which DNA tests and which DNA testing companies best suit what you want to know? Links for further reading about the subject as well as for the DNA testing companies and DNA databases can be found at familyhistoryresearch.com.au/courses/DNA

Family history and sports archives—Bruce Smith

FamilySearch: Ancestors at your fingertips—Paul Parton

FamilySearch is developing exciting, free, on-line tools to assist family historians and has released a beta version of ‘England Jurisdictions 1851’. A map of England is displayed, underneath which is a database of the jurisdictions of England as they existed in 1851. Knowing a jurisdiction is a vital clue to finding records for family history research. By clicking on a location on the map of England, a link will take you to the Family History Library Catalog where a list of filmed records for that location will be found. These records could be census, church, poor law, family history, tax, land, school records and many more categories.

FamilySearch: more records to more people faster—Paul Parton

An aim of FamilySearch is to bring ‘more records to more people, faster’. A major initiative in achieving this is FamilySearch Indexing. This is an on-line community based transcription project consisting entirely of volunteer indexers. With 300,000 volunteers currently registered we are the world’s largest community-based transcription service. A major project, using our own equipment and services, is digitising and indexing 2.4 million rolls of microfilm held in the FamilySearch vaults. Take a peek in the vaults and see how this project works and the benefits it provides.

Findmypast.com.au: what is there, what is coming and how to use it —Rosemary Kopittke

Findmypast.com.au  Learn what a great range of unique records are available for researching your families on this new site, what is coming and learn the best way to do your searching.

Findmypast.co.uk— Rosemary Kopittke

This presentation looks at the hundreds of millions of records currently available on Findmypast.co.uk and how they can help you with your family history – records predominately covering England and Wales though there are people from elsewhere in the passenger lists and other documents. It will also look at what is to come – more military records, reindexed deaths, and much more.

Finding families at the State Library of Victoria— Anne Burrows

The talk will be an overview of some of the major resources for genealogy and family history at the State Library of Victoria plus an update of State Library of Victoria news, including the family matters blog, family history research guides and podcasts of our annual family history feast event.

Geelong Heritage Centre: discover your treasure in Victoria's largest regional archive collection—Mark Beasley

Did you know that the Geelong Heritage Centre is the largest regional archive collection in Victoria. The Geelong Heritage Centre commenced operations over 30 years ago and the unique collection it now holds is a fabulous resource to access for family historians. Although the majority of the Geelong Heritage Centre archive collection has been sourced from the Geelong and Barwon Region it does contain material from all parts of Victoria and even beyond. Mark Beasley, Manager of the Centre will present an overview of the Heritage Centre’s treasured collection and highlight a few more unusual items you might not have thought could help unlock that family mystery!

Genealogical Society of Victoria: GSV @ Home—Susie Zada

These days people expect to be able to do a lot of their research from home and the GSV recognises that many cannot always visit to make use of our extensive library and resources.  The GSV @ Home presentation will show you just how much you can achieve by accessing the members’ on-line area and how it goes hand-in-hand with other member benefits such as Short Requests and eResearch.

Google your family tree: tips & tricks—Shauna Hicks

This talk looks at basic search strategies and how researchers can maximise their search results. It also addresses more advanced searching using Google features such as Alerts, Library, Images, Videos and Maps.

Heritage tourism—Dr Dianne Snowden

What is ‘heritage tourism’? What role is there for family and community historians in heritage tourism? Because heritage tourism is based on local heritage, protecting that heritage is essential. Many tourists are fascinated by the history of the places they visit. Almost since historical societies started to be established in Australia, well over a century ago, they have played an important role in making their local history accessible to visitors to their districts in a variety of ways. Today heritage tourism is big business in Australia.

For historical societies and others involved in heritage tourism (including family historians), a key challenge is ensuring that increased tourism does not destroy or denigrate those qualities that attract visitors in the first place. Successful heritage tourism activities can not only make a significant contribution to local economies but can lead to increased community awareness and pride, which in turn can lead to a greater awareness of the importance of local heritage sites and collections. Family and community historians play an invaluable role in this process.

Introduction to family and local history research at the Public Record Office Victoria—Lauren Bourke

Ever wondered who you were ancestor’s were, where they lived or what property they owned?  This seminar will introduce you to some of amazing records held within Public Record Office Victoria.   Learn how you can tap into the 90 kilometres of records in the State Archive’s collection to build the story of your ancestor’s lives, from their arrival in Victoria, schooling, the property they owned and even their run-ins with law. 

It's not all online: where else can I look?—Shauna Hicks

This presentation is a reminder that not everything is online and that researchers still need to use archives, libraries, historical societies and museums, genealogy and family history societies and so on. Finding out where our ancestors lived, where they went to school, worked and what their involvement was in the local community are all aspects of our ancestors lives and help us to know them more.

Look local, its not all on the web: regional family and local history societies—Susie Zada

Large on-line databases and subscription sites have made family history researchers “greedy” – they want more – more detail, more records, more anything.  Local family history groups and historical societies have far more than just local records – they have local knowledge. 

Museum treasures of regional Victoria—Laura Miles

The National Library: family historians treasure trove—Jenny Higgins

Used the National Library for family history? Come along and find out about the treasures there to help you research your family history. Learn about our new discovery service TROVE, which includes free digitised historic Australian newspapers. Find out about the resources available to YOU - wherever you live in Australia.

Preservation of your records—Kay Söderlund, Preservation Australia

Preservation of Your Records will discuss common elements that, if not dealt with correctly, can increase the rate of deterioration of your family history collection.  Light, humidity and poor storage are just some of the issues that can cause problems for the preservation of a family history collection and this presentation will discuss strategies that can help reduce the impact of these 'agents of deterioration'. A question and answer session will be included.

Regional newspapers: a wonderful resource—Peter Mansfield

Peter will be speaking about the Geelong newspapers from two points of view. 1 Resources and holdings and 2 His Research based on newspaper archives.

Regional and university libraries—William Dolley

Researching Irish immigrant women—Dr Liz Rushen

From 1832, when the Red Rover, the first ship to bring free Irish women to Sydney, thousands of single Irish women have come to Australia, some on so-called ‘bride ships’, others accompanied by family and friends on emigrant ships. What do we know of these women and their circumstances before they emigrated? What were their motivations in leaving their homes and travelling to the other side of the world and how did they survive the pioneering life? Drawing on a wide range of resources available to researchers, Liz will discuss what we can learn about the lives of these immigrant women.

Researching pre-Federation military ancestors—Andrew Kilsby

What do you know of your ancestor's involvement in 19th Century military activities - or local militia service. Andrew Kilsby is a specialist historian in all conflicts up to World War 1

The collections of the Royal Historical Society Victoria—Kate Prinsley

ScotlandsPeople: the place to launch your Scottish research - Rosemary Kopittke

An overview of ScotlandsPeople – the official online source of parish register, civil registration, census, wills and testaments records for Scotland. Containing almost 80 million records, the ScotlandsPeople database is the primary source of information for those researching Scottish families.

Sewerage records: an untapped magnificent resource—Susie Zada

Sewerage is not something we instantly associate with our ancestors nor is it a resource that many people have high on their list for checking.  For those who have looked at sewerage plans, you will start to understand the value of this resource but when you dig even deeper into sewerage records [pun intended!] you will start to understand why this is a magnificent resource.  These records don’t discriminate between large mansions and small workers’ cottages – they are all encompassing – you just have to dig them out!

Social media for family historians—Carole Riley

The internet has made social interaction possible on a scale unimagined a few years ago, and is a boon for family historians. Information and photos can be shared more easily than ever before, and communication with distant relatives can become a part of everyday life rather than an annual Christmas card. Social media will be defined and described, and some social networking websites such as Facebook, Twitter, and some genealogy-related blogs will be shown.

Soldier settlement in Victoria—Dr David Rowe

Provides a basic understanding and appreciation of soldier settlement land schemes established during and after the First and Second World Wars, the history and operations of the schemes, the successful recipients, training, housing and the legacies of the schemes, and the locations resources about soldier settlers that you may not know about – these will help with your family history research.

Tasmanian family history research: repositories, records and rogues—Dr Dianne Snowden

This presentation will explore the basics of researching Tasmanian family history: the major repositories, and their records, with an occasional rogue thrown in! Dianne’s presentation will include an overview of the more unusual Tasmanian sources and the types of information they contain. There will be a special emphasis on researching Tasmanian family history from outside Tasmania as well as suggestions for planning family history research trips to the State.

Tracing English ancestors—Kerry Farmer

Tracing your ancestors in England with an overview of resources, including civil registration, church records, census, cemetery records, directories, maps, newspapers, wills, military and more.

Did you know that the Geelong Heritage Centre is largest regional archive collection in Victoria. The Geelong Heritage Centre commenced operations over 30 years ago and the unique collection it now holds is a fabulous resource to access for family historians. Although the majority of the Geelong Heritage Centre archive collection has been sourced from the Geelong and Barwon Region it does contain material from all parts of Victoria and even beyond. Mark Beasley, Manager of the Centre will present an overview of the Heritage Centre’s treasured collection and highlight a few more unusual items you might not have thought could help unlock that family mystery!