Aug 192013

Tonight we are road-testing using Blogger to write posts and the joys of blogging for cousin bait.

Description of George Howard Busby World War One Enlistment papers

George Howard Busby is the reason I started researching family history.

I have recently done some research at Queensland State Archives and found George in the Soldier Settlement Scheme.

Aug 042013

I had an opportunity to chat awhile today while at the New Zealand Family History Fair with Andy Fenton, the Managing Director of NZMS who are the people to talk to if you want to do digitisation, text conversion, microfilming & online hosting and they can be found here.

They do a lot of work with government, business, archives, clubs and societies, individuals, in fact anyone who wants to digitise their heritage items for preservation and to share the reproductions.

They have worked on all sorts of projects both large and small. They also sell scanning equipment and do consultancy and training and have three offices where they can be contacted in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch.

I was quite pleased to see the Epson Perfection V700 on their stand which is the flatbed scanner I bought a few years ago to do some of my numerous slides and negatives I had inherited. Of particular importance for me was that I had been given some very large old negatives and the Epson would scan a very wide range of negative sizes. It would also scan multiple 35mm slides which was a plus as my grandmother was fairly snap happy in the 1960s and I had a lot of slides to do.


And remember I said they were helpful and friendly? 

Very rarely do I ever have men on their knees to me!



Aug 042013

Definitely has been a whirlwind time and now it is the last day. The bagpipes are back and circulating among the crowds. Some of whom have taken a break and are refreshing themselves with lunch before the next session.

I attended a presentation  by D. Josh Taylor, over from the US, talking on the British Newspaper Archive. HDSC01218ad some lovely examples including the Cornish miner who was killed in an accident in the US. There were no details in the US papers but the researcher managed to find an account of the accident in one of the papers in the British newspaper Archive. Success after many years of searching!

Often items of interest can be repeated in papers far away so always worth doing a general area search without geographic restrictions as part of your search strategy.

Editors everywhere, same as today, have had to work to fill their papers.

Now I’m off to the next session!

Aug 032013

I met up with a very interesting lady, Helen Wong, today at the Fair.

Helen has written a booklet: Beginner’s Guide to Chinese Resources in New Zealand and New Zealand Chinese Celebrating New Year Past and Present. These were expanded from two presentations Helen has done previously at the Auckland City Library.

These are subjects that I don’t know much about and it was interesting talking with her. The booklet tells a bit of the history of the Chinese in New Zealand.

It says that in 1866, 12 Chinese came over from Victoria, Australia. By 1869 it says there were 20, 000 Chinese in New Zealand.

I knew of the White Australia policy and the problems it had created there and by the sounds of it there were similar thoughts in New Zealand although it looks as though they handled it differently, again not fairly but differently.

The following information is also taken from Helen’s book: “The New Zealand Government instituted a Poll Tax which was meant to restrict Chinese immigration. In 1881 it was ten pounds per Chinese person and by 1896 it was 100 pounds which was the equivalent to around six years earnings for the average Chinese person”

Helen was giving a presentation at the Fair on Chinese research and judging by the number of people who told me they were researching Chinese ancestry should have been well attended.

Helen has written another book about Chinese in the Taranaki area. Helen also maintains a message board for Chinese research.

I did a bit of Googling as this topic sounded interesting and found another website which has a range of resources relating to the Chinese in New Zealand.

It is good to see such research being done and published.

Aug 032013

I had the pleasure of attending a presentation on Wednesday last By Dr Jo Appleby on digging up Richard III and the work done on extracting the DNA and then the work on determining possible descendants so the identification of the skeleton that was found could occur. Dr Appleby is also talking each day at the New Zealand Family History Fair. A great presentation not to be missed! She really is an engaging and interesting speaker.
Then there were a further three presentations, one on the New Zealand Fencibles which was very interesting as it was a new topic to me.

I gave my presentation on Using DNA to Solve Genealogical Puzzles which was well received and then Cassie Mercer of Inside History magazine gave a presentation on How to get your Family History stories published in magazines and newspapers.

It was a very well organised day and the Auckland City Library Staff are to be congratulated on the day.
I camSeonalid Lewise to the Fair and the Library has a large stand with a number of their helpful staff.

I was talking to Seonaid Lewis who told me the Library was doing 71 family history events throughout August! That is a fantastic number of presentations.

Their stand contained a plethora of useful things! They are obviously strongly committed to family history research!

A lot of time must have has gone into the development of these guides.

This was a particularly nice display.  This display relates to a photograph album that was found. So far no-one has been able to identify the owner. There are a range of lovely photographs within the album and the library staff have done some research and are hoping that someone coming to the fair may have further information about the album.

The other lovely thing the library does in the Lock-In where you get locked in the Library at closing time and can research all night. There are staff on hand to help you with your research and Seonaid also said that some people from the New Zealand Society of Genealogists attend to also help.

The next one is occurring 31st August, cost is $60 for which you also get fed nibbles and then pizza at midnight as well as the opportunity to devote time to research with some helpful experts on hand.

Aug 032013

Lots of Exhibitors!  I had a chance to get around an take some pictures of the booths before the Fair was officially open.
The New Zealand Society special interest groups were very well represented (and this isn’t all of them!) and once the Fair opened you couldn’t see the booths anymore for the numbers of people requesting research assistance

Aug 022013

The morning session today is devoted to schools. A number of classes will tour through today and hear about ways of tracing their family history. 

It is great to see the collaboration between the Education Department and the New Zealand Society of Genealogists.

Members of  the Society went all out and many dressed as someone from their own history.

The TV crew was there and showed some of the wonderful costumes.

And of course talked to Dr Jo Appleby who is the osteo-archeologist from Leicestershire who was involved in the Richard III excavation in the car park.

Dr Jo is giving a number of presentations on Richard III and the DNA testing work that was done to confirm he was indeed Richard III and not just some body in the carpark!

Dr Appleby waiting to be interviewed by NZ TV crew
Aug 012013

The New Zealand Family History Fair is being set up today ready for the opening tomorrow  August 2  through to the 4th.Friday morning is a special time for the schools and it is open to the

General Public :

Friday 2 August 1:30pm – 7pm

Saturday and Sunday 3 and 4 August 10am – 5pm

FREE entry to the Exhibition Hall

Vodafone Events Centre



There is a wide range of exhibitors as seen below in the table from the Family History Fair  website and there is also a wide range of seminars available including presentations from six International presenters as  well as a range of presenters from New Zealand. The seminar list is available on the website  Seminars are only $5 each and you choose which you would like to attend. Tickets are only available at the venue the Vodafobe Events Centre Manukau.
Where else are you going to be able to talk to such a huge range of exhibitors all in one place, all ready, eager and happy to help you with your family history questions?

AP Digital Consultancy
Archives NZ
Auckland Libraries
Central Auckland Research Centre
Auckland War Memorial Museum
Beehive Books
British Newspaper Archives
Colonial CD Books
Department of Internal Affairs
Archives NZ
National Library

NZ Births Deaths & Marriages

Facets of Genealogy
Family Search
Family Tree DNA (FTDNA)
(Families in British India)
Family Research Centre (FRC) and Library
Genealogy Shop – Books, CDs’& Charts
Hooked on Genealogy Tours
Inside History magazine
Kresy-Siberia Virtual Museum
Memories In Time
Mentis Ltd
Ministry for Culture and Heritage
Auckland War Memorial Museum
Museum of New Zealand
Te Papa Tongarewa

WW100 Programme Office

Names and their Origins
National Army Museum
National Library of NZ
NZ Births Deaths Marriages
NZ Society of Genealogists
New Zealand Micrographic Services
NZ Defence Force Archives
Past Print
Research Help – 17 key areas from Getting Started and Young Genies through to    New Zealand and Overseas
Timber Treasures
Unlock the Past
Waihi Arts Centre & Museum
WW100 Programme Office
Aug 012013

The horrible feeling when you find the blue screen of death, the hard drive that has totally crashed, the USB drive that no longer reads or maybe coming home to find the laptop gone….. let alone the flood, fires and other natural disasters that occur.

These things may still happen unfortunately but with regular back-ups the trauma of losing everything can be avoided.

The key is regular backups in multiple places. 

Regular is most important. GeneaBloggers (which really is the ultimate site for Genealogy Bloggers!) started the mantra of backup on the 1st of the month and it is a great reminder.

 It doesn’t matter what day it is as long as it is a regular occurrence but the 1st is such a convenient day to remember.

The cloud is my first back-up place I use Dropbox where I have a 110GB account. This gives me the added advantage as I have access to those files wherever I have an Internet connection whether I want to access them using my iPhone, my iPad, a computer at work, at a friend’s place or overseas.

I also have a Western Digital 4TB drive linked into my home network that is in a concealed location in my home (having had a friend who lost hers that was on her desk when they stole it as well as the laptop!) Any file that is changed is backed up to this drive.

I also do a monthly backup to another 4TB drive that is stored offsite. This is a rotational backup as there are two 4TB drives there and drive A comes home this month and then drive B comes home next month.

I am not going to give a detailed list of ways to do backups, and remember it is not just what is in your computer data files you need to backup as what about your blog, your photos on Flickr, your Tweets, emails online such as Gmail (as well as those on computer in Outlook or any of the other email programs) and anywhere else you have an online presence plus any item whose loss would cause you to lose precious research time. These would include Internet Favourites, program settings, and I am sure you can think of others.

The reason I am not giving that detailed list of resources is because Thomas MacEntee has already done it and it can be found here

So a little planning and setting up a system now will save those wishes for yesterday in the future.