Feb 112014

Sorry everyone for not blogging more frequently but have been too busy listening to the presenters.

We left Sydney on a gray day but at least it stopped raining.

We got ourselves on board and did a quick look around before catching up with friends.

We did the required lifeboat drill and then had dinner before heading up to Cleopatra’s Needle for the Meet and Greet of 245+ genealogists from the USA, Scotland, England, South Africa, New Zealand and from all over Australia.

These are the Geneabloggers with Mr Genea-Blogger Thomas MacEntee hiding in the back. Jill Ball handed out the blogging beads which have been worn by the bloggers in a variety of  creative ways including on name-tags, as bracelets, necklaces etc.

Thomas MacEntee kindly also provided some nice add-on tags (Australia and Geneabloggers)

Then off to set up my Internet. Only drawback for me for genealogy conference cruising is the cost of using ship’s internet.

It  has been a great conference with a very vary program. Computers, Scotland, Ireland, a fantastic military stream with Neil Smith, Family Historian workshops, scrap-booking talks, poetry and how to showcase your family history  in a different way, iPad workshops even two nights of observing the Southern skies.

There have been up to three streams of talks which, has at times meant being torn in multiple directions as to which talk to attend.

Chris Paton gave a talk on British and Irish Newspapers of which there are a number of ways to access including having a Commonwealth library card and also a State library card plus a Council library card as some are offered through these, a useful way of spending your tax dollars!

Remember the subscription sites and the online free sites as so much context can be found as well as all the gossipy bits, scandal, murder and mayhem.

Shauna Hicks did a new presentation on following your gold mining ancestors. This was very interesting and amazing how many people got the call and hoped to make their fortune. Even some of mine left  Brisbane to try their luck at the Gympie Goldfields (they also came back totally broke!). many of the gold miners followed the gold around Australia and some had even followed it in a number of countries such as the USA , New Zealand and then through the Australian colonies. Judy Webster has done some indexing of the Croyden Hospital admissions and there are people from many, many countries. So worth thinking about gold and where the current gold strikes were occurring if you have lost somebody. Shauna has a new book on Mining Ancestors which has been published by Unlock the Past.

I did my Document Analysis talk which was well received. It is interesting how many brickwalls can be totally demolished if you go back and thoroughly analyse each of your documents and extract every last clue.

Kerry Farmer gave a talk on immigration which was very well received. There were a number of differences in schemes between the various colonies at various times. It was not uncommon for someone to have a relative in another colony. My Anne Busby emigrated with her husband to Brisbane in 1882. In the 1850s three of her uncles and their families emigrated to the Geelong region in Victoria. Queensland was looking for stonemasons and offering free passage. Victoria at that time was not so I am a Queenslander!

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