Feb 112014

Day 3 we arrived in Melbourne and it was a shore day. I went off to the onshore seminar. There was a slight change of plan as Thomas was ill and unable to do his talks so I gave my Document Analysis talk and Kirsty Gray gave her West country Ancestors talk which was nice for me as I had missed it the night before.

Melbourne was sunny and warm but the highlight of the seminar was meeting Elizabeth Piper a “Young and Savvy” Genealogist pictured here with another Young and Savvy Genealogist Alona Tester. Elizabeth has been researching since she was 14 and even managed to do her Year 12 work experience program at the Genealogical Society of Victoria. How cool is that!

There are a lot of younger researchers who do good research and it is important that we all encourage them as they are the ones who will continue things in the future and who can bring new ideas and abilities to our societies (if we create a friendly environment). I started researching when I was 22 and there were a number of people back then who told me I was in the wrong place when I went to research. Obviously I ignored them and kept going back <G>

It was good to meet up again with my cousin Melissa Hallyburton. Melissa is descended from one of those Plumridge brothers that went to Victoria in the 1850s while my line went to Brisbane in 1882.

Then back to the Voyager of the Seas where the evening session was a panel discussion chaired by Thomas MacEntee on the “Future of Genealogy” There have been many changes to what is accessible and how it is accessible and it is interesting and amazing to think of what is to come and what new uses can be made of computing ideas and accessories for genealogy.

Then a late cocktail before bed.

Kirsty Gray started the day with a talk on the Guild of One Name Studies. I am a member and regular readers know that  I research the name Quested anywhere, anytime and also am the Queensland Regional Rep for the Guild and there are 20 guild members in Queensland.

Then I gave my Using Timelines for Family History presentation.

Alan Phillips working hard!

Apart from the joys of chronological listings showing what you have found, showing the gaps in the research and further research opportunities you can use timelines to showcase your research in different ways. They say a “picture can save a 1000 words” and this is very true but a pictorial representation can also stop a family member from running screaming in the opposite direction when you start talking about the family history. It is much better if you can subliminally work to get your family member to ask further  questions about the family and their life rather than try to force them to listen to you.

Shauna Hicks then gave a presentation on “Mapping Ancestors in Australia” which I attended but it meant that I missed Pauleen Cass talking on “Becoming a fan of FANs: let your family’s friends, associates and neighbours reveal more of your family’s history” and also missed Thomas MacEntee talking on “Celebrating a Life: keeping life stories sharable and organised using Saving Memories”  Saving Memories won the Innovators Award at this year’s RootsTech conference that just finished in Salt Lake City.

Then I listened to Chris Paton talking on the “Godly Commonwealth: discover Scottish Church records” a clear explanation of a very confused joining, breakaways and basically a spaghetti mess of different church formations over the time period and very good reasons why you may not be able to find that Scottish baptism on ScotlandsPeople!

The Family Historian users have been attending workshop sessions throughout the conference presented by Jane Taubman, a person with intimate knowledge of the program and a top level user from the UK.

Mel Hulbert gave a presentation at this time on “Restoring Family Photographs” of which I have heard good reports.

It is a terrible shame I can’t clone myself as it would be lovely if you could split yourself in three and attend all the presentations (and later after the conference send one of the clones to work, one to do the housework and the other could do research 24/7!

Neil Smith gave a presentation on “Tracing Australia’s British Redcoat Garrisons” (a topic on which he has also recently published a book with Unlock the Past. One I have ordered as I am tracking a Quested gentleman who was in Queensland pre-separation (as I found him giving evidence in a trial of a convict who had stolen some grain) then he went off to fight in India).

Then I did a MyHeritage presentation then dd a Research help Zone on Queensland research and after that was dinner before coming back to listen to Shauna Hicks talking on “Newspapers Online” and Trove was only a part of this so if you don’t know of the others you are really missing out!

Remember to look at the other bloggers such as Pauleen Cass, Jill BallAlona Tester,  to hear their thoughts as that way you will get to hear about pretty much all the presentations.  (There are other bloggers on board as well so worth doing a Google search of blogs  for 4th Unlock the Past cruise)

Looking down from the 11th Floor outside the Windjammer Cafe

Looking back from our balcony

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