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Day 3 Congress 2015

March 29, 2015

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KEYNOTE ADDRESS: MEETING PEOPLE AT WAR ON THE HOME FRONT – MICHAEL McKERNAN, HISTORIAN

Michael gave us the backgrounds and stories of ordinary Australians who lost their live in WWI. His examples were very moving and made me want to learn more. I will definitely be buying his book – Gallipoli A Short History. I have long been interested in War history, but after hearing this address, will be making it more of a focus.

SESSION 1:. BANKRUPTS AND INSOLVENTS IN MID 19TH CENTURY ENGLAND – SUE REID

We heard about a bit of a rogue in Sue’s family, and the resources she used to keep track of him. I have an ancestor that I suspect may have left England for Australia, due to bankruptcy. This session has given me many ideas for my future research. It may have even given me a title for my future book!

SESSION 2:  HIDDEN GEMS, FINDING & USING UNUSUAL RECORD COLLECTIONS IN ENGLISH ARCHIVES – SIMON FOWLER

Simon spoke about the many unusual resources that are available at local record offices. Most of these are not online, and require a visit or hiring of a professional researcher to sight them. Many of these records, I hadn’t heard about before, so this was great information.

SESSION 3: ONE NAME STUDIES, WHAT USE ARE THEY TO YOU – HELEN SMITH

Helen explained how the one name studies work, and I now have huge regard for those that take them on, as there is a huge amount of work involved. Jones along with Smith is the most common surname, so there is no way I will be attempting a one name Jones study.

KEYNOTE ADDRESS:  MEN, WOMEN, SEX & DESIRE, FAMILY HISTORY ON AUSTRALIA’S FIRST FRONTIER – GRACE KARSTENS

The title of this address has been causing much chatter, so the room was almost full for the session. Grace addresses the importance of personal stories to understanding family history and to really explain what was happening in a community. There were many illustrations of families and relationships and their inter-connections.  This session gave a really good understanding of what life must have been like in the days of early settlement, when convicts were settling amongst the new community of settlers.

SESSION 4: HARNESS THE POWER OF BLOGGING FOR YOUR RESEARCH OR YOUR ONE PLACE STUDY – PAULEEN CASS

Of course, as a blogger, I was interested in this session, and picked up many tips for my new blog, a One Place Study of Axedale, Victoria

SESSION 5: BRING YOUR ANCESTORS TO LIFE. USING COURT OF PETTY SESSIONS RECORDS – SHAUNA HICKS

More information in this session on available resources. I’ve done a similar session previously, with Shauna. But it was a few years ago, and there is now more information available. So I thought I refresher would be a good idea. There have been a few court appearances among my ancestors, so the new information given here will definitely be useful.

Even though there is one more day of Congress to go yet, today is my last day. I need to get back home tomorrow, and at the moment am feeling a little sad that it is all over. I’ve loved the sessions, the new friends made, catching up with old friends. I’ve particulartly loved blogging and tweeting about Congress2015.

I am going home with a long, long “to-do” list and am wondering how I will have time for work.

Looking forward now to Congress2018 in Sydney!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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