Saturday, 21 June 2014

What's in a Name????

Yesterday the Royal Australian Historical Society, in Sydney had a series of talks on the topic, Place Names as Historical Records: An Open-Air Archive. There were four speakers, Dr Joshua Nash, Dr Terry Kass, Angela Phippen and Bruce Baskerville and they covered a range of topics.

Bruce spoke on place names as historical records. How there are layers of names for places and how they evolved. Angela's talk was on houses with names of First World War battles. Who built them and the how to search to find them. Both were very informative.

Dr Joshua Nash spoke on the different names that are used on Phillip Island in the Norfolk Island Archipelago. This lead to a lively discussion on wether 'unofficial' names should also be listed with gazetted names.

Dr Terry Kass spoke on Official Histories and Records of Place Names: The NSW Geographical Names Board. This talk also spoke about how areas are known locally as one name but gazetted as another. An example of this is Mosman Bay, in Sydney Harbour. It is gazetted as Great Sirius Cove, a bit of a mouth full!

It was an interesting series of talks and I know I certainly learnt valuable search tips and ways to look at areas to find the layers of names.

The RAHS run various talks and the list is on their website

Thursday, 19 June 2014


Several weeks ago I approached the office of the Mayor with a request that they become our patron and heard nothing. I made a phone call after our last meeting and they were surprised that we hadn't had a reply and that they would get back to me. Well... today I received a letter from Councillor
Khal Asfour  accepting the position and welcoming us to the Bankstown's family of community organisations.

I hope you have a great weekend.

Tuesday, 3 June 2014

Last night's meeting

Our second meeting in our room saw us use the data projector, for the first time.

Rowan did an excellent talk on The Master Genealogist (TMG). He started with an overview as to why we need programs to enhance our research, this was very informative and then he showed us how the program works.  Different pages for children and siblings, along with source and citing features make it a very good program.

Teresa spoke about her program for the Mac, as when we went to connect the cable, it didn't fit.

I then set up my PC to show Brother's Keeper and as with all things new,  I couldn't get the screen to show on the wall. Much fiddling and pushing of buttons and we got it to work! It was weird as the computer screen was blank and I had to operate it by the mouse on the data screen, then use the keypad for entering information. Technology!

Brother's Keeper has been around for years and is the only one I have used, so I am biased in my review. I find it very simple and easy to use, with help just a mouse click (F1)  or an email away. It has a good selection of charts, trees, reports, with the ability to print photos on several of the reports.

Gerry then showed us his hand drawn tree, going back to the 1600's and it is going to be done in tapestry. I look forward to seeing the finished tree, it should be stunning.

There were discussions about how much we should upload to the internet, with the concern about privacy and people taking your information for their trees. Other topics were discussed and ideas were suggested, for future meetings.

We had 18 attend, with three visitors, Natalie, Bridgette and Kerin, from the Canterbury & District Historical Society. We also welcomed back Elaine from her across Australia trip, which did include meeting new cousins in Perth. It is also wonderful to see now familiar faces each month. Ours financial  members have now increased to 30.

Kerin will be our guest speaker in October. Craig has volunteered to speak on military matters at our November meeting.

I will be the guest speaker on 24 June at the Canterbury & District Historical Society meeting. Something I am looking forward to.

Until next time, Happy Ancestor Hunting!