Sunday, November 29, 2020

From the Archives - There's one in every family!

 Reposting this entry from 29 November 2010.

One of the photos from the original post is missing and some of the links are broken.  Since 2010 there have been three more family baptisms and one funeral at St Mary's. 

Monday, November 29, 2010

"There's one in every family!" or "6 Baptisms, 5 Weddings and a Funeral"

 I have been scratching my head as I wonder who or what to write about for the 100th edition of the Carnival of Genealogy.  After much ruminating I am writing about a place significant to our family history. I had previously blogged about St. Mary's in July and, as the Carnival creates an opportunity for my post to reach a wider audience, I am going to embellish and repost for the Carnival.

Our children have all been baptised and married at St Mary the Virgin Anglican Church in Waverley, NSW. The Church has also been the venue for some of our grandchildren's baptisms and the funerals of other family members.

St Mary the Virgin is an historic church in Birrell Street, Waverley . There is a short history of the Church at the Waverley Council website. A book on the history of the Church, Through the archway of the years : St. Mary's Church, Waverley, N.S.W., 1864-1964, can be found in the National Library of Australia. A list of the clergy who have served at St. Mary's can be found on the Church site.

The Church was designed by Edmund Blacket, a prominent Victorian architect and personal friend of the first rector, Stanley Mitchell. Blacket, who became the official Colonial Architect 1849-1854, was responsible for the design of many 19th century sandstone buildings in Sydney including St Andrew's Cathedral

St Mary's circa 1900 (Powerhouse collection)
  St Mary's foundation stone was laid on June 6th, 1863 and the Church was dedicated on May 13th, 1864. Additions and modifications have been made to the Church during the past 150 years.  The Church and Organ are listed on the NSW State Heritage Register and the Church on The Register of the National Estate.


1983 St. Mary's Christmas Pageant - Rev Terry Dicks and children including my four as angels and Joseph

In recent times our family has celebrated significant occasions at St. Mary's Anglican Church Waverley. A peek at the tags in my digital family album shows that I have several hundred photographs tagged St Mary's. As well as hatches, matches and dispatches there are photos of social events, confirmations, Christmas pageants and Sunday School events. The picture on the header of this blog is taken at the most recent family wedding at St. Mary's.

1986 - Confirmees

2009 Family Wedding - Rev Beth Spence




















2009 Family Christening - Rev Michael Spence

 St Mary's is a happy place as described in a 2004 article in the Anglicans Together Newsletter,  St. Mary's Church, Waverley : High and Happy.

1997 Family Wedding
 More recent news of the Parish is detailed in the snippets below from http://www.stmaryswaverley.org.au/page1/page12/page12.html


St Mary's is a significant place in our family history as so many family events took place in this beautiful Church.

Tuesday, November 24, 2020

From the Archives - Genea-Santa

 Back in December 2009 I posted on this blog my letter to Genea-Santa. My requests would be similar today. What's on your list for Genea-Santa in 2020?

BTW I have removed the dead links from original post.

Wednesday, November 18, 2020

21st Century Genealogy - 2010 Style

It's a geneaversary for me today. Back in 2010 I was dipping my toes into the water as a genealogy presenter with my very first presentation. Since that date I have given numerous talks at libraries, societies and conferences in Australia and overseas. Although currently all I present are online  I prefer being in a room where I can eyeball and involve the attendees.

Photo: Courtesy of Mosman Library

Discovery of this auspicious occasion was serendipitous. Yesterday I went fishing in the archive of my presentations on an external hard drive and came across 21st Century Genealogy, a talk I gave at Mosman Library on this day in 2010. In a subsequent blog post I talked about my experience at Mosman and my second presentation that same week which was for UnlockthePast

The first thing I noticed was that I hadn't used Powerpoint to deliver my talk, I created the talk in Dreamweaver, a web authoring tool that I had been using in my working life. I moved on to Powerpoint around 2011.

Home page of my presentation

It was interesting to look back on my content. Web 2 was a buzzword in 2010. The Did you know 4? link had me perplexed. Turns out it was a link to this video which I played during the presentation.

In the page on the 21st Century Genealogist I reflected on past and current practices (some of which have changed since 2010). I emphasised that it was good practice to combination of 20th and 21st century practices ie select  the best approach for each task at hand.

Monday, November 16, 2020

Concerning Cemeteries

 If there's one thing I like it's a cemetery, another thing I enjoy is responding to Geneameme challenges from fellow family historians.

In recent weeks I have been a bit snowed under with various geneactivities and I haven't attended to one item on my "To Do" list, that is to respond to Carmel Galvin's Concerning Cemeteries Geneameme. My calendar for this week is reasonably clear so first task on my ticket is to think about cemeteries.

It's never too late to respond to a geneameme so, please, join in. Carmel said:

"I look forward to reading a great variety of experiences and viewing the accompanying photos. Please add a link to your blog post in the comments below and I will list them all in a blogpost."

I have illustrated the responses that follow with a few of my cemetery photos.

A beautifully tended plot or cemetery
My prize for the most beautifully tended cemeteries goes to The Commonwealth War Graves Commission for all of their sites. Mr GeniAus and I have visited CWGC cemeteries in Belgium, Egypt, England, France, Singapore,Thailand and Turkey. Each site  has been very well maintained, they are fitting memorials to our fallen.


Tyne Cot, Belgium



El Alamein, Egypt


Kranji War Memorial, Singapore


Overawed by the size 
Rookwood Cemetery, where many members of our family rest is, according to Billion Graves, the sixth largest cemetery in the world. 

My Maternal Grandparents : Frank Duncan and Ethel Jane Pusell

Coldest (temperature wise!)/ hottest
It's a toss up between Greenland and Iceland for the coldest. It was fairly cold in summer at this cemetery at Eyjafjörður  in Iceland. We attended a concert given by some local girls in the Church there. 

Eyjafjörður  in Iceland

Smallest - most intimate
There's only one grave on this site at Kagoshima Japan.




Largest - tombstone or graveyard
Pro Hart's Grave in Broken Hill is fairly impressive

Pro Hart's Grave, Broken Hill Cemetery

Most memorable, monumental or unforgettable
One of Pro Hart's neighbours, Joycelyn Daisy Delbridge (nee Harvey) has an unforgettable headstone.
Was a genealogist responsible for all the names on the headstone?




Oldest grave found or oldest established cemetery visited
These headstones in the Punic Cemetery in Carthage, Tunisia looked rather old to me.


Punic Cemetery, Carthage, Tunisia

Simple marker 
In contrast to the headstones in the Commonwealth War Graves Cemeteries the graves in the American Cemetery in Manila in the Philippines are quite simple. The cemetery was beautiful  and maintained to a high standard.

Manila American Cemetery

The unexpected
I was surprised that all of the graves in this Communist Cemetery in Tirana, Albania were exactly the same.



Best find ever
The best find ever is, for me, the most recent big find. 

Last year we visited the Fulneck Moravian Settlement in Pudsey and met the archivist in the Church there. We consulted original records with the archivist, Rev. Hilary Smith, who gave us directions to the Moravian Burial Ground at Gomersal where we found the burial site of Mr GeniAus' 4xGreat-Grandmother ,Betty Birkby

Mr GeniAus - Moravian Burial Ground, Gomersal

The grave marker of Betty Birky later Midgley

Locals lived here
From the washing hanging on a line and clothes on hangers it looks like someone may have lived in this mausoleum in an old cemetery we toured in Manila, Philippines

Washing Day!

At the crematorium
Here I must mention a book that I read and enjoyed. The author writes about her time working as an assistant in a crematorium. 
Smoke Gets in Your Eyes: And Other Lessons from the Crematorium by Caitlin Doughty is a good read. I borrowed the eBook from a local library



Closest relatives are buried here e.g. parents, sibling/s
Mum, Dad, Paternal Grandparents, Uncles and Aunts can be found in Botany Cemetery now called Eastern Suburbs Memorial Park. After Mum passed away I ordered a new headstone as the lettering had faded on the one on which we had Dad's name inscribed. I hope the new headstone of "Best Black Granite" lasts longer than the first.

Elsie Harriet Duncan and Allan John Curry - Headstone

Most humorous incident
It wasn't funny at the time but we can laugh about it now. 

My maiden Aunt, Elsie May Duncan, is buried in the plot adjacent to my grandfather, Frank Duncan. When we turned up at Rookwood for my Grandmother's funeral in 1988 the gravediggers had opened the wrong grave and were set to bury Nanna , Ethel Jane Pusell, in with her sister-in-law. Nanna would probably have been happy with that but her daughters certainly were not. One of my Aunts, who was quite hysterical, put on quite a performance.

We all packed up and went off to the wake to give the diggers time to right the wrong. Just a couple of family members returned to the cemetery a few hours later to make sure that Nanna was put in her right place.

PS I'm adding a link to a blog post about surprise we found when on safari in Zambia.
http://geniaus.blogspot.com/2019/09/on-safari.html

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