Thursday, September 26, 2019

On Safari

Last year during our holiday in Africa we stayed at Sussi and Chuma Lodage in the Mosi-oa-Tunya National Park in Zambia.

As well as doing a boat ride down the Zambezi River we visited Victoria Falls and went on several safari drives. On the most memorable safari drive we visited a group of white rhinos that were under 24 hour armed protection. 

Armed guards escort to visit the white rhinos
On our last safari drive in the Mosi-oa-Tunya National Park we saw a few zebras, some other wildlife and lovely vistas of the Zambezi River. I got most excited with what we found in a clearing in the park. It was a sign from Northern Rhodesian times that declared the area as a National Monument.

This genealogist did not expect to find a cemetery in the middle of a National Park on Zambia! You can read about the Old Drift Cemetery here This site gives details of the persons buried at the cemetery .

You can read the story of The Old Drift settlement here

Our guide was bemused when I asked him to stop so that we could take some photos of the site. Fellow genies will know why I needed to stop. Thankfully this wasn't an area frequented by big cats.

Graves among the trees

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Trove Tuesday - Pusells Gazetted

I haven't done any serious searching for my Pusell line on Trove since the Government Gazettes came on line. For this TroveTuesday post I decided to go looking.

The Pusell mob got quite a few mentions some of which I'll share here . The earliest is for a land lease in Rockley, NSW for my convict ancestor,  James Pusell.

James Pusell and his wife Maria Tucker who were my Great-Great Grandparents had a lot of children to feed!

1875 'Apprehensions.', New South Wales Police Gazette and Weekly Record of Crime (Sydney : 1860 - 1930), 14 July, p. 208. , viewed 24 Sep 2019,

My Great-Grandfather, James Pusell, found himself in a similar situation. 

1891 'Apprehensions, &c.', New South Wales Police Gazette and Weekly Record of Crime (Sydney : 1860 - 1930), 4 November, p. 374. , viewed 24 Sep 2019,

Great-Uncle Bill also found himself on the wrong side of the law.

1913 'First Offienders Discharged under Crimes Act of 1900.', New South Wales Police Gazette and Weekly Record of Crime (Sydney : 1860 - 1930), 19 March, p. 130. , viewed 24 Sep 2019,
It seems as though Great-Uncle Dick wasn't faring too well in 1920.
1920 'IN BANKRUPTCY.', Government Gazette of the State of New South Wales (Sydney, NSW : 1901 - 2001), 3 September, p. 5275. , viewed 24 Sep 2019,
These few snippets demonstrate the value of using Government Gazettes for family history research. These references have provided contemporary confirmation of Names, Places, Dates and Activities of my ancestors.

Friday, September 20, 2019

Married at Petersham

On 20th September 1941 James William Ball and Daphne Edith Williamena Gillespie were united in marriage at All Saints Church, Petersham, New South Wales.

The following photo is of the newlywed couple with the Bride's siblings.

L-R Douglas Gillespie, James Ball, Daphne Gillespie, James Gillespie, Merle Gillespie

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

10th Consecutive Year

In the mail today I received an invitation to be a @RootsTechConf Rootstech Ambassador from Australia for the tenth consecutive year. Of course I accepted this immediately - it is such an honour to be able to promote genealogy downunder to the Rootstech Family while learning about our field from the world's best presenters.

I will be attending virtually this year. I will miss seeing my genimates in the flesh in Salt Lake City but I will take advantage of the virtual offerings from Salt Lake City and join in on social media with the many other #notatrootstech genies who attend virtually. 

The theme for Rootstech 2020 is “The Story of You.” This is  fitting and important for those of us who spend so much time concentrating on our ancestors. We must also remember to record our stories for future generations.

This was brought home to me last weekend when my 10 year old granddaughter said "Why do you have a laptop Gummy?" The 12 grandchildren call me Gummy, but that's another story. I pulled out my laptop and proceeded to show her some of the things I had there. We looked at my blogs that recorded some stories of her ancestors, we looked at some of the powerpoints I had prepared for the presentations I give and some of the Facebook pages I manage. 

What really captured her imagination was my family website, GeniAus Family Site. She enjoyed playing around with the interactive tree in public mode. When she asked about the nameless people on her tree we got into a talk about privacy on the internet. Although she could work out which Living female she was she wanted to see her name displayed so I logged in we looked at the Private View where she could see the details for her parents, siblings and cousins.

Public view of tree on GeniAus Family Site
We played around for nearly half an hour but I shut down before boredom set in. Granddaughter sat back and said "Gummy, I didn't know you did all that."

Do your granddchrilden know all about the things you do? 

If you want to be in on the Rootstech action and learn about sharing "The Story of You"you can register for Rootstech 2020 in Salt Lake City here

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Trove Tuesday - Lake Macquarie History

A wonderful way to learn about the history of one's local area is via the newspapers that are digitised on Trove.

My Scenic Bewitchery 
Recently I became President of The Lake Macquarie Family History Group. While I am on top of family history research I am, as a newish resident, inadequate in my knowledge of my local area. To rectify this today I turned to Trove with a simple search "lake Macquarie history"~5 .

The top three hits which I will now read are from a series published in 1931. Perhaps you may be interested in reading them too but please note the first article is last in this list..

    The Voice of the North (NSW : 1918 - 1933) Tuesday 10 March 1931 p 13 Article
    ... LAKE MACQUARIE ITS HISTORY AND SCENIC BEWITCHERY. (by "Wonga") (Continued.) This great sheet of ... 643 words
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 6,384.175)
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 6,384.175)
    The Voice of the North (NSW : 1918 - 1933) Friday 10 April 1931 p 13 Article
    ... LAKE MACQUARIE ITS HISTORY AND SCENIC BEWITCH ERY. (Concluded). (by "Wonga") Reaching Bulba Island ... 722 words
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 6,360.61)
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 6,360.61)
    The Voice of the North (NSW : 1918 - 1933) Tuesday 10 February 1931 p 13 Article
    ... I LAKE MACQUARIE | ITS HISTORY AND SCENIC BEW1TCHERY. (by "Wonga") HISTORICAL W' 5 The eastern ... 581 words

Friday, September 13, 2019

A Local Facebook Page

I chaired my first committee meeting as President of the Lake Macquarie Family History Group this afternoon. I was thrilled that they agreed to my proposal to have a Facebook page for the Group. So you can guess what I have been busy doing this evening.

Wednesday, September 4, 2019

World Class Event in Sydney

I am still on a high after spending three days at the DNA Downunder event in Sydney last week. It has taken me a while to pen this last post because I have so much to say about this event which was world class. I wore my Ambassador Badge with pride during the event.

Kudos for taking a risk and staging such a professional event must go to Alan Phillips from Unlock the Past. Alan has been staging genealogy roadshows for several years but with DNA Downunder he took this event to another level. Right from the start the event promotion, including the appointment of Ambassadors, was top notch. 

Alan Phillips directing proceedings at DNA Downunder
 The venue in Sydney was excellent and only the most persnickety could find fault. The little things that make a great conference stand out from a good conference like smooth online registration, name tags, lanyards, programs (both online and in hard copy), signage, a strict timetable that was adhered to, opportunities to spend a few $$$ and get advice from vendors and societies coupled with an amazing star presenter, Blaine Bettinger, with solid supporting acts made this conference a success. Without the support of Alona and Anthea, the two family members and co-workers who are Alan's right hand women, this show would not have been such a fantastic event.

Alona and Anthea 

On a personal level I got so much from the feast of lectures on the program and took away a Doggie Bag full of ideas and tips to apply to my DNA research.I always enjoy geneaevents while I am there; I find many talks interesting and entertaining with content that is nice to know but they are not educative or inspiring.  DNA Downunder was an educative experience of the highest calibre.

Eager genies - Ready to learn
I attended every one of Blaine's 14 lectures, I had many items reinforced and learnt something new from all of them. As I predicted I am suffering from Blaine Overload but that is a positive outcome. As well as learning about methodology and resources I particularly enjoyed the emphasis on the ethics of DNA use and the constant reminders of the emotional effects that DNA discoveries can have on those involved. 

Blaine, a a genuine nice guy, spent so much time chatting with attendees

Shelley Crawford
I must apologise to the other speakers on the program as, because I went to all of Blaine's talks, I only managed to go to two other presentations. There was no way I was going to miss my genimate Shelley Crawford's talk so I was lucky she spoke when Blaine was having a break. Shelley was one of the first Australians to enter the world of genetic genealogy.

Shelley had a full house
One of the first people I encountered when I went to take my seat was Blaine. Getting  a hug and a hello from him set the scene for a super event. 

Blaine and GeniAus
I revelled in the out of school opportunities that a face to face conference offers. I caught up with some of my dear online pals, genimates from all over the place, loads of geneabloggers and met several genies for the first time.

Geneabloggers at DNA Downunder 
I just hope that Alan hosts a similar event in the future. These events educate, energise and enthuse our family history community.


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