Thursday, July 06, 2017

Soldier Settlement

The Last Battle by Bruce Scates documents the opportunities offered and in many cases the difficulties faced by returned servicemen following World War One.

Family History Researchers can search their Victorian First World War Soldier settler ancestors at Battle to Farm: WW1 Soldier settlement records in Victoria from Public Records Office of Victoria
The War ended in November 1918.  More than 112,000 Victorian men had enlisted  and 91,000 saw service overseas.  About 17,000 were killed.
In order to repay the sacrifice and help returned servicemen return to domestic life, men were offered to opportunity to farm.  The nationwide Soldier Settlement Scheme was established providing blocks of land on which it was hoped that families could rebuild their lives. Across Australia thousands of returned servicemen took up the challenge and reinvented themselves as farmers.

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Oxford Dictionary of Family Names in Britain and Ireland

Family History researchers have access to a brand new resource which is part of the Genealogy Reference Collection at Ivanhoe Library.

The Oxford Dictionary of Family Names in Britain and Ireland contains detailed information about the linguistic origins of more than 45,600 common and rare surnames. Each entry also includes how many bearers of the name were recorded on the 1881 and 2011 censuses, as well as its geographical distribution over time.

The creation of the four volume dictionary is the result of a four year project – the largest of its kind ever undertaken, with data sourced from medieval and modern sources such as tax records, church registers and census returns.

Some names have their origins in occupations, for example Webber and Baker. Other names can be linked to place such as Hill or Green.

Knowledge of the origin of surnames helps the family history researcher understand their own story and maps the origins of their ancestors.

Yarra Plenty Regional Library is the first Australian organisation to order this landmark reference tool from Oxford University Press.

Check these other resources to explore the origins of your surname and learn more via this video from the University of West Bristol England who were a partner on the project.

Friday, February 17, 2017

Rootstech 2017

One of the major conferences for the Genealogy industry and associated family researchers worldwide: Rootstech – has just concluded in Salt Lake City, Utah and by all accounts it was another huge success.

The international conference featured four days of seminars, presentations, product promotion and a huge showcase hall and the opportunity for many attendees to visit the Family History Library.

Some sessions are now available on line for a short time, including presentations on DNA, Jewish Genealogy, Tracing female lines, next steps in British Research and more. Visit  Rootstech  for more information

Rootstech 2018 dates are already set for February 28 – March 3 2018

The next major genealogy conference will be Who Do You Think You Are Live in Birmingham, England in early April 2017.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Geography of Surnames

The Geography of surnames is a new resource devoted to the study of English, Scottish and Irish surnames and should be of interest to family history researchers.
Surnames are examined from a geographic perspective, focusing on their distribution, patterns and origins.  Examples are drawn from areas as diverse as Cornwall, Wales, the Borders of Scotland and Ulster. In addition themes such as occupational and topographic surnames are examined from a geographic perspective, focusing on their distribution, patterns and origins.
The site also includes a list of recommended reading. Visit Yarra Plenty Regional Library's list of reading for Researching surnames.
Photo: State Library Victoria Digital Pool

Wednesday, January 04, 2017

Ryerson Index Update

The Ryerson Index is a free index resource to death notices appearing in Australian newspapers, dating back in some cases to 1831 (Sydney Morning Herald). While most of the entries relate to death occuring since 1970. The index is completely managed and contributed to by volunteers and is said to grow at a rate of over 100 entries per day. The site was updated on 31st December 2016 and now includes 320 newspapers with 5,856,742 entries including those from local Leader newspapers.
Ryerson recently  announced that a new facility has been added to the site whereby a search on GIVEN NAME only can be made. This will make it easier to locate those women with obscure given names who have married, but you don't know their married surname.
Searches have also been consolidated onto a single screen. You can now search on any one of the primary fields, with all other fields available to filter results.
Image: [Elderly woman sitting in front of a corrugated iron shed] ca 1890-1910 State Library Victoria

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Retiring Digger CD-ROMS

It is increasingly difficult to support genealogy CD ROM’s which use the Digger© software.  The software has not been updated in line with update of equipment and operating systems.  These products represent Victoria, Tasmania, Queensland, South Australia and Northern Territory births deaths and marriages indices, as well as other indices including the Victorian Inquest index and the Victorian marine birth, death and marriage index.  

A lot of the data can now be accessed online, including via Yarra Plenty Regional Library's e-resources Ancestry and Find My Past.  (access on any computer in every library via our website).  Also access for free at:
Trove  and more...
There has never been a better time to start family history research.  Remember it starts at home.  Speak to elderly relatives and identify your heritage family photographs today.