Thursday, April 10, 2014


Microfilm resources held at the library have now been consolidated and can be accessed at Mill Park Library in the J. W. Payne Room for local and family history research.
Resources include:
Kilmore Advertiser 1874 - 1877
Some of the above titles are available for restricted time periods on Trove.
Berrima to Goulburn NSW 1841 census
City of Whittlesea Rate books 1884 – 1922
Various Council documents from the Shire of Epping, City of Whittlesea, Epping Roads Board 

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Nunawading WW1 Stories

As part of the Anzac Centenary the Australian Institute of Genealogical Studies is undertaking a project to commemorate the lives of those Australians from the Nunawading area who served in any capacity during World War One.
They are seeking descendants of men from the present day areas of Nunawading, Blackburn, Mitcham and Vermont who served in this conflict and who may have stories and photos they would be willing to share.
A publication is planned to be released in August 2014.
Contact Shirley at

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Poppies for Rememberance

As part of the 2015 Anzac Commemoration, the 5000 Poppies project will be “planting” a field of more than 5000 poppies in Federation Square Melbourne as a stunning visual tribute to Australian servicemen and women for more than a century of service in all wars, conflicts and peacekeeping operations.  Over 9000 poppies have in fact been collected to date.

Members of Yarra Plenty Regional Library are asked to contribute to the project by joining a library craft group or dropping in the home made poppies to  any branch library

Poppies can be knitted, crocheted, felted or sewn from any materials. Crafters are encouraged to dedicate their poppy to a member of their family who served in World War One.

Craft patterns and dedication forms can be found on the 5000 Poppies website

Poppies will be collected and displayed together with their dedications in libraries for Remembrance Day  November 11 2014 before being contributed to the Anzac Day display in Federation Square in 2015.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Trove update

The following is an update from the National Library of Australia's Trove team:

The  most exciting news is that a new Trove blog has been launched. The first post is called 'A starting point , which is exactly what we think Trove is. We'll be writing posts about what's in Trove, who works on Trove and how you can get the most out of Trove for your research.

Here is a summary of the new collections which have come into Trove in the last couple of months:

Austroads have just started making their reports available through Trove with 710 items already available. Austroads is the association of Australian and New Zealand road transport and traffic authorities.

The University of Sydney's scholarly publishing arm, ePress, is contributing open access books on a variety of subjects, and includes titles like Locating Suburbia, A World Proof Life, the story of Australian novelist Eleanor Dark, and Bourke: Our Yarns, stories and ideas from the Aboriginal people of Bourke. There are 20 titles at present, with more to follow.

The Gold Museum Ballarat is now contributing over 54,000 records to Trove. The records include such gems as a collection of chocolate boxes, photograph albums, and postcards held by the museum.

Berrima District Historical Society's image collection consists of 717 photographs dating back to the early 20th century. The highlight of the collection is 106 photographs of World War 1 German internees. The collection also contains portraits of prominent residents of the
Berrima region, images of the Mittagong Railway Centenary and class and staff photos from local schools.

If you'd like to catch up with the new content we added in 2013, you can find information about that in our forum

That's all for now. Happy Trove-ing.

Monday, February 03, 2014

Teviot Genealogy Lecture Tour

Federation of UK Family History Societies Vice President Lady Mary Teviot is returning to Yarra Plenty Regional Library.  Her March lecture tour will provide valuable tips for your UK family history research at the following sessions:
Genealogical Geography
Lalor Library
Saturday 1 March
2.00 pm - 3.00 pm
Diamond Valley Library
Monday 3 March
1.30 pm - 2.30 pm
Watsonia Library
Wednesday 5 March
1.00 pm - 2.00 pm
Rosanna Library
Thursday 6 March
11.00 am - 12 noon
Ivanhoe Library
Friday 7 March
2.00 pm - 3.00 pm

Monday, January 27, 2014

Planning a research trip

Who Do You Think You Are Live 2013

This time last year I was preparing for my study tour – first stop was Who Do You Think You Are Live, a major genealogy conference held in London each year. (Follow my blog posts about it here)  I have just returned from another (personal) trip overseas – hence the hiatus in blog posts.  I hope everyone has a successful year for their family history research, perhaps it will be the time to break down that elusive brick wall.
If you are planning a research trip overseas or indeed just a holiday, you may wish to consider timing it to include attending a conference or genealogy seminar day.  Shows such as this indeed inspire and invigorate our family history research with the opportunity to hear and meet with expert speakers and professionals in their field as well as explore the vendor hall which includes commercial companies as well as family history societies, booksellers and more.
To help plan your trip sites such as Conference Keeper (for genealogy) is a good resource to look at.
In addition, one day courses and seminars may fit into your schedule better.
The Society of Genealogists  in London publish their program of events twelve months ahead.  You can view and book these courses online. The Federation of Family History Societies in conjunction with GENUKI publish a calendar of events at GENEVA 
In preparation for your trip, further tips include
*Completing your Australian end of your research as much as possible, including date of arrival of pioneer ancestors.
* Completing online research as much as possible, using commercial websites, search engines and sites such as FamilySearch.  You need as much information as possible including full names, dates and specific places.
*Research the facilities that you wish to visit.  In the UK these may include The National ArchivesLondon Metropolitan Archives and the Society of Genealogists. Many of these organisations have partnered with commercial and non commercial organisations to place their records online which you can access in the comfort of your own home or library. These may include digitised images of original records including census documents.
*Locate local Archive facilities via ArchiveGrid and Archives in Scotland and the National Archives (UK) ARCHON Directory. (For Australian archives check out Directory of Archives in Australia)
*GENUKI is also a good resources for United Kingdom and Ireland. Information on local archives and libraries can also be accessed here.
*Visit the websites of these facilities, many offer advice for visiting and it is worth noting simple things like opening hours to make best use of your time.  You may consider that paying a full membership fee with all of its benefits may be better than paying a day’s research fee for example.
*Following these organisations on social media including YouTube, Facebook and Twitter will keep you up to date and assist in your planning.  You may wish to allow time to attend a free exhibition for example.
*For smaller organisations such as Family History Societies or Cemeteries it may be advisable to make contact well ahead of time, this may provide the opportunity for a staff member or volunteer to do some research on your behalf ahead of your visit.
*Do not overlook the local public library on your visit.  Public libraries provide access to unique local history collections that may not be readily accessible elsewhere.
*Have your key information available.  A small computer, ipad or smart phone will be of benefit on your travels.  Internet access via purchase of a local sim card or look for local wifi spots should also be considered.
DropBox is a ” free service that lets you bring your photos, docs, and videos anywhere and share them easily”
Ancestry now has an app which makes it easy to access your own online tree.  Other apps of possible use is the Research Logger which  keeps track of the research that you have done.
*Set yourself a goal.
*If you are lucky enough to be visiting relatives, ask to see all their related documents and photos and make copies.  Recording an oral history interview and taking photos is also a great idea.
*Don't forget your camera, for relative visits and photo taking in cemeteries and "now" photos of the places where your ancestor once lived. Make sure the battery is charged and carry a spare.  Some cameras now have the ability to record the GPS location with the photo.  It can also log the GPS data of where the camera has been. Make sure you have turned this on.
*Download your photos to a small computer and/or online sharing sites such as Facebook or Flickr. This serves as security in case you lose or damage your camera or photo card.
Genealogy tourism is trending as part of the future of the genealogy industry.  We are already seeing this in the growth of conferencing at sea with Australia’s Unlock thePast Cruises 
There are also opportunities for travel evolving around the Centenaryof World War One
As a final note this blog post by Cataloguing in Gippsland on etiquette for visiting a collection is worth a read.
The Genies Down Under Podcast Edisode 29 February 2014 will feature as its main topic "Ancestor homeland stuff: how to plan a visit of a lifetime" which may be of interest.

In the meantime I am look forward to “attending” some conferences vicariously in coming weeks - the WDYTYA Live  event February 22- 24 online via twitter and blog posts and Rootstech 
the major genealogy and technology conference held in Salt Lake City Feb 6-8.

Best wishes with your genealogy research in 2014.

Wednesday, December 04, 2013

Public Records Office Victoria

Public Records Office Victoria hold a number of records relating to the Victorian State Government.  Think about how your ancestor interacted with the government and which department that may have created a record. Records date from 1836.
The researcher landing page is a good introduction.
Free online indexes  include passenger lists, wills and probate, education and more.