Sunday, December 7, 2014

First World War galleries at the Australian War Memorial

Australia in the Great War is the Memorial’s new permanent exhibition on display in the First World War Galleries from 1 December 2014.
The exhibition presents the story of Australia in the First World War chronologically, covering all major theatres of operations: Gallipoli; the Western Front; Sinai and Palestine; and the war at sea. The events taking place on the home front and the immediate and enduring legacy of the war are also included.
The Memorial holds one of the world’s great collections of material related to the First World War. The First World War Galleries integrate a wide variety of items from this collection, including dioramas and other works of art; uniforms; medals; technology such as artillery and firearms; photographs; film; and personal items such as letters and diaries.

Commonwealth War Graves: Restoration Of Australian Headstones

The unique ‘Scrolling Stones’ headstones conceptualised by Australian forces admitted as patients at No. 1 Australian Auxiliary Hospital at Harefield Park, Middlesex, England during the First World War are to be restored in time for Anzac Day in April. Harefield (St Mary) Churchyard is recognised as one of the primary places of remembrance for Australians in the UK. The work that is being undertaken at the site involves lead lettering being inserted into the marble scrolls and new engravings
Commonwealth War Graves Commission website.

Society of Australian Genealogists December events

Tuesday 9 December (1.30pm - 3.30pm) - Take Your Family Back to the Auld Country
Join Susan Cooke of the Scottish Australian Heritage Council who will examine the link between Australian birth, death and marriage certificates and your Scottish heritage. Bookings essential. $20 ($30 non-members). 
  • Saturday 13 December (10.30am - 12.30pm) - Sydney Cemeteries
    In this session, Martyn Killion looks at Sydney’s major cemeteries and their records, with particular emphasis on what you can find online. Bookings essential. $20 ($30 non-members).
  • Wednesday 17 December (8.00pm - 9.00pm AEST) - Webinar - Britain's Colonial Wars
    Britain's period of colonial expansion in the 19th century was characterised by military adventurism abroad and rapid industrial development at home, spreading its culture, institutions and ideas across the globe. To provide background to your family's British migratory experience, military history enthusiast Peter Lloyd will provide an overview of the conflicts that occurred during this period of expansion. Bookings essential and limited to SAG members only. Price $10.00.

    Bolwarra heritage painting specialists win award

    From the Maitland Mercury report:
    A customer service award has capped a rewarding year for father and son Graham and Craig Hill.|The Bolwarra business G&RA Hill Painting, which specialises in heritage work, was nominated in the Australian Business Quality Awards and notified of the win last month.
    The judges were impressed with the quality of their work at Anambah House.

    Full article available at Maitland Mercury, Dec. 1, 2014.

    Wednesday, November 26, 2014

    Family Search: 120 Years of Pioneering Genealogy

    The ever growing popularity of online ancestry research and the broad range of inviting online family history activities. Elder Packer is the Executive Director of FamilySearch International (, formerly the Genealogical Society of Utah. 120 years ago today, the obscure nonprofit organization held its first meeting under the direction of its first president, Franklin D. Richards. Billions of historic records and millions of subscribers later, it has become a premier global leader in the online genealogy space helping more people than ever discover their ancestors.

    Inside History Magazine - November/December 2014

    Issue 25, the Nov-Dec 2014, issue of Inside History has a wealth of inspiring features and practical tips to help you trace your family tree and learn about the life your ancestor led. You’ll read about:
    • The latest free records online to help you find your family
    • Why Sydney Harbour’s Old Quarantine Station is the perfect historic city mini-break
    • How you could win a History Lovers trip to Norfolk Island worth $5,000, plus have your ancestor feature on our cover
    • A non-profit company leading the way in reuniting lost war medals
    • How to tell the difference between a ‘cottage loaf’ and a ‘kiss curl’ and why it can help in decoding the date of trickier family photographs
    • The amazing discovery of a “Dead Man’s Penny” buried in a Sydney backyard, and how it was returned to descendants by a thoughtful stranger
    • The centenary celebrations underway to commemorate Ernest Shackleton’s audacious trans-Antarctic expedition and the Australian photographer who captured their death-defying struggle
    • Resident expert Shauna Hicks helps piece together the puzzle of a marriage certificate riddled with errors
    • Inside History sits down for a chat with Christine Bramble, historian and author of Sisters of the Valley, a research project into WWI nurses
    • Take note of the latest historical events around Australia and New Zealand
    • Explore our reviews of the latest historical apps and books
    • We’re giving away 40 copies of Anzac Treasures – our biggest book giveaway ever!

    What Lies Beneath: Sydney underground history

    As ground is broken for each high-rise development, archaeological remains are unearthed and hidden histories discovered, offering a chance to see what lies directly underfoot.

    In Sydney we are knee deep in ruins. Our archaeological sites may well be sarcophagus-free zones but our underground discoveries offer more than muddy boots.  

    Parbury Ruins in the historic Millers Point district was unearthed in 2000 during the construction of a residential apartment block, revealing the footings of a 1820s two-bedroom cottage including the remains of a fireplace and veranda, and a building line perched on the very edge of the harbour. This archaeological gem is now preserved below the large residential complex and a great example of what lies beneath the modern concrete jungle.
    More ifnormation at Museums and Galleries New South Wales.