Society of Australian Genealogists


April 2017

An electronic newsletter for family historians from the
Society of Australian Genealogists

120 Kent St, Sydney NSW 2000, Australia
Website -
Tel: (02) 9247 3953
Fax: (02) 9241 4872 

  • Croker Prize for Biography - entries close soon
  • Irish Family History Day
  • Annual General Meeting - 13 May


  • What's on in May


  • The Family History Guide



Browse SAGs online bookshop for a great collection of family history books, CDs and software.

  • NEW - Family History for Beginners and Beyond (15th Edition)
  • NEW - The Family Tree Guide to DNA Testing and Genetic Genealogy
  • NEW - How to Write Your Personal or Family History
  • Family Historian 6
  • Getting Started with Family Historian 6


  • Subscribe or alter your subscription to these newsletters

Croker Prize for Biography - entries close soon

The deadline to get entries in for this year's Croker Prize for Biography is Wednesday 31 May, so it's time to get writing. The theme is 'A Tough Life' and entries need to be in the form of an 800-1000 word biography. More details here.

Irish Family History Day

We've had such a great response to the Irish Day being held on Thursday 25 May that we've now moved this to another venue to accommodate more people. The seminar will take place in Glover Cottages at 124 Kent Street (next door to Richmond Villa). It will feature Fintan Mullan and Gillian O'Reilly from the Ulster Historical Foundation and further details can be found here.

Annual General Meeting - 13 May

The Society's Annual General Meeting will be held on Saturday 13 May at 4.15pm at Richmond Villa. More information is available here.


A chronological list of all activities is now available for online viewing and bookings here. You can also phone Monday to Saturday during office hours on 9247 3953 or book over the desk during library hours Tuesday to Thursday and Saturday.

All activities are held at Richmond Villa, 120 Kent Street unless otherwise specified.

  • Available until 8 May 2017 - Webinar Season Ticket - May to July 2017
    Only available until 8 May 2017. By booking a Webinar Season Ticket you will be able to view every standard webinar we hold between May-July, either live or by watching the recording later. You book and pay once. We'll set you up in each webinar and send you the confirmation link. And in addition you'll get one webinar free - so this quarter you get 6 for the price of 5. The webinars covered by the Season Ticket this quarter are: Introduction to DNA testing (10 May), Archives in Queensland (15 May), Aboriginal people in government records (17 June), Finding and using German church records (21 June), DNA: I've done my test, what's next (10 July) and Guide to Australian BDMs (18 July). Please note the Season Ticket does not cover virtual events or webfests - these have to be booked separately.
  • Wednesday 3 May (8.00am - 4.00pm) - Tour of State Archives NSW, Kingswood - BOOKED OUT!
  • Saturday 6 May (10.00am - 3.00pm) - Introduction to family history
    This session will suit both absolute beginners and anyone who needs a refresher or guidance. Learn how to get started and the basics of research. Get hints on strategies, tools and record collections. Morning and afternoon tea provided. BYO lunch. Presenter: Melissa Hulbert. Bookings essential. $45 ($70 non-members).
  • Wednesday 10 May (10.00am - 11.00am) - Webinar matinee - Introduction to DNA testing
    Louise Coakley, genealogist from the Cairns & District Family History Society, will introduce you to using DNA testing as a tool in your research. Learn the basics required to get started: the types of tests, who to test, where to test, how to test, how much it costs, what you get and practical applications. Presenter: Louise Coakley. Bookings essential. $12 members only.
  • Thursday 11 May (10.30am - 12.30pm) - Writing Discussion Group - The rocky road to publication
    From embryonic idea to a book in the hand is a long journey. Historian Ann will share with you the surprises, secrets, laughter, tears and sleepless nights she encountered along the way to producing her latest books A Light in the Window, Harper’s Mansion Berrima and A Man of Many Parts, the Life and Times of Edward Charles Close. Presenter: Ann Beaumont. Bookings essential. $10 ($15 non-members).
  • Saturday 13 May (10.30am - 12.30pm) - Family Tree Maker User Group
    Join other users of this popular family history software program for insights, ideas and opportunities to share tips and ask questions. Convenor: Larry Czarnik. Bookings essential. $10 ($15 non-members).
  • Saturday 13 May (1.30pm - 3.30pm) - The Master Genealogist User Group
    Bring along your laptops, your questions and your tips to share with other users for TMG. Gerard will be exploring ways to move data between TMG and Family Historian, including modifications and caveats. Rowan will be looking at data enhancement in TMG through the use of the new FamilySearch facilities, including family trees. Convenor: Bruce Fairhall. Bookings essential. $10 ($15 non-members).
  • Monday 15 May (8.00pm - 9.00pm) - Webinar - Archives in Queensland
    Tips for finding records in government archives that can help you with your family history research in Queensland. Presenter: Helen V Smith. Bookings essential. $12 members only.
  • Thursday 18 May (10.30am - 12.30pm) - Do the right thing: Etiquette and ethics for the family historian
    Family historians share and borrow information and resources. Conflicts can arise in dealing with other genealogists. This presentation will make suggestions for dealing with conflicts of interest, information sharing, copyright and plagiarism, and discuss general etiquette for interactions in the genealogy world. Presenter: Jill Ball. Bookings essential. $22 ($35 non-members).
  • Friday 19 May (10.30am - 12.30pm) - Hands On @ 379 - Ancestry
    Learn how to access the vast amount of genealogical information held on the Ancestry website. Limit 14. An afternoon session will be run if there are sufficient bookings. Place your name on the waiting list and we’ll contact you if an afternoon session is to go ahead. Presenter: Kerry Farmer. Bookings essential. $35 ($50 non-members).
  • Saturday 20 May (10.30am - 12.00pm) - New Zealand Research Group - Child's Play
    Researching children in 19th century New Zealand. Life, school, law and church will be the key areas of focus. See what records are available and how finding children can help you find their parents and family. Convenor: Pauline Weeks. Bookings essential. $10 ($15 non-members).
  • Thursday 25 May (10.00am - 4.00pm) - Irish family history day
    This is a rare chance to hear an overseas specialist in Irish family history. The program will be on the SAG website when available. Morning and afternoon tea provided. BYO lunch. Presenter: Fintan Mullan, Ulster Historical Foundation, Belfast. Bookings essential. $55 ($70 non-members).
  • Saturday 27 May (10.30am - 12.30pm) - English Research Group - Cemeteries in England
    Cemeteries in England underwent an enormous change around 1850 so why did this change occur? This discussion will look into the reasons and include other aspects relating to burials, the past history of many cemeteries in London and other cities in England, and where records can be located. Convenor: Pauline Kettle. Bookings essential. $10 ($15 non-members).
  • Wednesday 31 May (10.15am - 3.30pm) - Parramatta Female Factory & St John's Cemetery Tour - BOOKED OUT!

The Family History Guide

The Family History Guide is a free learning, research, and training centre for genealogy. It is aimed at both beginner and experienced genealogists.

The site includes introductory information on computers, family history, how to's on sites such as FamilySearch, Ancestry and FindMyPast. There are also nine projects in the guide which you can work through to learn and apply skills to your research. While many of the projects simply contain links to other sites and resources, the Guide could be used as starting point for researchers seeking information on a particular topic. You can browse the site or create a free account to track your progress through the site.


Visit our bookshop at 2/379 Kent Street, where we're open 10am to 4pm on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday. Our great collection of family history book titles is also available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week online, where you'll find local histories, CD-ROMs, charts and genealogical software - all at competitive prices!

When you place your order online, the Australia Post Calculator will calculate the correct postage fees according to the weight of your order.

NEW - Family History for Beginners and Beyond (15th Edition) - $36.00
This popular reference guide is back in stock. Extensive references for beginners and the more experienced family historian. Softcover book, 25cm, 273 pages. Compiled by Danny O'Neill et al, The Heraldry and Genealogy Society of Canberra Inc, 15th Edition, 2017 [More detail]

NEW - The Family Tree Guide to DNA Testing and Genetic Genealogy - $48.00
How to Harness the Power of DNA to Advance Your Family Tree Research. Unlock the secrets in your DNA! Discover the answers to your family history mysteries using the most-cutting edge tool available. This plain-English guide is a one-stop resource for how to use DNA testing for genealogy. Whether you’ve just heard of DNA testing or you’ve tested at all three major companies, this guide will give you the tools you need to unpuzzle your DNA and discover what it can tell you about your family tree. Softcover, 240 pages, indexed. Blaine T Bettinger, Family Tree Books 2016 [More detail]

NEW - How to Write Your Personal or Family History (If you don't do it, who will?) - $37.00
This is a practical, and encouraging, how-to book from a long-time teacher of personal and family history writing. Katie Funk Wiebe helps beginning memoir writers get started collecting the stories of their lives. She gives hints for recalling distant memories and tracking down family heirlooms. This is a serious but accessible resource for undertaking your personal or family history writing. In these pages, you'll find: Tips on writing, exercises to prod the memory, and advice on looking at the broad scope of a well-lived life. As Wiebe writes, "You've been living 24 hours every day, making decisions, objecting to certain ideas, endorsing others, and interacting with family and co-workers," the author writes. "I plan to convince you that if you took time to reflect, you'd find lots of meaningful stuff going on." Softcover, 23cm, 240 pages. Katie Funk Wiebe, Good Books 2017 [More detail]

Family Historian 6 - $80.00
Allows direct import of The Master Genealogist (TMG). Family Historian 6 is the latest version of the powerful, award-winning genealogy program with comprehensive features designed to meet the needs of the beginner and expert alike. It is designed and written by Calico Pie, a UK software house based in London, founded by Simon Orde in 1995. It has features ideally suited to those researching in the UK. The program has been given a complete refresh, with a great new look and numerous usability improvements. [More detail]

Getting Started with Family Historian 6 - $13.00
This guide introduces new users to the main features of the program and shows them how to get started, recording and charting their family history - names, dates, places, images and all the other details they have gathered. Softcover, A5, 40 pages. Rosemary Kopittke, Unlock the Past Series 2016 [More detail]


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© Society of Australian Genealogists 2017 - all rights reserved
Any feedback or enquiries regarding this newsletter should be directed to the editor: Lisa Watson. Items for inclusion are also welcome.