Society of Australian Genealogists


May 2016

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 

  • Tell us about the ancestor you most admire!
  • Congress 2018 has been launched
  • Lost in 2016 - our virtual weekend is coming up


  • What's on in June


  • Roots Ireland



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

  • NEW - Trove: Discover Genealogy Treasure in the National Library of Australia
  • Tracing Your Galway Ancestors
  • Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet
  • Writing Your Family History
  • The Kerry Girls


  • Subscribe or alter your subscription to these newsletters

Tell us about the ancestor you most admire!

This is your last chance to enter the 2016 Croker Prize for Biography by writing an 800-1000 word piece titled ‘The ancestor I most admire is…’ Entries close at midnight on 31 May, so you’ll have to be quick. But with prize money of $1000 up for grabs, it could be a very fruitful night’s work! See here for more details.

Congress 2018 has been launched

In 2018 the SAG will be hosting the 15th Australasian Congress on Genealogy & Heraldry, and we’ve just announced the first details of this exciting event. It will take place from Friday 9 – Monday 12 March 2018 at the new International Convention Centre, Sydney (Darling Harbour). You can see our special launch video on our Congress YouTube channel here and register your interest in getting more details as they come to hand.

And we’re about to open our Call for Speakers too – so if you’re interested in presenting at Congress don’t miss the opportunity to lodge your proposal by 31 October!

Lost in 2016 - our virtual weekend is coming up

If you haven’t yet booked your place in our two-day virtual Lost in England and Scotland weekend you should do so now. This year we’ve secured two overseas presenters, Chris Paton and Dr Janet Few, in addition to some great Australian-based speakers. Topics to be covered include Scottish BDMs and parish registers, tracing the poor in Scotland, using UK parish registers, census records and understanding death records. For $80 members can listen live to all or any of the eight sessions, and receive the recordings and handouts for each as well – ideal for those who’d prefer to listen later or who have other commitments that weekend. As with all our webinars there is a limit to the number of places we can offer, so make sure you view the full program here and get your booking in.


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.

  • Saturday 4 June (10.30am - 12.30pm) - DNA Research Group - Third party autosomal tools
    This month’s meeting will look at three third party tools that may help you to analyse your autosomal results: GEDmatch, DNA Gedcom and Genome Mate Pro. The session will provide a general overview of these tools. Bookings essential. $10 ($15 non-members).
  • Saturday 4 June (1.30pm - 3.00pm) - DNA Advanced Users Meeting - BOOKED OUT!
  • Wednesday 8 June (11.00pm - 12.00pm) - Webinar - Excel-lent Uses for Excel in Family History
    Excel is not just for calculations. It can store, sort and filter data. Learn how to use Excel to organise your family history data, keep your research on track and solve research problems.Presenter: Danielle Lautrec Bookings essential & SAG members only: $12.
  • Thursday 9 June (10.30am - 12.30pm) - Writing Discussion Group - M & Ms
    Mystery, Mistake, Mayhem, Money, Murder? Choose one of these themes, or another that starts with “M”, which resonates with an episode in your family history and will be of interest to the group. Write it up, edit it down to 3 minutes, then read it to us this morning. Group convenor: Sue Stenning. Bookings essential. $10 ($15 non-members).
  • Friday 10 June (10.00am - 1.00pm) - Hands On @379 - County Gloucestershire
    Join us for this Hands On computers session highlighting selected online sources and other material available for Gloucestershire, and where it can be found in the SAG Library. Includes an hour to consult featured records. Limit 14. Presenter: Philippa Garnsey & Joan Healy. Bookings Essential. $35 ($50 non-members).
  • Saturday 18 June - Saturday 19 June - Lost In - England and Scotland
    This Lost In will provide a variety of speakers and topics to help you delve deeper into your English and Scottish past. All registrants will be provided with links to the recordings, so you can watch the webinars live or at your convenience. Bookings essential. $80 ($115 non-members).
  • Thursday 23 June (10.30am - 12.30pm) - Probate records in NSW
    Probate records can contain a wealth of family history information, from an original will, codicils and letters of administration to birth death and marriage certificates. The session will include information on how to research probate records and some examples from the NSW State archives collection. Presenter: NSW State Records. Bookings essential. $22 ($35 non-members).
  • Thursday 23 June (1.30pm - 3.30pm) - Hands On @120 - Tradies: Bricklayers, builders & stonemasons
    Most of us are not related to famous politicians, wealthy landowners or explorers. Our families built the towns and cities where they all lived. Using artefacts, tools, SAG photos and other records, Ralph and Danielle will give you a ‘hands on’ insight into the lives of your Australian tradie ancestors and you how to research them. Presenter: Ralph Hawkins & Danielle Lautrec. Bookings Essential. $22 ($35 non-members).
  • Saturday 25 June (10.30am - 12.30pm) - Legacy Software User Group
    Discover ways to maximise the benefits of this family history software program. Learn from others, share tips and ask questions. Presenter: Bev Hyssett. Bookings essential. $10 ($15 non-members).
  • Saturday 25 June (1.30pm - 3.30pm) - Restoring Photos with Photoshop Elements (rescheduled)
    Note: This lecture has been rescheduled from April. Places have been reserved for people who were booked for the April session. Contact us to transfer your registration. New bookings are also welcome.

    Learn how to use Photoshop Elements to enhance your digital photos, remove blemishes, repair tears and much more. Presenter: Melissa Hulbert. Bookings essential. $22 ($35 non-members).

Roots Ireland

Have you ever wanted to try out an online subscription based website but not wanted to sign up for a lengthy subscription? Roots Ireland are now giving interested researchers the opportunity to purchase a 1 day (24 hour) subscription at a cost of 8 pounds (10 euro). If you like the site, the amount paid will be deducted from the purchase of a 1, 6 or 12 month subscription if you upgrade within 30 days. Roots Ireland is a website of the Irish Family History Foundation containing more than 20 million Irish records from 34 counties.


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 - Trove: Discover Genealogy Treasure in the National Library of Australia - $13.00

This guide lists and explains the various features so that family historians and genealogists can make maximum use of this fantastic free resource. Follow the tips and you will soon become a Trove fan. Softcover, A5, 44 pages, Second Edition. Shauna Hicks, Unlock the Past Series, 2016. [More detail]

Tracing Your Galway Ancestors - $32.00

Genealogical records are diverse, varying from sparse in the Western areas to extensive for some of the inhabitants of Galway city. This book sets out the records available to the family history researcher, where they can be obtained and how to use each to best effect. Softcover, A5, 160 pages. Peadar O'Dowd, FlyLeaf Press, 2010. [More detail]

Tracing Your Irish Family History on the Internet - $33.00

As well as exploring the various categories of records that the family historian can turn to, Chris Paton illustrates their use with fascinating case studies. He fully explores the online records available from both the north and the south from the earliest times to the present day. Many overseas collections are also included, and he looks at social networking in an Irish context where many exciting projects are currently underway. Softcover, A5, 157 pages. Chris Paton, Pen & Sword, 2013 . [More detail]

Writing Your Family History - $35.00

Gill Blanchard's book provides examples to help readers find their own writing style, deal with family stories, missing pieces of information and anomalies. It also offers advice on key aspects of composition, such as adding local and social history context and using secondary material. The focus throughout is on how to develop a story from beginning to end.

Exercises are a key feature of the text. There is guidance on the various formats a family history can take and how to choose the appropriate one, with examples of format and layout. Production and publishing are also covered - books, booklets, newsletters, websites, blogs and ebooks. Softcover, 23cm, 152 pages. Gill Blanchard, Pen & Sword, South Yorkshire, 2014 . [More detail]

The Kerry Girls - $35.00

The true story of the Kerry girls who were shipped to Australia from the four Kerry Workhouses of Dingle/Kenmare/Killarney and Listowel in 1849/1850, as part of the Earl Grey Scheme. Softcover book, 23cm, indexed, 192 pages. Kay Moloney Caball, The History Press Ireland, 2014. [More detail]


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© Society of Australian Genealogists 2016 - all rights reserved
Any feedback or enquiries regarding this newsletter should be directed to the editor: Lisa Watson. Items for inclusion are also welcome.