Monday, October 31, 2011

Certificate of Irish Heritage

I have been reading about the Certificate of Irish Heritage that is available for purchase to anyone with Irish ancestry and can provide their Irish line of descent. On the certificate you can name two Irish ancestors.

Of course, for me and I assume many people the problem is which two of my Irish ancestors would I give pride of place to on the certificate.

I have 16 direct line Irish ancestors who arrived in Australia between 1822 and 1883. I have 10 on my mother's side and 6 on my fathers. I suppose I would have to choose one from each side. I have 11 Catholics, 1 Church of Ireland and 3 Presbyterians. There were 8 men and 8 women. There were 3 female children and 1 male child. There were 3 convicts. There was one doctor. Two share my maiden name of Moore.

Who would you choose?

My mother's side

1. Patrick Flynn was my first Irish ancestor to arrive in Australia. Patrick was a whiteboy from Cork and was sentenced to life. He arrived in 1822.

2 and 3. Patrick's wife Hanora and their daughter Ann came to Australia in 1826. Hanora took care of their children in Ireland. Upon arrival she successfully applied to have Patrick assigned to her.

4. Thomas Moylan who arrived in 1824 from Cork married Ann Flynn. He took up arms in Ireland and was sentenced to life. He died when their 4 sons were quite young and Ann was left to bring them up alone. She had to admit two of her sons to the Orphan School.

5. James Agnew from Castledawson, Londonderry, was sentenced to life in 1836 after being an accessory before the fact of murder. The trial papers and references tend to say he was a good man and the murdered man was a menace to the community.

6. Ellen Agnew his wife remained in Ireland for several years before coming to Australia with their 4 children in 1847.

7. Matilda Agnew was born after her father was imprisoned and so did not meet him until she came to Australia when she was 11 years old.

8 Dr William Lee Dawson from Swords, Co Dublin was the first doctor at Franklin in Tasmania. He arrived in 1854.

9 John Charles Ryan from Waterford is a bit of a mystery. His arrival date is unknown.

10 Mary O'Halloran (Halloran)'s date of arrival is unknown but it is assumed she came to Brisbane possibly with her brother and sister.

My father's side

11 and 12. John Moore and his wife Margaret Henry came to Australia from Antrim in 1883 after having lived in Greenock, Scotland.

13 Knox was the son of John and Margaret. He was about 10 when he arrived in Brisbane.

14, 15 and 16 John McInerney and his wife Mary Maley? and their daughter Mary Ellen arrived in Melbourne in 1854. John died 14 years later in a timber accident that left Mary with 9 small children to raise.

I really want a certificate but I don't know who to honour.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Geneameme - Beyond the Internet


Pauline at Family history across the seas has come up with another Geneameme – Beyond the Internet.

My responses are below.

Things you have already done or found: bold face type
Things you would like to do or find: italicize (colour optional)
Things you haven’t done or found and don’t care to: plain type
You are encouraged to add extra comments in brackets after each item


1.             Looked at microfiche for BDM indexes which go beyond the online search dates. (I can remember 27 years ago being in Brisbane visiting my mother and going to the State Library and sitting, standing and keeling at indexes for hours over a three week period  - very pregnant at the time and no access to indexes where I lived)
2.             Talked to elderly relatives about your family history.
3.             Obtained old family photos from relatives.
4.             Have at least one certificate (birth/death/marr) for each great-grandparent.
5.             Have at least one certificate (birth/death/marr) for each great-great-grandparent. (Missing Malcolm McColm – have the index number but haven’t purchased – will have to rectify.)
6.             Seen/held a baptism or marriage document in a church, church archive or microfilm.
7.             Seen your ancestor’s name in some other form of church record eg kirk session, communion rolls.
8.             Used any microfilm from an LDS family history centre for your research.
9.             Researched using a microfilm other than a parish register
10.         Used cemetery burial records to learn more about your relative’s burial.
11.         Used funeral director’s registers to learn more about your relative’s burial (My mother once read the details upside down while the clerk refused to give her an address.)
12.         Visited all your great-grandparents’ grave sites. (They are all over the place – 2 in Wallangarra (Qld), 2 in Tenterfield (NSW), 1 in Whittlesea (Vic), 1 Casino (NSW) and 2 in Cooma (NSW). Haven’t been to Whittlesea.
13.         Visited all your great-great-grandparents’ grave sites. Even further afield this time. 3 in Wallangarra (Qld - 1 unmarked)), 1 in Warwick (Qld), 1 in Drake (NSW), 1 in Tenterfield (NSW - unmarked), 2 in Sandgate (NSW – both unmarked), 1 in Franklin (Tas), 1 in St Kilda (Vic – unmarked), 2 in Cooma (NSW) 2 in Rookwood (NSW) and 2 in Karrakarra, Perth, (W.A.)                                                                  I haven’t been to Warwick which is not that far away. I have visited the spot at St Kilda and I have to confess that I have only driven past Sandgate Cemetery in Newcastle (my children would hold their breath – a long hold as we used to drive along two sides). I made sure I went to Karrakatta when in Perth a couple of years ago and I’ve made the trip to Cooma and Franklin.
14.         Recorded the details on your ancestors’ gravestones and photographed them.
15.         Obtained a great-grandparent’s will/probate documents.
16.         Obtained a great-great grandparent’s will/probate documents
17.         Found a death certificate among will documents. (At QLD State Archives)
18.         Followed up in the official records, something found on the internet.
19.         Obtained a copy of your immigrant ancestors’ original shipping records.
20.         Found an immigration nomination record for your immigrant ancestor
21.         Found old images of your ancestor’s place of origin (online or other). – Visited the ruins in Ireland.
22.         Read all/part of a local history for your ancestor’s place of residence.
23.         Read all/part of a local history for your ancestor’s place of origin.
24.         Read your ancestor’s school admission records.
25.         Researched the school history for your grandparents.
26.         Read a court case involving an ancestor (online newspapers don’t count for this). (Irish trial papers – at least 50 A3 sheets – simply brilliant!)
27.         Read about an ancestor’s divorce case in the archives. (There are some at QLD State Archives but I don’t really want to read them)
28.         Have seen an ancestor’s war medals. (Both my husband’s and my direct lines have missed all wars.)
29.         Have an ancestor’s military record (not a digitised copy eg WWII).
30.         Read a war diary or equivalent for an ancestor’s battle. (Great uncle)
31.         Seen an ancestor’s/relative’s war grave.
32.         Read all/part of the history of an ancestor’s military unit (battalion/ship etc). G-for-George told me exactly what happened the night relative Allan Seabrook Mitchell died.
33.         Seen your ancestor’s name on an original land map. (Grandfather near Old Bonalbo)
34.         Found land selection documents for your immigrant ancestor/s.
35.         Found other land documents for your ancestor (home/abroad) (Serendipitously, the preceding document also belonged to a family member.)
36.         Located land maps or equivalent for your ancestor’s place of origin.
37.         Used contemporaneous gazetteers or directories to learn about your ancestors’ places.
38.         Found your ancestor’s name in a Post Office directory of the time.
39.         Used local government sewerage maps (yes, seriously!) for an ancestor’s street. (No, but they would show where my great uncle died, as he drowned as a child playing a game jumping over the trenches at Callan Park as the sewerage was being put on.)
40.         Read an inquest report for an ancestor/relative (online/archives). (Several including a tree felling accident and a drowning – both in Victoria)
41.         Read an ancestor’s/relative’s hospital admission.
42.         Researched a company file if your family owned a business.
43.         Looked up any of your ancestor’s local government rate books or valuation records. (Tasmanian government gazettes.)
44.         Researched occupation records for your ancestor/s (railway, police, teacher etc).
45.         Researched an ancestor’s adoption.
46.         Researched an ancestor’s insolvency. Andrew Silas Waters - Armidale
47.         Found a convict ancestor’s passport or certificate of freedom.
48.         Found a convict ancestor’s shipping record.
49.         Found an ancestor’s gaol admission register.
50.         Found a licencing record for an ancestor (brands, publican, etc).
51.         Found an ancestor’s mining lease/licence.
52.         Found an ancestor’s name on a petition to government.
53.         Read your ancestor’s citizenship document. Husband’s side.
54.         Read about your ancestor in an undigitised regional newspaper. (Spent hours in Tenterfield trawling through these and then suggested to UNE that they should be digitized. I drove them from Tenterfield to Armidale in my boot)
55.         Visited a local history library/museum relevant to your family.
56.         Looked up your ancestor’s name in the Old Age Pension records.
57.          (Researched your ancestor or relative in Benevolent Asylum/Workhouse records. There are a couple in England to be investigated)
58.         Researched an ancestor’s/relative’s mental health records.
59.         Looked for your family in a genealogical publication of any sort (but not online remember).
60.         Contributed family information to a genealogical publication. (Not for many years)

          I have been rather devious in the past so have been able to tick off many of the above. I once organised a trip to Canberra and Cooma with my family so I could traipse the Cooma Cemetery. When we arrived in Canberra I gave my husband instructions to take the kids to Questacon while I would be almost next door at the National Library. My daughter once asked someone if they would like to see our holiday photos. Of course, they were of numerous headstones from the cemeteries we passed on our way.

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - Where do You Fit?

This weeks challenge from Randy at Genea-Musings.


It's Saturday Night again -- and time for more Genealogy Fun!!!  

Your mission, should you decide to accept it, is to:

1)  Use the Population Counter on the BBC News website to determine your place in the current world population, and your place in all of history (of course, these are estimates...see the website for how they calculated this).  Enter your birth date into the fields and click on "Go."

2)  Tell us about your results in your own blog post, as a Comment on this blog post, or as a status line in Facebook or a Stream post on Google Plus.  For extra credit, show us the image from the website with your information on it.


I entered my date and discovered this.


Currently Australia's estimated population is 22 398 014. Every hour there are 33 births, 16 deaths and 26 immigrants arrive. An annual growth of 1.7%.

The site also told me that I would believing longer but that working people like me will be supporting increasing numbers of older people. Does this mean I'll be working longer? In that case, I may have less time to devote to my passion. There is not a minute to waste!

What have I been doing in October?

Today is the second last day of October and I see that I have only blogged twice. So what have I done that has been keeping me away from blogging? Paid work, work, work! I have not had time to look at my TNG website which I had hoped to have live by now. (Perhaps a job for the Christmas break!)

However, I have been able to grab some time to scan documents - something that I really needed to do. I kept putting it off because I wasn't happy with my electronic filing system. Originally I had my files prefixed with the ID number from Reunion for each individual. However, earlier this year I decided to combine some of my Reunion files. I had one family file for my husband but three for my side. I have now combined my three and have spent many hours merging the identical people. I'm now happy with this part of my research. Of course, after merging the files the ID numbers changed so my filing system was useless.

I asked Geniaus earlier in the year to describe her filing system. I also purchased an ebook titled Sassy Jane's Guide to Organizing your Genealogical Research Using Archival Principles by Nancy Loe. After reading the rational for her method I have decided to go with that for my documents. I'm still undecided and thinking about photos.

For today I'll talk only about the specific sources of information. The image below shows how I file this data. I have two identical folders for myself and my husband.






If I have several items that pertain to a specific family they have a surname folder in the above folders. Each individual document is saved by SURNAMEChristianName with appropriate ending including an abbreviation for the newspaper (if this is the source) and the date. This does mean that all the documents about an individual can be spread over several folders. However, using Spotlight on my Mac means I can find them all very quickly and in Lion get a preview of the document without opening it. This means I can see what birth certificates I have very quickly. I can see what obituaries I need to find.

Now that I am satisfied with my system, I have begun to scan. I am nowhere near complete, but I have made significant progress and have refound many items of interest which I will share on this blog. You know, the items that have been placed in a box, ready to file!

Can anyone see anything I have overlooked in my system. Or is anything not readily obvious? While writing this I realise I need to have an authority control document for consistency particularly for my newspaper abbreviations which are clear to me but not to others.

Now off to breakfast to celebrate my husband's birthday. He's wearing his new R.M. Williams boots!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

The Ancestor's Geneameme - Part 2

I'll complete the Geneameme for my husband's side of the family.

The list should be annotated in the following manner:
Things you have already done or found: bold face type
Things you would like to do or find: italicize (colour optional)
Things you haven’t done or found and don’t care to: plain type

You are encouraged to add extra comments in brackets after each item 



Which of these apply to you?



  1. Can name my 16 great-great-grandparents - (Thomas Brennan, Margaret Tobin, James Ryan, Catherine Cleary. Alfred Kerr, May Ann Spatch, Thomas Squires, Mary Ann Lydamore, Christoph Scheef, Margaretha Munk, Georg Glock, Barbara Waegerle, Andrew Waters, Margaret Doherty, Elis Dawson and Mary Richardson)
  2. Can name over 50 direct ancestors - 83 
  3. Have photographs or portraits of my 8 great-grandparents - Not sure if we have one of Alexander Kerr and his wife Edith Squires
  4. Have an ancestor who was married more than three times
  5. Have an ancestor who was a bigamist
  6. Met all four of my grandparents (Albert Scheef died many years before my husband was born)
  7. Met one or more of my great-grandparents (Alexander Kerr was alive when my husband was born but unfortunately they never met)
  8. Named a child after an ancestor (Our eldest son shares his name with his great grandfather)
  9. Bear an ancestor's given name/s 
  10. Have an ancestor from Great Britain or Ireland - both
  11. Have an ancestor from Asia
  12. Have an ancestor from Continental Europe - Germany
  13. Have an ancestor from Africa - Ultimately we all have ancestors from Africa
  14. Have an ancestor who was an agricultural labourer - several
  15. Have an ancestor who had large land holdings - several - Armidale and Uralla area
  16. Have an ancestor who was a holy man - minister, priest, rabbi
  17. Have an ancestor who was a midwife
  18. Have an ancestor who was an author
  19. Have an ancestor with the surname Smith, Murphy or Jones (egg grandparents to reach a Smith)
  20. Have an ancestor with the surname Wong, Kim, Suzuki or Ng
  21. Have an ancestor with a surname beginning with X
  22.  Have an ancestor with a forename beginnining with Z
  23. Have an ancestor born on 25th December
  24. Have an ancestor born on New Year's Day
  25. Have blue blood in your family lines
  26. Have a parent who was born in a country different from my country of birth
  27. Have a grandparent who was born in a country different from my country of birth
  28. Can trace a direct family line back to the eighteenth century
  29. Can trace a direct family line back to the seventeenth century or earlier
  30.  Have seen copies of the signatures of some of my great-grandparents
  31. Have ancestors who signed their marriage certificate with an X - will need to check this one out
  32. Have a grandparent or earlier ancestor who went to university
  33.  Have an ancestor who was convicted of a criminal offence - (Andrew Waters - forgery and William Spatch - stealing copper)
  34. Have an ancestor who was a victim of crime - Georg Glock (gg grandfather) - http://tiny.cc/fjr6a There are also 2 murder victims in the family (but not direct lines)
  35. Have shared an ancestor's story online or in a magazine (Tell us where) (Various blog posts)
  36. Have published a family history online or in print (Details please)
  37. Have visited an ancestor's home from the 19th or earlier centuries - Do the foundations count?
  38. Still have an ancestor's home from the 19th or earlier centuries in the family
  39.  Have a  family bible from the 19th Century
  40. Have a pre-19th century family bible


The Ancestor's Geneameme

My friend Geniaus has made another meme for us to complete.

The list should be annotated in the following manner:
Things you have already done or found: bold face type
Things you would like to do or find: italicize (colour optional)
Things you haven’t done or found and don’t care to: plain type

You are encouraged to add extra comments in brackets after each item 

Which of these apply to you?

  1. Can name my 16 great-great-grandparents (John Moore, Margaret Henry, Malcolm McColm, Jane Fleming, Thomas Merchant, Sarah Hooton, William Allsop, Mary McInerney, William Dawson, Emma Seabrook, John Lylan, Matilda Agnew,, John Ryan, Mary O'Halloran, Peter Ogden and Elizabeth Harrison)
  2. Can name over 50 direct ancestors - 125 - However, some of them are female christian names
  3. Have photographs or portraits of my 8 great-grandparents - Only have 7, Michael Patrick Ryan is missing.
  4. Have an ancestor who was married three times
  5. Have an ancestor who was a bigamist.Not a direct ancestor. (Family stories suggest that John Cottle, the husband of Maud Ford was a bigamist and this was why she committed suicide 6 weeks after she married. I haven't actually checked out the accuracy of this story.) The Tenterfield Star 30 January 1906, p. 6. Infinitely sadder than the above, are the circumstances connected with another death, which occurred in our very midst, on Anniversary Day. Mrs John Cottle, a young and apparently happy bride of not quite two months, died by her own hands for no assignable reason whatsoever. Sincere sympathy is felt for her husband, parents and numerous relations. As inquest proved that poison had been taken. The body was followed by friends and interred. Mr W A E Parrott officiated at the graveside, reading the service authorised by the Archbishop of Canterbury for use upon such occasions.
  6. Met all four of my grandparents - (James Moore, Esme Moore, Donovan Dawson and Elsie Dawson)
  7. Met one or more of my great-grandparents (Rose Merchant (Allsop))
  8. Named a child after an ancestor (I'd be in trouble if I mentioned it here.)
  9. Bear an ancestor's given names.
  10. Have an ancestor from Great Britain or Ireland (All my direct lines)
  11. Have an ancestor from Asia
  12. Have an ancestor from Continental Europe.
  13. Have an ancestor from Africa
  14. Have an ancestor who was an agricultural labourer - several
  15. Have an ancestor who had large land holdings (Robert Cumin Dawson in Ireland)
  16. Have an ancestor who was a holy man, minister, priest, rabbi (my 5g grandfather Rev Michael Lee - Ireland)
  17. Have an ancestor who was a midwife
  18. Have an ancestor who was an author
  19. Have an ancestor with the surname Smith, Murphy or Jones - (5 greats in a direct line to get to a Smith)
  20. Have an ancestor with the surname Wong, Kim, Suzuki or Ng
  21. Have an ancestor with a surname beginning with W
  22. Have an ancestor with a forename beginning with Z
  23. Have an ancestor born on 25th December
  24. Have an ancestor born on New Year's Day
  25. Have blue blood in your family lines
  26. Have a parent who was born in a different county from my county of birth
  27. Have a grandparent who was born in a different county from my county of birth
  28. Can trace a direct family line back to the eighteenth century
  29. Can trace a direct family line back to the seventeenth century or earlier
  30. Has seen copies of the signatures of some of my great-grandparents
  31. Have ancestors who signed their marriage certificate with an X
  32. Have a grandparent or earlier ancestor who went to university - 5 great grandfather Rev Michael Lee graduated from Trinity College Dublin with a BA in 1726. 
  33. Have an ancestor who was convicted of a criminal offence - Patrick Flynn, Thomas Moylan and James Agnew (All Irish)
  34. Have an ancestor who was a victim of crime.
  35. Have shared an ancestor's story online or in a magazine  Other than my blog and not strictly an ancestor but the nephew of my gg grandmother) http://tiny.cc/grqw3
  36. Have published a family history online or in print -  http://tiny.cc/z5j8i and http://tiny.cc/h1roh
  37. Have visited an ancestor's home from the 19th or earlier centuries (In Ireland and Sydney)
  38. Still have an ancestor's home from the 19th or earlier centuries (In Ireland)
  39. Have a family bible from the 19th century (My aunt has one.)
  40. Have a pre-19th century family bible.