Monday, March 28, 2011

Last day of the Unlock the Past Cruise

Friday was a very full-on day, from a point of view of presentations I attended.  A few highlights only of the day:-

Cora Num gave a talk entitled “How did they get here:  Locating Shipping and Immigration records”.  Key points were that there can be more than one index to any particular record series, and there may be differences between them, so if there is more than one index, make sure to check them all;  hospital admission records may list the ship of arrival;  children over 14 are listed as single males or single females, and not with the family, so make sure you check that section of the passenger lists.

Jeremy Palmer’s talk on English and Welsh Probate Records pointed out that although Ancestry has the National Probate Calendar from 1861 to 1941 (with some gaps), the Society of Australian Genealogists has the microfiche for these calendars from their start in 1858 to 1943, without the gaps.  The other point is that the maps in Phillimore’s Atlas show which parishes were part of “peculiars” for the purpose of proving wills.

I went to a talk on document preservation by Diane Foster, who had been an archivist working in various archives throughout the world.  She started by acknowledging that the ideal materials to facilitate preservation are expensive, and that people will not always be able to make use of them, but said she would talk about the ideal solution, and then an “acceptable” one.

She spoke about the differences between Ground Pulp Paper (the normal type) and Chemical Pulp Paper (much more expensive – this is the “archival” paper which can also be labelled Permanent Paper or Long Life Paper).  Paper labelled “Museum Quality” has a high content of rag, and is even better.  Next point was about shelving.  Ideally it should be metal, but as most of us have (and want) wooden shelving at home, the best way to avoid the wood coming into contact with the valuable book etc was to line the shelf with Tyvek.  A few other points
·         Paper (and books) should be stored on edge, unless it is oversized
·         Even plastic paper clips will damage paper by bending it and making the paper fragile at the position of the bends
·         Don’t use hairdryers to get photos out of old magnetic albums (will damage the photo)
·         Henzo photo albums are good – the best are the ones with slip covers to keep out the light and dust
·         When printing digital photos print matt copies, not glossy, and make sure you use pigment ink, not dye

At lunch I was again “hosting” a table, this time on Oral History, which went well.  One of the people on the table was from Penrith Library, so was interested in capturing community history as well as family history.

At the end of the cruise I will say that I learnt a lot, met lots of new people, and am totally exhausted – it was more like work than a holiday!


  1. Do keep blogging, Jenny. It's great to be able to hear what locals have to say.
    I look foward to reading future posts via my RSS feeds.

  2. Thank you Jenny for your reports - and on board contributions. Yours is the third new (to me) blog I have seen in the last two days. You were another "find" on the cruise, with your varied and interesting topics. I enjoyed the conversation on the upper deck with you, Carol and your husbands when there were no tables left for me at an evening dinner - Alan Phillips

  3. Jenny, I've enjoyed reading your tips from talks that I was not able to attend, and your thoughts about the conference and cruise. My comments (and some photos) are on Genealogy Leftovers.

  4. Hello again Jenny. I have nominated you for the 'One Lovely Blog Award'. Rules for accepting the award are: (1)Accept the award and post it on your blog with the name of the person who granted the award and their blog link. (2)Pass the award on to 15 other blogs that you've newly discovered. (3)Contact those bloggers to let them know they've been chosen for this award. Please visit UK/Australia Genealogy to collect the 'One Lovely Blog Award' badge, which you can use on your blog when you list your 15 nominees.