4th Unlock the Past Cruise: Day Six, 9 February 2014

4th Unlock the Past Cruise: Day Six, 9 February 2014

Continuing my report of the 4th Unlock the Past Cruise, and Sunday the 9th of February was day six of the cruise. This was another sea day, so there was a heap of talks scheduled. Looking at my notebook, I see that I highlighted nine talks to go to, but I actually only ended up going to four. One thing about sea days, and getting up ealyish is seeing the beautiful sunrises, the like one at the top of this post. That was taken from my cabin before heading up for breakfast.

Anyway the day started early enough with three sessions going parallel by 9.00am. Ten Top tips for tracing your hard-to-find ancestors by Mike Murray, Scrapbooking workshop with Maggie Clarke, or Convicts: from trial to freedom with Kerry Farmer … honestly that was a tough choice, but the convicts won out for me. Afterall, having 18 convicts in my family so far, I could do with more learning about the records. So that’s what I did.

Kerry Farmer's talk on ConvictsConvicts: From Trial to Freedom – Kerry Farmer
Kerry mentioned so many records that I didn’t get to write them all down (I know they’ll be in her notes, but I do like to write stuff, as it helps me remember it better), but there are SOOOOOOOO many various records relating to convicts that it’s surreal.

She mentioned about the different crimes that were tried in different courts. You were given to death penalty and were tried in the Assizes court for things like murder, sacrilege, stolen property of over £2, shop lifting and even letter stealing. These records are held at The National Archives. However for lesser crimes, they were tried in the local courts and are usually held at the local country record office, though use the A2A site to search for them.

She also highlighted The National Archives podcasts, in particular the three below, all of which are on my “must-listen-to” list:
From crime to punishment: criminal records of our ancestors from the 18th and 19th centuries
Prison hulks
Transportation to Australia

My second page of notes from this talk mentions a combination of the type of convict records available and where to find them. I’ve written them here exactly as they are in my notebook, so I hope they make some sense to you:
– Scotland convicts => High Court of Justiciary (NAS)
– Ireland convicts => Australian Transportation Database
– Newspapers
– Old Bailey
– Newgate Prison Reigster (TNA)
– Prison Hulk Records (on Ancestry.co.uk)
– Petition Letters (are at TNA)
– Discovery Catalogue (TNA)
– Recommendation for Pardon (TNA)
–  Transportation Records for NSW & Tas (State Library Qld)
– Surgeons Journals (TNA & now on Ancestry.co.uk)
– Convict Indents Tasmania (Tas Archives)
– Convict Appropriation Records (Tas Archives)
– Convict Conduct Records (Tas Archives)
– Guide to PRO Tasmania is a free guide
– Sentenced Beyond the Seas lists over 130,000 convicts (NSW State Records)
– Ancestry.com.au has LOTS of convict records
– Colonial Secretary’s Papers
– Pardons (conditional and absolute)
– Victoria (and NSW) Government Gazettes (State Library of Victoria)
– Police Gazettes
– findmypast => choose country => choose record set
– Parramatta Female Factory
– Fremantle Prison site

My Favourite Free Websites for Australian Researchers – Jill Ball
Who doesn’t love Australian research, let alone it being free. And as you’d expect this was reasonably well attended. With slides of each website Jill mentioned, she firstly covered Australia wide sites, before venturing into state-specific ones. Now I’m not going to list them all for you, partly because I didn’t get them all listed anyway, but also that would make this post WAAAAAY too long. So here’s just a few of the not-so-well known ones:
– Behind the Name (if you’re looking for etymology)
– Claim A Convict (newly relaunched)
– FamilySearch Research Wiki
– Famine Orphan Girl Database
– Gazetteer of Australia Place Name Search
– Fairfax Archive News Store
– Genies Down Under Podcasts
– It’s an Honour
– Mapping Our Anzacs
– Obituaries Australia
– One-Place Studies
– RootsWeb Mailing Lists
– Ryerson Index
– Women on Vision (nuns etc)
– University of Sydney (Alumni)
– Text Queensland
– WorldCat
– GenSoft Reviews

Researching Australians in the Great War 1914-1919 – Neil Smith
My third talk of the day was Neil’s WW1 talk. Now I didn’t make extensive notes on this as he went very fast to cover a lot of information. But did you know that WW1 was the greatest military conflict that Australia has ever been involved in? And that in 1914 there was no Airforce? And that colour patches were introduced in mid-1915? No, nor did I.

Anyway here’s a few more tidbits I wrote down:
– Australian WW1 Navy records could be at the UKs The National Archves (RAN)
– the militia (part-time military) pay records are on microfiche
– look for war gratuity records as they list alias and real name
– the London Gazette lists details of all (Aus included) who received military medals
– the Western Front Association is making 6 million pension record available

—————————————————————–

So as you can see, I learnt heaps from the few talks I went to. And by this time my head was buzzing. Not quite full, but filled enough for the time being. I remember from my previous cruise that I overloaded it, and seriously nothing more would go in. So I had a little bit of an easy afternoon and evening. And below are a few more pics from the day.

by this time my lanyard/name tag was getting blinged up with ribbon stickers and badges

by this time my lanyard/name tag was getting blinged up with ribbon stickers and badges

you know you're in for rough weather when you see all the deck chairs tied up

you know you’re in for rough weather when you see all the deck chairs tied up

Helen and I went to Johnny Rockets, which is right up on Deck 12

Helen and I went to Johnny Rockets, which is right up on Deck 12

Helen at Johnny Rockets waiting for her burger

Helen at Johnny Rockets waiting for her burger

while we were waiting, the music went up, and the staff started dancing

while we were waiting, the music went up, and the staff started dancing

the Cafe Promenade on Deck 4 was a great place to get something quick ... pizza, cake and a drink. Great for the seas days when there was lots of talks to go to.

the Cafe Promenade on Deck 4 was a great place to get something quick … pizza, cake and a drink. Great for the seas days when there was lots of talks to go to.

selfie: Helen Smith and me :-)

selfie: Helen Smith and me 🙂

 

468 ad

2 Responses to “4th Unlock the Past Cruise: Day Six, 9 February 2014”

  1. Sharon says:

    Brings back memories from last year, which I loved. Hoping to go on another one soon!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.