Day One WDYTYA? Live

Couldn’t believe how busy the place was today! I arrived just before opening time of 10am and the queue of ticket holders outside seem to go on forever. It was at this point I was very glad I had splashed out and got a fast track platinum ticket, which enabled me to bypass the queues and go straight inside.

I managed to grab some extra workshop tickets upstairs,and then I headed straight for the photo-dating area, where my luck was in! Maureen Taylor dated four photos of mine before there was anyone else waiting in line (top tip: head for the photo dating area first).

The first talk I went to was Larry Lamb sharing his experiences of WDYTYA. His episode was voted as the most moving of the last series, and it was lovely to get his feedback on the whole process.

After that session, I grabbed something to eat and prepared my information for the Ask the Expert session I had coming up next. I spoke to a very helpful man about my military ancestors and found out where to look for further information. A visit to TNA at Kew seems to be in order!

I then had four talks/workshops in a row – all of them illuminating. Nick Barratt (along with Colin McFarlane) spoke about an amazing project they’re working on with school children, integrating family history with the national curriculum. (Can’t check website address right now, but will add as soon as I can!) Jayne Shrimpton showed us family snapshots from the 1880s to the 1940s, giving us ideas on how how to date them and also proving what value they have to our research.

Then it was palaeography with Dominic Johnson – I found this a brilliant presentation, despite numerous technical glitches. She has a real passion for her subject, and I can’t wait to get stuck into this topic for my IHGS assignments. (Famous last words..?)

Last session of the day for me was Discover Scottish Church Records with Chris Paton. Essentially a Quick History of the (surprisingly many) churches in Scotland, with helpful hints on where to research, all delivered with great humour. Lovely way to end the day!

(WordPress on iPhone won’t let me upload photos at the mo, so they’ll have to keep for another day.)

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WDYTYA? Live ~ one more sleep to go!

Who Do You Think You Are? Live, the biggest family history event in the English-speaking world, begins tomorrow!

Apparently the District Line between Earl’s Court and Kensington Olympia is on a restricted service on Friday, so if you’re going along tomorrow, check the Transport for London website, for an alternative route. The walk doesn’t look too bad from Earl’s Court, though – about 15 minutes.  Service seems to be running normally during the weekend.

Many of the exhibitors are running competitions and promotions.  One that caught my eye on Twitter was FindMyPast – visit their stand 707 and quote “the transcription has landed” for a free 1911 census polo shirt. First come, first served!

The Society of Genealogists‘ Else Churchill has organised some rosettes for genealogy bloggers and tweeters to wear, so do go up and ask her about this. She’ll be around the SOG workshop areas, mostly likely, or catch her at one of her talks.  If you’re not a blogger or tweeter, look out for the rosettes!  (I’ve jimmied up some business cards to hand out.)

The Institute of Heraldic and Genealogical Studies are at stand 69/70, with a great discount on their Correspondence Course if you enrol this weekend.  Check out all their other courses too, and have a chat to the lovely staff.

I’m not sure what I’m more excited about – the actual exhibition, the workshops, meeting up with some fellow IHGS students, or having a weekend away from the kids!

Hopefully I’ll get a chance (and an internet connection) to post tomorrow night.

 

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Arohanui, Christchurch

On February 22nd 2011 at 12.51pm (NZDT), an earthquake of 6.3 magnitude hit Christchurch, New Zealand, causing the deaths of 185 people.

These postcards are from the album of my grandmother, Agnes Majella (Burke) Gaffaney, who was born, raised and buried in Christchurch.

Roman Catholic Cathedral, Christchurch, NZ 7582

Roman Catholic Cathedral, Christchurch, NZ 7582

Cathedral Square, Christchurch, NZ 7869

Cathedral Square, Christchurch, NZ 7869

Worcester Street, from Cathedral Square, Christchurch, 7875

Worcester Street, from Cathedral Square, Christchurch, 7875

Aerial View, Christchurch, NZ 7125 "National Publicity Studios Photo"

Aerial View, Christchurch, NZ 7125 "National Publicity Studios Photo"

 

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James & Ann Brosnan ~ Tombstone Tuesday

James and Ann (Collins) Brosnan are my 3 x great grandparents. I’m not sure why they used that particular spelling of their surname here – they seemed to have used a couple of spellings interchangeably, but ‘Brosnan’ is now etched on their gravestone. The rest of the family all appear to have consistently used ‘Brosnahan’.

Gravestone, James & Ann Brosnan, also Annie Brosnan, Temuka Cemetery, South Canterbury

Gravestone, James & Ann Brosnan, also Annie Brosnan, Temuka Cemetery, South Canterbury

 

In Loving Memory
of
JAMES BROSNAN
who died 23rd Sept 1890
Aged 76 Years

R. I. P.

also ANN
wife of the above
died May 15th 1902
Aged 85 Years

also their daughter
ANNIE
died Dec 28 1944
Aged 89

R. I. P.

Tombstone Tuesday is an ongoing series at GeneaBloggers.

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Mill Road, Waimate

Margaret, Dominic and Peter Gaffaney, Mill Road, Waimate

Margaret, Dominic and Peter Gaffaney, Mill Road, Waimate

My great grandparents Peter Dominic and Margaret (O’Rourke) Gaffaney, along with their son Michael Dominic, moved to Waimate in 1919, where they lived at this house they named “Clonmel”  in Mill Road.

Gaffaney home, Mill Road, Waimate

Gaffaney home, Mill Road, Waimate

I didn’t know which number in Mill Road the house was, and couldn’t find it using Google Maps, so when my parents and I visited Waimate last month, it was a matter of cruising (very slowly) up and down the road.

Mill Road house, Waimate ~ January 2012

Mill Road house, Waimate ~ January 2012

We found it!  It was difficult to spot initially because of all the trees in front of the house, but the distinctive woodwork over the verandah gave it away.

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St Patrick’s church, Waimate, South Canterbury, NZ

St Patrick's church, Waimate (photo probably taken 1920s)

St Patrick's church, Waimate (photo probably taken 1920s)

St Patrick's church, Waimate ~ January 2012

St Patrick's church, Waimate ~ January 2012

St Patrick’s church in Waimate was opened on October 24th, 1909, replacing the original church that had been built in 1876 of local heart timber.  It was renovated in 1954. ( The original church was moved to Washdyke in 1934, where it remains today.)1

  1. Waimate District Council, “Waimate Churches“, (http://www.waimatedc.govt.nz/Waimate/Community/waimatechurches.htm : accessed 19 Feb 2012).
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Anything but Filing ~ Sorting Saturday

I had planned to tackle some filing today, but I seemed to have found a myriad of things to do instead!

I’ve just installed a WordPress plugin called Organise Series, so that it’s easier for my readers to follow a series of posts that I write on a particular topic. My Brosnahan posts are ideal candidates for a series, so I went ahead and set it up, but the series links box that is added to each post needs a bit of work, appearance- and placement-wise, so have turned the feature off for now. If you’re interestd in adding this plugin to your blog, check out Moultrie Creek’s article, which is where I got the idea from.

This week I need to spend some time preparing for WDYTYA? Live. I have two ‘Ask the Expert’ sessions, where I get to spend 20 minutes with an expert who will hopefully tell me all the answers what steps to take next in my research. The two areas I want help with are tracking down my Burke ancestors in Mayo, and finding the regiment and movements of a military ancestor. I want to collect together all the information and research I’ve done so far and type up a summary for each question.

I also want to choose a couple of photos to copy and take along to be dated – Jayne Shrimpton will again be attendance, though I found you need to get in early, or be prepared for a long queue! I’m hoping this year there will be an efficient system in place, perhaps even more ‘photo detectives’ available. (Must check out the guide and website to get the details before Friday.)

I’d like to follow up a little more on my Brosnahans, plus tackle some of my neglected IHGS assignments. I’ll get a chance to see my tutor at WDYTYA, so better do some work before I go!

Tomorrow I may do some filing.

Sorting Saturday is an ongoing series at GeneaBloggers.

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WDYTYA? Live ~ one week to go!

This time next week I will be at WDYTYA? Live in London!  I’m attending on Friday and Saturday, and have booked workshops for both days.  I’m hoping I’ll be able to pick up tickets on the day for another workshop or two.

Ancestry have announced they will be streaming some of their presentations live from their Facebook page.  (You’ll need to have a Facebook account.) Details are on their blog. There are three presentations on Friday and three on Saturday that you will be able to view.

Seven more sleeps to go!

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Caught on camera (and in caption) ~ the Brosnahan boys

If you’ve read my post from yesterday, you might have noticed some marks and lines across the photograph – some captions had been written on the photo itself as well as on the cardboard frame surrounding it.  So, here for the delight and edification of all, are John Brosnahan’s boys, circa 1925:

Patrick Brosnahan, Temuka, South Canterbury, 1925

"Pat", Temuka, South Canterbury, 1925

Patrick Brosnahan (1866 – 19541)

Matthew Brosnahan, Temuka, South Canterbury 1925

"Mat", Temuka, South Canterbury 1925

Matthew Brosnahan (1876 – 19462)

Thomas William Brosnahan, Temuka, South Canterbury, 1925

"Tom", Temuka, South Canterbury 1925

Thomas William Brosnahan (1878 – 19543)

  1. Timaru District Council, “TDC Cemetery Database”, database, Timaru District Council (http://www.timaru.govt.nz/cemetery-database2.html : accessed Jan 2012), entry for Patrick Brosnahan, Rosewill (ref 15932, block 6, row 224, plot 360, Temuka, buried 19 Jun 1954).
  2. Timaru District Council, “TDC Cemetery Database”, database, Timaru District Council (http://www.timaru.govt.nz/cemetery-database2.html : accessed Jan 2012), entry for Matthew Brosnahan, Wilkin St, Temuka (ref 14224, block 4, row 233, plot 212, Temuka, buried 08 Oct 1946).
  3. Timaru District Council, “TDC Cemetery Database”, database, Timaru District Council (http://www.timaru.govt.nz/cemetery-database2.html : accessed Jan 2012), entry for Thomas William Brosnahan, Arowhenua, Temuka (ref 15920, block 8, row 215, plot 527, Temuka, buried 06 Apr 1954).
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Golden, or Diamond Anniversary? ~ Wedding Wednesday

On the occasion of John and Hanorah's wedding anniversary, Temuka, South Canterbury

On the occasion of John and Hanorah's wedding anniversary, Temuka, South Canterbury, NZ

The caption on the frame containing this photo says the occasion for the gathering was John Brosnahan and Hanorah O’Driscoll’s Golden Wedding anniversary.  John and Hanorah were married on March 31st, 1865 in Christchurch, NZ.1  This would date the photograph to 1915.  But the clothes don’t seem to match the period – just looking at the women’s hats, for instance, and checking my (new!) book by dress historian Jayne Shrimpton, they appear to be from the mid 1920s.  So, my guess is the occasion is their 60th (or Diamond) wedding anniversary, which would have been in 1925.  What do you readers think??

John and Hanorah Brosnahan (both seated)

John and Hanorah Brosnahan (both seated)

Taking a closer look at the photo, John is seated with his walking stick across him, and wife Hanorah is the woman seated on the right.  Behind John, with her hand on his chair, is his sister (my great great grandmother) Margaret.  On Margaret’s right is their sister Annie (“the Queen”).

The photograph was taken outside the Brosnahans’ house in Wilkin Street, which still stands today, though many of the external character features seem to have been removed.

Brosnahan home, Wilkin Street, Temuka, South Canterbury, NZ

Former Brosnahan home, Wilkin Street, Temuka, South Canterbury, NZ (Google map image)

Wedding Wednesday is an ongoing series at GeneaBloggers.

  1. New Zealand, marriage certificate for John Brosnahan and Hannah Driscole [O’Driscoll],31 Mar 1865, Catholic Church, Christchurch, 1865/7579, NZ Births, Deaths & Marriages.
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