Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Genies packin' for cruisin'

This post is for genies who are planning to go on the genealogical cruise in Feb 2014: Fourth Unlock the Past Cruise: Southern Australia.

Source of image: http://www.unlockthepastcruises.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/05/Voyager-Adelaide-2.jpg

Recently, I asked a few people for some tips on what to pack for the genealogical cruise I'm embarking on in February 2014. Thanks to all who have helped me with this preparation.

Here are a few ideas I have gathered up so far:
  • windproof jacket as well as a lightweight jacket and a scarf for neck and shoulders - handy for being on the deck and in cooler air-conditioned rooms
  • a notebook or two, and/or an iPad, for taking notes in the presentations, recording new contacts
  • BYO coffee if you like good coffee
  • Bathers or cossies, depending what state you're from, and a cover-up from getting to your room to the pool area
  • a smallish over-the-shoulder pouch or purse that allows you to store a few minor essentials when making short trips around the ship when you don't want to cart your entire handbag
  • travel detergent to do a bit of laundry in your room
  • over-the-door bags with small compartments for keeping jewellery and other smaller items that get lost in your luggage
  • make sure your luggage is labelled inside and out with your name, cabin number and mobile phone number 
  • some type of rainwear
  • a couple of "sparkly outfits", as Jill Ball calls them, but don't go overboard with formal wear
  • thumb drives - handy for swapping files between genies when/if the internet isn't working too well

For more tips on what to take on this cruise, see
Here's a reminder about our itinerary:

  • Tue 4 Feb Sydney – depart 9pm
  • Wed 5 Feb Cruising – conference day 
  • Thu 6 Feb Melbourne – in port 8am – 8pm 
  • Fri 7 Feb Cruising – conference day 
  • Sat 8 Feb Adelaide – in port 8am – 6pm
  • Sun 9 Feb Cruising – conference day 
  • Mon 10 Feb Hobart – in port 2pm – overnight
  • Tue 11 Feb Hobart – all day – 5pm
  • Wed 12 Feb Cruising – conference day 
  • Thu 13 Feb Sydney – arrive 6am

Monday, December 30, 2013

An alternative to the unavailable Rookwood Cemetery Deceased Online

If you have Catholic ancestors who were buried at Rookwood cemetery in NSW, this blogpost may be worthwhile for you.
File:Rookwood Necropolis.JPG

We have all lamented the unavailability of the deceased online search facility on the Rookwood Cemetery (NSW) website: currently unavailable. So, here is an alternative ...

The Catholic Cemeteries and Crematoria site does allow you to search for your ancestors' graves if they are buried in the Catholic section of the cemeteries listed below. It's quite a good search engine (see http://search.catholiccemeteries.org.au/), allowing you to search the following cemeteries:
  • Catholic Cemetery Field Of Mars- Ryde 1890
  • Catholic Cemetery Greendale
  • Catholic Cemetery Kemps Creek
  • Liverpool Cemetery & Crematorium
  • Catholic Cemetery North Rocks
  • The Religious Society of Friends (Quaker) - Rookwood
  • Catholic Cemetery Necropolis Rookwood

Something special about this search engine ...

The special thing about this search engine is that it provides you with the details of graves either side of the grave you are searching for.

Although the graves either side of James' grave (grave no. 141 and 143) didn't have gravestones, I kept searching until I found graves with headstones.

This is great if, like me, many of your ancestors have been buried in gravestone-less graves. In 1945 when my great-grandfather was buried at Rookwood cemetery, I guess that not many people had a lot of spare money, at the end of World War II, to spend on gravestones. So, there aren't many graves around his grave that had headstones. The closest graves with headstones to his grave (no. 142) were graves numbers 138 and 150. Based on the information about these two graves with gravestones, I was able to work out where he was buried.

Using this search engine, I found out that Robert Wallschutzky was buried in Grave 138:

... and James Tanner was buried in Grave 150

There were no gravestones in between these two graves with gravestones (no. 138 and no. 150). However, by counting the spaces, I could work out where grave no. 142 was - where my great-grandfather, James Walter KINGSBURY, was buried.

James Walter KINGSBURY's gravesite (30 Dec 2013)

James Walter KINGSBURY

He died on 19 June 1945, aged 77 years, and was buried on 21 June 1945 in the Roman Catholic Section graves, Mortuary 2 , Area 17, grave no. 142 at Rookwood Cemetery.

Although I didn't find out any additional information about his life by finding his gravestone-less grave, it was satisfying to stand at the place where he was laid to rest.

Friday, December 27, 2013

Genealogy cruise count-down: 38 days to go

Ever thought of going on a genealogy-filled cruise for over a week of genealogy-related activities? Well, I thought about this early this year and, after being encouraged by a few other Genies Down Under listeners, I took the plunge and booked my first ever genealogy cruise. Actually, it's my first cruise ever. The last time I spent more than a few days on a boat was back in the 1980s, travelling down the Nile in a felucca sailing boat. However, I expect the Voyager of the Seas to be a equipped a little better than the felucca - that is, I reckon it will have a few things that the felucca didn't - internet, a bed, toilets! I can't wait ... for the cruise, that is:)

Here is our boat - which I probably should call a "cruise ship". It's more like a building than a boat ..

Voyager of the Seas

... a bit different from the felucca in Egypt all those years ago.

Some highlights I'm looking forward to on the genealogy cruise ...
  • Living and breathing genealogy for over a week.
  • Meeting up with some other Genies Down Under listeners.
  • Listening to some well-known genealogy presenters from Down Under and overseas - Jill Ball, Jan Gow, Thomas MacEntee, Julie Goucher, Chris Paton, Shauna Hicks, Noelene Kyle and other fantastic presenters.
  • Seeing some of my favourite Australian cities during port stops.
  • Finding out more about DNA and genealogy
  • Being part of a panel about ethics and genealogy
  • Giving a presentation on Friday 7 Feb  at 8.30am called "Using free podcasts"
  • Being a cruise blogger. See the list of other cruise bloggers (scroll down).
So, where are we going? Starting in Sydney, we then head to Melbourne, Adelaide, Hobart and then back to Sydney. Here is our route:

Finally, thanks so much to Alan Philips and his team at Unlock the Past for their fantastic organisation of this cruise.

For more information on future Unlock the Past genealogical cruises, please go to their Unlock the Past site.