Welcome to 2017!

This year promises to be a good one, for this little group. Bankstown Sports Club are again, sponsoring us and for this we are extremely thankful. Knowing that the room and AV are set up each month, is great.


I’ve been busy chasing down speakers for us and with Rowan’s help were have February to June filled and then September as well.


February 7th.Breaking down your Brickwalls. Bring along the line you are stuck on and   let’s see if we can help you knock it down.

March 7th. – Getting Organised. Lilian Magill and Rowan Morrison are presenting this. We could have a clash, for Rowan. If this happens Rowan will present his talk in July.

April 4th – Obscure Place Names and Parish Maps.  Jeff Madsen is a font of knowledge, pertaining to maps and this talk will discuss how to locate that obscure place name that you have been searching for and then search for and download parish maps to your computer for further research.’ I have attended talks by Jeff and come away with new ways to look at and use maps.

May 2nd -  Karen Rogers from the Guild Of One Name Studies. (GOONS),  will talk about the Guild and how to do a one name study.  It isn’t as hard as you think.

June 6th – Ryerson Index. John Graham is the person who co-ordinates this wonderful index. Have a look at it:- http://www.ryersonindex.org/

July 4th – Annual General Meeting.


I won’t be at the February meeting as I will be attending a conference, RootsTech, in Salt Lake City. I will share interesting bits, later in the year.


Happy Ancestor Hunting.

Lilian Magill

A small, but interested group, attended last nights meeting, with several having dinner, beforehand.

Donna Newton, from the Royal Australian Historical Society, gave a very interesting talk on the Library Collection. Explaining have the society started and what sort of things are in the collection.

The discussion, after was great and many of the members found that the RAHS, might just hold something that they are looking for. I know I did and am planning a trip to town.

Below are some photos from the evening.


Lilian Magill

P1620961 P1620964 P1620967 P1620968


Seventeen people braved the cold and rain to attend our meeting, last night. Allan Murrin presented a workshop on FamilySearch.org

The projector was very out of focus, making it very hard to see what he was pointing to and the internet was slow, but I think everyone had a good time.

We had been give a Gift Voucher, from The National Institute of Genealogical Studies, Toronto, for our door prize. It was for a free subject, of your choice, to the value of $120. John Moore was the winner and I'm sure he will be able to find a topic to study.

This Saturday, 6th, is the Royal Australian Historical Society's day at Bankstown. Check out our links page to see all about it.

October 22 -23 is the weekend, conference. This year in Wollongong.

Next month, Donna from the library at RAHS, will be our guest speaker..

Also next month, the NSW Family History Societies are having their conference, at Camden, again see our what's on page, for details.


Bye for now,



Presidents Report for the year 2015-2016.

Welcome to the second Annual General Meeting of the Bankstown Family History Group.

I would like to acknowledge the Bidjigal/Dharug peoples, traditional owners of the land that the Bankstown Sports Club is on.

The past twelve months have seen the group maintain steady numbers at each meeting. We have had some members leave, due to ill health and personal reasons. We have also welcomed new members.

From June 2015 until December 2015 we met in Community room 2, at the Bankstown Library and Knowledge Centre. This venue was good but we could not rely on the room being open, for our meetings and then they increased the room hire fees, to more than double. This led us to seek a new, reasonably priced venue that would offer us stability. Rowan Morrison approached the Bankstown District Sports Club, on our behalf and they have very generously sponsored us, with both the room and AV requirements. I would like to personally thank the Club for their ongoing support and I know that the members of this group feel safer, coming here, than over at the library.

We have had a wide range of guest speakers, covering a wonderful array of topics. With the centenary of the ANZAC landings, we had Alan Ashton speak on WW1 and then in April several members presented stories of the own service personal. Janette Pelosi and John Cann, both from NSW Archives came and imparted their knowledge. Janette on what the archives holds and how to access them and John on what records related to the Bankstown area. Both talks were very useful.

Lorraine Turtle took us beyond Birth, Death and Marriages, with her talk.

We have had several people come and talk about how they researched and then published their information. It is always good to hear what others have done, as this gives us new ideas.

December saw our Christmas party, and the night we were locked out of the room, Melissa Hulbert, gave a wonderful talk on Photoshop Elements on how to look after and fix your old photos.


Rowan chaired the February meeting, as I was in Salt Lake City, attending RootsTech. Thank you Rowan for this and being the Chairman, in July and August, whilst I was overseas.

The March meeting had Jill Ball and I speak about our time at RootsTech. This is a massive genealogy conference, held in Salt Lake City, every February. It combines genealogy and technology, with speakers, workshops and vendors.

May brought our second birthday, a fact that slipped by me as we had Cassie Mercer, from Inside History, as our guest speaker and she was wonderful. We have purchased several of the books, she was promoting and they have been added to our library.

Last September we were awarded a small grant of $800, towards our room fees. As I have mentioned, we have changed venues and no longer pay fees. This money has been used to cover our insurance, something we have kept going, for our peace of mind, and other expenses we have. We haven’t applied for any grants this year.


We have a new website, thank you Teresa Clark, for you work on that. The comments have been very favourable. Our Facebook page is attracting new members but this hasn’t transferred to paid members, as such.


With the amalgamation of Bankstown and Canterbury Councils, we no longer have a patron.

We had a table at the Royal Australian Historical Society’s annual conference, held in October. The event was well attended and comments about having a family history group, in the area, were good.


I would like to say “Thank You” to my committee and to you members, without your support and encouragement, this group would not exist.

(Having problems with the photos, they show in the draft but not on the site. 🙁 )

We had a small but enthusiastic group, last night, to hear John Cann speak on 'Discovering Bankstown'. He gave us a wonderful tour through State Archives, NSW Lands Department, National Archives, Trove and NSW Birth, Death and Marriages. From land grants, to school records and the fire,  destroyed the Torch newspaper. The journey was full of interesting tit bits and how to access the information.

I also mentioned a letter that the group had received from, The Women's Pioneer Society and I've attached the photo, with the details.

Here is the link to the NSW State Library. They offer interesting talks and workshops and you can access information, online, just by having a library card. The card is free and it is well worth obtaining one.


Bye for now,


John CannP1620571