October 19, 2015 at 3:49 pm #2617
I attended a Monday Morning Natters meeting at a Genealogical Society of Queensland. The meetings are informal, normally including tea, coffee and cookies- talking all things research.
As I have a great interest interest in family history, I felt quite embarrassed that I had never visited this society before. I also tend to get insecure when stating I have an interest, but knowing I probably do not know all the skills and know-how of how to research a particular field.
A mixed group of people, mainly in the age group of 50 plus was in attendance. It was interesting hearing about the different ways people became interested in family history research, and of course what they have found.
Many of the people spend a lot of time at the library doing their research, I mainly do mine at home. A student in a forum post spoke about attending a program at the State Library, about what they provide for researchers, so I actually heard from a couple of attendees who also went. GSQ has an extensive library of published reference material, on all aspects of genealogy and family history, collected over many years. Their catalogue covers not only Queensland, but other Australian states, New Zealand and the Pacific, United Kingdom, Europe, and other overseas countries.
I did not use any of the equipment, however I did look around briefly at their facilities (will definitely go back when I have more time). As this was informal meeting, I can not be overly critical. What was provided to me however, was quite useful and therefore I am quite positive about my experience. GSQ offers multiple and various events throughout the month to help researchers such as: How to read primary documents and Introductions to family history.
Genealogy has shifted from being a stuffy, old-person hobby to being innovative. Indeed, now that so many items of documents are uploaded digitally, the demand in people being digital literate is high. And, as companies such as Ancestry.com and Find My Past dominate the ancestry digital world and also are quite expensive, there an increase on software to help family history researchers, manage their discovered records. The amount of information online including books or the advice from paid sites that claim what you SHOULD be doing and best practices for best results,, can be overwhelming, so having the services of societies and libraries is beneficial.
This program may have been relaxed and informal and with quite a few people knowing each other, however the welcome I received encourages me to try another program another day.
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