Monday, October 24, 2016

A First Cousin Once Removed

Some time last year when Mr GeniAus tracked down the contact details of his father's first cousin he immediately contacted her by 'phone and asked would she mind if we visited some time.  Then life got in the way.

Finally on Sunday we made our way up the motorway to the Port Stephens region where the cousin resides. We had armed ourselves with some ancestor charts, a narrative on some of her Ball ancestors, copies of photos and some chocolate biscuits. Can you believe I left my camera behind in our accommodation in Newcastle? Luckily Mr GeniAus and I both had our mobile 'phones. I had my laptop in the car but didn't take it into the house initially as I didn't want to overwhelm this octogenerian. 

Mr GeniAus' Grandfather - there is a strong family resemblance
We organised our arrival for 10:00 am so the cousin wouldn't feel obligated to feed us. Of course we stayed longer and enjoyed lunch with the cousin and her husband. The cousin was most interested in her family history but didn't have any certificates or documents to share. She corroborated stories we had heard and gave us some names and dates that provided enough clues to track down references for some BDMs  and burials. She was able to help us identify some family members in our photos and we set her straight on one she had mislabelled. 

It was a Win-Win day - we came away with images of two studio photographs of Mr GeniAus' Great-grandmother one of which was with his Grandfather. This was so special because the only photos we have of these two are a couple of blurry amateur images. The cousin was delighted because of the documents we had prepared for her. 

The icing on the cake was when I fetched my computer from the car and read the cousin an account of her parents' wedding I had found on Trove. When we got home Mr G printed off a hard copy and have mailed it to her with a copy of her Grandmother's will.

I had a fun day today going through the notes and finding references including articles from Trove to add to my database.

Collaboration Rocks.

Friday, October 21, 2016

GAGs - GeniAus' Gems - 21 October 2016

I had my grandparent's hat on today at one of the granddaughter's schools so this GeniAus' Gems is an evening edition.

Mr GeniAus is interviewed today at Grandparents' Day
It feels like I have read and saved lots of beaut blog posts to Evernote this week and, although I could share them all with you, I like to restrict my list to no more than a baker's dozen. My tough task for the next half hour or so is to cull my saved list. I reiterate that this list is subjective and reflects what strikes a chord with me.

5. Because I have family in Eastwood.

6. For my mates who are bibliophiles.

7. Help needed by one of the quirky blogs I follow.

8. On keeping a diary - from Patsy.

10. Do you use this phrase?

New to Me Blogs

 Gordon Family History

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Funeral Booklets

When I attended a family funeral yesterday both Mr GeniAus and I took a funeral booklet/order of service.

I have been sorting out my huge "to be sorted" pile of ephemera this week and I came across several duplicate funeral books for family members. I really only need one of each for my files. I then remembered the bottom drawer of my filing cabinet where I have a collection of funeral books for unrelated people. I have saved all of the funeral books for services I have attended over the years plus I have been given some by people who are aware of my hoardng and genealogy obsessions.  I realised that these private publications can be a goldmine of genealogical information and wondered  if I should I should share them with the geneacommunity. Some of the earliest booklets I have are quite simple while some of the newer ones are quite sophisticated publications but they all contain genealogical data. One would hope that the people compiling these publications  provide accurate information.

The latest addition to my collection gives birth and death dates for the deceased, the name of the celebrant and the names of those taking part in the service. It is highly likely that some of these people are family members. The booklet also has two pages of photographs of the deceased covering his life span. Some of these booklets give other information like the date and time of the service and details of the burial or cremation.

I am going to gather up my collection of duplicate family booklets and those for unrelated persons and offer them to a genealogy society or library that I hope will index them. I may even offer to index them if the repository provides me with guidelines.

What do you do with the funeral booklets you collect? Please don't toss them - send them to me and I'll add them to my collection.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Trove Tuesday - Adding to the Pusell story

Nearly everyone in Australia with the name of Pusell (and variants) is related to me. We are descendants of the convict James Pusill

My Grandmother Ethel Jane Pusell (Bottom right) and siblings
As I hadn't done a simple Trove search for Pusell in a while I thought it time to repeat the search. I was rewarded with a few more snippets about my Pusell cousins. I found all of these in The Lithgow Mercury (NSW : 1898 - 1954)  that must have been digitised since I last did this search. While I was at it I also corrected the text in most of the articles I found.

An obituary confirmed much of the infoormation I had on this family and provided some new leads. As the original article is hard to read I am providing a transcription.

Particularly well known in Lithgow district where she had lived for many years, Mrs. Eliza Jane Pusell, late of the Pottery Enclosure, passed away last night, in Lithgow hospital, aged 71years.
Deceased had been a patient at the hospital for the past four months and her passing was not unexpected. 

Although of a quiet, home-loving nature, the late Mrs. Pusell had an unusually large circle of friends who will mourn her passing. Born at Bylong, she is sur-vived by her husband, Mr. John James Pusell and one son and four daughters, members of the family being Mr. John James Pusell, Jnr., of Woilon-
gong, Charlotte (Mrs. K. Ross, of Brisbane), Alice (Mrs. B.Hanby, of Auburn), Mary (Mrs.F. Jackson, of Pottery Estate and Lena (Mrs. R. Delaney, of Kurri Kurri),. to whom sym-pathy will be extended.

A resident of the Pottery Estate for many years, deceas-ed did not take an active interest in public affairs, but was a keen conversationalist and was every ready to help in times of trouble. Her value
as a neighbor and friend was held in high regard and she held the esteem of all who knew her.

The funeral has been, set down for tomorrow, being scheduled to leave the funeral parlors of Messrs. Wood and Wood following a service tim-ed to begin at 4 p.m. for in-terment in the Church of Eng-
land portion of Bowenfels cemetery.

 Source: 1953 'LITHGOW DEATHS', Lithgow Mercury (NSW : 1898 - 1954), 6 March, p. 2. (CITY EDITION), viewed 17 Oct 2016,

From 1926 I have a mystery to solve - I don't know which of the Pusell girls is referred to in this article.

1926 '"Miss Lithgow" Candidates.', Lithgow Mercury (NSW : 1898 - 1954), 31 December, p. 4. , viewed 17 Oct 2016,
Text Transcription for the above article: 
Miss Pusell, has been nominated by the Lithgow Athletic Club, the members of which are determined to demon-strate they have organising as well as athletic ability. They have several schemes in mind which are calculated to give them a good fighting, fund. Miss Pusell has an engaging personality, and this should stand her in good stead when votes are being sought.

There were details of a fatal accident:

1948 'ANOTHER MOTOR CYCLE TRAGEDY', Lithgow Mercury (NSW : 1898 - 1954), 12 August, p. 2. , viewed 17 Oct 2016,

I won't publish the 1948 birth notice I found for a previously unknown cousin of mine as I hope she is still alive and kicking. I have added her to my family history database.
This wedding report gave me further info on family members:

1933 'WRIGHT-PUSELL WEDDING',Lithgow Mercury (NSW : 1898 - 1954), 12 October, p. 4. (TOWN EDITION), viewed 17 Oct 2016,


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