Monday, November 3, 2014

Military/Service records

With the centenary of the First World War approaching, there has been a lot of interest in military and service records of family members. Below are some useful sites for locating military records and other information about Australians who served in military conflicts and records of British soldiers in Australia in the early days of settlement.

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National Library of Australia's Digital Future

The National Library of Australia (NLA) has undertaken an innovative digital library program to redevelop its infrastructure in order to manage its huge digital collections and provide access to collections from hundreds of libraries across its network. The library is expanding its online and mobile services for Australian and international users. More than 70,000 people use its Trove service each day and 22 million users were clocked up last year.  Over 3 petabytes of content is being accessed online and through mobile devices. This content includes more than 13 million digitised newspapers and hundreds of thousands of digitised Australiana items. Access to the Library’s digital content is through Trove, a free discovery and engagement service that also integrates content from more than 1000 libraries, museums, archives and research organisations. Trove offers online access to a vast catalogue of online books, newspapers, maps, music and journal articles. Trove has more than 7000 Twitter followers and tweets feature items of interest in the national collection. The NLA’s main twitter account has more than 23,000 followers. The NLA is the fourth most followed Australian government organisation and the most followed cultural institution. Using social media has proved an effective way of getting the NLA collections to online users, as increasingly, library users are online or using mobile and smart devices to download or share content. You can read more about this project at

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Great Aunty Alice

When doing our family history, we all need help from a great aunt at some time. If yours have all passed on, you could try Great Aunty Alice, a new website, which is a directory of independent genealogical researchers based across the UK and around the world. No matter what stage you are at with your family tree, whether you need help with a small specific problem or would like someone to carry out extensive research, Great Aunty Alice has an array of researchers for you to choose from.
The site contains listings of genealogists, some are professionals while others are amateurs who are willing to help. All genealogy research questions are handled privately in email, not on the web site. Of course, professionals would need to be paid for their time and everyone should be reimbursed for any expenses they may incur, such as travel expenses, photocopying fees, postage, and more.
The web site's owner does not receive commissions for clients the researchers receive, and each listing is written by the individual researcher explaining their services. Great Aunty Alice simply serves as a directory to help put people in touch.

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