Monday, 17 May 2021

Thanks Gionni

Gionni di Gravio

Thanks to Gionni di Gravio OAM , an archivist and local hero, from the University of Newcastle for visiting The Lake Macquarie Family History Group for our general meeting last Saturday, 15th May.

As our guest speaker, Gionni relayed the latest news from Special Collections at The University of Newcastle and demonstrated how to search for resources on the Hunter Living Histories site,

We thank Gionni, an enthusiastic raconteur and committed ambassador for preserving and disseminating local history, for sharing his expertise with us.  Gionni's lively presentation warmed the atmosphere at Marmong Point on a very chilly day.

Gionni di Gravio at LMFHG

Thanks Gionni

Tuesday, 11 May 2021

Trove Tuesday - At the Beach

Redhead is a popular surfing beach in the Lake Macquarie City area. Trove reports on many incidents and activities at the beach. Following is a small selection. (If you have difficulty reading an article you can follow the link in its reference to access the article on the Trove site).

1923 'FELL OVERBOARD, AND SWAM FOR LIFE.', The Newcastle Sun (NSW : 1918 - 1954), 18 January, p. 1. , viewed 11 May 2021,

1927 'REDHEAD BEACH CARNIVAL.', Newcastle Morning Herald and Miners' Advocate (NSW : 1876 - 1954), 19 February, p. 6. , viewed 11 May 2021,

1928 'ANOTHER RESCUE', The Newcastle Sun (NSW : 1918 - 1954), 19 November, p. 8. , viewed 11 May 2021,

1930 'SECOND TRAGEDY.', Townsville Daily Bulletin (Qld. : 1907 - 1954), 2 September, p. 6. , viewed 11 May 2021,

1931 'PERFECT TAKE-OFF', The Newcastle Sun (NSW : 1918 - 1954), 26 January, p. 4. , viewed 11 May 2021,

1948 'Shipwrecked 5 Times', Newcastle Morning Herald and Miners' Advocate (NSW : 1876 - 1954), 11 March, p. 2. , viewed 11 May 2021,

1950 'Shark Sighted Off Redhead Beach', Newcastle Morning Herald and Miners' Advocate (NSW : 1876 - 1954), 13 November, p. 3. , viewed 11 May 2021,

Tuesday, 4 May 2021

Trove Tuesday - May Day

May Day, May 1st,  can refer to two celebrations the first day of a northern spring or, in some countries May Day is a day that recognises workers' rights. In some Australian States this is recognised with a public holiday on the first Monday in May. 

Today, we are taking a look at May Day events in the Lake Macquarie area, perhaps your ancestors took part in these events.

1924 'MAY DAY.', The Newcastle Sun (NSW : 1918 - 1954), 28 March, p. 1. , viewed 04 May 2021,

1929 'May Day', The Newcastle Sun (NSW : 1918 - 1954), 8 March, p. 6. , viewed 04 May 2021,

"LAKE MACQUARIE MAY DAY COMMITTEE." Newcastle Morning Herald and Miners' Advocate (NSW : 1876 - 1954) 23 April 1930: 8. Web. 4 May 2021 <>

1931 'MAY DAY CELEBRATION', The Newcastle Sun (NSW : 1918 - 1954), 22 April, p. 4. , viewed 04 May 2021,

1932 'MAY DAY AT BOOLAROO', The Newcastle Sun (NSW : 1918 - 1954), 11 April, p. 5. , viewed 04 May 2021,

1946 'May Day Proceeds For Lake Memorial', Newcastle Morning Herald and Miners' Advocate (NSW : 1876 - 1954), 28 January, p. 2. , viewed 04 May 2021,

1950 'Suburban and District Lakeside A.L.P. Protest on Beer Shortage', Newcastle Morning Herald and Miners' Advocate (NSW : 1876 - 1954), 2 May, p. 5. , viewed 04 May 2021,

Wednesday, 28 April 2021

LMFHG Genies cross the Border

In our first outing since the onset of Covid19 LMFHG members crossed the border into the neighbouring Central Coast Council area to visit Alison Homestead Museum at Wyong

Genies from Lake Macquarie had a successful excursion

The items on display in the several buildings at the venue provided stimulus for our conversations as we wandered around the site. Many members remarked that they have, in their homes and garages, treasures similar to those on display.

Alison Homestead and its gardens are beautifully maintained by a team of volunteers, the Central Coast area is fortunate in having such a magnificent site from which to tell their history. The many artifacts which are displayed across a number of buildings  are in good condition and are clearly labelled. It is definitely worth crossing the border to visit this venue.

Our thanks go the volunteers from Wyong District Museum & Historical Society who look after the site. Volunteers served us a Devonshire Tea on arrival and lunch at the conclusion of our tour. We are grateful to our member, Jean, for organising this outing and look forward to future opportunities to get out and about, learn about our history and enjoy the fellowship of our members.

Following are a few snaps from the site.

Tuesday, 27 April 2021

Trove Tuesday - Robert Hartley

As we  celebrated ANZAC Day this week we are today remembering a WW1 Digger who lived in Buttaba Hills.

1954 'OBITUARY', The Cessnock Eagle and South Maitland Recorder (NSW : 1913 - 1954), 22 October, p. 3. , viewed 28 Apr 2021,

Private Hartley was wounded in action.

1919 'CESSNOCK.', Newcastle Morning Herald and Miners' Advocate (NSW : 1876 - 1954), 1 January, p. 6. , viewed 28 Apr 2021,

Private Robert Hartley was awarded the Military medal in 1919.

1919 'Government Gazette Proclamations and Legislation', Commonwealth of Australia Gazette (National : 1901 - 1973), 15 September, p. 1364. , viewed 28 Apr 2021,

Details of Robert's award from The AIF Project page:

'For conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty during the operations of 26th, 27th and 28th August 1918, which resulted in the capture of FOUCAUCOURT and the advancing of our line beyond ESTREES. The platoon to which this man belonged came under very heavy machine gun fire during the attack on the village, and was temporarily held up. This man went out alone to a forward position and sniped four enemy machine gunners thereby putting the enemy guns out of action and allowing the advance to continue with a minimum of casualties. Later in the operation he went out with two other men across country swept by machine guns to link up with the English troops on the right flank who were out of touch. The work of this man during the whole of the operation was of a very high order.' 

Tuesday, 20 April 2021

Trove Tuesday - Volunteers

 In today's post we remember the work  of volunteer fire fighters in our community.

1928 'HARD FIGHT', The Newcastle Sun (NSW : 1918 - 1954), 9 November, p. 7. , viewed 20 Apr 2021,

1933 'VOLUNTEER FIRE FIGHTERS', The Newcastle Sun (NSW : 1918 - 1954), 14 January, p. 3. , viewed 20 Apr 2021,

1936 'Newcastle', The Newcastle Sun (NSW : 1918 - 1954), 6 November, p. 5. , viewed 20 Apr 2021,

1951 'Fire-fighters Praised At Valentine', Newcastle Morning Herald and Miners' Advocate (NSW : 1876 - 1954), 27 November, p. 4. , viewed 20 Apr 2021,

Monday, 19 April 2021

Killing off the ancestors

Most family historians in Australia use The Ryerson Index in their hunt to find or verify death details of their ancestors.

At our general meeting last Saturday Bob Atkins, a Ryerson volunteer, gave two presentations to our members and guests on the history of the Ryerson Index, how to search the index and new innovations from Ryerson.

Bob Atkins addressing our Members

Bob emphasized that the Ryerson index which currently has 7,785,728 entries from 391 newspapers and websites is maintained and managed by a group of volunteers. If you can spare some regular time to support this organisation you can find more information on this page on the Ryerson site, So you want to be in indexer. Our members at Lake Macquarie are hoping that some of our members and friends will consider joining Ryerson as an indexer.

Bob's sessions, presented to a live audience, were also shared with members remotely via Zoom. Bob indicated that this was a first time a Ryerson presentation had been presented to an online audience via this medium. We, at Lake Macquarie Family History Group, are proud to have facilitated this first online event.
Bob Atkins presenting on Zoom