Oct 24, 2013

Letters

 

Collecting and sharing letters and other memorabilia from family members can provide family historians with valuable insights to the personal lives and thoughts of their ancestors.  Recently I have been trying to put some order into my rather small collection of family letters written in the first 50 years or so of the 20th century, and it is interesting to see how much detail they contain about a time when most contact was by post.

A letter my grandmother sent to her sister a couple of days before her son’s death from measles complications reveals her distress and anxiety. She begs her sister to hurry home to help her with the crisis.

Another  letter from  my great uncle to his father  from the Western Front during World War 1 talks about how “the land around here looks a lot like home". He goes on to say "it would be really good for wheat growing “. In the same letter he mentions a cousin who “bought it” and he states that there is nothing you can do if your number is up. Uncle Martin, along with thousands of others, was killed late in the war, in the month before the armistice.

There is also a collection of letters exchanged between my older brothers and sisters and my parents during the early 1960’s. They include the usual and expected snippets of family gossip and day to day happenings, along with some other details of train journeys to the country, involving changes of train, missed connections and assorted catastrophes.  I can’t imagine parents of today, including myself, sending two primary school aged children on such a journey alone.

Now, of course, hand written letters are rare and we now share details of our lives with family and friends via email, Facebook, Twitter and numerous other social media sharing platforms. Hopefully some of this information will be available to future generations so that they too can gain some insight into our lives.

Jennie

 

Oct 8, 2013

More Victorian World War I era newspapers now online

Dozens of Victorian World War I era newspapers have recently been digitised through the Statewide Public Library Development Projects (a collaboration between the State Library of Victoria and Public Libraries Victoria Network). They are now available online on the wonderful Trove digitised newspapers website.

If you are not already familiar with the historical newspapers that are available via Trove you should definately take a look. The site allows you to read, search and browse historical newspapers from around Australia, including both major daily papers such as Melbourne's Argus(1848-1957 digitised) and local papers such as the Essendon Gazette(1914-18 digitised) and the Flemington Spectator(1914-18 digitised). It is a great resource to use to search for family notices and local historical articles. Plus the old advertisements are often fascinating.

Here is the list of Victorian titles recently added, (with the dates available):
  • Alpine Observer and North-Eastern Herald(Vic. : 1916 - 1918)
  • Berringa Herald (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Birchip Advertiser and Watchem Sentinel(Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Bruthen and Tambo Times (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Bunyip Free Press and Berwick Shire Guardian (Vic. : 1914 - 1915)
  • Castlemaine Mail (Vic. : 1917 - 1918)
  • Chiltern and Howlong Times and Ovens Register (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Cobram Courier (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Cohuna Farmer's Weekly (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Donald Times (Vic. : 1915 - 1918)
  • Foster and Toora Mirror and South Gippsland Shire Advocate (Vic. : 1914)
  • Foster Mirror and South Gippsland Shire Advocate (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Gippsland Independent, Buln Buln, Warragul, Berwick, Poowong & Jeetho Shire Advocate (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Gippsland Standard and Alberton Shire Representative (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Gippslander and Mirboo Times (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Gisborne Gazette (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Glengarry, Toongabbie & Cowwarr Journal and Central Gippsland Reporter (Vic. : 1914)
  • Gordon, Egerton and Ballan Advertiser (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Heyfield Herald (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Hopetoun Courier and Mallee Pioneer (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Inglewood Advertiser (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Kooweerup Sun, Lang Lang Guardian and Cranbourne Shire Record (Vic. : 1918)
  • Kyneton Guardian (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Lancefield Mercury and West Bourke Agricultural Record (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Lismore, Derrinallum and Cressy Advertiser (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Mortlake Dispatch (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Myrtleford Mail and Whorouly Witness(Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Narracan Shire Advocate (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Nhill Free Press (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Northcote Leader (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Omeo Standard and Mining Gazette (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Pitfield Banner and Hollybush Times(Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Punch (Melbourne, Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Quambatook Times (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Rainbow Argus (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Rosedale Courier (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Rupanyup Spectator and Lubeck, Banyena, Rich Avon and Lallat Advertiser (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Rutherglen Sun and Chiltern Valley Advertiser (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Shepparton News (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Stawell News and Pleasant Creek Chronicle (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Stratford Sentinel and Briagolong Express (Vic. : 1911 - 1916)
  • Terang Express (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Trafalgar & Yarragon Times (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Truth (Melbourne ed.) (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Tungamah & Lake Rowan Express and St. James Gazette (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Ultima & Chillingollah Star(Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Upper Murray & Mitta Herald (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Violet Town Sentinel (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Wedderburn Express and Korongshire Advertiser(Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • Weekly Times (Vic. : 1914 - 1918)
  • West Wimmera Mail and Nutimuk Advertiser(Vic. : 1914 - 1918)

  • Oct 3, 2013

    Who do you think we were?



    Can you identify any of the people in this wedding photo?

    Moonee Valley Libraries has put together an album of photographs, all drawn from our collection of historical local history photographs, which over the years have been donated to the Library but with very limited accompanying information about the people, places or events depicted. The Library is seeking to gather information about these photos in order to enhance the photo collection and to broaden its understanding of Moonee Valley’s history.

    Please take a look at our online album, and share the link with anyone you know who just might know some of the people featured. If you can identify anyone or anything featured, please contact us at Moonee Valley Libraries.

    Julia