Tasmanian Family History Society Inc. Hobart Branch

News - February 2020

Editor: Judith Crossin

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Tues 18 February - 7.30pm General Meeting

VENUE: Old Sunday School Hall, St John's Park

GUEST SPEAKER: Joyce Purtscher

TOPIC: Neglected Children Index. Joyce will talk about her recent book, 'Tasmanian Index of Children and Families contained in the files of SWD1 (Neglected Children's Department) 1888 - 1936

More for Your Diary

Thu 20 February - 10.00am Branch Committee Meeting

VENUE: Branch Library, Bellerive

Thu 20 February - 1.30pm DNA Group Meeting

VENUE: Church Hall at St Marks Anglican Church, Bellerive

Thu 27 February - 2pm Library Committee

VENUE: Branch Library, Bellerive

Tue 17 March - 7:30pm - General Meeting

GUEST SPEAKER: Michael Holmes

TOPIC: The best of the best Vanishing Towns.  Michael will talk about his latest module covering his "best of the best" of Vanishing Towns

Library Accessions

Library Accessions August 2019

The following items were accessioned during the month of August.

Books / Computer Disks

No new books or computer disks


The recorded presentation "Interpreting your DNA Results" was launched at a well-attended General Meeting in January. This is a follow-up to the earlier recorded presentation on "Considering DNA Testing for Family History". Both one-hour recordings are available for viewing at the TFHS Library at Bellerive. They is also on the 'TFHS Hobart DNA Interest Group' Facebook group page, under Videos, where they can be watched at home with lots of pauses to absorb and take notes. Any current financial member of the TFHS can request to join the DNA Facebook group.


The Tasmanian Family History Society Inc. membership year runs from 1 April to 31 March.

In the past the membership renewal form was sent with the December Tasmanian Ancestry journal, however, in order to streamline our procedures and systems we will in future include the renewal form with the March issue of Tasmanian Ancestry which will be mailed out late February.

We look forward to your continuing membership and hope you enjoy the Tasmanian Ancestry Journal and all the benefits that come with being a member of Tasmanian Family History Society Inc.


Two hundred years ago, the Morley sailed from London to Hobart Town. This was the first time that convict women were sent to Van Diemen's Land directly from England. The convict women on the Morley arrived at a time before the Hobart Town Female Factory was established, raising the question of how they were managed. The Morley disembarked 50 of its cargo of 121 women; the remainder sailed to Sydney. This pattern of shared voyages continued for some time and it was not until the Providence in 1826 that a female convict ship disembarked its entire shipment of convict women in Hobart.

Our Seminar for 2020 will explore the experience of those convict women who came directly to Hobart Town and compare it with those who came via Sydney. Why was the system changed? What impact did it have on the lives of the convict women?

Registration will be $50 (plus 50c. Trybooking fee). Registration is now available through TryBooking. The venue will be the Hobart Town Hall.


Dianne Snowden (President) Female Convicts Research Centre Inc.


The Everyday Lives in War is a collaboration between 6 English universities which encourages community research, particularly in the following areas:

This page on the website looks at children's lives, starting with a description of the horrific 'Exploding Trench' game - which was withdrawn from sale soon after its release.

Of course, childhood is not just about toys and play, but children and the First World War is a relatively under-researched area amongst the wealth of material available on the conflict - Rosie Kennedy's wonderful The Children's War, 1914-1918 was published in 2014 and is the only detailed study available of the British experience. A key issue for researchers is the lack of unmediated sources: most of the material relating to children comes through the voices of adults. Reading school log books, for example, provides glimpses of the pupils' activities: the 'Blackberry Drives'; the collection of horse-chestnuts for the production of cordite; and the celebration of national ideals on Empire and Trafalgar Days, but unlike the French archives there do not appear to be collections of the pupil's personal responses to events, no treasure trove of essays and drawings. Examination of other sources indicates that the war featured in classroom teaching given the publication of texts such as Why Britain Went to War - to the Boys and Girls of the British Empire by James Yoxall an MP and secretary of the National Union of Teachers in 1914, which delivered the message in terms that its audience would have understood: the nasty bullying habits of Germany needed to be curtailed by better, more principled nations who were morally straight and true. The children's personal responses, however, are harder to locate.


Indexing the Register

This Register of children, who for various reasons were wards of the State, was maintained by the Neglected Children's Department in a file referred to as SWD1. This file is now available on-line at the Tasmanian Archives website and provides information for family historians and a view of social history of Tasmania in the years covered between 1888 and 1936. The talk will focus on issues associated with indexing colonial documents in general, and the sensitivity of the material contained in the Neglected Children Register. The talk will be illustrated with stories and patterns of human behaviour which have emerged from the indexing process.

Joyce Purtscher - Hobart Branch Member

Apart from being a longstanding member of the Hobart Branch of the Tasmanian Family History Society Inc., Joyce has had a long association with the Friends of the Orphan School and the St John's Park Precinct. An experienced indexer of colonial and convict records, Joyce has long had an interest in Tasmania's social history. She has indexed the names contained in the SW1 register and handed over publishing rights of the index to the Branch, from which the publication is available from the Branch Library in Bellerive.