Tuesday, 26 February 2019


TROVE is known to many as the gift that keeps on giving, an incredible selection of digitised newspapers taking us back to the very early years of Australia's settlement.

However, it is much more than that... it has diaries, letters and archives, books, government gazettes, journals, articles and data sets, pictures, photos, objects, music, sound and video, maps. archived websites (1996-now), people and organisations, lists...  and all at your fingertips.. at https://trove.nla.gov.au

Just a sample of what can be found from Diaries, letters and archives...
As always, please click to enlarge

Passenger list of the 'Hartley' • Manuscript • State Library of South Australia
https://collections.slsa.sa.gov.au/resource/BRG+42/146/4/item Page 1 of 3

By wandering through Pictures, photos, objects... no surprise to regular readers that we get back to convicts...


object_158457_print Love token

Newspapers will still be the biggest drawcard. TROVE should really be thought of as a time machine, for it enables us to choose a time and place that we want to explore.

Courtesy of Clcker Free clip art

My obsession with convicts is constantly added to by trawling through TROVE.

It is a great place to find lists, such as these listing some of those convicts who have been granted Conditional Pardons...

Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954), Wednesday 10 September 1845, page 3
National Library of Australia. http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article12882077

 You can download in .jpg,  .pdf,  or text. Do take a few minutes now and then to correct text as needed, think of it as paying back to all those volunteers who have been correcting OCR ( Optical character recognition) so that you may see a clean transcription, as in the following item.

Warwick Examiner and Times (Qld. : 1867 - 1919), Saturday 11 January 1868, page 4

The hired convict ship Hougoumont proceeded down channel on October 1st, on her voyage to Freemantle, Western Australia, after receiving on board 150 convicts from the establish-ments at Chatham and Milbank. Among the convicts shipped were a party of fifteen Fenians, who were engaged in the late conspiracy in Ireland, together with the officers and crew convicted of scuttling the ship Severn, and some others who have achieved notoriety from their crimes. The Fenian convicts, like the remainder of the prisoners, were chained together in gangs, but it was observed that they were kept apart from the other convicts in a portion of the vessel by themselves. On Tuesday. October 8, the Hougomont arrived in Portland roads. Shortly before mid-day ninety convicts were marched down to the Government pier at Portland, under a strong escort of the 12th Light Infantry. The party included twenty three Fenian convicts, among whom it was said was Moriarty. The convicts were chained together on embarking, and on board the steamer a strong guard of marines was formed, and saw the convicts safely on board the trans-port. The Governor of the penal settlement at Freemantle, Captain Young, sails in the same ship, and returns to his sphere of duty, after paying a visit to his native land.

We all love stories, what better place to find them.. some don't seem all that different from happenings today, then again...consider the tale of 

Telegraph (Brisbane, Qld. : 1872 - 1947), Friday 12 March 1880, page 2
National Library of Australia http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article174710084

MORE CONVICTS... or Earl Grey's "Pets".. with military pensioners... this caused quite a stir.

Colonial Times (Hobart, Tas. : 1828 - 1857), Friday 30 November 1849, page 2
National Library of Australia http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article8766134

Whether the stories be long or short, we are fortunate to be able to read them just as our ancestors did.

The Ballarat Star 25 Jan 1889

                          The Albany Advertiser  31 Mar 1920


Back to the Pictures, photos, objects for a great photo...or rather, a negative... complete with history..

Glass negative, half plate, 'Old Convict Cells, Gosford', Kerry and Co, Sydney, Australia, c. 1884-1 

What have been your greatest finds on TROVE?

For me, they are many..
learning more about our colonial history..
'travelling' through changes in society...
the wonderful photos...
learning more about not only Australia, but also of so many other countries, dutifully reported...
but none surpass the discoveries about my family that somehow never came into daily conversations. 

I found reports of my mother's school concerts, and sports days... 
of her sister accidentally causing a small house fire..
of her father being fined for receiving tyres when they were rationed...
of the generosity of my paternal grandparents as they helped numerous people over many years...
There are reports of my maternal grandparents families, from arriving as convicts to, many generations later, working in all manner of places, including sawmills. 
I discovered the many sporting feats of my uncles and aunts. Funeral notices and obituaries have given me so many clues re family connections, including leading me to 'new' cousins...
I laughed at a report of my father and friend catching octopus for sport... sure, more like for the pot! Besides, Dad would never as much as kill a worm for sport.
I smiled at the description of my Aunt & Uncle's Greek wedding.
Funny, it sounded very similar to many weddings in my family, nothing unusual there.
I traced my grandparent's movements around NSW from cafes to farm to cafe to farm, then finally to a farm at a seaside village.
The list is far too long to include here, but if ever the good folk at TROVE need a glowing report, they only have to ask. 

Treasures Reaching Over Varied Eras


  1. Once again great reading - thank you

  2. Thank you, Flissie, for your comment and your ongoing support.

  3. Fascinating collection! Trove is my first port of call for further info on family locations & stories, and it rarely disappoints.

    1. I don't think I've ever not found something new on TROVE... it might not be the first thing I was looking for, but I often find things that i hadn't even considered.
      Thanks for your comment.


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