Australian and New Zealand Genealogy Online Classes

The next Australian and New Zealand Genealogy class offered by Genclass.com starts on the 1st May. Genclass is a USA-based company that offers online training on a wide range of genealogical topics and geographic areas. The instructors are all experienced educators in the field of family history research. Courses last for a month, two lessons per week. Students receive the materials for the class by email and take part in online discussions with the instructor, who is also available for questions via email.

The Australia and New Zealand class is taught by Kerry Farmer, a member of the Education Committee of the Society of Australian Genealogists who has given classes to community college groups for over 10 years.

I have seen the preparation and commitment that Kerry puts into all of her classes and seminars and I can highly recommend this course.

You can see more details of the class topics here.

New Zealand BDM Search is now online

The New Zealand Registrar of Births Deaths and Marriages has released its online index for historical births deaths and marriages. Records are restricted according to their new privacy provisions to births more than 100 years old, still births more than 50 years old, marriages more than 80 years old, and deaths more than 50 years old where the deceased was born more than 80 years ago.

Once you have found a result that you think might be useful you can order a copy online for NZ$26.00 for records before 1874 and NZ$20.00 for records after 1874. This equates to about $21.00 or $16 Australian. If you are given a choice between a certificate and a computer printout make sure you ask for a computer printout – these are like photocopies and contain more information (and are cheaper!).

Birth results give parents’ given names for easier identification. Marriages can be searched by both parties’ names, although if you search by one name you don’t get the other one in the results list. 

The website is here: http://www.bdmhistoricalrecords.identityservices.govt.nz/search/.

It’s slow at the moment but that may be because so many people are trying it out, like me! Sometimes it gives up and asks you to try again. I’m sure these problems will be resolved in time.

The days of poring over microfiche a year or a few years at a time and then sending a form and waiting a few weeks are over.