"Each has his own tree of ancestors, but at the top of all sits Probably Arboreal." - Robert Louis Stevenson

Friday, 24 February 2012

On WDYTYA Live 2012: Must-visits and must-buys

Unfortunately, I’m not attending WDYTYA Live this year, mostly because I’m a bit skint! However, I am reflecting on what I would be doing if I were there, and, crucially, what I intend to do to fulfil the same needs instead...

First up, my must-visit stands:
Archives for London
British Deaf History Society - Last year I spoke to a them about my Birchall Geoghegan ancestors, many of whom were deaf and dumb from birth. I now know a lot more about these ancestors, including that they attended a specialist school in Manchester, so I would hope to pursue this further with the society and see if they could give me any further historical contextual info and tell me what records might be available and where to find them.
East Surrey FHS
Family History Bookshop
Lincolnshire FHS
Manchester and Lancashire FHS 
North of Ireland Family History Society
OxfordShire FHS
Pahro Teaching and Tutoring Ltd– they advertise ‘short and reasonably priced online family history courses’, which are certainly what I am looking for in terms of training, so I’d definitely be picking up some literature from them and chatting to them about their courses.
Somerset and Dorset FHS – as I’ve recently added teeny-weeny Somerset village to my family origins, I’d probably be looking to get my hands on a CD of parish records if possible
Surrey History Centre
Yorkshire Ancestors (Stand 27–28) – Given that Yorkshire is probably my key research area, I’d be mad not to look at what they could offer me, in terms of materials to buy and what they have in their library.
The plan: Websites, to begin with. I should be making notes of what they have that might be of use, and following up by contacting them where necessary.

And my must-buys:
Books  - I can’t even begin to list the books I might buy, the possibilities are endless. I’d be picking up stuff that would be of use to my research, or just of general historical interest. Or indeed of genealogical research interest.
Family and Local History Handbook – This is one book I would definitely be buying. I bought the entire back catalogue last year, so I’d be looking to top up with new editions, including the newly launched Irish edition. I highly recommend it – see their website
Magazines – I would consider a subscription for the right magazine. Though I don’t really buy them at the moment, I do tend to scan them and occasionally buy if something appeals.  At the show I would definitely be scanning any available back issues for anything particularly useful and purchasing if so.
Storage solutions – I’d be looking for an inexpensive storage solution, but most importantly one that I felt would work, as I’m sure it’s quite a personal thing. (Anything has to be better than my current selection of falling apart folders and envelopes stuffed full of barely-organised paper!)
The plan:
Books are not an issue, I buy them constantly anyway. I should probably start taking more note of what I actually want in terms of specific books or general topics. I might order the FLH Handbook online in due course.
I am also going to start following the websites of some magazines and buy a few issues, and see if there is anything I would consider subscribing to long-term. More likely though I will just pick and mix, as one magazine is not always going to cover areas of interest.
Storage solutions require some consideration and research before I make an investment. However, it is a priority because my current system is untenable. Plus it will force me to sort through the paperwork and electronic files I already have, which will probably help my research.

Pop back shortly to find out about my WDYTYA Live fantasy workshop programme...

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