After writing about my grandmother’s brother with the trigger word of ” sister”, it seemed appropriate to look at her only sister Ethel Edith Chisholm.
My mother remembered that the two sisters did not get on and she recalled having no contact with her aunt after they left Brisbane to live in Sydney. Once again I turned to the “Chisholm Cameos” written by Audrey Barney to find some clues to her life.
To read more about her click here
With the trigger word of ” brother”, it reminded me of my grandmother’s “missing” brother. I think it most likely that the connection was severed when her brother became a Baptist minister.
My grandmother, Hazel Annie Chisholm, had separated from her husband after less than two years of marriage. She began a relationship with a Catholic who was the love of her life and my grandfather. When she sent her daughter to the local Catholic school I imagine that this would have been the final straw for Albert who had wholeheartedly become a Baptist. This would have meant strong opposition to divorce and the holding of anti-catholic/papist sentiments.
Thanks to his granddaughter, Robyn Rayner and the Chisholm family researcher, Audrey Barney, it is now possible to share his story. To read more about him click here
My early attempts to trace my ancestors was a pen and paper effort, not only was it difficult but also frustrating. Today it is so much easier with the internet. So many records and documents are easily accessible especially those related to Australia.
Searching for family history has become big business but for all that, some may complain about the cost of Ancestry or similar genealogical sites, it has really revolutionised the process of maintaining a tree and searching records and connections.
It’s great to have so many tools available at my fingertips – but I also relish the times when I leave the screen and keyboard behind. There is nothing like a trip to an old cemetery, or browsing through the original records at the State Archives but best of all are the opportunities to meet up with a newly discovered relation to share information. Easiest of all is when one of them has already done loads of research, like Audrey Barney, my New Zealand Chisholm cousin, who has researched and published a book on this line of the family.
For me, it is a perfect retirement hobby and the use of technology has made it so much more accessible. There is one glitch though. Secrets about the past are an emotional and psychological inheritance, passed on across the generations, and I can feel the effects of it even in my own life. I am also aware that some of my ancestors would be turning in their graves to think that all of the family secrets are now available for anyone to see. What was once a family secret and kept hidden for years if not centuries is now regarded as an incredible find and celebrated! Times have certainly changed.