Hi WikiTreers,

Welcome to a new installment of “Meet our Members.” It’s time to get to know another awesome member of our community: Meet Kylie.

Kylie Haese became a WikiTreer in January of 2018.  She is quite active in our Australia Project and is also a Project Coordinator for the Global Cemeteries and German Roots projects.

What are some of the surnames you are researching?

Haese, Gorman, Bispham, Coppin, Digney, Dalton, McGuire, Trethewey, Trebbeck, Pinch, Thick, Burt, May, Frost, Girdler and Goodfellow to name a few.  

What are some of the locations you are researching?

A number of towns in the south west of Western Australia; South Australia; England (Cornwall, Isle of Wight, Berkshire); Ireland; Germany and Stettin, Pommern (Pomerania) Prussia, which is now considered Poland.

When and how did you get interested in genealogy and family history?

Oh this is multifaceted, and can be answered many different ways, but I will answer it as best I can. I have always been intrigued by my last name, and wondered who the first Haese in Australia was but never went past what my grandparents told me (which was very little). When I started university I was given an assignment of tracing my family tree back 5 generations. It was there I learned that I was at least 5th generation Western Australian on a few branches. This really piqued my interest, I found that fascinating, but didn’t have time to research.

It wasn’t until my grandmother passed away, and I realised I didn’t get to ask her all about her childhood, early life and regretted it. I didn’t want to have that same regret with my only other living grandparent (my maternal grandmother). So I started questioning my nanna to find out as much as I could. She seemed reluctant at first but enjoys remembering and telling me stories from her younger days now. And from there I started climbing all my branches. That’s pretty much how I got started and it just snowballed from there.

Who’s your favorite ancestor and why?

Hmmm I have many but the stand out is my 3 times great grandmother who came to Australia as a convict guard’s wife, and ended up running a successful boarding house and having two cottages she rented out after giving birth to 13 children. Her husband had rival businesses and then was trying to sell all their assets to take the money and return to England. Caroline ended up taking him to court to get a legal separation and child maintenance before he left, and was actually the first woman to successfully take her husband to court in West Australia and win. Quite an important figure in Australian Feminism! She celebrated afterwards by getting a family portrait taken of her and all her children and some extended family looking thoroughly pleased.

Tell us about a brick wall you were able to break down or one you hope to bust through.

I hope to one day find out who my migrating German ancestor Ferdinand Friedrich Haese’s parents were back in Prussia and what happened to them.

If you could pick one person in history to be related to, who would it be and why?

That’s a tough one but I would have to say Hypatia of Alexandria.

What are some of your interests outside of genealogy?

I have many interests. I read a lot of fiction, write poetry, watch documentaries. I like gardening, and music. I love to laugh, and I enjoy playing board games with my kids.

How long have you been on WikiTree and what do you spend the most time doing? If you’re  involved in a project(s), tell us about how you participate in it.

I think it was January 2018 that I discovered WikiTree, so about a year. I like the idea of categories, and often spend my time adding maintenance categories along with researching, cleaning up biographies and working on orphaned profiles. I actually really enjoy working on orphaned profiles and do it often. I also like to add cemetery categories to profiles. I don’t think a profile is complete until the cemetery they are interred in has been identified and added to their profile.  

I am involved in quite a few projects: Global Cemeteries, German Roots, Australia, and the One Name Studies.

I am Project Coordinator for the Oceania cemeteries team for Global Cemeteries . This was the first project I became an active participant of. I am quite passionate about making graves easily accessible to family researchers. I also recently was asked to be a Project Coordinator for the German Roots project. I have been active in the Australian Project since I started on WikiTree, and participate in many ways, but mainly adding to the Western Australian side of things. There wasn’t much when I started. In the global outreach project I am a member of genealogy in the media, adding profiles for people who are covered in the Australian series of Who Do You Think You Are. I help out the Gorman One Name Study by adding and sourcing Gormans who emigrated to or were pioneers of Western Australia. And I started the Haese one name study, in the hopes of breaking down my brick wall ancestor.   

What brought you to WikiTree? (In other words, how did you find us?)

I found other sites frustrating for multiple reasons but mainly due to them having multiple profiles for the same people and how inaccurate they all seemed to be. So I remember searching thoroughly through Google for alternative websites to use. I think it was a blog post about the top genealogy website suggestions that had a link to WikiTree. And it was a perfect match for me and my needs and wants.

What is your favorite thing about WikiTree, or which feature(s) do you like the most?

My favourite thing is one single profile for each person on one single global tree. It was a dream come true finding such a site! I also really like the Help Index pages. I regularly browse through them and learn something new or remind myself of something useful. Personal categories have been really helpful for me to keep track of my unsourced or project related profiles needing work also.

If you could improve one thing about WikiTree, what would it be?

I would make it a little bit less formal. The profiles we create are well sourced and generally accurate, unless proven otherwise. And with the changes tab to monitor the changes, I do not understand why communicating on the G2G forum or in the Facebook groups has to be so formal and strict. It would be nice to see a little more light heartedness.

Another thing I would like to see improve is social media use, I think social media would be a better way for project members to communicate. Google Groups and the G2G forum can be a little too strict in my opinion.

What is an example of how WikiTree has helped you with your genealogy or how you’ve helped genealogy with WikiTree?

WikiTree has helped me to slow down and make sure my information is correct and well sourced, and not add information while tired and without documenting sources. It means that my work is much more likely to be accurate and any mistakes are genuinely unintentional, as opposed to being tired and adding without assessing. Which I think is the cause of most genealogical mistakes.

And I think I have helped genealogy with WikiTree by creating a lot more content and presence for Western Australia. It really has been a neglected state without much activity. I hope to continue to change that.

Any tips for someone just starting out on WikiTree?

Take it slow. WikiTree is intimidating at first, but just walk away when it gets overwhelming, and don’t give up, because it will get easier and easier. Don’t be too worried about making a mistake, play around and experiment with a few profiles first (e.g. your own profile, and your parents etc). I don’t know how many times I edited certain profiles to get little formatting things correct. I would just keep trying and saving and trying and saving… until I finally discovered the preview button! There is a changes tab so everything is tracked and easily changed back if necessary. No need to be anxious about making mistakes.  

Don’t be shy, there are nice helpful people on WikiTree. And you will only find your preferences and what you enjoy by trying things. I joined many projects officially and unofficially, which helped me figure out what projects were suited to my skills and interests.

But most important of all is to have fun!

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  One Response to “Meet our Members: Kylie Haese”

  1. We are 16th cousins once removed.

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