It's time to meet another one of our wonderful WikiTreers! This week's member is Heather Stevens.
Heather became a Wiki Genealogist in August of 2019. She is a member of the Australian Convicts Team in the Australia Project.
What are some of the surnames you are researching?
Whipple, Hanks, Salvidge, Broom, Balcombe, Boshell, Tyne, Egan, Loud
What are some of the locations you are researching?
Most of my current research is in colonial New South Wales.
Recently I have been interested in Norfolk Island. Here are a few of the locations "further afield":
Stevens of East Molesley, Surrey, England.
Stephens of Mawgan in Meneage, Cornwall, England.
Palmer of Berrow, Somerset, England.
Griffin of Widworthy, Devon, England.
Blue of colonial New York.
When and how did you get interested in genealogy and family history?
Many years ago, my cousin paid a visit to my family and brought along a book about the history of Annangrove and Kenthurst, which used to be orchard growing areas on the outskirts of the greater Sydney area. The book had some of the history of my Stevens family, but what really fascinated me was the revelation that we had convict ancestors. That motivated me to learn more about the history of convict transportation to Australia and to construct my own family tree.
Who's your favorite ancestor and why?
John Ramsay, first fleeter, who tried so hard to overcome adversity but had some bad luck. He even made an attempt, with two friends, to find a way across the Blue Mountains, which in the early days was an impenetrable barrier to the west of the early colony.
Tell us about a brick wall you were able to break down.
One brick wall was proving my descent from John Ramsay. I knew from indirect evidence that he was probably my ancestor, so I was very happy to find genetic cousins on AncestryDNA.
What are some of your interests outside of genealogy?
Walking, keeping fit, taking photographs for Monument Australia and Find a Grave. All very difficult now that Sydney is in lockdown (July and August 2021). Luckily, I live near beautiful Sydney Harbour, so I can go on harbourside bushwalks.
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