Calling all Australia Project Members - what project activities are you currently working on?

+10 votes

We would love to hear from all our members about their current activities on behalf of the project.  Are there specific areas of interest for you?  Do you need more people to help you on specific tasks?  

As project leaders, we have been working on the restructure.  It's progressing but much of the activity has been behind the scenes. This is the first of series of updates from us about our progress.

Have you seen the changes to Australian Project Boxes?

As you may be aware Wikitree changed its project box guidelines some time ago and the Australia Project has been a bit slow in implementing the required changes.  Wikitree guidelines for project management are here:

As part of the new restructure we have made reviewing project boxes and profiles managed by ‘Australia Project Wikitree’ one of our first focus areas.

The ‘Australia’ project manages sub projects and a number of different topics.  Whilst it would have been ideal to have one project box for all profiles managed by the Australia Project, given the diversity in our history we are implementing three project boxes that will be placed on profiles meeting the criteria to be project managed or project protected. 

  • Indigenous Australians

  • Colonial Australia 1788-1900; and 

  • Australia 1901 - date

Many existing profiles have older project boxes, but they don’t meet the guidelines for PMP or PPP profiles.  These project boxes are being replaced with stickers.  You will see these being progressively rolled out as the stickers are developed.  The current list of stickers is available here  Many of these will be implemented automatically but you are free to add these to your own profiles too.  This work is not yet finalised and will be the subject of a further post when the process is complete.

The Project boxes only go on profiles managed by the Australia Project, like this one - All other profiles will need to remove the project box and can have stickers instead.

If you know of any profiles you consider should be managed by the project, there will be a form available soon.  Vivienne Caldwell will be co-ordinating this process on behalf of the Project.  

Team Membership

Moving forward everyone should have the Australia project badge (as our other badges are being retired).   If you belong to the Indigenous Australians Project, it is an option to have the First Peoples project badge.  If you don’t yet have an Australia project badge please go to the project page and click on the link to our G2G welcome post and request to join.  

We understand many of our members would like to indicate that they are working on a specific subject area for the Australia Project.  To fill the gap we have developed some stickers that members might like to use (this is entirely optional of course):

  • Indigenous Australians Project Members

  • Australian Convicts Project Members

  • Earl Grey Orphan Scheme Project Members (this already existed - but the template has been changed).

You can find the new template here -

We also expect to establish new teams based around topics very soon.  We are awaiting some Wikitree policy decisions regarding project management before finalising our topics and teams, but we expect that to happen quite soon.

Looking forward to seeing all your comments.


Veronica and Gillian

Australia Project Leaders

asked in The Tree House by Veronica Williams G2G6 Pilot (116k points)
edited by Veronica Williams

I am still adding Bushrangers it would be nice if we had most of them added  to Wikitree. A lot (not all) of the Bushrangers were Convict Bolters I think it's a important time in Australia's history. Plus I am adding and changing the project sticker

Here are a some of the profiles/free space pages I added

Jimmy Governor and his Brother Joe also a Bushranger
Kenniff Brothers
Convict Bolters
Wild Colonial Boys

The trouble I am having with these profiles is finding family some you just can not find.I find Trove newspapers a great resource with these profiles

Thanks Terry - it's good to see more work being done on the Bushrangers.  There are probably some key ones that should be project protected I would think too.  Are there any you might suggest?  

I did notice that many of them aren't connected.  Hopefully once we get our profile improvement teams going we might have our own 'connectors' to work on them.

Veronica Ben Hall Ned Kelly Frank Gardiner all have the Australia Project as managers and the sticker but are not PPP. We decided to remove that while the project worked out which profiles should be protected under the Australia project. I don't think the lesser known Bushrangers need PPP. Yes there are a lot of Bushrangers not connected it would be great if  that could be changed. 

Adding sources to try to keep the ever growing number of unsourced profiles down.

Trying to find enough information on the 300-plus Orphan breeders sent to Van Diemen's Land in 1851 to qualify them for something official.  (They were not part of the Earl Grey Orphan Scheme, which ended in 1850, where the girls were all mainland bound.)  Mostly from County Clare work/poor houses, but some dozen or so came from Portsea Island, Hampshire.

Thanks Mel.  I previously added your orphans to the list of possible topics on the Project page.  It’s only for the sticker you need to get more profiles.  Perhaps when we get a Tassie team together you can get help to work on all the group!
I've started listing the girls on a free space page, if only to get them straight in my head.  I've tried to do it up as though it were an official profile-type page .. basic "story", the ships, the girls.

I spent at least two days going over and over the list on Tassie Gov't's BDM just so I wasn't relying on someone else's work (and he got some wrong, so I'm glad I did it .. and he abbreviated the names in a way that seemed inconsistent .. but I'm still glad I found his pages on Clare Library's site).  I may yet go over the main lists again, just to be sure I have my names all straight.  Then back to the employment section/s trying to decipher the handwriting to see where the Girls were to go and with whom.

The Beulah is the more difficult of the two ships, because that log doesn't put the girls in workhouse groups as the Calcutta did.

Then there is that the girls are frequently one name on the main list and another on the employment agreement pages (Biddy/Bridget).


I am still at two profiles made, with enough, I believe, information for another two (one of which is for Portsea, not Co. Clare).  I messed up on one, though.  I was gathering the information and then realised she was NOT on of the Orphan girls, but was under the "other" section, even though travelling on her own at age 16 or 18.  So, she's not getting added to "my" Girls.

So sad, some of them.  I have at least one who didn't get a "better life" Down Under, as she is listed as having died in 1852.  :(
One other thing I've been working on .. as I find them, anyway .. is adding profiles for those who served.  I have a passion for honouring their service.  I don't care if we, today, agree with the idea of war, or wars for ideals, or whatever, these (mainly males) guys did what they thought was the right thing to do, and so many of them paid the "ultimate price": their life.  They should be remembered.

Also babies/small children being forgotten about because only the living are "important" enough for profiles leaves the others "out in the cold"; whereas adding them helps show the family relationships better, where a gap might otherwise be.  (And for twins, where one lived and the other died in infancy.  That info could really matter to someone.)  I'll add profiles for them, too.

(I think that's all I've been working on.)

I have completed (as best I can with the limited information I can access) '''four''' profiles (two from each ship).

Bridget Corbett (Calcutta); Mary Looney (Beula), Catherine Keogh (Calcutta); Susan Halleybone (Beula).

(edited to fix links)

Veronica you ask if any Bushrangers need PPP John Caesar I think does.He has the Australia Project as manager but he is not PPP. He came to Australia on the First Fleet, he was the first negro to come to Australia and he was Australia's first ever Busgranger so a lot of firsts :)

Thanks Terry for the message above!

We have had some feedback about the project boxes and the stickers. In the light of that feedback we are changing the name of the 'Colonial Australia 1788-1900' Project Box to 'Pre-Federation, 1788-1900' and the 'Australia 1901 - date' Project to 'Post-Federation, 1901 - current'. Also we have had some feedback about the 'Mariners' stickers, and the colonial flag image. We will follow this up when we can. We are really happy to receive any other feedback on this thread, or on the Australia project google group. Thanks everyone.

Sorry should have answered and not replied

I'm on the Australian Cemeteries Team for now. I've nearly completed uploading headstone photos for Hallett Cemetery SA & a few to go on the 50 or so I had for Broken Hill Cemetery NSW then I'll be done with that. 

My main interest is ANZAC's involvement in Military Conflicts. I have just yesterday started adding Indigenous Australians who served in the Australian Military Forces (1 so far) but need to do further work on his Biography & add Family connections & primary sources etc. [ Roland Carter]. The next one I plan to do, after the busyness of Easter is over is the only known Indigenous man to serve in the Boar War. There is a list of [ Indigenous Soldiers on Gallipolli] if anyone else is interested in adding some feel free.  

I have created a Space page to keep track of those I add but I'm not part of a project. It's just what I like to do. The Space Page is only linked the the Profile/s as a Reference & not a Category at the moment, but I have added the Indigenous Australian Sticker on Roland Carter's Bio. If it is acceptable I would be happy for the Space Page to be linked to the Indigenous Australians Projest so that if anyone else adds a Profile they would be linked to the Page. 
[ Free Space: Indigenous Australians in the Australian Defence Forces]

I don't use Google Groups as I find them terribly frustrating & the constant emails send me "round the twist" :) but I'm happy to use g2g & the WikiTree Facebook Groups. Especially the FC groups, which are much more interactive  & conversational.

Thanks, Eileen

11 Answers

+3 votes

Hi Veronica

My 'passion' is trying to maintain the integrity of the 'one world tree'.  To this end the bulk of my efforts of late have been on Suggestions for the Australia Project, or the more general Suggestions for Australia.  I know that the latter isn't strictly an 'Australian' project but it does fit neatly with what I also do as a Data Doctor and, frankly, there seems to be much more useful work to be done there, particularly with duplicates and issues appearing every week.

Apart from that, I have also been doing a bit of work on 20th Century notable 'black sheep' in Australia.  Individuals there include 1920's underworld figures and rivals Kate Leigh (Catherine Mary Josephine (Beahan) Ryan) and Tilly Devine (Matilda Mary (Twiss) Parsons).

As I have some distant cousins of Chinese ancestry, I've also been interested in improving the profiles of a number of early immigrants from outside the United Kingdom.  This has me creating/ looking into the profiles of:

  • 麥世鹏 (Sai Ying (Mak) Shying) understood to be the first Chinese immigrant to Australia.  I am also collaborating with some other users who know the family and who are currently awaiting DNA test results to refute/ validate some possible relationships
  • Jean (Lehimas de Arrieta) d'Arrieta, a Spanish collaborator with England during the Anglo-Spanish War of 1796–1808, who seems to have been rewarded with land in NSW.  Unfortunately his profile, and many others, are currently duplicated or triplicated so there are some challenges in sorting all that out.

I currently haven't classified this latter group as 'Notable' but I guess they could be so-considered.

I previously did a bit of work re-categorising all of the profiles with Norfolk Island connections.  That work is all largely completed now though.

What I see a lot of, and I think I and others could use some help with, is appropriate DNA confirmations.  I have done my own, but not confidently, but it seems to me that this could be an important task, including for profiles currently managed by the Project (Missing mothers DNA confirmationMissing fathers DNA confirmation)

answered by Peter Jones G2G6 Mach 1 (13.7k points)
edited by Peter Jones

Thanks Peter that's great to know.  

I agree with you about the DD reports and the report is listed under our project page and on (this page is a bit out of date though).  Hopefully when we get the proposed profile improvement teams happening we can get a more concentrated focus on them.

Your two profiles sound as if they could be suitable candidates for project protection as well as notables.  Maybe talk to Vivienne about them.

My passion is DNA, I also co-ordinate the SAG DNA Research Group if you are in Sydney and can make our meetings which are held quarterly.  I have been slowly working on the Wikitree-37 DD errors for DNA (they are not straightforward when you are out past 3rd cousins).  I am also very keen to get more happening with my suggestion (a couple of years ago now) for the DNA project for confirmation on our convicts and early settlers.  I am always happy to give others advice and help interpreting their results.  Once we get the restructure sorted this is one of the areas I plan to concentrate on for our project.  Send me a PM if you have anything in particular you would like me to look at for you.

+5 votes
I'm working (on & off) on profiles for those who died on Montevideo Maru in 1942 - which not strictly an Australia project, the bulk of them are Australian profiles - unsurprisingly, a lot of the Australian civilians who were over 40 also served in the AIF in WW1 and after WW1 as part of the Australian Naval & Military Expedition Force to the Territory of New Guinea.

At some stage I'd like to work on Australian Munitions Workers & War Workers in WW1 - This was a joint Australian-British scheme to recruit skilled (& later unskilled) workers to work under contract in UK. The scheme was later retrospectively extended to skilled workers who contracted directly to large firms like Vickers.
answered by Mark Rogers G2G3 (3.3k points)
Sounds fascinating Mark.  It’s one of the things I love about genealogy, you learn something new every day!
+4 votes

Am continuing with the Australian Army Generals, Veronica.  All 180-odd generals who are deceased have profiles, with reasonable biographies.  Most include immediate family members but some more work could yet be done.  The big 'hold-up' is connecting them to the Tree.  Almost all First World War generals are connected but there are still several Second World War generals unconnected.

Another area I'm excited about is ensuring that our Victoria Cross recipients all have biographied (is that a word?) and connected profiles.  John Andrewartha has a project that requires linking our VC'ers to.  Found a Second World War VC recipient last night, Charles Anderson. Have now built his family back several generations and discovered that his sister was killed as a young aviatrix in the 1920s.

In fact, Categories: Orders, Decorations and Medals of Australia has had a clean-up and should also be easier to navigate.

Australians of the Year are clearly Notables.  Probably only about half of the deceased folk have WikiTree profiles.  So some help would be appreciated there.

The Australian Army Categories have had a good revamping and should now be much easier to locate and use.  Probably the biggest change has been the additional of Category: Australian Army Units, World War I and Category: Australian Army Units, World War II.  If in doubt as to where to place units from either of the World Wars, jus slip them into one of these and they can be sorted later.  Members will see distinct formats for units.  Haven't got into Navy or Air Force yet, but somebody with better knowledge than me may want to tackle them.  As the RAN has reused ship names so often may I suggest that HMAS ships include the name and commissioning year to differentiate.  The RAN does have a numbering system but we would need to be sailors to understand it.

In my 'spare time' I'm working on some convict additions.

Regards, Ken

answered by Kenneth Evans G2G6 Mach 3 (32.5k points)
edited by Kenneth Evans
Thanks for all your great work Ken! Good to know about the category change and that all the VC’s are connected.  

We have a lot of ‘floating’ profiles out there, not sure how we identify them except through our own ‘unconnected watchlists’
+5 votes

I'm working on the Australian Suggestion Report - this week cleaning up Suggestions relating to References

answered by Diane Darcy G2G6 Mach 1 (14.9k points)
Thanks Diane - lots to do there I know!!!
+5 votes
Hi Veronica and Gillian

I am Project Co-ordinator for ''Earl Grey's Famine Orphan Scheme 1848-1850'' - I am currently reviewing this sub-project's resources (space pages, category structure etc) and working on setting up task lists/process guidelines/milestone tracking to make it easier for others to participate. I intend to hold off on implementation while the categorization for the Australia Project, Shipping and Migration streams are being reviewed.

I  also focus on Australian content as my contribution to several wider WikiTree teams (Profile Improvement, Sourcerer, Data Doctor, Categorization etc).

The bulk of my personal WikiTree-ing also has an Australian focus since all of my ancestral lines arrived here (and stayed) many generations ago.
answered by John Rosser G2G6 (6.7k points)
Thanks John for everything you are doing for our Earl Grey Orphans!  I have several I still need to add, so much to do, so little time....
+6 votes
I work on the Data Doctor Australian Suggestion list, I'm hoping our team can put a dent in the list in the Clean-a-thon!

As part of the Categorisation project, i'm adding content to empty Australian place name categories, specifically by adding the Location CIB, and adding the Cemetery CIB to Australian cemeteries that don't have it. I've started with New South Wales places and cemeteries.
answered by Margaret Haining G2G6 Mach 1 (15.2k points)
Sounds great Margaret, thanks.  I’m planning to join you in the Clean a Thon, internet permitting, currently in Egypt!
Thank you Margaret! That is fantastic to hear. I too am working on adding CIB's to cemetery categories and boy it is a daunting job, so I am glad to hear you are working on this too :)

I didnt know about the location CIB's, but I may add that to my to-do list for West Aus place name categories. :)

Hi Kylie, yes I started doing location CIB's to empty (no content) place categories with the Cat project, then started adding cemetery ones as i found them, I think the CIB's look good on the categories, more streamlined and uniform. Gradually working through NSW then other states. Have done locations in NT & ACT, & ACT cemeteries (all 4) have CIB's. The cemetery errors team in the Cat project is also adding CIB's to empty cemeteries.

Glad to help in a small way. smiley

+6 votes

Hi Veronica and Gillian,

One of the best part about Wikitree is that I can flit around from project to project, depending on my current passing fancy. I bounce between working on Australian cemeteries (as you know I am the team leader for NSW Cemeteries), convicts (a hot favourite of mine), sourcing, connecting, merging, and working on other error suggestions. I also sometimes get into a profile-creation mode and add lots of (unrelated to me) profiles, because sometimes I think Australians are neglected on Wikitree*, and every Australian deserves a profile.

So nothing specific, as I am a generalist by nature. 

* Guessing this is reflective of the relatively small number of Australians on Wikitree.

answered by Jessica Manners G2G6 Mach 1 (16.6k points)

Hi Jessica, maybe you would be the one to ask about this question?  smiley

Yes Jessica, that’s the wonderful thing about Wikitree.  Endless variety depending on your mood!  I’m a bit of a flitter too, depends what captures my attention on the day. Hope to see you in the clean a Thon too, I know you are usually a dedicated and highly valued contributor!
Margaret - I have responded :)

Veronica - I'm all signed up ready to go for the Clean-a-thon this year. I skipped last year's as I was 9 months pregnant at the time and on labour watch suffering from the issues of late pregnancy ;)
+5 votes
With Andrew Hunter's help I have a free space project Brassil-22 Nuns in Australia. Andrew has been setting up convents derived from Trove articles whereas I have been creating individual profiles for  women who became nuns in Australia.  I have been working through St Bede's list.  At times I have had the opportunity to create profiles for their families.
answered by Rionne Brooks G2G6 Mach 4 (40.8k points)
Hi Rionne, that's a great topic. I saw mention of it on the Facebook page. Excellent to hear about you and Andrew Hunter working together. Thanks!
+5 votes
Hi Veronica,

I work on profiles from mainly WA and SA. I have a strong interest in both WA and SA but mainly WA. I would like to work more on pensioner guards and warders and their families that came to WA on the convict ships. That is a huge task and would need more members working on that too. I have started by creating free space pages for convict ships relevent to my ancestors, and adding a table for convicts and another for the guards and warders and family that came on board.

I worked with another member recently to get Roberta Jull added to wikitree. She was the first female medical doctor in WA, and had her own practice. She is an important female historical figure in my local area aswell.

I also created a page to store historical relevent images of West Aus, for use by anyone. Which will be great for when the Western Australia team gets up and running.

I am always working on something to do with Australia and therefore the Australia Project.
answered by Kylie Haese G2G6 Mach 1 (17.8k points)
Fantastic, Kylie. Thank you so much. That is such valuable work, and brilliant to have you focusing on WA and SA. I'll look forward to checking out Roberta Jull's profile.
Thanks Gillian :)
+3 votes
My dream has come true. I've found a WikiTreer in New Zealand who shares my enthusiasm for whalers and whaling and we're going to team up in a cross-borders project to take care of 19th century whalers in the waters of Oceania, which takes in both Australia and New Zealand. Our aim is to identify whalers according to the waters they frequented rather than their home countries. This is more appropriate to their lifestyle, where they really covered a lot of territory but were rarely in their native countries. I'm very excited.
answered ago by Anne Tichborne G2G6 Mach 3 (34.4k points)
+2 votes


I'm tend to flit between
picking a name from the error list of unconnected people to work on (AU pg); 
The Green and Gold Cook Book ladies:
Who Do You Think You Are AU; 
and whatever else I see needs doing.

Future project for me
Some of my ancestors arrived on the ship Medway in 1849. Turns out there were cousins also on the same ship so I'm think of blitzing the ship's list and adding all to the tree - A lot of them seem to have come from the same area.
There is no current listing for this ship and I don't know how to add it. Unfortunately I have a growing list of ships not included as yet so something else to do. (I have posted some on G2G but to no avail)

I also discovered one of the local churches in my area has a War memorial inside the church. If I can get access I would like to add these men and their families to the tree. I think they should be remembered.

I have a list of things to do and pick something different now and then.

If I think I can help I volunteer

answered ago by Amanda Myers G2G1 (1.5k points)
edited ago by Amanda Myers

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