Lifting the fog on Southland's family history
Family history is the topic for the third week of Southland Heritage month, with genealogy-themed events running throughout the week.
For Southlanders looking to dig into their past, Southland Education are hosting "Where do I come from?" on Tuesday.
In the seminar, Invercargill City Councillor Rebecca Amundsen will present an introduction for people who are looking to delve into their past and find their long-lost ancestors, making use of both local and international websites and family tree programmes.
On Wednesday night, the Invercargill City Library is co-hosting a meeting with the Southland Genealogical Society and the Archives and Records Association of New Zealand.
Rather than helping people start building their family tree, the meeting is for those who are looking to pass on their research to an archive or heritage institution.
Library archivist Rebecca Smith said while the library archives had a wealth of information for people looking into their own family history, they were always looking to expand their database.
Smith said that along with their archives of election rolls, directories, newspapers, and birth deaths and marriages indexes, family histories also had the potential to add valuable information for further research.
The big issue, however, was adding research and artefacts to the archives that helped shed light on the history of the region.
"The point of Wednesday night is to sort out what is relevant to Southland as a whole.
"We love to have material about people, but it has to be important to Southland."
Smith said for people donating research to the archives, presentation was almost as important as the content itself.
"We are interested in collecting information from people's families, but which is easy and useful for people to see.
"Without proper context, artefacts lose their value over time.
"It could be brilliant information, but if it's not put together in a way which makes sense to people, no-one will really make use of it."