Digitizing My Family History

A picture isn’t worth a thousand words if you don’t have the context for interpreting the story behind the picture.

And you’re left with 100’s of family photos like I was when my grandfather died aged 98 in 2006.

Many were taken in 1920’s, some from late 1800’s and no one’s left that remembers all their stories.

Fortunately my grandfather was interested in the family ancestry since the 1930’s which left numerous documents and mementos as breadcrumbs!

I’ve embedded a Google photo of the Ockerby ancestry compiled by Rev Thomas Ockerby Hurst (my great-grandfather) in 1939 below so you can zoom in on the information easily.

And Hurst ancestry which I believe was compiled by my grandfather Charles Hurst.

Ockerby letter
Letter by my great-grandfather from 1908 announcing the birth of my grandfather.

The photos

I’ve started digitizing the photos to enable my relatives and others who are interested easy access.

You’ll find the photo’s digitized so far using the following links:

  1. Clarice Hurst’s photos 1920’s People 
  2. Clarice Hurst’s photos 1920’s Places
  3. Charles Hurst’s photos before 1930’s
  4. Charles Hurst’s photos after 1930’s

The Family History

I’ve also been researching and documenting my ancestry to piece together the stories behind the photos — to bring the stories back to life!

You’ll find Hill Family, Day Family and their Bridgetown, Western Australian history documented here.   I’m currently working on my Ockerby and Hurst family history.

I think I may also be luckier than most?

  1. Hill and Day ancestors – notable settlers in Bridgetown and other parts of Western Australia.
  2. Ockerby ancestors – notable settlers in Tasmania and some were prominent people in the early 1900’s in Western Australia.

They’ve featured in numerous historic newspaper articles which I’ve sourced via Trove (thanks to guidance from Sue Wyatt) and books:

  1. Featherstone and Mary Ockerby – Tasmanian Pioneers written by Kathy Wright (2004) – incredible work!
  2. Bridgetown the early years.  Book two, People of the Warren Blackwood District from 1950’s by Fran Taylor (2015) – includes a Chapter on the Hill family.
  3. Bridgetown the early years Book One by Fran Taylor (2014).  Doesn’t include the Hill family but provides invaluable insight into what life was like in the late 1890’s and early 1900’s.

And my mother, Janne, has been helping me identify as many people as she can while sharing the stories she can remember.

And Yet I Ponder

Will I be able to identify the story behind each picture?  Probably not!  But maybe by sharing them all online others will eventually help?

Maybe someone will see this photo online and one day tell me if these are Day or Hill relatives?

Mid 1920’s

Or someone from South Australia will tell me about Bentley House?

Bentley House, Mt Gambier South Australia 1924

Or someone could tell me if this document is really from 1862 and if I should be doing something more to preserve it?

Old Document

The journey, and questions, continues….

This post was written in response to Photos – #EdublogsClub Prompt 4.