Family History Fairs or Expos are held yearly by local and country Family History Societies. They are a chance to bring together family history groups within their areas and others, like ourselves, that are themed based.
Fellowship members have been attending History Fairs for many years; in the early days towing a converted plumbers’ trailer that held a three sided framed canvas demonstration tent, tables and display materials. Depending on the event members would set up stocks and a whipping frame that attracted many people, particularly the stocks as people could be transported back to a time of punishment. Photographs were not invented then! The Ballarat Central Highlands Fair was originally held in the old Army Drill Hall and the tent together with members in costume was set up in the hall. Over two days, we always drew a good crowd.
Australia Day Melbourne, in high summer temperatures, the tent overflowed with people, particularly in Swanston Street then the venue was changed to the Melbourne’s gardens. Twice it had use on the Sullivan Bay beach Sorrento for commemorations to Victoria’s first settlement in 1803. Times have changed and now our trailer is now longer needed with these kinds of events.
However, members still attend the Ballarat, Bendigo and Maryborough History Fairs and accept invitations for the special one off event, setting up in an area specially set aside the Fellowship.
For people tracing forebears in country areas Family History Fairs are a good place to start and a place to meet up with other First Fleeters.
First Fleet Fellowship Rugby Jumpers ( as worn above) are available by clicking here
© First Fleet Fellowship Victoria Inc 2011