Sunday, June 19, 2011

Cassie Mercer

Sitting behind a trade table at an Unlock the Past event last year in Sydney I found Cassie Mercer selling subscriptions to her newly launched magazine "Inside History". I immediately subscribed to the mag and have not been disappointed with that decision. I love finding  in my letterbox the latest edition of this snappily designed publication  that has content of great interest to Australian genealogists.

Thanks, Cassie, for submitting your profile to GeniMates, our readers will be fascinated by your colourful ancestors. I'd like to read more about them.

Date  11th June, 2011
Name  Cassie Mercer
Hometown  Sydney

Are you a Hobbyist or Professional Genealogist?  Hobbyist

What is your day job?  Editor of Inside History magazine

How long have you been chasing ancestors?  Since 1998

How did you get hooked on genealogy?  I was well and truly hooked when my mum told me that one of our Irish ancestors, Edward Turley, was a highwayman in Dublin. His grandson was Harry Readford, aka Captain Starlight, who became notorious in outback Australia for his highway-thieving antics as well.

What are your areas of Expertise in Genealogy?  I hope my expertise lies in being able to write and edit people's research and help them craft their family history into a terrific story. I co-founded Irish Wattle, which publishes books on Irish convicts, and have edited six books to date (see

Since 2010 I have edited and co-published Inside History magazine, which is a bi-monthly magazine focused on genealogy, history and heritage in Australia and New Zealand (see

Please outline your involvement in Genealogy Societies and Groups. I regularly liaise with family history and local history societies around Australia and New Zealand as part of my work for Inside History magazine. We are about to launch a new section in the magazine where we will profile a society in each issue, so it's exciting to hear about what records a society holds, and the events they are planning.

What are the lands of your ancestors?  Ireland, Scotland, England, Denmark

What Family Names are you Researching?  Turley, Maher, Gullidge, Sweatman, Perry, Futcher, Battle

Who is your favourite ancestor? Why?  I can't go past my g.g.g.g.g grandmother, Jane Maher, because she showed to me that she was pretty savvy and resilient. In Dublin she ran a brothel, then when she was transported for receiving stolen goods, she managed to survive the journey to Sydney on one of the most brutal convict ships of the 1790s, the Britannia. Once in Sydney she applied for and was granted a baker's licence at the Rocks, and ran it for a number of years.

What ancestral city or town would you like to visit? Why?  I've never been to Denmark, and I would like to visit to find out more about my family tree on my paternal grandmother's side

What is your favourite resource for genealogy?  Irish newspapers published in the late 1790s. They've been a goldmine for our Irish research.

Do you keep your genealogy files on paper?  Yes
Do you keep your genealogy files on a computer?  Yes

What genealogy software do you use to record your family tree?  I don't use any at the moment, but I am investigating options!

Do you have your tree posted on the internet? No

What Social Networking Sites do you use for genealogy?  Ancestry, Facebook, Genes Reunited, LinkedIn, Twitter

Do you have a blog?  Yes

What are your blogs' URLs?

What are your Other Hobbies, Activities, Interests?  Travelling as much as we can, growing new business ideas.

What is your favourite lesiure time activity apart from genealogy?  Window shopping on, browsing magazines for design inspiration and sleeping!

What is your favourite (non genealogy) book? Possession by A.S. Byatt

What is your personal philosophy in a few  words ?  Where there's a will, there's a way.

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