Saturday, 26 July 2008


Celia Baylis did her genealogy for five years manually -- 34 publications in total.
Bob Saunders spent many hours scanning hundreds of pages of her work.
Now it is available on five CD’s.
It is a most commendable genealogy work,
now in the library of the West Gauteng Branch, GSSA.
Here is the story.

Celia writes: “It was my lucky day when Lucas Rinken, the chairman, invited me to take part in the Hobby-X Fair at the Dome in Johannesburg and assist at our GSSA stand there a couple of months ago.

The easiest way for me to explain what genealogy is about is for me to show a hand-written Family Tree in the old fashioned format, and to this end I took along one of my booklets. Little did I think the booklet would spark so much interest?

Lucas then invited me to do a presentation at the AGM, and I took along several of the family booklets that I had compiled and displayed them for the members to look at.

What a compliment it was when Lucas asked if I would leave copies with the West Gauteng branch, as my departure for retirement in Cape Town was imminent.

Bob Saunders, the vice-chairman, then offered to scan the booklets and put them onto CD’s, provided I agreed to a copy being left with the West Gauteng Branch under his supervision.

And so it has come about that Bob Saunders has produced the most remarkable set of CD’s which contain the information of my family tree. He has, at his own cost, produced 5 CD’s and will remain custodian of them for the West Rand Branch of the GSSA.

Bob will keep a register of any copies which may be sold to members of the West Rand Branch, as well as members of my family.

The final result of this set of electronic copies of my work is outstanding. I am truly indebted to Bob for the expertise, time and care he has put into these reproductions. To say that I am delighted would be an understatement, and the fact that my work will be preserved in this way is a great joy to me and will be to my family in time to come.

I very much regret that I will be unable to be present when Bob hands over a set to the West Rand Branch on 19 June, 2008.

Bob (left) writes: “As you and all our genealogical colleagues will know only too well, the work is never complete, no matter how extensive it may be. Be that as it may, we have compiled into a compendium of five CD's, a total of no less than 34 individual publications produced by Celia over the past five years.

Of course the research and collection of the content spans a far greater time period, and is a magnificent collection personal history, memories, personal research and artifacts lovingly crafted into tangible presentable format as a record for her greater family's benefit.

The benefit has been extended to our branch through me as the custodian and originator of the digital format of her work, which although not copyrighted per se, the copyright of the work is to be guarded as best we can.

Celia’s work illustrates the point of "doing it manually" to great effect.

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