NSW First Nations Family History
Tracing your family history and don't know where to start? Use this guide to find key family history resources for Aboriginal Australians.
Start researching your family history
Oral traditions in First Nations cultures are very strong so yarn with family members to gather as much information as you can before starting your family history journey.
Here is a template to record information about your family. Download the template
Records used in First Nations family history research can be found in many of the same places as other Australians. Please check the resources page to help you find records for your family history journey.
Indigenous Engagement are here to help
First Nations family history specialist staff are here to help wherever you are on your family history research journey.
The Library is a treasure trove of information relating to researching family history. Koori Kin and Indigenous Engagement Branch assists First Nations people to fill in the gaps in their family tree. Before you contact us, please have a family tree, research notes or any birth/ death/ marriage certificates of your family.
Please note the State Library is not able to provide Confirmation of Aboriginality or provide advice on genetic testing.
Find various resources ranging from government services to church records to help you start your family history journey.
You can find Aboriginal genealogies for people who lived in New South Wales in these books.
Meet the First Nations specialist staff
Melissa Jackson is a Bundjalung librarian. She specialises in language enquiries and material, cultural consultation and First Nations family history.
Kerry-Ann Tape is Ngiyampaa, and is a qualified librarian. She specialises in First Nations family history, Tindale genealogies, collection enquiries, transcription and supervised viewings.
Indigenous Engagement Branch
State Library of New South Wales
1 Shakespeare Place
Sydney NSW 2000
Penny Evans born Sydney in 1966, is a Gamilaroi artist living and working on Bundjalung country. Though primarily working in ceramics the artist describes her work as being underpinned by collage. Her Artists Books ‘Mapping Genealogy’, a variable edition of 5 books, have been made by collaging and stitching together by hand and with a sewing machine an array of images and materials pertaining to her mixed descent NSW family heritage. One of these Editions was acquired by the State Library in 2016 into the Mitchell Collection. ‘Proof’ another singular very dense artist book was created by the artist and collected by the State Library in 2017.