Find out your Port Pirie family history at the library every Friday

HISTORY: Dianne Crocker, Louise Carmody, Graeme Williams, Daryl Johns, Erica Johnson, Malcolm Bottrall, Kevin Saltmarsh, Elizabeth Wright, Christeen Schoepf.
HISTORY: Dianne Crocker, Louise Carmody, Graeme Williams, Daryl Johns, Erica Johnson, Malcolm Bottrall, Kevin Saltmarsh, Elizabeth Wright, Christeen Schoepf.

Have you ever wondered where you come from? Have you ever wanted to know about the lives of your great great grandparents?

The Port Pirie District Family History Group help visitors find their roots at Port Pirie Regional Library every Friday from 1pm to 3pm.

The group, which has been operating for over 20 years, discusses points of Port Pirie's iconic history and can track down families and lost relatives.

Research officer, Kevin Saltmarsh said "if they worked at the smelters and they're buried in Pirie, then we can usually find that out."

The group uses Trove to find obituaries usually posted in older editions of The Recorder.

Mr Saltmarsh believes the group is more thorough than the internet sensation Ancestry.

If you visit the library on Fridays then you can snag some free history of your family as the group volunteers a lot of their time.

However, they do take on a lot of after hours clients which they charge $20 per hour.

The demand for family history is actually quite high.

"The best year we had 150 to 200 clients," Mr Saltmarsh said.

People usually want to find out if their parents or grandparents either went to school in Pirie or if they are buried here.

There is about 20 active members who donate their time and efforts to preserve and uncover the town's rich history.

Mr Saltmarsh said the Port Pirie cemetery was an interesting place to visit.

"There are a lot of people buried in the cemetery that a lot of people in Port Pirie don't know about."

"I can remember 3000 men walking out of the smelters on knock off when the siren went."

The group operates a cemetery walk where people can discover who is buried there.

Mr Saltmarsh believed it was important to preserve family history but he was afraid the practice was losing popularity to videogames and social media.

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