Help finding lost ones can be found at library, society, web

FIND A FRIEND: Janie Steer uses the new digital microfilm scanner to find a long-lost friend.
FIND A FRIEND: Janie Steer uses the new digital microfilm scanner to find a long-lost friend. Mike Richards GLAMICR

WITH the number of family history websites, records and social media available, finding a long-lost relative or friend should be easy.

But Gladstone regional librarian Fran Moroney said unless the search was historical, finding someone with whom you had lost contact could be difficult.

"It is actually harder to find someone who's recent, especially in Gladstone where people move around a lot," she said.

To initiate a search Ms Moroney suggested looking up that person's name in the White Pages online.

However, she said with people relying so much on mobile phones, they might not always be listed.

If those options did not work, Ms Moroney said the library had several services to help people with their search.

"We have a library login to ancestry.com on the public computers and copies of The Observer, from when it was first published, on micro-film," she said.

"We do have files on groups in the town. If they were a part of a sporting club, you would look at their records."

She said the registry of births, deaths and marriages could also be accessed online, however, date blocks are placed on the records to protect people's privacy.

Birth records are only accessible after 100 years, marriages after 75 and deaths after 30 years.

Genealogy Society Gladstone president Geoffrey Honan said although the group mainly researched family histories, some of the techniques could be applied to a 'live' search.

"We use everything possible - computer programs that list people; census records; births, deaths and marriages; and we've got locals who can help, people who have lived in Gladstone all their lives," he said.

For help with a search, contact the library on 4970 0700 or the Genealogy Society on 0474 081 118 during opening hours.