Gould Genealogy - our 48th year ... and still going




Gould Genealogy - our 48th year ... and still going

Small beginnings ... growth ... added genealogy services ... winding back

If you follow us through our newsletters and events you will be aware of changes in recent years - and 2023 in particular. After 48 years of offering a wide range of products and services, the time will come when Gould Genealogy will close altogether, at least as it has been known for 48 years.

Here is a little of our history - as well as what is being wound back and what continues.

Small beginnings
Gould Genealogy began in a small way in 1976 from the home of Alan and Anthea Phillips at Cudlee Creek in the Adelaide Hills, partnering with History House Bookshop in Melbourne initially. We initially sold at meetings of the SA Genealogy & Heraldry Society. Our first catalogue, a single folded brochure was published in May 1977. That same year we attended the first Australasian Congress in Melbourne, after which History House Bookshop finally closed, leaving us as the sole genealogy reseller in the country. In 1981 we moved to nearby Gumeracha where we have been based ever since, even when we later opened shops.

Our growth paralleled the rapid rise in family and local history and genealogy in the 1970s and 80s (prior to 1973 there were only three genealogy societies in Australia - based in Sydney, Melbourne and Canberra). Further interest was fuelled by the lead up to South Australia's sesquicentenary in 1986 and the Australian bicentenary of European settlement in 1988. In June 1978 we adopted the name Gould Books (after Gould family connections), changing this to Gould Genealogy & History in 2002.

Added genealogy services
From 1990 we added a number of related services under different brands, all under the Gould parent company.

  • Gould Genealogy & History (established 1976)
  • Gould Publishing Services (1990-1996) – book set up and print brokering for private publishers
  • Family Photo Book (2009-2015). A fun easy way to present photos and stories – family history, special events, holidays and more.
  • Archive Digital Books Australasia (2003)
    over 2000 old and rare books have been digitised and offered on CDs, ebook downloads and as USB collections
  • Gould Digital (2003) — digital printing, mainly for our own publications
  • Unlock the Past (2009) — over 150 unique events, 2010-2021, publishing etc.
  • Genealogy ebooks (2013) — 600 now available, with up to 1500 more planned for 2024-2025
  • Unlock the Past cruises (international) (2013–2020)
    17 genealogy conference cruises internationally 2010-2021, with a final ocean cruise coming in December 2024
  • Family History Down Under (2019-2022) - DNA Down Under, FHDU Down Under & FHDU Down Under Online events

At different times we have had physical shops (while still retaining our Gumeracha base) - at Tea Tree Gully (1990-1992 and again 2012-2023), North Adelaide (1992-1996) and Modbury 2002-2012. Apart from these and at some events we sold primarily from printed catalogues from 1977 to the early 2000s. Our website was set up in 1996. See the Wayback Machine archive of our 1996 website.

Scaling back
We have been scaling back some of our activities for a few years now, partly because of the changing genealogy scene, but to a large extent because it is just time. Time we slowed down and time for me (Alan) to pick up some of my own history/genealogy interests, which have taken a back seat for 35+ years. Here is our focus for the coming year.

  • Finished - Unlock the Past and Family History Down Under events
  • One last ocean cruise - 1-10 December 2024. Possibly a Murray River cruise the following year
  • Limited new publishing - digitising old records and book publishing has been scaled back over the last 5-10 years. It will continue on a small scale
  • Books - these will continue, however we are phasing out books from many suppliers. Our own publications and those from other select publishers will continue for now
  • Data CDs - most will be converted to ebook downloads (or USB for larger products/collections)
  • Ebooks - this is our key focus now. As noted 600 ebook download products are now available, with 1500 or more planned for 2024-2025

New o​​​​​pportunities for Gould customers
All this change will bring many opportunities in the coming year or two: 

  • The shift from CD data to ebooks makes hundreds of products available to those without a CD drive - immediately downloadable and at lower prices and no freight
  • Hundreds more CD seconds, at 60-80% off the regular CD price, added throughout 2024
  • Many more general clearance titles
    • ongoing stock reduction and clearance of out of print titles
    • new books and maps that have come our way over the last 40 years, which have never been listed in our online catalogue or haven't been for many years
    • used books that have come our way that we no longer wish to keep -  rare antiquarian books we have digitised and others from personal collections that are no longer required

Watch out and save every week during 2024 - and probably into 2025


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