Our History

The Gisborne Genealogical Group is a voluntary group for people interested in researching family history.

We began in May 1991 as “Friends of the Gisborne Library Genealogy Group”, with a small number of keen researchers meeting in the Gisborne Library. The Library had already acquired some resources including fiche and readers, and had a number of customers interested in genealogy.

Foundational members of the Genealogical Group gave personal donations to establish the initial resources. The collection grew through further donations and also support from the Shire Council, particularly through access to Shire facilities and support from the librarian and staff of the Gisborne Library.


In 1993 the Group became incorporated and changed its name to  the “Gisborne Genealogical Group Inc.” It now officially owned its resources and membership numbers continued to grow.

In April 1999, the Group was given access to the Old Council Chambers adjoining the Library in Hamilton Street, Gisborne. This meant there was a large room with space for the resource collection and fiche readers, plus a room where monthly meetings could be held.


The Family History Room was named “The Marion Button Family History Collection”, in memory of Marion Button, a local professional genealogist, who spent many hours establishing the Group, encouraging members with their research, writing books and indexing records. Sadly, Marion died in 1998.