Genealogy Giants: Comparing the Four Major Websites

“Which genealogy website should I use?” It’s one of the most-asked questions in genealogy — and this quick reference guide answers it!

Use this jammed-packed cheat sheet to quickly and easily compare all of the most important features of the four biggest international genealogy websites: Ancestry.com, FamilySearch.org, Findmypast.com and MyHeritage.com. Then consult it every time your research budget, needs or goals change. Tables, bulleted lists and graphics make this guide as easy to use as it is informative.

Family Roots Publishing purchased a large quantity of these guides, and is making them available at 15% off for Christmas 2017. The sale runs through December 25, 2017. Click on this link to order.

This comprehensive quick reference guide explains:

  • How knowing about all four websites can improve your family history research
  • How the sites stack up when it comes to the numbers of historical records, names in trees, DNA profiles, site users, site languages and subscription costs
  • Unique strengths of each website and cautions for using each
  • What to keep in mind as you evaluate record content between sites
  • Geographic record strengths: A unique table has an at-a-glance comparison for 30+ countries
  • How to see what kinds of records are on each site without subscribing
  • How family trees are structured differently at these websites — and why it matters
  • Privacy, collaboration and security options at each site
  • How DNA testing features differ at the two websites that offer it
  • What you can do with free guest accounts at each website
  • Subscription and free access options

Click on the following link to order:
Genealogy Giants: Comparing the 4 Major Websites QuickGuide, by Sunny Morton; Editor: Lisa Louise Cooke; 8.5×11; 4 pp, 10 mil, tear resistant, water resistant synthetic – folded; 2017; QuickGuide; Item #: Lu27

Sunny Morton is a genealogy writer whose work is read by thousands in magazines and online. As a Contributing Editor at Lisa Louise Cooke’s Genealogy Gems, she frequently posts on the news, but also loves to share quick research tips, reveal little-known resources or take genealogists for an exhilarating dive into deeper research topics and techniques. She’s also the author of My Life & Times: A Guided Journal for Collecting Your Stories.

New Records at FindMyPast This Last Week

Databases added at FindMyPast this last week:

WWI Draft Registration Cards
Over 5.1 million new records have been added to our collection of United States WWI draft registration cards. This final update completes this fascinating collection, which now totals more than 25 million records.

The draft was authorized for the purpose of raising a national army in light of the United States’ entry into World War I. When, on April 6, 1917, the United States officially declared war on Germany, the US Army was far too small to effectively fight an overseas war. In response, the Selective Service Act was passed enabling men to be selected, trained and drafted into military service, as necessary. Following the Act’s passage on May 18th 1917, more than 24 million Americans (nearly 98% of the male population under the age of 46) registered for the draft, meaning that this collection records nearly half the male population at that time.

Each result will provide you with a transcript and an image of the original draft registration card. Transcripts will reveal your ancestor’s birth date, place of birth, residence, registration year and citizenship country. Images will often provide additional details such as your ancestor’s home address, citizenship status, marital status, occupation, employer and place of employment, prior military service, race, and details relating to their next of kin. Each card was also signed by the individual, which provides you with a look at your ancestor’s own script and signature.

Additional Sets Added This Last Week

A total of 7.3 million records from the US, Canada and the UK have been released this last Findmypast Friday. Additional collections now available to search include;

New Brunswick, County Deed Registry Books Image Browse
This browse-only collection allows you to explore over 1,400 volumes of land records in their entirety. The material covers 1780 to 1993, contains over 792,000 records and covers all 15 counties within the province. The deed books cover the years 1780 to 1930 while the Indexes run from 1780 to 1993.

Illinois, Northern District, Naturalization Index
Illinois, Northern District, Naturalization Index contains over 550,000 records. This index of naturalization cards from the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois covers petitions made by residents of northern Illinois, northwest Indiana, southern and eastern Wisconsin, and eastern Iowa. The records have the highest concentration from the mid-1800s to the mid-1900s, with a few outliers. Each result will provide you with a transcript and an image of the original record. Transcripts will generally reveal the date of your ancestor’s naturalization, their country of birth, place of birth and language. Images may provide further information such as the names and addresses of witnesses, the name and place of the naturalization court, their address, and their date and port of arrival in the United States.

Royal Canadian Mounted Police obituary card index and notices 1876-2007 Browse
Find out if your ancestor died or was killed while serving with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police with over 9,000 browsable obituary cards. The collection comprises obituaries and death notices of RCMP officers who died in service and that were printed in Royal Canadian Mounted Police publications, such as the Scarlet and Gold Magazine, as well as an index of obituaries. The amount of information listed will vary depending on the source material. Most records will reveal when your ancestor died, their rank and regimental number at the very least. A number or entries also include photographs of the deceased officer.

Scotland, Post Office Directories Image Browse
More than 180,000 additional records have been added to our collection of browsable Scottish Post Office Directories. These fascinating records provide brief descriptions of local areas, lists of notable people, of local business owners and are an excellent source for both family and local historians.

1939 Register – empty addresses
Over 667,000 additional 1939 Register records are now available to search. These new records relate to vacant addresses recorded in the register.

FindMyPast Adds 6.7 Million Exclusive Records to Their USA Marriage Collection

Findmypast continues to release millions of marriage records every quarter and aims to complete the entire digitization project by the end of 2017. The following is their latest news release:

5th May 2017: Leading family history website, Findmypast, has announced today the release of an additional 6.7 million United States Marriage records in partnership with Family Search International.

Covering 127 counties across 18 states, the new additions mark the latest step in Findmypast’s efforts to create the largest single online collection of U.S. marriage records in history. The collection was first launched in February 2016 and has received regular monthly updates ever since.

This is the first time that any of the records included in this update have been released online and all 6.7 million of them will only be available to search online at Findmypast. The new additions cover;

· Alabama
· Arkansas
· Connecticut
· Delaware
· Georgia
· Iowa
· Kentucky
· Maine
· New Hampshire
· New Jersey
· North Carolina
· Ohio
· Oregon
· Rhode Island
· Utah
· Vermont
· Washington
· West Virginia

Covering 360 years of marriages from 1650-2010, when complete this landmark collection will contain at least 100 million records and more than 450 million names from 2,800 counties across America. More than 60 per cent of which will have never before been published online. When complete, the collection will only be found in its entirety exclusively on Findmypast. The records include marriage date, the names of both bride and groom , birthplace, birth date, residence as well as fathers’ and mothers’ names.

The millions of new U.S. records will complement Findmypast’s massive collection of British and Irish data, allowing them to provide many more connections and a more comprehensive experience to family historians in the US and beyond. Customers with family trees on Findmypast will also benefit from leads connecting relatives on their trees with the marriage records, thus generating a whole new source of research.

For more information, visit: http://www.findmypast.com/marriages

FindMyPast Offers FREE Access to Their Entire Irish Collection Thru March 17

To coincide with St Patrick’s Day 2017, Findmypast is making their entire collection of more than 116 million Irish records free for a limited time!

Through 17 March 2017, you can access the largest collection of Irish records online for FREE!

Unique records from World War 1 and the Easter Rising, extensive travel and migration collections, as well as detailed Irish court and prison registers are all available to help you add colour to your users’ discoveries.

Access Findmypast’s Irish records for FREE through March 17 – Saint Patrick’s Day! Click on the appropriate link below for access.

You can get free access to the following:

  • Over 10 million Irish Catholic Parish Registers
  • Over 9.5 million Census records including the 1901 and 1911 censuses
  • Over 22 million Petty Sessions Court Registers
  • Over 33 million Irish newspaper articles spanning the years 1708 to 1956
  • Over 7.3 million Dog Licenses
  • Over 24 million Irish Passenger Lists
  • Over 2.4 million workhouse & poor law records
  • 4 million Irish Quaker records
  • Over 131,000 Easter Uprising & Ireland Under Martial Law
  • Prison Registers, featuring over 3.5 million names
  • Landed Estates Court records featuring details of over 500,000 tenants residing on estates all over Ireland
  • The complete Griffith’s Valuation
  • The most comprehensive set of national directories, dating back to 1814
  • Indexes to Irish wills dating from 1270 – 1858
  • Over 400,000 gravestones and church memorials

Click on the appropriate link above to access the FREE databases. REMEMBER – the offer ends at the end of the day March 17.

Catholic Records for Ireland, Britain & the USA Being Posted at FindMyPast

At Rootstech yesterday, Patty and I were able to visit with our old friend, Brian Donovan, who is the Licensing Manager at Findmypast. He brought us up to speed on what will be the most comprehensive online collection of Roman Catholic records for Ireland, Britain and the USA. Up to 100 million records. These records are being posted at FindMyPast.

The following is from their news release:

Findmypast is releasing over 3 million exclusive records including sacramental registers for the Archdiocese of Philadelphia from 1757 to 1916 as well as for the British Archdioceses of Westminster and Birmingham from 1657 onwards. This builds on last year’s publication of more than 10 million Irish Catholic parish registers.

Check the collection out by clicking here.

More about The Catholic Heritage Archive
The Catholic Church holds some of the oldest and best preserved genealogical records ever created. However, as many of these documents memorialise important religious sacraments such as baptism, marriage and burial, their privacy has long been protected and access to original copies has traditionally been hard to come by.

In collaboration with various Archdioceses of the Catholic Church, Findmypast is helping to bring these records online in one unified collection for the first time ever. Exclusively available on Findmypast, images of original documents will be completely free to view in many cases. Fully searchable transcripts will also be included, providing family historians from the around the world with easy access to these once closely guarded records.

The next phase of the Catholic Heritage Archive will include records from the archdioceses of New York and Baltimore as well as additional records from Philadelphia. There are over 30 million records in just these three dioceses. The digitization of the whole archive is a monumental undertaking and, when complete, will contain hundreds of millions of records for the USA alone.

Brian said; “The Roman Catholic Church is the largest Christian denomination in the world. Despite the popular perception that it had few adherents in Britain, or was not that important in American settlement, it has always been a significant component (up to 25%) of the population. The Catholic Heritage Archive will uncover the history of millions of Irish, Italian, German, Polish and many other nationalities as they made a new home in the USA.”

Discover Your British Family Heroes Over the Veteran’s Day Weekend, with Free Access to 70 Million Military Records, FREE at FindMyPast.com

The following is from FindMyPast:

veterans-day-2107_300pw

This Veteran’s Day, Findmypast wants to give everyone the chance to uncover the heroes in their family tree.

And so from November 10th to the 13th, you can explore Findmypast’s entire collection of over 70 million military records covering some of modern history’s most significant conflicts free of charge.

www.findmypast.com/military-records

The free access starts on 10th November at 9am BST and expires on 13th November 2016 at 11.59pm BST.

FindMyPast Adds Over 2.8 Million records this last week

Over 2.8 million additional records were available to search at Findmypast this last week, including:

FindMyPast-Logo-250pw

United States Marriages
Over 2.7 million additional records have been added to our collection of United States Marriages. The new additions come from 13 different states and include significant updates from Alabama, Florida, Illinois, Kentucky, Ohio and Rhode Island.

The records include transcripts and images of the original documents that list marriage date, the names of the bride and groom, birthplace, birth date, age and residence as well as fathers’ and mothers’ names.

Duty Locations, Naval Group China, World War II, 1942-1945
Explore more than 33,000 records containing the details of military personnel who served overseas with the United States’ Naval Group China, the US Navy’s intelligence unit in China during World War II. The records consist of muster roll reports created by the Department of the Navy, U.S. Naval Group China (NGC) to record locations and changes made to ranks and rates of pay for naval personnel.

The records contained in this collection relate to those persons attached to the NGC and provide names, ranks or rates of pay, branches of service, muster roll dates of reporting or detachment, and duty locations approximately every two weeks. As such, naval officers and sailors may appear multiple times in the records, tracking changes in an individual’s location, unit, rank or rate of pay over the course of the war.

1840 U.S. Census, Revolutionary War Veterans
1840 U.S. Census, Revolutionary War Veterans contains over 21,000 records of ex-servicemen and their next of kin who were receiving pensions in 1840 for service in the Revolutionary War.

On the back of the population schedules for the 1840 census, enumerators recorded the living pensioners of the Revolutionary War as well as other military service. The lists also noted an individual’s age and the name of the head of household in which the individual lived.

New Zealand Wars, officers and men killed 1860-1870
New Zealand Wars, officers and men killed 1860-1870 consists of 193 transcripts of nominal returns of colonial officers and men who were killed in action while fighting in the Maori Wars. The Māori Wars, began as a result of contested land purchases by the colonial government.

At that time, the colonial government believed that the Māori resistance had unified to both block future land sales and deny Crown sovereignty and, as a result, the government brought in thousands of troops to combat the Māori King Movement (Kīngitanga) and possess their lands for British settlers. Each transcript will list your ancestor’s date of death, rank and corps.

New Zealand, military pensions 1900-1902
Find out if your ancestor was eligible for a military pension and uncover details of their next of kin with a collection of over 5,000 transcripts recording former servicemen who were eligible for military pensions between 1900 and 1902.

This index will not only allow you to learn if your ancestor’s rank, service number and whether they qualified for a pension, but also the name and address of their next of kin, often including the relationship between the next of kin and your ancestor.

Ireland, Royal Hibernian Military School History
Explore this 168 page document to uncover the history of the Royal Hibernian Military School in Dublin. This fascinating publication includes transcriptions from memorial inscriptions, a roll of honour from the First World War, and transcripts from both the 1901 and 1911 census.

The Royal Hibernian Military School was founded in 1765 in Phoenix Park, Dublin. Today, it is the site of St Mary’s Hospital. When the school closed in 1924, all the registers and minute books were taken to Walworth, London. However, during the Second World War, these documents were destroyed in the Blitz. The Ireland, Royal Hibernian Military school history provides a valuable substitute for the records that were lost.

Ireland Military Records</strong>
Ireland Military Records is comprised of 8 different Irish military publications and contains over 2,700 records. The collection includes memorial inscriptions, army lists from the 19th and 17th centuries as well as two volumes of popular novels written by Charles Lever.

Each record is displayed as a PDF (Portable document format). The detail found in each record will vary depending on the publication and the subject.

New Records Available To Search at FindMyPast as of Last Friday, October 28

The following is from FindMyPast:

FindMyPast-Logo-250pw

Over 1.8 million new records are available to search this Findmypast Friday including:

United States, West Virginia Births
Containing over 35,000 records, West Virginia Births allows you to uncover details of your ancestor’s birth. These records cover the mid-nineteenth century into the early twentieth century. In addition to learning your ancestor’s birth date, you may also discover parents’ and grandparents’ names, allowing you to expand your family tree.

Each transcript will list your ancestor’s birth date, the names of both their parents and the names of both their grandparents as well as a link to an image of the original document. By following the image link, you may be able to discover additional information about your ancestor’s family. For example, the images often include a town name, nationality and race of parents, and occupation. Some registers will also provide the number this child is for the mother, which will help confirm whether your ancestor had siblings.

Utah Divorces
Utah Divorces consist of more than 177,000 records from Utah district courts covering the years 1997 to 2016. Each result includes a transcript that will reveal the date the divorce was filed, the petitioner, respondent, attorney, case type and the judgment that was reached.

Surrey Monumental Inscriptions Browse
Discover your English ancestor’s monumental inscription by browsing 32 volumes of these images of a card index to Surrey’s monumental inscriptions. The monumental inscriptions have been recorded from thousands of gravestones and memorials across Surrey.

The images show a card index of monumental inscriptions found across the county. The index is organised alphabetically by surname. The collection begins with directory A-Bard and finishes with directory Wo-Z. Each card may provide a name and death date. Others may have additional details such as a birth date, the names and death dates of other people buried in the same plot, parish, residence, names of other family members (i.e. parents, spouse, children), and age at the time of death.

Cavan Registers & Records
Cavan Registers & Records currently includes only one title: Crosserlough Census Index 1821. The 1821 census of Crosserlough, County Cavan, was taken on 28 May 1821. The Four Courts fire in Dublin destroyed the original census documents but copy was made prior to this and was safely stored in the Courthouse in Cavan before being transferred to the National Archives in Dublin.

There are just under 8,000 individuals in the 1821 census. Each entry records an individual name, age, occupation and relationship to the head of household.

Kilkenny Registers & Records
Kilkenny Registers & Records are presented as PDFs (Portable Document Format). The collection currently comprises the Castlecomer Census Index 1901 compiled in 2000 by Tom Delany from the 1901 census held at the National Archives of Ireland.

The publication is a summary of the population of Castlecomer in the 1901. It begins with an introduction and then lists the names, ages, and occupations of the all the inhabitants. On image number 204 is the beginning of an index of all the names found in the publication.

Wicklow registers & records
Wicklow registers & records is a collection of unique genealogical sources including school registers, lists of corn growers, and a 19th century petition.

Dublin Registers & Records
10 new publications have been added to our collection of Dublin Registers & Records including school registers, district & street censuses, business directories & monumental inscriptions.

Dublin Registers & Records is comprised of over 3,500 PDF images. The collection also contains parish records (baptisms, marriages, and burials) from the Church of Ireland and the majority of records will reveal your ancestor’s name, address and the names of their parents.

Irish Newspapers
Over 1.7 million new articles have been added to our collection of historic Irish newspapers. New additions have been made to existing titles including The Irish Times and The Weekly Irish Times.

PERSI Monthly Image Update Browse
Over 87,777 new images have been added to the PERiodical Source Index. The new additions have been made to 15 existing titles covering Massachusetts, Connecticut, Boston, Illinois, Maryland, Louisiana, the Huguenot Society of Pennsylvania & Confederate veterans.

FindMyPast Publishes the Second Installment of Easter Rising & Ireland Under Martial Law Collection

The following news release is from FindMyPast. I got it on October 21, but just haven’t had the time to get it formatted and posted until today.

FindMyPast-Logo-250pw

· Over 48,000 additional records released in association with The National Archives
· Records document the struggles of life under martial law in Ireland and record the details of both soldiers and civilians
· New courts martial records, intelligence reports, prisoner rolls, individual cases and search & raid reports released in second installment of landmark collection

Leading family history website, FindMyPast, has today announced the online publication of over 48,000 records in the second installment of their ‘Easter Rising & Ireland Under Martial Law, 1916-1921’ collection.

The once classified records, digitized from original documents held by The National Archives in Kew, record the struggles of life under martial law in Ireland. Consisting of more than 119,000 images, the new additions include a variety of different documents ranging from records of courts martial (both civilian and military) and intelligence reports, to case files and nominal rolls of prisoners.

The records shed new light on the period of martial law in Ireland which was declared by the Lord Lieutenant in 1916, including the War of Independence, when the British military assumed control of the executive, judiciary and legislative arms of the entire country.

They contain the names of the hundreds of people who were detained and interned in prisons across Ireland, England and Wales and tried by courts martial, including the names of prominent nationalists and elected officials. The internment files contain reports on individual detainees recording their charges, trial, and sentence as well as personal letters from prisoners or their relatives testifying to their innocence.

Reports pertaining to courts martial include statements about the offense and details of the court proceedings. A number also include witness testimonies and statements about the character of the individual on trial.

The collection reveals the efforts of the military and police to discover arms, ammunition, seditious material and individuals associated with groups such as Sinn Fein, Irish Citizen Army, Irish Volunteers and the Irish Republican Army through thousands of raids on pubs, hotels, nationalist clubhouses and homes. They document what each search revealed, including the names of anyone found on the site (and if they were questioned or arrested), and what items of interest were uncovered.

This latest installment also includes military intelligence reports on the actions of the rebels as well as reports of unarmed persons killed or wounded by the rebels. They contain details of how individuals were wounded as well as daily situation reports created by the British Army. A number of telegrams reporting the swift trials and executions of prominent leaders and discussions about what to do with the possessions of prisoners can also be found within the collection…

The collection was digitized from original records held by The National Archives in London and contains documents from their WO35 series, War Office: Army of Ireland: Administration and Easter Rising Records. It is available to search and browse.

Totaling more than 114 million records, FindMyPast has the largest Irish family history collection available online.

Brian Donovan, Head of Irish Records at FindMyPast, said:
“We are delighted to release another large tranche of records from this important period in Ireland’s history. They document more of the events of the War of Independence and the population’s interaction with the Army under the rigors of martial law. Included are prisoner lists, case files, more search reports, as well as two volumes of the courts martial of British soldiers. They provide a fascinating insight to these times as well as helping us understand motivations, actions and consequences.”

Genealogical Society of Ireland Journals & Publications Go Online at Findmypast

The following news release is from FindMyPast:

findmypast_irish_journals_300pw

· All Society journals from 1992 to 2016 including over 800 individual articles
· All Society publications including extensive collections of gravestone inscriptions, historic records and surname studies.
· Released online for the first time

Dublin, Ireland, October 18th 2016: Leading Family History website Findmypast, has today announced the online publication of all The’s journals dating from 1992 to 2016. The journals are now available to search as part of the PERiodical Source Index and will be joined by the expansive range of other Genealogical Society or Ireland publications over the coming weeks. The publications consists of a wide range of documents including transcripts of original records, memorial inscriptions, local and surname studies and collections of specialist sources and guides. The information dates back to 1798 and covers many counties in Ireland including Cavan, Dublin, Kildare, Kilkenny, Laois, Louth, Offaly and Wicklow.

The release is comprised of two sets of important publications, namely:
· Journals – In 1992 the Society commenced publication of a journal. Back then it was the Dun Laoghaire Genealogical Society, but immediately expanded its remit to cover much more than the area around the Borough. It published 224 articles between then and 1999 when it changed its name to the Genealogical Society of Ireland. Since 2000 it has published over 600 articles on Irish family history including transcripts of source materials, scholarly articles, name studies and other material.

· Publications – Alongside the journals, the society has had an ambitious publishing programme. It has so far published over 40 individual volumes of source materials. Its first in 1992 was an 1837 memorial from Wicklow signed by hundreds of residents. Thereafter they have published many volumes of gravestone inscriptions and memorials, several school registers, military records, extracts from the 1821 and 1901 census returns, occupational records, information about the population in 1798, and specific family studies, and much more.

Brian Donovan, Head of Irish Records at Findmypast, comments:
“The Genealogical Society of Ireland occupies a unique position in the Irish genealogical landscape. Not only is it the largest volunteer society in the Republic, it is by far the most active, involved in campaigns, publications, international events and the promotion of the hobby of family history. It is dedicated to making the complexities of research understandable to the novice, while at the same time developing unique expertise across a range of topics. It is particularly important as a lobbyist to government for the shared interests of the genealogy sector in Ireland and opens its doors to everyone to help in this task. With all this in mind, we at Findmypast are especially pleased to see their fabulous collection of publications available to our audience. We also wish them every continuing success.”

Tom Conlon, Director, Sales and Marketing, Genealogical Society of Ireland said
“We are delighted to advance to a further stage of collaboration with Findmypast. It brings our portfolio of publications to a very much larger audience worldwide.

The range of information of genealogical interest available online continues to expand at a phenomenal rate. With a few clicks, one can find a whole range of information and records. By joining a society, members are helped to better interpret this information and to enhance their understanding of the times and circumstances in which their ancestors lived”

About Findmypast
Findmypast (previously DC Thomson Family History) is a Scottish-owned world leader in online family history. It has an unrivalled record of online innovation in the field and 18 million registered users across its family of online brands, which includes Lives of the First World War, The British Newspaper Archive and Genes Reunited, amongst others.
Its lead brand, also called Findmypast, is a searchable online archive of over eight billion family history records, ranging from parish records and censuses to migration records, military collections, historical newspapers and lots more. For members around the world, the site is a crucial resource for building family trees and conducting detailed historical research.

In April 2003, Findmypast was the first online genealogy site to provide access to the complete birth, marriage, and death indexes for England & Wales, winning the Queen’s Award for Innovation. Since that time, the company has digitised records from across the globe, including over 120 million Irish family history records, the largest collection online.
www.findmypast.com

About Genealogical Society of Ireland
The Society was established in 1990 to promote an awareness, appreciation and knowledge of our genealogical and heraldic heritage in Ireland and amongst her Diaspora.
It is devoted to the promotion of the study of genealogy and related subjects as educational leisure pursuits available to all in the community irrespective of age, prior-learning, background or socio-economic circumstances by organising Open Meetings, lectures, workshops, publishing genealogical material, organising group project, exhibiting at major relevant events and the provision of an Archive and Research Centre, An Daonchartlann.
The Society encourages its members, undertaking research in every county in Ireland, to make their research available to others through publication. Through its publications programme, the Society makes accessible to researchers at home and abroad many sources otherwise not available except in their original state. The collection and repatriation of genealogical material is an important function of the Society’s Archive and Research Centre, An Daonchartlann.
www.familyhistory.ie

FindMyPast Adds 4 Million Records to its United States Marriage Collection

The following is from FindMyPast:

FindMyPast-Logo-250pw

Springfield, Illinois: 01 September 2016: Leading family history website, Findmypast, announced today at the 2016 conference of the Federation of Genealogical Societies the release of over 4 million new marriage records in the latest instalment of their United States Marriages collection.

Released in partnership with FamilySearch International, the records contain more than 8 million names and marks the latest stage of an ambitious project that will see Findmypast digitize and publish the single largest online archive of U.S. marriages in history.

Covering 360 years of marriages from 1650-2010, when complete this landmark collection will contain at least 100 million records, more than 450 million names from 2,800 counties across America. More than 60 per cent of the records will have never before been published online and the collection will only be found in its entirety exclusively on Findmypast.

While the United States Marriage collection includes marriages from nearly every state, this latest instalment includes significant additions from Arkansas, West Virginia, Illinois, New England, Tennessee and Massachusetts.

The records include marriage date, bride and groom names, birthplace, birth date, age, and residence as well as father’s and mother’s names. Customers with family trees on Findmypast will benefit from leads connecting relatives on their trees with the marriage records, thus generating a whole new source of research.

Commenting, Ben Bennett, Executive Vice-President North America and International for Findmypast said:
“The United States marriages project is central to Findmypast’s growth strategy in the U.S. The millions of new U.S. records will complement Findmypast’s massive collection of British and Irish data. Many of these new US marriage records have never been available online before and we are excited to help our customers make new discoveries and fill in the missing pieces in their research.”

2.5 Million Crime Records Released by FindMyPast

The following News Release was just received from FindMyPast:

FindMyPast-Logo-250pw

This week’s Findmypast Friday marks the release of over 2.5 million historic crime records in association with The National Archives. The release marks the final installment of the Crime, Prisons and Punishment collection, the largest searchable database of English and Welsh crime and punishment records available online, containing over 5.5 million records.

England & Wales, Crime, Prisons & Punishment, 1770-1935 Phase 3

New Series added to the collection include:
• PCOM 4: Home Office and Prison Commission: Female Licences – notes of licences to female convicts and in some cases, transfer papers. Each file can include a photograph (from 1871 onward), letters or notes from the prisoner, a Medical History sheet, reports of misconduct whilst in prison, the court of conviction, details of crime and of previous crimes.

• HO 26: Home Office: Criminal Registers, Middlesex – registers of all persons charged with indictable offences showing the results of the trials, the sentences in case of conviction, and dates of execution of persons sentence to death; some of the registers contain personal information respecting the prisoners.

• HO 27: Home Office: Criminal Registers, England and Wales – registers of all persons in England and Wales charged with indictable offences showing the results of the trials, the sentences in case of conviction, and dates of execution of persons sentence to death; some of the registers contain personal information respecting the prisoners.

Additional records have also been added to:

• HO 8: Home Office: Convict Hulks, Convict Prisons and Criminal Lunatic Asylums: Quarterly Returns of Prisoners 1824-1876
• HO 47: Home Office: Judges’ Reports on Criminals 1784-1830
• HO 140: Home Office: calendar of prisoners
• PCOM 2: Home Office and Prison Commission: prison records
• PCOM 3: Home Office and Prison Commission: Male Licences 1853-1887

England & Wales, Crime, Prisons & Punishment, 1770-1935 – Browse
Browse over 3,417 volumes of English and Welsh crime records held by The National Archives. The browse function allows you explore individual documents in their entirety including volumes of criminal calendars, prisoner registers, male and female prison licenses and more. Descriptions of each of the series included are available at the bottom of the search page.

Britain, Chronicles of Crime or the New Newgate Calendar, vols I & II, pub 1841
The Newgate Calendar contains more than 81,000 records that packed with fascinating tales of arson, murder, piracy, embezzlement, conspiracy, and treason. The records consist of a “series of memoirs and anecdotes of notorious characters who have outraged the laws of Great Britain from the earliest period” up to 1841.

Tasmania Convict records 1800-1893
Search more than 81,000 records to discover whether your ancestor transported to Van Diemen’s Land as a convict between 1800 and 1893. This varied collection contains records from over 20 different sources held by the Tasmanian Archive and Heritage Office.

Irish Newspapers
1,041,492 articles from two brand new titles have been added to our collection of historic Irish newspapers.
· Belfast Telegraph – 944,404 articles covering 1871 – 1881, 1886 – 1892, 1897 – 1899, 1903 – 1909
· Cork Constitution – 97,088 articles covering 1890 – 1891

Findmypast Publishes over 911,000 Royal Navy Pension Records Online for the First Time

The fallowing news release is from Find My Past
image001-250pimage003-250

Today, 09 April 2016, over 911,000 records of British Royal Navy pensions have been published online for the first time at Findmypast.

The publication, released in association with The National Archives, consists of an assortment of documents kept by the Greenwich Hospital and the Royal Hospital Chelsea to record the details of Greenwich Pensioners.

The British Royal Navy & Royal Marines service and pension records span over 230 years of British naval history from to 1704 to 1934 and contain over 270,000 scanned colour images. The collection will allow family historians to uncover fascinating details of their ancestor’s career with the Royal Navy, such as their period of service, where they served, when they joined and if they were wounded in the line of duty.

Since 1804, The Royal Greenwich Hospital has paid small out-pensions to large numbers of deserving applicants who had served in either the Navy or Marines, as well as admitting a fixed number to live as in-pensioners of the hospital. This is the first time that records relating to these payments have been made available online, allowing more people than ever before to learn about the lives of their naval ancestors.

The collection includes:

  • Registers of Greenwich Hospital out-pensioners and candidates
  • Service records of both officers’ & ratings’ between 1802 and 1919
  • Indexes of Greenwich Hospital pensioners and out-pensioners
  • Royal Hospital Chelsea payment returns for England, Scotland, Wales and Jersey
  • Royal Hospital Chelsea admission books, registers and papers

To coincide with the upcoming centenary of the Battle of Jutland, Findmypast has also released over 40,000 records of Royal Navy & Royal Marines personnel who served at Jutland. The Battle, which took place off the coast of Denmark between the 31st May and 1st June 1916, was the largest naval engagement of the First World War and cost the lives of nearly 7,000 British sailors.

Paul Nixon, military expert at Findmypast, says:
“As an island nation we owe a huge debt of gratitude to the men and women who have served Great Britain at sea. These naval pension records, indexed and published online for the first time, shed new light on our naval ancestors and will open up fresh lines of enquiry for thousands of people. This release cements Findmypast’s reputation for having the most comprehensive online collection of British naval records.”

Bruno Pappalardo, Principal Maritime Records Specialist at The National Archives, said:
“The complexity, diversity and nature of eighteenth and nineteenth century Royal Navy pension records has previously made the searching of such documents speculative and difficult to undertake. The release of these key pension records will be an essential contribution to opening up these records for research purposes.”

About Findmypast
Findmypast (previously DC Thomson Family History) is a British-owned world leader in online family history. It has an unrivalled record of online innovation in the field and 18 million registered users across its family of online brands, which includes Lives of the First World War, The British Newspaper Archive and Genes Reunited, amongst others.

Its lead brand, also called Findmypast, is a searchable online archive of over two billion family history records, ranging from parish records and censuses to migration records, military collections, historical newspapers and lots more. For members around the world, the site is a crucial resource for building family trees and conducting detailed historical research.

In April 2003, Findmypast was the first online genealogy site to provide access to the complete birth, marriage, and death indexes for England & Wales, winning the Queen’s Award for Innovation. Since that time, the company has digitised records from across the globe, including major collections from Britain, Ireland, Australia, and the United States.

About The National Archives
The National Archives is a government department and an executive agency of the Ministry of Justice (MoJ). As the official archive of the UK government and England and Wales, we look after and make available to the public a collection of historical records dating back over 1,000 years, including records as diverse as Domesday Book and MI5 files.

Our 21st-century role is to collect and secure the future of the record, both digital and physical, to preserve it for generations to come, and to make it as accessible as possible. We do this by devising technological solutions to ensure the long-term survival of public records and working to widen access to our collection. The National Archives also advises on information management across government, publishes all UK legislation, manages Crown copyright and leads the archive sector. We work to promote and improve access to public sector information and its re-use. www.nationalarchives.gov.uk www.legislation.gov.uk

10 Million New Irish Catholic Parish Registers With FREE Access Through March 7, 2016!

FREE-Irish-Records-March-1-7-2016-570pw

The following was received from FindMyPast:

We’re excited to reveal the launch of 10 million new Irish Catholic Parish Registers on Findmypast today. Covering the majority of Ireland, this incredible record set includes 40 million names, 3,500 registers and over 1,000 parishes. To celebrate, we’re making all 110 million Irish records free for everyone until 7th March. Click on the links or on the illustration to search.

FindMyPast Announces the Launch of 10 Million Irish Parish Registers

The following news release is from Alex Cox, with FindMyPast:

FindMyPast-Logo-250pw

Salt Lake City: 5 February 2016 – Leading family history site, Findmypast, announced today at Rootstech that it will launch 10 million Irish Catholic Parish Registers, one of the most important Irish record collections, in March 2016.

Covering over 200 years from 1671-1900 and over 1,000 parishes, Findmypast has worked to transcribe the National Library of Ireland’s online image collection of 3,500 baptism and marriage registers. This is the first time that the collection has been indexed with the images linked online, making the search much easier and the records more accessible. As a result, family historians will now be able to make all important links between generations with the baptism records and between families with the marriage registers. These essential records cover the entire island of Ireland, both Northern Ireland and the Irish Republic.

Ben Bennett, Executive Vice-President North America and International for Findmypast said:
“The Irish Parish Registers will be a gold mine for anyone with Irish heritage. The 10 million baptism and marriage records will help even more people to trace their Irish ancestors. In addition to being able to search this valuable collection, customers with family trees on Findmypast will benefit from leads that automatically connect the records related to their family directly to their trees. The Catholic Parish Registers are a hugely important addition to Findmypast’s Irish collection, the largest and most comprehensive source for online Irish family history research.”

Click on the link’s to go to the FindMyPast website.