The following news release was received from Tom Champoux, with the New England Historic Genealogical Society.

AmericanAncestors.org reflects the organization’’s expanding national collection and resources.

AmericanAncestors.org

Boston, MA – August 19, 2010: – D. Brenton Simons, President and CEO of the New England Historic Genealogical Society (NEHGS), today announced the launch of AmericanAncestors.org, the organization’s new website that will serve as the home of its growing regional and national genealogical resources. AmericanAncestors.org will contain all of the Society’s New England and New York content, features, articles, and resources, as well as weekly updates and databases in a variety of regional and ethnic specialties, such as sources for mid-Atlantic, Irish, and African American research.

AmericanAncestors.org provides online access to some of the most important research tools and resources available, and includes a new image viewer, faster navigation and search results time, and more unique content. This expanded scope allows greater opportunity for NEHGS to bring unique content to its members and the public while establishing new and beneficial collaborations with likeminded non-profit organizations and important commercial entities.

Simons said, “This website marks a transformative experience in our 165-year history, the first genealogical society founded in America. It represents the next major step ahead as we continue to expand our resources.” Simons added, “AmericanAncestors.org is a new, dynamic platform from which we will grow in our position as a leader in American genealogy and as the nation’s largest genealogical society.”

Simons also said that NEHGS remains committed to its core strength, namely New England genealogical scholarship. “New England will always be our greatest strength and primary focus, as well as our cherished institutional name. We have much New England material to bring to the public and the new website will add 25 million additional New England names to search.”

NEHGS Board Chairman, Eric B. Schultz, said, “AmericanAncestors.org will help family historians of all levels have a much better understanding of our core assets and resources. We are proud of the fact that NEHGS has worked to define genealogy in America, and this site will help advance our important national mission.”

Among other things, AmericanAncestors.org will provide:

•More exclusive content: more unique, searchable, highly vetted materials for New England, New York, and other regions added weekly

•Enhanced search engine: an all-new, true “master search” that will search across all databases and other web-based content, with faster results and easier navigation

•Personal research profile: a social networking feature for NEHGS members to develop an online profile and input family research information, and even share them with others

•Improved images: a state-of-the-art new image viewer that will provide easier saving, and viewing of images and data

•Timely information: more news on our homepage and an enhanced blog “The Daily Genealogist” will bring our weekly electronic newsletter to the next level with stories and helpful research tips

In addition, NEHGS is inviting people to sign up for the NEHGS “Guest User” program. This free registration gives anyone access to the popular weekly news stories as well as special access to a variety of databases, resources, articles, and other tools to help with their research. More information can be found on the NEHGS website at www.AmericanAncestors.org.

The Society’s “American Ancestors” identity was announced earlier this year, when its quarterly member magazine was rebranded American Ancestors: New England, New York, and Beyond. In October 2009, NEHGS began publishing American Ancestors Journal, an annual supplement to its quarterly journal, The New England Historical and Genealogical Register.

About NEHGS
The New England Historic Genealogical Society is the country’s leading resource for family history research. We help family historians expand their knowledge, skills, and understanding of their family and its place in history. Founded in 1845, NEHGS is today the oldest and largest non-profit genealogical organization, with more than 26,000 members nationally. The NEHGS research headquarters, located at 99-101 Newbury Street in Boston, is home to some 28 million books, journals, manuscripts, papers, photographs, documents, and other artifacts, many of which date back centuries.

Its award-winning website offers access to more than 135 million names from 2,400 databases. NEHGS staff includes some of the leading expert genealogists in the country specializing in American, Irish, English, Italian, Scottish, Atlantic and French Canadian, African American, Native American, and Jewish genealogy.