New Records Are Marching Onto the Ancestry Website
April 15, 2014
Did you hear the news? The Ancestry Company signed an agreement with Family Search International, thanks to which Ancestry will add more than one billion already digitized records from more than sixty countries to its databases. Moreover, it will be adding approximately a billion never seen or published records from the Family Search vault in the next few years. Isn’t it fascinating?
So what does this mean for you? As a genealogy enthusiast, you may have an opportunity to enrich your family tree tremendously. When I first read about this agreement, and when I saw the plan for which countries were coming to Ancestry, I was very glad to learn this news. Why? I am from Central Europe, and until now, I was not able to find many Central and East European records on their website. There were some published records helpful for the researchers specifically related to the WWII era and Jewish ancestry. However, if you wanted to research earlier time periods and other religions, you probably switched to the Family Search website. Am I right? From now on, you may have a choice.
These records are on their way to the website, millions and millions of new records from countries such as Germany, Austria, Hungary, Belgium, Ireland, and many others. And these four countries are coming soon: Slovakia, Slovenia, Estonia, and Moldova. But it is not just Europe. The records are coming from all around the globe.
Out of sheer curiosity, I wanted to check if I could see a difference. I typed my last name on the Ancestry.com website, and there it was. My husband’s last name suddenly appeared in the 16th century with the exact spelling as it is now. Perfect! What was puzzling was the place - mostly western German lands, especially a lot of folks in the Rhineland area in the 1590s. It was strange because the England records showed this name, too, if not the exact spelling. It was the same pronunciation as early as the 1550s. Did they travel from the west to the east and settle then in what are now the Czech, Moravian, and Slovak lands? Did this exact name already exist back in those times? I might have new work to do.
I mentioned my discovery to my husband, and he, with his sense of humor, immediately joked, “You should address me in a polite way from now on.” (Those of you who know a little German, Czech, or Slovak, know what I am talking about). You should call me “Pan Velkomozhny” (Your Majesty or Count). Then he added: “Maybe I still have some properties there, perhaps a castle.” So, we had some entertainment out of this discovery, and you will too with yours. Genealogy does not need to be boring, right? Check out the new additions to Ancestry.com or MCPL’s Ancestry Library Edition database available at any branch. And don’t forget to share your new discoveries with us.
Midwest Genealogy Center