“What’s New At Ancestry.com March 2016” YouTube Video; You Can View The Video In This Blog Post

Hi Everyone!

ancestry-logoI just did a quick look at YouTube and saw that there is now a March 2016 video posted from Ancestry.com that is titled “What’s New At Ancestry.com March 2016”.

The video is an approximate 32 minute production hosted by Crista Cowan of Ancestry.com who provides the viewers with updates on what new things users of Ancestry.com should be aware of.

Crista also mentions that in addition to the monthly YouTube video she creates describing “new” things at Ancestry.com for a particular month the reader should always check the blog from Ancestry.com that you can access at:

Ancestry.com Blog

Topics covered in this video by Crista are:

  • Upcoming Conferences –  National Genealogical Society Annual Conference, May 2016, at Ft. Lauderdale, FL; Southern California Jamboree, June, 2016, Burbank, CA; IAJGS Conference, August 2016, Seattle, WA; Federation of Genealogy Societies, August 2016, Springfield, IL
  • Ancestry Site – “continuing searching” feature returns; Life Story and Facts tutorials now available.
  • Ancestry DNA – Ancestry DNA testing is now available in 29 more countries.  Full listing of the countries is available in the Ancestry Blog.  Test results from someone taking the test in a foreign country are compared to all of the entries in the total Ancestry DNA database.
  • Ancestry Academy – new tutorials on Italians, Females, School Records, Timelines and African-Americans.
  • Desktop Software – Family Tree Maker acquired by MacIev software, original developers of the product.  Future updates and new releases will continue through them; RootsMagic lineage software will be integrated with Family Tree Maker functions.
  • New Databases – United States, Definitive List of Slaves and Property, 1827-1828.  This new database contains about 5 thousand records.  Always a good idea to browse the database description of records before you search to get a feel for what is in the database.  The database is also indexed and searchable with a template of information you can supply to narrow down your search.  When searching you can select the actual image of data to look at.  The most important part of this database regarding slave information is that the name of the slave is actually included in this database.  Slave names were rarely noted on records.
  • New Databases – Alberta, Canada, Homestead Records, 1870-1930.  This new database contains about 206,000 records.      The database is also indexed and searchable with a template of information you can supply to narrow down your search.  When searching you can select the actual image of data to look at.  You can find the name, age, place of birth, date of application, place of residence at application, homestead location and marital status of applicant.
  • New Databases – California Mortuary Records of Chinese Dissidents, 1870-1933.  This new database contains about 26,000 records.  Always a good idea to browse the listing of the date intervals of these records before you search to get a feel for what is in the database.  The database is also indexed and searchable with a template of information you can supply to narrow down your search.  When searching you can select the actual image of data when it is available.  I saw both handwritten records and typed records.
  • New Databases – Sydney, Australia, Cemetery Headstone Transcriptions, 1867-2002.  This new database contains about 285,000 records.  Always a good idea to browse the listing of the of records before you search to get a feel for what is in the database.    The database is also indexed and searchable with a basic size template of information you can supply to narrow down your search.  No actual images of headstones to see.  Only transcribed data is shown.  You can often see the religious denomination of the deceased.
  • New Databases – Ireland, Catholic Parish Registers, 1655-1915This new database contains about 26  million records.  Always a good idea to browse the listing of the counties and the towns/cities (very long list) and date intervals of parish records before you search to get a feel for what is in the database.  The database is also indexed and searchable with a large size template of information you can supply to narrow down your search.  When searching you can select the actual image of data to look at.   It would be helpful for you to know a more exact geographic location to search if you know it and select it from the large list of towns/cities.
  • New Databases – Indiana, United Methodist Church Records, 1837-1970 (434,000 records; searchable with images); New Jersey, United Methodist Church Records, 1800-1970 (721,000 records; searchable with images); U.S., Selected States Dutch Reformed Church Membership Records, 1707-1995 (400,000 records; searchable with images)
  • Tip From Crista – A particular database may have no connection to your research but you may still benefit from knowing about it.  As an example, there may be an Australian Outbound Passenger List database.  You may not have an Australian connection, but discovering that Outbound passenger records exists may allow you to consider to see if such records exist for the country associated with your ancestor.
  • Research Reminders #1 – Read the complete database descriptions for the newly added material to know what is contained and what is NOT contained.  Don’t just search!
  • Research Reminder #2 – Understand the records you are looking at when you are searching a newly added database.  Knowing what is there will help you create better search terms for better results.  Just create a “test” input search to see the results.
  • Crista has noted on past videos that it is important to consider “browsing” records rather than always searching indexed databases.  Browsing databases are those that have not yet been indexed.  You cannot search these but the data as images is available for you to look through.  The data is generally subdivided into manageable viewing components.  Think of it as viewing a microfilm online.  Look at an individual database via the “Card Catalog” and look to see if it has a “Browse Box” that allows you to look at the data but not be able yet to search it.  The “browse box” implies the data is not yet indexed for direct searching.

You can view this video directly here:

Crista does an excellent job of sharing what is new at Ancestry.com that can make your use of the product even more effective and beneficial with your family history research.  She shows you via her computer screen what to look for at the Ancestry.com site.

I also did a search on YouTube looking for similarly titled videos and did discover that there are many “What’s New At Ancestry.com” videos on YouTube going back at least until April of 2012.  These series of videos are a great tool to use to review going back in time so you keep current with all that is being offered and added to Ancestry.com.

Here is a simple link to my search in YouTube that will give you this nice list of these videos posted to YouTube that you can do some catching up on to know about all of the new things at Ancestry.com:

“What’s New At Ancestry.com” YouTube Videos

The host does a very good job verbally describing the new additions as well as showing you the new things at Ancestry via screencasting.  That allows you to see her computer screen as she points out the various “new” things you may see at Ancestry.com and where they are located.

Because so many of us use Ancestry.com, either via a personal subscription or by using the Ancestry product at our local libraries, these YouTube videos are quite informative to keep users up to date with new features that take root on Ancestry.com.  The host provides even more depth to the importance of the change and even why it was done.

I think you will enjoy the most recent video above as well as looking at the link above for even more of these videos.

Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District Library

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