Tuesday, March 7, 2017

What’s New on FamilySearch and Ancestry

imageFamilySearch and Ancestry regularly report about changes on their websites.


Ancestry uploads a “What’s New at Ancestry” YouTube video every month. By the time you read this article, Ancestry’s Crista Cowan will have uploaded the video for March. Here’s some of what was new in February:

Ancestry will be present at several upcoming conferences: NGS in  Raleigh, NC on 10-13 May 2017; Southern California Genealogy Jamboree in Burbank on 9-11 June 2017; IAJGS in Orlando, FL on 23-28 July 2017; and FGS in Pittsburgh, PA on 30 August-2 September 2017.

Ancestry added 11 million records in January. Crista showed an example “image first” collection, “Province of Gerona, Spain, Municipal Records, 1566-1956.” These are collections for which Ancestry has images but may not have an index for several years. However, they wanted to get the images out to you as soon as possible so you could start using them. Instead of searching, look for the Browse option on the right-hand side of the page.

Ancestry added several million Prussian records. They have added several databases of Isle of Jersey records from the Church of England, several Belgium civil registration databases, and some Delaware marriage records. In the previous month Ancestry added about 80 million records, mostly U.S. marriage records. These Delaware records were a continuation of that effort.


In a recent blog article, FamilySearch reported on several new features.

Notification message of attachment icon feature

FamilySearch reported that search results of historical records will now indicate which records have already been attached to FamilySearch Family Tree. To see the icon you must have a free FamilySearch account and you must login.
FamilySearch has added an action menu for photographs and document images, shown on the left in the image below.
New action menu for photos and document images

Gallery view now has an option to display just photos and document images that are not in albums.

The article indicates that you will soon be able to upload photographs directly from your social media accounts. That feature is now present and supports Instagram and Facebook.
Options to upload from Instagram and Facebook


  1. I took my computer in for fixing to a computer "expert" who deleted all my genealogy back to the late 1500s and I'm sick about it. It was all on the last PAF put out. I found a PAF gedcom from a long time ago, but don't have any software now to open it. Yes, I was foolish in saving it in PAF, but what do I do now? I have paper copies of some of the genealogy (to 1800's), but most was in PAF. Is there a software (free preferred as I live on Social Security) I can download that can open this old 1970's gedcom file? Thanks for your columns. They are delightful and informative.

    1. RootsMagic has a free version and will open PAF files. https://www.rootsmagic.com/Essentials/

  2. I manage a family tree on Ancestry for my best friend. I downloaded it on to a flash drive, tested it on my computer and all was well. When she tried to open it on her computer it would not open. Does she need to subscribe to Ancestry to open the flash drive?? I gave her the flash drive so that she could look at the tree with her daughters, not make any changes or additions. (She has no intention of joining Ancestry because she is not a genealogist). Any suggestions?


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.