Thursday, April 03, 2008

1890-1960 UK outbound passenger lists completed

NOTE from DearMYRTLE: The following was just received from our friends at FindMyPast.com, which recently celebrated it’s 5th birthday. Please address all inquiries to Paul Yates paul.yates@findmypast.com.

FindMyPast.com completes AncestorsOnBoard Passenger Lists

Leading UK family history website findmypast.com has completed its project to scan and index the complete set of outbound passenger lists for long-distance voyages from all British ports between 1890 and 1960.

Working in association with The National Archives of the United Kingdom, the project took a team of 125 people over a year to scan in the 1.1 million full colour individual pages - some handwritten, some typed. In total 24 million passengers are recorded travelling between these dates. Their reasons for travelling varied from emigration to diplomatic missions, to business trips or purely for pleasure.

The final decade to go live covers the years 1950 to 1960 and includes the so-called "Ten Pound Poms" travelling under the Australian government assisted passage scheme. In most cases the old UK address of the passenger is given, enabling family historians to trace back the roots of their British ancestors. Accompanying some of the 1960 lists are scans of the handwritten departure cards completed by each passenger. These show the full date of birth of the passenger as well as their UK address and occupation, with the names and dates of birth of any children travelling with them on the reverse - a goldmine for the genealogist.

There are also a number of famous people recorded travelling in the records during the 1950s. Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair can be found listed as Anthony Charles Lynton Blair travelling on the Iberia to Adelaide on 24 December 1954, aged one, while on 5 August 1958 the young Bee Gees are recorded emigrating with their parents on the Fairsea to Sydney.

All seven decades of the passenger lists are free to search at findmypast.com. The images and transcripts can be viewed with either a 12 month Explorer or a 1 month Voyager subcription to findmypast.com, or alternatively with pay-per-view units or vouchers.

About findmypast.com
Leading UK family history website findmypast.com (formerly 1837online.com) was the first company to make the complete birth, marriage and death indexes for England & Wales available online in April 2003.

Following the transcription, scanning and indexing of over two million images, the company launched the first website to allow the public easy and fast access to the complete indexes, which until then had only been available on microfiche film in specialist archives and libraries. The launch was instrumental in creating the widespread and growing interest in genealogy seen in the UK today.

Findmypast has subsequently digitised many more family history records and now offers access to over 500 million records dating as far back as 1538. This allows family historians and novice genealogists to search for their ancestors among comprehensive collections of military records, census, migration, occupation directories, and current electoral roll data, as well as the original comprehensive birth, marriage and death records.

In November 2006 findmypast launched the ancestorsonboard.com microsite in association with The National Archives to publish outbound passenger lists for long-distance voyages departing all British ports between 1890 and 1960.

As well as providing access to historical records, findmypast is also developing a range of online tools to help people discover and share their family history more easily, beginning with the launch of Family Tree Explorer in July 2007.

Over 1.7 million people in the UK have researched their family trees and findmypast.com has over 800,000 active registered users, revealing the mass appeal of genealogy and findmypast.com's position as the leading family history website based in the UK.

In April 2007 findmypast's then parent company Title Research Group received the prestigious Queen's Award for Enterprise: Innovation 2007 in recognition of their achievement.

Findmypast.com was acquired in December 2007 by Scotland Online, the company which won The National Archives' tender to publish online the 1911 census.


For further information, please contact:
Paul Yates,
Head of Product and Services
findmypast.com
020 7549 0990
paul.yates@findmypast.com

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