Thursday, January 26, 2012

Historical Society of PA and Ancestry.com Partnership

NOTE from DearMYRTLE: The following was received from Ancestry.com. Please address all inquiries to support@ancestry.com.


Ancestry.com Partners with Historical Society of Pennsylvania to Bring the State’s Rich History Online
Family History Leader Adds Millions of State Birth, Marriage and Death Records to its Pennsylvania Vital Record Collection


PROVO, UTAH – (January 26, 2012) – Ancestry.com, the world’s largest online family history resource, announced today that it has added over seven million records detailing more than 300 years of Pennsylvanians’ life history spanning from 1593-1908 to its already expansive collection of Pennsylvania state records. Presented in partnership with the Historical Society of Pennsylvania, these latest additions cover pivotal years, when the Keystone State was not only growing itself, but contributing to the overall development of the country. This comprehensive collection includes details about the lives of everyday Pennsylvanians as well as those who helped forge the state’s rich historical past, with records for the Hershey family, Benjamin Franklin, John Coltrane and many others. 

“Ancestry.com is committed to the continued expansion of our existing collections and increasing the breadth of information for all Americans looking to learn more about their past,” said Josh Hanna, Executive Vice President and General Manager, Ancestry.com. “Pennsylvania was a crucial state during the formation of our country and these records detail the daily lives of its citizenry during these critical years. We look forward to continuing our work with the Historical Society of Pennsylvania, and allowing people to learn more about this state’s rich past.”

Research conducted by Harris Interactive within the United States revealed that four in five Americans have an interest in learning about their family history and three out of four Americans claim that knowing their family history is important to them. Working with the Historical Society of Pennsylvania, Ancestry.com is easing the burden of those with Pennsylvania roots who want to learn more about their family history by bringing records that were traditionally created and maintained locally, online. Research that previously required countless hours of time, finances and travel to make discoveries can now be done with the click of a mouse.

As the foundation of family history research, civil vital records – recordings of births, deaths and marriages – serve as an essential tool for the millions of Americans who are beginning or continuing their family history research. The newest vital record additions, containing information from each county in the state of Pennsylvania, include:

  • Pennsylvania, Births, Church and Town Records, 1593-1708: The documents in this database contain records from churches, funeral homes, cemeteries, newspapers, historical societies, as well as personal records and other various sources.
  • Pennsylvania, Naturalizations, 1794-1908: This database contains records created as immigrants applied for U.S. citizenship through Pennsylvania courts. They include petitions for citizenship, certificates of citizenship, court naturalization lists, country of origination and more.

“The Historical Society of Pennsylvania decided to partner with Ancestry.com to make more than seven million of our vital records more accessible to family historians,” said Kim Sajet, president and CEO of the Historical Society of Pennsylvania. “Through this partnership, our records will reach millions of people who are searching for their ancestors. The vital records we have posted to Ancestry.com are just a small portion of the genealogical records here at the Historical Society of Pennsylvania. We welcome anyone interested in family history to visit our library in Center City Philadelphia.”

These new vital record databases are available to current Ancestry.com subscribers and can be found at www.ancestry.com/vitals. As always, Ancestry.com is free of charge for 14 days to all new users.

About Ancestry.com (www.Ancestry.com)
Ancestry.com Inc. (Nasdaq:ACOM) is the world's largest online family history resource, with more than 1.7 million paying subscribers. More than 8 billion records have been added to the site in the past 15 years. Ancestry users have created more than 30 million family trees containing over 3 billion profiles. In addition to its flagship site www.ancestry.com, Ancestry.com offers localized Web sites designed to empower people to discover, preserve and share their family history.

About the Historical Society of Pennsylvania
Founded in 1824 in Philadelphia, the Historical Society of Pennsylvania (HSP) is one of the oldest historical societies in the United States. It is home to some 600,000 printed items and more than 21 million manuscript and graphic items. Its unparalleled collections encompass more than 350 years of America’s history—from its 17th-century origins to the contributions of its most recent immigrants. The Historical Society is one of the largest family history libraries in the nation, has preeminent printed collections on Pennsylvania and regional history, and offers superb manuscript collections renowned for their strength in 17th-, 18th-, and 19th-century history. The Historical Society’s remarkable holdings together with its educational programming make it one of the nation’s most important special collections libraries: a center of historical documentation and study, education, and engagement.



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