We're happy to announce that MyHeritage is adding millions of Danish historical records to SuperSearch, with some collections dating as far back as the 1600s.
MyHeritage has entered into an agreement with the Danish National Archives to index Census and Parish records from 1646 to 1930, content that was not previously digitized. This partnership will provide access to significant sources of family history information in Denmark and enable MyHeritage users to learn more about their Danish ancestors and the lives they led. The collections follow fascinating periods throughout history such as the Napoleonic wars, liberalism and nationalism of the 1800s, the Schleswig Wars and industrialization.
The records will also illuminate the lives and times of noted Danish historical figures such as Kierkegaard and Niels Bohr. Celebrity fans will be able to look into the family history of Danish Americans such as Scarlett Johansson and Viggo Mortensen for clues on their success. Many of the records will be made available on MyHeritage as early as April 2015 and the rest will be added during the year.
We are pleased to announce two strategic partnerships with Dutch genealogy services, Aldfaer and Coret Genealogy. These partnerships will help advance family history research for anyone with Dutch ancestry and relatives.
Aldfaer, founded in 1998, is a popular free genealogy program produced by the Aldfaer Foundation. As part of the agreement, MyHeritage will support the Aldfaer Foundation to allow its continued operation. Aldfaer users will have access to MyHeritage's unique matching technologies, Smart Matching and Record Matching, receiving automatic discoveries from SuperSearch, MyHeritage's database containing 5.6 billion historical records.
We're excited to announce today an important new collaboration and product integration between MyHeritage and leading personal genetics company 23andMe.
23andMe pioneered autosomal DNA analysis which can find relatives across all ancestral lines, and have built the largest autosomal DNA ancestry service in the world. 23andMe helps people access and benefit from the human genome, offering them a deeper understanding of how their genes relate to their ancestry.
DNA analysis can provide new information about your ancestors and your geographic and ethnic origins. It can also connect you with unknown relatives descending from common ancestors who lived centuries ago, who you may not have discovered otherwise.
MyHeritage's 5.5 billion global historical records, 1.5 billion family tree profiles in 27 million family trees and innovative matching technologies, combined with 23andMe's DNA analysis, will provide users with an integrated and enhanced experience to uncover their family history. Combining documented genealogy - family trees, family stories and family memories - with DNA-based ancestry is the next evolution in family history research. While DNA testing can find relatives from shared ancestors, it's the family trees and historical records that are critical to fully map and understand these connections.
Watch the announcement made live on Bloomberg TV earlier today, in an interview with MyHeritage's Founder & CEO, Gilad Japhet, below:
This weekend, MyHeritage Founder & CEO Gilad Japhet was interviewed on Israel's leading prime time TV news show to discuss MyHeritage and some of its pro bono projects. These include discovering heirs for unclaimed assets confiscated in WWII, returning looted art to its rightful owners and our global crowdsourcing project with BillionGraves to digitally preserve the world's cemeteries.
Our technologies are helping millions of families around the world discover more about their history. We're happy to take our mission several steps further by proactively initiating and executing important projects that have the potential to make the world a better place. Watch the video clip with English subtitles below:
We're proud of our motto to not only do well, but also do good, and we will strive to continue in this direction in the years ahead.
We work hard to provide greater access to family history information and so were thrilled to be awarded the Presidential Citation at the FGS (Federation of Genealogical Societies) conference this past weekend, along with BillionGraves, for our partnership in promoting the preservation of international burial locations.
The Federation of Genealogical Societies was established in 1976 and represents more than 500 member genealogy and history societies, including over a half-million individual members. You can learn more about FGS in our genealogy society spotlight blog post.
Gravestones are a great resource for family history investigation and a useful tool to learn more about your ancestors. They provide detailed information such as names, dates of birth and death and often describe personality. However, natural wear and tear means that these important family history sources need to be preserved before it’s too late. Together, MyHeritage and BillionGraves launched a global initiative to digitize cemeteries and gravestones to preserve these gravestones by making them accessible for free online to millions to aid in their family history research.
Watch the video below to hear MyHeritage Founder and CEO Gilad Japhet explain the tremendous importance of this project and the value of gravestones for genealogy.
Today we are pleased to announce that MyHeritage has reached an exciting milestone: we've surpassed 5 billion historical records!
It has taken only two years for MyHeritage to build this treasure trove of historical information demonstrating that MyHeritage is one of the fastest-growing and most internationally diverse family history companies in the world.
Earlier this month, the employees of MyHeritage's Israel headquarters visited a cemetery to digitize gravestones using the BillionGraves app.
We documented over 70% of the entire cemetery, over 50,000 images of gravestones, and it was the single largest event of its kind ever held in Israel. Read more about the event here.
We're now releasing a video about this project with footage from our trip to the cemetery. It includes an explanation from MyHeritage Founder and CEO Gilad Japhet, who participated in the trip and who personally digitized some 1,000 gravestones.
He explains the tremendous importance of this global initiative and the value of gravestones for genealogy. Our generation has the necessary tools, and it's our responsibility to get the world's gravestones online before their inscriptions erode. It's a race against time. You can see how easy it is for anyone to get involved and help to preserve these important pieces of family history for future generations.
Watch the video below:
Eighty MyHeritage employees from our headquarters in Israel arrived in full force early Sunday morning to the Segula Cemetery in Petah Tikva, Israel, to digitize gravestones using the BillionGraves mobile application. We felt it was important to practice this ourselves, before we call upon others to join us in this initiative. By gaining hands-on experience, we aimed to create best practices, improve the product and fine-tune methodologies for digitizing cemeteries all around the world in the most efficient manner.
So what brings a large group of young folks with smartphones to a cemetery? We recently announced a global initiative, together with BillionGraves, to digitally preserve the world’s cemeteries. It is important to digitize cemeteries because of the key role that gravestones play in family history and in society in general. Most of the world's cemeteries have never been systematically documented nor has their information made available online. In addition, age and exposure to the elements are rendering gravestones illegible, making this project even more urgent.
We're excited to announce that MyHeritage has teamed up with BillionGraves to launch a global crowdsourcing initiative to digitally preserve the world’s cemeteries.
We're happy to announce that as of this week, you can search 138 million Geni profiles on MyHeritage's SuperSearch.
Soon after acquiring Geni in November 2012, MyHeritage provided Geni's users with Record Matches and Smart Matches powered by MyHeritage. We added this to enable Geni users to benefit from historical records - something that hadn't been available on Geni before - and discover new relatives and ancestors through matches between their tree and the 25 million trees on MyHeritage.
This week we completed reciprocating this benefit for MyHeritage users, and now they are able to search Geni profiles on MyHeritage, and receive automatic matches between their family trees and Geni. It took us some time to add this, because we implemented a robust, real-time "bridge" that constantly updates MyHeritage SuperSearch as changes are made in the tree on Geni. The updates stream to MyHeritage every second but SuperSearch is updated in bulk once a day with all the changes. This prevents information on MyHeritage that originates from Geni from ever becoming out of date.
Now that the Geni profiles are available on SuperSearch, MyHeritage users will start receiving matches with Geni trees. This is a great benefit for users of either service, as both will now be able to expand their trees, find new information, discover new cousins and learn more from each other.