28    Dec 20150 comments

Volunteers: We couldn’t do it without you!

At MyHeritage, we understand the importance of connecting families around the globe, regardless of the language, and we are proud that our worldwide network is available in 42 languages.

This achievement has only been made possible with the support of our dedicated community of volunteers.

We thank each of our wonderful translators for this success. They roll up their sleeves and devote their time and skills to helping others discover, preserve and share their family history in their native languages! Continue reading "Volunteers: We couldn’t do it without you!" »

25    Dec 20154 comments

Most Memorable Holiday Gifts: Here are the winners!

We wish you Happy Holidays, Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year  from all of us at MyHeritage!

Our Holiday competition has now officially ended, and we’re ready to announce the winners. We want to take a moment to thank you all for your participation. We can't believe how many responses we received, with so many moving stories of your Christmas memories from over the years.

Without further delay, here are the winners: Continue reading "Most Memorable Holiday Gifts: Here are the winners!" »

21    Dec 20156 comments

Our Stories: Decoding an old letter

South Carolina resident Joia Sokol Thompson shared this story about her sister Carol Sokol, a nurse who lives in Utah.

Carol is the Sokol family genealogist and has been working on their history — particularly their father’s line — since she was 14 in the early 1970s. One of her most prized heirlooms is a letter written to her great-grandfather in 1880. MyHeritage led her to cousins in Canada who decoded the antique letter and uncovered new family connections.

A photo of the gravestone plate of relative Katerina Myskova, discovered through a MyHeritage connection.

Carol’s mother accompanied her husband to visit his relatives and, for years, she recorded family history information. She often asked relatives to complete family group sheets and pedigree sheets that she organized. Continue reading "Our Stories: Decoding an old letter" »

20    Dec 20156 comments

Family Mysteries: Revealed through holiday cards and letters

This is a guest post by genealogist James L. Tanner, a retired trial attorney from Arizona now living in Utah. He is the author of two popular genealogy blogs, Genealogy's Star and Rejoice, and be exceeding glad. With over 30 years of genealogy experience, he currently volunteers at the Brigham Young University Family History Library in Provo, Utah.

Many countries around the world have a tradition of sending greeting cards to friends and relatives during the holiday seasons. In the United States, there is also a strong tradition of sending family letters at the end of the year reviewing important events. In the last 100 years or so, these holiday cards and letters  have also contained photos and valuable information about family members. Sometimes the information contained in a card or on a photo may be priceless and could resolve long-standing family mysteries. A card from a distant relative may identify someone whose relationship you never knew about or even suspected.

"Burns Mont. Ayr Postcard 1899" (Credit: Tony Corsini at en.wikipedia. Licensed under Public Domain via Commons)

Continue reading "Family Mysteries: Revealed through holiday cards and letters" »

18    Dec 201519 comments

10 Spectacular Vintage Holiday Cards

We recently put out a call for your oldest Christmas cards. We received many amazing cards from years gone by.

Here are some beautiful and rare cards, never seen before:

c1905. Sent to us by Barbara Becker. "Christmas post card 2 would have been given to my grandmother when she lived in Edinburgh, Scotland (1904-1909). Teanie was a nickname my mother told me my grandmother did not particularly like. This card appears to have been hand delivered."

Continue reading "10 Spectacular Vintage Holiday Cards" »

16    Dec 20150 comments

Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Do you remember with whom you first saw Star Wars? In many homes, watching the Star Wars movies together has become a family tradition. The franchise  — which has been around for almost 40 years — takes many of us back to a familiar, nostalgic place.

The newest Star Wars film, "The Force Awakens", is being released this week after a 10-year hiatus since the last film.

We are always excited about family history discoveries, which is why we love Star Wars. Anakin Skywalker — who later became Darth Vader — had two children, Luke and Leia. Family connections were severed and, for many years, Luke and Leia did not know who their father was. They were not even aware that they were siblings. Continue reading "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" »

14    Dec 201545 comments

Holiday Competition: Win a tablet!

What was the most significant holiday gift you have ever received? Are there special family memories associated with it?

This is a guest post by Karen, MyHeritage's country manager for Germany.

Everyone knows that feeling of really wanting something with all your heart. For some, it may have been a first bike, a soccer ball, or maybe a special book. The gift that I dreamed of and wished for was a puppy. I remember the many months trying to convince my parents that I would be responsible and take care of a dog with love and affection. My parents kept trying to dissuade me of the idea. They told me the dog would mess up the house, eat our shoes, scratch the door, shed hair everywhere and that we would never again be able to take a vacation. Continue reading "Holiday Competition: Win a tablet!" »

11    Dec 20156 comments

FTM Users: Join MyHeritage and get Family Tree Builder with an Unlimited Size Family Site for Free

As you may have heard, Ancestry® has recently announced that it will no longer sell its Family Tree Maker® (FTM) software as of the end of this month, with further plans to discontinue support for the program.

At MyHeritage, we believe there is still a place in the world for genealogy software, and there is value in the ability to work offline, and enjoy more powerful functionality that many websites cannot offer. We also believe that people should be able to discover and preserve their family history on whatever platform they are comfortable with. That's why we are constantly innovating new technologies and enhancing our website, mobile apps and our Family Tree Builder genealogy software.

MyHeritage Family Tree Builder

So for all disappointed FTM users looking for alternative genealogy software, look no further! MyHeritage Family Tree Builder is the ideal tool to continue growing your family tree, and open new frontiers of research. You'll enjoy its innovative technologies and easy-to-use features.

Family Tree Builder is FREE and you can use it to build a tree of up to 100,000 individuals on your computer. This is not an imposed size limit, but rather a technical limitation, but if you have a larger tree, you can use our new version that's in beta.

Download Family Tree Builder now

Continue reading "FTM Users: Join MyHeritage and get Family Tree Builder with an Unlimited Size Family Site for Free" »

7    Dec 20150 comments

Huge Free Collection of Digitized Books Now Available on MyHeritage!

We've just added an exciting new collection to MyHeritage SuperSearch™, containing over 37 million pages in 150,000 books relevant to family history!

Search Compilation of Published Sources now

The new collection includes tens of thousands of digitized historical books, with actual images of the books' pages, and all their text extracted using Optical Character Recognition. The books span the last four centuries and include family, local and military histories, city and county directories, school and university yearbooks, church and congregational minutes and much more. A vast amount of rich data from diverse publications makes this collection a fantastic source of rare genealogical gems, providing insight into the lives of our ancestors and relatives.

We've added this collection using a new process that adds approximately 250 million pages to SuperSearch™ per year, utilizing a team of 40 curators. The curators examine each digitized book for relevance to family history research, and enhance its meta data if they decide to include it. The collection is sourced from various published texts that are copyright-free, and will be updated from now on several times each year.

The Compilation of Published Sources collection is located in SuperSearch™ under Books & Publications and is free to access. Easily search the collection by any of the following: first name, last name, publication title, publication date, publication place, or keywords. Continue reading "Huge Free Collection of Digitized Books Now Available on MyHeritage!" »

6    Dec 201522 comments

Guess Who?

It can be quite difficult to recognize someone from their childhood photo. Although some years have passed since this picture was taken, see if you can guess who this celebrity is:

Here are some clues to help out:

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