Past Articles

All We Need Is Love: How Your Ancestors Courted Back in the Day

Posted on October 13, 2015 in Family History Month

Courtship: A period when a couple gets to know one another exclusively in order to determine whether they might become engaged or otherwise commit to each other. How did your grandparents and great-grandparents court and fall in love? These days, couples in Western countries usually date casually — though online matchmaking has recently changed the… Read more

Finding a Name: Why Probate Records Are a Gold Mine for African Americans

Posted on October 12, 2015 in Finding Your Roots, Research

  By Henry Louis Gates Jr. and Juliana Szucs, Family Historian for Ancestry Family historians tracing black family ancestries love wills and probate records. Why? Because these seemingly dry and bloodless documents are full of priceless information about our enslaved African American ancestors. Probate records document what people owned, who they loved, and what was… Read more

How the 19th Century’s 1 Percent Lived Large

Posted on October 9, 2015 in Family History Month

When it comes to luxurious living, the upper crust of the late 1800s make today’s “1 percent” seem modest by comparison. Even though modern necessities like indoor plumbing and flush toilets were just starting to make their appearances, the 19th century elite enjoyed luxuries that are still astounding (or confounding) more than a century later.… Read more

The New Ancestry: October 8th Feature Update

Posted on October 8, 2015 in Ancestry.com Site, Australia, Canada, Germany, United Kingdom

Welcome to our weekly update on the new Ancestry website. This week we are rolling out a few new enhancements based on feedback we have received from you over the past couple of months. Feature update: We explored a wide range of use cases on the size and shape of profile photos, and we are… Read more

Drugster? Snobscat? Can you guess these old-time occupations?

Posted on October 6, 2015 in Family History Month, Research

Occupations come and go, and sometimes job names do, too. Here are a few classics you probably won’t be seeing on résumés for the class of 2015: ▶brewster or maltster — maker of ales, beers, and other alcoholic beverages ▶chandler — candle maker; also seller of provisions ▶cooper — barrel maker ▶crocker — pottery maker… Read more

The New Ancestry: October 4th Feature Update

Posted on October 4, 2015 in Ancestry.com Site

This past week our efforts were focused on several “behind the scenes” items on the Ancestry website as well as prepping upcoming features on Media to bring you better and richer experiences. We expect to have an update on more member facing items in our next feature update next week. Top Issues Reported Below is a status on the… Read more

The New Ancestry: September 28th Feature Update

Posted on September 27, 2015 in Ancestry.com Site, Australia, Canada, United Kingdom

Welcome to our weekly update on the new Ancestry website. Last week we posted an article that covered the location issues and the solution we put in place. This week we introduced some exciting enhancements on Family Events in the Facts view. As always, we have also included links to articles and videos at the end… Read more

From Rags to Khaki Britches

Posted on September 21, 2015 in Research

This article was originally published in Ancestry Magazine. From khaki to camo, we look for visual clues to recognize members of America’s military today. But historically, to what extent did the clothes make the military man and woman? Dressed for Success? Every upstart needs a good defense—America included. So when the fledgling colonies were struggling to… Read more

The New Ancestry: September 19th Feature Update

Posted on September 19, 2015 in Ancestry.com Site, Australia, Canada, United Kingdom

Welcome to our weekly update on the new Ancestry website. Last week we posted an article that covered the upcoming feature to show all events on LifeStory. These past couple of weeks most of our efforts have been on a few ‘behind the scenes’ initiatives such as: Media Gallery: photo cropping and other improvements Facts… Read more

The New Ancestry: September 11th Feature Update

Posted on September 11, 2015 in Ancestry.com Site, Australia, Canada, United Kingdom

Welcome to our weekly update on the new Ancestry website. Last week we posted an article that covered the upcoming feature of photo cropping. This coming week we will roll out a new enhancement on LifeStory. As always, we have also included links to articles and videos at the end of this post that will help… Read more