Tips from the Pros: Are You Missing Messages? from Michael John Neill

I do not have too much of my own ancestry posted in the public trees at because I do not have time to answer all potential inquiries. However, I do have information posted in two public trees on two of my more problematic families. My hope is that the automatic search at Ancestry will locate something I have overlooked, or that a relative crawls out of the woodwork and contacts me. I’ve already had two relatives send me e-mail messages.

The problem is that my responses are apparently not getting back to them. I have had three messages from different relatives in response to one of my trees. I sent return e-mails almost immediately. No response. Two replied to my tree again a few months later. Again I immediately replied. No response to my reply.

The likely problem? My replies are getting caught in their junk-mail filter. Messages sent in response to trees and messages sent in reply to these responses are not sent directly from the user’s email. They are instead sent a Connection Service at If you have public trees posted or have responded to any trees you can’t just sit and wait for a response and assume that it will automatically get to you. These messages are “automatic” and could get caught in many junk-mail filters.

Messages in response to trees typically come from and replies to a connection request would come from the domain Make certain you have allowed these addresses in any filters you have. If not, you may miss replies to your trees or replies to your inquiries–and we wouldn’t want that to happen!

And if you e-mailed me about William Ira Sargent or Heinrich Trautvetter, please contact me again—I’d love to share information with you!

8 thoughts on “Tips from the Pros: Are You Missing Messages? from Michael John Neill

  1. I sent you an e-mail of an article in which someone with the same name as your civil war ancestor was named in connection with the sinking of the ship carrying prisoners of war back to the north on one of the rivers in the midwest. Unfortunately it has been so long that I don’t remember the civil war magazine or the details but I do know that it was a very notorious explosion on the steamer and many lives were lost. You might want to look into it.

  2. Thank You ! i have experienced the same problem and did not have any idea what was happening. A couple of mine went through and I met a “new ” cousin just up the road from us. He knew another relative that wanted to share family info before she passed on. Great fun visiting with them. Thanks so much for the headsup. Trudi Dido

  3. I tried to put the above address in my address book and the server said it wasn’t valid.

  4. I have also answered inquiries about my family tree on and had no response. Maybe you’ve discovered the reason, Michael. Could ancestry provide a way to solve this problem?
    I was able to paste into my address book in Outlook Express. Hope this will help.


  5. I invited my brother to my tree last week. I got a response that he was invited. However, he never received the invitation. It was the 4th invitation that was received! Also I have forgotten my password a couple of times recently. I requested it be sent to my email address. Ancestry told me they had. I never saw it.

  6. A-N-Y-T-H-I-N-G that comes from gets my attention–perhaps not immediately but I make sure I read each one.

    I do not want to miss anything from Ancestry–who knows what is in the email–perhaps another connection on the Family Tree that I was unaware of. Even if it is in my spambox–I will move it to my inbox if I don’t have time to open it and deal with it right then.

    I learned not to ignor my spam emails when a Winner Notification” from a Sweep that I entered was sorted into the Spambox for me by Yahoo. I ALWAYS check my Spam-mail subject lines because I do not want to miss anything I shouldn’t.

  7. If you tried to copy and paste into your address book or spam filter and it was invalid, make sure you are not copying a space before or after the address. really isn’t a valid email address. Are we supposed to allow all email addresses with the domain? I don’t think my software can do that.

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