Posted by on January 26, 2010 in Site Features, Website

Today, for the first time, you should notice an important email communication delivered to your Messages inbox: the Monthly Update, our monthly newsletter.

Messages link

The online Messages feature is a place where members can anonymously contact one another to share research about common ancestors, as well as where we can send important company communications to all of our members at once. To access the Messages feature, simply click the “Messages” link at the top of any page on

The Monthly Update (the newsletter) is one of the primary ways we communicate new record releases, site updates and company news, as well as provide educational resources in the form of articles, tips and advice from professional genealogists.

We’ve recently heard from some members that they are not receiving the newsletter in their email. While we continue to work hard to ensure the best email deliverability possible and will continue to send the newsletter by email, we also wanted to try delivering the newsletter directly to your Messages inbox on

By delivering the newsletter to you on the site we can make sure each of our members is getting the chance to hear about our latest content releases and site updates. It will also allow you to access the newsletter when you’re on the site and focused on your family history. If you’d like to save a newsletter to refer back to it (for example, for mention of a particular collection you were interested in or tip you wanted to try), the online Messages feature can also serve as a simple organizational tool for you.

As a courtesy to those who don’t want to receive the newsletter online through the Messages feature, we have also provided you with the opportunity to not receive future issues online.  Simply open the newsletter in your Messages inbox and click the “block this user” or “don’t send me messages like this” link.

AMU in Inbox 2

We hope you check out the newsletter in your Messages inbox today and let us know what you think.


  1. Jade

    I received the newsletter.

    I was appalled to see that you are continuing to call a recently added batch of city directories a “1950 Census Substitute.”

    It is not a Census substitute, even for the small minority of USA residents listed in such directories.

    I was hoping you would not continue this fiction, which is quite confusing for the newbies that you are mainly marketing to.

  2. Jade

    The newsletter raves about addition of some Delaware vital records. This is indeed a good thing, but the one entitled “Delaware Marriage Records, 1806–1935” is misnamed. This is due to faulty indexing.

    The one marriage indexed as taking place in 1806 was performed in 1906.

    The one marriage indexed as taking place in 1810 was performed in 1910.

    The one marriage indexed as taking place in 1827 was performed in 1847.

    The one marriage indexed as taking place in 1832 was performed in 1852, the groom’s name was omitted by the indexer (it is quite legible) and bride’s surname misread.

    The one marriage indexed as taking place in 1834 was performed in 1874.

    Many marriages are indexed as taking place in 1839 that were performed in 1859, and the indexer omitted most of the parties’ names. The names are there and readable.

    No marriages actually are in this database that took place in 1839.

    There are no marriages in the database that were performed before 1843. So the database name should commence with “1843,” not “1806.”

    Thank you.

  3. Jade

    The Newsletter announced availability of “Delaware Birth Records, 1800–1932.” Another good thing, if true.

    I checked.

    All of those indexed for early 1800s actually took place decades later:

    27 Sep 100 was 4 Dec 1903.

    4 Nov 1800 was 4 May 1891.

    27 Sep 1800 (another) was 1900.

    4 Aug 1803 was 14 Aug 1903.

    17 Oct 1803 was 1903.

    In general, births were not recorded in DE until 1861.

    However, there were some delayed birth certificates recorded in the 1930s for births as early as 1849.

    Sadly, poor indexing of others gave these early dates:

    The one indexed for 1840 was 1890
    The one indexed for 1842 was 1892
    The one indexed for 1845 did not have a year written in (the indexer took “1.45 AM” to indicate 1845), but was after 1881.
    The one indexed for 1846 was 1946.
    The one indexed for July 1847 was 1897.
    The one indexed for 10 Oct 1847 was 1889.
    The one indexed for 1847 was 1877.
    The one indexed for 22 Oct 1851 was 1891.
    The one indexed for 1853 was 1858.
    One indexed for 1852, three indexed for 1854 and 1855 are all correct 😀
    One of two indexed for 1856 (Vincent) was correct.

    Perhaps someone will be interested enough in accuracy to check for those indexed as occurring between 1804 and 1839 to see what year they actually transpired.

    Possibly someone would find it of interest to look at the purported early Delaware Death Records for similar gross indexing errors.

    All help appreciated.

  4. Sharon Zak

    Intersting….I haven’t received a newsletter in months and nothing was in my messages within ancestry.

  5. Mary Beth Marchant

    I did not get such a newsletter either. And I 2nd the comment about the so called 1950’s census substitute. Call it what it is-a city directory. Not anything close to a census substitute as people living outside the city were not listed nor were children, ages, etc. Trying to draw new subscribers by calling this a census substitute is misleading advertisement completely. I have already seen one comment wanting to know where the 1950 census is. Since the 1950 census will not be released until 2022 many of us will not be here to see it. Maybe I can access it from my wheelchair in my nursing home if I make it the next 12 years.

  6. Joyce Barnett

    I understand the frustrations concerning the term 1950 Census Substitute, however, as a newbie I found wonderful information concerning employment, employers and residence of three of my ancestors. I collected city history at the time of my birth. It became a jumping off point for special memory sharing and story collection from a generation’s sole survivor. So little seems to be out there for more recent events.

  7. David Graham

    Sorry for those who were interested in getting the newsletter online but didn’t receive it. We’re looking into a specific issue that seems to have prevented a small group of members from getting the newsletter. Thanks for your patience.

    As for the discussion about the 1950 Census Substitute, we have another blog post on this topic that you might want to check out:

    The team is also looking into the other feedback shared in comments on this post about our recently added collections.

  8. I’ve been with Ancestry since its inception. I’ve taught various Genealogy Programs at Natl. Archives for groups for 25 years. And have been a Historian for 60 years.
    In my opinion, your “team” who made up the new format for accessing data did no one a favor. It isn’t “User Friendly”, and forces the public to use more keystrokes for accessability to various area’s. I personally, and those in the classes I continue to teach, much prefer your “PREVIOUS” main page under the SEARCH option.
    Plus, your printing procedure has become much more cumbersome.
    Make’s one wonder who were the experts who made the changes to something that was functional!
    Vernon H. Drewa, Cdr., USN (Ret.)

  9. Barry Buckler

    Please add my name to the list of those who are not receiving the Monthly Update, either directly or in my Messages in-box.



  11. Carol A. H.

    I know my comment is late in posting but I was just reading all the posts on this blog because I didn’t get to it sooner.

    Andy, #6: What are you going to do for upgrades? You know the computer you get one year will be obsolete the next.—-:<)—–(I don't have any little icons.) Your post made me laugh out loud.

    i asked ancestry to NOT send the newsletter to my "messages" on my home page. I asked to have them sent to my email. Now, I don't get them either way!

    I looked at "California City Directory" that turned out to be a telephone book!

    Well….it is a directory….of sorts!

  12. Carol A. H.

    #20 Patricia,

    I think you need to cancel your membership personally. I wouldn’t use the blog. Telephone them.

    1-800-262-3787 10 am to 6pm EST

    Follow the recorded menu with regards to button pushing options.

Comments are closed.