LEHI, Utah and SAN FRANCISCO, California, February 28, 2020 - Today at RootsTech, the largest family history technology conference, Ancestry® announced the release of a game-changing content collection of all 36 million of the nation’s available World War II young man’s draft cards, further empowering customers’ journeys of personal discovery. Available now on Ancestry, the completion of this multi-year project with the US National Archives & Records Administration involved digitizing these valuable records to create a fully searchable collection, including color images. The World War II draft card collection adds to more than 24 billion records available on Ancestry.com, including historical records from its archive partners and family tree records, stories, and photographs from the community.
“For more than 30 years, Ancestry has continued its unwavering commitment to family history and helping millions of people discover more about themselves and their past,” said Todd Godfrey, Vice President for Global Content, Ancestry. “This year marks the 75th anniversary of the end of World War II, and today we are excited to announce significant content additions with the digitization of all 36 million of the nation’s available World War II young man’s draft cards. These records add to the largest collection of US military records for family history research. We are proud to continue investing in building the best tools and the largest record collections that answer more questions about your family story and give our members the personal discovery journey they deserve.”
Ancestry has a long-term commitment to records, investing more than $300 million over the past 20 years--and this significant record addition demonstrates the value Ancestry places on historical records in enabling members to make new discoveries. A single draft card can be a very helpful starting point for new users beginning to build a family tree and can lead to more meaningful discoveries due to the rich and unique details they often include, such as physical description, eye color, employer, next of kin, and even why someone was exempt from the draft. Imaging and transcribing the records took nearly 90,000 hours and was done in partnership with the US National Archives & Records Administration and volunteers from FamilySearch.
Ancestry members have built over 100 million family trees with more than 12 billion ancestor profiles and helped create a DNA network of 16 million people. After listening to customer feedback, Ancestry has implemented innovative technology and unveiled significant content collections--such as the World War II Draft Cards--that help answer more family history questions faster, solve members’ most important needs, and provide new ways to deliver even more discoveries. It’s easier than ever to learn your family story by searching existing and new collections--with even more to come.
In 2020, Ancestry will also be releasing New York City Certificate Indexes for Birth, Marriage, and Death records (over 14 million records from 1862-1949). There are also nine state-wide digitization projects and we are unveiling new Naturalization records from six US states. On an international level, this year over 100 million new records will be added from national collections in Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Mexico, and Norway, including more than six million Mexico Catholic records and over 50 million France Census and Birth, Marriage and Death records.
For more information on World War II Draft Cards and additional new content and tools, please visit https://www.ancestry.com/search/collections/2238/.
Ancestry, the global leader in family history and consumer genomics, harnesses the information found in family trees, historical records, and DNA to help people gain a new level of understanding about their lives. Ancestry has more than three million paying subscribers across its core Ancestry websites with an extensive collection of over 24 billion records and has more than 16 million people in the AncestryDNA network. Since 1996, members have created over 100 million family trees and 12 billion ancestor profiles on the Ancestry flagship site and its affiliated international websites. Ancestry offers a suite of family history products and services including AncestryDNA®, Archives®, AncestryProGenealogists®, Newspapers.com™ and Fold3®. AncestryDNA is owned and operated by Ancestry.com DNA, LLC, a subsidiary of Ancestry.com Holdings LLC.