Press Release from Ancestry.com
Ancestry.com Publishes for the First Time Online Collection of Twentieth-Century Navy Records
Site Celebrates Veterans Day with Free Access to Entire U.S. Military Records Collection
PROVO, UT (Nov. 11, 2009) – Ancestry.com today added more than 600 Navy cruise books to its online collection of military records to commemorate Veterans Day. This historic effort is the result of an agreement between Ancestry.com, the world’s largest online resource for family history, and the United States Navy. As part of the agreement, Ancestry.com set up scanners on location at the Navy Department Library in Washington, DC, and has spent several months digitizing the cruise books for this occasion.
The collection of Navy cruise books, available exclusively online at Ancestry.com, represents nearly 40 years of cruises following World War II (1950-1988) and chronicles an estimated 450,000 servicemen deployed at sea during that time. Styled after yearbooks, the cruise books include the names and photographs of individuals who served aboard the ship and highlight not only significant milestones that took place during the cruise, but also the day-to-day life on board ship. While not every Navy cruise was documented in a cruise book, the Navy Department Library has on file an estimated 3,500 cruise books, which Ancestry.com plans to digitize and add to this collection over time.
“When Ancestry.com approached the Navy about digitizing these cruise books for online access, we were thrilled,” said Captain Charles Todd Creekman, Jr., USN (Ret.) Executive Director of the Naval Historical Foundation. “A cruise book offers an insider’s perspective into what these sailors experienced, and the strong camaraderie they established, while serving their country at sea.”
The Navy cruise books are part of Ancestry.com’s U.S. Military Collection, which includes 100 million names that span more than three centuries of American military service.
“When you have a family member who has served in the Armed Forces, you can’t help but be proud,” said Tim Sullivan, CEO of Ancestry.com. “This Veterans Day, we’re celebrating America’s military heroes of yesterday and today and invite every American with military roots to see if they can learn something new about their family member on Ancestry.com.”
In honor of America’s military heroes, the entire U.S. Military Collection on Ancestry.com can be searched free through Nov. 13.