Archive for December, 2011

Holiday Competition

Wednesday, December 21st, 2011

MyHeritage is having great Holiday Competition – Join in the fun by following the details found HERE on the MyHeritage Blog.

MyHeritage Holiday CompetitionHappy Holidays

MyHeritage releases Family Tree Builder Version 6.0

Wednesday, December 21st, 2011

Family Tree Builder Version 6.0

Today, - the parent company of - released version 6.0 of its popular free family software, Family Tree Builder. There have been more than 28 million downloads of FTB.

WorldVitalRecords is excited to be included in this release as our data is now searchable from within the software. Users can search for matches in our database of more than 4 billion records.

CEO Gilad Japhet said about FTB6:  “Packed with exciting new features, Family Tree Builder adds color and depth to family history research for professionals and beginners alike. We’re proud to have developed the industry’s most comprehensive and feature-rich software, and, true to our mission of bringing family history to the masses, we’ll continue to keep it free for all to use.”

What’s New in Version 6.0?  (Highlights – read full details here)

• Automatic Historical Record Matches: Family Tree Builder 6.0 automatically searches for relevant historical records in World Vital Records – a huge database added to the MyHeritage family last month as part of its acquisition of For more details click here.  With billions of birth, marriage, death and census records, plus newspapers, yearbooks and additional historical content – exciting discoveries are awaiting almost everyone.


Capture history in the making and preserve it for future generations with new app.

Friday, December 16th, 2011

What a great day it is!

It’s never been easier to capture history in the making and preserve it for future generations.

I downloaded the just-released MyHeritage Mobile App (for iPad, iPhone and Android devices) to my smartphone. Within minutes, I was browsing my family tree data, as well as uploading and sharing photos.

I understood how awesome family history will be from now on.

When my family and relatives say – “Mark, you’re the genealogist. Where was Grandma born?” –  I’ll whip out my smartphone as if it were a six-shooter. I’ll tap the MyHeritage app, scroll over to Grandma and fill the family in on the rich details of a great woman’s life and legacy. (more…)

Finding, recording Christmas traditions and stories

Tuesday, December 13th, 2011

Finding, recording Christmas traditions and stories

I heard a story recently about a Christmas tree decorated with real candles.  In years’ past that’s how they did it – real trees and real candles – possibly a combustible combination.  It was a great story and one that will be handed down through the family for years to come.

In our home, the tree goes up on or near Thanksgiving and comes down soon after Christmas. We think it looks boring after the gifts are gone.  My wife insists that we begin placing gifts under the tree as soon as possible instead of waiting until Christmas Eve.  Growing up, we waited to place the presents because we kids just had to peek.

Our tree ornaments in my childhood home were re-used each year.  Little clay figures made at school, paper chains, popcorn strands – it was very much a kid’s tree.  As we got older, the decorations became more decorative than historic.  Now, at home, we have no historical ornaments – just those that look nice.  It’s a big decorative tree which puts us all in the holiday mood. (more…)

Using technology to uncover the past

Thursday, December 8th, 2011
My old home - no longer standing

My old home - no longer standing

I just revisited my childhood home – even though it no longer exists.

As I walked Canyon Oaks Drive (Irving, Texas), I approached the cul-de-sac where I biked in summer, wished for snow in winter and raced for the finish line in my teens. (Don’t tell my parents, but we could hit 60 mph and more before we reached the corner. I wondered if the skid marks were still there.) (more…)

The perfect heartfelt gift – 20 minutes a day

Wednesday, December 7th, 2011
The Olsen

The Olsens

The perfect heartfelt gift – 20 minutes a day

My baby sister has been driving her siblings nuts this year as she prepares a special gift for our parents.

For the past few months, she’s been “encouraging” us to write down our childhood memories so she can add them to a photo book she’s creating. It’s a great idea – but also hard work. To me, it’s a time-consuming emotional process to go through your memories, put them down nicely on paper and share them with the world, or at least with the family.  But what better present could there be? You on paper for your children, parents and relatives.

I’d like nothing more than to have my siblings, parents, our only surviving grandparent and more of my extended family write their stories and share them. As I delve deeper into our family history I realize what great knowledge we hold in our minds. It all dies when a relative passes and has not recorded his or her memories, or caring relatives had not succeeded in prying out those memories. (more…)

WorldVitalRecords is now part of MyHeritage!

Thursday, December 1st, 2011

WorldVitalRecords is now part of MyHeritage!

Recently in November, the news was announced that World Vital Records had been acquired by MyHeritage We, at WorldVitalRecords, are very happy to be part of the MyHeritage family.  We’ve been busy communicating this exciting news across the genealogy community in the past 10 days. We shared our excitement and our plans for the future with our friends and partners, who were happy to learn about it.

Read the Techcrunch article about the acquisition here.

Picture – Celebrating a historical moment in family history  Gilad left and Yuval

What is MyHeritage? is the most popular family network on the web. On the website, millions of families around the world enjoy having a private and secure place to explore their family history, share photos and special family moments and keep in touch. With 38 languages supported, nearly one billion family tree profiles and 21 million family trees, and hundreds of millions of family history photos, MyHeritage is uniting families worldwide. To see a short video about the site, click here. Learn more about MyHeritage via their blog.

Anyone around the world can create a free family site on MyHeritage and enjoy the exclusive Smart Matching™ technology which compares the family trees on the website with each other, and reports matches. This technology is able to find long-lost relatives and make intriguing discoveries, allowing users to learn from each other. Among other features, members can design free beautiful family free charts and order professional poster prints to be delivered to family members as holiday gifts. MyHeritage also features a popular free genealogy software program, Family Tree Builder. Download it here.

WorldVitalRecords realized that becoming part of such a larger company like MyHeritage will enable us to join forces and resources, to become a bigger, better and more global organization.

What will happen next?

As stated by Gilad Japhet, CEO of MyHeritage: “Combining close to one billion family tree profiles on MyHeritage with WorldVitalRecord’s massive library of historical data delivers a perfect one-stop-shop for families looking to discover and share their family history.”

We expect – with our new global company – that we won’t only expand our reach but will also greatly increase our content library by adding to the already-rich data collections.
We’ll be working hard to bring you great content and we hope you will find treasures in our content library – which will help you enhance your family trees and share your family stories.

We’re also excited about the social nature of MyHeritage. This is a great fit for us! We bring content and MyHeritage brings excellent family trees with social features.

It is truly exciting that I can now invite my relatives from around the world to join with me in securely sharing our family photos, stories, history, recipes and even play games together, as we work to more closely to unite our family and, at the same time, upload and build on our family tree.

How will this affect current members of WorldVitalRecords?

Your accounts will stay the same and you can continue searching our databases as you’ve always done. Your membership does not change at all. New content will be added, so you will get much more for your current subscription, at no extra cost. In the next few days, we will be sending current WorldVitalRecords members a special offer to join MyHeritage. As we move forward and integrate trees with content, we’ll keep you informed about new benefits and capabilities.
We value our members, and we are delighted that your membership just became part of something much larger. As always, we are here to answer your questions at

The WorldVitalRecords team at MyHeritage

WVR Team
Picture – USA team
from the left – Back row – Justin, Ricky, Spencer
Middle – John, Paul H., Richard, Mark

Front – Christine, Paul B., Lindsey, Tara