In an exclusive interview today (about 12 minutes ago, actually), MyHeritage Founder and CEO Gilad Japhet told me that genealogy site and family network MyHeritage.com will offer the 1940 US census for free after the National Archives releases the records April 2.
MyHeritage, a company based in Israel and with a US office in Provo, Utah, will provide the 1940 census free at myheritage.com/1940census, www.worldvitalrecords.com/1940census and www.familylink.com/1940census.
As on other websites planning to offer the 1940 census, you’ll be able to browse the record images by place as soon as they’re added to the site.
A searchable index will be added throughout the year, as data from each state are transcribed. The MyHeritage 1940 census index will be created separately from both the FamilySearch/Archives.com/brightsolid 1940 Census Community Project and the Ancestry.com index. A company that specializes in historical transcription will develop the index, which Japhet says will be highly accurate.
Once MyHeritage has launched the index for a given state, you’ll be able to search it by multiple criteria using the MyHeritage SuperSearch, a fast and sophisticated new search engine to be released in April. All searches will take less than half a second, Japhet told me.
The search engine will support 38 languages, the only 1940 census site to offer this feature. You’ll also be able to search the records using the MyHeritage mobile app.
If you have a family tree on MyHeritage.com, the site will automatically match it to 1940 census data as indexes are added and notify you about relevant results. This reduces the need to constantly repeat your searches to see if the index for your ancestor’s state has been added.
The 1940 census is the first of additional historical content to come on MyHeritage. “This is the first serious signal from MyHeritage that it is strongly entering the historical records market,” Japhet says.
Japhet shared a lot of detail with me, so I’ll write another post about MyHeritage’s plans for introducing new, global content and a sophisticated way to search it.
For more 1940 census information, including a free video on using Stephen Morse’s One-Step tool for determining your ancestor’s 1940 enumeration district, see FamilyTreeMagazine.com/info/1940census.