14 October 2022
The new partnership will see Ancestry digitise and add thousands of pieces of content from the museums’ rich collection to its website for the very first time.
The partnership, launching in November 2022, enables the digitisation of previously unseen items from the museums’ archive, consisting of photographs of people in military service and those on the homefront, wartime documents, films, audio recordings and wartime objects including enlistment posters, uniforms and tools. The records will reveal wartime stories of people, places and events.
Ancestry has the largest online military collection globally, allowing over three million subscribers to access records and information that will enable them to trace their ancestors back to wartime periods. These records add to Ancestry’s extensive digitised wartime collections, which are growing significantly year-on-year to collectively uncover pivotal moments.
Vicky Stanbury, Imperial War Museums executive director of commercial & operations, said: ‘IWM and Ancestry share a common goal; to deepen our understanding of how periods of war and conflict have impacted people’s lives throughout history. By partnering with Ancestry, and providing broader access to IWM’s rich archives, we hope to enhance the already vast collection of records and documents users can access to allow them to find out even more about how their family members experienced war, whether it be out on the battlefield or supporting efforts on home soil. We are excited to launch this partnership and help to tell stories of wartime which deserve to be heard.’
Recently launched digitised wartime collections available on Ancestry include:
UK, Women's Land Army Index Cards, 1939-1945 - contains records of employment for those who served in the Women’s Land Army during the Second World War. The records detail the name and any known aliasesincluding maiden names, address, employment county, employment place, birthdate, age at enrolment, occupation, date of employment, date of release and membership number
UK, World War II Diaries, 1942-1943 - includes diaries kept by military units of the United Kingdom during the Second World War. The records detail the Commanding Officer's name and rank, regiment or unit, division, diary entry date and diary entry location.
For more information about Ancestry’s wartime records or sign up for a free trial, visit Ancestry.