Weekly round-up: Ancestry adds historic Royal Navy records
British sailors wiring a mine, 1914 (Credit: Getty Images)
Records of men who served in the Royal Navy during the First World War have been added to Ancestry. Spanning 1900-1918, the Registers of Seamen’s Services can reveal information such as birthdate, birthplace, vessels and dates of service. Family historians can also click through from the transcriptions to view scans of the original documents, held at The National Archives, which provide additional details such as physical description. Search here (requires subscription).
World's endangered records go online
The British Library has reached a milestone in its mission to save historic records from across the globe. In operation since 2004, the Library’s Endangered Archives programme has now helped archives in 78 countries preserve more than 4 million records, each of which have been digitised and added to eap.bl.uk. To mark 10 years of the Endangered Archives project, the British Library has published a commemorative eBook entitled From Dust to Digital, featuring first-hand accounts of work on 19 of the projects. This can be read for free at openbookpublishers.com/reader/283.
Findmypast's Royal Artillery collection expands
Findmypast has added nearly 10,000 new records to its Royal Artillery Honours and Awards collection. The set contains details of 7,000 Military Crosses awarded between 1916 and 1945, over 1,500 Distinguished Service Orders awarded between 1886 and 1918 and over 1,200 other honours and awards given between 1947 and 2013. Search here (requires subscription).
West London hospital project seeks volunteers
A project marking 100 years of a West London hospital is in search of volunteers. The Royal Brompton & Harefield Hospitals Charity is looking for people to take part in activities that will celebrate the centenary of Harefield Hospital, which was established in 1915 to treat injured Commonwealth soldiers serving in the First World War. Made possible thanks to a £33,000 grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund, volunteer work will include conducting interviews with former patients and staff, to be used in an exhibition at the hospital later this year. To take part, get in touch via rbhcharity.org/centenary-be-involved.
Questions over future of NRS headquarters
The 18th-century home of National Records of Scotland (NRS) should no longer be used for archive services, a report has claimed. Government officials have concluded that Edinburgh’s General Register House, built in 1788, is no longer fit for its original puporse, and plan to relocate the services to a new facility elsewhere in the city. Opponents to the idea have expressed concerns over the future of the building, which is believed to be of great historical and architectural importance. Click here for the full story.
RootsTech attendance climbs to more than 21,000
Statistics from RootsTech 2015 have revealed that 21,927 keen family historians were in attendance – up 68.7 per cent from last year's conference, which welcomed 13,000 visitors. The Salt Lake City event, organised by Mormon genealogy organisation FamilySearch, featured more than 150 exhibitors and a number of star speakers, including Donny Osmond and Laura Bush. Watch videos and see photos here.