Top Ancestry Sites

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The top Ancestry sites are used by devoted genealogists constantly. They are the "old reliables" when researching family history. You can count on them to yield valuable results which may be hard to find on other Internet sites.

Ancestry.com

Ancestry.com is a subscription genealogy site which hosts over 4 billion historical records. Many of these records are compiled into searchable databases for ease in quickly locating information of interest. Originally a publishing company, Ancestry launched its website in 1996. Over the years, the company has acquired such notable companies as Genealogy.com, FamilyTreeMaker and RootsWeb.

Top Ancestry Sites

On Ancestry.com

There are several sites on the Ancestry.com website that are particularly popular with genealogists. These features are valuable for a variety of reasons:

  • World War I draft registrations are a database of information that is difficult to find anywhere else.
  • All US censuses include an all-name searchable index and actual digital images of census records.
  • One World Tree is a compilation of over 11 million family trees and over 1 billion individual profiles.
  • Ancestry message boards is a forum for users to help each other and share information.
  • Newspapers and periodicals from over 1,000 publications is one of the largest collections online.

On Genealogy.com

One of the top sites on Genealogy.com is the free GenForum message board. Here users exchange information and help each other with genealogy brick walls. Other posters share information from their family trees in hopes of connecting with a distant cousin.Genealogy.com also has family trees of famous people. Some of those documented include Donald Trump, Brad Pitt and Shania Twain.

On RootsWeb

Other Ancestry properties have popular genealogy sites as well. RootsWeb, a free website, is popular for its extensive message boards and its searchable family trees. The message boards cover every county and state in the United States, as well as foreign countries. There are also message boards on genealogy topics, such as:

RootsWeb WorldConnect family trees have over 575 million individuals listed from volunteer submissions. Each of these trees may be searched if you are looking for one particular individual.

Accessing Ancestry.com

Ancestry charges a two-tiered monthly subscription rate. One rate is the US Deluxe for using all U.S. databases. The other is the World Deluxe, which give subscribers access to the world databases.

Any online genealogist can conduct basic searches on Ancestry for free. While you won't be able to view the details, you can see the index information.

Ancestry does offer a free trial, where users can access the databases for 14 days free of charge. Users can build their own family tree, contact other researchers and view all digital images.

Many public libraries subscribe to Ancestry and allow their patrons use of the subscription on library computers. For the budget conscious, this is a good way to use Ancestry.


Ancestry.com has grown over the years from a family history publisher to a primary web research facility. The top Ancestry sites are the major reasons it maintains its position as one of the leaders in Internet genealogy.

Top Ancestry Sites