Tuesday, June 30, 2009


Leading Family History Web Site Spotlights Members Who Have Discovered Family Connections in Five National Television Ads

PROVO, UTAH – June 29, 2009 – Ancestry.com, the world’s largest online resource for family history, will showcase the stories of five Americans who have made amazing family history discoveries through its Web site in My Story, a new advertising campaign launching today. Tapping into the powerful tradition of storytelling, the new campaign seeks to convey the possibilities of discovering yourself through family history and inspire Americans everywhere to dig deeper into their own heritage.

The new campaign will run for at least the next 12 months. The five 15, 30 and 60 second television ads will spotlight Ancestry.com members from across the country and their heartwarming family history connections, including a New Yorker who found answers about a father he wanted to better understand and a woman from Chicago who is opening up a restaurant with a cousin after exploring how far the cooking talent extended in her family tree. The TV spots will appear on popular cable networks and channels such as AMC, CNN, Fox News, History Channel, Lifetime Movie Network and Hallmark, among others.

Each member’s story and TV commercial will be available at Ancestry.com beginning today, and an online campaign featuring a variety of “Who Will You Discover?” banner ads will begin on June 29.

“What is truly amazing is that these miraculous discoveries are happening every day,” said Cheyenne Richards, vice president of marketing, Ancestry.com. “We literally went through thousands of incredible member-submitted stories before we chose these five. That’s the inspiration behind our new My Story campaign – to convey how life-changing a family history discovery can be.”

The new My Story campaign was designed to resonate with all adults, particularly those ages 45 and older. “One’s motivation to discover their heritage tends to grow over time, but curiosity about family history is a basic human desire,” continued Richards. “We expect these new ad spots will inspire people of all ages to learn more about their heritage. It’s very important to us to help people understand how easy it can be to have such a meaningful experience.”

My Story Television Spots

Ancestry.com Creative Director Shawn Perkins worked closely with Director Jeffrey DeChausse at Boxer Films (Los Angeles) to create the five spots. The new television spots feature the following stories:

·A New Yorker Finds Answers about His Father – Alton Woodman (White Plains, N.Y.) never knew much about his dad, who passed away when Alton was just 14 years old. Turning to Ancestry.com, Alton found his father in a 1920 census record as a 14-year-old himself, and discovered that he was attending an orphanage. To help connect the dots, Alton got in touch with a representative from the orphanage and received a package that offered a more complete picture of his father’s childhood.
·One Man Discovers His Great Grandfather was a War Hero – Cary Christopher (Pittsburgh and San Diego) always wondered about his German great grandfather, who disappeared after a short-lived marriage to Cary’s great grandmother ended in divorce. After 40 years of futile searching, Cary discovered his great grandfather in a World War I draft registration card on Ancestry.com. It turned out his great grandfather had immigrated to the United States before World War I, became a U.S. citizen and rose to the rank of Captain in the U.S. Merchant Marines, where he was killed by a torpedo fired by a German submarine during World War II.
·South Florida Man Connects Father to His Own Mother – Jim Lane’s (Key Biscayne, Fla.) father never knew his mother, who died when he was an infant. Through historical records and member connection services on Ancestry.com, Jim discovered relatives who sent him pictures of his grandmother, and for the first time, Jim’s father was able to see a photograph of his mother.
·Chicago Cook Meets Like-Minded Cousin – When caterer Peggy McDowell (Chicago) began researching the cooking talent in her family tree, she had no idea she would end up going into business with a long-lost cousin. Through searching records on Ancestry.com, she connected with her cousin, who also shares her passion for cooking. Together, they’re opening a soul food restaurant in Chicago’s Hyde Park.
·Washington Woman Confirms Father’s Passing – Cathryn Darling (Olympia, Wash.) had many unanswered questions about her father, who had disappeared when she was eight years old after her parent’s divorce. After searching obituary records on Ancestry.com, Cathryn learned her father died as a fisherman while at sea in Oregon in 1970, and she recently held a memorial service in his honor.

Ancestry.com recently announced that its members have added more than 1 billion people to more than 10 million user-generated family trees on the site since the tree-building and -sharing tools debuted in July 2006. For more information, or to build your family tree, visit www.ancestry.com/.

Ancestry.com and The Generations Network Web sites:


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