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Latest News on DNA Ethnicity and Family Heritage

French Man Discovers Half-Sister in Texas and Finds Their German Roots

2020. december 2., szerda 9:15:09

With many people around the world stuck at home last spring, many turned to genealogy and began delving into their roots. Gian Carlo David-Faliva, a 74-year-old MyHeritage user from France, jumped on the bandwagon and started to dig deep into his family’s past, with a mission of finding his father’s family. After so many years not knowing what had become of his father, thanks to his MyHeritage DNA results, his family mystery was finally solved. 

Born in 1946 in Turin, Italy to a French mother who had met an American soldier at the end of World War II in Germany, Gian Carlo knew almost nothing about his father. He knew that his first name was Joseph, that his last name was Richer ’or Reicher’ and that his division had left Turin to continue the war in Germany when his mother was only two months pregnant. From that point on, his mother never saw Joseph again. 

Gian Carlo’s mother, Ida, at the end of WWII

Life took its course, and his mother Ida returned to France, and married a few years later. Gian Carlo was adopted by his new stepfather. Gian Carlo in turn married and had children, but he always felt a big void, not knowing the identity of his biological father. He wondered if the American soldier was still alive and out there somewhere. When the global pandemic hit, Gian Carlo finally had the time to dedicate to researching his father’s whereabouts. 

He recalled seeing a story on TV about DNA testing, he decided it was time for him to try one for himself. He purchased a MyHeritage DNA test and from there, things moved quite quickly. 

One month after sending in his DNA sample, Gian Carlo received an email that his results were ready. Besides his Ethnicity Estimate, which in and of itself was fascinating, Gian Carlo was shocked to see some close DNA Matches with MyHeritage users from the U.S. His closest matches included a first cousin or nephew with 13% shared DNA, and another cousin with 11% shared DNA. 

Gian Carlo jumped on the chance to contact his matches, and he wrote to both. While his message to the first cousin/nephew went unanswered, he did hear back from the cousin, Beverly, who lives in Texas. After several exchanges back and forth, Gian Carlo and Beverly decided to work together to determine their exact relationship. 

Beverly, Gian Carlo’s newfound cousin

Beverly’s mother’s maiden name is Reichert and so Beverly decided to investigate the story of one of her mother’s uncles, Joe Reichert, who died in 1996 and about whom she had known very little.

Beverly spoke with Joe’s daughter Jo Ann, also a native of Texas. After their conversation, she was convinced that Jo Ann was Gian Carlo’s half-sister. It turned out that their DNA had already been matched, as Gian Carlo’s highest match, of 13% shared DNA was to none other than Jo Ann’s son! Jo Ann then took a test herself, which confirmed the family link with Gian Carlo: the two have 27.4% shared DNA!

Jo Ann and Gian Carlo discovered that they were both born in the same year, 9 months apart. Gian Carlo learned that his father, Joe Reichert, had been deceased for a long time, but was finally able to see photos of him and find the family resemblances. 

Joe Reichert (left), and son Gian Carlo (right)

Since first discovering their relationship, Gian Carlo has been in regular contact with both Beverly and Jo Ann. He hopes to travel to meet his Texas family in the near future, when it is easier for them to travel to one another. 

After receiving basic information about his father’s family, Gian Carlo was able to trace his family back to 18th century Germany and the journey of the family as they emigrated to Russia before arriving in the United States. As the family historian, he’s now able to teach his newfound American family about their German roots! 

Gian Carlo is thrilled to have found a welcoming family, answering a lifetime of questions, and helping him make peace with his heritage. “Thank you very much to the MyHeritage team who do a very good job and make people like me happy.” 

In anticipation of his big trip to the U.S. which will likely be loaded with many emotions, Gian Carlo is currently improving his English. He also continues to expand his family tree, in the search of even more relatives!

If you have unanswered questions about your own heritage, consider taking a MyHeritage DNA test today. 

The post French Man Discovers Half-Sister in Texas and Finds Their German Roots appeared first on MyHeritage Blog.

Don’t Miss This Crazy Cyber Monday Deal!

2020. november 29., vasárnap 13:49:24

It’s Cyber Weekend around the world, and at MyHeritage, the deals are definitely heating up! We’re selling MyHeritage DNA kits for the lowest price EVER!

Take advantage of our incredible Cyber Monday Deal now! 

The holiday season is almost upon us, and while our seasonal celebrations are going to have to look a little different this year, the amazing savings on gifts for loved ones are better than ever.

Order your MyHeritage DNA kits for the LOWEST PRICE EVER, plus free shipping on 2+ kits — don’t miss out on this deal, grab it before it’s gone!

The post Don’t Miss This Crazy Cyber Monday Deal! appeared first on MyHeritage Blog.

MyHeritage Cyber Monday Sale — Huge Savings on MyHeritage DNA!

2020. november 28., szombat 9:10:13

Shopping for the holidays certainly can be stressful. Here at MyHeritage, we’re going to make it easy for you by selling our at-home DNA kits for the lowest price ever! Take advantage of our Cyber Monday sale and give your loved ones an exciting gift that helps them learn more about themselves and find long lost relatives. DNA kits are always an exciting gift for people of all ages.

Order your kits today!

Are you related to people in a country far, far away? Have you been searching for your biological mother or father? Did you have a family member that played a significant role in the military? Many of your questions may be answered with a simple swab of the cheek.

MyHeritage DNA in action

The holidays are a time for togetherness, and what better way to bring your family closer this holiday season than by discovering your origins with a MyHeritage DNA test!

Johannes Nielsen knows firsthand about the togetherness you can achieve through MyHeritage DNA. Growing up in South Korea, he knew that he was adopted as a baby — and that was all the knowledge that he had of his roots. He had no insight into who his biological family was or where his roots were first laid down.

When Johannes’ MyHeritage DNA test results came back, he discovered that he had a distant cousin in the United States who appeared to have a large family tree. This cousin, although she knew nothing about Johannes’ story, was eager to help him find the answers that he was looking for. She connected him to her maternal grandfather’s side of the family, which gave Johannes a better picture of the family tree.

He then discovered that there was an even closer DNA Match that got him closer to finding his biological parents.

This led him to discover a possible father, who unfortunately passed away in 2006, and his mother, who was still alive and well in the United States. Finally, after 43 years, Johannes met his mother for the first time in an emotional reunion.

The gift of a growing family

Give your friends and loved ones the ultimate gift this year — the possibility of growing closer to their roots and gaining a deeper connection to their family. 

Our Cyber Monday sale is now live, so don’t miss out and order today. MyHeritage DNA kits are available for the lowest price EVER, plus free shipping on 2+ kits! 

Order your kits today!

The post MyHeritage Cyber Monday Sale — Huge Savings on MyHeritage DNA! appeared first on MyHeritage Blog.

Huge Black Friday Deal Ends Today!

2020. november 27., péntek 11:57:31

This holiday season, give your loved ones a holiday gift they will cherish for generations to come, a MyHeritage DNA kit! With powerful insights into their ethnic origins, your loved ones will be amazed by what they discover and they may even find relatives they never knew existed! Take advantage of free shipping when you order 2 or more kits, and take the stress out of holiday shopping by choosing to have your kits gift wrapped at the checkout.

Our Black Friday deal ends today. Order your kits now!

If you’ve been considering purchasing a MyHeritage DNA kit for a loved one, there’s no time like the present. This holiday season, open the door to powerful new discoveries. When you purchase a MyHeritage DNA kit for a family member, you’re doing more than helping them learn about where they come from. You’re helping them learn about the common history you share, strengthening the bond between you in a profound way.

Don’t miss out on this fantastic deal — Order MyHeritage DNA kits for everyone on your list!

Happy shopping!

The MyHeritage Team

The post Huge Black Friday Deal Ends Today! appeared first on MyHeritage Blog.

A Holiday Surprise: Descendants Get 100-Year-Old Holiday Cards From Their Ancestors

2020. november 26., csütörtök 20:44:47

Oh the joy of receiving personalized Seasons Greetings from family and friends! This stalwart tradition of connecting with loved ones around the holidays may have evolved over the years, but the sentiment to share holiday cheer has endured.

Still looking to spread holiday joy this year? Our MyHeritage DNA kits are the perfect gift for everyone on your list. With our Black Friday DNA Sale, you can give this wonderful gift and enjoy our lowest price ever! 

Though relatives and friends may not be gathering this year as they normally would, the COVID-19 era has taught us that there are many other meaningful ways to connect. While it’s amazing to have the technology to speak to loved ones with a laptop or phone, others might opt for the tried-and-true holiday cards that were once the standard for their ancestors. Such cards may not allow us to hear the voices or see the faces of the cards’ senders and recipients, but their words live on and may be cherished for years to come. .  

Here are some holiday cards from yesteryear that MyHeritage researchers found, and the stories that were unearthed as a result.

Reaching Out to A Sister:

Dear sister, I hope this finds you all well. We are baking for you for Christmas. Don’t forget. Alice

This postcard was sent 100 years ago on November 23, 1920, two days before Thanksgiving, from Alice Shaw of Zanesville, Ohio, to her sister Ada Patterson in Granville, Ohio, which was 28 miles away. 

Digging into the records

Using census records, MyHeritage researchers learned more about the sisters: Born six years apart to Oliver and Emily Hampshire, the two grew up in Granville with nine other siblings. Ada was six years older than Alice and married at the age of 34 but had no children. Alice married at age 19 and gave birth to 12 children.  

Here is a page from the 1880 U.S. Census found in MyHeritage’s historical record collections that lists Oliver and Emma Hampshire and three of their children, including Ada. 

[Credit: MyHeritage 1880 U.S. Census Record]
[Credit: MyHeritage 1880 U.S. Census Record]
Here you can find a close-up of the rows listing the Hampshire family:

The Research team tracked down some beautiful old photos of Ada and Alice. Using the MyHeritage Photo Enhancer, the team brought Alice and Ada’s faces into focus, allowing us to see their remarkable resemblance.

Alice Hampshire Shaw as a child
Alice Hampshire Shaw as a child
Alice Hampshire Shaw as an adult
Alice Hampshire Shaw as an adult
Ada Hampshire Patterson
Ada Hampshire Patterson

The contrast between their household sizes must have been striking, especially during the holidays. Those of us who are celebrating Thanksgiving alone this year will surely relate to what Ada might have been feeling 100 years ago at her table set for two. Perhaps this was what prompted Alice to wish a happy Thanksgiving to her sister with a holiday card, and to remind her that they would be together for Christmas. 

Reconnecting with the Descendant

The postcard provided clues that painted a story of family ties, enabling the Research team to locate the family’s descendant. Susan Kinney, 67, of Gahanna, Ohio, was astonished to discover that MyHeritage had identified Alice as her great-grandmother, and Ada as her great-grandmother’s sister. She was also amazed to learn that her grandmother, Dorothy, had 11 siblings. 

A page from the MyHeritage 1920 U.S. Census collection lists Alice and James Shaw, along with 7 of their children, including Susan’s grandmother, Dorothy.

[Credit: MyHeritage 1920 U.S. Census Records]
[Credit: MyHeritage 1920 U.S. Census Records]
Here you can find a close-up of the rows listing the Hampshire family:

On this page of the 1930 U.S. Census, the Shaws are listed with their 5 youngest children.

 [Credit: MyHeritage 1930 U.S. Census Records]
[Credit: MyHeritage 1930 U.S. Census Records]
Here you can find a close-up of the rows listing the Hampshire family:

Their family tree, created on MyHeritage, shows the relationship between Ada, Alice, and Susan.

The Shaw Family Tree on MyHeritage (Click to zoom)
The Shaw Family Tree on MyHeritage (Click to zoom)

Kinney was excited to see the postcard, and admitted that she knew little about her family history.  

“We are a very small family,” she said. “I don’t know of any descendants of these people. I didn’t even know my grandmother had all these brothers and sisters. I only knew one brother. 

“It’s just fascinating to me that I never knew about all these relatives.” 

A Special Bond with Grandma: 

Dear Grandmother,

Wouldn’t you like to have a big fat turkey like that. Good by[e]

Yours truly

Bernice B.

This colorful holiday card was sent in Wisconsin 100 years ago, on November 23, to Mrs. E. M. Baer from her granddaughter Bernice. It took some investigating, however, to uncover the rest of the story. 

Unearthing the card’s history

Using census records, our researchers were able to build a family tree on MyHeritage and determine that Elizabeth M. Baer had a granddaughter named Bernice Margaret Burns. In particular, the researchers found Bernice’s name, birthdate, and place of birth recorded in a 1906 book found on MyHeritage, Genealogy of the Bear Family and Biographical Record of the Descendants of Jacob Bear, 1747–1906.

[Credit: MyHeritage]
[Credit: MyHeritage]
Bernice was born in 1905, meaning that she would have been 15 when she sent the holiday card to her grandmother. Perhaps Bernice liked the colors of the turkey, or perhaps the woman’s face on the postcard resembled her grandmother’s. 

Or perhaps — like many of us this year — she missed her grandmother at Thanksgiving, and reached out to her in the only way she could. 

Meeting the Descendants

MyHeritage user Hannah Bartlett, 28, a student at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, was amazed to see the postcard written by her great-grandmother Bernice. She connected researchers to her aunt, Dawn DeRidder Shumway, 63. 

Here’s Hannah Bartlett’s family tree on MyHeritage. Elizabeth, Bernice, Dawn, and Hannah are circled in red.

Bartlett Family Tree on MyHeritage
Bartlett Family Tree on MyHeritage

Dawn had wonderful memories of her grandmother Bernice. In particular, Dawn recalled her generosity. 

“She would give the grandchildren presents and money at Christmas,” she said. 

Bernice Margaret Burns
Bernice Margaret Burns

Looking Ahead

If there’s one thing that can be learned from these holiday cards, it’s that traditions can still be maintained, even though we might be celebrating differently. This year, despite the pandemic, we will still reach out to our loved ones—perhaps even with postcards like these. 

If you are looking to give the gift of family history this year, consider giving a MyHeritage Gift Membership. The gift membership is now on sale for 50% off and gives the recipient full access to the MyHeritage Complete plan, which includes all MyHeritage tools and features and 12.7 billion historical records. 

To look at all of MyHeritage’s offerings for your loved ones this year, check out our Holiday Gift Guide.

May we someday look back on this year and remember a time when, despite being forced to distance ourselves from family and friends, our connections endured. 

The post A Holiday Surprise: Descendants Get 100-Year-Old Holiday Cards From Their Ancestors appeared first on MyHeritage Blog.

Spanish Flu Retail Opportunities

2020. november 26., csütörtök 7:28:40

Months after being thrust into a global pandemic, one thing is certainly clear: our lives have changed. People have lost their jobs, whole industries have been placed on hold indefinitely, and many businesses have shuttered their doors, much like life during the Spanish Flu. 

Others, however, are realizing unexplored opportunities for their businesses in this unprecedented time, a phenomenon that also occurred during the Spanish Flu. The MyHeritage research team unearthed some newspaper records from 102 years ago in our treasure trove of 12.7 billion historical records. What did they discover? As the saying goes, “There’s nothing new under the sun.”

New ways of shopping

Today, online shopping has become the clear alternative to shopping in person. When possible, those quarantining at home are shopping with their computer mouse in a few easy clicks. In 1918, as the Spanish Flu ravaged, businesses encouraged folks to “stay at home, shop by phone”. 

A November 1918 ad from The Los Angeles Times recommended that people call in their orders by phone instead of coming to the shops. 

Spanish Flu Retail: A November 1918 ad from The Los Angeles Times

Bandwidth issues 

But telephone services in 1918, just like the internet in 2020, suffered from overload. People were asked to “take responsibility and to use it carefully”. This can be likened to today’s internet overload issues, with many finding themselves confined to their homes. The EU asked Netflix to limit services to protect broadband infrastructure. 

An ad for the Bell Telephone Company of Canada from The Ottawa Citizen, on October 15, 1918, called people to use the telephone only when absolutely necessary. 

Spanish Flu Retail: The Ottawa Citizen, on October 15, 1918

At-home entertainment

These days, millions of people around the world are using TV streaming services such as Netflix for at-home entertainment. In 1918, while people spent more time at home, there was no TV, and people listened to music. 

An ad for Kent’s Edison store from October 1918, called for people to spend their time at home listening to music with the New Edison phonograph. “Escape the Flu! By spending the evening in your own home with a NEW EDISON, the phonograph with a soul!”Spanish Flu Retail: An ad for Kent's Edison store from October 1918

This Morell Tilson & Sons shop’s ad from The Evening Start, October 9, 1918, used a different tactic to market the Edison. They highlighted that with public concerts canceled, the Edison would be a great replacement. “You can attend concerts of grand opera, light opera, sacred music of the fine old songs without running any risk of contracting influenza.”

Spanish Flu Retail: The Evening Start, October 9, 1918

Lysol hysteria

Early on in the Covid-19 pandemic, sanitation products were sold-out and hard to come by. In 1918, just like today, sanitation products were in high demand. There was no such thing as hand sanitizers that kill 90+ percent of germs. Sylpho Nathol was used for years before the start of the Spanish Flu to fight infantile paralysis and polio. During the Spanish Flu, it was marketed as the best product to kill the virus.  

This ad, published in The Boston Post on November 20, 1918, advertised the “germ killer” as the best precaution: “Today you must use every precaution to eliminate all sources of infection.”

Spanish Flu Retail: The Boston Post on November 20, 1918

Many different health products were presented by various companies as the number one drug to prevent the disease. A product named NR (Nature’s Remedy) for digestion promised to do the job. “Nothing you can do will so effectively protect you against the Influenza or Grippe epidemic as keeping your organs of digestion and elimination active and your system free from poisonous accumulations.”

Spanish Flu Retail: Daily Capital Journal, Nov 19, 1918

Horlik’s malted milk offered the right diet milk to fight influenza (Daily Capital Journal, Nov 19, 1918): 

Spanish Flu Retail: Daily Capital Journal, Nov 19, 1918
Peruna, patented medicine that was used by many Americans and endorsed by 50 U.S. congressmen, was advertised as the best medicine against the flu. 

Spanish Flu Retail: Peruna

Turning lemons into lemonade

Just like today, during the Spanish Flu in 1918, many businesses were trying to make the best of a difficult situation and use it to their advantage

This advertisement claims that “One of the best preventatives to keep away the ‘Flu’ is to provide yourself with good warm underwear”: 

This one claims that eating well will make sure that you fight the flu properly:

Global pandemics lead to economic strife for many, but also bring about an abundance of creativity and adaptation in the fight to survive economically. 

Search our newspaper collections to discover the stories of your own ancestors, or order a MyHeritage DNA kit today, at our special Black Friday prices!  

The post Spanish Flu Retail Opportunities appeared first on MyHeritage Blog.

Huge Black Friday Sale on MyHeritage DNA Starts Today

2020. november 22., vasárnap 8:37:49

We just couldn’t wait, and our HUGE Black Friday Sale is on! Give yourself or your loved ones the ultimate gift this holiday season a MyHeritage DNA kit, now for the lowest price EVER!

In addition to the amazing low price, we’re offering FREE shipping on 2+ kits, and a beautiful gift wrap option.

Order your kits today!

Combined with our family trees, historical record collections, and matching technologies, MyHeritage DNA enables you to gain a deeper understanding of your ethnic origins and create an even clearer picture of your family’s past! 

The perfect gift for the whole family

Taking a DNA test and getting your results back sure is exciting for an individual, but it’s even more exciting when the whole family participates. If you’ve already taken a DNA test, you might be wondering who you should test next to help build your family tree. Although everyone in your family shares DNA, the more people who test, the clearer the picture of your family’s history becomes.

We always suggest starting with your oldest relatives. By testing your grandparents, or great-grandparents, you can get as close as possible to the roots of your family, making MyHeritage DNA a gift of knowledge that you can hand down from generation to generation. 

MyHeritage helps make new family connections

Many family reunions have been made possible thanks to MyHeritage DNA tests, and they continue to give hope to people who are still searching for relatives.

MyHeritage recently helped a young woman named Seraine Danner unite with her birth father for the very first time. When Seraine was quite young, she discovered that she had no idea who her birth father was. After purchasing a MyHeritage DNA kit and getting her results, she found that she had a first cousin, once removed. 

Seraine contacted her newfound cousin and together they discovered that Seraine’s biological father was only a phone call away. The father and daughter pair now talk every day!

MyHeritage Black Friday Sale

Take the stress out of holiday shopping and gift wrapping this year and let MyHeritage handle everything. Order now to take advantage if the incredible low price and get ready for a holiday season full of happy family members!

Happy shopping!

The post Huge Black Friday Sale on MyHeritage DNA Starts Today appeared first on MyHeritage Blog.

MyHeritage Helps Man Track Down a Family’s Descendant to Discuss the Past

2020. november 19., csütörtök 11:08:45

MyHeritage enables millions of users to discover their past and empower their future, and we have played a part in many incredible stories. Recently, a German MyHeritage user, Thomas Edelmann, spoke with us and requested help. His motive? To make a long-overdue apology. Today, we’ll be sharing Edelmann’s story, a moving tale that was recently featured on CNN

Born in Germany over 25 years after the Allies defeated Hitler, Thomas Edelmann found himself on MyHeritage in search of someone he had never met and that he never knew existed. He was in search of someone connected to a story dating all the way back to 1930s Nazi Germany. Upon contacting MyHeritage, Edelmann explained that his grandfather, a man named Wilhelm Edelmann, was the owner of a hardware store that had been located near Northern Bavaria in Bad Mergentheim. As a retiree, Edelmann had found himself interested in genealogy and used MyHeritage on a regular basis to build his own family tree.

Thomas Edelmann

Growing up, Edelmann had always heard rumors about the family business. He had suspicions that the business may have been Jewish founded before being confiscated by the Germans during WWII. Uncovering Nazi Gestapo tax records, Edelmann was able to recently confirm this fact. As it turns out, the Jewish founders had been forced to sell the business back in 1938, following the Nuremberg Laws. In these same records, Edelmann was able to find the name of the original owner, a man by the name of Benjamin Heidelberger. Upon making this discovery, Edelmann became determined to track down this man’s descendants to make a long-overdue apology, resulting in him reaching out to MyHeritage for help.

How MyHeritage Helped Thomas Edelmann Make Contact

In recent years, MyHeritage has played an important role in a series of genealogy breakthroughs. When a member of our support team was on the phone with Edelmann, Edelmann mentioned his search. Captivated, that sales member then relayed the story to our company’s research team. Upon hearing the story for themselves, our researchers became determined to help Edelmann on his search for the descendants of Benjamin Heidelberger.

Setting out to find any information about Heidelberger and his family, MyHeritage’s researchers were able to unearth two very important records: Heidelberger’s gravestone located in northern Israel, as well as Heidelberger’s naturalization record from British Mandatory Palestine. Using these records, our research team set out to do what they do best: build a family tree.

Gravestone image for Benjamin and his wife

After building Heidelberger’s family tree using the platform, our researchers were then able to locate his living descendants. This was no small task, as the MyHeritage research team only had the name “Benjamin Heidelberger” to work with.

Still, with 12.7 billion records available on MyHeritage, the team was hopeful. With a little hard work and ingenuity, they were able to discover that Heidelberger had a living granddaughter, a woman in her 80s named Hanna, who was living near Haifa, Northern Israel.

Reaching out to the descendant Hanna

After locating Hanna, MyHeritage reached out to her on Edelmann’s behalf. Initially suspicious, Hanna became excited when she was made aware of the reason she was being reached out to. As it turns out, Hanna had visited her grandfather’s original shop in Bad Mergentheim in the 1980s and even had a photo of herself standing outside.

anna outside the shop during a 1980s visit to Germany (Hanna center) (Hanna Ehrereich credit).

She also had a photograph of her grandfather’s shop framed on her wall to remind her, she said, of her family’s heritage on a daily basis. 

Benjamin and his wife, Emma

After speaking to the MyHeritage team, Hanna said she was aware that her grandfather, Benjamin Heidelberger, had been forced to sell the property by the Nazis and that the money he received from the sale had been used to purchase German exit visas for Benjamin, his wife Emma, and their son (Hanna’s father).

Edelmann was anxious to speak to Hanna and asked MyHeritage to facilitate a call. Before the call, Thomas wrote the following to Hanna:

“I believe that if my family supported the injustice your grandparents experienced, it is our duty to take this into account and take over responsibility at least in getting in touch with you to listen and learn.

 As I am part of the Edelmann family I want to take the first step and listen to you. I do understand that you might not see any benefit for yourself personally in talking to me. But with me understanding and being able to teach my children and possibly other family members about the impact of particular historical decisions, this might help them to make better decisions in their lives.

 Currently, the political climate in our country is poisoned. There is a new antisemitism upcoming. I want to make sure that at least my family will never again be responsible for injustice experienced by others, but stand up to take part for the weak”.

After receiving this letter from Edelmann, Hanna agreed to speak with him and, soon after, the pair talked for over 90 minutes. On this telephone call, they discussed their families’ stories in German. The conversation was moving, according to Hanna, who told MyHeritage, “He was very moved and said he was so happy to hear the story from my side he was almost crying.” Edelmann was able to make his own apology for the injustice that Hanna’s family faced in Nazi Germany, an apology that he felt he was responsible for making for so very long. This motivation to make this apology was what fueled his desire to use MyHeritage to track down Hanna and it is simultaneously what fueled our team to help in the search. Edelmann shares that he was deeply moved by the call and that the two continue to stay in touch he even plans to travel to Israel in the future.

Uncover Your Past With MyHeritage

This story is but one of many when it comes to our users using MyHeritage to uncover their past and form a greater appreciation for history’s events.  

We’re happy to have helped Edelmann make contact with someone he searched for so tirelessly, forming a friendship that they can remember forever. It is our honor to have played such a crucial role. 

We hope that you will be inspired to uncover your own family history, forming an appreciation of your ancestors and the hard times that they faced. What stories will you discover on MyHeritage? What doors will you open? We’re here to help you find out!




The post MyHeritage Helps Man Track Down a Family’s Descendant to Discuss the Past appeared first on MyHeritage Blog.

Introducing the MyHeritage Gift Membership

2020. november 16., hétfő 15:06:36

Just in time for the holidays, we’re happy to announce the launch of the new MyHeritage gift membership! You can now give someone special the MyHeritage Complete plan, our best plan for family history research. To celebrate the launch, gift memberships are now available with a 50% introductory discount.

With many people spending more time at home and looking for meaningful activities to enjoy, the MyHeritage gift membership makes the perfect holiday gift and is sure to delight a dear family member or close friend.

The gift membership is the Complete plan which provides access to all features and all 12.7 billion historical records on MyHeritage.

Order a gift membership in a few clicks, and your chosen recipient will receive an email explaining the super simple steps needed to redeem their gift.

Give a gift membership today

What’s included?

You can choose to give either a 1-year or 6-month gift membership. Gift memberships are one-time and do not renew.

The gift membership includes the following benefits of the Complete plan:

  •       Unlimited family tree size and unlimited photo storage 
  •       Access to MyHeritage’s 12.7 billion historical records
  •       Automatic Record Matches for the family tree 
  •       Automatic Smart Matches™ to millions of family trees
  •       Instant Discoveries™ consisting of Person Discoveries and Photo Discoveries
  •       Tree Consistency Checker that identifies mistakes and inconsistencies in the family tree
  •       Unlimited use of MyHeritage In Color™ and the MyHeritage Photo Enhancer

How to give a gift membership

To purchase a gift membership, visit

Giving a gift on

Select the duration of the gift either 6 months or 1 year, and click “Continue”.

You’ll be asked to log in to your MyHeritage account or sign up for free if you are not yet a MyHeritage user. An account is needed for the gift giver in order for MyHeritage to send notifications regarding the gift (e.g., to let them know that the gift was received and used), but that account doesn’t need to be a paid account. You’ll then be taken to the Order Page.

Order Page

Enter the recipient’s name and email, and add a personal greeting for the recipient if you wish.

We’ll soon add the option to select a delivery date within 6 months of the date of purchase, and if a delivery date isn’t selected, your gift will be sent on the date you purchase the gift membership. This is perfect for timing the delivery of the gift to someone’s birthday, for example.

Enter the billing information and complete your order. The gift will be charged once and will not auto-renew.

A confirmation email will be sent to your email.

You’ll also receive an email notification on the day that your gift is delivered.

Receiving a gift membership

The recipient of your gift will receive an email from MyHeritage notifying them of their gift with further instructions. Here’s how they redeem it:

The gift arrives! Recipient clicks “Get started” to proceed and “activate” the gift membership.
Activating a gift membership. Gift code is already pre-filled. The recipient only needs to click “Continue”.

A pop-up will appear to create a free MyHeritage account (for non MyHeritage users), or to log in to an existing account.

Once the membership is activated, the recipient clicks “Start your family tree” and that’s it!

If a gift membership is not activated within one week, a reminder email will be sent to the recipient.

If the recipient already has a family tree with another service, they can follow these instructions to upload it to MyHeritage as a GEDCOM file

Important details

At the end of the gift membership period, the recipient will retain access to their MyHeritage account and all family tree data and nothing will be deleted. If they wish to continue enjoying the full benefits of a membership, it will be up to them to extend their plan (or you can decide to be kind to them and give them another gift membership — it’s up to you).

If you gifted someone and they don’t want the gift, don’t worry! You can ask our customer support to transfer it to someone else. If you gifted someone and it turns out they already have a paid account on MyHeritage, you can also transfer it to someone else. Until a gift is activated by the recipient, the membership period doesn’t begin so no time is lost. The gift needs to be activated within 6 months of its delivery to the recipient, and then it will start.


A gift membership on MyHeritage makes a great holiday or birthday gift. It is the perfect way to introduce someone you care about to the enjoyable world of genealogy and help them discover their family history. Choose a 6-month or 1-year membership and enjoy a 50% discount off our regular prices.  If you are already a subscriber, you can share your passion for family history with someone else. If you know a relative or friend of yours who is using MyHeritage and enjoying it, surprise them with a gift membership and it will apply to their existing account on MyHeritage.


The post Introducing the MyHeritage Gift Membership appeared first on MyHeritage Blog.

MyHeritage Reunites Daughter with Father Who Didn’t Know She Exists

2020. november 12., csütörtök 14:18:43

When Seraine Danner was 7 years old, she learned something earth-shattering: she had a biological father and had no idea who he was. After almost 10 years of searching, a DNA match on MyHeritage finally led her to her birth father, and the two recently met for the first time.

Watch their emotional reunion below:

Seraine began actively searching for her father at age 15. “My mom gave me a few names that she thought could possibly be his, but she wasn’t sure,” says Seraine. “So I was trying to do all my research and everything, but it led nowhere, ‘cause how would I know?”


A few years ago, Seraine took a MyHeritage DNA test and got a match for a first cousin once removed. She decided not to pursue it because she was afraid they wouldn’t respond.

But then, not long ago, that person messaged her with a list of family names. “I tried to figure out how we’re related, but I was not familiar with any of these names,” says Seraine. It then occurred to her that maybe this match was from her lost father’s side. So she gave the cousin a list of names that her mother had given her that might have been her father’s. One of those names — Vincent Lipski — rang a strong bell. “She said that he was actually her cousin,” Seraine recalls. “I was like, ‘Oh my gosh — that means that’s my dad!’”

The cousin gave Seraine the names of her birth father’s siblings, and she reached out to one of them on Facebook. His sister managed to connect Seraine to Vincent. “He called me a few days later, and we’ve talked every day since.”

The news was a huge shock for Vincent. He had no idea that he’d fathered another. “Once he heard about me, it blew his mind,” says Seraine. “He took about a day and a half just to process it. He’d had no clue.”

“It’s definitely a process,” says Seraine, “but I’m super excited. My birth father, he’s just the sweetest person. And you know, I think taking the time to talk with him and get to know him, I literally couldn’t ask to find a better birth father. He’s just such a nice guy.”

Vincent as a child (left), and Seraine as a child (right)

“I was afraid that once I would find him, he’d be, like, a bad person or something,” admits Seraine. “But really he’s one of the sweetest people ever, and he’s been through a lot. He’s just so excited to get to know me and everything. He’s like, I actually have my own daughter now!”

The post MyHeritage Reunites Daughter with Father Who Didn’t Know She Exists appeared first on MyHeritage Blog.