News | May 14, 2024

Millions of Historical Records Held by the National Archives to be Digitized and Made Accessible

National Archives/John Valceanu

Howard Hochhauser, Chief Financial Officer and Chief Operating Officer at Ancestry, signs an official agreement with Dr. Colleen Shogan, Archivist of the United States, at a signing event at the National Archives Building

The National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) has announced a new multiyear agreement with Ancestry to digitize, index, and publish tens of millions of historical United States records, previously unavailable online. 

“The National Archives is the nation’s record keeper, and we hold billions of stories in our collection. Our mission is to preserve, protect, and share those stories with all Americans,” said Dr. Colleen Shogan, Archivist of the United States. “Our collaboration with Ancestry is a great example of a public-private partnership. By working together, we will digitize millions of records from our holdings and make them available to the public.” 

  • The records to be digitized include:
  • U.S. military morning reports from World War II
  • Selective Service draft cards covering the post–World War II draft registration between 1948 and 1959
  • naturalization and immigration records held at the National Archives at San Francisco, CA
  • records held in San Francisco, CA, related to Asian Americans
  • records held at the National Archives at Denver, CO, relating to Native Americans

Since 2008, the National Archives and Ancestry have collaborated to make important historical records more available to the public. The digitization of these records since the beginning of this collaboration and their availability through both the National Archives Catalog and the Ancestry platform help the public more easily find and access pieces of the nation’s, and their families’, history.