It began in 2003. In 2007 it won the Queen’s Award for Innovation. By mid-2010 it claimed to have over 650 million family history records. By 2017 it claimed over 2 billion.
Registration is free. It allows you to create or upload your own family tree then link found records to specific individuals on it.
You can log in with Facebook.
Mid-June 2010 offerEdit
"Our second World Cup Widows offer: when England play, you still don't pay*
- "Dear .....,
"With the next England match just around the corner, we’re warming up to provide further entertainment for any non-football fans in the form of our second World Cup widows offer:
"90 minutes free access to findmypast.co.uk, at a time of your choice, on the day that England play – when England play, you still don’t pay!
Later free weekends and occasional free weeksEdit
Every few months the company offers a free weekend, 48 or more hours of unlimited access to some of its resources. Searchers can open transcriptions and images and link them to individuals in their trees. When time's up, clicking on an image icon sends you to a subscription page, but there seems to be some leeway with transcriptions as long as you stay logged in and just edit your search (not clicking "New search").
Recent free weekends were in November 2014 and September 2015. The 2015 Rugby World Cup (won, for a record-breaking third time, by New Zealand) had not produced an additional offer like the 2010 soccer offer by the time England played its first pool match.
Next free weekend was at the end of January 2016, and there was a free (110 million) Irish records week in March. (Ancestry.com had only 55 million by then.)
At the end of May 2016 there was a totally free week. People were challenged to meet an ancestor they had never found before.
Free access to 65 million world military records and all UK and Irish census records, from 27 June to 4 July, to commemorate the centenary of the Battle of the Somme.
Overlapping that free 8-day period is another, celebrating the 4th of July "as part of a new campaign designed to help US family historians learn more about their family's path to red white and blue":
- "From June 29th until July 6th 2016, over 1 billion UK, US and Irish records will be completely free to search and explore on Findmypast
- "This includes all 118 million “Travel and Migration” records, 116 million US marriages, and all UK, Irish and US censuses
- "Over 7 million new US Naturalisation records and over 1.7 million US Passport Applications have also been released, marking the first phase of two brand new collections ideal for uncovering early immigrant ancestors "
2017 started with a totally free period from January 12-15.
- "From Thursday 27th April until 1st May 2017, over 1.9 billion birth marriage, death & and census records will be completely free to search and explore at Findmypast
- "This includes 595 million UK BMDs, the largest collection available online, over 80 million exclusive parish records you won’t find anywhere else, over 13 million Catholic Sacramental Registers covering England, Ireland, Scotland & the US, and over 168 million United States Marriages"
- "From 09:00 BST, 27th April until 23:00 BST, May 1st 2017, all record matches on Findmypast Family trees and the 1.9 billion records they cover will be completely free to view and explore."
Later: 'From 8th November until midnight, 12th November 2017, all 80 million records within Findmypast’s “Military, Armed Forces and Conflict” category will be completely free to search and explore, ...'
For a few days ending on 8 February 2018, all UK and Ireland censuses and civil BMD records were free at Findmypast.co.uk and Findmypast.ie.