Thursday 23 April 2020

Free access to MyHeritage's US Yearbook collection - now in colour

You'll remember that MyHeritage released its 'In Color' tool a couple of months ago....

It's proved very popular (10 million photos have been colorized by researchers so far) and it's easy to see why – just put a photo of one of your ancestors through the process and see a real person jump out of the old black and white image!

Well, MyHeritage has started applying their technology to its record collections in cases where black and white photos are abundant and colors could enhance the records. They focused their attention on their huge U.S. Yearbook collection on MyHeritage, which spans 290 million names in 36 million yearbook pages, covering the years 1890 until 1979.

Today, the ocmpany has announced that the entire collection has been colourized. To mark the occasion, and to give family historians a fun genealogical activity in this time of lockdown and isolation, the collection is now open with free access for an entire month (ending 23 May). You don't even have to sign up or register.

You can access the US Yearbooks collection here.

It holds 253,429 yearbooks and a student or faculty member may appear several times in any one of them. Part of the work conducted to produce this collection involved merging all occurrences of the same name in a yearbook into one record with references to the pages where the person is mentioned.

Records in this collection will list the person’s name, often their gender, school’s name and location, and likely residence based on the location of the school. Additional work was done to identify the grade of the students to be able to infer their age and an estimated year of birth for some of the records.