Fold3 is an online genealogy database with free and subscription resources. Records are searchable by war with dedicated pages specific to military events. Originally part of iArchives, Fold3 was purchased by Ancestry.com and has millions of documents, photos, and other genealogical resources.
Fold3’s records are focused on military databases, which makes it easy to search and locate information related to events, archives, and documents from the military. Compared to more general search resources like the National Archives or the U.S. Census, Fold3 makes a targeted search possible.
Fold3 provides access to historical documents and images otherwise unavailable to the public. The primary alternative would be to visit a physical location, unrealistic for most researchers.
Part of the family of brands connected to Ancestry.com, Fold3 receives significant credibility being associated with this larger company. Ancestry.com is one of the pioneer industry leaders with millions of records and a very large customer base, a sophisticated team of engineers, and full business funding. Compared to smaller databases or companies, Fold3 can draw on the resources of Ancestry.com without having to operate its own comparable infrastructure.
Customers have complained that they have not been able to cancel after beginning the free trial and were charged for a yearly membership. It seems that if you email or reach out on Facebook, the company will refund you quickly.
Some customers have not been able to find the military records they were looking for. This defeats the purpose of using a military-specific database and is a frustration for those searching for genealogy records using Fold3.
Although part of the Ancestry.com company, you can’t sign in using your username and password from Ancestry.com. This seems like an easy thing to fix, which indicates the software itself is not a high priority for Ancestry, which certainly would have the technical capabilities to make this type of sign-in integration.
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