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Witches and Ireland and Bears, Oh My! -- Ancestry.com Celebrates 75th Anniversary of the Wizard of Oz by Revealing Family History Connections of the Films' Stars


August 15, 2014 - Provo, UT

PROVO, UT--(Marketwired - August 15, 2014) - To celebrate the 75th anniversary of the Hollywood premiere of The Wizard of Oz, Ancestry.com researchers have revealed a newly-discovered family history connection that links Margaret Hamilton, the legendary actress that brought the iconic "Wicked Witch of the West" to life on the big screen, to the Salem Witch Trials. Ancestry has also linked Emerald City creator L. Frank Baum and other actors from the cinematic classic to the Emerald Isle.

"We love the fun and unexpected things discovered on a daily basis on Ancestry.com. Finding the similarities between the Wizard of Oz cast and their iconic characters adds a touch of magical serendipity to the beloved classic," said Michelle Ercanbrack, a Family Historian for Ancestry.com. "It goes to show that whether your ancestors were from Kansas or Ireland, there's always something new to discover in your family history."

Actress Margaret Hamilton has a connection to the Salem Witch Trials, as does the book's author, L. Frank Baum. According to family history experts at Ancestry.com, Hamilton's 5th great grandparents found themselves living in colonial America near Salem, Massachusetts in the year of the famous Salem Witch Trials, after immigrating to the U.S. from Ireland. Research also revealed Baum had ancestors who lived near Salem during that same time period. With the Wicked Witch of the West playing a prominent role in Baum's story, the family history connection may have been the inspiration for the infamous character.

Maybe having "emerald" on the resume was also criteria for being cast in The Wizard of Oz. Hamilton and Baum are also joined by the film's top stars in having ancestral connections to another land of emerald green -- Ireland. Actors Judy Garland, Ray Bolger and Jack Haley who played "Dorothy," the "Scarecrow" and the "Tin Man" respectively, all have ancestors hailing from the Emerald Isle. Garland's roots go back to County Meath, while Bolger has family connections to County Limerick. Haley's ancestors left Ireland in the 1800s. 

Want to learn more about your own connection to the Emerald Isle or colonial era America? Visit Ancestry.com and search billions of historical records to discover your own family history.

About Ancestry.com
Ancestry.com is the world's largest online family history resource with approximately 2.7 million paying subscribers across all its websites. More than 14 billion records have been added to the Ancestry.com sites and users have created more than 60 million family trees containing more than 6 billion profiles. In addition to its flagship site www.ancestry.com, the company operates several global Ancestry international websites along with a suite of online family history brands, including Archives.com, Fold3.com, Newspapers.com, and offers the AncestryDNA service via its subsidiary, Ancestry.com DNA, LLC, all of which are designed to empower people to discover, preserve and share their family history.

Forward-Looking Statements
This press release contains forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements involve a number of risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those anticipated by these forward-looking statements. Such risks and uncertainties include a variety of factors, some of which are beyond the Company's control. In particular, such risks and uncertainties include the Company's ability to provide value to satisfy customer demand. Information concerning additional factors that could cause events or results to differ materially is contained under the caption "Risk Factors" in our Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the period ended June 30, 2014, which was filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on August 4, 2014, and in discussions in other of our Securities and Exchange Commission filings. These forward-looking statements should not be relied upon as representing our views as of any subsequent date and we assume no obligation to publicly update or revise these forward-looking statements.

Attachment Available: http://www.marketwire.com/library/MwGo/2014/8/15/11G020055/_quot_War_Nerves__quot__See__quot_The_Wizard_of_Oz-234960522479.pdf
Attachment Available: http://www.marketwire.com/library/MwGo/2014/8/15/11G020055/Wizard_of_Oz__quot_Unique_Idea_quot_-244277741465.pdf
Attachment Available: http://www.marketwire.com/library/MwGo/2014/8/15/11G020055/Wizard_of_Oz_opening_August_1939-126020164346.pdf

Media Contact:
John Paolo Canton
Sr. PR Manager
415-744-1795
jpcanton@ancestry.com

MarketWire

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