I've been corresponding with reader Carol, who uses the www.AmericanAncestors.org databases a lot. She told me about wild card searches on the site. I don't recall using wild card searches before!
The Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) page is at http://www.americanancestors.org/faqs/ and the Wild Card Search section is at http://www.americanancestors.org/faqs/#8. It says:
"AmericanAncestors.org only requires one character before using a wildcard. The supported wildcards are:
"The keyword field and all other free text search boxes support the following wildcards:
- ? matches any single character
- * matches any number of characters
- + between two words will require both words to be present in the record
- – between two word will return results which contain the first word, but excludes the second word
- “ ” around a word or phrase will require the term in quotations to be present, exactly as typed
- ~ ~ between two years will search that year range, inclusive. Example, 1748~~1750 "