Ancestry has updated their wildcard search.
Now you can put a wildcard first, such as *son or ?atthew.
Either the first or last character must be a non-wildcard character. For example, Han* and *son are okay, but not *anso*
Names must contain at least three non-wildcard characters. For example, Ha*n is okay, but not Ha*
These changes apply to both simple search and advanced search, and both old and new search.
via the Ancestry blog