Farindola~~June 17, 1888. On this day in 1888 my great great grandparents Biagio Di Francesco and Marianna Di Pendima were married in Farindola, Pescara. They were both contadini and the parents of my great grandfather Paolo Di Francesco.
Biagio was born on January 15, 1866 in Trosciano, Farindola to Luigi Di Francesco and Anna Emidia Lucerini. His birth record starts at the bottom of this page. Both of his parents were born in Farindola. Marianna was born on March 17, 1868 in Cupoli, Farindola to Carlo Di Pentima from Via Piana, Pianella and Nicola Antonia (di) Giansante from Rione del San Giovanni, Penne. Marianna’s birth.
The witnesses to their marriage were Clemente de Bernardinis, 43, Secretary (Municipal), and Domenico Ammazalorzco, 48, Country Guard (Municipal).
Biagio and Marianna welcomed their first child, Filomena, a little less than 9 months later. She died in infancy. Using other Farindola records on Antenati, I found that they went on to have at least 5 more children, and a stillborn. One son, named Zopito, emigrated to Canada. A daughter named Vincenza was born in 1890 and died in Farindola in 1954.
A son named Alfonso was born in 1892 and was a soldier in the 156 Regiment during World War 1 and died on August 12, 1915 from wounds received at Monte Cappuccio at the Second Battle of the Isonzo. His death record was on Antenati here because his parents requested information on their son from the Italian Army. In 1917, his military death record was sent from Rome to his parents and filed in the town records which I was able to access on Antenati.
My great grandfather Paolo Di Francesco was born in 1897. On July 15, 1915, he was called to military service in World War I and served in the 30th Artillery Regiment of the Infrantry. He was released from service in 1919. He and his future wife Luigia Maria Massei named a son Alfonso.
Biagio and Marianna had a son named Luigi who was born in 1899. He died in 1923 shortly after marrying Maria Vinci. Biagio died in 1923 as well at 29 Via Rossetti, Farindola. His death record is here. Marianna Di Pendima lived at least until 1928 because I have not located her death record in Farindola.
A Bit About the Parents of Marianna Di Pendima
Marianna’s mother Nicola Antonia (di) Giansante’s grandparents were Saverio Di Giansante and Domenica Andreoli. Saverio could write, and I have his signature from his son’s wedding record in Penne. They were contadini as well.
Saverio died in Penne but was born in Carpineto della Nora, Pescara, which is a few miles south of Farindola. Saverio’s death. Saverio and Domenica have a lot of descendants researching them and I run into more and more people wondering if that is why our DNA matches, etc. They are only in my tree once but in my Canadian cousins’ tree twice! As I am typing this I am asking myself why I have not yet researched Carpineto della Nora on Antenati!
Marianna’s father Carlo Di Pentima was born in Pianella and was a contadino. Carlo’s birth is on the left. Pianella is a few miles southeast of Farindola. In Pianella, the surname is spelled with a ‘t’ and not the ‘d’ they gave it in Farindola. I had to keep that in mind when I was looking at indexes. I have been researching Pianella the past week and the town seems larger than Farindola. In the late 1700s Pianella had a colony of Albanians according to the Farindola history I found on this Farindolesi’s website. I love that website.
The research continues…Wouldn’t it be something if I found an Albanian surname in my tree?
Sources: Antenati, Cadutigrandeguerra.it, Archivio di Stato di Teramo, Zia C.
Today’s birthday is Angela Maria di Massimo, born in 1871 at 10 a.m. in Macchie, Farindola, Pescara. She was the mother of my great grandmother Maria Luigia Massei.
-Angela Maria di Massimo-
The year 1871, day 7 of the month of June at hour 12, at the town hall, announced to me Massimo Ferri, Secretary of this Comune di Farindola, Penne Circuit, Province of Teramo, delegated, the Civil State Official, with the act of the Mayor dated the 20th of July last year, from the Procuratore of the King, appeared Donato di Massimo, of the living Serafino and the deceased Angela Maria Colangeli (Angela Maria Cecilia Colangeli), of 26 years, occupation contadino, living as a resident in Farindola, who presents a baby of the feminine gender, that he says was born on the 7th of the current month at the 10th hour to his wife Anna Domenica Cacciatore, daughter of the living Sabatino and the deceased Antonia Uriani (Oriani/Auriano), of 25 years, with whom he resides in their house in this Comune di Farindola at contrada Macchie, to this daughter he says he has given the name Angela Maria.
The above was declared and was also presented to me by Vincenzo Colangeli of the living Mattia of 37 years of the profession contadino and living as a resident in Farindola and of Costantino Massei (my third great grandfather and future father-in-law of Angela Maria di Massimo), of the living Sabatino of 39 years of the profession of contadino also living as a resident in Farindola.
The rest of the document says something to the effect of “the above act is presented and read to all of those present because they are illiterate.”
Signed: Civil State Officer Delegate
Source: Antenati/Archivio di Stato di Pescara: Stato Civile Italiano, Farindola, Nati 1871 Numero 58
We know from other documents retrievable at Antenati that Angela Maria’s mother Anna Domenica Cacciatore was born in Penne. Her father Donato di Massimo was born at a place in Farindola area called the Colle della Castagna. I would love to figure out where that spot is on a map of Farindola. Donato’s mother Angela Maria Cecilia Colangeli, for whom my second great grandmother was named, was born in Montebello di Bertona, a neighboring village.
My great grandparents Cesidio Marcella and Serafina Merlenghi were married in Farindola. Their marriage was recorded at 3:40 in the afternoon at the Farindola town hall.
Because Cesidio’s father Filippo was deceased, his mother Elisabetta Rossi gave consent to the marriage. Serafina’s parents Cesidio Merlenghi and Maria Michela Cirone were both still living. Witnesses to the marriage were Antonio Carusi and Cesidio Colella. You can see down at the very bottom that my great grandfather signed his name.
And the paragraph I mentioned in yesterday’s post referencing Maria is enlarged below:
My translation is “the parents present with testimony also declare that from their natural union a daughter was born to unknown parents, …….the Uffizio de Stato Civile, the day 29 October 1916 with the name Maria and the surname of Battistisimi, presently recognize the same as a daughter effected to legitimacy. Please step in here native Italian speakers…
So now I ask again, how did my great grandmother get pregnant if my great grandfather was at war? He was on leave.
Immigrant Cesidio Marcella, my great grandfather, was born in 1895 in Case Bruciate, Farindola, Pescara, Italy. He came through Ellis Island in 1923 when he was 28 to earn money to send home to his family.
He was 1 of 15 children. His aunt, Maria Marcella, was the midwife that was present at his birth. He was the oldest child of his mother, Elisabetta Rossi. She was the second wife of his father, Filippo. Filippo had 9 children with his first wife, Maria Antonia Lacchetta, of which, the following, that I know of, survived to adulthood: Raffaele (father of Gabriele Marcella), Pasqua, Filomena, and Serafina. All of Filippo’s children to Elisabetta survived to adulthood. In order of birth, they were: Cesidio, Maria Domenica, Antonia Vincenza, and Andrea Antonio. Andrea greatly resembled his brother Cesidio.
At age 20, my great grandfather was made to perform military service during World War I in the 3rd Regiment Artillery.
The above photo is the physical description written down by the commander when he reported for his mandatory military service. His hair was straight and chestnut colored, his eyes were chestnut (we knew them as hazel) and his nose is described as greco for Greek. His hair would redden in the sun. At leggere/scrivere it says “si”, so he knew how to read and write. His profession is contadino.
I would like someone again to tell me the name of the place in the North of Italy where he had boot camp. After having served on the front line in the trenches in Austria, he was admitted to the military hospital in June 1916. In October 1916, he was released to go home on permanent leave. While he was away in the Army, his father had passed away in April of 1916.. I have the rest of his military record but some of the dates are so light I can’t make other things out. Is anyone willing to try?
A few weeks ago, I found the marriage record of my great grandparents at the LDS. Because of Italian privacy and contractual laws, this record is not available online for all to view, because it happened in 1919. At that time, my great grandfather was still a farmer. I will explore their marriage record later, on their anniversary. But for the purposes of this post, a written paragraph at the bottom stated the marriage legitimized the birth of a child born to a natural union, she was named Maria Battistisimi, and was born in 1916. Yes, it said 1916. Maria, according to the marriage record, was born October 29, 1916. When I first saw her birth date on my great grandfather’s petition for naturalization in the United States, I thought he misremembered the actual date. I will post the paragraph later and you can decide if I did indeed read her birthdate correctly. So how could she have been conceived while my great grandfather was in the trenches in Austria? He must’ve been on leave, right???? I COULD EASILY get her birth record from Farindola…you tell me what you think after you read about the marriage on their anniversary.
My great grandparents had four children: Zia Maria, Zia L. (who is still alive), my grandfather Biagio Filippo (who perished in World War II in the Alpini), and Zio Alberino (who died in the United States). Zia Maria married Iezzi. Zia L. married Fiore Generosi, son of Giuseppe Generosi (a foundling from Teramo) and Maria Di Gregorio. Alberino married another Farindolese who he brought to America, Gabriella Perilli, daughter of Angelo Perilli and Regina Colangelo.
After the birth of my grandfather, my great grandfather came to America. The previous post about his travel to America, Naturalization and time here can be found at this previous post: On this day in 1923….
I believe my great grandfather looked like this when he became a citizen of the United States:
I don’t care what anybody says but when I do a quick double-take, my brother resembles this photo, sans mustache. When his passport from 1929 becomes public record in a few years, we should have another young photo of him.
When I started genealogy, someone in my family said to me, “The Marcellas have been in Farindola for centuries.” It is simply true. I have traced back directly to Donato Marcella (my 6th great grandfather), born around 1700 in my paternal line who was likely born in Farindola because I still have not found Marcellas born in any neighboring Pescara towns.
Donato may be the son of Domenico based on the number of Domenico Marcellas that were alive at the same time as my 5th great grandfather Domenico. I think the wife of Donato Marcella may have been Domenica Cervo. Unfortunately, I have only found one record that says the mother of Donato Marcella’s daughter was named Domenica Cervo, and that is on the death record of one Giustina Marcella, #110 Morti 1816, the widow of Mattia Macrini. This is the link to her death at Antenati.
Through what is available on Antenati in Pescara, the earliest baptismal record I could find of any related Marcella in our tree was from Anna Saveria Marcella, sister of my 4th great grandfather Giuseppe Antonio Marcella, and is from her 1818 marriage to Vito Antonio Di Vico. Her baptismal extract is from 1773 and can be viewed at this link on Antenati. You can see her grandparents are listed as Donato (Marcella) and Giacinto (Ferri).
The earliest record I could find of a Marcella being born in frazione Case Bruciate was the brother of my 3rd great grandfather, Massimo Nicola Marcella, named Vincenzo, who was born there on April 2, 1812. Vincenzo’s birth record can be viewed here from Antenati on the right and continues to the next page. Massimo Nicola married Maria Carolina Colangeli and they moved to frazione Trosciano and then back to frazione Case Bruciate. It surprised me they lived in Trosciano, so perhaps any Marcellas there are relations of the Marcellas in Case Bruciate.
The Marcellas were farmers while their wives were filatrici (spinners) and levatrici (midwives). There was a branch of Marcellas in Farindola in the late 1700s and first half of the 1800s that were falegnami (carpenters). I have not been able to establish a connection between the contadini (farmers) and falegnami, even though they appeared in the same civil records as witnesses to each other’s life events.
Cesidio’s mother’s ancestry
While Elisabetta Rossi was born in Baccuco (Arsita, Teramo), her father Giuseppe Antonio Rossi was born in Penne, and her mother, Anna Antonia Ricci, was born in Castiglione Messer Raimondo, Teramo. However, all of Elisabetta Rossi’s grandparents were born in Penne and as you can see in Cesidio’s pedigree chart posted above, the tree is filled out to at least 6th great grandparents in most lines, and goes back further than can be pictured in one little snipping tool insert. Elisabetta also descended from filatrici from Penne and most of the males I found in her lines were literate. Penne, if I may compliment them, kept impeccable records and I am glad all of these records are available on Antenati.
A note about the Sciarras
Can you see Baldassare Sciarra in the pedigree posted above? He is the 2nd great grandfather of Cesidio, He was born in Fara San Martino, Chieti. He was a lanaro, which meant he worked with wool, and/or was a merchant of wool. Because Baldassare brought the surname Sciarra to Farindola, I am almost positive all of the Sciarra from Farindola today descend from him. He married a Farindolese, Angela Gabriele Dell’Orso. She was the daughter of Cinziarosa.
United States Naturalizations
United States Social Security Deaths
Arhives of Teramo (for military documents)
Archives of Pescara (Antenati.San.Beneculturali.com)
Comune di Farindola Anagrafe (our Colangeli cousin)
Zia C. in Canada
P. D’Angelo in Penne that assists with the Penne ancestry
Coming: The anniversary of the marriage of Cesidio Marcell and Serafina Merlenghi
Send me a message if you need an invitation to the tree on Ancestry.
Farindola, Pescara ~ Today is the 126th anniversary of the marriage of Angela Maria Di Massimo and Antonio Massei. Who are they? They are the parents of Maria Luigia Massei, my great grandmother.
Angela Maria Di Massimo was born in 1871 in Macchie, Farindola and was the daughter of Donato Di Massimo and Anna Maria Domenica Cacciatore. Antonio Massei was born in 1864 in Farindola and was the twin of Nicola Massei. He and his twin were both born in the 23rd hour of February 18, 1864 to Costantino Massei and Rosa Antonia Pompili. There is no mention on their birth records who was born first, but Nicola’s birth was placed before Antonio’s in the birth register in Farindola.
Everyone on the marriage document, except Anna Domenica Cacciatore, was born in Farindola. She was born in Penne. Antonio Massei signed his name at the bottom of the marriage document. Because the transfer above is kind of on the weak-side, you can view their marriage online here at Antenati. You can view the rest of their marriage documents here on Antenati.
My great grandmother’s parents had at least 5 children. Their oldest, Francesca, married Raffaele Cirone and died in Farindola in 1977. Their oldest son Gennaro died in Penne in 1975. We already know Luigia Maria married Paolo Di Francesco. Another son was named Plinio.
Finally, one of their sons was named Paolo and he married Maria Nicoletta Iezzi, also from Farindola. Paolo came to the United States in 1920, first coming to Pennsylvania, and then making his permanent residence in New Jersey where some of Paolo’s and Maria Nicoletta Iezzi’s descendants live today.
Angela Maria Di Massimo died in 1927 in Farindola at age 55, while Antonio Massei lived until at least 1928 where the online records stop.
I would love to hear from other Massei descendants in America even if they descend from Clemente Massei and are living in New Jersey!
Happy New Year! Feliz Anno Nuovo! Frohes Neues Jahr!
Will it be this year? Will the USCIS fulfill my request for Angelo’s Board of Special Inquiry hearing file in 2017? Will it happen this year?
It is the start of a new year and time to make our firm oaths of intent to better ourselves in the coming year. So I ate the lentils to ensure wealth this year. In the genealogy world that means I resolve to spend less money on genealogical research. I resolve spend more time sorting and organizing records (yeah right!), maybe have the cash to join a genealogy society or two, including one that concentrates on Italian-American research, and going forward this year in my family history research I prudently resolve to do the following:
In my Swiss German line ~ ~
Finish reading the books I already have on Bernese Anabaptists from Masthof Press before I try to get my hands on more. Gerichtsshoffe Balthasar Rubli’s parents were banished from the Emmenthal Valley in Canton Bern by the Swiss government sometime between 1675 and 1689. They left with no possessions and walked for two weeks with the clothes on their backs with hundreds of other refugees towards the promise of religious freedom in the German Palatinate where they raised Balthasar, my 6th great grandfather. He left the Anabaptist faith and married into a Catholic family.
The story of the persecution of the Rubeli or Rubli appear in these two books:
The Rubeli are also in the Palatinate Mennonite Census of the late 1600s and early 1700s. My ultimate goal is to find the first Swiss Anabaptist in this line.
In my German lines ~~
For Johann Schuttler, my first American ancestor, I am proud he made wagons for the Union Army. I resolve to never again ask a descendant of his son if they took an Ancestry DNA test, knowing Johann’s second wife, and the son’s mother, was 7 months pregnant when Johann married her, and knowing they had to swear out an affidavit to have him buried in the Schuttler cemetery plot when he died. Now I know why I never heard from that researcher again! I just wish I could find the names of Johann’s parents and will not pay a researcher in Germany to do that.
If possible this year, I resolve to fill out more family in the line of the Schultheiss (Mayor) Johann Valentin Helfrich. He was my 8th great grandfather. His family appears in their own section in this free history book downloadable from the town of Leimen:
Valentin’s ancestors appear in another German language publication called Die Helfriche im Grafensteiner Amt that a distant cousin was nice enough to email to me in spurts because neither his nor my email could support it in all in one email. Valentin descends from a German Junker. That is a minor nobleman – something like a squire. Junker Helfrich was born around 1430 and is my 15th great grandfather. The book says he was from Leinengen, Germany. I offered to translate some of the book for my distant cousin. I don’t know what I was thinking. It takes me at least two hours to translate one page and there are about 75 pages in the book!
In another German line I resolve to begin research on Marie Louise Koppel, my 3rd great grandmother, mother of the Fritz Eckebrecht from Thuringen. I would like to work on her ancestry, not the Eckebrechts which dear cousin Frank already researched. She owned a mill according to Frank.
She is the woman seated in the center in this photo:
In my French lines ~ ~
There is a 9th great grandfather of mine named Gall Budel. He was a miller with a first name I have never encountered before. There is an odd rumor floating around the French-speaking internet that he was also Maire or Mayor of Haspelschiedt, Moselle, France. I cannot confirm that and resolve to research that.
In my Italian lines ~ ~
I resolve to request the pension record of Angelo Ferraro and to figure out a way to push for Francesco Antonio Ferraro’s military record for his service in the Bourbon Army.
I resolve to continue to search for descendants of Angelo and Filomena in America while waiting for Caserta and Napoli records to go on Antenati.
I resolve to continue to add more ancestors in my Farindolesi and Pennesi tree because it is so simple to do with the records Antenati has online for Pescara.
Speaking of the Farindolesi tree, because my combined trees approach 3000 individuals, and I don’t believe it has been done before with the any of these Italian lines, I resolve to work towards preparing at least one of my trees put into the next new thing in genealogy sites on the world wide web, my own database. I think it will make researching easier for those that ask me which Antonio Cirone in my tree is theirs because I have at least 5 Antonio Cirone in my tree. I have used these databases when I work on trees for my relatives, but, none of my ancestors are in one of those.
Finally, when I get the genealogy attention deficit disorder problem I usually get every two weeks or so, while working on any resolutions above, I resolve to finish my cousin’s tree and finish the other tree of a relative who descends from the Soderini of Florence are the subject of this book that I was able to find used for a cheap price:
Yes, his ancestors were right there with the Medici. Happy ancestor hunting!
St. Catharines, Ontario – A few months ago my cousin shared some photos with me of my great grandparents Paolo Di Francesco and Luigia Maria Massei. The photos are from Italy. I may have met my great grandmother Luigia, although I do not remember her. Her husband pictured, Paolo Di Francesco, died before I was born.
He was known for his looks. There are definitely some family resemblances today. Great grandfather Paolo served in the Italian Army after the first World War. His older brother Alfonso, also in the military, died at the Second Battle of the Isonzo in 1915.
My great grandparents were farmers. Paolo died in Penne, Pescara in 1974. Luigia died in the north of Italy where she had been living with my grandmother. She has been pictured before.
FARINDOLA, PESCARA – Last Brick Wall Wednesday I mentioned the pedigree wall faced with the “padre incerto” child Anna Paola Lucerini in the Merlenghi line. This time it is a different sort of wall with Anna Paola’s grandfather Romoaldo Lucerini. When he died in 1809, his profession was listed as artista (artist). His son Nicola was also an artista.
What was he an artist of?
The Merlenghis seem to have a few people in their ancestry that worked with their hands. There were several builders and a carpenter. Now Romoaldo, the artista.
So again I ask….what was he an artist of? How can I research his profession? Did he paint? Was he a sculptor? Wood carver? What do you think his artistic talent was? This is a frustrating wall!
ELLIS ISLAND – On this day in 1923, my Great Grandfather Cesidio Marcella arrived at Ellis Island. It was his first trip to America. He made the passage on the ship “Giulio Cesare” which left Naples on September 8. He stated that he was a laborer, that he was able to write, that his wife Serafina was in Farindola, Italy, and that he was going to meet relatives in Marcus Hook, Pennsylvania. Grandpop was going to stay with his Serafina’s brother Vincenzo Merlenghi to earn money to send to his family.
A couple of years later he moved to the largely Italian-American community of Ozone Park, Queens County, NY and worked in construction in New York City. It was with his blood and sweat, and that of thousands of other immigrants working for menial wages, the beautiful skyscrapers of New York City were built. Sometimes he would skimp eating his meals to be able to send more money home to Italy.
It was advantageous that he first came to America in 1923. The next year the Immigrant Act of 1924 was passed and it limited the number of Italians allowed into the country. Grandpop became a citizen in 1929 and returned home an American citizen for the Christmas season like many other Italians. The following spring he returned to Pennsylvania to again live with the Merlenghis and to send money home to his family working in construction. He eventually started his own plaster business.