Thursday Tidbit – Pasquale’s Estate

Pasquale Giorgio’s name was sometimes spelled Georgia and sometimes Georgio. He worked for the B&O railroad in New Castle, had two wives, 12 children (5 who died as infants or children) and a lot of heartache in his life.

Today’s tidbit is the screen shot from my search for “Pasquale Georgia” in the New Castle News. After his death in 1960, it looks like his son Victor was the administrator of his estate. Pasquale Georgia.estatematters.1960 What doesn’t show up in this screen shot is a quiet title action that Victor George filed as the Administrator of his father’s estate. Beginning in the 1920 census, Pasquale was listed as owning his home at 109 Home Street. The house was the site of many parties and gatherings as indicated by various newspaper articles in the NCN. Apparently, by the time 1960 came around, someone other than Pasquale’s family, was claiming ownership of the home – or may have had a claim of ownership. This can occur for many different reasons, sometimes because of a technical error in how the deed was recorded or a neighbor’s fence or driveway that is too far over the property line, but in order for the estate to have clear title to sell the property, title issues had to be cleared up. From that article I learned that Pasquale’s deed to the property was dated 1919.

Now I have something new to investigate when we visit New Castle, PA this summer. I remember the people in the clerk’s office being very friendly and helpful and our time there on our last visit much too short. I’m looking forward to a return trip to where our Giorgio journey began.

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Victor Americus George – Where’d He Go Wednesday?

VictorAGeorge.obit.1960.NCNIn genealogy you learn to research people by learning about their “FANs” which stands for friends, associates and neighbors. You also learn to search for details about a particular person’s life by the things you find in his obituary.

It also turns out that newspaper articles are a big boost to learning about your ancestors and the digitized version of the New Castle News is one of the best sources for information about the Giorgio boys who lived in New Castle and their descendants.

When Adriano left Dunbar in 1912, he may have spent some time in New Castle with his brothers before leaving the country for good. We know that his oldest son Nick George was living in New Castle by 1915 and probably sooner, because that was the year he married Mary Giampaolo.

This article is from the New Castle News – July 11, 1960 and even though I found it while searching “Nick George” it offers a lot of detail about his younger brother Victor. Victor died at the early age of 49 – another victim of the heart conditions that plagued so many of the men in the George family.

This article provides a wonderful summary of Victor’s many accomplishments. Another example of one of the George boys leading a very civic minded life. How sad that he died on the night he would have been installed as President of the Midland Rotary club.

It’s also interesting that he graduated from Midland High School. I do remember that in the 1930 census, Victor was living in Midland with his brother’s Fred and Joseph. He must have been helping in George’s Pharmacy before he had even finished high school – a pattern that Frank, the youngest son, also followed.

Of the original Giorgio boys who came from Italy: Ciro, Adriano, Pasquale and Romualdo, all of them, except for Ciro, had a son named Nick. Other popular names for their sons were Pasquale or Pat, Louis and Victor. Filomena – or the Americanized version – Phyllis, Josephine and Mary seemed to be the most popular girls’ names.

Another Cousin Found !

Jamie George from California has found the Giorgio family blog. His grandfather Victor, was the first son born to Pasquale Giorgio and his second wife, Filomena Ranieri. Jamie’s father was named Pasquale but went by Pat. When we first met Terry Colaluca, I remember her saying that 2011 was a bad year for her, because she was very close to her uncle Pat and he died just four months after her father died.

Most of the pictures and posts have been about the direct descendants of Adriano and Custode Iacobucci. My husband Rick is the grandson of their first son – Frederick William George who was born in Pennsylvania in 1899. I am so thankful for meeting so many of you and for you sharing the pictures you have of our family.

I would love to find someone who has pictures of Pasquale Giorgio, with either of his wives and their children. I’ll be spending a week in Pittsburgh this summer and I’ll have my portable scanner with me so if you’ve got any photos you are willing to share – please let me know.

You can read more about Pasquale in this post from last summer.

Friday Foto Feature

I made it through my first week back at work after a week off. Here are a few of the pictures I scanned on my visit with Dominic Renzi.

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Nick Renzi with a well dressed visitor from Brownsville at the farm

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Dominic’s Giordano grandparents on 12th Street in Connellsville, PA

Tuesday Tidbit

It’s hard to believe that a week ago Rick and I were at breakfast with Dominic Renzi and his friend Diana. After breakfast we went back to his apartment and he shared enough stories to inspire Tuesday and Thursday tidbits for a long, long time.

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Grandmother Renzi in front of the farmhouse on Limestone Hill

As a “self-taught” genealogist, one thing I’ve read over and over, is that you should  start with your oldest living relative and get his or her stories before it’s too late. Yes Dominic, by my calculation, you are the oldest living relative but thankfully I don’t think you’re going anywhere too soon. I hope that I will have half the energy (physical and mental) that you do when I’m your age.

Just to update anyone who isn’t familiar with the family tree, Dominic is part of the George family because Lena George was his step-mother. His mother Julia Giordano  died in May 1939 after what should have been a simple operation to remove a goiter. Apparently the surgeon did not properly suture the incision and she bled to death the night before she was supposed to come home. According to Dominic, the doctor responsible was never seen again, perhaps hurrying out of town because of the reputation of the Giordano brothers who were none too happy with the tragic death of their sister.

The Renzi family lived on a farm on Limestone Hill but Nick Renzi had a full time job on the railroad. Although his sisters took care of the boys immediately after Julia died, Nick needed a wife to be with the boys since he was often gone for days at a time. Dominic remembers that his father visited a few other ladies before he chose Lena as his wife. Although he didn’t come right out and say it,  I think one of the earlier candidates would have been Dominic’s choice (he even remembered her name!) Thankfully for us, we get the benefit of Dominic’s memory because, for whatever reason, his father chose Lena.

Carole Ann has mentioned the story of Dominic and his younger brother Gene sitting in the parlor while his father and Custode negotiated the terms of Nick’s marriage to Lena – in Italian. When the negotiations were over, Nick and the boys left and on the way home, he told them, “I think you just met your new mother.” This was only three months after Julia died.

A few things stand out from what Dominic told me about his father’s marriage to Lena. First of all, Lena did not participate in the negotiations. She was in the room but never said a word. She sat in silence and never expressed any affection or warmth when Nick and the boys left.

Secondly, even though Lena was an accomplished pianist, Custode refused to let her take the piano to the farm. Apparently this was out of spite because from what Dominic remembers, Custode did not play the piano, she just didn’t want Lena to have it. In her view, such a refined item had no place in a farm house.

Finally, and perhaps most shocking of all, (although at this point, nothing I hear about Custode surprises me) Custode insisted that  Nick and Lena take her grandson, Harold Galand on their honeymoon. Harold was 12 (just two years older than Dominic) when he got to visit Canada and the New York World’s Fair.  A great opportunity for Harold, but what a damper on any chance for romance between Lena and Nick.

Even though Lena was not a good mother to Dominic and Eugene, the combination of her brother Gene and Aunt Rosie made up for it. According to Dominic, Lena was mean to Aunt Rosie and often made her cry but Rosie did her best to shield the boys from Lena’s fury. Many times during our visit last week, Dominic shared a story of Uncle Gene’s kindness and generosity. Uncle Gene loved the farm and would often stop by to visit Aunt Rosie and to soak in the fresh smell of newly plowed earth. On leaving he would always admonish his sister to be good to the boys.

Nick Renzi died in 1949, ten years after he married Lena. Although he left the farm to Lena and the two boys in equal shares, Lena refused to leave and also refused to let the boys live there (not that they wanted to.) Eventually, Gene arranged for the boys to “buy out” Lena. He got Lena a job at the hospital in Connellsville and convinced her to move to an apartment there.

Dominic lived on the farm and was making repairs to the house which had fallen into disrepair while Lena lived there. On one visit when Gene saw that Dominic had converted the back seat of his car to carry loads of materials needed for the repairs, he commented that Dominic needed a pick-up truck.  A few days later, Gene called and asked Dominic to meet him in town.  When he got there Gene was parked near a truck and as the two men talked, Gene asked what Dominic thought about the truck. Dominic thought it was nice and Gene said – “Good – because it is yours.”When he asked what he owed him, Gene said nothing – it was a gift. Dominic needed a truck and Gene got it for him.

Just one example of Uncle Gene’s many acts of kindness, which are perhaps a big part of  why Dominic is not unhappy about his father’s choice of his replacement mother.

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Nick Renzi on a visit to Canada (probably before his honeymoon)