The Blogosphere is a Wonderful World!

It probably comes as no surprise to anyone reading this – that I am completely obsessed with learning anything that will help me with genealogy research and internet search techniques. One of the reasons I started this blog was in hopes of finding new Giorgio relatives who might happen upon it and get in touch with me. That has happened – but not as much as I’d like. The other reason, of course, is to share what I learn with the other Giorgio descendants.

Of course, I am a neophyte when it comes to blogging but I usually take a WordPress class every month or so and they are so informative and FREE! The primary message in all of the classes, and perhaps, the primary reason they offer these classes – is that you must build your community of fellow bloggers. You read their blogs, they read your blogs, maybe if you like what you read you “follow” them and if they like what you write, they follow you and so on. Before long your “following” grows and the advantage is that your blog starts to reach more people.

That all takes a sizable time commitment (which means time away from genealogy research and cleaning house – tsk)  but I’ve tried to get better about doing that. Today – that effort has paid off immeasurably as one of my fellow Blogging 201 classmates sent me a message about finding Concetta GIorgio’s death certificate after he read my post yesterday.

Yes - Concetta died from complications related to childbirth!

Yes – Concetta died from complications related to childbirth!

I’ve got so much more to say and my lunch hour is so very short. I’ve seen a lot of spellings for Giorgio but never – G-i-o-s-g-i-o.  It makes sense because the indexers of records are transcribing script and it is certainly true that a hastily written “r” in cursive can look like an “s” – but I’d never thought about searching for Giosgio in the death certificates, or anywhere else for that matter. Who knows what else I might find with this new information! Thank you axehandles!

I surmised yesterday that Concetta’s death – almost 9 months to the day from the death of her still born child on April 13, 1913 – was unlikely to be related to childbirth since I assumed it would have taken awhile for her to get pregnant again. Guess I was wrong. This leads me to another observation none too kind toward Uncle Pasquale – “My god man – have you no mercy!” Your wife Concetta has already lost two children, is taking care of three others under the age of 7, has a stillborn child on April 13, 1913 and one day shy of nine months later, pregnant again, not only loses the child but also her life. Give it a rest Uncle P! (I might have to rethink my choice of you being the relative I’d most like to meet after Custode!)

I realize I’m viewing history with the eyes of a woman who grew up with all the benefits of birth control and women’s rights – so it’s not really fair to judge their behavior – but the frequency with which both of Pasquale’s wives became pregnant (and who, might I ask, is the common denominator in both cases?) leaves me astounded and somewhat perplexed.

Last child born (dead) to Pasquale and Concetta.

Last child born (dead) to Pasquale and Concetta.

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Pasquale Giorgio – The Family Headcount Continues

Pasquale Giorgio was born in San Vito Chietino, Italy on May 20, 1877. He died on November 17, 1958 in Wayne County, PA at the Farview State Hospital where he spent the last 21 years, 8 months and 11 days of his life.  Perhaps more than any of his brothers’,  Pasquale’s story illustrates the difficulties and heartaches that were part of the immigrant experience. Continue reading

Quick Test

It seems my post last night appeared on FB as posted by me (Kalen Kingsbury) instead of Trovando Famiglia. The whole point of creating this page was to post as “Trovando” so I’m making a quick post to see what went wrong.

Favorite Mountain Spot

Happy Monday! Looking forward to our long weekend in the mountains beginning on Thursday.

Adriano Giorgio – The Giorgio family head count continues!

Adriano Giorgio was my husband’s great grandfather. He was born in San Vieto Chietino, Italy on December 27, 1871. Of the four Giorgio brothers who immigrated to Pennsylvania in the late 1800s, he is the only one who did not stay in America. He left Pennsylvania in 1912, returned to Italy and married his third wife there in 1913.

But let’s start at the beginning.

Adriano married Marianna Frattura of Castel di Sangro, Italy in 1894 or 1895. Their only child – Nicola Vito Giorgio – was born in Castel di Sangro on November 9, 1896. A few weeks later, presumably from complications related to childbirth, Marianna died.

Lines 24 and 25 show Adriano and Nick Giorgio

Lines 24 and 25 show Adriano and Nick Giorgio’s Arrival in New York in December 1904

We don’t know much about Nicola’s early life. He spent at least his first seven years in Italy. Adriano came to western Pennsylvania sometime around 1896 or 1897 but we’ve yet to find his first immigration record. After getting established and having several children with his second wife, Custode Iacobucci, Adriano went back to Italy and brought his son Nick to Pennsylvania. Scroll down to lines 24 and 25 on the ship’s log to see that Adriano and Nick arrived in New York on December 19, 1904 on the S.S. Roma.

(And by the way – to illustrate why it is important to revisit your genealogical discoveries from time to time, I just realized that the person named at line 29 on this page – Nicola Scocciamarra – is coming to America to visit his uncle Ciro Giorgio of Dunbar PA. I need to revisit the family tree but my guess is that this would be the son of one of Ciro and Adriano’s sisters who stayed in Italy. This adds an important bit of information to help verify family connections that are indicated  in the Italian genealogy records I’ve seen.)

Nick George's Death Certificate

Nick George’s Death Certificate

Even though Adriano left Pennsylvania in 1912, (leaving behind Custode and their eight children) Nick stayed in PA for the rest of his life. His youngest daughter Irene has shared many recollections about her father. He sounds like a fun-loving guy. He worked hard, wrote songs and  made wine in his basement. I would really love to taste some of Nick George’s homemade wine! Nick died in 1974 of stomach cancer.

Counting Adriano, his first wife Marianna and their son Nick – we’re at 3.

NickandMaryGeorge.1915

Wedding Picture – Nick George and Mary Giampaolo 1915

Nick married Mary Giampaolo who was born in Pennsylvania to parents who came from Italy. Nick and Mary had six children: Andrew, Frank, Anthony, Marian, Nick and Irene. I’m not up to speed on all of Nick’s children or how many times they married, so to keep our counting simple, let’s add one spouse for each of them, plus Nick’s only wife Mary, and we’re now at 16. (Coincidentally and supporting the idea that Italian immigrants were a close-knit bunch, Mary’s older sister was married to Guiseppe Iacobucci.  They were both born in Italy but married in New Castle PA in on September 20, 1896.)

I do know that Irene Veri, Nick’s youngest daughter, is the only one of Nick’s children still living. I also know that she has an amazing memory and I am deeply indebted to her for sharing so many personal recollections. She is an amazing hostess, a devoted grandmother and SHARP as a tack!

At some point not too long after Adriano’s first wife died, he left Castel di Sangro, presumably leaving his young son Nick, with relatives. Although I’ve yet to find his original immigration records, by 1897 or 98, he was living in Pittsburgh. I have assumed that Adriano met Custode in Pittsburgh, but some family members heard that they came to America together. Whatever the case, they married in Pittsburgh in February 1899. Details of Marriage License

Wedding Photo 1899

Wedding Photo 1899

Adriano and Custode, who were sometimes known as Andy and Christine George, had at least eight children together.  They settled in Dunbar, PA and began running a grocery store. Recent information from one of their grandchildren (thanks Christine!) suggests that they may have moved between Dunbar and New Castle in the early 1900s. Their second son Gene was born in Dunbar in December 1901 but their third son Joseph was born in New Castle, PA in 1903.

It is clear that by about 1910, Adriano and Custode were property owners of at least three lots in Dunbar. It is also clear that they were having financial difficulties. Shortly after forcing Custode to sign over all three properties to him, Adriano declared bankruptcy and left Dunbar for good. Custode Iacobucci – One Tough Lady!

From Custode’s testimony in the lawsuit and recollections of descendants, it seems that Adriano was afraid that people were out to get him.  Perhaps this is why he returned to Italy but whatever the reason, he left behind a wife and eight young children. Custode deserves a lot of credit for raising them. Of all of the Giorgio descendants she is the one I would most like to visit with today.  (I’ve heard she tended to favor her sons and grandsons and only remembered her granddaughters by which of her sons they belonged to, but I’d still like to spend an afternoon with her.)

Here are the names and birth dates of Adriano’s and Custode’s children born in America:

Frederick William George – November 12, 1899
Luigino (Gene) Anthony George – December 18, 1901
Joseph Lloyd George – July 19, 1903
Philomena (Phil) George – June 3, 1905
Lena Agnes George – November 21, 1906 (insert birth certificate)
Hubert Allen George – September 23, 1908
Lydia Lucia George – December 18, 1909
Victor Americus George – April 1, 1911

There is one other child born to Custode in 1912 – a son named Francis. There is some question whether Francis was Adriano’s son or whether Custode may have been a bit too friendly with one of the boarders. I don’t think there is anyone alive today who can answer that question with certainty but you view my take on the matter here.Who Was Jimmy Versace?  I will add that more than one descendant has told me that they’d heard that Custode was unfaithful to Adriano.

Lydia Lucia dies of Scarlet Fever at age 7

Lydia Lucia dies of Scarlet Fever at age 7

With the exception of Lydia Lucia who died of scarlet fever when she was seven, all of Custode and Adriano’s children married. Adding one for Custode and 18 for the nine children with one spouse each, we’re now at 35 ! (Obviously Lydia Lucia who died when she was 7 did not marry, but since Fred married twice, it simplifies the math!)

I’ll add more details in another post but the grandchildren of Adriano and Custode bring our grand total for Adriano’s line to 54. I am happy to be in contact with at least one descendant from each of Adriano’s and Custode’s children, with the exception of Francis. I know that many of you are reading this post so don’t be shy about sharing what you know about your grandparents, parents, cousins and siblings.

So we’ve covered two of the four Giorgio boys plus their children and grandchildren and our count now stands at 75. I think it is pretty easy to see how the Giorgio family reunions in the 1970s and 1980s often had 100+ people in attendance.

Next week we’ll meet Pasquale Giorgio and explore his branch of the tree.

Trovando Famiglia has a Facebook Page

As part of my recent WordPress course – Blogging 201 – I’m learning a lot of great and useful techniques. I’m learning to extend my “brand” by using other social media outlets such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram etc.

So this morning I created a Facebook page for Trovando Famiglia – the family history blog that captures all we’ve learned about our Giorgio ancestors from San Vito Chietino, Italy. I hope it will inspire dialog, allow more people to read about and contribute to the family stories and perhaps even reach more relatives we haven’t met yet, maybe even some relatives in Italy!

I am flattered that several Giorgio descendants have expressed appreciation for my efforts over the past 18 months to capture the details of the Giorgio family story. There is only so much I can glean from the public records so it really is your stories that add the rich and vibrant detail that make this blog interesting. Don’t be shy – add your piece of the puzzle by leaving a comment in the comment box at the very end of this post or on Facebook.

Add your missing piece!

Add your missing piece!

One thing I’ve learned over the past two years of conducting genealogy research. There will be discrepancies in anyone’s family story. Sometimes the “official” records get it wrong. Sometimes two people observe the same event or hear the same story and remember it differently. I am always happy to hear from anyone who has a different take on something I’ve written here. I will always try to indicate a source for the “facts” that I recount but there are definitely times when I speculate on a certain things.

Later today I will continue the series I started last Sunday on the descendants of the four original Giorgio boys. In case you missed it here’s a link for that post. 21 and counting We left off at 21 after counting Ciro and Rosario’s children and their spouses and children. Today we’ll boost that number substantially when I write about Adriano and Custode.

Ciao for now.