I find Genealogy fascinating. So far, I've been able to trace my family back to a little town in Italy right outside of Naples, called Acerra.
In 1972, I went with my Mother and Father to visit relatives in Acerra. I was quite surprised to learn that the Italian that I learned in high school was not the Italian that my compares (or "goombahs") spoke! They laughed at my "poor Italian" and made fun of me. Well, the laugh was on them as Mom and I spoke "English" while we were there, and they couldn't understand one bit of it! None of them! Mom and Dad spent the next two weeks with my relatives while I visited Mom's aunt in Roma. We got along famously, and she was so surprised that I spoke such fluent Toscana (the high Italian language). I then went up into Firenze (Florence), and visited many art galleries and the Palazzo Vecchio. I continued into the Italian Alpes and finally came back to the little provincial town of Acerra.
While I was in Roma, I was able to see Michelangelo's Pieta. There was major danage done by a psychotic who took a hammer to Her fingers. I became friendly with a guard there, and he let me in the (then closed) exhibit to see a little of the restoration. I got a chance to touch the Pieta, and gaze at Her Beauty. I also visited the Sistine Chapel, and that's another story...
We also met Dad's aunt (now deceased), who was a cloistered nun in a convent. It was truly a moving and tearful meeting for my Dad, who hardly ever showed these kinds of feelings. We first spoke to her behind windowed bars (part of being cloistered), but then the Mother Superior granted us a private visit at the convent doorway with my aunt! Goodness, she was about four feet ten inches tall! I guess she was standing on a box when we talked to her behind the "bars."
What does all this have to do with Genealogy? Well, it got me to thinking about where I came from, and through the years I developed a sense of being a "scribe" for the "Crisci Famiglia". In short, I took it upon myself to be the Record Keeper of the family. I have been able to find out that my Grandmother came over on the SS Berlin in 1912. We also have an LDS (Mormon) Family Record Center in Deerfield, not far from my home. The Mormon faith deals extensively in Genealogy. All in all, it would have been a LOT easier if I started working on my familt tree while overseas, but hindsight is always better after the fact.
When I figure
out how to include my "family tree," I'll be sure to add it to
my web page. Who knows, you might find one of your ancestors swinging
from my tree!
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