Genealogy Research

1800 Kilometers in a FIAT 500: Our Italian Genealogical Odyssey

by Peter Barbella & Gayann Tricarico Barbella

Two crazy senior citizens decide to visit the birthplaces of their Italian ancestors. They plan a trip to Sperone, Sassano, Palo del Colle and Vasto, places that are far off the beaten track. They execute the plan (almost) flawlessly. On the way, they see magnificent sights, meet wonderful people and find a goldmine of genealogical information. This is the story of their 13-day genealogical odyssey.

Papal Genealogy: The Families and Descendants of the Popes

by George L. Williams

The papacy has often resembled a secular European monarchy more than a divinely inspired institution. Roman pontiffs bestowed great wealth on their families and forged strategic alliances with other powerful families to increase their power. Pope Alexander VI (Rodrigo Borgia), for example, forced his daughter Lucrezia into a series of marriages for political reasons. When her marital alliance was no longer advantageous, as was the case in her second marriage, her husband was brutally murdered. Many papal families also intermarried in hopes of forming a hereditary papacy; at least two members of the Fieschi, Piccolomini, Della Rovere, and Medici families served as pope. Papal families since the early history of the church are fully covered in this comprehensive work. Genealogical charts graphically show the descendants of the popes, presenting in many cases the interrelationships between the papal families and their relationships with many of the leading families of Europe. Detailed histories examine the impact of the papacy on each pope’s family and how each influenced the history of the church.

Finding Your Italian Ancestors: A Beginner’s Guide

by Suzanne Russo Adams

For millions of Americans, home means Italy, where their roots started years ago. In Finding Your Italian Ancestors, you’ll discover the tools you need to trace your ancestors back to the homeland. Learn how and where to find records in the United States and Italy, get practical advice on deciphering those hard-to-read documents, and explore valuable online resources. The guide also includes maps, multiple glossaries, and an extensive bibliography.

Newark’s Little Italy: The Vanished First Ward

by Michael Immerso

Michael Immerso traces the history of the First Ward from the arrival of the first Italian in the 1870s until 1953 when the district was uprooted to make way for urban renewal. Richly illustrated with photographs culled from the albums and shoeboxes in the private collections of hundreds of former First Ward families from all across the United States, the book documents the evolution of the district from a small immigrant quarter into a complex Italian-American neighborhood that thrived during the first half of this century.

Sicilian Genealogy and Heraldry

by Louis Mendola

In Sicilian genealogy, a generation by generation lineage to the Late Middle Ages isn’t unusual. This definitive guide shows you how to do it. Sicily boasts the world’s best genealogical records, revealing the deep roots of a Sicilian identity and facilitating the construction of many pedigrees back to the 15th century. Based on the author’s 30 years of experience as a foremost expert in the field, this is the first complete guide ever published in English dedicated exclusively to Sicilian genealogical research. Its publication established a new subject category in the Dewey catalog.

My Family Tree Workbook: Genealogy for Beginners

by Rosa Chorzempa, Rosemary A. Chorzempa

This enjoyable, easy-to-use introduction to genealogy is designed specially for children. The pages provide space to document information on paternal and maternal sides of the family and instructions on the making of a basic family tree and pedigree chart. Includes information on autographs, family tales, heraldry, geography, foreign languages, and much more.

Italian-American Family History: A Guide to Researching and Writing About Your Heritage

by Sharon Debartolo Carmack

Italian Americans have customs, folkways, beliefs, and behaviors that are unique to their culture. According to Sharon DeBartolo Carmack, who in this work puts a whole new spin on family history research, familiarizing yourself with this culture is the best way to research the American generations of your Italian-American family history. In focusing on Italian-American culture, she has developed a unique approach not only to Italian-American genealogical research, but to genealogical research in general. Her goal is to show you how to document your heritage while placing each generation of your family in its cultural milieu and telling a factual and interesting story about the family.

Among other things, this book enables you to evaluate American records for information specific to Italian-American research, to appreciate the importance of Italian-American cultural perspective, and to write a readable and interesting family history. Above all else, though, this book is designed to help you enjoy researching the American generations of your Italian-American family history.

Your Guide to Cemetery Research

by Sharon Debartolo Carmack

Slogging through graveyards armed with a camera and notepad may sound morbid, but it is high adventure to most genealogists. Indeed, according to Carmack (Organizing Your Family History Search), cemetery research provides valuable information about the dearly departed, and it can actually become a family tradition. Carmack begins her demystification of the process with a discussion of the various records created at the time of death (death certificates, funeral home records, and more) and the task of locating an ancestor’s grave or cemetery. Once a burial site is established, a visit to the cemetery is in order. Carmack details the different kinds of cemeteries, grave decorations, and veterans’ markers and explains the benefits of analyzing a cemetery’s “community.” A very helpful chapter on capturing a tombstone’s information follows. Carmack covers American burial customs and the value (and pitfalls) of cemetery transcription and preservation projects. Finally, she offers ways to make cemetery visits a family affair. Examples of the artwork, epitaphs, and poetry found on tombstones are provided, as are an appendix of symbols and their meanings, a historical time line of America’s epidemics and disasters, and a medical glossary. Genealogists and local historians of all stripes will find this book invaluable. Highly recommended for public and genealogy libraries.

A Genealogist’s Guide to Discovering Your Italian Ancestors: How to Find and Record Your Unique Heritage

by Lynn Nelson

Amazon Reader’s review: “In one concise, well written book, Ms. Nelson has made researching an Italian family possible by giving simple, yet to-the-point directions to finding, reading, and understanding the documents and thought processes which will help you find your family. It helps make the past make sense, and is sized so that you can carry it with you to your research sites.”

Our Italian Surnames

by Joseph Fucilla

Our Italian Surnames covers every fact of Italian names and naming practices. It is here we discover, for example, that bussolari is Italian for compass, orsini means bear, and passalacqua stands for butterfly. In addition to sections on given names and the evolution of Italian surnames, the book contains chapters devoted to pet names, botanical names, geographical names, bird names, insect names, occupational names, and more. Our Italian Surnames is written for a popular audience, and each chapter of the book is a separate and informative unit in itself. Complete with a list of sources and an index of more than 7,500 names, Our Italian Surnames is a monument to the late Professor Fucilla’s lifelong interest in the language and names of Italia.