Monthly Archives: August 2013

Italian War Orphans

Italian War Orphans:
With the war casualties and even larger numbers of pows meant that many Italian children were left with only their mother to support them or on their own. And with a collapsing economy this was very difficult. When the fighting reached Italy, villages and cities were devestated all the way up the peninsula. Many children were killed or wounded and in many cases lost both parents. Large numbers of children were displaced as well as many orphaned. We have very few details on the dimensions of the problem or the measures taken by Italian authorities to deal with it at this time. In many cases this meant children who had lost their fathers and the mothers were unable to support them. Many were taken care of by extended Italian families. But larger numbers of children were on their own or with mothers who could not support them. This was a horrific time for these children, to be left homeless and alone.

Finding Dave’s Family

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I had the honor of being able to help out my dear friend Dave who was given up at birth.  Dave was adopted by a wonderful family but always had the yearning to know who his birth parents were.  He came to me one day and asked if I could help him locate his family, Of course I said yes, and that’s when my adventure started. He had his mother and fathers names, so I started my search there. He had heard that he had 4 brothers. I found his father within hours, and learned that he had justed passed away a few years before, and that his father had one brother who was also deceased and a cousin who also was deceased. I did learn he came from a prominent family in Skokie, Il.

His mothers research took me a lot longer to find all the pieces to this puzzle, because womens names change through marriages. Not like in European countries where the women keep their given name.

I went to a genealolgy conference and met Jeanne Larzalere Bloom who specialized in orphans and abandon children. We discussed Dave’s situation and she advised me to get divorce records if they were divorced.

I did find out that his parent divorced in the 1950′s so I ordered the divorce records from the County Clerks office and waited about 2 weeks till they came in. I finally got the call they where there. So I went down town and started going over the divorce records, and they were very sad and hard to read. There was alot of abuse, but I learned from the records that he had a sister, no brothers where listed. I also found his grandmothers name and a aunts name. So I copied all the records and gave a call to fill him in on what I had learned.

Next I started with his grandmothers name and found the obituary, which listed his mothers current name and the town she lived in and a brother and his 2 sisters. His older brother and sister both had passed away. Ugh But he did have a living sister, Yeah. The reason why the brother and younger sister was not listed in the divorce records where because they had different fathers.

So my research went back to his mother, and I found out she also had passed away a few years back, so all I had was his younger sister. It was heart breaking to have to call him and tell him they were all deceased except his younger sister.

So then I started on his deceased brother and found his wife and childrens name.So we contacted her and she told me that his younger sister was in a group home with Autism, she gave me the group home name and phone number. I called Dave back that evening and told him my finally good news he was very excited and couldn’t wait to meet his sister.  So the next day Dave called the group home and he explained the situation. The owners of the group home were so happy to know that she had a brother. And so  we set up a date when Dave could meet  his little sister for the first time. It was so exciting for him, he said he always wanted a little sister.

The picture above is Dave and His Little sister.

Dave keeps in close contact with his little sister and hopes to have her move to Chicago in the near furture.

Never think that there is a dead end, keep asking question, the answers are out there.

Today at FGS

Today was a great day at FGS. I have met so many nice people, who are so willing to help you in your quest.  I will be writing a course for National Institute For Genealogical Studies, on Land, notarial, and adoptions.  And will be talking to Archives.com to write several articles on Italian Orphans.  I’am so excited.  It’s going to be a busy rest of the year.  Yeah

I also had the honnor of seeing Dr. John Phillip Colletta today twice, wow is he a dynamic speaker. He is so wity and funny, one of the best speakers I’ve seen on top of being Italian. He had everyone  at the luncheon laughing so hard, he really can tell a great story. I hope someday to be half the speaker he is, he truely loves what he does and it surely comes across.

I also had the honnor of seeing Jeanne Larzalere Bloom, she  is another great speaker. She lectures on Orphan, abanden children. I have learned so many great things from her. That will be my next blog so stay tuned.

 

 

 

Welcome to Italian Family Genealogy

family tree1This is my first post to my website.  I became intrested in Genealogy several years ago when I was looking for my Grandfathers birth record who was an orphan. I remember the day that I found his birth record, I was so excited, but couldn’t read it, ugh. But there happen to be a women who was at the family history center who could read it. It was bitter sweet. I remember going home and sitting in my back yard wondering why, Why did his mother abanden him in a strangers front yard. Who was she, what happen to bring her to the decision she made.  And most of all I thought who am I. I’m still searching, I had my uncle take a DNA test, in hopes maybe I will get the answer. In the last couple weeks I have gotten 2 hits on his DNA match, it’s could be a break threw, I’m keeping my fingers crossed.

Today I’m at the FGS Convention in Fort Wayne, Indiana.  I attended my first Genealogy Bloggers  dinner tonight, it was very enlighting to all the new programs the Family History Centers are coming out with this year and in 2014.  They are a wonderful organization with so many wonderful people that are so willing to help you out.

This is going to be a great week, so many seminars to go to and looking forward to all the great speakers, and making lots of new friends.

Right now I’m going to watch Who Do You Think You are, I’m so glad they brought the show back.

I look forward to posting my adventures in my Italian research and sharing my findings with you all.