Italian migration to Belgium - Help with surnames

Over 25 million Italians have emigrated between 1861 and 1960 with a migration boom between 1871 and 1915 when over 13,5 million emigrants left the country for European and overseas destinations.
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Italian migration to Belgium - Help with surnames

Postby ItalianBelgian » 17 Dec 2010, 08:16

I’m new to this forum and saw it whilst trawling through the internet attempting to discover a surname. I’ve been going through countless genealogy sites for weeks and thought that someone here may be able to help.
My ancestors on my grandmother’s father’s side of the family immigrated to Flanders, Belgium from Italy, I have been told sometime between the 1770s and 1800s. There are three female names all clumped together at the beginning of the index lent to me by my grandmother making me believe that the first Italians in her family were sisters, unfortunately there are no surnames after them which is extremely frustrating so these are only given names:
Maria Theresia – B. 18.3.1770
Maria Alex. B. 22.9.1774
Maria Lucia – B. 11.9.1777

As I have said there are no surnames with these first names, although I believe one or more of these women married into the Van Der Stricht family, the surname of my grandmother’s grandmother.
I am aware that this is an incredibly long shot and that there is not much to go on but would anyone happen to have any information on these people and their surname(s) or any information about Italian migration to France and Belgium and any surnames that may have been attributed with it. I have gone through hundreds of sites including ‘familysearch.org’ so any new info would be extremely appreciated.
Thanks.
Miles

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Re: Italian migration to Belgium - Help with surnames

Postby ForzaItaliaPgh » 17 Dec 2010, 17:16

Do you know where in Italy they came from? Unfortunately, "Maria" is a very, very common name, maybe if you know the town, and it is small, you can narrow your search down my finding info on everyone born in that town on that day with that name and via a process of elimination widdle the list down to who could actually have migrated to Belgium. Also, if they were indeed sisters you would be able to use that to find the family. I don't know, it looks like a lot of work and a real long-shot w/o any surnames. :(
Researching BARONTINI family from Tuscany

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Re: Italian migration to Belgium - Help with surnames

Postby ItalianBelgian » 17 Dec 2010, 17:46

Thanks for the reply, I know I'm really finding it difficult to get anywhere with this but im going to try and persevere. Would you be able to tell me where I could find a town to town database if one exists (or is 'familysearch.org' is my best bet) and do you know where I could find a list documenting the most common surnames in both the north and south of Italy, the details I have been given are very vague and I am not enirely sure where to start.
Kindest regards
Miles

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Re: Italian migration to Belgium - Help with surnames

Postby johnnyonthespot » 17 Dec 2010, 18:01

Speaking of longshots, just in case you weren't aware, "Maria" is also an Italian surname. See http://www.gens.labo.net/en/cognomi/gen ... nome=MARIA

and also http://www.paginebianche.it/execute.cgi ... &om=0&l=en
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Re: Italian migration to Belgium - Help with surnames

Postby ForzaItaliaPgh » 17 Dec 2010, 19:03

FamilySearch.org would probably be the best bet, but you have to know where they came from in Italy. Trying to find a Maria in Italy is like trying to find a needle in a stack of needles. Do you know which commune or at least which region of Italy they came from?
Researching BARONTINI family from Tuscany

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Re: Italian migration to Belgium - Help with surnames

Postby ItalianBelgian » 17 Dec 2010, 20:59

No I don't even know which region sadly, I know how difficult finding any informantion without a location or surname is, I don't think there's any realistic way of me tracking down these ancestors. :cry:

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Re: Italian migration to Belgium - Help with surnames

Postby johnnyonthespot » 17 Dec 2010, 21:38

ItalianBelgian wrote:No I don't even know which region sadly, I know how difficult finding any informantion without a location or surname is, I don't think there's any realistic way of me tracking down these ancestors. :cry:


Seriously, have you considered the possibility that Maria is their surname?
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Re: Italian migration to Belgium - Help with surnames

Postby ForzaItaliaPgh » 18 Dec 2010, 00:04

In the doc where you originally found them listed, where others listed surname, given name? It is odd that no surname is listed. Carmine's theory makes sense. I'd research that avenue before giving up.
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Re: Italian migration to Belgium - Help with surnames

Postby ItalianBelgian » 18 Dec 2010, 06:28

Thanks for the heads up, on the list I am working from peoples given names and surnames are the otherway round in certain circumstances. My grandfather's surname for example and now I'm looking everyone's given name and surname is the otherway around if they married into the family, he was of English and Irish heritage so he married my grandmother from outside the family. The women I'm refering to were Italian meaning they will have married into the family from the outside aswell, hence the possibility of Maria being a surname.
Thanks for the help it's hugely apprecated, i feel stupid for wanting to give up so easily now.
All the best
Miles


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