New here - looking for history (aren't we all? :)

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mterrian
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New here - looking for history (aren't we all? :)

Postby mterrian » 13 Oct 2008, 03:56

Hello everyone,

I'm a decendent of the DiCicco/Soave group of families in Sant'Elia Fiumerapido. My grandfather emigrated in 1905 and eventually settled in Detroit. Still sifting through many documents and having a lot of fun with it. What a wonderful place you have here!

I'm a writer, and am trying to gather materials to try to piece together what it would have been like to live in a town like Sant'Elia at the turn of the (last) century, when my grandfather left it as a young boy. I'm intensely curious about what it must have looked, smelled, felt like then.

I've tried a few web sites, looked at photos, and searched for books, but I'm really not turning up very much that helps me learn about what peoples' lives were like, what the economy was based on, anything that would help give me a "snapshot" of my family in their ancestral town.

If you were looking for such things.......where would you look?

Big thanks in advance for any ideas -- anything at all would help! :D

Margaret

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PeterTimber
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Re: New here - looking for history (aren't we all? :)

Postby PeterTimber » 13 Oct 2008, 13:47

Dear Margaret I know exactly how you feel about wanting to know, feel, hear,interpret the history of your family town of origin having gone thru that many years ago and appreciate hearing this from you about this.

you do not say if you can read Italian but surmising that you might want to go thru many websites on Sant'Elia Fiumerapido in any event you can go to www.tiscali.it and just put in the name of the town, Sant' EliaFiumerapido and review the websites.

The turn of the century in Southern and even into central Italy as well as Sicily was not a very pretty time economically. When Italy became unified in the 1870's Garibaldi and the Northern Nobility and industrialists dewscended upon the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies which is today part of Italy and in doing so sgtripped tghe land of all its indicutrail wealth, forcing many people out of jobs, the Kingdoms treasury and factories were carried north leaving the south destitute, barren and landless by taking over huge swaths of agricultural land reducing famers to almost serfdom and starvation. The USA at that time was just coming out of our own Civil war and the industrial revolution was taking place and th e need for manpower was huge tobuild, roads, dams,subways, factories, industrial plants and mining etc. Agents went into southern Italy where millions were starving and miserable, uneducated and recruited firt the men to work for a year or less and then come home to Italy but then slowly millions came tothe USA andbroguht their families. We inherited all their labors which we enjoy today.

Hope you see your town within this historical contaxt. =Peter=

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mterrian
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Re: New here - looking for history (Sant'Elia Fiumerapi

Postby mterrian » 23 Oct 2008, 03:31

Peter,

You are so wonderful! Thank you so very much for that sad but fascinating story. It is all coming together in pieces and I am finally starting to get a picture of things.

My grandfather, as far as I can tell, was Giovanni DiCicco, b 08 Jan 1889, who eventually ended up in Detroit, where I was born. Now, finally, I can start to see a picture of why he left.

I have my trusty Italian dictionary handy, and some translator web sites to help me through the worst of things, and I will dig into some Sant'Elia history sites to try to find photographs and history.

Again, thank you Peter, for helping me on my journey.

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nuccia
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Re: New here - looking for history (aren't we all? :)

Postby nuccia » 23 Oct 2008, 07:10

mterrian,

I'm not sure if this will help at all but "lady emmy" has extracted some records from Sant'Elia which you can find here:

http://www.gentedimareitaliangenealogy. ... inone.html

You can also contact her through that site and see if she can offer you anything since her family was also from there.

And this wonderful website has lots of information on the town, but much of it is in French. I believe there is a translator and the webmaster is very nice..

http://www.salvatoreandco.net/accueil/index.php

There is also a forum attached to the site, and other goodies. Good luck and let us know if it helps at all.
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