What records to get for foundlings?

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What records to get for foundlings?

Postby Squigy » 24 Aug 2010, 22:25

Ok, we went to the courthouse and got 2 documents: My great great grandmother's marriage record and her husband's naturalization record. On the marriage record, she is recorded as Jennie D'Andy, born Sept. 13 1889, and on the naturalization record she is recorded as Giovannina Maietta born in Sepino.

Now, given these facts, I think we can forget about the Grimandi/Grimani/Grimaldi thing. If she was illegitimate, chances are her name was indeed Clemanni, correct?

Would foundling records be recorded with the normal birth records? Are there any other records we should order aside from Nati Records?

I'm going to my FHC Sept 1st, so I want to get everything I need.

Thanks!
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Re: What records to get for foundlings?

Postby MaurizioPerrone » 24 Aug 2010, 22:36

The name on her birth act would be the official surname. For illegitimate child, the surname was probably fantasy surname given to the baby by the town official.

The births of foundling children are usually found with all the other birth acts for the town. If there are other records (like act of recognition) then there should be marginal notation on the birth act.
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Re: What records to get for foundlings?

Postby maestra36 » 24 Aug 2010, 23:18

Foundling civil birth records in Italy usually are found in Part II of the year in which the birth occurred. The child's name is usually invented by the town official when it is presented to him at the town hall. The birth record is not like a normal birth record, but is usually a description of what the child was wrapped in or wearing, whether it had any identifying marks on its body, whether a medal, ribbon, or note, etc, was left with the child in case the natural parents ever came back to reclaim it, etc. Also there is the name of the wetnurse who was assigned to breastfeed and take care of the child. In the case where the natural parents come back at some point to reclaim the child, you would find an act of recognition which, as Maurizio has stated above, would be noted in the margin of the child's birth record. In the act of recognition, you may find that the surname of the child was changed to the surname of the natural father, if he had married the child's mother after the child's birth and accompanied her to reclaim the child. A town notary is one person who legally could change the child's surname to that of the supposed natural father. I say "supposed" because, in those days, there was no DNA evidence to prove that the person who said he was the natural father actually was. So if a couple went to a town notary or other town official and could describe how they had left the child-what it was wearing, how it was wrapped, etc, and they had witnesses who could attest to their identities, this was their way of proving that the child was, in fact, their natural child.
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Re: What records to get for foundlings?

Postby Squigy » 25 Aug 2010, 01:40

Thank you both for your help.

If I'm not mistaken, her father was planning on reclaiming her. The story goes, when she was 12, her father said "If you stay with me, you can have anything you want". But she chose to stay with her "adoptive" parents.

I'll let you know if I find anything!
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Re: What records to get for foundlings?

Postby Squigy » 14 Oct 2010, 00:38

No luck! I looked through almost every name in 1888 and 1889 (she was born in 1888, though) and didn't find one match. I'm going back next week to look again, and to order Campobasso town records. But John Armellino didn't find anything when he looked for me. Not only that, it seems Sepino is a bit far to travel to find a wet nurse.

Anyway, I did, however, find the birth record for her wet nurse's first child (that died), so that helps. Is there a chance the family just kept this whole thing "off the record"? Of course, this wouldn't explain the name Elisa Clemanni, would it?

Any thoughts on what I should do next?
My Italian surnames:

Caserta: Maietta, Rossano, Tessitore, Negro, Peluso, Musone

Campobasso: D'Andrea, Barile

Catanzaro: Fiorelli/Fiorillo, Romito
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Re: What records to get for foundlings?

Postby Eleven » 14 Oct 2010, 16:08

What a mess they made of these names, back then. I have 2 "parents unknowns". One on my mothers side, one on my fathers side.

The fantasy name they used for the one on my mothers side, would give NO indication that he was a foundling. Today, anyone on earth with this name, is connected to me.

The one on my fathers side, is another story. This guy used variations of 3 surnames. All of his kids have a different variation..which they passed down to their kids (whichever variation they used).

Last night, on ancestry, miracle of all miracles..I found what I believe to be a 100% sure connection. And we are connected by this foundling.

I emaled the person last night, and I sure do hope he replies. His ancestor is Salvatore (3 namer), who is my great great grandfather. Salvatores son..is my great grandfather, and one of the daughters is connected somehow to this man that I found.

In reading over, what he has in his tree on ancestry, I see the note, that he could find NO siblings for this daughter. LOL. I got news for him..she has about 5..only, they all have different surnames. I knew about this 3 named thing, before I even started researching..but, if I didnt..I would also think my ancestor was an only child.

I am chuckling a bit, because of all of the people, that I have in this particular branch of my tree..I would find a connection with someone for the part of it with the screwed up names..lol
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