Hello everybody... this is my first post! I am Catherine from Australia and I'm dearly hoping someone here might be able to help. My grandmother was born in Milan, but she died before my mum got to know her. Mum was only 9 years old.
My mother is now over 80 and is desperate to find out about her Italian heritage. So I am travelling to Italy this month to see what I can find out for her.
I don't have a lot of information, as a nine-year-old she wasn't left many records. This is what I have:
Rodolfo Sanna, Milan (born around 1858) Not sure where he was born but he seemed to live in Milan most of his adult life. Possibly living in Yorkshire England around 1886 as a foreign correspondent Possibly married to Elizabeth Ann Andrew in 1887. What I do know is that Rodolfo had a son called Rodolfo Salvatore Sanna, and I found a Baptism in Yorkshire, England in 1887 for a child named Rodolfo Salvatore Francesco Sanna. Father: Rodolfo Sanna, Mother: Elizabeth Ann Sanna (formerly Andrew)
1886 Oct Age: 28 Marriage: Yorkshire North Riding Rodolfo marries Elizabeth. Index Folio 9d, page 645.
1887 13 Mar Age: 29 Occupation: Chorlton cum Hardy, Lancashire, England: Foreign Correspondent, per son, Rodolfo's Baptism record
1887 Apr Age: 29 Address: Milano, Lombardia, Italia. No Further records found in England after the birth and baptism of their son, Rodolfo Salvatore Francesco Sanna. It is a guess that Elizabeth and Rodolfo move to Milan, Italy.
Now for his son, Rodolfo Salvatore Sanna He married an Australian lady, Elsie Muriel Roberts in Queensland Australia in 1908. He brought his new bride to Milan for the birth of his daughter: Ada Elizabetta Clementina Sanna (born 29 Jan 1909 in Milan), and second daughter, Carla Giovanna Sanna (born 1911 in Milan)
Ten years later in 1919 Elsie and her two daughters travel alone without Rodolfo Salvatore to Australia. Elsie is listed as a widow. It is possible that Rodolfo Salvatore was killed in the war, but I don't know how to find out for sure.
This is all I know.
Any help at all would be appreciated. I only have a very short time to spend in the archives in Milan but it would be wonderful to come back with some information for Mum, a photograph of the house would be great, but to meet a living relative would be fantastic.
Thanks so much, Catherine
PS The line is as follows Rodolfo Sanna Rodolfo Salvatore Francesco Sanna Ada Elisabetta Clementina Sanna Patricia Anne Smith Then me, Catherine.
Dear Catherine, my name is Sergio Sbalchiero and I live in Italy, near Venice. I am an historical researcher and I conduct research on the Great War. I know where Rodolfo Salvatore Sanna died and where he was buried. He died for disease in 1918, 22 october in the field hospital 197 in Conscio, a little village between Mestre and Treviso. He was buried in Conscio's cemetery and there is still a stone with his name on the perimetral walls of cemetery. He was a lieutnant of the 17 artillery regiment, field artillery. If you want a stone's photo, I can send it. regards Sergio Sbalchiero
Dear Sergio I thank you so much for this information. It has been very difficult finding information in Italy. I went to Milan and Rome last year and all I was able to find was his name on a wall at museum, ’Granatiere di Sardegna’ in Rome to indicate he died during the war. With this information from you, perhaps I was wrong with the information I found in Rome. Perhaps the name Sanna on the wall was not for him. Please see the attached link to the travel blog called 'Finding Rodolfo' where I wrote about it at the time.
I will be returning to Italy within the next year and hope that I can visit his grave stone.
I would love however if you could send me a picture if its not too much trouble. My mother is still alive, however is now 83 and failing health. She has recently asked me to assist her to go through old photos so that she can pass on to me information about distant relatives. She is now the only living person that can identify them, so this is an important project and time is of the essence.
Once again, thank you Sergio for getting in touch with me and providing me with this hard to track down information.
Do you have any idea how I can find out where the family home is? I think that would be where he lived when he joined up (his wife and two daughters would have been living there with his father I think, so it was probably his father's house) I would love to go visit and take a photo. What I would love even more is to find some relatives in Italy!
In the doubt that you don't have it, this is the page where you can see that Rodolfo Sanna, son of Rodolfo Sanna was born in England on 15 january 1887, was inscripted to the military service in Milan, died on 22 october 1918 as Mr. Sergio Sbalchiero wrote you:
Dear Catherine, no problem about the photo. I usually use dropbox. If you have a mail I can invite you to my folder and you can see the images. I'm sorry, but I had no idea about finding your old familiy's house in Milan. I fear too many years passed. kind regards Sergio Sbalchiero
Hello Laura, please forgive me for not responding sooner. My family thank you so much for this information. It really does bring it all together for us now. Before, I was just guessing - but this information you have supplied confirms my individual research. Again, thank you very much for your response and assistance.
Very kind regards, Catherine Plunkett (Sanna family)