Thomas Sclafani

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Thomas Sclafani

Postby Shercahn » 12 May 2015, 06:56

Hello,
I'm fairly new to genealogy research (about 2 years) and I'm at a dead end with my father's maternal line. The only information I have on my great-grandfather based on US documents are that his name is Thomas Sclafani born May 8, 1888 in Sciacca, Sicily. He immigrated to the US in 1899 at 10 years old. We also have his WWI draft card and some census documentation. He died around 1956 from Tuberculosis. He married Anna Viders and they had 6 children: Peter, Libby, Frances, Francesco Gustave, Rhoda, and Sylvia. I've made contact with Gus's family and Peter's family and they have no information either. I'm part of Frances' family. I've tried researching the nascita's but I am having difficulty figuring it out since I do not speak/read Italian.

Does anyone have any further information on this man? I appreciate any further information or clues - like what Thomas would be on the records.

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Re: Thomas Sclafani

Postby suanj » 12 May 2015, 19:08

I cannot find Tommaso Sclafani Birth record Sciacca civil records... no on 8 may 1888.. maybe his first name at Birth was not Tommaso(Thomas)?? you said that he was just 10 old when immigrated in USA ... I believe that the his father was Pietro Sclafani and his mother Liboria Mandracchia.. Liboria is widowed in 1910 census and the your ancestor was Tomaso but on the ship's manifest I believe that his first name was Vincenzo


Tomaso Scafano

United States Census, 1910


Name:
Tomaso Scafano

Event Type:
Census

Event Year:
1910

Event Place:
Manhattan Ward 14, New York, New York, United States

Gender:
Male

Age:
22

Marital Status:
Single

Race:
White

Race (Original):
White

Relationship to Head of Household:
Son

Relationship to Head of Household (Original):
Son

Birth Year (Estimated):
1888

Birthplace:
Italy

Immigration Year:
1903

Father's Birthplace:
Italy

Mother's Birthplace:
Italy

Household Role Gender Age Birthplace
Liboria Mauiracca Head F 57 Italy
Tony Scafano Son M 17 Italy
Tomaso Scafano Son M 22 Italy
Harry Colgove Boarder M 22 New York

https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:M5M5-8BH
the trip of 1899
http://libertyellisfoundation.org/show- ... SUYiOw==/1

Liboria Mandracchia Sclafani and the daughter Giovanna Sclafani in a trip of 1903
http://libertyellisfoundation.org/show- ... SUYiOw==/1
at this time Pietro Sclafani was alive, but in 1910 Liboria was widowed...

I don't know if is the right family.. but I cannot find a Tommaso Sclafani 10 old, arrived in USA in 1899.. I found just a Vincenzo Sclafani 10 old, arrived in USa in 1899 with father Pietro, mother Liboria and other sibling.. but this Vincenzo was born in Sciacca on 15 oct 1889 #644
https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-1942-33394-6981-41?cc=2043548&wc=MC5P-3TL:349457201,349565501,349578802
so don't match the Birth date... maybe is another family.. your suggestions?
Regards,
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Re: Thomas Sclafani

Postby carubia » 12 May 2015, 20:35

I have a couple of dozen people with the surname Sclafani from Sciacca in my tree, but that part of the tree doesn't extend far enough to the present to connect to your family. I have many more with the name Mandracchia, but that branch of the family moved to Ribera in the mid-19th c. I'll try to see if I can find a connection, which would extend your tree to the 18th c.

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Re: Thomas Sclafani

Postby carubia » 12 May 2015, 21:02

OK, I think I've found them: I already had the parents of the person who is probably Pietro Sclfani in my tree: Francesco Sclafani and Francesca Fauci/Scaduto (Fauci is her father's surname, Scaduto is her mother's, she appears under both names in records, which was common in Agrigento province). Pietro was born in 1842. He probably had oldest children Francesco and Francesca. There's a death record for a Pietro Sclafani, b. abt 1842, in Manhattan from 1907. There's also a passenger record for a trip Pietro, b. abt 1842, made to NY with children Antonino and Giovanna Sclfani but Giovanna is crossed out. Antonino and Giovanna were headed to their mother Liborio Mandracchia . Pietro was to stay with his sons Gaetano and Francesco. All of them resided at 176 Elizabeth St. in NY. Gaetano is a name that was usually anglicized as Thomas, so maybe he was your GGF.

I'll look for Pietro & Liboria's marriage rec as well as Gaetano's birth rec to tie everything together and confirm my suspicions.

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Re: Thomas Sclafani

Postby carubia » 12 May 2015, 21:21

Liboria may have been born in 1852, with parents Antonino Mandracchia and Giovanna Speziale, but that's just speculation. We'll know when we find the marriage record (or Liboria's death record).

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Re: Thomas Sclafani

Postby suanj » 12 May 2015, 21:39

Visit my website:
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Re: Thomas Sclafani

Postby carubia » 12 May 2015, 22:08

I found their marriage rec (#90 in 1872). Here it is: https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/T ... ,349572401 (on the RHS)

I was wrong about Pietro's parents. He was actually a first cousin of the person I was thinking of. His father Stefano was the brother of the aforementioned Francesco. His son Stefano's marriage and death records in NY are also online, as well as the death record for his son Paul. The Liboria Mandracchia is also not the one born in 1852 but the one born in 1854 to Giuseppe Mandracchia and Lucia La Rocca (Giuseppe's mother was Liboria Sclafani). In any case, these people are in my tree on Ancestry now.

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Re: Thomas Sclafani

Postby carubia » 12 May 2015, 22:18

That census matches the Pietro & Liboria who had son's Stefano and Paul (and the name of Stefano's wife matches, too), but it doesn't seem to match the family on the passenger manifest that I found. Could there have been 2 couples Pietro Sclafani & Liboria Mandracchia?! :o

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Re: Thomas Sclafani

Postby carubia » 13 May 2015, 08:58

There were actually 2 different men named Pietro Sclafani who died in NY in 1907, one born about 1842 (who could be the son of Francesco) and one born about 1847 (who is probably the son of Stefano). In the ship's manifest that has Pietro (b. ~1843) traveling with children Antonino and Giovanna Sclafani to NY, it doesn't actually say that he was their father or that he was married to Liboria Mandracchia. It's possible that he was their uncle and he was going to his sons Gaetano and Francesco while the children were going to their mother Liboria Mandracchia.

Finding the birth records of Gaetano, Francesco, Giovanna, and Antonino might help sort this out.

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Re: Thomas Sclafani

Postby carubia » 13 May 2015, 11:47

I have some more info and questions:

The other Pietro Sclafani who died in 1907 was indeed the son of Francesco and Francesca. His wife was Vita Di Matteo and they married in Sciacca in 1870.

I have found the birth record for another child of Pietro & Liboria: Antonino Sclafani born 20 Nov 1886. This matches the age of Antonio on the 1905 census, but is considerably off from the age of Tony on the 1910 census. It's also way off from the age of Antonino on the passenger manifest, but I noticed something odd on that manifest: Above his name there's a word I can't make out and a number 18. If his age was 18 instead of 9, as it says next to his name, then his year of birth would be 1886. Can anyone look at this manifest and figure out what the word above Antonino Sclafani's name was?
http://interactive.ancestry.com/7488/NY ... turnRecord

I also found a tree on Ancestry (Stull, Redmond, Zimmerman, Seward, Crummitt) that has your Thomas Sclafani, b. 8 May 1888, and married to Anna Widers. He is also called "Gaetano" in the tree. The date of birth comes from a WWI draft registration card that has him as being born in NY. There is also a passenger manifest for Gaetano Sclafani from Sciacca in 1899, traveling by himself, to stay with a "brother" with a totally different surname. In a 1925 census (having him as born in Italy) he had wife Anna and children Peter, Bella, Frances, Gus, and Rhoda, which is definitely your family. Even though that tree has all these records attached to his profile, I'm not sure that they're all for the same person.

How do you know that Thomas Sclafani was born on 8 May 1888 in Sciacca?

Finally, I've checked 1886 to 1888 birth records in Sciacca so far and there no other Sclafani children born to a Pietro except the 1 that I found so far (Antonino). There is no Tommaso or Gaetano Sclafani, either. There was, however, a Gaetana Sclafani born on 10 May 1887 to Antonino Sclafani and Rosa Rizzuto, but it's probably just a strange coincidence.

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Re: Thomas Sclafani

Postby carubia » 13 May 2015, 12:18

It seems that the source of your info is the same 2 documents linked to that tree: A WWII draft card that has him as Thomas Sclafani, b. 8 May 1888 in NY, and a passenger manifest for Gaetano Sclafani that has him as 11 y.o. in Jul 1899, residing in Sciacca, although for the place of birth it only specifies Sicily, and going to stay with his brother Salvatore Marinello at 240 Elizabeth St. in NY. Two census have him as immigrating in 1899 and one in 1897.

The 1920 and 1925 censuses have him as an alien whereas the 1930 one said he had naturalized. I suggest searching for his naturalization records and also his death cert (from 1958, according to someone's tree on Ancestry). Those might have more clues as to his parents' names and place and date of birth.

Edit to add: I've now found both his WWI and WWII draft cards, and while they both have him as Thomas Sclafani, b. 8 May 1888, the WWI one does have his place of birth as Sciacca.

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Re: Thomas Sclafani

Postby carubia » 13 May 2015, 12:45

I have some more info about the Gaetano Sclafani on the passenger manifest. There is another manifest with a Francesca Sclafani, b. around 1886, with father Michele, going to stay with her brother Accursio Sclafani at 240 Elizabeth St., the same address that Gaetano was going to. Moreover, there is a family tree that has a Francesca Sclafani married to Lorenzo Marinello, the same surname as Gaetano's "brother." Probably that Salvatore Marinello in Gaetano's passenger manifest was his brother-in-law.

That Francesca Sclafani was born in May 1885 to Michele and Vincenza Venezia.

There was also a Francesca Sclafani born in Jan 1885 in Sciacca to Pietro & Liboria Mandracchia.

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Re: Thomas Sclafani

Postby Shercahn » 13 May 2015, 16:20

Just posting this so I can be notified (found the check box for that service).

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Re: Thomas Sclafani

Postby Shercahn » 13 May 2015, 16:31

And my big long reply disappeared :(

Okay, I've seen a lot of the information you are mentioning because I saw similar connections but also the holes in the information. I did latch onto Salvatore Marinello's family info because Grandpa mentioned there was an Uncle Tony. However he mentioned an Aunt Mary also but I think these "relations" are just good friends of the family. I found a marriage invitation for a Anthony and Mary DeRose and the wedding was at Rockaway Beach where the families lived.

Unfortunately I didn't start researching until after Grandpa had Lewey Body Dementia and this is his wife's family. I have Thomas' 1920, 1930 and 1940 census records and his WWI and WWII draft cards. I have also seen info on Geni Family and Ancestry but didn't feel comfortable enough making a connection. My Aunt is the one who said he died of TB and was a Taxi driver. She thought it was around 1956 but I'll do some research for 1958 instead for his death. That side of the family tended to do cremation so I probably won't find burial records.

You have done a lot of work and I appreciate it because I have too much uncertainty.

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Re: Thomas Sclafani

Postby carubia » 13 May 2015, 17:04

A few new developments:

1. I have a found a birth record for Gaetano Sclafani in Sciacca, from 1892 (10 Dec 1892). The parents are Michele and Vincenza Venezia. This is the Gaetano Sclafani mentioned in that ship's manifest from 1899, who was going to visit Salvatore Marinello. Here's the link:
https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/T ... ,349577201

I also found a census record for him from 1905, with his parents and brother Antonino:
https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/T ... cc=1463113

2. I have found another son of Pietro Sclafani and Liboria Mandracchia, the expected Giuseppe (expected because that was Liboria's father's name). I have his birth record from 1880. His 3 oldest children were named Pietro, Liboria, and Gaetano, all born in the US, with Gaetano about 1906. It's possible that Gaetano was his wife Vincenza's father's name, but it is also possible that Gaetano was named after an uncle, which was a common practice.

3. I searched birth indexes for every year from 1885 to 1892 so far and have not found
a birth record for Gaetano son of Pietro. I also searched the months of April and May for 1887 and 1888 one record at a time, to no avail.

4. I found another passenger record for Pietro and Liboria's trip over, with children Vincenzo, Lucia, and Paolo, to stay with their daughter Angela and 2 unnamed sons. Their son Stefano was also traveling on the ship separately, and he was to stay with his brother Antonino.

I'm turning my attention toward locating Thomas/Gaetano's marriage record to Anna now. Hopefully that is in the NYC Archives.


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