Mysterious Deaths.

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mitchell446
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Mysterious Deaths.

Postby mitchell446 » 14 May 2015, 03:23

I have been researching the Scarito line in my family tree and came across something strange. My 4x great grandmother was a Teresa Papia. She married Giuseppe Scarito and had several kids, all occuring within the Agrigento province in Sicily. Among those was a Teresa Scarito (1877-1879). As I was researching and indexing her death record in the Agrigento Civil records, I noticed that the record adjacent to hers was also her mothers, Teresa Papia. It is stated that she died on the same day as her daughter, Teresa Scarito, and even within the hour. How did both of them die on the same day? Was it common for a disease to wipe out part of the family? Could an accident have occured? It is also a family legend that the family was associated with the Sicilian Mafia. Is it possible that the mafia might have been involved? Or is this all just a coincidence? What is the most likely reason for this to happen? Unfortunately I just started my Italian genealogy and I am not too familiar with how people died in the area. I will appreciate any help one may provide. Thanks.
-Mitchell

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Re: Mysterious Deaths.

Postby PippoM » 14 May 2015, 12:48

In what town did this happen? (Just to see if images are online...)
Giuseppe "Pippo" Moccaldi

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Re: Mysterious Deaths.

Postby carubia » 14 May 2015, 15:49

mitchell446 wrote:Was it common for a disease to wipe out part of the family?
It sometimes happened. Within the same hour is unsual, though. Were there an unusually large number of deaths that year in that town? You would see that in flu pandemics, such as the famous Spanish flu of 1917-18 or the global one that originated in Sicily in 1832-33 and wiped out about 5% of one town in Agrigento that I studied. Whole families would die, but generally one-by-one, on different days or weeks.

mitchell446 wrote:Could an accident have occurred?
Sure, that's a possibility, too. I saw one case in 1855 where a father and son died in an accident on the same day (I think in a mining accident), but it was reported as an "Atto di Morte Repentina," not with the usual death records.

Probably the most common cause of a parent and child dying together is in childbirth, but you say the daughter was 2 at her death, right?

How old was the daughter?
Was this in Aragona?

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Re: Mysterious Deaths.

Postby carubia » 14 May 2015, 17:11

Was it in Sant'Angelo Muxaro? On 18 Jul 1879? At 8:05 and 8:10 am. Teresa Papaia's death was reported 20 mins after Teresa Scarito's, by 2 men for each, one of whom is the same person on both records.

The death record for Teresa Scarito says her parents were Giuseppe Scarito and Teresa Infantino, but the death record for Teresa Papia says her husband was Carmelo Scarito. Teresa Scarito's death record says her mother was still living, but maybe that's because it was reported 20 mins before the mother's death record (but after she had died). Teresa Papia was 50 years old in her death record, making her about 48 at the time of her daughter's birth (which is not impossible, but unusual to say the least).

Are you sure these 2 people are really mother and daughter? Why?

The records don't indicate the cause of death.

This is Teresa Papia (rec #41). Teresa Scarito is on the previous sheet, rec #40.
https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/T ... 66-25611-2

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Re: Mysterious Deaths.

Postby PippoM » 15 May 2015, 10:11

I'd definitely say they were NOT mother and daughter:

- father/husband name is different
- surnames of mother and of the deceased woman are different
- address where death took place is different
Giuseppe "Pippo" Moccaldi

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Re: Mysterious Deaths.

Postby mitchell446 » 17 May 2015, 03:22

Thanks for all the replies. Didn't think I would receive this much assistance.
And yes the town was Sant'Angelo Muxaro between Teresa Scarito and Teresa Papia. I would like to say though that what I had said is incorrect. I stated that Teresa Papia was Teresa Scarito's mother but infact she is her grandmother. Teresa Scarito's parents were Giuseppe Scarito and Teresa Infantino. Giuseppe's parents were Carmelo and Teresa Papia. I poorly wrote the question and thanks for pointing it out to me.

I have looked through the death records and nothing stands out as there being a disease. Many people died that year with the same last names as did years afterwards. Teresa Scarito was only 2 years old so she would be nowhere near a mine or industrial place for an accident to have occurred. I am honestly stumped about what could have happened.

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Re: Mysterious Deaths.

Postby carubia » 17 May 2015, 06:23

It could have just been a coincidence. Considering that the GM and daughter died in different houses, I see no reason to suspect the involvement of the mafia (not necessarily that I would think they were involved if the deaths had occurred under the same roof).


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