The nickname "Foca"

Are you looking for an Italian surname? Do you need more information about your family heritage?
This is the right place to start your genealogy search.
User avatar
JamesBianco
Staff
Staff
Posts: 879
Joined: 31 Dec 2004, 00:00
Location: Westfield, MA.
Contact:

The nickname "Foca"

Postby JamesBianco » 23 Aug 2006, 17:06

I have been having a very difficult time locating the manifest for my great grandfather "Frank" Farina. You might remember the thread I made about him and his wife Caterina Scalise (she ended his life with a hatchet in 1921).You can read her story here.

In any case there are three records he left in this country.

His WWI Draft Card as "Foca" Farina

The 1910 Census (line 59)

The 1920 Census with his wife's relative Giuseppe Scalise

According to the 1920 census he came in 1906. In 1910 he states he came in 1908. The latter is likely because he had a daughter born in Italy in 1907.

I am at my wits end looking for a manifest in Boston & New York for "Francesco Farina". Is FOCA a nick name for something else?

Hopefully someone knows, I swear this guy stowed away.

Jim Bianco

User avatar
rfornal
Staff
Staff
Posts: 522
Joined: 04 Aug 2006, 00:00
Location: Columbus, Ohio
Contact:

Re: The nickname "Foca"

Postby rfornal » 23 Aug 2006, 17:26

Do you have more information ... what town he came from, etc. Found these at Ellis Island.

Francescantonio Farina Caserta 1903 18
Francesco Farina Alt... 1901 17
Francesco Farina Altanlloe 1901 17
Francesco Farina Caserta 1903 18
Francesco Farina Caserta 1903 18
Francesco Farina Cenazzo 1902 16
Francesco Farina Vicari, Sicily 1907 23
Francisco Farina Havana 1905 21

These last two seem to have roughly the right dates ... hard to figure without more information. I'll try to get around to the old thread.

By the way, he could have conceived a daughter in 1906 that was born in 1907 Italy after he had left ... just a thought.

User avatar
JamesBianco
Staff
Staff
Posts: 879
Joined: 31 Dec 2004, 00:00
Location: Westfield, MA.
Contact:

Re: The nickname "Foca"

Postby JamesBianco » 23 Aug 2006, 17:37

Thanks Bob, actually I do not know (for certain) the town of origin. I know where his wife was born (Serrastretta, Catanzaro) but the town has no record of her marriage, only the birth act.

The manifest is key to determining his place of birth, that's why I am so frustrated. I would think he was from the Catanzaro or Reggio di Calabria area based on his wife's place of origin. I could be wrong of course.

I will check out those manifests, it's just that Sicily and Cuba don't sit so well with me (anything is possible I guess)

:)

User avatar
rfornal
Staff
Staff
Posts: 522
Joined: 04 Aug 2006, 00:00
Location: Columbus, Ohio
Contact:

Re: The nickname "Foca"

Postby rfornal » 23 Aug 2006, 17:45

Could he have been a crew member ... that would provide its own problems in locating the information. Maybe someone else could provide a lead in tracking crew manifests.

User avatar
jcsm400
V.I.P.
V.I.P.
Posts: 2109
Joined: 31 Jan 2006, 00:00
Location: USA

Re: The nickname "Foca"

Postby jcsm400 » 23 Aug 2006, 20:07

Hi Jim,

He may not have "stowed away," but could have come through Canada, like one of mine & many more.

Haven't looked at other thread.......Did he have children born here?....Have you gotten all their birth records.......This is where I found town of origin for mine.

Bob has a good point too.....maybe ask Elllis Island and/or NARA about separate crew manifests.

jcsm

jcsm
Researching in San Vitaliano, Napoli, Italy & Armento, Potenza, Italy.

User avatar
mfjp
Master
Master
Posts: 2210
Joined: 13 Aug 2004, 00:00
Contact:

Re: The nickname "Foca"

Postby mfjp » 23 Aug 2006, 22:47

JamesBianco wrote:I am at my wits end looking for a manifest in Boston & New York for "Francesco Farina". Is FOCA a nick name for something else?

Hopefully someone knows, I swear this guy stowed away.

Jim Bianco


As soon as I read your post I thought that FOCA was meant to be FSCO... afterwards I looked at the draft record... and I still thought it was meant to be FSCO....

Note that there are 2 military records for a Fsco or Francesco Farina with the exact birthdates.... the other one is all faded...

yob - 1882 for those wishing to check this out....

I'll keep my eye out :wink:

Maria

User avatar
JamesBianco
Staff
Staff
Posts: 879
Joined: 31 Dec 2004, 00:00
Location: Westfield, MA.
Contact:

Re: The nickname "Foca"

Postby JamesBianco » 24 Aug 2006, 00:46

Thanks much everyone, I'm off to check out that 2nd Military record.

He's just so elusive! I have to look into the Canadian option also, I never considered it, nor that he would have been part of the crew. Great angles for me to work on.

:)

User avatar
rfornal
Staff
Staff
Posts: 522
Joined: 04 Aug 2006, 00:00
Location: Columbus, Ohio
Contact:

Re: The nickname "Foca"

Postby rfornal » 24 Aug 2006, 01:13

Good luck!

User avatar
mfjp
Master
Master
Posts: 2210
Joined: 13 Aug 2004, 00:00
Contact:

Re: The nickname "Foca"

Postby mfjp » 24 Aug 2006, 01:32

Foca Farina 24 Mar 1882 White Haverhill, Essex, MA

Name: Foca Farina
City: Haverhill
County: Essex
State: Massachusetts
Birth Date: 24 Mar 1882
Race: White
Roll: 1685151
DraftBoard: 2

Link to Fsco Farina of MA WW1 Military record

View Record Frank Farina 24 Mar 1882 White Pittsburgh, Allegheny, PA

Name: Frank Farina
City: Pittsburgh
County: Allegheny
State: Pennsylvania
Birth Date: 24 Mar 1882
Race: White
Roll: 1908113
DraftBoard: 6
Link to Frank Farina of PA - Military WW1

whew... thought I was losing my mind... just couldn't find him after I had posted...

Well there you go... 2 Farina's with the exact birth dates...

James, anytime you need anything from Ancestry all you have to do is ask! :P

Maria :P

User avatar
nuccia
Staff
Staff
Posts: 4601
Joined: 20 Nov 2005, 00:00
Location: Toronto, Canada
Contact:

Re: The nickname "Foca"

Postby nuccia » 24 Aug 2006, 03:17

JamesBianco wrote:I have been having a very difficult time locating the manifest for my great grandfather "Frank" Farina. You might remember the thread I made about him and his wife Caterina Scalise (she ended his life with a hatchet in 1921).You can read her story here.

In any case there are three records he left in this country.

His WWI Draft Card as "Foca" Farina

The 1910 Census (line 59)
The 1920 Census with his wife's relative Giuseppe Scalise

According to the 1920 census he came in 1906. In 1910 he states he came in 1908. The latter is likely because he had a daughter born in Italy in 1907.

I am at my wits end looking for a manifest in Boston & New York for "Francesco Farina". Is FOCA a nick name for something else?

Hopefully someone knows, I swear this guy stowed away.

Jim Bianco


I was just reading the article about Caterina...wow....what a story! 8O Poor woman. The article sates Frank had been in the country about 15 years and since Albert was born in 1922 that would point to about 1907...

I also noticed the kids were living with their Mother in the 1930 Census so I assume Caterina was either not charged or pardoned. Do you know what happened and can you share?

User avatar
JamesBianco
Staff
Staff
Posts: 879
Joined: 31 Dec 2004, 00:00
Location: Westfield, MA.
Contact:

Re: The nickname "Foca"

Postby JamesBianco » 24 Aug 2006, 15:27

Thanks everyone! I can't tell you how much I appreciate all your help. Evidently he came into New York. Apparently Foca is primarily native to that region of Italy. They reversed the names Foca & Farina in the index... He arrived 23 May 1907 age 25 here is the manifest:

23 My 1907 Ellis Island (Line 4)

About Catherine (his widow and the woman in the article above who ended his life) she was eventually aquitted. I don't mean to speak ill of the deceased but evidently Foca was a horrible man, an abusive alcoholic who beat her and the children constantly. The last straw was when he threatened to kill the eldest child, Catherine had enough, chased after him with a small hatchet, knocked him down and ended his life. It is such a sad situation on all counts, she was never right after that, and was rather violent in her own right. I remember my mother telling me about her striking Mom's other grandmother during a discussion.

my scanner is down at the moment but here are a couple images...

Image

Image

she was pregnant at the time, and also had a small infant (Anthony) who they allowed to accompany her to prison.

here she is about 20 years later holding my Aunt I think.

Image


Jim

User avatar
rfornal
Staff
Staff
Posts: 522
Joined: 04 Aug 2006, 00:00
Location: Columbus, Ohio
Contact:

Re: The nickname "Foca"

Postby rfornal » 24 Aug 2006, 15:52

Wow ... that's quite a story.

What a unique piece of history.

User avatar
mfjp
Master
Master
Posts: 2210
Joined: 13 Aug 2004, 00:00
Contact:

Re: The nickname "Foca"

Postby mfjp » 24 Aug 2006, 17:12

How on earth did you find the manifest?? Yes... the old switch-aroo...

Always a good rule to remember... transpose the names when doing a search...

Also.. the name Foca is certainly new to me!!

Glad you have the record! Thanks for sharing the history with us.

Maria

User avatar
Eleven
Veteran
Veteran
Posts: 197
Joined: 15 Nov 2004, 00:00
Contact:

Re: The nickname "Foca"

Postby Eleven » 24 Aug 2006, 21:30

After 14 years of reading manifest indexes, and censuses..besides the fact that most info takers did poorly with phonics, I conclude that if your name had more than 4 letters..either the person taking info on the ship or census, or the non italian that was unfamiliar with the names and copied them to an index, more than likely, screwed it up.

I have never found any people in my family all coming up in the same list. Most..I had to play around with, playing the "misspelled on purpose game".

This week, I found two people. One, I didnt know existed..and well..you may as well say..I didnt know the other one existed. I knew he existed, but not his name..lol (long story).

Anyway..I found this persons ship passenger manifest, and then set out to find the census. Because the name had well over 4 letters..I knew this wasnt gonna be easy..and I was right..I could not, with any type search bring them up.

Good thing the city in upstate NY was small then. In I went..page by page. I found them.

Tell me, how does one get "Acgnaquiva" out of "Acquaviva" ? The "acqua" part of the name was clear to me in the census.

After I found them, I went back to searching to see if I could get them to come up without putting the badly misspelled name in and finally got it to come up, ..by using the wifes first name and the town. Since her name was different from the ship manifest (americanized by 1930), I couldnt do it that way before.

I still have two people I cant find a passenger record for..and I have done thousands of searches..probably doing the same ones dozens of times.

You really have to be lucky to find the records for some people. They made such a mess out of these names.

Ya know..when I search thru these passenger records, I feel that it is such a shame, they couldnt get people familiar with italian to index them. I cant tell you how many names I see listed something like "Giuseppe Figlio" or "Maria Moglie". And one look at the original list will show you..its the child or wife of the person above. I have also seen son or daughter written in place of a last name.

Its a real miracle we find who we do on these things..lol

User avatar
Eleven
Veteran
Veteran
Posts: 197
Joined: 15 Nov 2004, 00:00
Contact:

Re: The nickname "Foca"

Postby Eleven » 24 Aug 2006, 21:53

Wow, I just read your story. Its amazing more men didnt end up like this back then..but most women just accepted this type of abuse, and still do, today.

In my opinion, the woman is a hero!!!!


Return to “Italian Genealogy”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Bing [Bot], Google [Bot], Yahoo [Bot] and 10 guests