Boarders??

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Ricky1016
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Boarders??

Postby Ricky1016 » 28 Feb 2007, 22:15

I've noticed on a lot of the censuses there are always a couple people living with my gg-grandparents who came over from Italy. Is it possible that they are relatives? I'm not sure, I don't recognize any of the boarders' surnames. But I tried looking them up, going by the name they had listed and I can never find them! Has anyone else noticed that or had that problem?

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Re: Boarders??

Postby Biff83 » 28 Feb 2007, 22:52

I've also noticed the frequency of boarders on census records, particularly the 1900 to 1920 records. My experience has been checking for Italian immigrants but I've seen the same thing with Ukranian, Polish, and other records. Taking in boarders was a two way street. It brought in additional income to the family and allowed the boarders to save enough money to raise the money needed to bring their family/relatives to the states or to return with a nice nest egg.

Since immigrants from the same comune tended to initally live in the same neighborhoods, some of the boarders could be relatives or people from the same comune. My family was from San Mango d'Aquino and the vast majority who came to NE Pennsylvania settled in the Providence section of Scranton where they worked in the mines or on the railroad, and there is still a large number of Sanmanghesi descendants living in that area.

Your inability to find the boarders' ship manifests probably is likely due to spelling errors and/or poor handwriting on the census records. In my searches, I was able to locate boarders on family census records but only through a bit of effort due to the aforementioned.
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Ricky1016
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Re: Boarders??

Postby Ricky1016 » 28 Feb 2007, 23:00

Well, I'm glad I'm not the only one! haha!

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Re: Boarders??

Postby nuccia » 28 Feb 2007, 23:51

Yes, boarders were quite common, weren't they? I noticed that many boarders living with my relatives were people from the same towns as them and sometimes they were related or "compares". I have also noticed that 99% of the time the names were spelled wrong..especially in the earlier census records. I think the 1910 Census was the worst for spelling errors.
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Re: Boarders??

Postby nuccia » 28 Feb 2007, 23:53

I also want to add that I have always been curious how they got the name Jim from Vincenzo. I always thought that it would have been Vince or Vincent but James???

Strange....of course, many of my relatives were named Vincenzo so I had a heck of a time until I figured that one out!
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Re: Boarders??

Postby Ricky1016 » 01 Mar 2007, 00:27

Interestingly enough, my gg-grandparents birth-names are Pasquale and Gaetana....for some odd reason, they changed their names when they came to the U.S. to "Frank" and "Mary." If they were going by the English translations, their names should have been Patrick and Gertrude. I have no idea why they chose Frank and Mary?? haha

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Re: Boarders??

Postby nuccia » 01 Mar 2007, 00:49

Ok..you're family is as strange as mine! :lol: :lol:

And it just keeps getting better..... :D
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Re: Boarders??

Postby Biff83 » 01 Mar 2007, 03:13

My grandfather's cousin was another Vincenzo who took the name James, and I do agree that the 1910 census was the worst for surname, first name errors; a little better, not by much, in 1920, and vastly improved in the 1930 records. However, a close second is the 1900 census data.

And what I've found most frustrating are the missing manifest records lost in the Ellis Island fire. It's made locating my paternal grandmother's father's record guesswork as well as my paternal grandfather's brother.
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Re: Boarders??

Postby Ricky1016 » 01 Mar 2007, 03:26

manifest records...are those passenger records? Wow, I didn't know there was a fire...I was wondering why I couldn't find anything on certain people :(

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Re: Boarders??

Postby Biff83 » 01 Mar 2007, 03:54

Ricky1016 wrote:manifest records...are those passenger records? Wow, I didn't know there was a fire...I was wondering why I couldn't find anything on certain people :(


The fire destroyed records only for certain years. However, the customs lists were stored elsewhere and these are available online but contain limited information. For a more detailed explanation, I found the following very informative.

http://members.tripod.com/~L_Alfano/immig.htm

Ricky, you might want to see if your local library has or can obtain a copy of Mangione and Morreale's book La Storia, Five Centuries of the Italian American Experience. I think you'll find it interesting reading, particularly the section dealing with immigration from the 1880s to the 1930s. The History Channel also did a program entitled The Italian Americans based on the book which is also available on DVD, about 100 minutes or so. Although the DVD is good, there's more meat in the book. Try it, I think you'll like it.
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Re: Boarders??

Postby Poipuo4 » 01 Mar 2007, 17:26

I also have a Vincenzo turned James in my family.
http://www.celenzaheritage.com

dedicated to the people of Celenza Valfortore, Province of Foggia

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Re: Boarders??

Postby Nunsiata » 01 Mar 2007, 18:21

I have an Innocenzo turned James. I have always wondered where he got that from and where's the logic!

N

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Re: Boarders??

Postby nuccia » 01 Mar 2007, 18:58

I'm sorry but sometimes there just isn't any logic is there? My father is Damiano...they call him Danny. I guess thats not so bad. My mom is Raffaella....I would think Ella or even Lina (Raffaellina) would make sense..but its been shortened to Lea.

But mine is the best..Erminia to Amie (Nuccia is my childhood nickname). Now go and figure that out! Of course, thats just me being "different" so I wouldn't get called Emilia or worse..Irma/Erma.
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Re: Boarders??

Postby johnmilano » 01 Mar 2007, 19:10

Yes, it's quite funny the 'english nicknames' that they were given. I had a uncle Vincenzo who's nickname, too, was Jimmy. And his brother, Antonio, was given the nickname Michael... strange!

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Re: Boarders??

Postby nuccia » 01 Mar 2007, 19:19

Michael for Antonio??? Maybe that was his middle name? Thats a strange one. :?
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