Illegitimate children - socially shunned?

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Illegitimate children - socially shunned?

Postby Clicker » 14 Jan 2008, 16:03

Hi All

Just beginning to dive into my grandmother's side. Her Father was considered by most be be a pretty bad apple and he wasn't the picture of perfect fatherhood when they immigrated to Canada by any stretch of the imagination......What I have found out is that when he was born in 1888, his Mother and Father were not married and did not get married until another year later. They lived in the Marche region/Pesaro-Urbino in a very small town. I know the province/region was a papal state.....how would he and his family been treated? Would people treat him badly because he was born out of wedlock? Would people treat his parents badly? Just curious.....kinda thinking about that whole idea that if you tell a kid he's a bad apple from such a young age, that you shoulnd't be surprised when they prove you right.
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Re: Illegitimate children - socially shunned?

Postby DonnaPellegrin » 14 Jan 2008, 18:35

There is an interesting book on this subject (in English) by a historian named David Kertzer. The title is Sacrificed for Honor: Italian Infant Abandonment and the Politics of Reproductive Control. You can probably find a copy on Amazon.com fairly cheap if you are interested. The short answer to your question is probably: yes, he and his mother would have been treated badly by many people.
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Re: Illegitimate children - socially shunned?

Postby PeterTimber » 14 Jan 2008, 19:24

...and be an endles source of gossip never to die out. =Perter=
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Re: Illegitimate children - socially shunned?

Postby Italysearcher » 17 Jan 2008, 15:27

Since you know this town was part of the Papal States you need to know also that these states did not always follow the civil codes preferring to continue to follow the church rules. Since marriage was a church sacrament the couples did not always bother with the civil registration (of marriage) in these areas, often marrying civilly after fact, when they needed some form of document (usually a birth certificate) and the clerk insisted on their completing the civil registration of their already completed religious marriage. At this time any children they already had would have been listed on the marriage certificate, formally legitimizing them.
Since they married a year after his birth, this may have been the case. A search of the church records may well show that the married religiously BEFORE the birth of their child. In these towns, the family would have been treated normally, since everyone would know they were married in the church. The civil registration came from Napoleon and they really didn't care!
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Re: Illegitimate children - socially shunned?

Postby DonnaPellegrin » 17 Jan 2008, 16:25

Italysearcher, I have seen the type of situation that you describe often in the villages that I have been researching in Calabira...but I did not know that it went on as late as 1888. Have you seen this kind of situation in the Papal States as late as 1888? Eighteen years after the fall of Rome? I am curious.
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Re: Illegitimate children - socially shunned?

Postby Italysearcher » 17 Jan 2008, 20:12

I did some research in Piglio and found it there in 1893. The marriage took place after they had five children. All five children are names and legitimised.
The religious ceremony took place in Ferentino some years earlier.
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Re: Illegitimate children - socially shunned?

Postby Clicker » 17 Jan 2008, 21:49

Dear Italysearcher and DonnaPellegrin....thank you so much for the thoughtful and intersting posts....I guess I can't jump to conclusions!! and I am so glad I asked. I will go back to the records becuase I can't be certain if what I saw was a Civil registration certificate of the marriage or a church record/certificate....nonetheless, a very interesting topic....I wonder how many others have jumped to the same conclusion?
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Re: Illegitimate children - socially shunned?

Postby Italysearcher » 18 Jan 2008, 11:10

It was probably civil, as very few (if any) catholic parish records have been microfilmed.
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Re: Illegitimate children - socially shunned?

Postby JamesBianco » 18 Jan 2008, 12:29

Italysearcher wrote:It was probably civil, as very few (if any) catholic parish records have been microfilmed.


It is very sad that nearly half the existing church records for Sicily have been filmed and are available, yet virtually none for mainland Italy.

Can you imagine the day when the church records are released? couple that with the LDS Church's plans to slowly upload all of their microfilm images to the internet, I don't think I would leave my pc for a year.
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Re: Illegitimate children - socially shunned?

Postby Italysearcher » 18 Jan 2008, 15:04

Hi James,
I did a keyword search at LDS for Sicilia and came up with only 2 or 3 church record films. Am I searching under the wrong thing?
In the area I live, searching the church records varies from Church to Church. Some won't let me touch the books, insisting on doing the search while I watch. Since they don't do much Latin anymore it is painful for me to watch them struggle to read every word. Others, let me in, unlock the cupboard, and tell me to lock up when I leave. (I have a long term trusting relationship with this one). Just getting an appointment is a challenge in itself! The lighting is poor, the church is unheated (40° in summer and I have to wear a sweater!), I don't use flash to take photos (if they permit it) and of course you can't do photocopies. Handwritten copies are difficult since most of the writing is illegible or unknown to me since I don't speak Latin. I tried to attach a sample but the file is too big.
Some want letters of authorization, others will only permit personal research.
I just can't envision the day when this is all available at LDS. The Catholic Church knows that the LDS want these records so they can baptize Catholics into the Mormon Church. I don't think it will happen in our lifetime. Sorry!
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Re: Illegitimate children - socially shunned?

Postby BillieDeKid » 18 Jan 2008, 15:38

Hi Italyresearcher - this is what I came up with for church records in Sicily. Missing provinces - Agrigento, Enna, Ragusa and Siracusa. Thought you might like to take a look at these. They didn't come up in a general search on LDS for Sicily (Sicilia).

Caltanissetta 1539 through 1912
http://www.familysearch.org/eng/Library ... siastici++

Catania 1515 through 1924
http://www.familysearch.org/eng/Library ... umns=*,0,0

Messina burials 1877 through 1879 baptisms 1902 through 1908
http://www.familysearch.org/eng/Library ... 1879%3B+++

Palermo 1392 through 1919
http://www.familysearch.org/eng/Library ... umns=*,0,0

Trapani 1504 through 1910
http://www.familysearch.org/eng/Library ... siastici++
http://www.familysearch.org/eng/Library ... siastici++
http://www.familysearch.org/eng/Library ... siastici++
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Re: Illegitimate children - socially shunned?

Postby Clicker » 18 Jan 2008, 15:40

Italysearcher.....that's some good insight. Currently I have a fellow doing a search for me in the church records on my behalf ( I needed to give him a very detailed letter of authorization), and I suspected the conditions are what you described.....sad that it's true!

The civil records for my grandfather's side are not available at all at LDS....although I know that some civil records exist as my extended new family was able to find a handful......my grandmother's side though is pretty much available through LDS and I don't think I will have to use the researcher for her side.

Sadly, the churches are often the biggest source and yet the records are so out of reach....
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Re: Illegitimate children - socially shunned?

Postby JamesBianco » 18 Jan 2008, 16:09

Italysearcher wrote:Hi James,
I did a keyword search at LDS for Sicilia and came up with only 2 or 3 church record films. Am I searching under the wrong thing?
I just can't envision the day when this is all available at LDS. The Catholic Church knows that the LDS want these records so they can baptize Catholics into the Mormon Church. I don't think it will happen in our lifetime. Sorry!


There are dozens and dozens of Sicilian towns (Church Records) available, go to the Familysearch.com site, choose library catalog and plug in the name of a town. You will find the film #'s.

It has only been since 2003 that the first Sicilian church records began emerging on the LDS site (to order at your local FHC)

off the very top of my head Terrasini, Cinisi, Palermo, Catania, Carini, Capaci, Corleone, Mondello, Bisacquino and that is only because I have used these towns.

Check out the tens of thousands of church records scanned and uploaded to my website spanning 1527-1905.

http://www.cariniexchange.com/cariniexchange_005.htm

And they have already begun uploading images to the New LDS website, it is in it's infancy and rather difficult to navigate at the moment.

here is something I found:

Digitization and indexing projects

The Family History Library (FHL) is in the process of digitizing its entire microfilm collection. ScanStone, which was developed by the LDS Church, is a system (both hardware and software) to rapidly create digital images of genealogical records contained on microfilm. When fully implemented, the FHL will be able to convert 370,000 rolls of microfilm per year into digital images. It is estimated that the digitizing project will be completed about 2012.[3]
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Re: Illegitimate children - socially shunned?

Postby Clicker » 18 Jan 2008, 17:51

JamesBianco.....good information to know......I however, have been looking for records in the Marche (specifically Pesaro-Urbino) do you know if there is any push on to retrieve or record the records from the churches in that region?....
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Re: Illegitimate children - socially shunned?

Postby wldspirit » 24 Feb 2008, 06:20

I to have an interest in Pesaro-Urbino and would love to see more filming,
however when I called the Lds to see if there were any future plans to film my town of interest I was told no.....according to this woman, the churches in that area are especially difficult to get access to...... :(
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