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Old 09-04-2013, 10:39 PM
 
Location: Goodness Knows...
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Anyone have any suggestions or success in tracing their Italian roots in America ?

If it were nt for recent census info from the 40 s off of a popular geneology site I would have absolutely nothing !

Please advise or commiserate !

CC
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Old 09-04-2013, 11:19 PM
 
Location: Georgia, USA
23,443 posts, read 28,306,241 times
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I'm not sure exactly what your question is.

If you found the 1940 census, what you need to do is backtrack. Look for the same people in 1930, 1920, and so on. look for information on the person's place of birth and his parents' places of birth. Some censuses will tell you when someone immigrated and if they were an "alien" or became a citizen by naturalization.

If you used Ancestry.com, it has a free two week trial to get you started, and many libraries have free access. Ancestry.com will also often provide links to the same names in other records. Those are only suggestions, though, and are not always the same person.
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Old 09-05-2013, 12:18 AM
 
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What are your road blocks? Is there something specific that is a real challenge? I am sure you know, many Italians changed their names to be more American. That makes it hard to find them! So you have to get creative! If they were Catholic and you know where they lived, you might have luck with church records. I have had to pay several churches to look up different records. It helped some, but not too much. If they were VFW members or in the service, there are records you can buy to help find more info. Think about service clubs, etc. Some have tons of records.
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Old 09-05-2013, 04:55 AM
 
Location: Colorado (PA at heart)
8,927 posts, read 13,680,252 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CHATTY CATHY View Post
Anyone have any suggestions or success in tracing their Italian roots in America ?

If it were nt for recent census info from the 40 s off of a popular geneology site I would have absolutely nothing !

Please advise or commiserate !

CC
Which popular genealogy site was it? Have you used www.FamilySearch.org yet? This is the best free database of records out there.

As suggested, if you have only searched the 1940 census, your next step is to search earlier censuses. The reminder about names is a good one and I find Behind the Name: Meaning of Names, Baby Name Meanings to be useful when determining foreign variants of English first names. For example John = Giovanni, Joseph = Giuseppe. And for last names: Behind the Name: the Etymology and History of Surnames - for example, this tells me that my Italian family name Demore was originally D'Amore. Ancestry.com also have a surname meaning look up that often provides more details, I don't think you have to be a subscriber to use it: Last Name Meanings and Origins | Search Surnames at Ancestry.com

You should also look for death certificates from the state or city they died in. For example, if they died in Philly/PA: Public Records or NYC: Department of Records - Municipal Archives - Genealogy

Once you find their death certificate, it should tell you where they were buried - if it was a church cemetery, you now know where they worshiped and might find more information from the church records (though they might not be held at the church anymore, you should be able to find out where to access them).

If they married in the US, you can usually find those records from the county clerk.
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