Sharon’s search for an explanation?

When Sharon started researching her ancestral line in a small town in Abruzzo she was a little shocked at the apparent comportment of her ancestors.  She remarked ‘the women in my family certainly got around!’ After studying the records she found I saw a potentially different story.  It all began with Maria Proietta who gave … Continue reading

A Foundling or a Love Child?

In researching our genealogy it’s hard to accept that our ancestor was a foundling.  A ‘throw away’, a child whose mother abandoned him.  We grasp at straws to discover that he was loved and cherished.  We don’t really want to believe he was truly alone. Wendy was sure her Grandfather was the secret love child … Continue reading

Search of the week

Eric contacted me with a ‘brick wall’. He was applying for Italian citizenship and had collected all the records he needed, and had already corrected several of them to meet the Consulate’s standards.  One record though, was a real puzzle.  His Grandfather Gioacchino was a foundling born in Palermo, although his entry record indicated he … Continue reading

Search of the week – Ceccano

Mike had always dreamed of visiting the towns of his ancestors and experience the reality of being there.  Not the regular guided tour but a real experience.  He also wanted to meet a living relative.  He got his wish and we also arranged for him to meet a living relative – or so we thought.  … Continue reading

Searching for Luisa, Part 1: Rome

I had arranged to meet Mary in Rome to help her with her goals of finding her Grandmother’s baptism record.  Sometimes, no matter how well prepared we are things just don’t work out the way we plan.  Here is Mary’s own story of our day together. July 1, 2017 / whatatrip2017 Looking for and (hopefully) … Continue reading

Abandoned in Napoli….

The research I did for Patricia in Naples ended on both male lines with not one, but TWO, foundlings. One had been fostered to a family in Procida, an island off the coast of Naples, the other to a ship’s captain in Torre del Greco. Information on foundlings in Rome before 1905 is limited to … Continue reading

A ‘thank you’ note that made my day!

The work you did, and the results you came up with were amazing! We were unable to break through the “Brick Wall”, and now we know why. I never considered that he was a Foundling. How sad, but as you explained, pretty common in those days. You also pointed us down the road of his … Continue reading

Why so many abandoned babies?

In the 1600’s and 1700’s the government and the church got together with a project to prevent infanticide. A high number of babies were being abandoned on church steps, doorsteps, even thrown in the river (like Moses). Tiny corpses were found in out of the way places. Remember that these babies were the physical evidence … Continue reading

Illegitimacy and Child Abandonment

  Illegitimacy is determined by parentage.  Just because you are illegitimate doesn’t mean you were abandoned by your ‘real’ parents.  We all know this, however when researching our Italian ancestors we need to look for the clues that will tell us if they were illegitimate or abandoned since their birth records may not include one … Continue reading