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Neurodiversity Awareness/Appreciation

Neurodiversity Awareness/Appreciation

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

This Is My Cheat Day

I still want to keep blogging every day for NaBloPoMo... but today I got really wrapped up in one of my new obsession projects, genealogy. I've been working on my Nona's side of the family, which is much more difficult than any of my Dad's branches were! My Nona's side is from Italy, and did not start trickling into the USA until between 1910 and 1930. Furthermore, while the people on my dad's side of the family were always proud of their ancestry and were always talking, telling stories, and passing down packets of information, my Nona's side is almost secretive. We only found out today that my great-grandmother on my Nona's side was not born in Italy, as we'd always assumed, but in Brazil! And then they moved to Italy. But were they from Italy originally? Or are we Brazilian? Nobody has a clue! In fact, my Nona isn't even completely sure of the names of her siblings, because they all had Italian names at birth, that were eventually Americanized, plus somehow their middle names got mixed up so that my Nona's middle name was on her sister's birth certificate for some reason, and some of their Americanized names were misspelled, and my great-grandmother's name was spelled about four different ways depending on who was writing it... so, yeah. It is not so cut and dry. Which is why I got totally absorbed in it.

I actually managed to find out a whole bunch of information today. I learned the name of my great-great grandmother and great-great grandfather on that side, the names of my great-great uncles and aunts, the name of the town in Brazil where they were born and the town in Italy where they later lived, the dates that they arrived in the United States, and my great-great grandmother's maiden name.

The mystery, however, continues. By 1930, most of my immediate Italian (or Brazilian?) relatives... my great-great grandmother, great grandmother, and three great-great uncles and one great-great aunt, were all living in the Chicago area. My great-grandmother had been the first to come over, followed by one of her brothers, and finally by the rest of her family, except for her father, who had died by then. So there they all were. But then, in 1931, one of the uncles died at the age of 21. How did he die? I have no clue! I can't find any obituaries about him, just his death record. And after that, the rest of them seemed to just disappear and there are no more records of them. I mean, I know they didn't drop off the face of the Earth. But they are a very tough crowd to find information on!

Plus, when I try to search even further beyond my great-great grandparents, all the information is in Italian, which makes it much harder to do.

So... yeah. So this is my blog post for today. And as you can see, it did turn into a pretty substantial post. So I guess I didn't cheat after all!

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