Michelle Ann Kratts

Have You Wondered About Your Italian Ancestors?

In Uncategorized on November 5, 2012 at 4:39 pm

Fortuna-Ventresca Wedding
December 12, 1923
Niagara Falls, New York

By the late 19th century, Italian immigrants (predominantly from southern Italy) began to stream into the Niagara area.  They worked on the railroads, in the factories and helped to dig the Hydraulic Canal.  However, the greatest numbers of immigrants came in the early 20th century following the First World War.   Most residents of Niagara Falls, New York, (23.2%) claim Italian ancestry more than any other ethnic group.

If you are interested in digging deeper and finding more about your Italian ancestors, Angelo Coniglio, a WNY genealogist and author, will present a two-part lecture entitled Finding Your Sicilian/Italian Immigrant Ancestors, from 6 PM to 7 PM and 7:15 to 8:15 PM on Thursday, November 8 at the Lewiston Public Library, 305 South Eighth Street, Lewiston, New York.  There is no charge and no registration necessary.

The first part of the lecture will discuss use of public records to determine the ancestral towns of immigrants, and the uncovering and interpretation of birth, marriage and death records from those towns. While the emphasis is on Sicilian and Italian immigrants, the techniques discussed are applicable for immigrants from most European countries.

The second part of the lecture will include a discussion of records for foundlings, or abandoned children, which served as the inspiration for Coniglio’s historical novella The Lady of the Wheel (La Ruotaia). Questions will be taken from the audience during the lecture, and afterwards signed copies of the book will be available for purchase.

For more information email Michelle Kratts at lewgen@nioga.org.

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