Author: L.Roach

I'm a photographer and digital artist. My passions are reading, traveling, art, hiking and genealogy. Between excursions to explore other countries and cultures, I spend most of my time building my family genealogy blog and creating digital art.

New Photo Gallery!

Vigilio and Maria Genetti

Vigilio and Maria Genetti of Illinois, 1886

It’s finally completed! Our new Photo Gallery is finished and online! You’ll find the direct link located in the Main Menu at the top of each page of our website, fourth link from the left under the title: Photo Gallery.

During the past year, I received many family photographs from different branches of the Genetti family. Since our old Photograph page had grown extremely large and cumbersome, the only possible solution for adding new images was to reorganize everything into manageable sections and republish as a separate gallery. After much thought, I came up with the solution to divide our photos into individual pages representing each state where our ancestors settled after arriving in the USA. We now have photo pages for: Pennsylvania, Wyoming, Illinois, Michigan, Washington and of course, our ancestral home of Castelfondo.

Many more names, dates and stories have been added to each page in the Photo Gallery. I hope with the addition of these details, I have created a descriptive account of family life, trials and tribulations encountered by our ancestors in their new country.

Our thanks to John Nimmo, great-grandson of Peter Menghini, who contributed many wonderful group photos to the Wyoming Genetti page.

Another thank you to Sharon Genetti Cain, great-granddaughter of Vigilio and Maria Genetti, for the exceptional collection of vintage images that now compose our Illinois Genetti page.

And finally, a big thank you to our friends and cousins in Italy who contributed several new photographs to our Castelfondo page as well as to other sections in our Photo Gallery. Mille grazie to Dino Marchetti, Giovanni Marchetti and Lidia Genetti.

Leone Genetti

Leone Genetti, Castelfondo, 1871

You might wonder why it has taken so long to see your photo memories appear on the Genetti Family Genealogy Project. Here is a “behind-the-scenes” glimpse at the process!

Upon receiving a new grouping of photographs, I first sort through the collection to determine if they are: 1. Genetti descendants and 2. they fit with the general theme of our website.

But before I can publish any new photo, there is much prep work involved. If possible, I prefer photographs to be sent via email as hi-res digital JPGs, along with names, dates, places, etc. This allows for the greatest working latitude with the images. Plus sending along photo details lays the groundwork for a story to go along with your family portraits.

However, this is not always the case and most photographs I receive require I great deal of attention before they are ready for our family website. Often the files arriving in my inbox are low-resolution, in need of restoration and have either no information or just a minimal title to identify them. And sometimes I receive packages by mail containing actual photos or newspaper clippings. In any case, every photo needs to be “prepped” and authenticated before it can be added to our gallery.

I begin by uploading (or in the case of hard copy photos – scanning) the images into Photoshop. I then try to increase clarity by using various filters and adjusting the tone of the photo. Next comes digitally repairing rips and tears, getting rid of dust spots and generally cleaning up the the image, restoring it to as close to original appearance as possible. After that, each photo must be resized to the correct resolution for online publishing. Now I’m ready for research!

If only basic information has been sent to me, I first locate the ancestor in my offline family tree (to date, I have collected information on over 1,700 family members beginning in the mid-1400’s up to present day living descendants). If I can’t find the ancestor on our tree or there just isn’t enough information in their file, I need to start researching using a variety of online resources such as Ancestry.com, FamilySearch.org and Find-A-Grave. After authenticating the people in the photo and finding enough information to compile a short story, I need to date the photograph. Sometimes I’m lucky and a date will be written on the photo or provided by the family, but usually this is not the case. Then I must put on my detective hat and estimate the year in which the photo was taken. I do this by using the following clues: determining the age of the subjects, the era of clothing style they are wearing, type of hairstyle they have, jewelry being worn and sometimes even identifying the background. All of these elements can offer clues to an approximate date.

After identifying the photo’s subjects, place and date, I am ready to publish your family memories to our website!

So take a stroll through the history of the Genetti family, see if you recognize any of your ancestors and enjoy browsing our new Photo Gallery.

Our many, many thanks to everyone who has contributed to our website! With your help, we have grown the Genetti Family Genealogy Project into an extensive resource, not only for our family, but also for the many Tyroleans who visit our website daily.

Grazie a tutti i nostri cugini di tutto il mondo (thank you to all of our cousins throughout the world)!

 

We welcome all contributions to the Genetti Family Photo Gallery. Please send me a direct message through our Contact page for directions on how to submit photographs.

 

 

Follow-up News on Documentary Film

This is a follow-up to yesterday’s post about the documentary film: Trentini Americani – I just found out from the film maker that an interview with Bill Genetti will be included in the final cut of the project! Filmed in 2011, Bill was interviewed at his business in Hazleton, Pennsylvania along with footage of the city and other Tyroleans telling their story. I featured an edited YouTube clip of this interview on our blog back in May. Here’s the link if you would like to watch it again: Pennsylvania Trentini Americani.

Since our family will be represented in the documentary film, it’s even more reason to support this exceptional ancestral project! I can’t wait to watch the final film since Vincenzo also did interviews with descendants in Wyoming, Montana, California and Colorado – all places where the Genetti ancestors settled.

There are six levels of “Perks” being offered ranging from $11 to $2,916. (Note: five of the levels are under $95 – so I know you can find a level that fits within your budget.) If you value preserving our heritage and the memories of our first generation Trentini Americans, I know you will support this worthy project.

To learn more, go to: Trentini Americani: Recollections of a Journey

Trentini Americani: Recollections of a Journey

Hey family and friends, I just found out about a super-cool project called Trentini Americani: Recollections of a Journey, a documentary project. The film is being produced by Vincenzo Mancuso of Trento, Italy and is a crowd-funding project at Indiegogo. Here is the project’s overview:

“At the beginning of the 20th century 10,000 Trentini made their way to the United States. From 2009 until 2018 I traveled across the United States, meeting with families from New York to San Francisco and collecting over 160 interviews. The conclusion of this long oral history project is the production of a documentary that spans four generations and that tells the stories of the Trentini immigrants.”

The film will be produced in English with Italian subtitles, allowing for both Americans and our Italian cousins to enjoy personal interviews with descendants. Read more about this amazing project and view photos of our Tyrolean ancestors at the project’s home page: Click Here!

This is quite the labor of love and a magnificent way to preserve our ancestral heritage. If you agree, why not join me in supporting Vincenzo’s campaign with a donation. By donating at the $28 level, you will receive a high-definition download of the film upon its completion. I think that’s a real bargain for all the work that is going into this documentary. Of course, every little bit helps in bringing this project to fruition. FYI – the Indiegogo campaign runs until the end of August, so don’t procrastinate – help share our heritage with the world by supporting Vincenzo’s dream.

And here is the video clip that introduces the project on Indiegogo:

Trentini Americani – Recollections of a Journey from ITALOAMERICANI on Vimeo.

For more information:

https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/trentini-americani-recollections-of-a-journey/x/1698596#/

New in Bookstore!

I love books! In my office I have a small personal library dedicated to Tyrolean culture and history. Our online Family Bookstore is one way that I share my genealogy research and love of books with you.

This past week I did a complete update of the Bookstore. Now you can access it from the main menu found at the top of the website. All dead links and books that are no longer available have been removed. Plus I have added many new categories, filled with interesting book titles, most of which I have personally read.

 

There’s something for everyone under our new category listings:

  • Tyrolean Culture and History
  • Travel
  • Trentini American Non-Fiction
  • Family Legacy
  • Cookbooks
  • Trentini American Fiction
  • Tyrolean Communities in USA
  • DNA Testing and Genetic Genealogy
  • Genealogy Research
  • Genealogy Fiction (Love this new genre of literature!)

Come by for a visit at the Genetti Family Bookstore and browse our virtual bookshelves!

 

Link Resource List

Our Links section has just been updated! For all you genealogy buffs, or those just fascinated with Tyrolean history and culture, you’ll find this list to be a valuable resource. To locate just scroll down any page on our website and you’ll see the “Links” list in the right hand column, right below “Archives”.

All links have been checked and updated, plus several informative websites added. Here are two that I know you’ll enjoy –

Val di Non to USA:
Discovering our ancestors who left Val di Non for a job or better life in America.
Researched and published by Elaine Erspamer Marchant, this website is truly a work of love! Elaine’s family is from Fondo (just down the road from Castelfondo) and she has made it a mission to categorize as many immigrants as possible who came from Val di Non. This is a fantastic resource for family surnames!

 

Trentino Family History Links:
Resources specific to Trentino Family History Research
According to genealogist Lynn Serafinn, “this is a new list of resource links specific to the province of Trento (aka Trentino)”. You might know Lynn from her popular column in Filo Magazine called Genealogy Corner. Living in England, Lynn specializes in genealogy research for Trentini descendants, with the majority of her clients being Americans. A frequent researcher at the archives located in the city of Trent, Lynn is certainly the person to hire if you want deep and thorough research into your Tyrolean family tree. In this new section just added to her extensive website, Lynn shares many research tools for Trentini ancestry. She also includes The Genetti Family Genealogy Project under the Family History Blog section of her list! Plus one more interesting point – Lynn has a Genetti ancestor from Castelfondo in her family tree! That’s right, Lynn is a distant cousin to our family! Our common ancestor predates baptismal records, but we believe our closest shared ancestor lived sometime around 1500. Thanks again Lynn for creating such a valuable resource and for including our family website! Make sure you check out the entire Trentino Genealogy website as it is filled with informative articles, personal stories and photographs.

Honoring Those Who Served

August Henry Genetti (1892-1976)

August Henry Genetti (1892-1976)
Served 1917-1919

To celebrate Memorial Day this year I have compiled a list of Genetti descendants who served the United States in World War I, World War II and the Korean War. My goal is to create a special page on our website dedicated to our military family. Unfortunately, I am not able to access records for military personnel serving after the Korean War. So those serving later than the mid-1950’s are not on this list.

Also, the following compilation only includes descendants with the surname of Genetti. I would like to include all of our military descendants who have served our country from 1880 to present and can trace their roots directly to a Genetti ancestor.

If you or a loved one is a Genetti descendant, served in any branch of the military and would like to be listed on our permanent page, please write me through our Contact Page.

In researching this post, I also located a moving tribute to Frank George Genetti (1913-2010) who served in the Navy from 1942 to 1945. Descendant from the Illinois branch of the Genetti family, Frank and his three brothers all served our country during World War II. Frank’s youngest brother, Bernard, is alive and well – thank you so much for your honorable service! We salute you Bernard Genetti on this day of remembrance.

Frank George Genetti (1913-2010)

Frank George Genetti (1913-2010)
Served 1942-1945

To read about Frank George Genetti, click (GenettiFrank – 1916-2010) to open the PDF document. (Created by Vicki DeWitt, Area 51 Learning Technology Center, Edwardsville, IL. Memories, photos and images provided by Frank Genetti and his family of Gillespie, IL)

 

Descendants Serving in the United States Military – WW I, WW II, Korean War

World War I

August Henry Genetti (19 Jun 1892 – 22 Nov 1976) Enlisted 5 Jun 1917, Released 17 Feb 1919

John B. Genetti (30 Mar 1890 – 4 Jul 1972) Enlisted 28 Feb 1918, Released 7 Aug 1919

 

World War II

Albert  Joseph Genetti (5 Aug 1915 – 17 Nov 1980) Enlisted 5 Jul 1938, Released 10 Oct 1969

Bernard Genetti (1926 – living) Enlisted 29 Jan 1944

Charles A. Genetti (15 Aug 1922 – 9 Jun 2007) Enlisted 26 May 1944, Released 5 Apr 1946

Edward Genetti (10 Nov 1913 – 29 Sep 1999) Enlisted 31 Aug 1943, Released 6 Feb 1946

Emil Joseph Genetti (24 May 1914 – 30 March 1977) Enlisted 23 July 1941, Released 2 Nov 1961

Frank George Genetti (19 Apr 1913 – 3 Nov 2010) Enlisted 16 July 1942, Released 2 Nov 1945

Frank L. Genetti (16 Oct 1916 – 7 Jan 2008) Enlisted 19 June 1942, Released 16 June 1945

Frank V. Genetti (20 Dec 1918 – 19 March 1994) Enlisted 1 July 1941, Released 31 Dec 1963

Henry Genetti (12 June 1922 – 16 Jun 1989) Enlisted 29 Nov 1942, Released 16 Nov 1945

John Damian Genetti (1 Nov 1919 – 21 July 1981) Enlisted 26 Oct 1942, Released 31 March 1947

John M. Genetti (20 Apr 1920 – 10 Apr 1986) Enlisted 17 Oct 1941, Released 2 May 1945

Leonard J. Genetti (8 Mar 1924 – 4 Oct 1973) Enlisted 15 Dec 1942, Released 23 Feb 1946

Nicholas Genetti (5 Dec 1914 – 6 Jun 1985) Enlisted 7 Jun 1941, Released 25 Nov 1945

Regina L. Genetti (3 Jan 1927 – 28 Jan 1996) Service Date 25 Sep 1944 to 3 March 1947 – Cadet Nurses

Richard S. Genetti (10 Oct 1919 – 11 Sep 2009) Enlisted 3 Apr 1941, Released 24 Jun 1944

Rinaldo W. Genetti (16 Oct 1911 – 17 Jan 1962) Enlisted 17 Mar 1942

Robert Herman Genetti  (18 Nov 1916 – 24 June 2011) 1943-1948

Rudolph J. Genetti (12 Jan 1910 – 30 Jun 1994) Enlisted 22 Sep 1942, Released 6 Nov 1945

Vernon C. Genetti (5 Apr 1918 – 15 May 1999) Enlisted 29 Dec 1942, Released 19 Nov 1945

 

Korean War

Albert Genetti (5 Aug 1915 – 17 Nov 1980) Career Army

Emil Joseph Genetti (24 May 1914 – 30 March 1977) Career Army

Joseph Genetti (23 Mar 1931 – 17 May 1986) Enlisted 8 Oct 1952, Released 7 Oct 1954

Richard Genetti (3 Nov 1933 – 3 April 1983) Enlisted 28 Sep 1951, Released 27 Sep 1955

 

Special Recognition

US Army Major General Albert J. Genetti

US Army Major General Albert J. Genetti (retired)
Photo: US National Archives

Albert J. Genetti (living) – U.S. Army Major General  (retired)

A Few Stats About the Genetti Family

Damiano Genetti Meat Wagon, Hazleton, PA – about 1915

Since I’m an avid genealogist, I am also a big fan of Ancestry.com. Having been a member of the research website for the past ten years, I often come across interesting bits of information, rare photos and valuable documents pertaining to our ancestors.

Today I found a fun link on Ancestry that instantly compiled facts about the Genetti Family as documented by the Ancestry data base. I just entered our surname and here’s what I found.

Meaning of Genetti: Italian – patronymic or plural form of Genetto, a reduced pet form of the personal name Eugenio, from Latin Eugenius. (Source: Dictionary of American Family Names)

Marriage License for Leon Genetti and Angeline Marchetti, 1914

There are over 4,000 historical documents on Ancestry containing the name Genetti:

  • 1K Birth, Marriage and Death
  • 259 Military Records
  • 350 Immigration Records
  • 1K Census and Voter Lists
  • 1K Member Trees

According to Ancestry.com, the Genetti family name was found in the USA, and the UK between 1891 and 1920. The most Genetti families were found in the USA in 1920. In 1920 there were 14 Genetti families living in Pennsylvania. This was about 19% of all the recorded Genetti’s in the USA. Pennsylvania had the highst population of Genetti families in 1920. The next largest concentrations are in: Illinois, Michigan, Wyoming, Nebraska and California (according to Federal Census Data).

Webmaster’s Note: the Genetti families listed in the federal census living in New York, Massachusetts and New Jersey at this time were not connect to our family. They originated in central Italy with the surname of Giannetti. Sometime after they immigrated, the family changed their name to Genetti. The New England Genetti family is not related to the Castelfondo Genetti family.

Between 1963 and 2004, in the United States, Genetti life expectancy was at its lowest point in 1973, and highest in 1979. The average life expectancy for Genetti in 1963 was 83, and 85 in 2004 (according to the Social Security Death Index). FYI – this is very good news! It appears that Genetti family members tend to live longer than the average population, considering that in 2004 the average life expectancy of the general public was 74. So far our oldest living known ancestor was Angela Maria “Ann” Genetti McNelis (1903-2005), youngest daughter of Damiano and Oliva Genetti. She lived to be 102 years old!

Fascinating information at a glance! Want to try it out for yourself? You can find the Ancestry link here:

https://www.ancestry.com/learn/facts

 

Trento to Innsbruck via Bolzano

Today’s guest blog post comes from one of our readers, John Fellin. Since many of us make pilgrimages back to our ancestral roots in the Trentino-Alto Adige, John’s post will be of particular interest to our travelers. My husband and I often travel by train while visiting Northern Italy and I found this to be very helpful information. Mille grazie John!

 

John:

Below is a translation from the regional newspaper Il Dolomiti about a new train service uniting three great Tirolean cities. The service restores a previous service that was severed when Italy annexed the South Tirol. It means that if you’re visiting the Val di Non, you can take “al tram” (the light rail line) to Mezzacorona and transfer to this new service to go to Innsbruck. “ÖBB train” stands for the Austrian Federal Railways (German: Österreichische Bundesbahnen or ÖBB).

 

Il Dolomiti (English Translation):

For the first time a direct, round-trip train will be established between Trento/Trient, Bolzano/Bozen and Innsbruck. In addition to this there will also be an Italo return train from Bolzano/Bozen to Rome.

This is the news from December 9th that will come into force with the new timetables for trains and buses in Trentino – Alto Adige/SudTirol.

There will be an ÖBB train which will depart in the morning and in the evening, will connect Trento/Trient, Bolzano/Bozen and Innsbruck in both directions. In the morning it will start from Trento/Trient at 6:40 am and with intermediate stops in Mezzocorona/Kronmetz (6.52 hours), Egna/Neumarkt (7:05 am) and Ora/Auer (7:10 am), arriving in Bolzano/Bozen at 7:28 am, arriving in Innsbruck at 9:02 am. Departure in the evening from Innsbruck is at 9:00 pm, arrival in Trento/Trient at 11:59 pm.

There will be a new connection between Bolzano/Bozen and Trento/Trient, departing from Bolzano/Bozen on weekdays except Saturday at 20:06.

You can read Il Dolomiti at: https://www.ildolomiti.it/ 

 

About John Fellin:

John is a second generation, 100% Tyrolean American, with all of his grandparents hailing from the Val di Non. He speaks both Italian and Nones, and has remained in-touch with his Trentini cousins. His father’s family is from Revo and his mother’s side is from Vigo Ton (Vich per Nones).

The Traveling Genealogist: Part 2 – Salzburg, Austria

View of Salzburg from the Salzach river. Originally built in 1077, the medieval Hohensalzburg Fortress can be seen on the hill towering above the city.

Leaving Berlin on October 6th, we hopped a plane to Salzburg, Austria, the next stop on our 2018 trip. Michael had reserved four days in this charming little city located on the banks of the Salzach river. Although I have no genealogical ties to Salzburg (that I know of), it felt like a step back in time to my original Tyrolean heritage. As you may remember from previous posts, Trentino was part of the Austrian Tyrol for many centuries and the culture of Austria certainly influenced our ancestors in many ways.

So quaint and picturesque, I fell in love with Salzburg the very minute we stepped onto its cobblestone streets. Shop windows displayed traditional Tyrolean woolen jackets, leather lederhosen and dirndl dresses. Rows of cuckoo clocks patiently ticked away in another store window. At a third shop intricate beer steins and green felt Tyrolean hats beckoned. Restaurants were decorated in knotty pine paneling with carved wooden chairs selling mugs of beer, plates of sausages, and scrumptious apple streusel. 

On our first afternoon we asked for a recommendation to a traditional beer garden. After a bit of walking, we found ourselves at a lovely garden located away from the usual tourist area. My husband ordered a frosty mug of beer and I imbibed in a local Riesling. A few tables away a small wedding party celebrated their afternoon nuptials. Dressed in stunning Tyrolean couture, they laughed and toasted each other. The men wore smartly tailored jackets with knee-length leather pants; the women were in beautiful pastel and white dirndle dresses carrying small nosegays with their hair coiffed in braids and pinned to frame their faces. A memorable afternoon indeed!

Stately Mirabell Gardens

If you are a fan of “The Sound of Music” you’ll remember the original story of Maria and the Von Trapp family took place in Salzburg. Although the movie is somewhat fictionalized, it does embody the spirit of the real-life Maria. Filmed in and around Salzburg, it was great fun searching out the original sites pictured in the movie. We climbed the steep stairs to reach the Abbey of Nonnberg (the oldest continuously existing nunnery in the world dating back to the year 715). The original Maria was a novice at Nonnberg and she was married in the abbey church. It is a rather simple, dark church, nothing like the grand cathedral pictured in the movie. We also walked through the beautiful Mirabell Gardens pictured in “Do Re Mi” and photographed the Pegasus Fountain from the same musical number where the children danced along the edge. Tourists who visit Salzburg often book a “Sound of Music Tour” that buses you around to each location in the film. But we found it much more fun exploring on foot and discovering the sites for ourselves.

The church at Nonnberg Abbey where the real-life Maria was married.

When we arrived home in November I had to watch the movie again. The film is now 52 years old, but Salzburg hasn’t changed much and I could easily point out many sites we had visited.

Michael and I spent many happy hours trekking over the hills surrounding the city (remember – The Hills Are Alive with the Sound of Music!), photographing sites of interest, strolling the river promenade and enjoying a city of heritage and culture, the birthplace of Mozart. What a wonderful way to spend four days in Austria!

Next stop: Bolzano, Italy!

(Note: click on photos to see a larger view.)

 

When was the last time you saw The Sound of Music? I recommend purchasing or renting the 50th Anniversary Edition. The entire extra hour at the end is an interview with Julie Andrews! She visits Salzburg to celebrate the 50th anniversary, sharing memories and photos from the original filming. I absolutely loved it!

Here’s the Amazon link: The Sound of Music 50th Anniversary Edition

 

If you missed the first part of The Traveling Genealogist series, read:
Part 1 – London, Berlin and a Cousin Coincidence!