Category: Family News

Come to the Reunion! Represent your Branch of the Tree!


Genetti Reunion 1992 – Hazleton, PA

Gosh – I’m getting so excited about the Genetti Family Reunion 2016! I’ve heard from many cousins who are planning to attend. How about you?

We hope every branch of our family tree will be represented at this reunion. Are you a leaf from the Wyoming limb or a twig from the Illinois bough? Do you hail from Michigan, Texas, California or Utah? Maybe you are a descendant of the Pennsylvania Genetti family. And ciao to our Italian cousins – we would love to have you as an honored guest, representing our ancestral home of Castelfondo.

Time is slipping by! Start making plans for your hotel and travel arrangements today! If you are one of the lucky family members who live in or around the Hazleton area – you have no excuse! You are only a short drive away. Come meet, visit and hug your cousins – cousins that represent every branch of our amazing family tree!

Remember – the dates are October 7th – 9th, held at the Genetti Ballrooms, 1345 N. Church St., Hazle Township, Pennsylvania.

Check out new updates to our Reunion Page, click here!
(We’ve added a description for the DNA Workshop to be held on Saturday afternoon and a page listing door/raffle prizes and a special auction to be held!)

Download your Reunion Reservation form, click here!

Our Journey to America

1994ReunionBill Genetti has graciously invited me to give the Saturday evening presentation at our Reunion banquet dinner on October 8th. As most of you know who read this blog, I am passionately absorbed in the research and presentation of our family genealogy. Usually my only means of sharing historical tidbits and ancestral tales is through this website and ongoing email conversations with those who are just as driven as I in the pursuit of family names, dates and connections. Yes, there are a number of family genealogists among us with whom I share the same ardent intensity for digging into Genetti history. In our quest to reconstruct the past, we swap photos and stories, check each others dates and refer new genealogy resources through our information pipeline. Linked together by email, we are an electronic tribe of genealogists! (You know who you are and I thank you for your ever-present help and support!)

Now back to the reunion – for our Saturday evening presentation, I’ve chosen the theme: The Genetti Family of Castelfondo: Our Journey to America.

Curious? Here’s a description of my presentation …

Beginning in the 1870’s, our Genetti ancestors made the long, arduous journey from the Alpine mountains of Tyrol to the shores of America. Why did they leave their village of Castelfondo? Where did they establish roots in the United States? How did they seek their fortunes in a strange land? Find the answers to these questions, and much more as we explore the individual branches of the Genetti family in America.

Our presentation will focus on the first family ancestors to arrive in the United States. Learn when they immigrated and where they settled (Pennsylvania, Wyoming, Illinois, Michigan, etc.). Plus we’ll share: stories newly discovered through joint family research; how different branches of the Genetti family are related; and where their descendants are today.

We’ll take a closer look at three siblings: Damiano Genetti, Rafaele Genetti and Angeline Maddalena Genetti Recla.  Recent investigation of public documents, along with personal research by several family members, has revealed much about their intertwined lives. The siblings were a great support to each other, working to establish thriving family businesses in Pennsylvania.

Come listen to the fascinating stories of the Genetti family from Castelfondo. Your participation and input is welcomed!

See you in October!

For updated Reunion Info, check out our page –
Reunion 2016: A Gathering of Genetti Descendants

To print a Reunion reservation form, just click here!


Calling all Cousins!

Genetti Sisters

The five daughters of Damiano and Oliva Genetti: Ottilia (Tillie), Esther, Angela (Ann), Addolorata (Dora), Erminia (Erma). Photographed abut 1909 in Pennsylvania.

It’s only four months away! The Genetti Family Reunion 2016 is scheduled for the weekend of October 7 – 9 in Hazleton, Pennsylvania. Have you mailed your reservations yet? Here’s the link to download your reservation form: 2016 Genetti Reunion Reservation Form Update. There has been one small change to the original Reservation Form that we posted earlier. So make sure you download the updated version, posted on June 8th. Remember, reservation deadline is September 1, 2016!

We have received press from TrentinoHeritage – an informative blog about families from the province of Trentino in Northern Italy (used to be Tyrol). They cover culture, genealogy and history in Trentino. Click here to read the blog post about our reunion. And while you’re at it, why not subscribe to TrentinoHeritage – just scroll down the right side of their blog until you see the subscription box.

Notices have been posted on several genealogy sites (, Italian Genealogy) announcing the reunion. Plus a link was posted to “Chei da Chastelfon”, a Facebook group managed by Giovanni Marchetti of Castelfondo. Giovanni, along with other members of the group, upload vintage photos and family stories, picturing the by-gone days of their beloved village. Through Giovanni, our Italian cousins and most of Castelfondo now know about our Genetti Family Reunion!

Here’s an idea on how to include cousins from both sides of the pond – how about setting up a webcam during our reunion? This would offer cousins in Castelfondo and those unable to attend, a live online view of the weekend’s festivities and programs. What a wonderful way to make the world just a little bit smaller and include all Genetti cousins! Do we have any computer geeks out there willing to take on the challenge?

Another option might be to film several videos of the weekend. We could include video interviews with attendees, casual shots of cousins chatting, plus capture both Saturday afternoon and evening programs. The clips could then be uploaded to our Genetti YouTube channel and posted on our website for future viewing by all cousins in the USA and Italy. I’m sure these videos would become a treasured part of our family archive, especially for future generations. Do we have any volunteers who are video aficionados? Please email me through our Contact Page if you can help us with this exceptionally important task!

Important Mailing List Info! Please Read!

email iconIf you are a Genetti descendant and want to be included on the Genetti Email List, please make sure you contact me at: Send me your name, ancestry connection and email address.

The Genetti Email List helps us keep in touch with family members on a personal basis. We send email notifications for upcoming reunions and important announcements such as a death in the family.

If you are already on our email list, please make sure you add our address to your email server’s Contact List. Our last email was bounced back by many of your servers. By adding us as a “safe” contact, it will guarantee that you receive group messages and they won’t end up in your spam or trash file!

Please add the following to your Contact List: Genetti Family –

Thank you for your cooperation!

New Archive Webpage

Three Genetti Sisters

Erma Genetti Branz (1896-1971), Tillie Genetti Zambotti (1890-1971) and Dora Genetti Bott
(1889-1971). Black Creek, Pennsylvania, 1920’s.

In case you haven’t visited our family website lately, we have introduced a new webpage entitled: The Genetti Family Archive: Tell Us Your Story. You can find the link for this page in the top menu, labeled: Genetti Archive.

This is an interactive page created just for YOU! We want to know about your family, your stories, your ancestors. The Genetti family stretches back to the mid-1400’s, documenting 18 generations! That means we have a whole lot of descendants – and a bunch of living cousins! It’s hard to keep up with every person on our extensive tree. But with your help, we can create a family archive that will live on for future generations.

At the Genetti Archive page you’ll find two fun and easy questionnaires.

The Personal History of a Genetti Descendant can be completed for any descendant alive or deceased. It offers a personal glimpse of an individual’s history. Tell us about yourself, one of your adult children or use the form as a memorial to a family member who has passed on. Submit as many Personal History forms as you like – one form per person.

The Genetti Descendant Survey is for living Genetti descendants only. This questionnaire provides current information about your family lineage and will help us update our family tree.

Stop by the Genetti Archive page and take a few moments to complete our surveys. Your participation will be a great help to those of us keeping our family records – and your info will provide an invaluable resource for future generations.

Click here to go to The Genetti Family Archive: Tell Us Your Story

Also – remember the Genetti Family Reunion 2016 is just four months away! Need info about the reunion? Click here for Reunion News and to download a Reunion Reservation Form.

Genetti Family Reunion 2016

Genetti Reunion

Group from Reunion 1992. Seated: Rick Eshelman, Art Young, Stephen Farkus. Standing: Sandra Farkus Eshelman, Elaine Young, Rita Genetti Young, Paul B. Genetti, Catherine Genetti Farkus, Ann McNelis, Barbara Genetti.
Photo courtesy of Sandra Farkus Eshelman.

Yes, the info for Reunion 2016 is finally up on our website! I have created an entire page just for our Genetti Family Reunion to be held October 7-9 in Hazleton, Pennsylvania. Our thanks to Bill Genetti for all of his hard work in scheduling this event!

On this page you’ll find a weekend itinerary for our gathering of Genetti descendants, a reunion reservation form and info on special room rates for area hotels.

Plus we have a unique way for everyone to participate in Reunion 2016. Whether you plan to attend or can’t make the trip, you can still be a part of the festivities by completing our online descendant questionnaires. Created by Bill Genetti, the two forms are a fun way to share family history and add to our growing Genetti archive. They can be completed by any Genetti descendant here in the United State or elsewhere – as long as your family roots originated in Castelfondo, Italy (Tyrol).

Make sure to check the Reunion News page for future updates to programs, etc. You can find “Renuion News!” at the top of every page on our website through a link in the primary menu. I’ve also added a link to this page in our website’s right hand column along with a nifty calendar countdown to reunion weekend.

Click here for the direct link to Reunion 2016: A Gathering of Genetti Descendants.

I look forward to receiving your Descendant History Questionnaires.

Let me know if you have any questions and I hope to see all of my cousins in October!

See You in October!

Reunion-3smallIt’s family reunion time! Have you saved the dates? Make sure you mark your calendar for the 2016 Genetti Family Reunion: October 7th, 8th and 9th to take place in Hazleton, Pennsylvania. Bill Genetti has once again generously volunteered to manage all of the details for our fun-filled weekend of family hobnobbing, feasting and sharing.

We will soon post a new page on our website just for Reunion 2016 to keep you up-to-date with the itinerary, lecture info, times, places and costs. An email will also be sent to all family members on our mailing list with registration information for the Reunion weekend. Not sure if you’re on the list? Go to our Contact Page and send me a message with your name and email address in the Comment section.


Raffaele and Lucia Genetti with family, 1916

Since our website launched two years ago, cousins have contacted me from all branches of our extensive family. And of course, I’m always thrilled to meet a new cousin! How exciting it would be to have members from every part of the Genetti Family attending the reunion in Hazleton! So if your clan hails from Wyoming, Illinois, Michigan, California, Texas, Utah or Italy – we look forward to meeting you in Pennsylvania! All Genetti descendants are welcome!

Not to spill the beans … but we’re working on two super-exciting activities: a workshop about DNA genealogy and a lecture on the first Genetti ancestors to settled in America (this includes all branches of the family!). Stay tune for more details as they become available.

I hope to see you in October!


Genetti Family Reunion!

Damiano Genetti and four sons

Damiano Genett and his four sons

Mark your calendars and save the date!

I just received confirmation from Bill Genetti – we will be having a Genetti Family Reunion this year! The weekend is October 7-9, to be held at the Genetti Ballrooms in Hazleton, PA. All Genetti descendants are welcome!

Festivities will include a Friday night pizza party, Saturday afternoon program, Saturday evening cocktail hour/dinner with a guest speaker, and Sunday farewell gathering. Watch this website for details and booking information as it is made available.

Raffaele Genetti and Family 1916

Raffaele and Lucia Genetti with family, 1916

We are hoping for a large turnout of cousins from all branches of the family. Whether your name is Genetti, Lingousky, Recla, Bott, Reich or Zambotti – from the United States or Italy – you are invited as long as you are a Genetti descendant. And please feel free to share this post with other cousins.

Come to Pennsylvania in October! Meet new cousins, share stories and learn about your family ancestry!

The Glass Studio of Gary Genetti

GaryGenettiIf you live near the New York City area or eastern Pennsylvania, make sure you stop by the Glass Studio of Gary Genetti during the weekend of November 27-29. Every year Gary opens the doors of his studio to the public, offering a glimpse of his exquisite glass art. The event takes place in the rural town of Warwick, New York – just north of NYC. For address and phone number, see the flyer shown here or check Gary’s website.




BlueMedallionThis year Gary will be featuring his new kiln formed work: Fused Murrine Mosaics and Carved/Color Inlayed Panels. I’ve only seen these online, but I bet they are spectacular in-person!

A nationally recognized glass artist, Gary’s beautiful pieces have been exhibited in many galleries and prestigious craft venues, as well as featured in the permanent collection of the National Museum of American Art in Washington, DC.






Stop by and browse Gary Genetti’s website. If a piece catches your eye and you would like it for your collection or as a special gift, contact him directly at:

The Passing of a Family Member

CatherineBranzLaPorteSadly, we bring you the news that a family member is no longer with us. Catherine O. Branz LaPorte, passed away on Monday, October 26th. Catherine was the daughter of Henry and Erminia (Erma) Branz, and the granddaughter of Damiano and Oliva Genetti. We have posted Catherine’s obituary on our Tributes Page. You can also find photos of Catherine, contributed by her sister Jean Daly, on our Photograph Page.

Her obituary from Hazleton’s (PA) Standard Speaker is as follows:

Catherine O. LaPorte, 92, of Freeland passed away Monday, October 26th 2015, at Butler Valley Manor, Drums, Pennsylvania.

Born in Freeland, she was the daughter of the late Henry and Erma (Genetti) Branz.

She had previously been employed in sales by Casters Floral Shop, White Haven.

Catherine was a former member of St. Anthony’s Roman Catholic Church, Freeland, and for many years had served as their choir director.

Currently she was a member of the Immaculate Conception Parish at St. Ann’s Church, Freeland.

In the 1950s and 1960s she was a Girl Scout leader. Forever active, she was the past president of the Hazleton Women’s Club and the Hazleton Women’s Business Club.

Surviving are her husband of 69 years, Joseph LaPorte, at home; a son, Joseph LaPorte and wife, Mary, Macungie; a daughter, Judith Tomari and husband, Joseph, Freeland; a sister, Regina Daly, Waterbury, Conn.; grandchildren, Gioia Tomari Castiglione and husband, Charles, Freeland; Lea Tomari Iorio and husband, Joseph, Bethlehem; Anthony LaPorte and wife, Jamie, Slatedale; Andrew LaPorte, Cincinnati, Ohio; and Michael Reese, Macungie. Also surviving are great-grandchildren, Abrielle Castiglione, Lissandra Castiglione and Domenic Iorio.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Saturday at 10 a.m. in the Immaculate Conception Parish at St. Ann’s Church, Freeland, followed by burial in Calvary Cemetery, Drums.

Family and friends may call at the church on Saturday from 9 to 10 a.m.

McHugh-Wilczek Funeral Home, 249 Centre St., Freeland, is in charge of arrangements.

In lieu of flowers, the family would appreciate memorial donations be made to the Immaculate Conception Parish at St. Ann’s Church, 898 Centre St., Freeland, PA 18224.