Category: Pennsylvania

We Made the News!

standardspeakerOur thanks to writer, Jill Whalen, at the Standard-Speaker newspaper for writing an extensive article about the Genetti family of Hazleton, PA. When I sent out press releases a few months back, I had expected just a few paragraphs about our October reunion to be published in the paper. I was completely blown away by the full-page article detailing our family’s history in the area and their involvement in local business. Jill obviously did her research – digging into old family documents, genealogy records and newspaper archives. Since my memories of our family businesses are as a child – my father taking me for a visit to the Tyrolean Room (where he worked) or buying groceries at our local Genetti market, I was surprised by many of the details Jill included in her article. Some of which I wasn’t aware of! What a great piece to include in our growing family archive!

imagegallery1The complete article can be found as a link on our Family News page. Or just click here and go directly to the article page on our website.

Want to read the article online at the Standard-Speaker? Click here for the original story.

I’d like to acknowledge one detail left out of Jill’s article. It was brought to my attention by a descendant of Damiano and Oliva that there was no mention of their daughters or the role they played in establishing the family businesses. This was an unfortunate oversight and I offer my apologies.

Yes, it is my understanding that all of the children (including their daughters) worked hard to help the family prosper in a new land. Until they married and left the family home, the five Genetti daughters all contributed in some way to the growing business. Two daughters, Esther and Anne, also had official job titles within the Genetti company. According to the Federal Census, Esther never married and worked for many years as a bookkeeper in the family business. Youngest daughter, Anne, was also a bookkeeper in the Genetti offices until her marriage to James McNelis in 1932.

Our family history centers around the four Genetti sons, but often ignores their sisters and the part they played in establishing D. Genetti & Sons. My sincerest apologies to the descendants of these dedicated women (Dora, Tillie, Esther, Erminia and Angela) who were regrettably overlooked in this recent article.

I also would like to acknowledge the many grandchildren (and great-grandchildren!) of Daminano and Oliva who worked in the family businesses throughout the years. You are part of the entrepreneurial spirit our ancestors brought with them on the long journey from Castelfondo to Hazleton. I applaud your contribution to our family history!

Reunion Photos

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Genetti Family Reunion – 1987 – Hazleton, PA
First Row Seated, L to R: Gus Genetti, Esther Bott Clark, Jean Branz Daly, Catherine Branz LaPorte, Betty Zambotti Reich, Aunt Ann Genetti NcNelis, Leo Zambotti, Catherine Genetti Farkus, Rita Genetti Young, Agnes Bott York, Marianne Genetti, Bill Genetti. 1st Row Standing, L to R: Val Genetti, Gus Genetti III, Joseph LaPorte, Louis Reich, Erma Zambotti, Steve Farkus, Elaine White Young, unknown, unknown, Pat Genetti.

Thanks to Jean Branz Daly, we have just added a few more reunion group photos to our Reunion News page. Take a stroll down memory lane and see what the Genetti family looked like in years past. Click here then scroll to the bottom of the page to see reunions from 1983, 1987, 1992, 1994 and 1995. Jean even provided most of the names for the 1987 photo.

Alas, many of our old-timers are no longer with us. Some who were pictured in the early reunions, were born in Castelfondo, Tyrol (Stanley Genetti, Ann Genetti McNelis). We owe them a debt of gratitude as the first immigrants of our family. They came to Pennsylvania as children, forging a life for future generations. Their children were the first generation to be born in America. Many of our 1st generation family members are also pictured throughout the years (Jean Branz Daly, Catherine Branz LaPorte, Gus Genetti, Bill Genetti, Marianne Genetti, Betty Zambotti Reich).

Can you help identify others in our reunion photos? I know some, but not all. It would be a great gift to the family if we can positively identify each person in all of these photos. If you can help or you were in any of these photos, write me at info.genetti.family@gmail.com with your photo names, reunion year and position in the photo.

Many thanks to Jean Branz Daly (the granddaughter of Damiano and Oliva Genetti). Jean has been a frequent contributor to our family website and we are sincerely grateful! Grazie mille Jean!

Hey – have you sent in your Reunion Reservation yet? Only one week to go before the reservation deadline of September 1st! Don’t miss out on this special event – meet new cousins, hug old cousins, two special presentations, great food and loads of door prizes! It will be a memorable weekend for all, celebrating our Genetti Family heritage!

Check the links below for Reunion info:

Reunion News!

Reunion Reservation Form

Afternoon Workshop: The Basics of DNA Testing

Evening Presentation: The Genetti Family of Castelfondo: Our Journey to America

Reunion Prizes!

Reunion Sponsors

Reservation Deadline: Sept 1st!

Reunion-3smallHave you mailed your Reunion Reservation Form yet? The reservation deadline is fast approaching – you only have 15 days left to reserve your space for the Genetti Family Reunion 2016 (deadline is September 1st). What are you waiting for?

It’s important that all reservation forms are received by the requested deadline. Patrick at the Genetti Ballrooms needs a head count to reserve the right size room and to plan our meals. Please don’t delay – print your Reservation Form and mail it TODAY with payment. Click here for the online Reunion Reservation Form.

So far we have cousins attending from nine states! And I know from your emails, there are many more of you who are making the trip to Hazleton but haven’t sent in your reservations yet.

Only 50 days left until “Reunion 2016: A Gathering of Genetti Descendants.” Reunion Weekend, October 7-9, will give you the opportunity to meet new cousins, share family stories and learn about our shared ancestry. If you have enjoyed reading our family website, we have so much more to tell you during our special DNA workshop and evening presentation. Each and every one of you is a vital part of our Genetti heritage! We look forward to your attendance and participation at this event to celebrate our family and the centuries of history that came before us.

Stop by the Reunion News Page for updates and to read about our weekend presentations:

The Basics of DNA Testing

The Genetti Family of Castelfondo: Our Journey to America

Don’t hesitate – print out your reservation form and get it in the mail today!

I look forward to seeing all of you in October!

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

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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!

 

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!

Books by the Family

Constante Stanley Genetti

Stanley V. Genetti
1899-1988

I have just added a new page to our Gallery section: Books by Members of the Genetti Family. This important project has been on the back-burner for at least a year and now I am finally devoting time to making it happen.

We have two family members (that I know of) who have penned memoirs: Stanley Genetti (Pennsylvania) and Herman Genetti (Wyoming). Copies of both books have been forwarded to me through different channels. They were obviously written with a great deal of love and with the intention of sharing family history. Until now, both autobiographies existed only as paper copies in the possession of a few relatives. As personal legacies offering an account of life during a bygone era, I feel the narratives are an important part of our shared ancestry. In making them available on this website, I hope others will find great joy and comfort in the stories they tell. Perhaps the bios will inspire others to write their own account of life within the Genetti clan.

I am pleased to announce that The Autobiography of Stanley Genetti is now available on our website and can be download as a PDF file. This entertaining bio is a true treasure – I have read it several times and always find a new revelation with each reading. As with most memoirs, Stanley wrote this account from memory, including family stories and lore passed down from his elders, as well as autobiographical information about life as a businessman. I appreciated Stanley’s perspective of the Genetti businesses and the role he played within the family hierarchy. Since my grandfather, Leon Genetti, was Stanley’s older brother and one of his business partners, the memoir provides a peek into my own family dynamics.

StoreHeights-2

Genetti Store – Hazleton Heights, PA – 1921

Stanley self-published his book in 1981, distributing it to cousins, children and friends. As with any memoir, it’s always a good idea to check against genealogy records before using generational information as fact. At the time Stanley compiled his memories, there was no internet or the ability to fact-check against baptismal and death records. Written at the age of 82 and with both of his parents, (Damiano and Oliva) long gone, it would have been difficult to accurately record specifics about his parents’ siblings. Unfortunately several details about his aunts and uncles are not consistent with Castelfondo church records (the corrected information can be found on the Genetti online family tree). But hey – I hope I can look back on my life at 82 and remember so much! Kudos to you Stanley – your gift of memories will be treasured by future generations as a source of pride, recognizing the entrepreneurial spirit of our ancestors.

I hope you enjoy and share the legacy of story that Stanley left for us. Many thanks to his family who made this book available to me.

I am currently working on a digitize version of Herman Genetti’s book – Herman’s Howlings, and hope to have it online soon. If there are other family journals, collections of letters or biographies out there, gathering dust while stashed in a forgotten shoe box, please consider sharing these pearls of wisdom with us. If they are only available in paper form, mail me a Xeroxed copy. I will gladly spend the time to digitize it into a PDF format and post it on our website.

Thank you once again to all of our contributors. Through your efforts, we are building a genealogical endowment for future generations.

I invite you to take a few moments and visit our ever-growing Gallery Section!

 

 

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!

What Can a Death Certificate Tell You?

Leone A. Genetti

Leon A. Genetti
1887-1962

I’ve been thinking about this post for some time. A few months ago I decided to research all death certificates related to my immediate family. Now this might not sound like a pleasant task, but from a genealogy perspective a death certificate can yield a wealth of information. Unfortunately, not all states have their records readily available through online data bases. However, the state of Pennsylvania has recently published their death certificates online for the years 1906 through 1963. Since most of my family settled, lived and died in Pennsylvania, it was easy to track down this information at Ancestry.com.

What can a Certificate of Death tell us? If the information is properly and correctly notated, you’ll find the following: name of parents, name of spouse, age and date of birth, birthplace, occupation, social security number, address, cause of death, and a number of other interesting facts about this person. The info provided can be extremely beneficial, filling in unknown gaps in your ancestor’s genealogical record. My reason for researching family death certificates was a bit more personal.

I wanted to check the Medical Certificate section of the death records along with the cause of death. Although I am reasonably still young and in good health, there have been a few health-related issues present on my most recent annual check-ups (high cholesterol and high glucose levels). I wanted to see if heredity was playing a role in elevating my health stats.

Leon Genetti

Pennsylvania Certificate of Death,
Leon Genetti – 1962
click to enlarge

It didn’t take long to track down the Certificates of Death for both of my fraternal grandparents (Leon Genetti and Angeline Marchetti) and three great-grandparents (Oliva Zambotti Genetti, Giovanni Battista Marchetti and Catterina Lucia Fellin Marchetti). As I suspected, heart-related issues and diabetes were listed as contributing factors of death on four out of five of their certificates. Our genetic make-up is a veritable vegetable soup of inherited DNA snippets! And my DNA was most likely hard-wired with an increased probability towards heart disease and Type II diabetes.

Although I wasn’t particularly happy to read this news, it confirmed that my genetic make-up needed to be taken into account when making personal health decisions such as altering my diet, exercise, etc.

Curious about health issues and the reason of death for your ancestors? Gaining this knowledge could be a great asset to your own health and well-being. If you’re a member of Ancestry.com, take advantage of their huge card catalog of searchable data bases. So far they include Death indexes for Pennsylvania, Texas, California, North Carolina, Kentucky, Ohio and Tennessee, with more records being added daily. If you don’t have access to Ancestry.com, drop me an email with the name of the ancestor you are looking for, along with their date of death and place of death. If their Certificate of Death is available online, I’ll find it for you.

If the record is not posted online, an alternative method is to contact the county or state vital records office in the place where the death of your ancestor took place. They will provide you with a hard copy of their death certificate.

Need more info? Here’s a page by legal experts, NOLO, on “How to Get a Death Certificate“.

A Recent Comment

Leone and Angeline (Marchetti) Genetti. Probably photographed early 1950's.

Leone and Angeline (Marchetti) Genetti. Probably photographed early 1950’s.

Last week I received a charming comment from William Santini on the Photograph Page of our Gallery Section. I was delighted that William was writing about my grandparents, Leone and Angeline Genetti! Since comments are often overlooked, I have re-posted his message below along with my response. It’s wonderful that other American Tyrolean families are stopping by The Genetti Family Genealogy Project to enjoy our shared heritage. Thank you William – your memories are much appreciated!

William Santini – July 5, 2015: “Our grandfather, Martin Santini, was close friends of Leon and Angeline Genetti. My brother Richard and I remember from the late 50’s and 60’s being with our grandparents in Hazleton, at their home for a polenta party, visiting the Genetti market, going to a coal mining area where there was a smoldering underground fire from a collapsed mine and even a trip o the Saint Lawrence with them and our grandparents. We have some photos somewhere. My grandmother was from the Fellin family, also from Hazleton. Several of the Fellin sisters married some of the Santini brothers. There was a Fellin family reunion held in the 70’s at your motel and catered by your family. Any one have some knowledge of those old days? We remember how close friends our grandparents were with Leon and his wife Angeline. Your polenta was different from what my grandparents made – you used chestnut flour as part of your mixture. I talk too much. We would love to hear from your family.”

Louise Genetti Roach – July 5, 2015: “Hi William, thank you for writing such a wonderful comment! I am the granddaughter of Leon and Angeline Genetti and also have fond memories of my Nona and Nono. Unfortunately I was just a young child when they passed away in the early 60’s. But my parents started their marriage living in the apartment above my grandparents’ home and I often spent afternoons with them until the age of five. I remember my Nona showing me how she made polenta pie in a big, black cast iron skillet and my Nono making Tyrolean sausage in the basement then hanging it on hooks in his walk-in refrigerator. We are most likely related since Angeline’s mother (my great-grandmother) was also a Fellin. I would guess that your grandmother and my grandmother were probably first or second cousins. The Genetti Hotel in Hazleton was first owned by Gus Genetti Sr., brother to Leon. His son Bill Genetti then took it over in the 70’s. Bill and I are first cousins, once removed since he is from my father’s generation. The hotel was recently sold and Bill has now retired. There are not many of the older family left – only one of Leon and Angeline’s children is still alive, my Uncle Leon who still lives in Hazleton. My grandfather had eight siblings, the last passed away in 2005 at the age of 102 (Angela Maria Genetti McNelis). There are only about ten surviving children from my father’s generation (their children). Please fell free to email me directly at info.genetti.family@gmail.com. It would be interesting to find out if we have a common Fellin ancestor. If you send me info on your Fellin lineage (names and birth dates) I might be able to find the link. I can trace the Fellin family back four generations beginning with my great-grandmother Catterina Lucia Fellin. I look forward to hearing from you.”

The Genetti Family sends their best wishes to the Santini and Fellin families! If anyone would like to contact William Santini directly, please write me and I will provide you with his email address.

Did you know that you can leave a comment at the end of every page found on The Genetti Family Genealogy Project and on individual blog posts? Just scroll to the bottom of a page and type in the box labeled “Leave a Reply”. As webmaster, your message will first be emailed to me. I check each comment to make sure it’s not “spam” and then approve it to be posted on the site. So far, our most popular page for comments is the Photograph Page.You can also share any page on a social network by using the share buttons found at the bottom of each page. Sharing can be done through WordPress, Twitter, Facebook, and Google Plus.

Stop by and leave a comment on your favorite family page. Others will appreciate your insights, memories and opinions!