Category: Photos

Anatomy of a Photograph, Part 4

Marriage License of Peter Dallachiesa and Virginia Fedrizzi

Time to search for the actual date of our double wedding! Fortunately, the state of Pennsylvania has cooperated with Ancestry.com in releasing many of their public records. Although not all documents are available at this time, Pennsylvania birth, marriage and death records are continually being updated with new information.

Now that I knew the identity of our wedding couples, I did a general search using the names of both grooms, leaving open the date of the wedding. Yes! Success! The marriage licenses issued for Peter Dallachiesa and Riccardo (labeled as Richard in the photo) Fedrizzi were easily accessible online!

Marriage License of Riccardo Fedrizzi and Angelina Cologna

The licenses were both issued on January 23, 1909 with the marriage date set as February 13, 1909. Now we had the exact date of our group photo and confirmation through public record. This later date made much more sense as Tillie Genetti had now been in the United States for over two years and by this time was most likely participating in social gatherings with family and friends. I made the correction to our Photograph page with the double wedding officially taking place on February 13, 1909. According to Google, this date fell on a Saturday.

If we look a little closer at Riccardo and Angelina’s license record, we see an interesting mistake. Errors are common as I have often found name, spelling and date mistakes in many public records – especially in rural communities where correct spelling was not all that important. For this reason, it’s always a good idea to find several sources to confirm historical information.

In this case the birth date of Riccardo Fedrizzi is stated as December 17, 1897. Hmmmm – that would mean our groom was only twelve years old at the time of his wedding! Luckily, someone later spotted the error and made the correction using a side note next to the record. The year of his birth had been transposed and should have been 1879 – making Riccardo a respectable 29 year old groom. His bride, Angelina Cologna, was 23 years old.

Anna Ottilia Genetti Nensteil

With our mystery solved, I wondered how the story of Lucia giving birth became associated with this photo since Albert’s birth date did not match that of the wedding. Maybe one of Raffaele and Lucia Genetti’s other children had been born on that day. Since Albert was second to the youngest, the only possibility would be his little sister, Anna Ottilia.

Returning back to our Ancestry records, I soon located Anna’s birth record. It was dated January 9, 1909. Well that was close to our wedding date, but obviously a month prior to our nuptial event. Apparently somewhere along the line a creative family historian had attached a fanciful story to the photograph and the legend stuck.

On a final note, look closely at Anna’s birth record. There are two mistakes – her middle name is incorrectly spelled as is her father’s name! So much for accuracy! I guess that’s the job of a family genealogist – to find and correct the errors of by gone days.

Anna’s birth record

In our next blog post we will begin exploring individual stories connected to our wedding photograph.

Part 5 coming soon!

Anatomy of a Photograph, Part 3

Manifest of Alien Passenger for the U.S. Immigration Officer at Port of Arrival – 1906

Let’s skip ahead to 2020 and the discovery that inspired this entire series. During the past year I had been working with Loretta Cologna transcribing the school notebook of Tillie Genetti, who was my grandfather’s younger sister. As we worked through the text, adding historical information about Tillie and her siblings, I naturally used a timeline to trace personal information and immigration dates for my great-aunts and uncles. The family had arrived during three separate years: 1902, 1904 and 1906. Tillie, with her mother and five siblings, disembarked from their ship at Ellis Island in 1906. Although I had always been aware of the family’s immigration years, I had not paid close attention to the specific dates other than noting the Manifest Passenger List as a source citation in my Ancestry family tree.

Record of Aliens Held for Special Inquiry – arrival date December 3, 1906

While working on the school notebook, I was particularly interested in the transitional period of Tillie’s life between her final school year in Castelfondo and her new life in Pennsylvania. As I created her timeline I noted Tillie’s arrival in New York City on December 3rd, 1906. This date is correct and confirmed through public record according to the ship’s manifest and Ellis Island passenger records.

L to R: Dora Genetti, Richard Fedrizzi, Angeline Cologna, Tillie Genetti

A few months later while I was updating sections of our family website and playing with a new photo colorization tool, I stopped in my tracks! It suddenly occurred to me – the date included in the caption for the boarding house photo was suspect! Since Tillie and her older sister Dora had both attended the wedding and were clearly pictured standing in the front row, the date of October 1906 could not possibly be correct. Here’s why: while we believe Dora arrived sometime in 1902 with her father and sister Ester (there are no public records to confirm this year), Tillie had not arrived until much later in December of 1906 – three months after the supposed date of when the photo was taken – October of 1906!

Obviously, the story of Lucia Genetti giving birth upstairs in 1906 while a wedding took place downstairs was an interesting family legend – but alas, not founded in truth! Public immigration records verified this date could not be accurate as Tillie was not living in Pennsylvania in October 1906!

But what was the true date?

Although I was fond of the story attached to our infamous photo, it was obvious that we needed to correct the misnomer. It was time to dig into Pennsylvania marriage records at Ancestry.com to learn more!

Part 4 – coming soon!

Note – In both documents from Ellis Island we see that Oliva and her five children were detained for further examination. It appears that little Ann was only about three years old at the time and suffering from a hip problem. In Stanley Genetti’s biography he explains:

“Before we left Europe my three year old sister, Ann, suffered from leg poisoning and had to be operated on. She was still unable to walk when our ship docked at Ellis Island and my oldest sister carried her. One of the inspectors told her to put Ann down and let her walk. When she responded that Ann could not walk, they were both detained for special inquiry.

“The rest of the family had passed through inspection when we received the bad news. We had to wait three days for my father to arrive from Hazleton. During our wait mother became very upset. She said she feared that we would all be deported, but I think that she was more afraid that the two girls would be deported by themselves. Finally, my father arrived and convinced the authorities that he would have a doctor treat my sister and she would never become a public charge. We were released on the fourth day.”

Extra note: Little Ann went on to have a successful life and career, reaching the amazing age of 102 – outliving her entire family!

Anatomy of a Photograph, Part 2

Albert Lawrence Genetti (1906-1990)

When Ralph Genetti handed me the boarding house photo, it was numbered on the front and the names of those present were noted on the back. It also contained the date of October 1906. Ralph related an interesting story associated with the photo passed down through family legend during the past one hundred years. Supposedly while the wedding celebrations were taking place downstairs, his grandmother Lucia was upstairs giving birth to Albert (1906-1990), Ralph’s father. Since Albert was born on October 21, 1906, this seemed to confirm the date printed on the back of the photo.

No caption was provided and it was difficult to determine exactly who had married who since many of the people in the front row were wearing corsages. Eventually I was able to conclude that two siblings, Richard and Virginia Fedrizzi, had taken vows on that day. Virginia had married Peter Dallachiesa. But Richard Fedrizzi’s bride was labeled only as Mrs. Richard Fedrizzi. Not much help!

Peter Dallachiesa and Virginia Fedrizzi

I dutifully published the photo on our website along with the information and date provided on the back, although I felt it unfair to name one of the brides “Mrs. Fedrizzi” – as if she had no identity of her own. Unfortunately, at that time Ancestry.com was just beginning to add Pennsylvania wedding documents to their data base and I found nothing listed for a Fedrizzi wedding taking place in October of 1906.

A year passed and I received an email from a descendant of the Dallachiesa family. Arleen had seen our wedding photo and also wondered about the identity of the bride. Could she possibly be one of her ancestors? Arleen did a little research and soon wrote back to me. The bride was not from the Dallachiesa family. She was a woman named Angeline Cologna. And like most of the people in this photo, Angeline was a recent immigrant from our ancestral village of Castelfondo.

Our photo was updated with the newly found name. The bride of Richard Fedrizzi now had an identity!

Richard Fedrizzi and Angeline Cologna

Although Arleen had found the name of our illusive bride, she had not provided the date of the wedding, probably assuming the date I had listed was correct. I assumed the same thing!

That was my mistake. I had broken the number one rule of genealogy – never assume a date, event or name is correct unless substantiated by several public sources.

And the saga continues …

Watch for Part 3 – coming soon!

(Note: click on photos for a larger view)

Anatomy of a Photograph, Part 1

Photo taken in 1909, in front of Raffaele Genetti’s boarding house and saloon in Weston, PA. Group includes members of the following families: Genetti, Zambotti, Marchetti, Dallachiesa, Martini, Springetti, Yannes, Recla.

I’m sure you have heard the old adage: A picture is worth a thousand words. Recently this saying echoed in my brain as I updated a large group photo from the Genetti family of Pennsylvania. So much so, that I decided to write an entire blog series about the people and stories hiding behind the faces that stared back at me.

If you are a frequent visitor to our website, I’m sure you are familiar with the group photo memorializing a double wedding taking place at Raffaele and Lucia Genetti’s boarding house/bar in Weston, Pennsylvania. I received the photo at a family reunion in 2012. It was given to me by Ralph Genetti, the grandson of Raffaele and Lucia; and was the first photo I published on our new website in 2014. Over the years I have received many emails from descendants of those pictured in Ralph’s photograph.

Colorized photo

A few months ago I decided to use a new online tool to “colorize” the original black and white photo. I loved the results and thought it was a nice way to enhance this period image dating from the turn of the century. Taking a closer look at the newly colorized photo, I glanced at our website to check the caption. Immediately I noticed a glaring error! Although the photo had been online for the past six years, no one (including me) had caught the mistake!

The caption has since been corrected. But I was fascinated by the photo’s provenance and how a family story had persisted for over a hundred years, misinterpreting the true date of that day’s event. The following series will examine photo details as I compare dates and people to public records. I will also delve into historical information we have for each person, telling their story through documents, photos and whatever else I can find from other sources.

As you will soon find out, this picture is certainly worth a thousand words – and more!

Stay tuned for Part 2!

Creative Endeavors, Part 2

Today I’m doing something a little different in our Creative Endeavors series. I decided to share with you a family memory through a video blog post. Since I have a rather introverted nature, this was a bit out of my comfort zone and something new for me. But in this time of social isolation, video sharing and Zoom online meet-ups – I thought “why not”! So I set up my smart phone and gave it a try.

Do you have a family photo you would like to share along with a story about the photograph? How about your own video of some special time in your family. Maybe even a digitized home movie would be fantastic to share here on our family blog. Let me know by leaving a comment on this blog post or email your photo/video with story to info.genetti.family@gmail.com and I will feature it in an upcoming post.

I hope you enjoy my video and I look forward to sharing your memories with our family of Genetti descendants.

Be smart and stay safe!

Photo Gallery: Michigan Genetti Family

click to enlarge

I have just added our first photograph to the Michigan Genetti Family Photo Gallery. Thanks to John and Nancy Faulkner, we have a beautiful period image from Bessemer, Michigan dated 1919.

Representing three families, the photograph appears to have been casually posed on a family porch. All of the parents pictured here came from the Val di Non and likely moved to Bessemer (near Ironwood, MI) because it was a mining region with available work. Many Tyroleans, including several Genetti cousins, settled in this area.

Those pictured according to the handwritten note attached to the photograph are:

Standing in back: Flora (Marchetti) Ferrari, Mrs. and Mr. Menghini, Primo Emil Joseph (child), Maria (Marchetti) Genetti and Pietro Genetti.

Seated front: Albert Joseph Genetti, Joseph Ferrari and Florian Ferrari

Here is a little background information about the families in this photo:

Angelo Pietro (Peter) Genetti (1882 -1964) and Maria (Mary) Marchetti (1892-1962), both of Castelfondo, Tyrol, married in Hurley, Wisconsin in 1915. Settling in Bessemer, Michigan near Ironwood, where Pietro was a miner, the couple had three sons: Primo Emil Joseph (1914-1977), Albert Joseph (1916-1981) and Florian Joseph (1923-1997).

Emil and Albert had long, distinguished military careers. Emil attended Michigan State University, became a doctor and joined the US Army, serving in WW II and Korea. Emil retired  as a Colonel and went on to practice medicine in California.

Like his older brother, Albert attended Michigan State University, graduating with a bachelor of science in forestry. He joined the US Army as a career military man rising to the rank of Colonel. Albert was a World War II veteran. Special note: Albert’s son, also named Albert Joseph Genetti, Jr., attended West Point, is in the Military Times Hall of Valor, and retired as a decorated Major General from the US Army. (Click here to see more about Albert Jr.)

The couple’s third son, Florian, owned a barber shop in Bessemer and became a local politician.

Peter and Mary divorced in 1930 after fifteen years of marriage, with Mary gaining custody of the three boys. She eventually remarried Joseph Regis.

Next we look at Emma Fiorentina (Flora) Marchetti (1884-1959), originally from Castelfondo, who marries Pietro (Peter) Giambattista Ferrari (1877-1959) from Revo (Peter is not shown). In 1905 the couple marry and live in Wisconsin. The two boys seated on the right in the photograph are, Joseph Christopher Ferrari (1911-1999) and Florian Lewis Ferrari (1909-1986). Joseph and Florian were the couple’s youngest children. They also had a daughter, Mary Elizabeth Ferrarri (1906-1976) and another son, George David Ferrari (1908-1992). All four of the children were born in Wisconsin. The family later moved to Bessemer, Michigan where Peter supported his family as a miner.

Moving on to the older couple in the center of the photo, I’m not positive of their identification, but I believe they are Richardo Menghini (1860-?) and his wife Maria (Flor) Menghini (1864-?). Both of Brez, Tyrol, the couple came to Bessemer sometime in the 1880’s. They had a total of seven children. According to the obituary of one son, Louis Menghini (1889-1952), the family returned to Brez in 1894. By 1907 Louis and his family came back to Bessemer. From the date of this photo, we know that Richardo and Maria Menghini were neighbors of the Genetti and Ferrari families in 1919. But by this time the couple’s many children were adults and probably not living at home when this photo was taken.

We would like to thank John and Nancy Faulkner for contributing to our Family Photo Gallery. Nancy is the granddaughter of Pietro (Peter) Giambattista Ferrari and Emma Fiorentina (Flora) Marchetti who is pictured standing on the far left of our group photo. Mille grazie Nancy and John!

Photo Gallery Links:

Michigan Genetti Family

Pennsylvania Genetti Family

Wyoming Genetti Family

Illinois Genetti Family

Washington Genetti/Recla Family

Castelfondo Genetti Family

Buon Natale

Christmas window, Salzburg, Austria

My many thanks to all of our cousins, near and far, for sharing family memories during 2019. As our website continues to grow with the history of our ancestors, I thank you for your continuing support. You are the reason I am a genealogist!

Traditional Tyrolean outfits, shop window
Salzburg, Austria

Ti auguro un dolce e sereno Natale – I wish you a sweet and peaceful Christmas!

See you in 2020!

PS – I will be taking a few weeks off from our family blog, returning in January with more ancestral history and interesting bits of trivia. Until then: Buon Natale e Felice Anno Nuovo!

Photos from the Bott Family

Dora and Verecondo Bott,
probably early 1950’s
click to enlarge

A few months ago I received an email from Adriana Genetti along with three photos. Adriana is the youngest of four Genetti sisters from Castelfondo. She and her sisters are my 3rd cousins, once removed. On previous visits to Italy, I have had the pleasure to meet and socialize with Maria, Lidia and Luciana – Adriana’s older sisters. But I have yet to meet Adriana in person. However I do know that our Italian cousins (as well as many friends from Castelfondo) read our family blog and occasionally they send us photos and documents. I always look forward to their insight and comments.

Adriana’s email arrived in late August and was in Italian. I used Google Translator to read her message. Here is what she wrote:

Hello Louise!

Unfortunately, you and I have never met, but I know who you are and I know you. I’m writing to send you some photos of the Genetti family of America. During a trip to Assisi with my sister Luciana, I met a person from Salter who has family ties to the Bott family. We talked with her about our American relatives and she kindly gave me some photos that I now send to you.

50th Wedding Anniversary Dinner for
Condy and Anna Bott, 1957
click to enlarge

The first photo shows Dora Genetti (daughter of Damiano) with her husband Verecondo Bott. The other two photos also show Dora Genetti with her husband and other people in your family that you probably recognize. I hope you enjoy this message.

Sincerely,
Adriana Genetti

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Well, I must admit – Adriana’s photos had me stumped for some time! Of course, I knew who Dora and Verecondo Bott were. But I was completely baffled by the group photos! Usually I only post photographs on our website if I can confirm details, dates and possibly the story attached to the pictures. Unfortunately, I’m not that familiar with the Bott family and did not recognize anyone in the group photos. This certainly was going to take a bit of investigation on my part to decipher the event, find a date and identify the people pictured in Adriana’s photos.

Guests at anniversary dinner, 1957
click to enlarge

The title attached to one photograph gave me my first clue: “50 cena dei 50 anni fratelli Bott”. This was a 50th Anniversary dinner and had something to do with the Bott brothers.

Look closely and you will see a cake topper with the number “50” positioned on the head table in front of one couple. On further inspection, I recognized Addorlorata (Dora) Bott seated on the far left side of the head table, but not with her husband Verecondo. However, two other men at the head table had a very close resemblance to Verecondo Bott – the man seated in the center and the gentleman dressed in the light-colored jacket, second from the right. Examining other details, I guessed that the event took place sometime in the 1950’s. Since Dora was in attendance, I surmised the dinner was probably held in or near Hazleton, Pennsylvania.

Hazleton Standard Sentinel,
June 22, 1957
click to enlarge

With these clues in mind, I went to work digging into various research websites. With help from Newspapers.com and Ancestry.com I found what I was looking for.

After searching the Hazleton papers, circa 1950’s for the surname of Bott, I eventually narrowed my findings down to two articles that tell the story of Adriana’s photos. (see articles pictured in this post)

The group photographs were taken at a 50th Wedding Anniversary dinner for Mr. and Mrs. Condy Bott on June 22nd, 1957. Condy (short for Condido and incorrectly spelled as “Coney” in the first newspaper article) was the brother of Verecondo Bott, husband of Dora Genetti. So the couple at the center of the table were Condy Bott and his wife of 50 years, Anna Maria Seppi Bott. The people seated at the other tables were Condy and Anna’s adult children with their families. It was obvious that Condy looked very much like his brother Verecondo. 

But why was Dora at the dinner without her husband and who was the 2nd man at the table who also resembled Verecondo?

The rest of the story fell in place after I located Verecondo’s obituary dated July of 1955 (see below). Dora was seated at the head table because she was part of the Bott family. However her husband Verecondo passed away in 1955, two years prior to his brother’s 50th Wedding Anniversary. Therefore, he obviously was not at this event.

In Verecondo’s obituary it states that he is survived by two brothers: Condy of Drifton, PA and Silvio of Tyrol. Although I’m not certain, but I believe the man at the head table, second from the right is most likely the younger brother Silvio. He must have traveled to Pennsylvania to visit his family and take part in the celebration. Silvio was the baby of the family and much younger than his two brothers. I found no documentation that Silvio ever immigrated from the village of Salter to the United States. Therefore we can probably assume the anniversary photos were passed down through the descendants of Silvio Bott. And according to Adriana’s email, these descendants still lived in Salter, Val di Non!

In conclusion to this very long blog post – I also searched and found the obituaries for both Condy and Anna, (see below).

Condido Angelo Bott was born in Salter, Tyrol on December 11, 1876. He died in Drifton, Pennsylvania on Decemeber 8, 1958 at the age of 72.

Anna Maria Seppi Bott was born in Lattimer, Pennsylvania on January 3, 1888. She passed away in Hazleton, Pennsylvania on February 10, 1974 at the age of 86.

I have also included the obituary for Addolorata “Dora” Genetti Bott, born August 12, 1889 in Castefondo, Val di Non; died October 11, 1971 in Hazleton, Pennsylvania.

Our thanks to Adriana Genetti for thinking of her American cousins and sharing these special photos with our extended family. Adriana’s photographs have also been added to our Pennsylvania Photo Page.

Obituary of Verecondo Bott, 1955, The Plain Speaker
click to enlarge

 

Obituary of Condy Bott, 1958,
The Plain Speaker
click to enlarge

 

Obituary of Anna Maria Seppi Bott, 1974
click to enlarge

 

Obituary of Dora Genetti Bott, 1971, Standard Speaker
click to enlarge

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Memories from the 1930’s

Genetti’s Annual Outing, Hazleton, PA – 1934
click on photo to enlarge

A few weeks ago I received a visit from a fellow genealogist and Tyrolean, Judy Givens. Judy lives just six hours up the road from me in Colorado. We met online through the Facebook group Trentino Genealogy – La Genealogia del Trentino of which we are both members. Like me, she is 50% Tyrolean and was born in Hazleton, Pennsylvania.

Louise and Judy chatting about their Hazleton families

Sometime ago Judy emailed me about a group of photos saved by her father, dating to the early 1930’s. At the time, her father worked for – you guessed it – the Genetti Markets! Judy said she would stop for a visit next time she was in New Mexico and bring her photo memorabilia with her.

We finally met-up in August, sharing memories of Hazleton, laughing about our overlapping family stories and, of course, discussing the three photos she had brought for me to scan.

What a surprise! The large panoramic was a group picture taken at a Genetti staff picnic, circa 1934. I immediately recognized the four Genetti brothers reclining on the grass, front and center. Dressed in summer white, were Stanley, Albert, Leon (my grandfather) and Gus Sr. What a fantastic moment captured on film!

From the Hazleton Plain Speaker,
July 1934

After scanning the photograph and enlarging it for restoration, I had another surprise. Sitting directly behind Stanley (first brother on the left) is an elderly woman. It was Oliva, mother of the four brothers (and my great-grandmother)! Looking closely at the many smiling faces, I recognized one more person. The young boy sitting behind the third brother from the left, Leon, was my Uncle John! In 1934, John Damian Genetti, Leon’s oldest son, would have been fifteen years old. As an adult, he worked as a butcher for the Genetti Markets.

Wondering if any newspaper notices existed for the event, I searched Newspapers.com for the month of July 1934. Yes, there was a short article about the company picnic published in the Hazleton Plain Speaker. Now we had a bit of info to go along with the photograph.

 

From the Standard Sentinel
June 9, 1934

I was amazed that in 1934, during the years of the Great Depression, Genetti Markets employed two hundred people. I wondered just how many neighborhood groceries had been opened by the four Genetti brothers. From June of 1934, I found a clipping listing all of the local Genetti markets. At the time of the company picnic, there was a total of eleven markets run by D. Genetti and Sons.

Judy’s other images were just as compelling. I immediately recognized Genetti’s Popular street store in Hazleton. It was the family’s first neighborhood market, managed and operated by my grandfather, Leon Genetti.

Located at 436 South Poplar in Hazleton Heights, the market was right next door to my grandparents’ home. When I was a little girl in 1960, my grandmother Angeline would take me by the hand, walk me next door and let me pick out penny candy and little tubes of toothpaste. I remembered the old-fashioned hanging lights and stamped tin ceiling, exactly as pictured in Judy’s photos. Of course by 1960, my grandfather had long ago retired. But his son-in-law, Steve Kashi (married to Leon’s daughter Adeline), now owned and operated the little market next door.

Judy’s father, Quentin Knies, is standing to the left of the post, wearing a bowtie. Genetti Market on Poplar St., early 1930’s.
click on photo to enlarge

Judy’s photos from the early 1930’s pictured the interior of the grocery store along with several employees. Her father, Quentin “Knute” Knies (1910-1974) stands to the right of the gentleman in a suit.

With a little research, I learned that “Knute” lived right down the street from the market on South Poplar. What a small world it is indeed! Judy’s father had worked for my grandfather, lived on the same street as my family and most likely knew my aunts and uncles, perhaps even my father who was only a toddler in 1934.

My special thanks to Judy Givens for finding me, making the trip to Santa Fe and sharing her photographic memories with our website followers.

Judy’s father “Knute” is the tall fellow on the left. Genetti Market, Poplar St., early 1930’s.
Click on photo to enlarge.

I hope to see you in the future, Judy, when I take my next trip to Colorado. Mille grazie et un abbreccio!

All three photographs have been added to our Photo Gallery. You can find them on the Pennsylvania Genetti Family page.

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.