Road Trip

Circa 1950 Laurie, Great-Aunt Carmela and cousin Michael at he farm in Port Jervis NY
Circa 1950 Laurie, Great-Aunt Carmela and cousin Michael at “the farm” in Port Jervis NY

I had called Margaret, introduced myself and spoke about the family and my research. We made a date to meet. Soon after, on a gorgeous Saturday morning, I drove 100+ miles to my sister Laurie’s house. After having coffee and talking, we set out. Laurie wanted to drive! Yikes!! My sister thought she was a great driver. It was a bumpy and terrorizing 100 mile ride to Port Jervis in New York.

Thankfully we found the house. A woman opened the door. He said “Hello, my name is Margaret, and my mother-in-law, Carmela, was the sister of your grandfather Frank”. Incredible!! We had a light lunch with wine and chatted. Margaret told us that there was a trunk in the attic. Then, the door into the kitchen and opened a man and two girls entered. Maragret introduced her son Michael and his two daughters. Incredible!! More cousins!!

After lunch, Michael brought the trunk down from the attic and opened a box nestled inside it. OMG!! There were many documents inside!! The most important – the birth certificate of Camilla(aka Carmela) Cottone!!! The city of birth listed was Librizzi Messina !! So, I know the city where my grandfather was born!! After this discovery, we went to the local cemetery to pay our respects to our relatives.

Later that evening on the way home, Laurie asked me “Now what?” I told her I needed to obtain the address of the Comuni in Librizzi, Messina, Sicily, Italy……

One thought on “Road Trip”

  1. Its nice to see this old picture of Aunt Carmela – when we visited her I used to love to sit in her garden and eat figs!! To this day, whenever I smell tomatoes just plucked from the vine, I think of her because she let me help her gather her veggies! Peaches make me think of her putting them in red wine – and letting me drink some too even though I wasn’t that old – that’s what I like a lot about Italian families – they let the kids sample everything!!!!!

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