Buona Festa Della Donna!

Today I’ve been sharing this picture on social media–a snap of one of my favorite ancestresses (I spend so much time studying these ladies; I sure hope I’m allowed to pick favorites!). She is the lovely lady on the right, a California girl, pictured sometime around 1911 while out on the town with a friend. Isn’t she a dapper doll? I adore her! She is a woman whose life I have spent the past couple of years studying, and I hope to spend many more until I come up with a very in-depth narrative of her story. Among her amazing life accomplishments, she served in the Navy during Word War I. Love it! 🙂

New Italian American Biography Publication Announced

I’m excited to announce the publication of another book about Luigi Del Bianco, the Mount Rushmore sculptor featured in Lou Bianco’s book In the Shadow of the Mountain:

Screen shot 2014-03-03 at 2.52.46 PM

Del Bianco is described by the author as “the man who saved Jefferson’s face and brought Lincoln’s eyes to life.”

The second book about Del Bianco is set for release in May of 2014, according to a recent press release.

I can’t wait to read it! 🙂

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How to Prove Your Pedigree (infographic)

I’ve seen many researchers and students confuse historical records with evidence or proof. Historical records are sources of information. From these sources–and the information they contain–researchers must find evidence, then apply that information and evidence to the drafting of proof.

Because many of my students find this process confusing, I’ve designed an infographic  to help them:

Genealogy Document Analysis infographic

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Italian Americans of Boston

For Italian Americans with Boston roots, I’ve got great news from Boston’s North End Historical Society! Documentary filmmaker Maureen McNamara of Kendall Productions is looking for your old photos, home movies, or newspaper clips from the family scrapbooks. Check out what they’ve put together so far:

If you and your family would like to be a part of this historic undertaking, you can send your materials to the North End Historical Society at : NorthEndHS@gmail.com.

The North End Historical Society is a 501(c)3 non-profit, so they need your help raising the funds for this project, as well! Contributions are tax-deductible, so send them in to NorthEndBoston.org or send a check to:
North End Historical Society, Inc.
P.O. BOX 130152
Boston, MA 02113

Italian American Research on NBC Tonight!

Genealogy buffs and Italian Americans–you don’t want to miss tonight’s episode of Who Do You Think You Are, which will feature a trip to Italy and a murder mystery in actress Marisa Tomei’s family tree:

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Family History for Beginners

For those of you who want to do genealogy but don’t know how to get started, you will *love* these videos for beginners that were posted by FamilySearch to their YouTube Channel!

With the rising popularity of genealogy as a hobby (thanks to shows like NBC’s “Who Do You Think You Are?”), people everywhere are wondering how to get started with their own family history research, so these videos are very helpful!

How to Find Your Italian Ancestors

With the help of this research guide–written by one of the top experts in the field of Italian Genealogy–Italian Americans can conduct their own family history research!

I heartily recommend this fabulous book to anyone with Italian ancestry who wants to explore their family history:

suzanne's book

Find YOUR Ancestors Here!

Thank you, Italian Genealogy Group, for all the effort and hard work that went into into these databases of immigrant records!
Those of us who use these databases should consider the time and expense required to undertake such an enormous project; I propose thanking them with a donation, especially because they offer these databases FOR FREE (unlike some other sites whose names don’t deserve mention here).

Restricting Access to Catholic Records

Catholics told not to give LDS parish data
By Geoffrey FattahDeseret News
Published: May 4, 2008

The Catholic Church has ordered dioceses across the globe not to give information in parish registers to members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

The Vatican Congregation for Clergy issued a letter directing all Catholic bishops to keep LDS members from microfilming and digitizing information in registers, according to the Catholic News Service.

To read the complete text of this article, click here.

On a lighter note, a prominent UK writer had some funny arguments against this restriction of church records to researchers. You can read it here.