Umberto DeLellis Update

I received the marriage certificate today for Umberto DeLellis, my 2x great Uncle, brother of my great grandmother Filomena Langellotti nee DeLellis.

Just to recap, Umberto (1890) married Michelina Mastangelo(1884), daughter of Salvatore Mastangelo and Nicolina Leggiers. They were married on April 2, 1911. This is basically all I know about Umberto and Michelina.



I had hoped getting the marriage license would open up an avenue for discovering more about their lives, children, but unfortunately I haven’t found much more in the way of records or their life after marriage. Here is what I learned however from the certificate and it’s a start.

Umberto was living in Manhattan not in Rhode Island as was Michelina when they married. Umberto at 290 E. 149th and Michelina at 2038 1st Ave (not sure 1st is correct as the 1 written is quite different than the 1 written under number of marriages category on cert.). Michelina was older than Umberto by about 6 years. Umberto was working as a driver. They were married at Mt Carmel Church ~ 447 E 115th St by Rev. Robert Sorgi




Something else surprising jumped out at me however and that was the witnesses. Pasquale Vetri, which means nothing at this time to me but the name of the second witness, Filomena DeLellis. This must have been my great grandmother and although she was already married with the last name of Langellotti, I feel very confident this must have been her. Filomena would have been about 34 at that time. There is no one else I have yet to discover that would have fit this possibility.

I had hoped these few new clues would lead to more discoveries but they haven’t. I have had no luck in in discovering anything else on the couple at this time.


Umberto DeLellis

In my last post I wrote about Vincenzo DeLellis (1863 – 1915), son of Francesco DeLellis (1828 – 1908)  and Anna (LNU). Vincenzo was their only son. Francesco went on to marry Caterina Loffredo (1853 – 1918) after the presumed passing of his 1st wife Anna. I have no additional information on Anna. Francesco and Caterina went on to have 3 more children. Filomena (1877), my great grandmother, son Luigi (1880) and Umberto (1890)

Umberto, the youngest child, was born 1890 in San Gregorio, Casterta, Italy. I have found very little information on Umberto other than a passenger manifest for him and marriage record.  He was traveling with his parents, Francesco and Caterina, destination Rhode Island to his brother Vincenzo. The record below is 

Name Umberto Delellis
Arrival Date 30 Apr 1904
Birth Date abt 1890
Age 14
Gender Male
Ethnicity/ Nationality Italian (South)
Port of Departure Napoli
Port of Arrival New York, New York
Ship Name Citta Di Genova
Search Ship Database Citta Di Genova
Umberto Delellis – Apr 1904 – New York, New York Napoli Napoli – Male – Citta Di Genova

I know so little about the DeLellis family. Hopefully with the few family connection’s I have made, together we can piece together our branches. I have sent away for a marriage certificate for Umberto. I will update when the record is received. The record below was also found on This was an important record since I had located two men named Umberto born in the same year. Umberto #2 was the son of Alfonso DeLellis.

Umberto DeLellis

Name Umberto De Lellis
Event Type Marriage
Event Date 02 Apr 1911
Event Place Manhattan, New York, New York, United States
Event Place (Original) Manhattan, New York
Gender Male
Age 21
Marital Status Single
Race White
Birth Year (Estimated) 1890
Birthplace Italy
Father’s Name Francesco
Mother’s Name Caterina Lofejjo
Spouse’s Name Michelina Mastangelo
Spouse’s Gender Female
Spouse’s Age 27
Spouse’s Marital Status Single
Spouse’s Race White
Spouse’s Birth Year (Estimated) 1884
Spouse’s Birthplace Itlay
Spouse’s Father’s Name Salvatore
Spouse’s Mother’s Name Nicolina Leggiers

By 1910 there were 8 DeLellis families living in Johnston, Rhode Island. They were all connected but exactly how I am not sure yet.

Living at 536 Union Ave. was Giovanni DeLellis (1848), laborer, his wife Anna (1855), son Giovanni Jr (1886) working as a clerk, daughter Maria (1882) working as a spooler in worsted mill. Also living with them was there married daughter Carmela aka Minnie (1890) husband Angelo Dibiase (1887), tailor, daughter Louisa (1908) and son Ettore (1910)

Also on Union Ave at 503 was Vincenzo DeLellis (1865), millsman,  his wife Carmela(1867) their children Maria (1892), Francesco (1896), Benedetto (1898), Anna (1902), Vingenza ( 1907)

Living next door at 504 Union Ave was Luigi DeLellis (1880)(Vincenzo’s brother), cobbler, wife Annuziata (1878), children Antonetta (1903), Maria (1905), and a son (9/12)

At 11 What Cheer Ave was Tommas DeLellis (1858) florist,  wife Maria (1861) children Emilia (1902) Alfredo (1904) Louisa ( 1906) and two stepdaughters.

Domiano DeLellis  (1873), barber,  was living at 161 Knight St with his wife Antonia (1867) daughters Annie (1901) Margarita (1907) son Luicei (1905) son Sinefore (1908 – 1909) Living with them was his mother-in-law Maria Bartolomingi and brother-in-law Joseph

Alessandro DeLellis (1877), filler in fuse shop, lived at 319 Pocasset Ave with his wife Maria (1878), children Francesca (1908), Giovanni (1910 – 1911), son Alberto (1905 – 1906) Living with them was his father-in-law Giuseppe Piacitelli (widow) and his sister-in-law Asunta, candy maker.

With an address change from Vanner to Simmonsville Rd  Giocabbe DeLellis (1856), day laborer and wife Raffaela (1862) were living in Johnston as early as 1900 along with Giuseppe and Vincenzo. They had 1 confirmed son named Peitro (1890) Living next door to Giocabbe and Raffaela in 1900 was Nicola DeLellis (1840) day laborer, and his wife Mary (1854)

These early residents set the stage for our families beginning here in the United States.





Vincenzo DeLellis: husband of Maria Carmella Iannetti

The oldest and only known child of Francesco and his first wife Anna ( LNU) DeLellis was son Vincenzo DeLellis. Records for Vincenzo seem to be spotty with few documents found but I was able to form  a reasonable time line for him from the little I do have.

Born about 1863 in San Gregorio, Casterta, Italy, Vincenzo arrived sometime in 1885 according to the 1900c, this would have made him about 22 years old. I have not been able to find an immigration record for him.

*A possible first record for Vincenzo that I did find was the 1890 birth record for his first child, a daughter, Philomena. This is an interesting record in that all the names seem to have been misspelled. Carmella as Carmena has a 2nd name looking like Yonet (?) and Vincenzo’s occupation was stone cutter, an occupation I never saw reference to again. I have looked at this record numerous times and have debated if this is truly the family. Following the trail of the birth date March 31, 1890 and of the known information from census to marriage to her death record, I have concluded this is most likely a correct record.  The birthdate on the death record corresponds with the birth record.

Birth Record 

31297_212206-00692DetailDelaware Public Archives; Dover, Delaware; Collection Number: Birth Records – 39; Roll Number: 39

Marriage Record

Name Pietro Nicoletti
Event Type Marriage
Event Date 06 Mar 1910
Event Place Providence, Providence, Rhode Island, United States
Gender Male
Age 20
Birth Year (Estimated) 1890
Father’s Name Francesco
Mother’s Name Maria
Spouse’s Name Filomena Palma Delellis
Spouse’s Gender Female
Spouse’s Age 19
Spouse’s Birth Year (Estimated) 1891
Spouse’s Father’s Name Vincenzo
Spouse’s Mother’s Name Maria C.
Citing this Record”Rhode Island Town Marriages Index, 1639-1916,” database, FamilySearch( : accessed 9 May 2018), Pietro Nicoletti and Filomena Palma Delellis, 06 Mar 1910; citing Providence, Providence, Rhode Island, United States, town halls, Rhode Island, and Rhode Island Historical Society, Providence; FHL microfilm 565.

Death Record

Philomena Nicoletti
SSN: 023-18-8428
Last Residence:
01510 Clinton, Worcester, Massachusetts, USA
BORN: 31 Mar 1890
Died: Dec 1966
State (Year) SSN issued: Massachusetts (Before 1951)
Source InformationTitleRhode Island, Marriage Index, Operations IncPublisher Date2000Publisher LocationProvo, UT, USA

In the 1900 census record Vincenzo was living in Rhode Island, working as a farmer.  Here again his last name has been misspelled and written as James Daily (37). James is a common nick name for Vincenzo. He was married to Maria Carmella, recorded as Malley born abt 1865 (35). It stated they had been married for 15 years. If the year of immigration is accurate, they had just married prior to Vincenzo leaving Italy, with Maria following about 2 years later.  I do not have information for her parents nor have I found an immigration record for her. The census also tells us that he owned his home at 27 Peck Hill Rd, Providence, he could read, write and spoke English. Maria did not speak English nor could she read and write.

A search on google earth for the address 27 Peck Hill Road found this house. While the setting was most likely the same this house looks relatively new, new roof, but perhaps the larger part was an addition to the existing smaller structure with the chimney? Could that be an original chimney? I like to imagine so but I have no idea.


In this 1900c the family consisted of 5 children and (1 deceased) From the children and their birth states I was able to track Vincenzo’s early beginnings. It appears after arriving he started out close to Delaware since his first child was born in Delaware 1890, by 1891 he had moved down to Philadelphia, PA. By 1894 he had moved his growing family back to Delaware and by 1896 they had moved to Rhode Island where they would remain.

At home at 27 Peck Hill Road address, was first child Philomena/Mamie (10) born March 1890, Del., followed by Mary (8) Dec. 1891, Phil. PA, Tomaso/Tommy (6) Apr. 1894, Del., Marcus Francesco/Frank(4)  Apr., 1896, R.I., Benedetto/Benjamin (2) Mar. 1898, R.I., Annie (3/12)  Mar. 1900, R.I.. A few years later in 1904 daughter Clara A. was born, living a short time, passing away in 1905.

By 1910 the family had moved to 503 Union Ave, Providence, R.I.. Vincenzo was no longer farming  but working as a millsman/business. Maria, recorded Carmella on this census was working as a spinner in a worsted mill.  This census also says Vincenzo had his papers for naturalizing. I am still at a loss for finding immigration or naturalization records for him.

There is much information on historical society sites for Johnston and surrounding areas on the topic of worsted and woolen mills which is actually fascinating. Perhaps demanding a much deeper look and its own blog page. Simply put worsted mills are using smooth long fibers, fibers that have been carded to make the fibers smooth. Woolen mills use shorter fibers to create cloth. This is the hairier itchier wooled fabrics you are familiar with. 





By 1910 daughter Philomena/Mamie (20) was married to Peter Nicoletti (20), living in Worcester, MA with his parents. Peter worked as a moulder in a foundry and Mamie was a folder in an envelope shop. Still at home with Vincenzo and Maria was Maria (18), Marco Francesco/Frank (14), Benedetto/Benjamin (12), Anna (8) and now Vincenza (3). Tommy was no longer listed. He would have been 16. I have had no luck finding a death record or a record to match his birth date.  A year later in 1911 daughter Maria T. would join the family only to pass away in the same year.

Living next door to Vincenzo and his family in 1910,  was his brother Luigi DeLellis (30) who had arrived in 1902. He was living at 504 Union Ave. Luigi was renting the home and with him was his wife Nunziatina/Annunziata (32) Italy, daughter Antonetta (7) Italy, Marica (5) R.I. and a son (9/12) R.I.. His profession was cobbler in shoemakers shop although the census indicates Luigi was out of work and had been for past 24 months.  Living with them was boarder Giuseppe Posidorio (36), cobbler in his own shop. I wonder if Luigi had worked for him?

Also living in area were other DeLellis  families. From the city directories for 1898 Providence/Johnston I found living there: Giovanni at 34 Minerva; Pietro and Tomaso  living at 44 Ethan. All three occupations were listed as laborer. By the 1904 directory Alessandro had joined them and was living with Giovanni  at 512 Union Ave, Giuseppe was at 24 Ridge and Tomaso was at 34 What Cheer Rd – where he would remain until his passing and his home then would pass on to his son Thomas.

Not much more is known about Vincenzo and his family between 1910 and 1915.

Daughter Maria married Attilio Langellotti on April 26, 1914. (name changed to Langelo) He was the son of Antonio Langellotti and Anna M. Fattore. Vincenzo’s sister Filomena – my great grandmother, would go on to marry Giuseppe Langellotti. My best guess at this time is that Attilio was a nephew to Giuseppe. The father of Giuseppe Langellotti was a Vincenzo Langellotti, his father was Gabriele Langellotti, his wife was Teresa DeLellis – this is taking us back to the late 1700’s – I mention this only to show the interconnectedness with these two families – so many of these names  intersect, Loffreda, D’Onofrio, Fattore, Ferritto – I have seen them repeating and connecting through our DeLellis/Langellotti clan as well into our Civitano branches.

Vincenzo DeLellis died on January 30th, 1915 

Rhode Island Deaths and Burials
Name Vincenzo De Lellis
Gender Male
Death Date 30 Jan 1915
Death Place Providence, Providence, Rhode Island
Age 52
Birth Date 1863
Marital Status Married
Spouse’s Name Carmela
Father’s Name Francisco Dilillis
Mother’s Name  

Anna Dillis

Citing this Record “Rhode Island Deaths and Burials, 1802-1950,” database, FamilySearch( : 10 March 2018), Vincenzo De Lellis, 30 Jan 1915; citing Providence, Providence, Rhode Island, reference 37; FHL microfilm 2,023,813.

 I have not been able to locate a death certificate or his place of burial for him. A search of findagrave yielded something very interesting about Johnston, R.I. and it cemeteries. There are 105 historical cemeteries, many with photographed stones, many private family plots. I will need to spend a considerable amount of time to try and wade through these pages.

Not long after and on the 1915  census (no month indicated) Vincenzo’s wife Maria (50) was living with her son Frank (19) listed as head, son Benjamin (17), and daughters Anna (13) and Jennie (8). The only one working was Frank with his profession listed as ‘second hand, woolen mill’. The home was at 238 Sterling Ave.

 Still at the Sterling Ave. address in 1920 Maria (54) widow, was living with daughter’s Anna (17) and Vincenza (13). The only one working was Anna, as a spinner in woolen mill. The census also notes that the home on Sterling was owned and not rented. Both son’s Frank and Benjamin were on their own. Looking at city directories I was able to track Maria up until 1939 where she remained at the 238 Sterling Ave. address.


Maria Caronela DeLellis died on January 1, 1940

Rhode Island Deaths and Burials
Name Maria Caronela Delellis
Gender Female
Death Date 01 Jan 1940
Death Place Providence, Rhode Island
Age 72
Birth Date 1868
Marital Status Married
Spouse’s Name Vincenzo Delellis
Father’s Name Jannetti
Mother’s Name Marianna
Citing this Record”Rhode Island Deaths and Burials, 1802-1950,” database, FamilySearch( : 10 March 2018), Maria Caronela Delellis, 01 Jan 1940; citing Providence, Rhode Island, reference 1; FHL microfilm 1,955,420.



From Wikipedia I found an interesting fact about the town. In 2000, 46.7% of Johnston residents identified themselves as being of Italian heritage. This was the highest percentage of Italian Americans of any municipality in the country.[10] Wikipedia




Francesco Saverio DeLellis of San Gregorio Matese, Caserta, Italy transplanted to Johnston, Rhode Island

A quick update for those who have been asking. I did hear back from my new DNA matched 2nd cousin 1x removed. His name is Mark. It’s been very exciting  sharing a few photo’s and getting acquainted with each other. His grandfather Luigi DeLellis was a brother to my great grandmother Filomena Langellotti DeLellis.

Our MRCA (most recent common ancestor) was Mark’s great grandfather and my 2x great grandfather Francesco Saverio DeLellis (b. 1828)  San Gregorio, Cascerta, Compania, Italy. Francesco was the son of Luigi DeLellis and Marianna D’Amico. I have no other information on them other than they were living in San Gregorio at the time of their son Francesco’s birth.

Francesco married Caterina Loffredo (b.1853) on May 15, 1872, also from San Gregorio, Italy. Caterina was the daughter of Onorato Loffredo and Maria Maddalena D’Amico 

Notice that both mother’s were D’Amico’s. I am guessing that this was a cousin marriage between Francesco and Caterina. Marianna and Maria were most likely sisters, but I have no documents to prove that at this time.

Marriage Certificate for Francesco and Caterina 

Marriage Certificate - Francesco Saverio .jpg

Marriage Certificate - Francesco Saverio -2.jpgMarriage Certificate - Francesco Saverio -3

The marriage certificate states that Francesco was the widower of a woman named Anna DeLellis. This is consistent and supported by the document seen below that I found on  It is a death record for Francesco’s 1st son Vincenzo, who was the child of his 1st wife Anna.

Rhode Island Deaths and Burials from
Name Vincenzo De Lellis
Gender Male
Death Date 30 Jan 1915
Death Place Providence, Providence, Rhode Island
Age 52
Birth Date 1863
Marital Status Married
Spouse’s Name Carmela
Father’s Name Francisco Dilillis
Mother’s Name Anna Dillis

There is quite an age gap between Francesco and Caterina. He was 44 and Caterina 19 when they married. Caterina became mother to Vincenzo, 10 years her jr and would go on to have three children with Francesco. Filomena (b. 1887) my great grandmother,  Luigi (b. 1880) and Umberto (1890).

The first of their sons to immigrate was Luigi in 1902, followed by Vincenzo in 1904, and then father Francesco along with Caterina with their son Umberto arrived after Vincenzo in 1904. Filomena came two years later in 1906. According to my Uncle Joe she traveled through Argentina and then entered the US that way. I have been unable to find an immigration record for either Filomena or for Luigi. Before I move on to the children in my next post I want to talk about their father Francesco, and the very little information I have been able to find on him.

At the age of of 76, Francesco left his his homeland aboard the Citta Di Genova, out of the Port of Napoli on April 11, 1904, arriving in New York Harbor on April 30. Traveling with him was his wife Caterina (52) and youngest son Umberto (14).

SS Città di Genova

Port of Naples 1834 – 1891 (wikipedia) not 1904 but very close to what the port must have looked like when our ancestors set sail


Francesco’s immigration record yielded a wealth of information to understand their passage to their new life here in America. They were traveling with $5 between them and heading to their son Vincenzo on Mission Ave, Providence, Rhode Island. Detained when arrived; I was not able to make out everything noted but the word “senility and Dwarf” was clearly written for Francesco. The word “good” was recorded for Caterina and Umberto. Francesco and Umberto’s profession was also noted as laborer but I wonder how much Francesco was really able to do anymore. They certainly came with very little money, so I imagine life was extremely tough, if not unbearable for them back in San Gregorio.

Passenger Manifest for Francesco, Caterina and Umberto

NYT715_452-0070Citation Information Detail Year: 1904; Arrival: New York, New York; MicrofilSerial:T715, 1897-1957; Microfilm Roll: Roll 0452; Line: 16; Page Number: 32  Title New York Passenger Lists, 1820-1957 Author

At the time that they immigrated Luigi and Vincenzo were already here establishing their new lives for the family. Vincenzo was married with 6 children. He had already been here for 15 years and was working as a farmer. More on him in a later post. Luigi was also here and living on Union Ave  (Providence, R.I.) He too was married and with 3 children to support as a cobbler, having arrived just two years prior.  (more on Luigi in a later post)

Francesco would live another four years before passing away in Johnston, Providence, Rhode Island on the 28th of March 1908. I have been unable to locate where he is buried. Correspondence with the Johnston Historical Society a few years ago, yielded no record or information found on a burial for Francesco.

A warm sincere thank you to Mark for finding and sending this photo to me. It is absolutely amazing. The more I look at it the more I am wondering if it is a painting portrait and not a photograph. Could it be a colorized photo? Any thoughts on this? Turning to the immigration record for Francesco we had one clue, that he was a dwarf. This man appears to be extremely short in stature. Whether he was truly a dwarf or just a very short man – I believe this is Francesco DeLellis.

FrancescoDeLellis.jpgPhoto courtesy of Mark DeLellis 

After the death of Francesco, his wife Caterina would go on to live another 10 years. As I was taking a look at some of the details about her, something else jumped out at me. Caterina had a sister, and her name was Anna (b. abt 1856) Could this have been Francesco’s first wife and mother of Vincenzo? It doesn’t seem possible that it could be since the ages of birth for Anna and Vincenzo is only 7 years apart. It is possible that the birth years are wrong and it was an extremely common practice in that time frame. But with nothing really to go on,  it’s just a thought.

Caterina, having lost her husband, relocated to New York to the Bronx to be by her daughter Filomena, her husand Giuseppe Langelotti and family. I located Filomena  in the 1910c living at 290 East 149th St. but there was no mention of Caterina. By 1915 Caterina was living next Filomena at 283 East 149th St., where she and her family  would remain through the 1920’s.

1915 New York Census 

32848_B093989-00335.jpgCitation Information Detail New York State Archives; Albany, New York; State Population Census Schedules, 1915; Election District: 02; Assembly District: 33; City: New York; County: Bronx; Page: 43

Caterina would live three more years passing away on February 15, 1918. She was buried at St. Raymond Cemetery on February 19, 1918.

Death Certificate for Caterina DeLellis 





My knowledge of the DeLellis branch of my family is very limited and I am have been very excited to begin researching them. I have made a few contacts over the the years with distant cousin’s. My hope is together we can begin to put together a great picture of this branch. My next few posts will be to honor those families who settled in Rhode Island and dug their heels deep in to the soil there.




Langellotti, De Lellis, Loffreda, Ferritto, Di Amico from San Gregorio, Casterta, Compania, Italy

I have written quite a bit about the Civitano family from the town of Grumo Appula, Bari, Italy, but very little about the side of the family from San Gregorio, Caserta, Compania, Italy.

 San Gregorio Matese is located in the Province of Caserta, in the region of Compania.
It is located in the Regional park of the Matese. The name of the town comes from an ancient Benedictine church dedicated to St. Gregorio. As of 2016 there were 988 residents  in San Gregorio. I was so surprised to find the names listed on a chart from the site below for San Gregorio.

The most common five family names

There are in San Gregorio Matese Surname
77.50 De Lellis
45.00 Fattore
35.00 Boiano
32.50 Mezzullo
30.00 Loffreda

I had been thinking about this side of the family for some time and felt I wanted to change tracks for a while. In fact, I had actually started this post and had something very odd, no coincidental, no perfectly perfect to confirm I am on the right path with my genealogy research at this time. On ancestry – I had a message yesterday that said “Luigi De Lellis was my grandfather”  nothing more. I immediately wrote back and am hoping to open a dialog with this person.

Luigi De Lellis was my great grandmother’s brother. A 3/4 cousin DNA match led this person to me. They are a new member on ancestry as of Feb 2018, they must have just tested which linked him to me.

My father’s mother was Catherine Langellotti (1912 N.Y)  one of seven children born to Giuseppe Langellotti (1876) and Filomena De Lellis (1877)  both from San Gregorio, both who would make there way to America to begin a new life here with their family.

Welcome to San Gregorio, Caserta, Compania, Italy. I took a google earth trip around the town and decided it would be fun to share a few pictures in this first post.  The town, set into a beautiful mountain side, is surrounded by a few narrow winding entrance and exit roads that weave their way into the small city center. From those few roads into the main town there appears to be very narrow walking alley ways to get from one strada to another. Set into the country side, leading to and from, are individual small family homesteads with family vineyards and gardens. The area itself does not appear to be affluent by any stretch of our idea of wealth; but simple, comfortably existing and content. The hard past lives of our ancestors continue to haunt this quiet remote town.





















Filomena Phyllis Tanzillo

It is always difficult to write a post about the passing of a family member. Today is no exception.

Filomena Phyllis Tanzillo – Muller (1924) passed away 16 March, 2018.

Phyllis, known as Mena to those who loved her, was the daughter of Frank Tanzillo   (1895 – 1966) and Erminia Langellotti (1901 -1932).

Phyliss was named after her grandmother Filomena DeLellis – Langellotti. 

Her grandparents Filomena (1878) was born  in San Gregorio, Caserta, Campania. She  married Giuseppe (Joseph) Langellotti (1876) also from San Gregorio, (this is correction on the wrong birth place place first posted for Giuseppe)  on June 9, 1900 in San Gregorio. In 1904 Giuseppe immigrated to the U.S. settling in New York. Soon to follow was his wife Filomena along with daughter Erminia and son Vincenzo James. Giuseppe and Filomena went on to have 5 more children born here in New York.

Phyllis’s mother, Erminia (Emily) was sister to my grandmother Catherine (Kate) Langellotti – Civitano. Their families were intertwined and connected through so much history, shared family living spaces, laughter and tears. It is rich in memories for those that remain.

Phyllis was married on September 10, 1949 to Frederick Muller who preceded her in death along with her sister Angelina Lucy (2004) and brother Bernard (2016)

Filomena Phyllis Tanzillo will be laid at rest at St Raymond’s Cemetery, Bronx, along with many other members of the family, including her parents.

I never had the opportunity to meet Mena or her family, in fact I have not had the opportunity to meet any members of the Langellotti side of my family. But as their stories  were shared with me, names repeated, histories recorded; as with most stories, they begin to take on a life of their own, memories of those ‘who knew’ become memories for me ‘who didn’t know.’

In honor of

Filomena Phyllis Tanzillo – Muller

Forever loved by those who remember




The Children of Vito Luigi Civitano and Isabella Elisabetta D’Amico

It has been difficult for me to decide in what direction I wanted to continue. There is just so many and so much to write about with our Civitano family. I have decided to go back to Vito Luigi Civitano (1803 – 1836) and Isabella Elisabetta D’Amico (1804 – 1874) (my 3x great grandparents) They were the parents of Francesco Civitano (1834 – 1879) the stage coach robber who I have written about in great detail. I have not however written anything about the other children of Vito Luigi and Isabella.

Our Civitano family was a huge established family of Grumo Appula with so many surnames crisscrossing and firsts names repeating, that it is almost impossible to keep track or make sense of each family branch. With that said I’d like to introduce you to the siblings of my 2x great grandfather Francesco, thankfully there are only 4.

Vito Luigi and Isabella were the parents of Rosa, Rosa, Grazia and Francesco. Isabella would have 1 more child, a son named Rocco with her 2nd husband after the passing of Vito Luigi.

Vito Luigi and Isabella’s first born was Rosa Civitano, named after her father Vincenzo’s mother Rosa Spano. Rosa was born Feb 20, 1827. Her sweet little life was short lived.  She passed away 7 days later on Feb 27.

Birth Certificate Rosa Civitano

Birth Certificate - Rosa Civitano (1827) p.1

Birth Certificate - Rosa Civitano (1827) p.2

Birth Certificate - Rosa Civitano (1827) p.3

Death Certificate

Death Certificate - Rosa Civitano (1827) p.1

Death Certificate - Rosa Civitano (1827) p.2

A year later on March 9, 1828  Isabella and Vito welcomed Rosa #2.  She was baptized on the same day at the Parroco (parsonage) of the Church of MonteVerde.

Birth Certificate Rosa Civitano

Birth Certificate - Rosa Civitano (1828) p.1

Birth Certificate - Rosa Civitano (1828) p.2

Birth Certificate - Rosa Civitano (1828) p.3

Church of MonteVerde Grumo Appula, 97 Via MonteVerde


Side view of building with parsonage entrance behind tree.



Sister Grazia was next, born on January 20th, 1932 and was baptized 2 days later on January 22nd at the Parroco of Grumo. Grazia was named after Isabella’s mother Grazia Priore – D’Amico (1785 – 1848 of Grumo)

Birth Certificate Grazia Civitano

Birth Certificate - Grazia Civitano p.1

Birth Certificate - Grazia Civitano p.2

Birth Certificate - Grazia Civitano p.3


My 2x great grandfather Francesco was born next  on April 23, 1834.  (I have written extensively in previous a post on the life and family of Francesco)

Tragedy would strike again 2 years later in 1836 when Isabella’s (30) husband Vito Luigi passed away on April 24th at the age of 33. His death left Isabella a widow with 3 small children ages 10, 6, and 2.

On August 5, 1837, one year later, Isabella married Vincenzo Guaccero also from Grumo Apulla. He was the son of Rocco Guaccero and Carmela Cavalluzzi. I do not have information at this time to confirm where they were from specifically but, Vincenzo was born in Grumo.

Marriage Certificate for Isabella and Vincenzo Guaccero 




On July 6, 1838 son Rocco Guaccero, 1/2 brother to Rosa, Grazia and Francesco, was born. Rocco is the only known child of Isabella and Vincenzo.

Birth Certificate Rocco Guaccero

Birth Certificate - Rocco Guaccero p.1

Birth Certificate - Rocco Guaccero p.2

Birth Certificate - Rocco Guaccero p.3

Death Certificate Rocco Guaccero

Death Certificate - Rocco Guaccero p.1

Death Certificate - Rocco Guaccero p.2

Rocco’s life was short lived, passing at the age of 20. Thinking about the lose of child no matter the age I took a look at mother Isabella’s life in terms of lose.

Isabella married at age 18 and at 23 she lost her first baby Rosa. By age 32 she lost her husband Vito Luigi, followed by her father at age 41, then her mother at 44, her son Rocco at 54 years of age followed by daughter Grazia at 63. Isabella would live another 10 years passing away at age 70. Her 2nd husband Vincenzo would pass 3 years after her.

Isabella was the oldest child/daughter of 9 children born to her parents Pietro and Grazia, 3 children who did not survive to adulthood and the rest who all out lived her.

Francesco’s sister Rosa married Giuseppe Peragina April 16, 1849 in Grumo Appula. His occupation was a Contadino – peasant farmer, as with most of our relatives.

Marriage Certificate Rosa and Giuseppe Peragina 

Marriage Certificate - Giuseppe

Marriage Certificate - Giuseppe -2

Marriage Certificate - Giuseppe -3

Marriage Certificate - Giuseppe -4

Grazia married Erasmo L’Aratro Rella April 25, 1853, Grumo Appula also a peasant farmer.

Marriage Certificate Grazia and Erasmo L’Aratro Rella 

Marriage Certificate - Erasmo

Marriage Certificate - Erasmo -2

Marriage Certificate - Erasmo -3

Marriage Certificate - Erasmo -4

Marriage Certificate - Erasmo -5

In my next post I will try to complete the family histories of the siblings of my 2x great grandfather Francesco Civitano.


Always a huge thank you to my cousin Peter Marino for all his endless work in gathering documents of our family.


Italian Peasants by Gustave David (French, 1824 – 1891) medium: watercolor over graphite on slightly textured, moderately thick, cream wove paper


Italian Peasant Girls at Prayer by Alexandre – Marie Guillemin (French, 1817 -1880) medium: watercolor with graphite underdrawing, white heightening and gum heightening on moderately thick, heavily textured wove paper


Italian Peasant Kneeling with Child by William – Adolphe Bouguereau (French, 1825 – 1905) medium: watercolor and graphite underdrawing with gum heightening and shell gold on cream, moderately thick, heavily textured wove paper


The families of Vincenzo James Civitano and Giuseppe Joseph Civitano: the youngest of Vito Luigi and Angelina’s children

In my last post I wrote about Rosa Civitano, the daughter of Louis (Vito Luigi) Civitano and his wife Angelina Marvulli. I would like to continue with this family and focus on their two youngest sons, Vincenzo (James) and Giuseppe (Joseph). Vincenzo would later be known as James; as was my great grandfather Vincenzo; and Giuseppe was known as Joseph.

James (Vincenzo) was born July 3, 1897 in Grumo Appula, Italy.

Birth Certificate - Vincenzo Civitano p.1

Birth Certificate - Vincenzo Civitano p.2

On Dec 30, 1909, James (13) under the name of Vincenzo boarded the ship the SS America with his mother Angelina; (traveling under her maiden name of Marvulli) along with his younger brother Joseph (10) for New York. They arrived on the 12 of January 1910. On the ship manifest under ‘family left behind’ it states – ‘nobody’. What an incredible feeling for father Louis to know the last of his family was finally arriving.



I have been unable to find any records for Louis and family in the 1910 or 1915 census records. A clue to where they were living was found in the 1918 census record for James, his home address is listed as 421 W. 26th St. Under nearest relative was his father Louis (Vito Luigi) at the same address.


One year after registering for the WWI draft James married Anna Plavcsan. His best man was Vincenzo Simone and the maid of honor was Maggie Caso. Anna (1899 – 1963) was the daughter of Thomas Plavcsan and Julianna Marva. Anna was born in Litany, Sabinov, Presovsky, Slovakia. On census records Austria or Hungry was listed. This country is wrapped up in the  Austrio-Hungarian Comprimise of 1867, Czechoslovakia, to independent Slovakia. (A quick search for the history of Slovakia will uncover its rich history)


The beautiful St Clare’s Church – Chiesa di Santa Chaira, 436 West 36th St. N.Y.C., where so many of our family married. In the last post I shared that sadly this beauty was destroyed to make way for the Lincoln Tunnel.

Marriage Certificate - VincenzoMarriage certificate of James Civitano and Anna Plavcsan

When I first saw the name of Vincenzo Simone as best man I immediately thought of Jame’s sister Rosa (from my last post) who married Domenico Simone, and his sister Julia who married Vito Simone (2 brothers, 2 sisters) I quickly assumed Vincenzo was another Simone brother. However a quick scan of cousin Peter Marino’s meticulous research on his site, I found that there was no mention of this brother with the parents. I could have very easily gone down the rabbit hole at this point, but I decided to move forward and leave this for another day. So the question remains, who is Vincenzo Simone and how is he connected to the Simone family? As for Maggie Caso as maid of honor, this was easier to identify. I believe this was Domenica know as Margaret Caso (1903, Grumo Appula) daughter of Gaetano Caso and Margaret Rita Marvulli- Caso. Rita was the sister of Angelina Marvulli James’s mother. Maggie (maid of honor was 1st cousin to James) Marriage not only ties these families of Simone, Civitano, Caso but their ancestral home town of Grumo Appula, Italy as well.


James and Anna began their married life living with Jame’s parents Louis and Angelina at 434 W. 25th St. NYC. James was a laborer in the ice business and Anna was a seamstress in a shop.  First child to arrive was son Louis (1921) and then Angelina/Antonetta (1923) and Julia (1926).

By 1930 James (32) had moved his family to 640 Thieriot Ave, Bronx. He owned the home, value listed was $8,000. He was still in the ice business. The language spoken was Italian by James and German by Anna, that must have been fun! Below is a view from google earth of where they lived. Their home was where the vacant lot is now. The small home set back on the photo is  house # 638. Across the street from them, the second photo is 641 Thieriot Ave.



Conversation’s with my Uncle Joe and my 3rd cousin Monica Gray (granddaughter of Anna and James) confirms that Anna was known as an excellent cook and is well remembered for her delicious cooking. I wonder if any recipe books have been saved by any family members. That would be fun to find.

The family remained at the 640 Thieriot Ave. home into the 1940’s. Son Thomas was born in July, 1930 shortly after the census was taken. Frank Thomas in 1935. James was still working as an ice man on his own account and son Louis’s (18) occupation was carpenter and the industry was ship building. Daughter Julia was a new worker, having worked 6 weeks in 1939. Below is Julia’s high school year book picture from

Julia Civitano 1943 Julia, 1943 Monroe High School, Bronx

Both the 1930 and 1940 census says that James naturalized but I was unable to find a record for this. I did however find a record for wife Anna *street address number should read 640


Anna CivitanoAnna Plavcsan – Civitano

Colettasweet16labeledNext to Anna are her two daughters, Julia and Lena @ Coletta Civitano’s sweet 16 party 

In the years that followed James and Anna had the opportunity to see their children marry. James had the honor seeing both of his 2 daughters marry before passing away in 1954. Angelina married Ely Corbi (1946) Julia married Thomas Eberhart (1949) Anna would see all but 1 of her children marry before she passed away. Thomas married Rose Migliaccio (1956), Louis married Anne Halloran (1957) and Frank married Geraldine Zardo (1967)


Brother Joseph (Giuseppe) arrived with his mother Anna and with brother James (Vincenzo). Joseph was the youngest of the children. He was 10 when he arrived in 1910. (Immigration above in post)

Joseph (Giuseppe) was born November 11, 1899, Grumo Appula, ItalyBirth Certificate - Giuseppe Civitano p.1

Birth Certificate - Giuseppe Civitano p.2

He too would register for the WWI draft in 1918. Listed was the W. 26th St address.


Below, Joseph  Petition For Naturalize  22nd Of April 1925. He declared his intention to naturalize on Sept. 4,  1918.


On Sept. 9, 1926 Joseph married Nancy (Annunciate) Traini, daughter of Nicola Traini and Rosa D’Aprile. Nancy was born on Sept 4, 1903, Toritto, Bari, Italy. Toritto is in the vicinity of Grumo. They were married at the Bronx Borough Hall.

Marriage Certificate - Joseph

Bronx Borough Hall


First found in the 1930 census Joseph (30) and Nancy (26) were living at 3337 Fish Ave, Bronx. They have bought this home (on the left with black fencing) valued at $12,500. Joe joins many other family members in the ice delivery business. Daughters Lillian (1927) and Rose (Rose Ann) (1930) have joined the family. * I want to make note that daughter Lillian may be a census error as Lillian was Angelina (Lena). I do not have a birth record for Lena. Another clerical error on this census has father Joseph born in N.Y. as well as both his parents, which we know for certain is not true.


The family remained in this home and by 1940 Joseph and Nancy added 2 more daughters, Judith (1931) and Louise (1937). Daughter Anne would join the family 9in 1942.  In this 1940 census Joseph’s occupation was listed timber man working on highway/unable to read the rest.


Joe Cook.jpgPhoto courtesy of Peter Marino ~ Joseph (Giuseppe) Civitano aka Joe Cook 

Nancy CivitanoPhoto courtesy of Peter Marino

Marriages that I am aware of are Angelina to Louis Grabowski (1947), Rose to  Jack Ferro (1962), Judith to Earl Michelin.

familypic6Photo Courtesy Peter Marino 

Left to Right: RoseAnn, Judy, Mom Nancy, Ann (standing) Angelina & Louise

So much of the story of Joseph (Giuseppe) and Nancy is unknown to me but is remembered and carried on in the stories passed down by their immediate families.

Today I remember the 2 sons of Louis (Vito Luigi) and Angelina Marvulli – Civitano and their wives,

Vincenzo James Civitano and Anna Plavcsan 

Civitano, VincenzoSt Raymond’s Cemetery, St John Section

Giuseppe Joseph Civitano and Annuziata Nancy Traini 

Civitano, JosephSt. Raymond’s Cemetery, S.t Peter Section


Rosa Civitano Marries Domenico Simone

My last post was in memory of my Aunt Coletta on the 7 year anniversary of her passing. I am always excited about posting because I never know what door, what lead on an ancestor might be shared or found, who might comment, what friendship might be made, what new cousin might emerge and that is exactly what happened.

Through my cousin Peter Marino, I was connected to a 3rd cousin for the first time. Her name is Rose Nappi Naef and Rose helped with identifying a picture that had her grandmother Angelina Marvulli- Civitano in the photo. We were so lucky to have this confirmation along with Peter’s grandmother Julia (also her grandmother). Rose is the daughter of Mary Simone and Carmine Nappi. It’s been a real treat for me to begin sharing and getting to know her. Prior to the new year, I had been spending some time researching and writing about the children of Vito Luigi Civitano, brother to my great grandfather Vincenzo (who was murdered in 1909). This family line has so many branches of which Rose descends. So with this new year in full swing I would like to pick up with the family of ~

Vito Luigi (Louis) (1860 – 1945) and Angelina (1859 – 1958) Louis and Angelina were the parents of 7 children: Francesco (1884) Domenico (1885) Giuditta (1888) Rosa (1890-1892) Rosa (1893) Vincenzo (1897) Giuseppe (1899) All but one child would live to adulthood and along with the whole family, would eventually immigrate to the United States. Today I would like to concentrate on their daughter Rosa, grandmother of Rose Nappi Naef.

Rosa Civitano, was born on the 27th of August, 1893, Largo San Lorenzo 1, Grumo Appula, Italy.


View of Largo San Lorenzo, Grumo Appula, where Rosa was born according to her birth certificate. I just love google earth. It truly can take you just about anywhere you want to go. I believe the corner building is where Rosa Civitano – Simone was born. Also a very big thank you goes out to Peter Marino who meticulously has waded through many records to point out the fine points for us. LargoSanLorenzo1


At the age of 15, December 8, 1908, Rosa boarded the ship The S.S. Luisiana leaving out of Naples and headed for New York to her father Vito Luigi. Traveling along with her was 21 other residents of Grumo so she was certainly not alone. Under ‘relative left behind’ was listed her mother Angelina. Rosa arrived on Dec, 24th, 1908.

SS Luisiana


NYT715_1181-0246.jpgSource InformationTitleNew York Passenger Lists,

Two years later in 1910, her mother Angelina, traveling under her maiden name of Marvulli with 2 of Rosa’s siblings arrived in time for Rosa’s marriage to Domenico Simone.

Marriage Certificate - Domenico -3

They were married at St Clare – Chiesa di Santa Chaira, New York City



St Clare – Chiesa di Santa Chaira, 436 West 36th St, held it’s first Mass in 1903, the church was later dedicated in 1907. Sadly this beauty was destroyed to make way for the Lincoln Tunnel.

Domenico Simone was born Apr 1, 1893, Via Gelso 6, Grumo Appula to Vito Rocco Simone ( 1851 -1911) and Maria Fanelli (1852 – 1914)




Via Gelso 6, Grumo Appula, Grumo Appula, where Domenico was born according to his birth certificate. The pink building is number 4, the second door was unmarked but is most likely 6, 3 was across the street. ViaGelso6

Domenico also arrived in 1908, traveling aboard the SS Nord America, leaving behind his father Vito Rocco and mother Maria. He was traveling to his brother Vito Simone, already here, living at 456 W. 29th St, NYC, married to Rosa’s sister Giuditta/Julia.


SS Nord America


NYT715_1123-0483.jpgSource InformationTitleNew York Passenger Lists,

My first hint into the family of Domenico and Rosa Simone was the WWI June, 1917 draft registration record for Domenico. Listed as Domenico Simon they are living at 432 1/2 W. 25th St. He is working as a driver helper for the Knickerbocker Ice Co. located at W. 26th St. between 10th & 11th St.

005263042_04158Source InformationTitleWorld War I Draft Registration Cards,

I was unable to find the family in the 1915 census but it is safe to assume that the family was close by to this address. In the 1920 census, listed as Dominic Semoni, they were  living at 351 W. 25th St., NYC. Next door were Rosa’s parents Vito Luigi, now Louis (60) and Angelina (60) with there son Giuseppe/Joseph (19)

Dominic (26) was still working in the ice industry, as many of our family members were at the time. Rosie (26) was at home with daughter Mary (1914), son Rocco had joined the family in 1918, and baby Louis was 1/12 (1919).

4313912-01132.jpgSource InformationTitle1920 United States Federal

By 1930 the family had relocated to the Bronx putting down roots. Dominic must have been doing very well; they had bought a home located at 538 Beach Ave. This is the home (middle home) built in 1920, (possibly with a facelift – the 539 address is across the street) The home value was $7,500. It is the area known as Clason Point. (census actually recorded the home price as $2,500 but that is most likely a recording error as all other homes on the street are in the $7000 to $10,000 range)



4661145_00622Source InformationTitle1930 United States Federal

1930 seems to be the turning point for the family. Dominick Simone (39) was working on his own as an ice dealer with his own route. His first papers had been submitted to become a citizen. This census tells us as well that he had not attended school and could neither read or write and the language spoken was Italian. Rosa (34) had not attended school either but she could read and write, language too was Italian but I suspect they both could speak English. Mary (16), Rocco (12), Louis (10), were joined by sister Angelina (7, born 1923) Vito (1/12, born 1930), nothing was listed for school or work for the children. We do know that Rosa had also given birth to a daughter, also named Angelina (1920 – 1921)

Their happiness was shattered in 1933 with the death of Rosa at age 39. Rosa passed away on Feb 7th, 1933.

Death Certificate - Rosa Civitano (1893) p.1.jpg

Death Certificate - Rosa Civitano (1893) p.2.jpg

Simone, Rose - St. Raymond's Cemetery

Rosa was put to rest at St Raymond’s Cemetery, Bronx, New York

Along with her are her children Rosa #1, Louis and Rocco

This families story does not end here. Domenico went on to marry widow Teresa Colavito – Gierdano (unsure of the spelling of this last name. Colavito is a common surname and repeated many times in our family history)


The marriage took place September 1, 1934, at Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Church, Bronx.


By 1940, the family was still living at the 538 Beach Ave, Bronx address. Domenico was no longer in the ice business. His occupation was listed as laborer, W.P.A. projects. The W.P.A. was the Works Projects Administration, the largest of the ‘New Deal’ agency. This was created under Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1935 to put the unemployed to work. I was so happy to learn that, possibly unemployed at some point he was working and they had not lost their home. m-t0627-02486-00524.jpgSource InformationTitle1940 United States Federal

Teresa preceded Domenico in death passing in 1959 and Dominick in 1963.

Simone, Dominick




In Memory of Nicoletta Marie Civitano

Today, January 7 marks the 7 year anniversary of the passing of

Nicoletta Marie Civitano

November 27, 1930 ~ January 7, 2011

In honor and memory I would like to dedicate this first post of 2018 to her  

Nicoletta, known more affectionately as Coletta, was the first child of Frank Civitano and Catherine Langelotti. Born in the Bronx, she was sister to Vincent and Joseph, sister-in-law to MaryAnn, mother to Karen Oliveri, aunt to Frank, Vincent (may he rest in peace), Joseph and myself. My memories are brief as I only knew her for a short time but those memories are like brilliant primary colors, intense and vibrant. To me she will always be red velvet draped in gold lame’. Cut crystals by a window streaming rainbow’s around a room. Coletta is fun wrapped in laughter. She is determined and driven, fiercely protective, spontaneous, creative, crafty and opinionated. She ‘is’ because she ‘was’ and will always be a part of my life. On occasion a situation will present itself during my day and automatically my mind then mouth will whisper ‘in honor of Aunt Coletta’ as her imprint on my life is ever present. Over the course of the few years prior to her passing, then onward, I have been so blessed to have family who graciously opened their hearts and shared their stories, my story our story.  Today in her honor  I would like to share Coletta Marie Civitano with you


All of the photo’s posted are courtesy of her daughter Karen Oliveri, my brother Frank Civitano, who opened their photo albums to provide this intimate  glimpse into her life. To my Uncle Joseph who has spent countless hours going over photo’s and sharing story after story with me and to Peter Marino and his grandmother Julia Bianca for help in identifying people for me ~ I say thank you, this post could not have been done with out you.

Frank&Catherine2Frank, Catherine, Coletta and baby doll.


Coletta&Vincent2Abt. 1935 Coletta with my dad Vincent


Colettaconfirmation3May 1938 ~ Confirmation ~ Blessed Sacrament Church





1940 Easter Wedding of Arthur Langellotti and Teresa Venrose. Coletta (10) was the adorable flower girl for her Uncle. Maid of Honor was Arthur’s sister Rita Langellotti and best man my grandfather Frank.



Abt. 1943 Grammar/Middle School Graduation Party

ColettapartyfamilyIn front row: father Frank Civitano, Coletta, unknown woman in dark dress                                                Back row: *Angelina Civitano, partial woman unknown, Catherine Civitano, Sonia, behind her standing is her husband Edward Piacente & their daughter Anne.

*I need to stop here and mention the image of Angelina Marvulli Civitano, wife of Vito Luigi Civitano. This is the first and only picture that has surfaced with her image so far. It was identified by Julia Civitano Bianca (Angelina’s granddaughter), my Uncle Joe, along with the help of a granddaughter of Rosa Civitano Simone, Rose Nappi, contacted by  Peter Marino.


1946 Sweet 16 Birthday Party  

Colettasweet16Front row: Frank C., Coletta, Catherine C.                                                                                          Back row: James (Vincent) Langellotti (Catherine’s brother), my father Vincent C., Rita Langellotti (Catherine and Jim’s sister) Julia (Frank’s sister) and husband Nick Forese

Sweet 16 Party Guests 

Colettasweet16labeledThis wonderful photo was highlighted with the names by Peter Marino. Do you recognize a family member?



Colettapartyfriends2Maybe a school dance? Coletta is on far right 



Coletta attended Jane Addam’s Vocational High School along with cousin and friend Julia Civitano Bianca. She graduated in 1948.


ColettaCarPinup2I just love this picture shared with me by her daughter Karen.




In 1950 Coletta married Joseph Palladino, it was a brief marriage that was soon annulled. However this photo below with Joseph P. and Coletta’s youngest brother, my Uncle Joe, was just to precious not to post.



In 1956 Coletta entered a new and exciting period in her life. She married Jack Oliveri and would welcome their daughter, Karen Oliveri in 1963






Coletta, Jack & Karen


But Coletta’s story can not stop there nor would it be complete if I did not fast forward to  early 2000’s when I first met my Aunt. I had just begun doing genealogy. After years of searching for my birth family research had become ingrained in my being. Here we are below looking at the first draft I had done of our family tree. I was welcomed into her home and the family with a massive ‘Italian’ buffet spread, a very intimate and exciting glimpse into the Italian culture overflowing in food, drink and family.



Life had moved forward and on for Coletta. She had reconnected with the love of her life Joseph A. Puglia, who would precede her in death. I will end this post with love overflowing in the smiles that follow.