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Laratta & Prato of Papanice, Italy
Important Note: Although the index to this website remains online, the website was retired in October of 2013. I'd like to re-direct you to my blog, PDP's Roots & Branches, where I continue to write about the family histories and stories of my websites. You may also be interested in my blog post, Farewell to Websites, I'm Blogging Only. - pdp
These records were compiled by Patricia Davidson-Peters, the great-great granddaughter of Marziale and Teresa of Papanice, whose son Armando married Eleanora (Rossomanno) and emigrated to America settling in St. Louis, Missouri.

Known descendants of Marziale and Teresa reside in Italy, Canada - and in the states of Arizona, California, Missouri, Nevada, North Carolina and Maryland.

The story of my family has been told to me by Antonia who still resides in Italy and told to me the story of my great grandfather Armando, who was the brother of her grandmother.

It begins like this ...

"They loved each other and before leaving for America, Armando asked his sister Antonia (grandmother of narrator) for one hundred liras. Since she had no money, she went to ask it to her daughter's godfather, offering him her little gold in pledge. He gave her the money without taking the gold, but with the promise Armando would send money back once he was in America.

Armando left and a year after he sent his sister five hundred liras and the godfather one hundred liras, coffee and sugar to thank him.

Too many years later, a friend from America arrived and Antonia asked him news. He told her Armando wore new and clean shirts now and he didn't change the collars to the only shirt as they used to do in Italy because they were very poor. Probably he meant Armando couldn't afford the journey since he spent his money to live as Americans did.

In that same month Armando arrived and the first person he met was my mother while sitting in front of the weaving loom. She didn't know him and when he asked her why she had no shoes she readily answered she had shoes but didn't put them on while weaving, and she added her family needed nothing since her uncle Armando sent them money from America while her sister Annina sewed dresses for others.

Just then a relative came downstairs and gave Armando a warm welcome so that the mother realized she had refused to kiss her uncle because she hadn't recognized him. Everybody in the little town knew about Armando's arrival and when Antonia came, they embraced and cried. They stood like that for two hours then she said to him: 'You shall not go away any more.'

He met his wife Eleanora Rossomanno and Antonia was sure Armando would have lived in Italy forever but when Armando's first son Marzialo Pantaleone was four years of age, Armando asked his sister to follow him with her two daughters, Annina and Agata to America. She refused and he told her they would have to meet in the next world."

Armando never forgot his sister and when he died in 1937, his wife went on sending something to his niece Annina who was not married and some dresses for Agata. But after the death of Eleanora in 1956, no one in the family wrote Italian and the letters stopped. Annina had died with the desire to meet their relatives and Antonia promised she would go to the American consulate in Rome to get news, but she never did.

Still it seems destined that the family in America and the family in Italy would meet. In the summer of 2007 Antonia's great granddaughter Adele found this website and emailed me. I can say with all honesty and much sentiment, that our family in Italy has opened their heart and home to me. Family is family. We have missed, but never forgotten the other.

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This Site Updated 06 Jun 2014
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