The following story was written by Martha S. Taccarino.
Wednesday, March 1, 2006 is the anniversary of my grandfather (nonno), Antonio Iaccarino’s birth. He was born in mille otto cento settantotto or 1878 so he would be 128 years old. His parents were Ferdinando and Maria D’Esposito Iaccarino. I know they also had a daughter, (figlia) Concetta, (my Zia or aunt) who was 4 years younger than my nonno.
Photo #1 - House
I have found this house because very dear friends (amici), Tonio and Carmella Romano spent hours researching old town zoning records. It seems as if the town fathers in
Photo #2 - House Numbers (Click on photo for more detail)
And here is what the door bell to the building where my grandfather lived looked like in May, 2005. You can see that it is still apartments.
Photo #3 - Door Bell
So my nonno went to sea. He signed on as a mozzo (a cabin boy). Fortunately, his seaman’s book is still in our family. The entries are handwritten in script that I can’t always read and understand. (Someday perhaps…) So far I know he was promoted, learned great skills that he would use later in life and four languages besides his native Italian. From the log I can tell that he returned to and left
Photo #4 - Departing View of Naples by Water
He did not always leave from
Photo #5 - Meta
Photo #6 - Sign (Click on photo for more detail)
From my nonno I think I have inherited my interest in other languages besides my native tongue. I do hold it against him that he did not allow Italian to be spoken in their house in
I also know that from my nonno, the spirit of travel and adventure passed directly to my father and then to me. My passport is never locked up in a safety deposit box. I like to have it near me so if the opportunity to travel arises I can just go. So yes, I have a very cooperative and loving husband who doesn’t mind if we go to
So little by little with research, the help of friends and the memories of my family I learn about my grandparents. On Wednesday or when ever you think about it, please raise a glass of wine or a mug of coffee to my nonno and nonna who had the spirit and sense of adventure to try something different and create a new life for themselves. Most Americans have ancestors that emigrated. I have been lucky enough to be able to trace mine and fill in some of the blanks. Perhaps I will be able to write again about my grandparents’ marriage and the family they raised. Until then Buon Compleanno Nonno!
That's it for
Today’s quote is an Italian proverb, author unknown.
Here today, gone tomorrow.