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The Grandmothers   In the beginning...
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We asked our Grandparents early and often where they came from. We didn't always get the correct answers for town names, but we knew what country they were from. Many times that's all we knew when we began. Send letters detailing your quest to everyone in the family.

ITALIAN PHONE DIRECTORY...
Search an online Italian WHITE PAGES / PAGINE BIANCHE if you know the region or town that your family is from. Here is some help with those ITALIAN GENEALOGY and SEARCH WORDS.
Tip: cognome = last name. nome = first name. dove = where. comune = town.


LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION...
Not sure of a town name? Browse METROPOLIS WORLD(.asp) for ideas.... You can select the provincia and then explore town names. Then use an ITALIAN PHONE DIRECTORY to look up your surname in those towns. SEARCH YOUR ITALIAN SURNAME by town or region of Italy with this free online tool. Input your last name on the left side of the page in the box labeled "cognome".

Once you've assembled a list of contacts who share your surname and area of origin, you can upload, print, and mail a photo postcard of your ancestor(s) to potential relatives. Do this yourself; either by using a scanner, photo editing program, and printer OR send them a message and ancestral photo through an online service such as AMAZING MAIL POSTCARDS.

NON CAPISCE?...
Don't speak Italian? Si fa cosi'. While you're LEARNING ITALIAN, you can utilize this handy FORM LETTER in English and Italian by David Zerga to write to potential relatives. Italian ZIP/CAP CODES are online. How to ADDRESS THE ENVELOPE you're mailing to Italy and the current international postal rate can be found here.

RECORDS...
A family member in Italy forwarded our family tree request to the CHURCH/CHIESA in Italy which maintains many older records of families and events. The church secretary hand transcribed our family tree all the way back to the late 1600's. He mentioned that there are Civil Records of births, marriages, deaths, etc. available at the STATE ARCHIVES/ARCHIVO DI STATO. Some Italian CIVIL RECORDS are online thanks to the efforts of some very nice people.

It's a good idea to back up your genealogical treasures with official documents. Here are a few examples.

And finally, you can always SEARCH the web for family ties

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