Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Grandpa Lanzillotto Immigrates (for the first time) in 1909

These images show Grandpa Lanzillotto - Charles Lanzillotto - when he first immigrated to NY. (We've already seen his later trip from Italy to America, when he, in 1920, returned to his hometown to get married, and then brought his wife Anna to the US.) This manifest is from 23 February 1909. (The trip had begun 9 February 1909.)

On his 1919 passport application, Grandpa Lanz had given his immigration date as 20 February 1908. I might not have even really noticed the difference of a year, had the earlier immigration shown up when I searched the indexes for them. However, for whatever reason, it did not show up in the indexes, and, of course, neither did it show up when I tried to search the ships that came in on the 20th of February, 1908.

On the first page, you see Grandpa Lanzillotto listed between the two crossed out lines. (This makes it easy to follow which line refers to him!) His name looks like it's given as Carmine Lanzillotta. His age I can't decipher at all, but he should be in the neighborhood of 15. (His birthday is 16 July 1894.) He's single, a laborer, literate, and is of the race "Southern Italian." His last permanent residence was Bitetto, Bari. His closest relative in Italy is his father, Giuseppe, from Bitetto. He's heading to NY, NY [the town so nice they named it twice.]

As you follow the record across to the next page, you see that our guidelines have disappeared, but Carmine Lanzillotta is still on line 4. He has a ticket to his final destination which he paid for himself. He has only $5 to his name, and has never been to America before. I had no idea who he was listing as his closest relative in the US until Grandma helped me figure it out. He appears to have listed his mother, "Bellone Sarano," as his US contact. As far as we know, his mother (Apollonia Serrano) was never in America, and the address here is pretty illegible. Whether he misunderstood the question or whether he lied about who was meeting him, I don't know. He's not a polygamist, nor an anarchist, nor a cripple, and he's in good mental and physical health. His height is difficult to read, but it seems like he's only 4' tall. I don't think Grandpa Lanz was tall, but I was not under the impression that he was that short. His hair is black, and his eyes are some color that begins with a "b."He has no unique identifying marks, and was born in Bitetto, Bari.

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