I was blessed to receive a book about Cossano Canavese, Italy from a genealogy friend who visited Cossano last year. My Dad’s paternal line is from this small town outside of Torino. I have had the book for six months but really have not spent much time looking at it yet. The reason why is the book is in Italian and I speak English.
I have focused this weekend on using free online translation services to translate sections I know apply to my family. (Really the whole book applies since this is a very small town and everyone is most likely related at some point)
The section I concentrated on was several pages before a photo of my great-great-grandfather, Giuseppe Siletto. The translation roughly spelled out the creation of the post office in Cossano. Before 1856, the town was dependent on the nearby town of Caravino for its mail. In 1858, a letter was sent to all mayors in the province letting them know that they needed to assign someone the job of postman and decide how often that person would go to Caravino to pick up the mail each day. The new postmen would receive 50 lire a year for their work. The Mayor of Cossano named a certain man named Siletto for the job and it started 1 January 1859. In 1912 Cossano became its own post office and was no longer dependant on the town of Caravino.
In the page before the photo of my g-g-grandfather is a stamped certificate to record a deposit of 200 lire in September 1893 by Giuseppe Siletto to carry out the functions of postal carrier.
So it turns out that my ancestors owned and operated the post office in Cossano for a very long time. From 1859-1893 a man by the same surname ran the post office. My g-g-grandfather, Giuseppe Siletto, owned and operated it from 1893-1912. His daughter, my great-grandmother Adele Siletto, was the owner from 1912 til her death in 1919. Giuseppe’s second wife, Lucia Brunero, was the postman from 1915-1925. And Lucia’s son from her first marriage, Giovanni Antonio Brunero, was the postman from 1925-1966.