10 Years and 174 Ancestors Later

This summer I wrote about my project delving deep into the Italian Church records for the village of Cossano Canavese, Turino, Piedmonte, Italy. You can read about the Status Animarum Records here.

Yesterday, Facebook kindly sent me the memory from 10 years ago after my first foray into these records. This was a massive moment because it opened the doors to an entire branch of my family. I was floored to be able to say I knew the names of all my 2nd great grandparents.

To commemorate how far my research has evolved, here is a 7 generation chart with my grandfather, Celio Gordon Capelli (aka Celio Pietro Guiseppe Ciardonei) as the beginning of the chart. My deep roots in Cossano Canavese has led me to documentation for 174 direct ancestors and 11 generations added to my tree.

My next project is to work out which Maria Brunero born circa 1734 is mine. There are 4 possible candidates born 1733-1735. The plan is to build out the trees for all four families using the parents names to identify which set of parents (Maria’s parents) are my 6th great grandparents.

Workday Wednesday – Delivering The Mail

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.

Cossano Post Stamp
Postal Stamp from 1912.