Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Mapping my family's past

I created another Google Map. This time I located the where my relatives were living circa 1900. I was mostly able to use 1900 US Census as a reference, also used Boston City Directories, and death records.
View My family in 1900 (or thereabouts) in a larger map

We were mostly settled in one of two neighborhoods in Boston: East Boston (Irish) and North End (Italian.) I also had some family in Kansas and Nashua, NH (French-Canadian.) 

During my research I was noticing similar street names, so thought I'd map it out and see how it looked and how close they actually were. Strangely enough, what surprised me the most was finding my Italian relatives living on the same street (North Street) in the North End. The only reason it is interesting is because they were only a few houses down from each other. One family (Forti/Ledda) was from Sicily and the other (Belmonte) was from Avellino. I wonder if the people from the different regions of Italy spoke to one another or if they were territorial even in the new world? In 1900 they lived near each other, in the 1930's their grandchildren lived near each other (in Revere, MA) before they married in the 1940's.

I never would have thought about how Italians, or Irish for that matter, interacted with one another in the new world, if I didn't map my family's past. I think I'm going to have to call my grandmother to see if she remembers anything about her grandparents knowing my grandfather's family 113 years ago!


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