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Saturday, September 26, 2015

52 Ancestors Year 2 #40: Thomas Birdseye, VIntner of London

     Thomas Birdseye, my 7th Great Grandfather was baptized on 14 Dec 1684 at St. Anne and St. Agnes Church in London, England. He was the son of Thomas Birdseye, a brickmaker, and his wife Elizabeth of Hogsdon, Middlesex, England.  Thomas, the younger, is found in the London, England, Freedom of the City Admission Papers on  Oct 1711 when he was apprenticed to Avery Hobbs, Vintner. His younger brother, John, was admitted on 3 Jun 1712, apprenticed to a frame-work knitter and their younger brother, William did the same on 1 Apr 1718, also apprenticing to a frame-work knitter. The three brothers remained close as their children were baptized in the same parish of St. Botolph.

     Thomas married Elizabeth Curintine on 15 Jun 1721 at St. Botolph, Aldgate, London.  They had a daughter, Elizabeth born 1721 and a daughter Rebekah, born 1 Mar 1725 and died 17 Mar 1725. I don't have a death date for Elizabeth but on 14 May 1738 Thomas married Sarah Bowler.  They had three sons who died young, Thomas, William and Thomas, and a son John in 1745 and daughter, Sarah in 1746. Thomas wrote a will in 18 May 1751 in which he left most of his property to his wife, Sarah with money sums left to his three children. He left his daughter, Elizabeth, the belongings of her mother and instructed that after is wife's death the house should be divided between John and Sarah with Elizabeth allowed to rent her place in it.  But if John and Sarah predecease her, then the house is hers. He died not long after this will and was buried on 21 Jun 1751.  His son and daughter would've been 6 and 5 years old while his daughter Elizabeth was 30!

     One reason I find him (and his ancestors) interesting is the family name.  In America this name is chiefly famous for the frozen foods company.  That Birdseye family has a legend that it's name came about in a rather romantic way.  It goes that one of their ancestors earned the name when he saved the life of an English Queen by killing an attacking hawk by shooting it squarely through the eye. However, a more prosaic explanation is that an "eyeot" is a small island in the middle of a river which is inhabited by birds.  Thus Birdseye is a place name for someone living near one of these.  It was an early Anglo Saxon name first found in Sussex. It is often spelled "Birdsey" in the records.

Friday, September 18, 2015

52 Ancestors Year 2 #39: Giuseppe Tinetti, Chef in Monte Carlo?

      When I first started researching my family tree all that was known of my Mother's Mother's Father(Giovanni Tinetti)'s family was the name of his father, Giuseppe Tinetti, and mother, Maria Pastore.  No dates or places.  There was also a family story that he was a chef for the Grimaldi Family of Monaco.  Because there was very little online on this Italian family it took me a number of years before I started to really research it. The first thing I did was order the microfilm of births, marriages and deaths of the town in which my great grandmother, Angelina Tinetti, was born.  Angelina's birth and those of her brothers and sisters were all there, along with her parents marriage, the death of Giovanni's first wife and his mother.  Several noted that  Giovanni's father was Giuseppe Tinetti.  One even went further to note that Giuseppe's father was Martini Tinetti. And they gave a place name of San Martino. Giuseppe's birth was not in this town's records. But I had a new name (Martini) and a new place (San Martino).

     My next step was to see if the Family History Library had a microfilm of the records from San Martino.  They did! So I ordered it. Before I continue let me tell you that researching the Italian records is quite challenging at first.  The Civil records which start about 1845 are in Italian which is to be expected.  But the Italians write out the dates in the records! Where we would write 1845, for instance, Italians would write "Onethousandeighthundredfortyfive" but in Italian!  So I was grateful that I had printed out a paper on Italian numbers from Family Search. But then when you get earlier than the Civil Records you are into the Church records and these are in Latin! The tricky thing there is that they give the Latin equivalent of the first names. For instance, Joannes for Giovanni.  So I found Martini Tinetti (Martinus) and his wife Joanna(Giovanna) but couldn't find his son Giuseppe until I realized that it was "Josephus" in the records! (The hardest one like this was Luigi, in Latin it is "Aloysius" and it took me quite awhile to realize that that is the same name).(This name is Louis in English).

    So, I found his birth on 4 Jul 1789 and his marriage to Maria Magdalena Pastore on 11 Feb 1805 but then he disappeared. His son, Giovanni, was born in San Giovanni and I have found a number of sons and daughters of his but no exact birth records.  I think that I have not gotten the correct film for San Giovanni. If he went to Monaco to be a chef it would have been after the birth of Giovanni in 1825.  The family tradition says that he returned when Garibaldi was fighting to unite Italy. this would suggest before 1848.  During this time period Monaco and Torino were both part of the same country, the Kingdom of Sardinia which included Piedmont, the Southeastern part of France and Sardinia and was ruled by the House of Savoy.  So it's not far-fetched to think that he could have been employed by the Grimaldis in Monaco. Very few records are available for Monaco though so I have been unable to verify this.

    His wife, Maria, died as a widow on 21 Oct 1865 so he had died before this.  She died at her son, Giovanni's, house in Vallia, Torre Canavese. That is all I know of him so far.

     But finding San Martino was a breakthrough because there are many Tinettis in this town! There is even a street named Tinetti Street for Giacomo Tinetti.  He's not on our direct line but undoubtedly related.  I traced the line back to Pietro Tinetti born about 1650.  There are many men named Tinetti in the WWI and WW II Memorial there.  The Church in the town is breathtaking.  Also true for the one in San Giovanni. My sister and I visited there last year.  So I was very glad to have been able to discover the family connection to the towns and then to visit them myself! This post is supposed to be and a favorite place and I would now name them as among my favorite places.

Saturday, September 12, 2015

52 Ancestors Year 2 #38: Captain Samuel Brigham, Tanner of Marlborough, Mass

       Samuel Brigham was the youngest son on Thomas Brigham and Mercy Hurd, born in Cambridge, Massachusetts on 12 Jan 1652.  when he was not quite 2 years old his father died.  His mother then remarried Edmund Rice in Sudbury, Mass.  By 1683 Samuel had moved to Marlborough, Mass where he was one of the early settlers.  He erected a tannery in the town in 1700 which continued to operate until 1859!  He was admitted as a freeman in 1690, was a represent to the General Court of Massachusetts from 1697-1699 and Town Treasurer from 1699-1703.  He was a selectman in Marlborough in 1707-1710. His will shows him to have been a large landholder in the town.

     He became a Captain in Queen Anne's War (part of the French and Indian Wars).  The Iroquois Indians were hostile to the settlers.  Marlborough is described as a "frontier town" at the time.  The settlers formed a number of forts in the town for protection and he was in charge of one of them.  Four of his stepfather's sons were carried off or killed by the Indians during this time.  One doesn't think of New England, especially a town near Boston, as being the scene of this type of action!

     He married Elizabeth Howe and according to most accounts they had ten children.  However, I have a list of 18 children of theirs from Ancestry trees. Whether ten or eighteen, he had many descendants and the Brigham was prominent in the history of Marlborough.

     Samuel died 24 Jul 1713 in Marlborough.  He is buried in the Common Burying Ground and has a fairly impressive gravestone still standing.  He is the only one of the children of Thomas and Mercy who has a gravestone.

Sunday, September 6, 2015

52 Ancestors Year 2 #37: Johan Forman Carriage Maker Kristianstad 1725

          In my Almquist Family Tree there is a family of "Forman" who are of German descent.  I had traced it back to Gottlieb Forman born in Kristianstad in 1732.  According to another Family Tree on Ancestry his parents were Johan Forman and Christina Maria Weimar.  So when I had a free weekend on Arkiv Digital (the Swedish company with the best version of the Church records and many other records) I decided to see if I could find out more. I did find the birth record on 2 Octobris 1732 to "Caretmakeren" Mr. Johan Forman and "Maria Weimar Christina".  I then found their marriage record: Anno 1725, 17 May "Carethmakaren Johan Forman och jungfru Maria Wegmars" or it could be Weijmars.  Plus two other children, Antonius and Maria Magdalena.

     But what is the "Carethmakeren?"  I couldn't find it by googling it or using Google Translate.  So I emailed my 5th Cousin who I had discovered via Ancestry.  His name is Roger Olofsson and he lives in Vesterik, Sweden.  He emailed me back and told me but he also had to google it himself to find out what it meant!  It means "carriage maker".  Undoubtedly a good trade in a big city like Kristianstad!

     The Ancestry Family Tree had also said that he was born in Russia. What was a German doing being born in Russia? So I looked that up and discovered that many Germans went to Russia in the 18th and 19th Centuries to settle. He was born in 1700, though so that is earlier than most of what I was reading.  On a timeline of Russian history(scaruffi.com/politics/russians.html), though, I found this: "1652 the Czar creates a German ghetto in Moscow to house the foreign businessmen."  So quite possibly he was born in Moscow!

     I also did discover that a great many Germans came to Sweden in the 18th Century as merchants and tradesmen, particularly in Stockholm and Kristianstad.  So far that is all I know about Johan Forman and I don't know how possible it is to find his birth record in Russia, but it certainly is interesting.  There is a story in the family of a Spanish ancestor and I wonder if possibly it is really a German one that was meant!