POINT Chapter 15 Meeting - February 3, 2001

POINTers In Person
Chapter 15
Northern New Jersey

P.O. Box 636
Totowa, New Jersey

Pursuing Our Italian Names Together

 February 3, 2001

Albert Marotta (#1018)
The Northern New Jersey chapter of POINTers in Person met on the bitterly cold morning of February 3, 2001 at the Elmwood Park Municipal Building.  Twenty people attended.

 Annita Zalenski (#39) opened the meeting by asking members whether we wanted to change the name of our group to reflect NJís connection to an Italian historical figures.  Members decided not to change the name of our chapter.  Also Annita asked if the group might be interested in sponsoring a one-day mini conference on Italian genealogy.  Since interest was shown, a committee was formed to investigate the feasibility of this conference.  Volunteers on this committee include: Sal Lagatutta (#3352), Dolores Galofaro, Susan Laurita (#4405), Marie Androski, Loretta Tito and Maryanne Graham (#3643).  The Nominating Committee was also selected and includes: Dolores and Tony Galofaro with Marie Androski.  The minutes of November 4, 2000 were amended to show the correct date of the Fifth Annual Italian Genealogy Group Seminar (Hofstra University, NY) which is scheduled for March 17, 2001.  Annita presented the treasurerís report and informed us that the chapter has 42 members.

Sue Laurita (#4405) gave a wonderful presentation on Italian Festivals, focusing on Sicily.  Among the festivals featured were:  La Festa di Santa Lucia, La Vigilia di Natale, Natale, Notte di Capo díAnno, Capo díAnno, La Festa di SantíAgata, Sagra dei Mandorli in Fiore, La Festa di San Giuseppe, Pasqua, Festa del Carretto, La Mattanza, La Festa di San Giovanni Battista, Ferragosto, Sagra Della Vendemmia and Il Giorno dei Morti.

Sue supplied background material and recipes for each feast. She recommended, The Art of Sicilian Cooking, by Anna Muffoletto and In Search of Our Ancestors:  The Companion to the PBS Series, by Megan Smolenyak.  Many members reminisced about the Italian feasts they enjoyed while growing up.

Loretta Tito gave a remarkable account of her research in Italy (Carpino, in the Province of Foggia).  She began from her motherís memories and continued first to the local cemetery and later to the town hall.  After she and her husband sparked interest in the town employees, the clerks proved very helpful.  One clerk even recognized a name that was being researched and told Loretta that he knew the person and would bring Loretta and her husband to that house.  When they arrived, Loretta was surprised that the relative who answered the door spoke English with an English accent.  This relative told Loretta that her parents found work in England and it was there that she was born.  It was later that she moved back to her hometown.

Officers met at the end of the meeting to share ideas about the future of the chapter.  Future meetings will be held on May 5, 2001, August 4, 2001, November 3, 2001 and February 2, 2002.

For details, see our website:  https://sites.rootsweb.com/~njpoint/


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