When Did Your Family Arrive...and Why?

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When Did Your Family Arrive...and Why?

Postby columbia on Thu Nov 01, 2012 11:16 pm

Hopefully this will generate some good stories, especially from those whose great grandparents came through Ellis Island.

Mother's side:
1770s (I don't know any details, other than that were Scotch-Irish.)

Father's side:
Direct descendant of James Monroe. Monroe's grandfather (Royalist Captain Andrew Monroe ) came to North America, after King Charles I was beheaded. James' wife Elizabeth Kortright Monroe was the 1st cousin 2 times removed from FDR.
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Re: When Did Your Family Arrive...and Why?

Postby MRandall25 on Thu Nov 01, 2012 11:27 pm

I know my (paternal) Grandma's father came over from Zaverda, Greece around 1912 and originally lived with my great grandmother in Jackson Hole, Wyoming until they moved here. Not sure about my grandfather. He was adopted, so he didn't really have much of an idea.

On my mother's side, I know both her parents came from Germany/Austria. Her dad won a Bronze Star (I think it was Bronze, not Silver) doing "stuff" for the Allies during WWII. No one will tell us exactly what he did, though, and we'll never know since he died when I was 1.
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Re: When Did Your Family Arrive...and Why?

Postby Kaizer on Fri Nov 02, 2012 12:32 am

my dad's side came over from england in the late 1600's, and ended up in Illinois. somewhere along the line moved the clan to Seattle. no clue where my mom's side came from, but a good portion of them were natives.
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Re: When Did Your Family Arrive...and Why?

Postby Godric on Fri Nov 02, 2012 1:52 am

early 1900s for my mom's mom's side of the family (Italian immigration)... very boring compared to my mom's father coming over in the 40s as a Italian POW and his brothers and sisters.

My Dad's dad's family I think could be traced back to like the 1600s here in North America... Dunno much about my Dad's Mom's family.
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Re: When Did Your Family Arrive...and Why?

Postby legame on Fri Nov 02, 2012 2:59 am

Pop's side came from Lithuania in the late 1800's. Mom's side is Irish and Italian.
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Re: When Did Your Family Arrive...and Why?

Postby Rylan on Fri Nov 02, 2012 3:00 am

So both sides of my family were turn of the century peeps. Some good family stories though.
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Re: When Did Your Family Arrive...and Why?

Postby count2infinity on Fri Nov 02, 2012 7:36 am

I have no idea why either side came to America, but I did find out that both of my families are from Southern Germany, Western Austria and Switzerland. As a kid, I always (and still do really) found it amazing that both of my families came from such a concentrated area in Europe. I would have to go back to great and great great grandparents to have the people that came over.

My fiancee's grandparents on her father's side is much more interesting. She was from Germany, he was from Serbia. They both came here for better opportunity and one night that they were out dancing, she was on a date with some guy. He came over, asked for a dance, and one thing lead to another. She told us that the other guy never forgave her. lol
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Re: When Did Your Family Arrive...and Why?

Postby mac5155 on Fri Nov 02, 2012 8:43 am

Mother's side came over in the late 1900s early 1910s from Italy. They all settled in various parts of Connellsville which is extremely Italian still to this day.

I am not 100% sure about my dads side. They came from Germany, and I am guessing a little before then (late 1800s?, maybe 1890?)

My hometown, where my dads side all lived, was not founded until 1874. My great grandfather was the town's first fire chief, my grandfather followed, and my dad was a firefighter. 24.5 years of service, he quit 6 months shy of retirement. Politics, I guess. Most of the older firemen still respect him and my family for our years of service. I'm a member at the fireman's club for life.
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Re: When Did Your Family Arrive...and Why?

Postby ulf on Fri Nov 02, 2012 9:01 am

My mom's Dad came over in the 30s from Italy. Dad's relatives came over early 1800's from everywhere. Switzerland, Germany, Ireland, Italy... We went on to ancestry.com and looked up his side. It showed my great-great(maybe one more great?) grandpa holding a shotgun outside of the house in Indian Head that my great grandma lived in up until last weekend. It was pretty cool. She's 95 and went to a home. She actually is in great shape and doesn't need it, but she insisted because all her friends live there lol. She loves it so far.
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Re: When Did Your Family Arrive...and Why?

Postby Pavel Bure on Fri Nov 02, 2012 9:45 am

Potato famine.
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Re: When Did Your Family Arrive...and Why?

Postby newarenanow on Fri Nov 02, 2012 9:52 am

Wow. I love the lineage of people that have been in North America since the 17th and 18th centuries. And it's cool columbia is a descendant of James Monroe. Other great stories.

Mine isn't has interesting.

Dad's side from Italy in the early 1900s. Probably just for more work and a better life.

Mom from somewhere in Eastern Europe, same time period, same reasons.

My family history in the US is only a little over 100 years.

Now, my wife, her family can be traced back to the 1700s. One of her relatives did a painstaking research project a few years ago and follows one part of their family tree (her dad's side) back like 8 generations into the 1700s and has the ever growing family all in like a 100 page binder. She brings it to family reunions. It is a great read.
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Re: When Did Your Family Arrive...and Why?

Postby llipgh2 on Fri Nov 02, 2012 9:52 am

My father's family (Italian) arrived in the early 1920s. Grandfather emigrated first, then rest of the family. Looking for work.

My father was the first member of his family to be born here.

My grandmother on my mother's side (Dutch), her family emigrated in the early 1900s. Millworkers, again looking for work.

I know nothing of my maternal grandfather's family, other than he was an Italian emigrate and a florist. He left my grandmother after my mother was born and was never heard from again.
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Re: When Did Your Family Arrive...and Why?

Postby Gabe on Fri Nov 02, 2012 10:18 am

Mom's side of family:
Her mother's side came over as Pennsylvania Dutch immigrants in early 1700's. They had a massive farm outside of Holidaysburg, PA

Her father's side came over when her dad was 6 months old from England. Just poor laborers looking for a new place to work and Pittsburgh looked promising on the labor front.

Dad's side of family:

His mother's side came over in late 1800's as Scots-Irish.

His father's side came from Sweden in about 1910. (north side of Stockholm). They were skilled home builders in the Pittsburgh area.
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Re: When Did Your Family Arrive...and Why?

Postby Tico Rick on Fri Nov 02, 2012 10:30 am

My father's side: 1633, helped establish a settlement in Windsor, CT. My mom's side: her mom come over from England, married a guy whose parents were from Germany.
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Re: When Did Your Family Arrive...and Why?

Postby IrishEyes on Fri Nov 02, 2012 11:11 am

Mom's great grandparents immigrated from Germany.

As for Dad's side, they left England in the 1500's for Ireland, and then the first Irish ancestor in the states came to Philadelphia on a ship in 1756. Some time in the late 1800s, a great (however many) grandmother was kidnapped by natives, married off, and had a child to one of them. She escaped with the child, and that's where my native american blood comes from.
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Re: When Did Your Family Arrive...and Why?

Postby Tico Rick on Fri Nov 02, 2012 11:29 am

That's the stuff of movies right there, IrishEyes!
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Re: When Did Your Family Arrive...and Why?

Postby PensFanInDC on Fri Nov 02, 2012 11:36 am

Direct descendant of Alexander Hamilton. My brother looks just like a $10 bill....

100% German on my dad's side. Mother's side is German/Polish but considering Europe didn't even really have nations until the mid 19th century and the borders changed constantly for the next 100+ years it's hard to say.

I do know that my dad had an uncle who was an SS at Dachau and my mother had cousins who were interred there at the same time. Interesting family dynamic...
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Re: When Did Your Family Arrive...and Why?

Postby mac5155 on Fri Nov 02, 2012 11:47 am

PensFanInDC wrote:Direct descendant of Alexander Hamilton. My brother looks just like a $10 bill....

100% German on my dad's side. Mother's side is German/Polish but considering Europe didn't even really have nations until the mid 19th century and the borders changed constantly for the next 100+ years it's hard to say.

I do know that my dad had an uncle who was an SS at Dachau and my mother had cousins who were interred there at the same time. Interesting family dynamic...


I'll bet the holiday dinners were the best! :pop: :lol:
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Re: When Did Your Family Arrive...and Why?

Postby Sam's Drunk Dog on Fri Nov 02, 2012 12:52 pm

I don't know much about my Dad's family other than they are from somewhere near Naples, Italy and came to America sometime before WWII. He grew up in Rochester, PA.

My mom's family is from Pacentro, Italy and she was born in there. My grandfather fought in WWII in the Italian Airforce and was captured by the British in North Africa. After the war he moved to the US and got a job in a steel mill in Monaca. He was able to save up enough money to then bring over my grandmother, my Mom, and my Aunt.

My grandmother would tell of being harrassed by the Nazis during WWII. I found this on wikipedia regarding the German occupation:

After the Italian Government's surrender in September 1943, Nazi armies marched south to occupy most of Italy. The German Wehrmacht occupied the town for the next few weeks. Allied raids induced the Germans to evacuate the population of the whole town just before Christmas 1943. Thousands of the town's inhabitants were evicted from their homes and forced to endure significant hardships and deportations.


By the way, the paternal grandparents of Madonna are from Pacentro.
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Re: When Did Your Family Arrive...and Why?

Postby mac5155 on Fri Nov 02, 2012 12:56 pm

My fiancee's grandmother was born in England, she was a nurse in WWII and met her grandfather who brought her back to the states. One day we say we're going to go visit her family over there but it'd probably be uber awkward :lol:
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Re: When Did Your Family Arrive...and Why?

Postby JS© on Fri Nov 02, 2012 2:13 pm

Mom's side came over from Sicily in the early 1900s. My sister did a full scale family tree research about 5 years ago and that's about as far back as we can trace.

Dad's side is from Russia. I've heard some people say they found paperwork saying Peterburg, which would be St. Petersburg. Grandparents came over in the late 20s. Aside from them coming over, there's very little known beyond that. What makes it even harder to trace is that when they came over and became citizens, their name was misspelled. With a lot of family members still in town, there are actually two spellings of my last name: one that uses an A instead of a U in the name and the name that the majority of the family uses.

There was also a third spelling variation that my cousin found, but there was never a confirmation if they were related. It's not like my last name is Smith or Jones, so I'm guessing they would be.
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Re: When Did Your Family Arrive...and Why?

Postby the wicked child on Fri Nov 02, 2012 2:37 pm

Don't know exactly when my Grandfather came to America (he was born in Aruba), but he met my Grandmother in Germany after WWII and brought her back ti America.
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Re: When Did Your Family Arrive...and Why?

Postby tifosi77 on Fri Nov 02, 2012 2:45 pm

No idea when the German side came over, just that they were cobblers from a northern town between Bremen and Hamburg.

Irish side came over during the famine in the 1840s, by way of a ten-year layover in Montreal.
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Re: When Did Your Family Arrive...and Why?

Postby llipgh2 on Fri Nov 02, 2012 2:49 pm

I actually have relatives I've never met living in Italy. I need to get over there.
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Re: When Did Your Family Arrive...and Why?

Postby mac5155 on Fri Nov 02, 2012 2:53 pm

Surprised the number of people that came from Italy .
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