POINT -- Pursuing Our Italian Names Together

POINTers in Person

Chapter 3, Northern California

Meeting Notice

DATE:   April 6, 2013


Hosted by:

Dot Denko (#5333)



1200 Grant Ave.
Novato, CA 95945
(415) 898-2234


CLICK HERE for directions from San Francisco, CA
CLICK HERE for directions from Santa Clara, CA
CLICK HERE for directions from Sacramento, CA
CLICK HERE for directions from Stockton, CA
CLICK HERE for directions from Concord, CA

Click Here for a map of the area


Cost and Menu Choices

(Including Tax & Gratuities)

Lunch includes: 

Main course; Salad, focaccia and Tiramisu; coffee, tea, iced tea, soft drinks; tax & tip.

Choice of Main Course (select one):

  1. Fettuccine with Prawns

  2. Chicken Parmesan

  3. Penne with mushrooms in a cream Sauce

  4. Vegetarian Lasagna


Make your checks payable to and mail to:

Dot Denko
247 Ignacio Valley Circle
Novato, CA 94949-5539

(Please invite family/friends to join us as we need 40 reservations.) 
(Please make sure you note your FOOD choice with you check!)

*** You can still include an extra "kitty" donation if you wish! ****

If you have any questions about this luncheon click HERE to send an email requesting additional information!

Checks MUST be received no later than:

March 29th


Guest speakers:  Jeanne Torre (#3367)

"Finding My Roots in Italy"

"How I Researched My Genovese Family"


Limited space will be available for family history displays, etc.

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LINK to the Official "POINT" Homepage

Minutes of Some Previous Meetings

 October 2012  --  April, 2012  --  October 2011 -- April, 2011

November 2010  -- April, 2010 -- October 2009 -- April, 2009

November 2008 -- April 2008 -- October, 2007  -- April, 2007

October, 2006 -- April, 2006 -- September, 2005 -- April, 2005

October, 2004 -- March, 2004 -- November, 2003 -- April, 2003

October, 2001 --- April, 2001 --- October, 2000 --- April, 2000

October, 1996 --- April, 1997 --- April, 1998 --- October, 1999

October 20, 2012 Meeting in Santa Rosa, California

Hosted by Linda Cheney (#4309)

The Northern California Chapter #3 of POINTers in Person met October 20th at the Union Hotel Restaurant in Santa RosaLinda Cheney (#4309) hosted our meeting; her granddaughter, Cobi Price, greeted the 23 attendees.  Chapter #3 first met in May of 1993, and many of the original attendees continue come to our semi-annual Italian event.
Janice Bertolini (#4321) and Margaret Laxson (#4308) reported on the recent POINT ConferenceSpence Burton (#1889) will chair the POINT ReBirth Committee. 
Jeanne Torre (#3367) and Bob Chase (#1023) groups continue to meet in Los Gatos (e-mail notices regarding dates) and first Fridays at Espanola Restaurant in Sacramento respectively. 
Rich and Michael Rocchetta of the Colma Historical Association presented a commentary and video describing the history of Colma's 17 cemeteries (including a pet cemetery). 
Our next POINT lunch will be in the Spring (date to be advised).
June Chichizola (#519)

April 14, 2012 Meeting in Pleasanton California

The 39th lunch meeting of POINTers in Person Chapter #3, Northern California, was held at Girasole Grill in Pleasanton and hosted by Angela Di Berardino (#3001).  Thirty-five participants attended from all over the Bay Area.

The lunch choices, chicken marsala, eggplant parmigiano and the pasta dishes were excellent.  As table favors, Angie made her Abruzzese grandmother’s recipe of pizzelle, which were distributed to each table as dessert.

June Chichizola (#519), Chapter head, discussed some housekeeping items.

Angie then introduced the speaker, Francine Brevetti, noted author and journalist.  Her topic was "How to preserve your memories in a history of your family."  She has been a memoir ghost writer for several well-known persons in our area, and among her many other accomplishments, wrote the story of the founding and history of the 100-year old Fior d’Italia Restaurant in San Francisco.

Francine’s engrossing talk brought out the details of how one begins to write one’s story.  She presented many thoughtful ideas, and the participants were left with a real impetus to begin.  She gives classes, and for those wanting her help, she can be reached at www.francinebrevetti.com

June Chichizola (#519) noted that Linda and Dick Cheney will be hosting the next meeting of Chapter #3 in the Fall, date as yet unknown. (UPDATE: Oct. 20, 2012 at the Union Hotel Restaurant on Mission Blvd. in Santa Rosa, CA)

Angela Di Berardino (#3001)

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Oct. 15, 2011 Meeting in Sacramento, California

Hosted and Submitted by Rosemarie J (Ialongo) Vasquez (#4506)

POINTers In Person, Chapter #3, Northern California, met on October 15th, 2011, at  the Dante Club in Sacramento, California.
Host Rosemarie Ialongo Vasquez (#4506) greeted 52 attendees, including 34 POINTers.  Much comraderie was enjoyed by the group during the social hour that preceeded lunch, and as a special treat, Tony Damiani strolled among the guests, strumming his mandolin, and singing Italian folk songs. As a surprise, Tony and our own Jo D'Allesandro sang duets for us.

The lunch, rib roast, chicken marsalla, or pasta entrees, was excellent. As table favors, Cloie Militello (#273) and Jo D'Allesandro made biscotti which were in bags tied in red, green and white ribbons. The guest speaker for the meeting was Victor  Bertolani, a Sacramento attorney. Victor is a native of Sacramento, born of parents of Italian ancestry (Lucca). Victor and his family have been active in the Italian community of Sacramento and nothern California. His father owned a travel agency that assisted early immigrants to return to Italy to visit their families. . He takes great pride in his Italian heritage and is a member of a number of Italian Fraternal Organizations.

Victor captivated his listeners with anecdotes of his youthful experiences accompanying his father on business matters and meeting early Italian immigrants, many of whom became prominent in California and nationally. He shared his genealogy research, and his ancestors' history and family tree, and also discussed the differences immigrants encounted living in New York, Chicago, and California.

Vincent Militello (#273) shared his and his wife's 2-year experience in applying for and receiving Colie's Italian citizenship. Both he and their children are now eligible to become Italian citizens too.

Rick Vasquez spoke briefly about recent changes and developments in the LDS webpage (http://familysearch.org). Mostly, there is now much more available on the internet and he urged attendees to take advantage of it.

June Chichezola (#519) closed the meeting with the announcement that the next meeting of Chapter #3 would be April 14, 2012, in Pleasanton, California.

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April 9, 2011 Meeting in South San Francisco, California

Hosted by Spence and Cathy Burton

The 37th lunch meeting of POINTers In Person Chapter #3 was held at Ristorante Buon Gusto in South San Francisco.  Many thanks to our hosts, Spence and Cathy Burton (#1889).  Twenty-seven POINTers and 14 non-POINTers attended.  Kathy Compagno and Joan Compagno-Wright met for the first time and were excited to make a family connection.  Joanne Coffin (#1793) and Linda Cheney (#4309) have a connection in Lammari, Camaiore, and Marlia in the Lucca Province.  Connections!

Prior to lunch twenty-one folks toured the Italian Cemetery (founded in 1889) in nearby ColmaNickolas Marinelli, Director of Community Relations, gave us an over-view of San Francisco Italian immigration.  The Genovezi believed that the streets were paved with gold, but wrote back to Italy that not only were they not paved, they were expected to pave the streets!  Nickolas walked us to burial sites of Anthony Patrizi editor of early SF Italian newspapers; John F Fugazi who introduced the commission sales idea, founded a SF travel agency and Casa Fugazi Hall; and Frank Marini who became a funeral director and also opened the first Italian Bank, Columbus Savings & Loan.  These men promoted the Italian colony in San Francisco and California and were generous benefactors to the Italian colony.  Others were Levaggi (the olive oil king of California), Paladini (head of the San Francisco fishing industry), DeDomenico (Golden Grain Pasta and Rice-a-Roni, a SF treat), and Finocchio (nightclub fame).

Before lunch, Spence asked everyone to introduce themselves, their ancestors and Italian home town.  Maria Gloria (#909) also told of her association with L’Italo-Americano newspaper; she’s been writing the Italian Connection column for some thirty-five yearsMary Anne Ciabattari (#4503) announced she’ll be working on the next Salt Lake City POINT ConferenceWarren and Marie Leenerts (#5188) brought copies of La Gazzetta Italiana from Cleveland.  And Dave Roccaforte (#3085) gave June and Neil Chichizola (#519) copies of Chichizola documents he located while researching.  Connections!

Discussion followed regarding the e-mail format of POINT’s “newsletter."   Folks were overwhelmingly in favor of the paper newsletter and would be willing to pay more in their subscription.  Folks also suggested the possibility of eliminating one issue per year and the use of lesser quality paper and photos.  Although we’re aware that much thought had gone into the decision to go on-line, folks were asked to e-mail Dr. Militello their thoughts.

Spence introduced Nickolas as our guest speaker.  Nickolas acknowledged all that Spence and Cathy Burton and Maria Gloria do for the Italian community.  As Director of Community Relations, he works to reacquaint people with their Italian heritage and culture and genealogy.  (See their web-site with a searchable database at Find a Grave, or their site Italian Cemetery website.)  He conducts an Italian Genealogy and Dual Citizenship Workshop at the San Francisco Italian Athletic Club (nickolas@igdcw.com ).  A number of previous attendees are well on their way to dual citizenship as a result of the workshop.  The Italian Cemetery also sponsors Italian language classes.  He said we need more amateur genealogists to help others make Italian connections and to figure out that they are Italian.  (Sounds like POINT.)  Nickolas shared that he’d found his great-great-grandfather after fifteen years by researching a collateral family member. 

Our October 15th POINT lunch will be hosted by Richard and Rosemarie Vasquez (#4506) and Angie Di Berardino (#3001) at the Dante Club in Sacramento. 

That’s it folks.
June Chichizola (#519)
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November 6, 2010 Meeting in Pleasanton California

Hosted by Jeanne Torre (#3367) and Angela Di Berardino (#3001)

The 36th lunch meeting of POINTers in Person Chapter #3 was held at Girasole Grill in Pleasanton and hosted by Jeanne Torre (#3367) and Angela DiBerardino (#3001).  Twenty-two POINT members and six non-POINTers attended. 
June Chichizola (#519) announced the passing of Leon Pirofalo (#4061)Jeanne's Los Gatos sub-group continues to meet.  Ric Vasquez (#4506) reported that the Sacramento sub-group meets the first Friday monthly at Espanola Restaurant.
Marge Laxson (#4308), one of three from the group, reported on the August POINT Conference.   LDS had many computers available for the attendees and staff (so very helpful) available for assistance.   The morning lectures were very most informative.  Ruth Merriman's (#4887) syllabus was given attendees.  And the Plaza Hotel was very convenient to LDSMarge located her grandmother's marriage certificate!  Mary Ann Ciabattari (#4503) volunteered to serve on the 2012 POINT Conference Planning Committee.  
Angie advised that should you have questions about Italian property, Anthony and Sonya Alioto (#4890) can offer their assistance.
Angie then introduced Professor Teri Ann Bengiveno of Las Positas College, Livermore.  Her topic was The California Italian American Project: Preservation of the Italian American Experience.   She is President of the Western Regional Chapter of the American Italian Historical Association.  The preservation's project for California Italians has included the cities of Richmond, San Diego, San Jose and Stockton.   Meetings for the last two cities saw one hundred people attend.  Interviews were completed, photos gathered and research completed.  (A Linden box manufacturer is now working with fifth generation Italians in Stockton.)  Teri Ann's hometown of San Jose saw three main waves of immigration; the first 1880-1920, the second 1930s-1965, and the third wave dates from 1965-today.   The migratory patterns are most interesting;  before coming to California, they went to Argentina, Cuba, Yonkers, NY.  San Jose families came mainly from Southern Italy and Sicily.  And the Italian fishermen followed the fish from Benica to Pittsburg to Monterey.   Teri Ann stated that genealogy and recorded family histories preserve our Italian history.  The Western Regional's web-site is http://aiha-wrc.org

Our April 9, 2011 POINT lunch will be hosted by Spence and Cathy Burton (#1889) in South San Francisco at the Ristorante Buon Gusto. A brief tour of the nearby Historical Italian Cemetery in Colma will precede the luncheon. Our Guest Speaker will be Nickolas Marinelli of the Italian Cemetery.

June Chichizola (#519)
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April 17, 2010 Meeting in Petaluma, California

Hosted by Spence and Cathy Burton

Our 35th POINTers in Person lunch was held April 17th at Semolina’s Restaurant in Petaluma (north of San Francisco).  Spence & Cathy Burton (#1889) hosted 22 POINT members and 19 non-POINT members who were greeted by Mary Ann Ciabattari (#4503).  Italian speaking three year old Emilia, daughter of Anthony and Sonia Alioto (#4890), was a real charmer.  The Alioto’s provide Italian legal services.

Spence noted that Cathy and Anthony were former guest speakersItalian Catholic Federation President Louise Vicino (ancestors from Calabria) called herself a southern belle.  Six members of the Cristoforo Colombo Club of Marin County attended.  Nickolas Marinelli of the Italian Cemetery in Colma advised that their records, along with photos, were on their web-site (http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=cr&CRid=8078&CScn=italian+cemetery&CScntry=4&CSst=6&).  Two Italian Cemetery Heritage Tours are scheduled for May 9 and June 13Barbara Lacchia (#5129) hopes to write a family history for Moschella, Ciardo and Guida families from San Potito Ultra and Pratola Serra.   Joe Tambe (#508) shared his grandfather’s ancestor chart (18’ long) provided through http://www.ancestryprinting.com  The chart was a wonderful document.  Four people expressed an interest in attending the POINT Conference in Salt Lake.

Jeanne Torre (#3367) continues to host the sub-group in Los Gatos.  If you’re interested in attending, contact her for the meeting dates.  Rick Vasquez (#4506) reported that the Sacramento sub-group meets the first Friday at the Espanol Restaurant.

Spence introduced guest speaker Lido Cantarutti, founder and director of the San Rafael Fall Italian Film Festival (http://www.italianfilm.com).  Lido’s family comes from the Friuli region.  He was honored with the Italian knighthood and the Cavaliere title in 1989 (Order of Merit of the Italian Republic) and was later promoted to “Cavaliere Ufficiale” or “Knight Officer” by the Italian governmentLido is also an Italian language instructor and very active in Italian affairs.  Lido named each Italian region and asked for cheers for your Italian region!  He commented on the affinity among Italian families and the life values of hard work, family, helping each other, and the moral and ethical values we’ve received.  He began the Italian Film Festival thirty-four years ago.  This year will feature a number of new films from Rome by top and promising directors and actors.  He’s interested in good movies, story-telling and presenting the Italian films and culture to the public.  He noted that a good reference book for Italian surnames is Dizionario dei cognomi italiani by Emidio DeFelice, 1978, Arnoldo Mandadori, publisher.  And we learned that Lido played the Pope in a History Channel film about Galileo Galilei.  Everyone enjoyed listening to Lido’s presentation. 

Our November 6 lunch will be hosted by Jeanne Torre (#3367) and Angela Di Berardino (#3001).

June Chichizola (#519)

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October 24, 2009 Meeting in San Mateo, California

June Chichizola (#519), Chairperson/Organizer

Chapter #3 of POINTers in Person has been meeting for 17 years!  Our 34th meeting was held on October 24, 2009 at Luceti’s Restaurant in San Mateo (south of San Francisco ).  Host June Chichizola (#519) greeted 28 POINT members and 8 non-POINT members.

The Sisson Museum in Mount Shasta’s current “Italian Americans Celebrate Their Heritage” display continues through December 2010.  Well worth a trip North.  The San Francisco Chronicle had an article entitled “Little Italy for Little Kids” regarding the number of popular Bay Area Italian language schools.

Enrico Reguzzoni (#1998), originally from Genoa , shared his family history book which dates back to 1743  ModenaJeanne Torre noted she can trace her Torre  family back to 1520Rick & Rosemarie Vasquez (#4506) have completed her brother’s  WWII history.  Art Ialongo (1923-2008) served with honor in the US Army as an Artilleryman from Normandy to the German Elbe River .  Copies of his service history have been sent to his four children.  Rita Baum was interested to see POINT member #1388 researching Ragozzino; Rita plans to join POINT.

Our two sub-groups continue to meet – Bob Chase (#1023) the first Friday at Espanol Restaurant, Sacramento, and Jeanne Torre (#3367) in Los Gatos .

Cathy Balestrieri Burton (#1889) presented “Parliamo italiano.”   Cathy guided us through nomi Italiani, pronuncia, Saluti e Altre Espressioni, La geografia,  La Famiglia i conversazioni.    “Marianna: Ciao, Giovanni, come stai?  Giovanni: Bene, grazie, E tu?  Marianna: Abbastanza bene, grazie.  Giovanni: Ciao, Marianna. Marianna: Arrivederci.”   We all enjoyed speaking Italian. While teaching Italian, Cathy and her husband, Spence, made five trips to Sicily with her students and hosted three groups from Sicily .   Cathy’s cousins, Michael & Laura Messina, joined our group.  Although cousins, they are still working to make the connection.

Thanks once again to Bob Chase for his silent auction.

Our next lunch meeting is scheduled for April 17, 2010 in Petaluma hosted by Cathy and Spence Burton.

June Chichizola  (#519)

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April 25, 2009 Meeting in Sacramento, California

Submitted by Rosemarie J (Ialongo) Vasquez (#4506)
POINTers in Person Chapter #3- Northern California, held its 33rd meeting on April 25, 2009 at the Dante Club in Sacramento, California, where we all enjoyed a very wonderful lunch, good conversation, and a very informative genealology program.
Jo D'Alessandro (#2920) was our hostess and Marie Leonard (#1976) signed in 45 in attendance including 4 non-members. Rick and Rose Vasquez (#4506) provided a wall map of Italy,Sicily and Sardinia. Members were asked to place a map pin into the town(s) of their ancestry. June Chichizola took the map with her to re-use at the next Chapter #3 meeting.
Rose and Rick also were also responsible for getting the guest speaker. The speaker was Ron McDowell, Director of the Sacramento Regional Family History Center, on Eastern Avenue in Sacramento CA.... and what an outstanding  speaker he was.

Mr McDowell opened by urging all present to consider what would happen to all our records, photos, documents and family trees (and memories) after we  were gone. He cited a recent experience wherein a set of photo albums and scrap books, dating back to the 1930's, was recovered from a local dumpster, and what a pity it would have been if survivors had not been found. He suggested that we all avail ourselves to one of the several genealogical computor programs such as PAF, Family Tree Maker, or Legacy to catolog, store and display our family data, and to backup our files often.He also suggested that we discuss with family members who would like to take over after we're gone,  who would like copies of our data and so on.
He handed out and reviewed a brochure, "How do I start my Family History?' with special emphasis on the section describing the resources available at or through the Family History Center. These include Family Search, Library Card Catolog, Social Security Death Index, International Genealogical Index...The extensive book collection....US Census Records    FH Library Catalog....the New Familysearch and Pedigree File...and the equipment available at the center including computors, microfilm readers and printers.
We are lucky here in Sacramento in that our Family History Library is classified as 'Regional', meaning that it has free access to many commercial 'pay to use' programs such Ancestry.com and others.

Mr McDowell then went on to describe many of the ways that ancestral data can be uncovered with special emphasis on Italian genealogy and discussed a number of websites that could be yeild a wealth of information. Two sites in particular that he recommended were:  http://www.rootsweb.com and http://www.stevemorse.org 

A question and answer period then followed. All present were very grateful to Mr McDowell for the outstanding presentation he gave and all agreed that they had learned a lot.

After the guest speaker, Jo D'Alessandro (#2920) conducted a 'Pinochio Quiz' in Italian. Since everyone got all the answers correct, Jo pulled a name out of a hat and Bob Chase (#1023) won a beautiful basket  of wine and Italian goodies graciously donated by Cloie and Vin Militello (#273).

June Chichizola then opened the business portion of the meeting by calling on  representatives of Chapter #3 sub groups::
  1.  Jeanne Torre (#3367) reported that the South-Bay Sub Group met at the Santa Clara Library where the librarian spoke giving reseach hints and tips for use in Ancestry.com.
  2.  Bob Chase (#1023) reported that the Sacramento Sub Group meets every first Friday at the Español Restaurant, at 1:00 with 6 to 12 members attending. Bob also had a silent  auction of Italian 'stuff' to raise money for the Chapter.
A discussion followed on how to pay for, or reduce mailing expences, and it was agreed:
           - Add $2 to luncheon fees
           - Stop mailing to those who have consistently failed to attend meetings
           - Notify (those willing) by email rather than postcard.
Our next luncheon will be on October 24th at Luceti's in San Mateo, CA, hosted by June Chichizola (#519)

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November 8, 2008 Meeting in Petaluma, California

Hosted by Linda Cheney (#4309)

Chapter #3 held its 32nd POINTers in Person meeting in Petaluma at the Semolina Restaurant.  Linda Cheney (#4309) was our host, and Sally Schaefer (#4822) signed in the 28 POINT members and 10 non-POINT folks. 
June (& Neil) Chichizola (#519) introduced Anita (& Tom) TomasiAnita's great-grandmother Madalena and Neil's great-grandmother Teresa Semorile were sisters born in Savagi and Zoagli (LI).
Jeanne Torre (#3367) of Los Gatos and Bob Chase (#1023) of Sacramento reported on their Italian genealogy meetings.  Bob had a copy of the recently printed POINT Directory for all to review.  Thanks to Bob for the silent auction for our mailing kitty.
Carolyn Fregulia, author of Italians of the Gold Country and also Logging in the Sierras, was our guest speaker.   In the 1830's Italians immigrated mainly to the east coast where Little Italys were established.  With the Gold Rush, they thought maybe they could do better in California where land, similar to Italy, was free.  By the 1860's the Amador County Italians became merchants, dealt in agriculture, were flourshing and sent money home.   And then people from their Italian towns or regions began coming to Amador County.  From 1880-1900 cheap labor was available for the mines (although their descendants are not to be found in Amador County today).   Many of the miner's widows opened boarding houses and often times became the miner's "bankers."  Immigration into the county stopped with WWI and WWII.  Various areas in the county represent an Italian region.  One Amador County creek area will be settled by people from a region of Genoa; twenty miles away in the county, there'll be another region of Genoa.  It is interesting to note that the first Italians to the county became the county's leading citizens and their children became lawyers, elected officials, etc.  Carolyn credits her Uncle Mike with her love of family history and Amador County history.
Cathy (Morino & Grimadli) Gardner was having lunch at the restaurant, saw the Sicily table decoration, asked about our meeting.  Her family is from Porticello and in talking with Cathy Burton (#1889) found that Cathy's family comes from the next town!  It truly is a small, small world.  (An excited Cathy left with POINT newsletters.)
The next lunch will be hosted by Jo D'Alessandro (#2920) and the Sacramento folks in March or April 2009. (Editor's note: Lunch date is April 25th)
June Chichizola  (#519)
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April 19, 2008 Meeting in Pleasanton California

Hosted by Sally Schafer (#4822)

Chapter #3 held its 31st POINTers in Person meeting at Girasole in Pleasanton.   Sally Schafer (#4822) served as our host;  Linda Cheney (#4309) also greeted the 26 POINT members and 9 non-POINT members in attendance.  We were served the restaurant's Scoozzi, their signature gorgonzola and green onion pocket bread rubbed in garlic, served with tomato basil fresco; delicious!
We were pleased to welcome new members Pam & Mike Neuer (#5156) and Jeff Vaillant (#5177).   Al and Carolyn Ferrari (#2054) told June Chichizola (#519) of their trip to Montalengne (Torino) and Frineo (Asti) with their children to celebrate their 50th Anniversary; a truly wonderful experience for the entire family.  Warren and Marie Leenerts learned about POINT when a cousin sent them a Cleveland Italian newspaper; and they plan to join POINT.  Warren's German genealogy is completed thanks to another Leenerts' research.   Jerry and Rose DiMaggio heard that Tom DiMaggio was to be the guest speaker and wondered if they were related.  Not related but Jerry's ancestors came from a near-by town.  Jeanne Torre (#3367) spoke with Christine (#2824) and  Sandra Arata about their Chiavari region.
Our first speaker was Rick Vasquez (#4506); Rosemarie was on an Italian trip with their daughter.  Rick gave folks two hand-outs with recommended Italian reading.  Included were "Blood Washes Blood" by Frank Viviano, "Italy's Many Diasporas" by Donna Gabaccia, "The Abruzzo Trilogy" by Ignazio Silone, "The Little World of Con Camillo" by Giovanni Guareschi. 
Jo D'Alessandro (#2920) recommended the film, the Golden Door also.  June added Michael Dibdin's Aurelio Zen series of mysteries. 
Our second speaker was Tom (and Gayla) DiMaggio who told us of growing up Italian in Pittsburg, California which is a Sister City to Isola Delle Femmine in SicilyPittsburg was unmistakenly an Italian town. 
Kathy Compagno (#3522) and other volunteers at Oakland LDS have researched Isola Delle Femmine as they share common ancestors with Joe DiMaggio (Antonino Lucido 1764-1855/Speranza Puccio 1768-1820).   Kathy provided Jerry and Tom with that Ahnentafel Report and Kathy's translation of Comune di Isola Delle Femmine: Storia o Leggenda? (1992).  Kathy will put Jerry in touch with two people she knows who speak his Sicilian Arberesh.  Needless to say, everyone was thrilled to receive and share family information.
Bob Chase's (#1023) Sacramento sub-group and Jeanne's Los Gatos sub-group continue to meet with continued success.  Thanks once again to Bob for the silent auction.
The next lunch will be hosted by Linda Cheney in Petaluma in late October or early November. (Editor's note: lunch was held on Nov. 8th)
June Chichizola  (#519)
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October 27, 2007 Meeting in San Mateo, California

Hosted by Leon C. Pirofalo (#4061)

POINT's Chapter #3 held its 30th POINTers in Person meeting at Luceti's Restaurant in San Mateo.   We were hosted by Leon Pirofalo (#4061) with 29 POINT members and 9 non-POINTers in attendance.   Leon was assisted by Sally Schafer (#4822), Leona August (#2104), Donna Miguelgorry (#5096), and Rose Marie Ostler (#4284).  Leon and his wife, Marilyn, brought his 7' long  Pirofalo Family Tree and  Italian flag. 
June Chichizola (#519) reminded folks of the POINT National Conference in SLC Aug 25-29, 2008 featuring Ruth Merrimann presentations.  She  and Neil were pleased to see the Chichizola Family Picture Pedigree in POINT's Issue #78.   She announced the passing of Chapter #3 members Frank Uomini (#606) of Stockton and Helen Marieni Baldocchi (#299) of Oakley.  Helen's granddaughter always asked her, "Tell me the old stories, Grandma."  We are saddened by their passing and extend sympathy to their families.  On DNA testing, GeneTree and Ancestry.com have just announced their services.  
Bob Chase's  (#1023) Sacramento sub-group meets the first Friday at Espanola Restaurant; they have 8 to 10 folks per meeting.  Jeanne Torre's (#3367) sub-group continues to meet in Los Gatos periodically.  She advises meeting dates via e-mail.   Thanks again to Bob for his silent auction to aid the mailing kitty. 
Leon introduced our guest speaker, Lawrence DiStasi, author of Una Storia Segreta: The Secret History of Italian American Evacuation and Interment during World War II.  Una Storia Segreta (the words in Italian mean both "a secret story" and "a secret history") was developed by the American Italian Historical Association's Western Regional Chapter;  Larry is its Curator/Newsletter Editor.  During World War II, nationwide more than 160,000 Italian immigrants and non-English speaking Italian immigrants were under certain government restrictions.  These immigrants were known as enemy aliens.  They could be arrested and were placed under curfew, had property confiscated, were interned and were deported.   Home raids of enemy aliens began in 1942.  Any citizen's home could be searched if an enemy alien lived there.  In February 1942, enemy aliens were required to re-register and carry a pink booklet containing their photo and fingerprints and be under an 8 pm curfew.  On Feb 24, 1942, the government set-up prohibitive zones west of Highway 1 in California which placed certain cities (Richmond, Alameda, Pittsburg, Santa Cruz) off limits. It was called male notte.  This was especially difficult for fishermen as they worked in the prohibitive zones; and their boats were used by the military as mine sweepers.   Many lost their livelyhood.  Locally, detention centers were established at Silver Avenue in SF and Sharp Park in Pacifica; they were then interned at Angel Island and then sent to internment camps around the country.   There was an exclusion program too for citizens considered dangerous by the FBI.  These people could not stay in these prohibitive zones.  Recently, a woman obtained 550 pages of FBI records (under the Freedom of Information Act) regarding her uncle.   After World War II the Italian communities changed as a result of these government restrictions.  For example, many spoke only English at home.  The Wartime Violation of Italian American Civil Liberties Act of Nov 2000 acknowledged these civil liberties violations. 
 A traveling exhibit entitled Una Storia Segreta: When Italian Americans Were 'Enemy Aliens', has been displayed in over fifty sites nationwide.  We were pleased to have had Larry speak to us on this historical aspect of the Italian American experience.
The next lunch on April 19, 2008  in Novato (Webmaster note: location has been moved to Pleasanton) will be hosted by Sally Schafer (#4822) and Donna Dell (#3502). 
June Chichizola (#5l9)
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April 21, 2007 Meeting in Petaluma, California

Hosted by Spence and Cathy Burton

Chapter #3 of POINT held its 29th POINTers in Person meeting at the Semolina Restaurant in Petaluma.  We were hosted by Spence and Cathy Burton (#1889) with 24 POINTers and 9 non-POINT folks attending.  Linda Cheney (#4309) had everyone sign-in.   We were pleased to have new members Barbara & Joe Lacchia (#5729) attend.
Liz Basile (#1671) brought her Chapter #3 photo album; we've been meeting for 15 years!
June Chichizola (#519) announced the passing of Chapter members Connie Gallina (#1978) of Sacramento, Norma Hurley (#3852) of Stockton, and Peter Barrale (#104) of Santa Cruz.  They will be missed by our group.
Jeanne Torre (#3367) reported on her sub-group's  meetings in Los Gatos and requested that all Chapter members advise her of e-mail address changes.   Bob Chase (#1023) and his Sacramento sub-group meet the first Friday and suggests that one should write in Italian "to facilitate your request."  He also annonced the 126th Sutter Creek Italian Picnic held June 1-3 and the Aviation Museum at McClellan Park will feature through September Leonardo's reconstructed inventions.  Thanks once again to Bob for our silent auction to aid the mailing kitty.
Jerry Goggiel (#4690) told of listening to Italian radio on the internet http://www.raiclick.it   They have three channels of information.  It helps to keep up with your Italian.
Spence and Cathy and her Italian language class students from Tomales High School returned (a week ago) from Sicily where they visited their sister school.  Mr. Vincenzo Majani (age 91) of Marsala wrote his poem THE EMIGRANTS in their honor.
Jeanne advised that the proposed 2008 POINT Conference in Philadelphia has been cancelled.  POINT is working to link up with some LDS Salt Lake City programs possibly next year.  Check the POINT newsletter for more information.
Spence introduced our guest speaker, Jo Russell of the Sonoma Genealogical Society.  Jo suggested one review their files to determine what blanks need to be filled in before beginning your on site research.  Review the US Census records. Meet the local people (whether in Italy or Georgia) as they are a wealth of information.  When the Italian town is unknown, look at the immigration documents.  At the conclusion of her presentation, Spence made Jo an honorary Italian!
The next lunch October 27th will be hosted by Leon Pirofalo (#4061) in San Mateo.  Guest speaker will be Lawrence DiStasi, author of Una Storia Segreta.

All for now!
June Chichizola  #519
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October 21, 2006 Meeting in Sacramento, California

Art Dieli (#3142)
Assisted by: Marie Leonard (#1976), Toni LaMaritate (#2537), and Carol Kwolek (#2040)

POINT's Chapter #3 held its 28th POINTers in Person meeting at the Dante Club in Sacramento on October 21st.  Thirty-one POINT members and 16 non-POINT folks attended the lunch hosted by Art Dieli (#3142).  Marie Leonard (#1976), Toni LaMaritate (#2537), and Carol Kwolek (#2040)  assisted Art with the lunch.
Jeanne Torre (#3367) of Los Gatos and Bob Chase (#1023) of Sacramento are holding small group discussions in their areas; folks are asked to contact them for details.
Art commented that the POINT Conference in Los Angeles was a very informative event.  He then introduced Chapter #3 folks who gave an overview of  the various presentations.  They were Jeanne Torre on Italian Military Records and Passport Applications, Angela DeBerardino (#3001) on Civil Registration Records and Catasto Onciario, Josie Vaughn (#1546) on Passenger List Research, and Toni LaMaritate on Unlocking the Secrets to my Family History. Richard Vasquez (#4506) then gave a short history of Sgt. John Basilone who appeared on a U.S. Postage Stamp.
The guest speaker was Colleen Fitzpatrick (she noted her Italian name is Colleeni Fitzini) who advised us on how to look at photographs and  to notice photographic details while researching.  She showed us how to use databases to the best advantage.  Taking the 1851 Admission Records of the New Orleans Charity Hospital, she was able to "fill in the blanks" in her family research.
June Chichizola (#519) thanked Bob Chase for the silent auction for the mailing kitty.
Our next lunch is scheduled for April 21 in Petaluma to be hosted by Spence & Cathy Burton (#1889).
As always, the Sacramento folks turn out for a POINT lunch.

All for now!
June Chichizola  #519
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April 1, 2006 Meeting in Auburn, California

Josie Vaughn (#1564), Host
Assisted by: Laura Argento and Leita & Bill Spoto (#3175)

POINT's Chapter 3 held its 27th POINTers in Person meeting at Latitudes Restaurant in Auburn (N of Sacramento) on April 1st.  Thirty-one POINT members and nine non-POINT folks attended including new member Roberta McQuinn (#5010).  Josie Vaughn (#1564) hosted the lunch.  Table decorations were basil and Italian parsley plants and Easter candy!  Josie was assisted by Laura Argento and Leita & Bill Spoto (#3175).
June Chichizola (#519) thanked Spence Burton (#1889) and Jeanne Torre (#3367) for their Chapter computer work.  Eight members indicated they would be attending the October POINT Conference.  June recommended two Italian books: Vita by Melania G Mazzucco (Italians in NY 1906 and winner of Italy's 2003 Strega Prize) and A Thousand Days in Tuscany by Marlena de Blasi (living today like the Tuscan villagers).
Rick Vasquez (#4506) recommended gensmarts computer program.  Art Dieli (#3142) and two other members have their DNA reports from the genographic project.  The mitochondrial DNA passes through the female line and this shows that women came along with the armies invading Italy.
Jeanne Torre of Los Gatos and Bob Chase (#1023) of Sacramento are holding small group sessions in their area.  Contact them for details.  Leita is writing a book on Sicilian research and presented the attendees with her "Let's Read Records in Italian."  It's a very professional brochure which includes birth, promise to marry, and death record translations and forms as well as occupation translations, names with Italian equivalents and Italian family group sheets.
Josie introduced speaker Maria Brower (#1173), founder of the Nevada County Genealogical Society and part of the Nevada City Doris Foley Historical Library.  Maria spoke on how to use U.S. directories as they were necessary for social and business purposes and were created by clubs, organizations, business, industry, church and social groups.  Repositories with large collections of directories include Family History Library in Salt Lake and the Allen County Public Library in Fort Wayne, Indiana to name two.  She also discussed newspaper research and recommended the internet's GenWeb County pages, university collections, state archives and libraries, and private libraries for locating newspapers.  Commemorative newspaper reprints are an excellent resource.  Another newspaper source is the U.S. Newspaper Project http://www.neh.gov/projects/usnp.html#California.
Maria supplied us with many additional research avenues.
Thanks to Bob for our silient auction and for obtaining the Italian Import Company of Sacramento's door prizes.  Laura won the Torrone Siciliano and Toni LaMaritate (#2537) the panettone.
The next lunch will be hosted by Art Dieli (#3142) at the Dante Club in Sacramento October 21, 2006.

All for now!
June Chichizola  #519
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September 10, 2005 Meeting in Sacramento, California

Jo D'Alessandro (#2920) and Rosemarie Vasquez (#4506), Co-Hosts

The 26th meeting of POINTers in Person Chapter #3 was held at the Dante Club in Sacramento on September 10th.  Forty-two POINT members and twenty-one non-POINT folks attended.  Jo D'Alessandro (#2920) hosted our luncheon along with our co-host Rosemarie Vasquez (#4506) and helpers Marie Leonard (#1976), Connie Gallina (#1978) and Carol Kwolek (#2040).  Visiting from the Los Angeles POINT Chapter were Lewis and Cleo Holmes.  Jo and her daughter baked biscotti (named after her mother, Carlotta's Biscotti) for the folks. 
June Chichizola (#519) reminded folks of the POINT Conference 2006 in Los Angeles. Spence Burton (#1889) proudly announced that his wife, Cathy, had been awarded the Cavaliere dell' Ordine della Stella della Solidarieta' Italiana (Knight of the Order of the Star of Italian Solidarity) by the President of Italy.  Cathy teaches Italian, and she and Spence take students to Italy each year.  Congrats, Cathy.
Jeanne Torre (#3367) has held two informal meetings in Los Gatos for Chapter #3 members with eight folks at each meeting.  The next meeting will be Nov. 16th. Jeanne requested members to confirm their e-mail address with her.  Also Heritage Quest and Ancestry had been added to her local library; check your library. 
Rick Vasquez spoke about Italian civil vs religious records and handed out a translation of civil birth documents.  Rosemarie then introduced Art Dieli (#3142) and his computer/slide presentation on Genealogy and DNA, making the connection of family history with family ancestry through genealogy and genes (DNA).  He noted that after researching our own records we then consider Italian civil and municipal records, then religious records, earlier tax, notary and university records, and then nobility records.    Through DNA we have another way to search our ancestry through genetics.  Art handed out National Geographic "The Genographic Project"  fact sheet that further details the subject. "Following a DNA marker back through the generations to its origin, geneticists can pinpoint both the age and geographic origin of the most recent common ancestor of everyone alive who carries that marker." The Web URL is http://www5.nationalgeographic.com/genographic.  Art's presentation was well received, and folks wanted to know how to go about entering their DNA into the project. ( Art's daughters, Nancy and Sara, assisted their Dad.)
Marie then introduced Jim Rader who teaches family history and computer-related classes.  He has been researching the Rader surname for fifteen years.  But are all the Rader's related?  He has traced them from Prussia to Italy to Colonial Pennsylvania (within 50 miles of one another) and to Tennessee where some are related within six generations by 37 DNA markers.  Regarding the ever up-dated computer software, your approach to genealogy will determine which software you use.  Jim suggests you put your genealogy into computer format to preserve family history.  Another well received presentation.

Barbara Alfidi from the "Order Sons Of Italy In American" displayed some of her collection of things made in Italy, including a button map of Italy she made.
Bob Chase (#1023) gave us Croccantino chocolates, obtained a donated Family Tree Legends program from the Sacramento Office Depot, and he conducted the silent auction for the mailing kitty.  Thanks once again, Bob.
The next luncheon will be hosted by Josie Vaughn (#1546) in Auburn on April 1st, 2006.
All for now!
June Chichizola  #519

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April 2, 2005 Meeting in Stockton, California

Norma Hurley and Margaret Lattimer, Hostesses

The Spring luncheon of Chapter #3 of POINT was held April 2, 2005 at the Waterloo Gun and Bocci Club in Stockton, CA.  Fifty (50) members enjoyed the lunch and our Italian get together.  It was a very lively group that shared stories and experiences with one another.  Your hostesses were Norma Hurley and Margaret Lattimer Unfortunately Margaret was not able to attend the day of the luncheon.

The Bocci kitchen served delicious Sausage, Chicken Cacciatore, and Polenta buffet style, and had strawberry shortcake for desert.

As an extra we sent out flyers to many Italian names that were in the white pages of the telephone book.  It has been our experience that many in this area did not know that our organization existed.  And some people responded to our advertisement.

Our speaker for the luncheon was Donald Donato, Executive Director of Pacific Italian Alliance, a nonprofit cultural organization, which celebrates the heritage and promises the culture of Italians in California’s Central Valley.  He presented to all attendees a monthly issue of their magazine. “Corriere della Valle.”  In the issue was an article about the history and migration of the Italians to California.   He discussed the reasons for the influx into this valley.  It had very little to do with the “Gold Rush,” but more to do with the “golden opportunities” that existed in the late 1800’s.  Farming, fishing, bakeries, restaurants, etc.     Most of those that came into the valley were from Genoa, and were and still are, farmers in this area.    Another reason was the climate.   Norma said “My grandmother used to tell me that where she was born in Sicily was just like California.  Oranges, Lemons, Cherries,  Sun and Sea."  Thousands of Italians were willing to give up their labor and talent to make a better life for themselves and their families

Bob Chase told us about a letter that he had received from a woman in Formia (near Rome) sending him her family tree connecting him to her family.  Ironically enough, Bob has been friendly with a confectioner in San Marco, when he was in Italy, and this confectioner had  told this woman to contact Bob about the Jansiti family or “Iansiti “J” became “I”) or Iansiti.   He was emphasizing how unusual contacts can often get you the information you are researching.

Bob also presented to the group information about a California Assembly Bill that was in presentation by Assemblyman Joe Canciamilla.  AB390.   The bill is an equal-opportunity proposal for California schools to teach students about Italian Americans.  The bill also aims to erase “organized crimes” stereotypes of Italian Americans.  He passed out information concerning the bill, and who to contact for your imput.

The meeting adjourned at 3:00 p.m.  But everyone hung around for a while still conversing and sharing stories.

 Norma (Busalacchi) Hurley #3852

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October 30, 2004 Meeting in Petaluma, California

June Chichizola (#519), Chairperson/Organizer

The 24th meeting of POINTers in Person Chapter #3 was held at the Semolina Restaurant in Petaluma on October 30th.  Forty-one POINT members and 20 non-POINT members attended. Spence and Cathy Burton (#1889) hosted the luncheon.

Spence thanked June and Neil Chichizola (#519), Liz Basile (#1671), Ines Williams (#4700), John and Mary Ann Ciabattari (#4503) and his wife, Cathy, for all their help.
Cathy introduced Mr. Fernando Dan, an Italian born Petaluma resident who spoke on the Museo Italoamericano at Fort Mason in San Francisco.  It was founded in 1978 and is the only museum in the US that is dedicated to American and Italian artists.  He noted that prior to 1861 events in Italy occurred in small "states" and the church kept the records.  Kathy Campagno (#3522) advised that civil records in Sicily began in 1820.
Our next speaker was Lucia Filanti (from Bari, in Puglia) who talked about the Istituto Italiano di Cultura in San Francisco.  It is part of the Italian Consulate and promotes the Italian language and culture.  Their public events have included an Italian Theater Workshop, an Italian Film Festival in San Francisco, a lecture on Words in the Italian Language, an exhibit on the archaeological restoration project in Stabiano, among many other events. The Istituto offers scholarships to learn the Italian language in Italy.  Evening language classes are given at the Istituto.
Many folks talked of their Italian travels.  Kathy Kramer (#2843) traveled to Sicily and learned that her stonemason grandfather's name could have been Contorno (not Pontorno).  Norma Hurley (#3852) attended a July Festa in Milwaukee where many Sicilians live.  A special reunion of 150 folks with Sant' Elia ancestors was enjoyed where she met Busalacchi cousins.  Art Dieli (#3142) and his youngest daughter traveled to Sicily and commented on the gracious Silician hospitality.  Dale O'Connor's grandmother came from outside of Lucca where she discovered family pages at the Municipio.  And then, everyone told of their ancestor's name(s) and family towns.  Connections were made......
A lengthy discussion followed about the future of the POINT data base.  It was agreed that the data base is so unique and valuable!  Seventy-five percent wanted the data base continued, and one hundred percent wanted the data base and newsletter continued.  Folks were encouraged to write Dr. Tom with their thoughts.
Thanks to Bob Chase (#1023) for the silent auction for the mailing kitty.  Thanks, too, to Spence for hosting the luncheon in the midst of a political campaign (for City Council).  We wish him a winner!
The next lunchen will be hosted by:
Norma Hurley (#3852) and Margaret Latimer (#2956) in Stockton on April 2, 2005.

That's all folks!
June Chichizola  #519   (The postcard lady)
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March 27, 2004 Meeting in Pleasanton, California

June Chichizola (#519), Chairperson/Organizer

The 23rd meeting of POINTers in Person Chapter #3 was held at Girasole Grill in Pleasanton on March 27th.  Forty-one POINT members and eleven non-POINT folks attended.  The lunch was hosted by Jeanne Torre (#3367) and Angela Di Berardino (#3001).  Jeanne asked Chapter members to please confirm their e-mail addresses with her.
June Chichizola (#519) reminded members of the Oct 7-9 POINT National Convention in Kansas City; six members advised they would be attending.  Our wish-list of ancestral towns not yet microfilmed has been e-mailed to Mr. Keith Rose at LDS. 
Jeanne introduced our guest speaker, Carolyn Fregulia of Jackson.  Carolyn's family came to Amador County during the Gold Rush She developed the 1999 Nostra Storia photo display.  Her recent project at the University of Pacific included working with Prof. Adele Maiello, visiting from the University of Genoa, Italy, to study Italians in Stockton and central California.  Carolyn also completed a research project of the Mother Lode immigrant boarding houses which she hopes to publish.
Carolyn discussed the immigration patterns of her Amador County and how history effects immigration.  Gold was discovered in 1848 and the Gold Rush began in 1849.  The Italian families of 1850 Amador County had come to America in the 1840's and settled first on the east coast.  Those Italians saw the Gold Rush as opportunity; in the Mother Lode they started businesses, established communities and sent for family in Italy. 
Placer mining developed and Cornish miners immigrated in the 1870's with their know-how.  Young Italians and Serbs soon immigrated to take low paying jobs.  From 1850-1860 14-16 year old Italians csme to Amador County.  It was said that Mommy put her sons on the boat for America to escape the pre-unification unrest and fighting among the foreign-controlled areas of the country.  They soon sent home for their brothers and sisters who joined the already settled Italians.  By 1890-1900 the children of these Italians did not consider themselves Italian; they were lawyers, doctors, landowners.
In the 1880's many Italian women were widowed because of mining accidents.  With children to care for, they set up boarding houses which provided room, board, and laundry sevices.  These boarding houses were known for their family homestyle food and eventually became restaurants.

Carolyn noted that the Italians in Amador County came from the hill towns of Genoa  while those in the Stockton area came from the Lavaga-Framura area. 
Folks enjoyed Carolyn's presentation and will look at their research in a new light.  Carolyn and her husband Ed McCraken were interested to see member's family research albums.
Our silent auction was run by Bob Chase (#1023) for the mailing kitty.
Our next lunch will be hosted by Spence and Cathy Burton (#1889) in the Petaluma area.

That's all folks!
June Chichizola  #519   (The postcard lady)
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November 1, 2003 Meeting in Santa Rosa, California

Hosted by Elizabeth Basile  (#1671)

The 22nd meeting of POINTers in Person, Chapter #3-Northern California, was held at The Villa Restaurant in Santa Rosa, CA, on November 1, 2003. The gathering was hosted by Elizabeth Basile (#1671), who welcomed 25 POINT members and 24 non-POINT members. Spence Burton (#1889) was our able MC for the event.

June Chichizola, (#519) reminded all of the POINT National Conference, October 7-9, 2004 in Kansas City, MO. Ten people indicated they were planning to attend. June recommended Don't Tell Mama!, the Penguin Book of Italian American Writings, edited by Regina Barreca. The book contains 524 pages of the best Italian American writing from the 1880s to the present.

For gardeners, be sure to check Seeds from Italy at:  http://www.growitalian.com

Jeanne Torre (#3367) told of her two trips to Italy, one of which included researching family records in Chiavari.

Angela De Berardino (#3001) told of her research in Abruzzi and resconstructing her great-grandparents' gravesite.

Bob Chase (#1023) worked the silent auction table for the mailing kitty.

Elizabeth Mazzotti (#1084) sent her family history to relatives in Brazil and has since found another branch of the family! As you share family information, it brings back information to you.

Ines Williams of Santa Rosa is President of a local Italian genealogy group (SCGS) that meets monthy.

Cathy Burton (#1889) arranges an exchange program between local high school students and a high school in Spence's hometown of Sciacca, Sicily.

Helen Baldocchi (#299) said that her son never realized how Italian their home was until a trip to Italy to visit relatives (the same foods, traditions, etc.).

The chapter made a list of non-filmed Italian towns which will be sent to the Family History Library, as our wish list.

Cathy Burton introduced Anthony and Sonia Alioto of Italian Legal Language Services, our guest speakers.

discussed genealogy and the Italian inheritance issue. If one is advised they have inherited Italian property, one must accept the inheritance and must complete documents or refuse it. His declaration of succession sheet indicated inheritance is determined by a surviving spouse or no surviving spouse. For genealogy purposes, the Visura storica per immobile (Title Search by Lot + Block) is important for family history. Sonia advised that people believe they are entitled to ancestral property, but the statue of limitations, which can be 10 or 20 years, and the good faith statue of limitations, apply. The Aliotos' webpsite is: 
http://www.italianlaw.net Many folks found their presentation interesting and will be rethinking Italian property.

Our next gathering will be March 27, 2004, hosted by Angela Di Berardino.

That's all folks!
June Chichizola  #519   (The postcard lady)

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April 5, 2003 Meeting in Sacramento, California

June Chichizola (#519), Chairperson/Organizer

Chapter #3 of POINTers in Person held their 21st lunch April 5 at the Dante Club in Sacramento.  We have been meeting for over 10 years!  Connie Gallina (#1978) hosted the lunch/meeting.  Josie Vaughn, Carol Kwolek (#2040), and Marie Leonard (#1976) greeted folks at the sign-in table.
June Chichizola (#519) noted that 2004 POINT National Conference in Kansas City flyers were available.  A number of folks indicated they were going.  She also pointed out that Chapter #3 had the most attendees for one meeting as reported in the POINT newsletter.  
First time attendees were Del & Lou Paseri, Charlene Doolittle, Cat Nielsen, and Sally Schafer.  Charlene had taken a biography class called "Grandma, Mother & Me" and learned to write a family story and not just give family facts.  She advised looking  for Italian novels in college book stores.   Sally recently received her great-great-grandmother's baptism documents with the help of Jeanne Torre's contact in Italy.  Cat had info on the Oct 18th California Conference in Foster City sponsored by many local genealogical groups.
Marie introduced Pat Johnson, Archivist of the Sacramento Archives & Museum Collection Center.  The Center takes in public, business and family papers.  She suggested that folks remember to research with city clerks, recorders and historical societies.  To illustrate what kind of documents folks would be looking for, she reviewed a Case Study of Mr. Charles A. Luhrs of Sacramento.  Beginning with his Petition of Intent of Nov 4, 1872, she has traced him through city directories, the great register, marriage certificate, tax assessors rolls and map book, l891 city directory, house and grocery store pictures, 1906 probate and will, burial records, and finally the sale of the grocery business by his wife.  Pat answered many questions during her presentation.  Pat apoligized that Prussian Mr. Luhrs was not Italian, but the group adopted him for the day.  She indicated that 18,018 Sacramento films have recently been copied by LDS.   Pat gave the group copies of "People of Sacramento Archives, The History of Sacramento's Diverse Ethnic Groups" CD.  All enjoyed her very informative presentation and her enthusiasm for genealogy.
Bob Chase (#1023) ran the successful silent auction for the mailing kitty.
We meet next in Santa Rosa on Nov 1st and will be hosted by Elizabeth Basile (#1671).
All for now, 
June Chichizola  #519   (The postcard lady)

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October 13, 2001 Meeting in Stockton, California

June Chichizola (#519), Chairperson/Organizer

CLICK HERE to view some photos by Art Dieli!

Chapter #3 of POINTers in Person held their 18th lunch gathering October 13th at LeBistro Restaurant in Stockton.  Hosting our lunch were Josephine and Frank Uomini (#606).  They had personally invited POINT's Dr. Tom Militello, his wife Phyllis and their daughter, Lisa.  We were all so pleased to hear they would be joining us.  Unfortunately they were unable to attend and sent their regrets, regards and gifts of POINT pins to all.  We were disappointed, but understood and hope they will join us another time.  Art Dieli (#3142) had a Chapter #3 Honorary Membership certificate for Dr. Tom, which will be sent to him.

Josephine had a Sicilian map silk scarf on display and also a poster from the Comune di Militello in Val di Catania (Chiese S'Maria della Stella).  Art made up table signs of famous Italians listing their accomplishments.  Those Italians were Pirandello, Bellini, Titian, Verdi, Verga, Vespucci, Raphael, Puccini, Toscanini, Mascagni, Cicero, Columbus, Rossini, Stradivarius, da Vinci, Calvino, Boccaccio, Michelangelo, Virgil, Giotto, Leoncavallo, and Dante.  Thanks to Josephine we had Italian candies to enjoy and decorate
our tables.

We had 73 folks at our lunch, and for our enjoyment Josephine and Frank provided music by Don Garibaldi .

Carol (#2054) and Roy Ferrari from Chapter #23 joined us as Carol's brother lives in Stockton.

Our guest speaker was the Honorable Ann Chargin, Judge Retired, of Stockton who asked: What does it mean to you to be Italian? She said, "What does it mean?  IT IS WHO I AM! I'm FBI - full-blooded Italian and proudly.  How fortunate we are to live in this great country where if you are willing to work you can achieve your goals."

Her parents came from the same small town in central Italy and shared the same values - the same sense of family and personal pride in who they were.  They first immigrated to Springfield, MA with its sizable Italian settlement.  At their first home there was a large garden of vegetables and fruit.  What wasn't eaten was dried or canned and stored in the cellar.  Her Mother's love was her flower garden, and she was a wonderful cook and baker and doer.  She would make rolls that were timed to come out of the oven as the children came home after school.  They could smell those rolls from the corner of their street!  Food and mealtimes were important in Italian families where they shared time around the table.

The family picnics at Couture's Grove with five other families were memorable.  Children would play on the huge water slide and play baseball and volleyball.  Lunch was a feast of hot pasta, freshly cooked, for about 30 folks.  In the evening, they had hot dogs and hamburgers with all the fixings.  Then the musician in the group would take out their instruments, the accordion, guitar and mandolin, and all joined in a song feast.

All these things she took for granted thinking that's what families do.  As she grew and became more aware, she found that her friends and neighbors did not do all these things.  Ann noted how fortunate are we who were raised "old-country style" in a family that grew, worked, played and prayed together, united in their goals.  That is her (and our) heritage and that is what it means to Ann to be an Italian.

Several POINT members had announcements. Rosemarie Vasquez (#4506) expressed her thanks to POINT.  She had overlooked the POINT Directory's listing of towns when researching.  Upon checking, she noted Al Rhone in Ohio was also researching in Cerro Al Volturno and the same surname.  Al was so pleased when she called him.  He has belonged to POINT for years and is still trying to find information.  Rosemarie sent him copies of her documents.  Connections is what POINT is all about.

Bob Chase (#1023) advised that a genealogical packet is available from the Press Office of the Washington, DC Italian Consulate  Bob held a silent auction and monies were put in the mailing kitty.  Thanks, Bob.

Carolyn Ferrari (#2054) received a book from Saponara in the Basillicata region which included names of immigrants from 1901-1940.  Many settled in the San Francisco area and in Los Banos, CA .

The POINT National Conference - 2002 flyer was handed out.  Folks are looking forward to that conference in Salt Lake City .

Spence Burton (#1889 ) asked members with a family web page to contact him so that he could link up information for them.  Spence is the keeper of the Chapter's web page.  Thanks, Spence.

Art is organizing a Sicilian Studies Group to preserve the Sicilian language and culture.  He has been translating Sicilian poetry and includes Today's Sicilian Word at the end of his e-mails.  He told about nonsolo.cap.it , a web site for ZIP codes.  One can list your surname, and they will tell you where the surname is located on an Italian map .  You can then order a t-shirt with this map.  He also noted Frank Viviano's book "Blood Washes Blood," and "Beginner's Sicilian" by Joseph F. Privitera.

Jeanne Torre (#3367) requested members up-date their email addresses with her.  She attended an Italian language school in Todi this year.  One attends one week of morning classes and can stay with a family or in an apartment for $400.  She says she is better at reading and writing Italian, but not much better at speaking.  She found it delightful.  She also had copies of the tourist map for Fontanabuona (LI) for members researching there.

June and Neil Chichizola (#519) proudly announced that GrandBaby Allison Marie has been added to their family tree as of 9/19/01.

As always, a good time was had by all.  Our next lunch will be hosted by Angela DiBerardino (#3001) on April 6, 2002.

In these times, we learn once again the importance of family and friends and our Italian families too.

June Chichizola  #519

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April 7, 2001 Meeting in Sacramento, California

June Chichizola (#519), Chairperson/Organizer

Sal and Tony Damiani
Italian Mandolins and Folksong Sing-Alongs
Bookings: PO Box 19734
Sacramento, CA 95819
Phone: 916-981-8756

The 17th lunch of Chapter #3 of POINTers in Person was held April 7, 2001 at the Aviator's Restaurant at the Sacramento Executive Airport and was hosted by Art Dieli (#3142).  Forty-one POINT members and thirteen non-POINT members enjoyed the lunch and our Italian get-together.

Art introduced Toni LaMaritate (#2537) who just returned from researching in Sicily.  She made arrangements to hire Emilio Terrazzino for twelve research hours ($200) in Agrigento.  They located the church where her grandmother and first husband were married and learned about her children.  She noted that the countryside is beautiful with farmlands as far as the eye can see.  She plans to write her research story for POINT.

Elizabeth Basile (#1671) told of her father coming from Naples in 1892.  The family lived at 81 Mulberry Street (in Hell's Kitchen) where the family had a bakery and grocery.  (The store is now a Chinese bakery.)  Her father was eleven years old when he was taken out of school and put to work in the bakery.  He also carried a bread basket to sell bread on the street.  Well, the NIAT's Ambassador magazine (Winter 2001) ran a story called "Little Italy Then and Now" with a photograph of Elizabeth's father!  She's written to the magazine and sent a similar photograph of father and the family.  Elizabeth advised that education was always very important in her family; when her father was asked at his 75th birthday party what he was most proud of, he said, "My three children all have masters degrees."

Art had asked folks to bring a regional specialty for show and tell.  Vince and Cloie Militello (#273) brought an authentic 1745 French map of Naples and Sicily.Helen and Evo Baldocchi (#299) brought silk fabric from Lake Como and a ceramic pitcher from the Valtellina area. Angie DiBerardino (#3001) brought colorful ceramics from Gubbio, Bergama, Cortona, Deruta and Abruzzo June Chichizola (#519) brought "ul talamun (Vocabalario Talamonese)" book from Talamona and a research file on Great-Grandfather Dominic Olzeri of Baceno . Lois Smith (#2089) brought her Family Reunion papers for 100 years of the Queirolos, Garavantes, Fregulias, Ferraris and Noces . Jeanne Torre (#3367) brought a Fontanatuona topographic map of her Chiavari region.

Art provided a really special treat with a Neapolitan Sing-Along by Tony Damiani and son, Sal, playing their mandolins (see photo and contact information above).   We sang Sole Mio, Ah Marie, Funiculi Funicula among others and were in fine voice!  The music prompted Alice Petta-Goldie (#3973) to dance the tarantella, and she was joined by Toni, Angie, Clare Edwards, and Margaret Latimer's husband!!

Many folks are traveling to Italy this year. Carol Kwolek (#2040) advised she's taking her 20 years old grandson.

Thanks to Bob Chase (#1023) and to Art for contributions to the silent auction for the mailing kitty.

A good time was had by all as we talked about ancestors, our research, gathered research information, and became part of another
Italian family.

Our next lunch is scheduled for October 13th at LeBistro in Stockton to be hosted by Josephine and Frank Uomini (#606) .

All for now and best wishes from Chapter #3 to you and your/our family,

June Chichizola  #519

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October 28, 2000 Meeting in Occidental, California

June Chichizola (#519), Chairperson/Organizer

The 16th lunch for Chapter #3 of POINTers in Person met October 28, 2000 at the Union Hotel in Occidental (north of San Francisco).  Elizabeth Mazzotti (#1084) whose family has a long history in town hosted.  Thirty-nine POINT members and eighteen non-POINT members (some of whom plan to join POINT) attended on a wet, r-a-i-n-y day.  We were pleased to see many folks new to Italian genealogy.

Spence Burton (#1889) prepared the day's program.  He introduced Maria Gloria (#909) for the L'Italo Americano , weekly English and Italian language newspaper (begun in 1908).  It is a wonderful means of communication among various Italian organizations and has publicized our POINTers in Person lunches.  Maria offered a special subscription to everyone.

The recent POINT Conference in Austin was reviewed by Bob Chase (#1023), Connie Gallina (#1978), Norma Hurley (#3852), Carol Kwolek (#2040), Marie Leonard (#1976), and Jeanne Torre (#3367).  All agreed that Chapter #10 did a fabulous job putting on the Conference!  It was well organized, many good presentations, and a great Conference book.  Connie advised that she met a potential cousin and will work with her to make a family connection.  Jeanne finally met "face to face" with a corresponding POINT member. Note: one should e-mail LDS and request that your region be scheduled for LDS filming.  They noted that because of unexpected rain, Chapter #10 members provided folks with jackets, sweater  etc., to keep them warm and dry!  That's Texas hospitality!

The POINT Conference 2002 is scheduled for Salt Lake City hosted by Chapter #24 .  Big plans are in the works.  There is the possibility of providing members with research assistance at LDS.  E-mail Mike Madeo at mmadeo@mstar2.net to advise that you are coming to Salt Lake so that arrangements can be made for you.

Tom Slattery (#720) has prepared Italian letters for corresponding with Italian resources and would be happy to send them to members.

Spence discussed how digital cameras are used in recording old photographs .  He recommends the Epson 850Z .  He showed us cemetery photos and even photos taken during our lunch.

Angela DiBerardino (#3001) told of writing to the Abruzzo Archivo di Stato and receiving information to help her find the family town of Chieti.  She is in touch with a woman in town who may be a descendant of her great-grandfather's sibling.  Angela suggests taking notes when interviewing and reviewing those notes from time to time as connection can be made by the mere mention of a town.

Rick and Rose Zasquez brought a visual display of WWI military records for their Nicolas Z's 1917-1919 service and Antonio Ialongo's 1918-1919 service .  Through Antonio's records , Rose was able to learn where he was born in Italy, additional family names, his occupation, and from a letter he had written, she has his signature.  "I see my own handwriting in his," she said.

Elizabeth had a display regarding her Gonnella Occidental family , the 3" Gonnella Family History, photos of 35 family members trip to Coreglia Antelmineli in 1990, etc.

Carol Kwolek introduced her Aunt Clare Edwards who brought a photograph of Carol's great-grandmother as well as a painting of the Capistrano house .

Bob Chase had some POINT Conference items for sale and conducted a silent auction for the mailing kitty.

Our next POINT lunch will be April 7, 2001 in Sacramento  hosted by Art Dieli (#3142).

We all send you and yours our very best and hope that you and Phyllis will be able to join us one day for lunch.

All for now.

June Chichizola (#519)

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April 1, 2000 Meeting in Dublin, California

June Chichizola (#519), Chairperson/Organizer

Chapter #3 of POINTers in Person met April 1, 2000 at Frankie Johnnie & Luigi Too ! For our 1 5th lunch, hosted by Jeanne Torre (#3367).  Forty-eight POINT members and 10 non-POINT folks were in attendance.

It was agreed to send $50 for a door prize at the October POINT National Convention in Austin .  Seven folks are planning to attend.  Convention info was available thanks to Bob Chase (#1023).

Last year’s S an Francisco American Italian Historical Conference was discussed.  It dealt with the American part of Italian-American experience and included many exhibits and workshops.  Angela DiBerardino (#3001) recommended "Building Little Italy" by Richard N. Juliani regarding the early Genovese in Philadelphia.

Leon J. Radomile (#4247) spoke about his book "Heritage: Italian American Style."   The book covers notable Italian achievements in many fields.

Stan Roberti (#1740) discussed the Sept. 16/17 Festa Italiano in Oakland and requested help in the information booth.  Bob Chase advised the folks of the Aug. 5/6 Festa in Sacramento.

Jeanne will contact folks regarding their e-mail addresses ; do they want to be contacted through this means rather than by post card?  Jeanne requested help to man a POINT booth at the April California Genealogical Society’s meeting in Pleasanton.  She had a wonderful topographic map of the Fontanabuono region of Liguira from the regional tourist office.

Jeanne then introduced Spence Burton (#1889) who maintains our Chapter web page .  Thanks, Spence!  His presentation was "Getting your Family Tree Online."  There are many web sites and books that can guide us through the process.  He stated we must find an ISP or web server to store the family tree, plan the layout and content, determine how much info to make available, create the web page, verify and proofread, upload the pages to your ISP, promote your web page via links, and keep your page current.  Additional help can be found on Cyndi’s List and also "Publishing your Family History on the Internet" by Richard S. Wilson.  Regarding photos on the web, he suggested no higher resolution than 80 dpi.  We found that over half the folks use the internet.

Art Diehl’s (#3142) presentation concerned using publicly accessible computers to help you do genealogical research.  Go to the public library, the senior citizens center, and community or four-year colleges for access.  He noted the need to develop good computer strategies to be sure that you make the most of your computer time.  He listed many web sites useful to the Italian researcher.  One can research on the internet with a local telephone call.

Art also discussed passenger lists and the important information they contain, such as ship’s name, other family members traveling together, etc.  Form 81 must be completed and sent to the National Archives in Atlanta, GA.  The "Italians to America" series beginning 1880 - 1899 is now 12 volumes , and names are listed alphabetically.

Jeanne handed out her "Italian Citizenship for Americans of Italian Descent" which noted that Italian citizenship is con sanguine - it runs with the blood - unlike other countries for which citizenship depends on where you were born.  Certain documents are required, such as an Apostille .  Jeanne was hoping to show us her dual citizenship papers, but they’ve not arrived yet.

Jeanne suggested that folks might like to prepare a visual display (showing family photos, family tree, documents, etc.) for the next lunch .  Everyone thought it was a good idea and another means of sharing our research.

Helen Baldocchi ( #299) told of her grand-daughter’s visit.   She asked "Nona, tell me something old, show me something old, tell me the old stories."  She yearned to hear Nona’s stories.  We must remember to tell them something old!

Bob conducted another successful silent auction for the mailing kitty.

Our next POINT lunch will be October 28, 2000 in Occidental (Sonoma County) with Elizabeth Mazzotti (#1084) hosting and Spence Burton preparing the program.

As always, Chapter #3 sends you and yours our very best wishes.

All for now.

June Chichizola (#519)

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October 23, 1999 Meeting in Stockton, California

June Chichizola (#519), Chairperson/Organizer

Chapter #3 of POINTers in Person met October 23, 1999 at LeBistro Restaurant in Stocton for our 14th gathering.  It was hosted by Margaret Latime r with help at the welcome table by Connie Gallina (#1978) and Marie Leonard (#1975).  Forty-nine POINT members and eleven non-members attended.

Folks were reminded of the POINT National Convention in Austin, TX Oct. 6-9 in 2000, eight plan to attend.  Copies of the Convention Registration info were handed out.

A listing of Italian cultural associations in the Bay Area and a listing of favorite Italian travel books, novels, histories, etc., was available.

Guest speaker Carol Kwolek (#2040) discussed the Family History Center’s information.  She handed out their "Using Ancestral File," "Correcting Information in Ancestral File," "International Genealogical Index," and "Family History Library Catalog" brochures.  The IGI Index has 187 million names.  One should check the Family History Catalog for your Italian town to see what town records are available.  Be sure to check the listing of books in Salt Lake, request a copy of the book index for further research.

Carol noted that Salt Lake will be filming in Northern Italy in the next 3-5 years.  Jeanne Torre (#3367) said that one should let Salt Lake know of your interest in filming your town, this may encourage the filming of your town’s records.

Carol said, "Stick with your research, dig in and research, and have patience."

Michael Soranno (#2994), new to genealogy, shared his success story of obtaining family records from LDS microfilm.

Our next guest speaker was Art Dieli (#3142).  His daughter, Nancy, scheduled her visit from the East  to attend our gathering.  Art and his wife, Alice, spent five months in Sicily "to find out where I came from."  He gave us a history of Sicily noting the various peoples who came to the island.  His ancestral town of Caltagirone has 40,000 people.  His cousin, Dante, works at the Comune where records date back to 1820.  For information before that date, he turned to the churches.

He would hand-copy info and then enter that info into his notebook computer.  He gathered a wealth of family history and met family members.  Upon renting and apartment, Dieli cousins appeared with bedding, pots, etc.  Art and Alice were introduced to the shop keepers by family members too.  Market day was a joy, and feast days another delight.  And the food, excellent!  We all shared Art’s enthusiasm of their sojourn in Caltagirone.

Art had one piece of advice regarding researching in Italy – be aware of the slow, easy, relaxed pace of Italian life.  An appointment made is not necessarily an appointment kept.

Angela DiBerardino (#3001) told us of her trip to Italy to take the American cousins to meet the Italian cousins.  "It certainly was an emotional surge," she said.  They plan to restore the great-grandparents grave.  A second cousin on her Mother’s side had already worked on the family genealogy and presented Angela with that information.  Family sharing with family.

Bob Chase (#1023) conducted a silent auction for the mailing kitty.

Our next POINT gathering is scheduled for April 1, 2000 in the San Jose or Bay Area and to be hosted by Jeanne Torre and Angela DiBerardino .

All for now.

June Chichizola (#519)

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April 4, 1998 Meeting in Yountville, California

June Chichizola (#519), Chairperson/Organizer

Chapter #3 of POINTers in Person met on April 4, 1998 at Frankie, Johnnie & Luigi II in Yountville, CA for our 11th gathering. Tony DiPasquale (#2143) hosted our group of 60 (including 18 non-POINTers).  Tony’s luncheon reservations continued coming in until the very last evening.  We are fortunate that the adjoining room was available for the group.

Shared information began with Roy Mancuso (#2684) showing us church records from Serrastretta which he got from Giulio Salemme, who had contacted the priest and municipio prior to his research visit.  The church records date back to 1787.  Roy’s brother, Harold, also attended our gathering.

Elizabeth Mazzotti (#1084) told of the Gonnella Family Association’s Historical Memorial of September, 1997 in Occidental .  Honored were "those rugged individuals who braved the unknown, left their homeland and families, and started a new life here."  A proclamation from Corlia near Lucca and an award from the Sonoma Historical Association have been received.  Elizabeth encouraged all to write their family book telling what their Italian ancestors did when they came to America.  Seven members of Elizabeth’s family from Brazil are coming to visit in July after 40 years of  having lost touch.

Bop Masullo visited Cava de Tierreni and obtained his grandparents’ birth certificates (for 600 lira).  His grandmother was called Assunta in America, but the records revealed she was named Maria Santola .  Bob noted that his great-grandfather brought his grandmother to the city hall to be registered and signed the record book.  Bob had corresponded with a gentleman in Naples and was invited to a 20-course dinner - a wonderful evening with new friends and family.

Louis Bavo (#2207) , who is researching in Pedesina (LO) , brought photos of the palace in Dongo and told of Mussolini’s capture .

Jean Torre (#3367) is still corresponding with a man in Calvari who has copied all the Torre names from 1580 to mid-1700’s.  Jean now has her Torre line back to 1580.

Angela DeBerardino (#3001) noted that in many cases family members had double names.

Lorraine Raffaelli (#1413) told of corresponding with POINTer Bob Lindeborg , a fourth cousin.  Lorraine and Al will be celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary this year in Collodi , their family town.

Spence Burton (#1889) has a web page available for members use.  He is also working on his German ancestors.

Bob Chase (#1023) requested help on composing a letter to people in the Benevento telephone book.  He noted that civil records show his surname as Iansitis, while Ionzitis is the family spelling.  Two letters were returned from Italy marked "Deceased."   Envelopes should have notations: "Or Deliver to Next of Kin" or "For Current Occupant of House," so that letters are forwarded.  Spence suggested we send metered mail, as stamps are removed from envelopes and never delivered.

Carol Kwolok (#2040) gave us an overview of Family History Center files.  The IGI (International Genealogical Index) contains names put in by church members, while anyone can submit names to the Ancestral File .

Sister Diane Smith (#1375) has invited Chapter #3 members to attend the meetings of Chapter #19 in Reno.  Some said they’d like to attend.

We talked about the POINT National Conference in Las Vegas and ten indicated they would be going.

Thanks to Bob Chase for his lively auction to raise funds for the mailing "kitty."  Connie Gallina (#1978) won the door prize.

Our next luncheon will be on November 7, 1998 in Occidental, CA, hosted by Elizabeth Mazzotti, and then, in April, 1999, we will meet in Sacramento.

P/S:  Thanks again, Tom, for all your efforts on behalf of us Italian researchers.  Neil and I had lunch in San Carlos with Carlos Chichizola (#3570), who lives in Argentina .  His ancestors came from Quinto al Mare in Genoa , north of our town of Zoagli .  This was another delightful meeting of family.

Sincerely, Mrs. J. Neil Chichizola

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April 19, 1997 Meeting in Campbell, California

June Chichizola (#519), Chairperson/Organizer

Chapter #3 of POINTers in Person met April 19th at Al Castello's Restaurant & Pizzeria in Campbell. We were 51 in number and all Italians at heart! Mickey McGinnis (#1368) hosted our gathering.

We discussed Chapter #11's Southwest Regional Conference Planning Survey, and we will send our comments along to Chuck Panico (#1848) . The group was enthusiastic about the possible Conference! Thirty folks indicated they would like to attend.

Mickey advised us of the Genealogical Room at the Santa Clara Library and its Italian-American Collection. She told of receiving a marriage record from Philadelphia for her great-grandmother's brother from a POINT member. Because of that member, she's aware of the brother's name and the Philadelphia church. She suggested checking godparents names on baptismal and confirmation records as additional sources.

Judy Peterson told us of her trip to Sicily where she met relatives. She took copies of family photos for family identification. "That's me when I was a little girl," a family member told her. Judy was dressed in the wedding clothes of the town and took part in the traditions of the town. Judy said, "I understand about who I am now." Her photo album was enjoyed by everyone.

Someone asked about a group trip to Salt Lake City. Carol Kwolek (#2040) advised that the Genealogical Association of Sacramento will make a trip the week of May 18th to LDS which is open M 7:30-6, T-S 7:30-10:00.

Art Dieli (#3142) and his wife, Alice, spent five months in Caltagirone, Sicily . They began their research at the Comune where records began 1820, then to the San Giorgio Church where the priest opened up the archives for them and gave them free reign. Those archives, written in Latin on parchment, began in 1560. They researched the baptismal records first and then proceeded to the marriage records. They filled in their work sheets every night with new information. They were able to trace their family to 1730.

Kathy Kramer (#2843) attended with her husband, Mike. She received family information from a document admitting her grandfather's brother into an institution. She is looking for a good book on Italian history , information on travel to Sicily and help in translating Italian documents. Al Ferrari's (#2054) guest, Matilde Oliveria, who teaches Italian, was gracious enough to translate them for Kathy!

Toni LaMaritate (#2537) found much information on her father's draft registration card from 1899. She's had to research her surname by looking for various versions of the name.

Bob Chase (#1023) donated Italian items for a successful silent auction with the monies going into the "kitty." Patrick August Found the 1000 lira note under his plate and was given a copy of "The Italians."

We were able to answer questions from those just beginning their Italian research. We share in their enthusiasm in finding their Italian roots.

Our next luncheon is scheduled for October 25th in Stockton hosted by Sarah and Joe Morabito (#1418). Tony DiPasquale (#2143) has agreed to host us in Napa next April.

The talking continued long after the "meeting" and lunch were over and that's the joy of POINTers. Thanks once again, Tom, for making it all possible.

Sincerely, Mrs. J. Neil Chichizola

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October 5, 1996 Meeting in Santa Rosa, California

June Chichizola (#519), Chairperson/Organizer

Chapter #3 of POINTers in Person met October 5, 1996 at Michele’s Restaurant in Santa Rosa. The gathering numbered 49, of which 36 are POINT members. Ten in the group speak Italian, and some are taking Italian classes in Sacramento, San Francisco, Napa, and Palo Alto. Almost everyone has traveled to Italy.
Computer use is popular with our POINT members.

Elizabeth Basile (#1671) hosted our lunch. She discussed her “Pascale Family, From the Hills of Monteforto to the Shores of Brooklyn.” It contains family descendant charts and a biography for each family. And she sold 100 copies to the family members.

Elizabeth Mazzotti (#1084) talked about her Grandfather Giovanni Gonnella who came to America in 1874 from Corlia near Lucca. Her family book is entitled “One Man’s Family from Italy to Occidental (CA).” The family formed a family association, have made up tee shirts and cups, and have 175 members on the mailing list. She told of being raised in an Italian community surrounded by family.

Connie Gallina (#1978) was very interested in both books as she is planning a family history book.

Lou and Jane Bavo (#2207) have visited family in Pedesina and spoke highly of Trafford Cole’s book, “Italian Genealogical Records.”

Carol Kwolek (#2040) is working on the Capestrano town extractions.

Arthur and Alice Dieli , plus daughter Nancy, met our POINT member’s Sal and Judy Dieli (#1058). Arthur met Sal’s nephew in the family town of Caltagirone. Arthur is planning another trip there and hopes to make the family connection.

Chandler Cameron (#2651) has finally found the Italian family town and requested form letter for Italy.

Bob and Lillieanne Chase (#1023) told of writing to Ianziti folks to Australia, but the letter was returned marked “undeliverable.” About a year later he received a letter addressed only to his home address which simply asked “What do you want?” Bob responded, and he found a cousin in Australia from the family town of San Giogio la Molara. ( Webmaster Note:The person in Australia who originally responded was informed of Bob’s original letter by a MAILMAN, and that started the ball rolling!!)

Katie Murphy (#2564) found the Pannesi phone pages in the Genoa phone book.

Spence Burton (#1889) told of researching in Santa Margherita di Belice and Sciacca where his wife, Cathy , said, “We visited the living and the dead (cemetery).” Spence received a document from the town clerk and then showed her a large computer print-out whereupon the clerk’s eyes grew large. Cathy told her, “Il fanatico!” Cathy will teach Italian in the Spring at her high school, and she’s very excited about it.

Spence showed us a Study Guide entitled “Italian Americans, Looking Back, Moving Forward,” from the University of the State of New York in Albany which sells for $5. It looks like an excellent book.

Angelo and Sara Granzotti (#2969) stopped by to say hello. Angelo called me regarding the Santa Rosa lunch. As we talked, I told him of the Chichizola’s from Zoagli and my problem of obtaining Tomaso’s death certificate. Angelo attended the merchant marine school in Camogli, has a friend still living there, and will ask him to go to the Zoagli chiesa to obtain the certificate. This is just another way that POINT works for all of us.

Leona August (#2104) is researching Leonetti near Cosenza and also the surname Garcea. She asked her brother, Larry, to write a brief story about Uncle Bobby who was an Air Force pilot killed in WWII. Well, the brief story became 70 pages filled with much information supplied Larry from around the world.

We were all pleased to see Sister Diane Smith’s (#1375) story about Nona Brigida from Cavaso del Tomba in the summer 1996 issue of POINT.

Our next luncheon is scheduled for April 19, 1997 in San Jose hosted by Mickey McGinnis (#1360).

Needless to say, we enjoyed being together and sharing our Italian ancestors, research, and stories. Thanks once again for making us family.


Mrs. J. Neil Chichizola
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