On Saturday, both my husband and daughter were away from home, on a trip to Florida to visit my in-laws. I had the whole house to myself and what did I do? I spent the day with a bunch of dead people on FamilySearch!
I was researching for a client whose ancestors came from Chiusa Sclafani, Palermo Province, Sicily. I discovered that FamilySearch has church records for this town digitized onto their website. They are not indexed yet, so you have to search record by record, which can be a bit tedious. But when it’s Saturday and you don’t have the microfilm at hand, you deal with it.
I started with the client’s great-grandfather, Emmanuele Burgarino, and found his baptism in 1884. I then found the marriage record of his parents in 1883, and the marriage record for each set of paternal grandparents going back for six generations, to the client’s seventh great-grandparents, Giuseppe Burgarino and Anna Cascio, who were married on October 6, 1697! In just a couple of weeks it will be the 316th anniversary of their marriage. Along the way, I found that the name went back and forth between Burgarino and Bulgarino. Always keep your eyes open for variations!
I have the names of Giuseppe Burgarino’s parents, but I couldn’t find their marriage record. It turns out that all of their children were baptized in a different church in Chiusa Sclafani and that church only has baptisms available on microfilm and online so I can’t find their marriage record. But that may not be the end of the line for this family….I still have death records to search and the rest of the baptisms and who knows what else will turn up on FamilySearch!
If you haven’t used this incredibly valuable FREE resource, I highly recommend you check out www.familysearch.org to see if there are online records or microfilms available for your ancestral town. Happy searching!