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Friday, January 10, 2014

Extracting Data from Vital Records

How many copies of vital records do you have?  Birth, Marriage and Death records are the bread and butter of genealogy research and family history.  Do you really read everything that is mentioned on those documents?  I thought that I did...until I read the Sicilian matrimony records of my 2nd great grandparents one more time.  I had glazed over something very important the previous times that I read these wonderful pages.

I had assumed that my 2nd great grandmother, Salvatora LoCoco, was born in Campofelice, the same town that she had been married.  You know what happens when you assume something.....don't you?

Here is the copy of the document that had revealed what I had missed :

Salvadora Coco, highlighted in mid page location, is followed by her information :
She was single and at the age of Twenty-two (ventidue), born in Villalba (nata), living in Campofelice (domicilate), daughter of Nicolo (figlia di) etc.

So now we know, she was born in Villalba, not Campofelice.  But where is Villalba?  A quick search tells me : Villalba (Sicilian: Villarba) is a comune (municipality) in the Province of Caltanissetta in the Italian region Sicily, located about 51 km northwest of Caltanissetta.

The couple was married in 1857.  The documents mentions that the bride was age 22 years.  To find her birth record, I would have to search for the nascite (birth record) for approximately the time period of 1834-1836.

Remember, read, and read and read once again. Don't miss out on important information.  Don't Assume any piece of information.  Documentation is paramount.

End of lesson.

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