The Graffagninos of Salaparuta

Family A

Last updated 11.Oct.2008 16:30 ET

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Family A
Family B | Family C | Family D | Family E | Family F | Family G | Family H | Family I | Family J | Family K | Family L | Family M | Family X

Family A

[see family tree] is comprised of the first six of the twelve currently known generations of descendants of Don Alerio Graffagnino, who was born in Salaparuta, Sicily, in 1655.  Almost all of this genealogical information comes from church records in Salaparuta, being maintained by Father Baldassare Graffagnino.

Six generations of Graffagninos takes us into the nineteenth century, a time when many family members emigrated to foreign soil.  One of the purposes of this web site is to identify as many of these emigrating families as possible, and to bring together and to reconnect the geographically separated family members.

Because of the large number of family members which have been identified thus far - now more than 1300, with more being added daily - I have chosen to organize and to group individuals into a two-tiered tree structure, with "Family A" being the top tier, containing the first six generations of descendants, followed by a second tier consisting of various "sub-Families", made up of whatever descendants of Generation Six can be identified and documented.  These individuals will be linked to a separate web page containing all of the known descendants of that individual.

See Hints and Navigational Tips for more detailed information about the structure of the web site, how to find specific individuals, and how to navigate through the growing volume of data.

Family B

(see family tree) is headed by Gioacchino Graffagnino, born in 1820, and his wife Maria Avvocato.   Joseph G. Graffagnino of Old Bridge, NJ, Jack Graffagnino, of Lynnbrook, NY, and Anne Puleo Hoops, of Flushing, NY, are our current contacts for this family.  Their grandparents, Gioacchino Graffagnino and Teresa Gruppuso, first came to the U.S. in 1890.  When their children all died, Gioacchino and Teresa returned to Salaparuta, started a new family, then came back to the U.S. in 1908, settling in the Long Island, New York area.

Father Baldassare Graffagnino is himself a member of Family B.  His grandparents were Giuseppe Graffagnino and Antonia Gruppuso - brother and (more than likely) sister to Gioacchino Graffagnino and Teresa Gruppuso.  This means that Father Baldassare Graffagnino is a second cousin to Joe and his sister and two older brothers on both sides of the family.

Family C

(see family tree) is headed by Pietro Graffagnino born in 1837, and his wife, Rosa DiSimone.  Information about current members of this family has been provided by Joseph A. Graffagnino of Brooklyn, New York.  Pietro was born in Salaparuta and died there in 1934.  Those of his children who came to the U.S. also settled in the Long Island, New York area. Recently added contributors to Family C include Lee Fiducia Hartmann of St. Augustine, FL, Anthony M. Santare of Alemeda, CA, Pauline Bail of Chicopee, MA, and Pauline's sister Stephaine Gallagher of New Windsor, NY.

Family D

[see family tree) This is one of our "newer" families, another Long Island branch, whose connection to the rest of the family has recently been identified. Peter Graffagnino, an elementary school principal in Lynbrook, NY, found this web site on the Internet, and has sent us the information shown on this family chart.

Peter has finally provided us with some reliable information regarding our most "famous" cousin, Tony Graffanino, a major leaue baseball player now with the Boston Red Sox. Peter is Tony's first cousin (once removed).

Peter says his grandfather, Stefano, and great-grandfather, Carmelo, came to the U. S. from Palermo about 1860.  Information since received from Father Graffagnino in Salaparuta has identified Peter's great-great grandfather as a member of Family A, generation 6: Stefano G and Maria Garacci.  This does now make it official - if you can find your name on any family chart, you are a real live cousin of Tony G!

As for Tony, we may have to forgive him for removing the "g" from his last name a couple of years ago. We hear it was to avoid nagging problems with unenlightened reporters and stadium announcers!  (If you act fast, you can still get copies of his minor league baseball cards which still contain the "g"!)

Family E

[see family tree] is one of our more exciting finds, sent to us by Eric Graffagnino, who found us while surfing the internet.  Eric is currently working in Montreal, but his home and family are in France, mostly around Paris. After hearing about this French connection, my uncle, Dr. Paul Ned Graffagnino, sent me a copy of a letter which had been sent to his son, Paul, in San Francisco several years ago by François Graffagnino in Paris.

It turns out that Paul and François' son had met quite by chance in an art gallery in San Francisco several years ago at a showing of art works by Tom Graffagnino (my very own brother)!  The two exchanged addresses, and, soon thereafter, Paul received a letter from Paris.  The letter documented several generations of French Graffagninos.  We have since located this family line in our charts from Salaparuta.

The letter from François indicated that his father, Erasmé, was the younger brother of Dr. Peter Graffagnino in New Orleans, Paul's grandfather (and mine also). François named Paul's dad, Paul Ned, and my dad, Peter Carl, as his first cousins. This is not, in fact, the case.  François' father, Erasmé, was born in 1881, the same year that his own father, Antoine, died.  My grandfather, Dr. Peter Graffagnino, was not born until five years later.  The two were, however, fourth cousins, according to our current charts (see below).

Family F

[see family tree] has been sent to us by Joseph A. Graffagnino of Port Neches, Texas.  Joe is descended from Gioacchino Graffagnino (b. Salaparuta, 1817) and his wife Nicolina Garacci. Joe's great grandparents, Antonino Graffagnino and his wife, Francesca Lombardo, came to the U.S. through New Orleans in 1892 with their three sons and a daughter, and settled in Patterson, LA.  Gioacchino, the oldest son and Joe's grandfather, later met and married Rosa Roccaforte in about 1912.  The Roccaforte family had also come from Salaparuta through Ellis Island and Wisconsin several years earlier before ending up in Louisiana.  Gioacchino and Rosa eventually moved to Port Arthur, Texas, in 1914, and raised nine children. Their seventh child, Steve, was Joe's father.  For a more complete version of this family saga, see Note 6.

Family G

[see family tree] This family is our official GRAFFAGNINI family connection. Our original contribution was sent to us by Angie Radosti-Orellana of Metairie, LA, who is descended from a line of Graffagninos who resided in Contessa Entellina, a neighboring village only a few miles from Salaparuta.  This branch of the family, as we have only recently learned, adopted the alternate spelling of the family name, Graffagnini.

Angie's great grandmother was Vincenza Anna Graffagnini, wife of Pasquale Radosti, and the 10th child of Gioacchino Graffagnini and his second wife, Antonina Caruso.  Gioacchino, with the help of his first wife, Margherita Reres (or Perez), and second wife Antonia produced a family record 19 children.  We welcome Angie to the party, and thank her for sharing her information.

The second contibution to Family G comes to us from a cousin in Rome, Massimiliano Lorenzetti, who first informed us that the entire Contessa Entellina family began spelling the name as "Graffagnini" shortly after migrating from Salaparuta back in the nineteenth century.  Father Graffagnino has confirmed that he posses documents from this branch of the family where the name was actually entered as "Graffagnini(o)". Massimiliano is Angie's third cousin, as his great grandfather, Nicolò, and Angie's great grandnother, Vincenza Anna, were brother and sister.

Family H

[see family tree] includes my co-conspirator in this genealogical adventure, Joel P. Graffagnino of Kenner, LA.  Joel is descended from Family H head, Antonino Graffagnino (b. Salaparuta 1818) and wife, Maria Cangelosi, who were his great grandparents.  Joel's grandfather, Simone Graffagnino, after marrying his fourth cousin and my grandfather's older sister, Francesca Graffagnino [see Family I], came to the U.S. in 1888 (approx.) with his father-in-law, Pietro Graffagnino [see chart below], to earn money for one of the following reasons (select family story of your choice): A) to repay the church in Salaparuta for a cracked church bell; B) to pay for a silver halo for the church's statue of St. Giuseppe, C) to earn money to bring the rest of the family to the U.S.; or D) all of the above.  The effort, whichever it was, was ultimately successful, and in 1892 a large contingent of family members boarded the ship in Palermo and headed for New Orleans to join Pietro and Simone.

Family I

[see family tree] is the one to which I belong (Robert D. Graffagnino of Columbus, OH, website designer, content editor, and maintenance person).  My branch of the family is descended from Pietro Graffagnino, who was my great-grandfather [see Family I].  My grandfather was Francesca's youngest brother, Peter, who sailed to New Orleans at age six with his mother, Angelina Tusa, and various brothers, sisters, and cousins.  Peter later became a prominent New Orleans physician, head of the Department of Gynecology at the LSU School of Medicine in New Orleans, and thoroughbred race horse owner.

Family J

[see family tree] This family is our second GRAFFAGNINI family connection. Family information was sent to us by Van Donovan of Riverside, CA. Like Family G, this family is descended from the same family of Graffagninis who resided in Contessa Entellina, a neighboring village only a few miles from Salaparuta. Most members of this family sailed from Palermo to New Orleans in the 1890's.

Family K

[see family tree] has been sent to us by Vito Graffagnino, who lives in Bristol, England, and whose family is scattered from Santa Margherita de Belice, which is just a few miles from Salaparuta, to Concord, CA.

Family L

[see family tree] Information coming in from members of the Lipari/Lapare family, descended from Felicia Graffagnino and Giuseppe Lipari. Felicia was the sister of the three brothers who head up Families C, D, and F. This information comes to us from Megan Lapari of Baton Rouge, LA, and her cousin, Lucien Lipari, of Opelousas, LA.

Family M

[see family tree] Our most recent addition to the Family Tree, this information comes to us from members of the Mangogna/Rose family, who are descended from Caterina Graffagnino and Pietro Mangogna. Caterina was the oldest daughter of Antonino Graffagnino and Francesca Sancetta. The story of Caterina's family, whose mother died when Caterina was a young girl, is told in the family notes by Father Graffagnino [see Note 5]. Caterina's younger half-brother, Gioacchino, born after her father re-married, is the head of Family E, which eventually emigrated to France. The family information comes to us from Elana Rose of Chicago, IL.

Family X

[see family tree] has been compiled from the records of Father Baldassare Graffagnino and consists of all individuals descended from generation 6 (in Family A) for whom we as yet have no present day information. If and when any individual contacts us and claims to be descended from a family member shown in Family X, a new family will be added to the charts (as soon as new genealogical data is sent in).

  Family A 172
The following NAVIGATIONAL SYMBOLS can be used
to expand and/or to limit the number of individuals and
generations displayed in the chart below, as well as to
reposition the family members in the display window.
all Expands the current chart to display all generations,
and positions the clicked individual at the top of the display window.
parent Limits the display to the generation containing the individual clicked,
and places the individual's parent at the top of the window.
children Limits the display to include the clicked individual's children, and
positions the clicked individual at the top of the display window.

Nav Family A date and place of birth date and place of death
or residence
all "Papa" Graffagnino children [Family A] [see Note 6] 1620 Salaparuta, Sicily  
allparent 1Don Alerio Graffagnino 1 child 1655 Salaparuta, Sicily  
  1mGiovanna Rinado c.1664  
allparent 2Magistrò Pietro Graffagnino 1 child 1685 Salaparuta, Sicily 17.May.1740
  2mLaura Cavallaro c.1685  
allparent 3Alerio Graffagnino c.1710 Salaparuta, Sicily  
allparent 3Giovanna Graffagnino 12.Mar.1712 Salaparuta, Sicily   
allparent 3Giuseppe Graffagnino 20.Feb.1714 Salaparuta, Sicily  
allparent 3Giuseppa Graffagnino 20.May.1715 Salaparuta, Sicily  
allparent 3Antonino Graffagnino 8 children 24.Apr.1715/16 Salaparuta, Sicily  
  3mAnna Perna c.1716 Salaparuta, Sicily  
allparent 4Pietro Antonio Graffagnino 29.Jan.1743 Salaparuta, Sicily  
allparent 4Laura Graffagnino 30.Jul.1744 Salaparuta, Sicily  
allparent 4Pietro Andrea Graffagnino 22.Feb.1746 Salaparuta, Sicily  
allparent 4Pietro Giuseppe Graffagnino 15.Mar.1752 Salaparuta, Sicily  
allparent 4Gioacchino Corrado Graffagnino 1 child 15.May.1755 Salaparuta, Sicily 21.Dec.1846 Contessa Entellina
  4mVincenza Navarra c.1755  
allparent 4Laura Rosa Graffagnino 24.Jun.1757 Salaparuta, Sicily  
allparent 4Gioacchino Giocamo Graffagnino 11 children 22.Mar.1759 Salaparuta, Sicily  
  4mCaterina Culmone (2.Mar.1783) 1761 Salaparuta, Sicily 1.Aug.1819 Salaparuta, Sicily
allparent 4Giuseppe Maria Graffagnino 2.Jan.1761 Salaparuta, Sicily  
allparent 3Giuseppa Graffagnino 14.Sep.1719 Salaparuta, Sicily  
allparent 3Nunzia Graffagnino 25.Mar.1722 Salaparuta, Sicily  
allparent 3Domenico Graffagnino 1 child 19.Nov.1724 Salaparuta, Sicily  
  3mGiuseppa Buscaglia (27.Oct.1844) c.1724  
allparent 4Pietro Graffagnino 7 children 1.Apr.1754 Salaparuta, Sicily 1.Apr.1814
  4mVincenza Mangoglia (12.Aug.1783) c.1754  
  4mGiuseppa Maltese (24.Jan.1796) c.1775  
allparent 3Aulina Graffagnino 8.Jan.1727 Salaparuta, Sicily  
allparent 3Anna Graffagnino 8.Jan.1728 Salaparuta, Sicily  
Nav Family A date and place of birth date and place of death
or residence

If you are interested in contributing to this collection and becoming part of the effort to reconnect the family, please contact:  

Family A
Family B | Family C | Family D | Family E | Family F | Family G | Family H | Family I | Family J | Family K | Family L | Family M | Family X

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