Monday, January 16, 2012

Susan's Snoops: 1900 Census Record Found- Guit Rocferti

I had been intermittently searching for a link to connect my husband's great grandmother, Sebastiana Roppolo, to her husband.  Sebastiana arrived in America (from Italy) on October 30, 1897 with two children- Giovanni Roccaforte, age 14, and Francesca Roccaforte, age 7.  I already had the census records linking Giovanni, known in America as "John", to my husband's mother, Lena Mary Rockforte.  Some Roccaforte researchers had Sebastiana's husband listed as Gaetana Roccaforte, but no evidence connecting the two together.

I had been searching census records using the possible spellings of the surname (Roccaforte, Rockforte, Rockford, Rocford, etc.) but the results were fruitless.  I decided to try again last night.  I went to and typed in the key word "Rockforte".  Of course, many possible records were generated but after browsing only a few minutes, I finally found what I think is a possible connection:

1900 U.S. Census, Iberville Parish, Louisiana; Ward 2, Page 4  (original image cropped for easier reading)

This record shows me the following information:

Rocferti, Guit, born Mar 1861- age 38- married 20 years- born in Italy- both parents born in Italy- year of immigration 1891

Rocferti, Bastiana, wife, born Jul 1861- age 39- mother of 10 children, 7 children living- born in Italy- both parents born in Italy- year of immigration 1897

Rocferti, Nick, son, born Dec 1882- immigrated 1897
Rocferti, John, son, born Oct 1884 in Italy
Rocferti, Joseph, son, born Feb 1888 in Italy
Rocferti, Francis, daughter, born Sept 1891 in Italy
Rocferti, Margerette, daughter, born June 1898 in Louisiana

The census doesn't show the year of immigration for children John, Joseph and Francis.  It seems possible, however, that this record connects Sebastiano to her husband, Gaetana Roccaforte when I compare the information:

Passenger Ship List:  ( New Orleans Passenger Lists, 1820-1945)
Port of Departure: Leghorn and Palermo, Italy Ship Name: Montebello Port of Arrival: New Orleans, Louisiana; Last Residence: Roccamena
Arrived in America on October 30, 1897:
Sebastiano Roppolo, age 42
Giovanni Roccaforte, age 14
Francesca Roccaforte, age 7

From these records, I have derived possibilities and questions:

Sebastiano from the ship passenger list could be Bastiana in the census record.
Giovanni from the ship passenger list could be John in the census record.
Francesca from the ship passenger list could be Francis in the census record.

1.  The census record indicates that Nick Rocferti immigrated to America in 1897- yet why isn't he listed on the above passenger list?  Task:  Search passenger ship lists again.
2.  When did Joseph arrive in America?  In 1891, he would have been about 3 years old.  In 1897, he would have been about 9 years old.  Did he arrive with his father? his mother?  other relatives?  Task:  Search passenger ship lists again.
3.  The above census record indicates Bastiana is the mother of 7 children living- who are the other 2 children?  If Bastiana and Guit had been married 20 years, then they married abt. 1880.  Did they have children older than Nick who had moved out of the household already, or perhaps children living with another relative?  Task: search census records 1900 for possible connections.

More tasks:
1.  Attempt to obtain death record, obits, cemetery records for Giovanni "John" Rockforte (Roccaforte)
2. Attempt to obtain death record, obits, cemetery records for Sebastiana Roppolo Rockforte (Roccaforte)
3.  Search for further census records on this family
4.  Search 1891 passenger ship lists for Guit (Gaetana, Guitano) Roccaforte (and other various spellings).

I'm just beginning to really delve into the research on this family branch.  Does anyone have suggestions as to where/what further records I should search for them?  Can you derive any further possibilities or conclusions to the information above that I have missed?  Your input would be greatly appreciated ;)

No comments:

Post a Comment