Italian Ancestors
From the surrounding villages of Decollatura 
in Catanzaro, Calabria 
and Pedivigliano in Cosenza

Updated April 13, 2008


All of these names, along with many others, are prominent in the surrounding areas of Decollatura and in Pedivigliano. My internet cousin, Sam Tomaino, and I have extracted all the birth, marriage and death records (1810-1860) microfilmed by the LDS for Decollatura and reconstructed all of the families, in addition to our own lines. Our research of our own direct lines and extended branches showed us it was necessary to extract and database all the records because of the many inter family-to-family and cousin-to-cousin marriages we had discovered. We were finding we were related to nearly all the families in that area.

Should you discover your ancestors were also from the Decollatura area, especially if your information dates back to 1810-1860 records we have, we would love to hear from you. Furthermore we have the Pedivigliano records from 1810-1910 and can assist there.  If your Italian ancestors settled in Carbondale, PA. or Lockport, NY., drop us a line, chances are we are related.

Read more about Decollatura, the surnames, surrounding villages and, see a map of the area:


Look at pictures of Cerrisi, compliments of two terrific guys, Peter and Frank Tomaino:

See Pics of Cerrisi


My grandfather, Nicola BONACCI was born in Cerrisi on April 8, 1885 to Pietro BONACCI and Chiara CERRA. Chiara Cerra with her son Nicola Bonacci and her stepdaughter Michelina Bonacci  left Cerrisi via Naples and arrived in NY aboard the EMS  on Feb 11, 1893.

My grandmother, Maria Concetta MOLINARO was born on Mulberry St. in the Bowery on Manhattan Island in New York City on December 8, 1891, six months after her parents, Salvatore MOLINARO and Peppina AMBROSI, left Cerrisi via Naples and arrived in NY aboard the Cachemire on June 2, 1891.

Both families eventually settled in CARBONDALE, PA. where my grandparents were married on November 21, 1906.

Mary Jo's Ancestors
An Ahnentafel report starting with my mother.

For those of you not familiar with the Ahnentafel numbering system, it's quite simple. Each individual has a number, starting with 1. The parents of each person can be determined by multiplying their number by 2, for the father; and by 2 plus 1, for the mother.

Sam's grandfather, Salvatore TOMAINO was born in Tomaini on February 28, 1896 to Angelo Antonio TOMAINO and Angela Maria TOMAINO. Salvatore left Tomaini via Naples and arrived in NY aboard the Prinzess Irene in April, 1913.

Sam's grandmother, Elena Gilda LACOSTA was born in Tarrs, Pa. on February 14, 1906 to Antonio Stefano LACOSTA and Albina MOSCARDELLI.

Both families settled in Lockport, NY.

 Sam's Ancestors
An Ahnentafel report starting with his father.

Sam also has connections to Ofena in L'Aquila, Abruzzo. 

Read more about the surnames, villages being researched and see a map of the area:


To reach both Sam and I, use the email link at the bottom of this page.

Several of our newly discovered cugini, that Sam and I have provided ancestral information to, have set up their own web pages. Visit their sites below. You may need to use your browser BACK button to return.

Joe Grandinetti
Joe has done much to help me reconstruct and link the families in Carbondale, Pa. by sharing any information he finds; he's as obsessed about it as I am! We were happy to provide Joe with his ancestry from Decollatura and have been working with him in establishing his Soveria Mannelli lines.

Gerry Serianni
Gerry is researching his Serianni and Morasco ancestors in nearby Soveria Mannelli. We hope one day to make a connection.

Miranda Cerra
Miranda is researching her ancestors from Cerrisi, my grandfather's home village.

Over the years that Sam and I have been working on our Italian ancestors, we have been in touch with scores of others, too numerous to mention, who share our common names and towns. We thank each and every one of you for the information that you have provided and continue to provide us; information that in many cases proved vital in our efforts to connect others whose genealogical information fell short of the records we had.

In particular we owe special thanks to:

Our Spouses: Dave and Debby. What can I say that they already don't know? Thanks for your support, understanding and love.

Jennie Collins, Rachel Bianco and my mother, Clara Rosipko for all the vivid details they provide on Whose Who In Carbondale which has helped connect many of those families who settled there.

Carolyn Epps for her endless efforts in gathering information via phone calls, personal interviews, driving hundreds of miles to search cemeteries and spending countless hours looking for obits. Our western NY gopher who never says no! It took a long time for us to discover our common ancestors, but we finally found our cousinhood connection.

John and Rosemarie Tomaino Falvo, her father Frank Tomaino and family friend Frank Pane for their insight and assistance. A special thanks to John and Rosemarie for translating the poetry of Salvatore Tomaino (Sam's grandfather), which we all enjoyed.
Please visit my webpage to learn about a wonderful book of poems written by John about Decollatura. All of you who share our passion not only for our roots, but also for our hunger to read about our ancestral lands will be touched by his words in

Memories of the Past.

Helen Gigliotti of Utica, NY. for all her memories and her daughter Connie for being our email intermediary.

Sherryl Tomaino - Sam and I thank you for the Kudo, the return link and your endless efforts to find others who share our names and towns, gathering information and sending them our way.

Lora DeNardis who translated "Decollatura and Motta Santa Lucia, Two Towns of Reventino" and graciously shared it with us, in addition to her efforts to procure copies of several books from Italy which have provided us with clues to enhance our research project.

Karen Rutkowski Scalzo of Massachusetts and her mother-inlaw Maria Marasco Scalzo and Maria's mother Carmelina Tucci Marasco for all the information they have provided and the stories.

Lorenzo Gigliotti for his GIGLIOTTI INTERNATIONAL website, his continual efforts to send Gigliotti's from Decollatura our way and his translation assistance.

Tony Gigliotti for his translation assistance and his words which best describe what we have accomplished:
"....welcome to the wonderful world of making connections with your roots...hundreds of years back, and thousands of miles around...thanks mostly to the indefatigable labors of Sam and Mary Jo." And many others, I might add.

This page was created on April 20, 1996

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