Often, at some point in our existence, we wondered “why I call someone uncle or cousin, if I have no recent relationship of kinship to which I can trace it except through: my grandmother said that…, this aunt claimed that kinship comes from…”.
Having reached almost the retirement age and having figured out how to be active, making me useful, I remembered that in Longhitano families there were several nicknames, “ ‘nghiuri” in Sicilian dialects, but there was still a sense of kinship, even if distant. “Checchi”, “Cesari”, “Bizzuni”, “Chicchitti” were recurring names in family talk, but the ancient ties, progenitors, had now lost, resulting in fragmentation of the trunk of the family tree, as was the case for "Chestnut of one hundred horses " - it is quite difficult to review the unity.
My botanical experience has pushed me to rebuild my family tree, extending it to those who have had kinship ties through marriages.
In order to achieve this desire, in 2007 I asked to the Bronte Mother Church’s Archipriest of that time, Don Saitta, permission to consult parish archives, creating new indexes of various volumes on computer support using Excel sheets. The initiative was well received, the result was a 10-year work for transcription and then rebuilding the genealogical trees of all the Bronte’s families.
This work involved the transcription of: 84,698 baptism records ranging from 1737 to 1923 and 19,899 wedding records ranging from 1729 to 1933, which gave rise to two databases needed for setting the next job.
At this point there was the problem of making this work available to anyone who wanted to do research on his family, or to answer the questions that had arisen.
It was necessary the collaboration of a computer expert who was able to organize everything. Time ago I was talking to a young man who, having learned of my job, was looking for informations about his wife's ancestors. Discussing I realized that I had known the person I had been looking for: he was the computer engineer Paolo Campagna, who declared he was excited to collaborate with Bronte Insieme to make the archive I created available.
His activity was precisely to do genealogy research and therefore from the collaboration between The Genealogist and Bronte Insieme, the opportunities for:
- Making parish records usable, preserving them from wear;
- Giving anyone the chance to do genealogy research.
But my work has not ended up here, I'm rebuilding all the Bronte’s families in order to realize the genealogical trees. These data can be viewed on the My Heritage / Brontecittà genealogy site.
Nunzio Longhitano (1936-2019)