Giuseppe “Joseph” Cirabisi was born on March 5, 1873, in Sicily, Italy. He had one son and two daughters with Leonarda (Lena) Gerace or Geraci between 1909 and 1916. He died in 1950 at the age of 77.
On the free FamilySearch.org website his ID# is L1FX-D4W
Here is a recap on an original document showing when Joseph immigrated at the age of 10 to the USA arriving on November 3, 1013. (Note that census records and other government records showed little regard to spelling, this might explain why his father’s name is listed as Tirabisi instead of Cirabisi?!)
At the age of 35 years old, he stated for New York records that he was employed as a Bracciante (translation is farm hand , hired hand or laborer.
When Alice “Christine” Thompson (she used her middle name) was born on June 10, 1905, in Lawrence, Mississippi, her father, Ransom, was 48, and her mother, Susan “Sudie” Arabella Spurlock Thompson, was 43. I believe that she was the youngest of 8 children.
Her oldest son Samuel Henry Barnes was born on January 20, 1931, in Lamar County, Mississippi. Her second son Thompson Eugene “Genie” was born on August 27, 1935 and tragically died at age 12, in Mississippi. Her third son Arthur “Dale” (he used his middle name) was born on July 18, 1942, in Hattiesburg, Mississippi.
Sometimes, when I trace our family story, I have to look at other family members to find out more information about one of our direct ancestors. In other words, our direct ancestor may not have been researched as thoroughly as one of their children, siblings or another relative of theirs. The photo above, is a 4th great uncle so he is a child of our direct ancestor and 4th great grandfather Henry.
Henry and Frances Stuckey Scarborough were the 4th great grandparents of my brother-in-law. It was Henry and Frances’ child Sarah “Kizzie” Scarborough that would become the direct line to my brother-in-law’s family. “Kizzie” was a younger sister to Alfred who is pictured above.
The first thing I notice from the photo caption above is that Henry (who wasthe 4th great grandfather of Christopher Barnes) had a plantation in the Sumter District of South Carolina. It turns out that Henry’s father also owned a plantation.
When Eugene Ludlow Barnes was born on August 5, 1906, in Bond, Mississippi, his father, Samuel Tilden Barnes, was 29 and his mother, Mittie Campbell, was 23.
Eugene was only 2 years old when his father Samuel died when he was only 32 years old.
After Samuel (Eugene’s father) died (because something fell on his foot in the sawmill where he worked and he got blood poisoning,) his second wife Mittie Campbell Barnes (Eugene’s mother), petitioned the courts to establish a will for her late husband.
Mittie Campbell Barnes was the biological mother of Eugene and of his sister Hilma Barnes. Mittie’s petition to the court eventually wins her rights to all of Samuel Barnes’ property.
Eugene’s mother, Mittie, goes on to marry a second time to a man named Henry Little. Mittie and Henry have 3 girls who then become Eugene’s half sisters. I think you will like the names of these 3 half sisters: Jonnie Lee Little, Sammie Lou Little, and Henry Alice Little.
Eugene had another half sister because his father had been married and had one child before he married Mittie. This half sister was the child of Samuel Barnes and Mary Letha Galloway. Her name was Aletha Barnes.
Eugene’s obituary shows some of these relationships:
Here is a timeline of some events in Eugene’s life
1902 birth of half-sister Aletha Barnes (child of Samuel Barnes and Letha Galloway)
1906 birth of Eugene L. Barnes in Mississippi
1908 birth of sister Hilma Gertrude Barnes
1909 death of father Samuel Tilden Barnes
1910 US census shows Eugene is living with his mother Mittie and her brother Arthur and his sister Hilma on Pearl Street in Columbia City, Mississippi
1917 birth of half-sister Jonnie Lee Little (child of Henry Little and Mittie Campbell)
1919 birth of half-sister Sammie Lou Little (child of Henry Little and Mittie Campbell)
1920 US census shows Eugene is 13 years old and living in the house of his step-father and mother.
1922 birth of half-sister Henry Alice (child of Henry Little and Mittie Campbell)
1930 Eugene is living with his step-father and his mother. He is age 23 and is a teacher in the public schools in Columbia, Marion, Mississippi
1931 birth of son Samuel Henry Barnes
1936 birth of son Thompson E. Barnes
1940 US census shows Eugene is living in Hattiesburg, Mississippi with his wife and his sons Samuel and Thompson. He is a school teacher.
1942 birth of son Arthur Dale Barnes
1946 article in the Hattiesburg American Newspaper that Sheriff EL Barnes responded to multiple fatality accident.
1948 death of son Thompson E. Barnes
1948 City directory of Hattiesburg shows that Eugene is with his wife and is employed as a deputy sheriff.
1948 Deputy Sheriff EL Barnes is in the Hattiesburg American Newspaper after breaking up a cattle theft ring.
1949 Deputy Sheriff EL Barnes is in the Hattiesburg American News after a 2 hour shoot out with a 29 year old man who was charged with intent to kill.
1949 Deputy Sheriff EL Barnes is in the Hattiesburg American Newspaper after raiding a moonshine distillery.
1951 article in the Hattiesburg American News about EL Barnes responding as sheriff to a woman who killed her husband.
1951 article in the Clarion Ledger Newspaper about Sheriff EL Barnes who had to chase by gunpoint two men who were cracking safes.
1951 article in the Hattiesburg American Newspaper stating that EL Barnes will not renew his expired tenure as sheriff.
1953 City directory for Hattiesburg shows that Eugene is with his wife and is employed at Ingass Ship Yard. Their residence address is 114 W. 4th
When Angelina “Angie” Cirabisi was born on September 6, 1909, in New York City, her father, Giuseppe “Joseph”, was 35, and her mother, Leonarda “Lena” Gerace Cirabisi, was only 21 years old.
ANGIE’S FATHER: Angie’s father, Joseph Cirabisi, was born in Italy. He was 33 years old when he arrived at Ellis Island on the S.S. Algeria. As he entered Ellis Island, he stated that his occupation was stone worker and that his last place of residence was Castelvetrano, Italy. His ship had departed from a port in Naples on 17 January 1907 and arrived at Ellis Island on 4 February 1907. He recorded that he was coming to join his uncle Guiseppe Sanfilippo in Brooklyn, New York.
In 1917-1918, men in America were required to register for the draft. I found the document below. Melrose Street is where Joseph lived when he filled out this form and that street is not new in the family story and I found it in many documents.
Another official record that I found was a 1925 New York State census record. At the time of that census, Joseph was 51 years old and was listed as doing “cement blocks.” He was living on Melrose Street with his wife Lena and daughters Angie and Antoinette. He records his citizenship status as alien. I had to do some history lessons to figure that one out. Why would an alien register for the US draft? Well, it turns out that you had to register for the draft if you were an alien residing in the United States! Go figure!
ANGIE’S MOTHER Angie’s mother was Leonarda (Lena) Gerace. Lena was born in Partana, Italy.
Lena traveled to the states at the age of 25 leaving on the ship Luisiana from a port in Naples, Campania, Italy. She listed her last place of residence as Partanna, Trapani. She arrived at Ellis Island on 15 Oct. 1907. (Frank had arrived in February of that same year.)
In the 1925 New York state census, Lena claims she is of alien status.
It was so hard for me to find any good information on Lena. Anne Bivona Barnes had told us that Lena had a brother Gaspare. I was able to find some information on him and will continue as time allows to trace Lena’s family and ancestry through information available on her brother.
ANGIE’S SISTER Angie’s sister was Antoinette Cirabisi. Antoinette was born in approx. 1916. She was engaged to be married but sadly died before the wedding, at the age of 23, from a heart condition. Her date of death was 18 March 1939. Until her death, she had been employed as a bookkeeper. She was buried at St. John’s cemetery.
ANGIE Angie died in Michigan and her death date was recorded as 10 December 1987 and on that same certificate, her date of birth, was shown to be 27 September 1909.
Where was Angie born? Anne Bivona Barnes recalls that Angie was born in NYC so that is probably the case, but I did find a trip that brought Angie and her mother Lena through Ellis Island on 13 June 1913. This was on the ship the Principe Di Pimonte that left from the port of Palermo.
Ancestry reminds us when doing research on Italian ancestors to remember that they did travel back and forth. In other cases of immigration from European countries, people had fled from Europe to the United States to avoid persecution BUT the reason that so many people left Italy was almost entirely economic. That simply means, the Italian ancestors had every reason to go back to visit family, dream of returning to Italy and then often returning again to the states.
At the time that Angie’s family moved to the United States, the Italian unified government was encouraging people in Southern Italy to leave – not enough resources were available for the population. Also, the United States at that time had a labor shortage and were encouraging Italians to immigrate.
In 1925, in the state of New York census, Angie is a US citizen and is employed as a tailor. She lives on Melrose Street with her parents and her sister in that year. Her family told me that she worked in a coat factory.
In 1933, Angie was just 23 years old when she had her daughter Anne Bivona Barnes.
Her daughter Anne recalls that her family lived in Brooklyn at 41 Street and Ft. Hamilton Parkway until about 1939. Then, from 1939 to 1955 the family lived on Bushwick at the corner of Irving and Stockholm Street.
Angie was buried in NY. She had lived to be 78 years old.
When Francesco “Frank” Bivona was born on November 30, 1904, in Mendoza, Argentina, his father, Vincenzo Bivona, was 29 and his mother, Anna Cappadoro Bivona, was 27.
Frank was from an Italian family, but he was born in Argentina where his family resided for a number of years before going back to Sicily, Italy. He then emigrated to the United States leaving from a port of departure in Palermo, Sicily, Italy on 22 December 1915. He came to New York on the vessel known as Giuseppe Verde and arrived stateside on 6 January 1916.
FRANK’S MOTHER: The ship manifest for the Giuseppe Verde provides some information about Frank’s mother. His mother was listed on the ship manifest as Anna Cappadero (note the name Cappadoro is spelled differently here) We know that the Giuseppe Verde vessel sailed out of Palermo on 22 December 1915. Frank’s mother says that she is a 38 year old woman who can read and write. Her age matches with the birth date that I found for her: 30 November 1877. She states that she is married to Vincenzo Bivona and is going to meet him in Brooklyn, NY at his residence on Stagg Street. She also states in this manifest that she has no occupation and that the name of her mother was Maria Accardi. Her physical description is of a 5’4″ woman with brown hair and eyes. Her birth place was Partanna, Italy.
By the time of the 1920 US census, Anna is living at 165 Manhattan Avenue, Brooklyn, NY with her husband and children. It is in this census that you can see her children Joe, William, John, and Frank all had been born in Argentina. The other children listed in that census Vincent, Tony, Paulie and Angelo were all born in New York. In this census, Anna also states that she became a naturalized citizen in 1916.
FRANK’S FATHER: I believe that Vincenzo was born on 7 April 1874. One of the only methods for tracing him was a WWI draft registration card that I found. The draft registration would have occurred from 1917 to 1918. Vincenzo was naturalized as a US citizen in 1916 so he would have had to register. Here is why I believe the draft card belongs to him: He lists his closest relative as Anna Bivona and his residence as 165 Manhattan Ave. He is employed by the Eastern District Dye Works and his job is to dye silks. Now…go back to the 1920 US census for Anna and you will see that the address is also listed as 165 Manhattan Ave. (He lists his full name as Vincent Salvatore Bivona and describes himself as of medium height and build with black hair and brown eyes.) In the 1920 US census, Vincenzo says that he is a washer in a silk factory. I believe that he is buried in a Catholic cemetery: St. John Cemetery, Middle Village, Queens County, New York.
Vincenzo was an alcoholic and that may explain why his wife Anna eventually leaves him and lives in her own household.
FRANK: When working with genealogy, I try to find official documents that can provide insight and a timeline. I found a baptism record from Nuestra Señora de Luján, Luján de Cuyo, Luján, Mendoza, Argentina on 25 Jul 1905 for Frank.
In the 1920 census. Frank is listed as the 15 year old son of Vincent and Anna living on 165 Manhattan Avenue, Brooklyn district of Kings, New York. His birth place is recorded as Argentina, but his mother tongue is Italian. Instead of school, Frank, at age 15, is employed as a clerk at a silk factory.
I found this declaration of intention for naturalization (by the time of this document Frank is 19 years old):
At the age of 22, Frank married Angelina “Angie” Cirabisi. I found a wedding date of 30 April 1927. They were married in New York.
By the time of the 1940 census, Frank is 34 years old. (His daughter, Annabelle, is 7 years old.) The residence is now listed as 162 Irving Avenue, New York, Kings, New York. He states that the highest grade he has completed in schooling was 6th grade. He is now working 40 hours a week as an insurance agent. His yearly income is 2,450. He is living with his wife, Angie (born in New York), and his daughter Annabelle. In this 1940 census, he is also living with his father-in-law, Joseph Cirabisi who is recorded to be of alien status having been born in Italy. In 1940, the other person living with Frank and his family is his mother-in-law, Leonada Cirabisi who is age 52.
Recently, Anne (Annabelle “Anne” Bivona Barnes) described her residence on Irving Ave. It was a railroad flat, a 4 unit apartment above a drug store. She said they lived there from 1939-1955. Pasquale Zinnanti owned the building. The owner was a distant cousin of Angie’s. The Zinnanti children, Frank and Joseph, were like brothers to Anne.
FRANK’S SIBLINGS: Frank’s parents Vincenzo and Anna had 7 children. Here is some information on those family members:
Giuseppe or “Joseph” was born around 1899 in Argentina.
William seems to have 2 birth places! In some cases, he lists Argentina as his place of birth. BUT, in his petition for citizenship he states that he was born in Italy. The photo below is very interesting because it shows Pasquale Zinaupi as a witness who resides at the same 162 Irving Avenue address as shown in the photo I included for Frank and fits with Anne Bivona Barnes’ recollection of the owner of the building! The other witness is Giuseppe (or Joseph) his brother.
I am also including this photo of William Bivona’s death notice because it gives a clue as to the possible burial location for other members of the family.
Vincentwas born 5 December 1908 and states 2 places for his birth. In the 1920 census (he was 11 years old) and he claims to have been born in New York. In the 1930 census (he was 22 years old) he states that he was born in Argentina. The other information that the 1930 census gives us is that Anna is now living without her husband at 350 Melrose Street. In 1930, she is claimed to be the head of household living with her children Vincent, Tommy, Angelo and Pauline. In this 1930 census Vincent lists his occupation as a “paster” in a shoe factory.
Antonio “Tony” was born approx. 1911 in …well, here we go again. In the 1920 census he states that he was born in New York, but in the 1940 census he states that he was born in Argentina. In 1940 he is living at 331 Melrose Street with his wife. Note: he is obviously a neighbor to his mother Anna and some of his siblings in 1940! In 1940 his occupation was a wood heel turner.
Paolina was born in New York approx. 1913
Angelo was born 31 Oct. 1918.
DEATH NOTICE FOR FRANK BIVONA
Frank, father of Annabelle “Anne” Bivona Barnes, died on 18 Feb. 1969 in New York. Here is a copy of his death notice from the Daily News in New York: