Friday, December 28, 2012

My Italian Family Tree

The apple doesn't fall far from the family tree.

Sorry that I haven't blog lately, and I'm kinda new at blogging, but I will try better. As a kid I didn't think my about "where I came from" much, and it wasn't talked about alot in the family. All I knew was that I was born and raised in Houston, Texas. I though that we all were just "Texans". Just over a year now I get a call from my daughter Ashley who tells me that she has to do a Family Tree for her history class. I didn't even know where to start, all I knew was my father and mother and my grandparents. So I decide to call my dad and ask about his parents, parents and so on. I found myself on a longer quest then I ever though, and even today I am still on the quest, but I am enjoying it. I found that on my father side of the tree that I am a third generation Italian! Here's what I do know now. In 1903 Giacomo & Vincenzo Di Dia (brothers) came to the United States of American from Marsala, Sicily, Italy. They stayed with a cousin named Gaspare Anastasi in Cleveland, Ohio. Some how Vincenzo (aka James Dee) ended up in the Sandusky, Ohio, and Giacomo (aka Chris Dee) ended up in Chattanooga, Tennessee. Vincenzo married Anna Rose Corso, and Giacomo married Maggie O'Brien. Vincenzo contracted some type of lung disease and return to Marsala, where he later past away. Giacomo and Maggie had two other children that past away early one at birth (girl) and the other 7 months old boy from measles. Some how they ended up in San Diego, California where a John W. Dee was born 1918, and later my grandfather James E. Dee Sr. born in Chattanooga, Tennessee 1920. Giacomo and Maggie who was pregnant at the time, and the two sons went to visit family in Marsala, Italy. Now I don't know the full story behind what happen next, but all I can do is report the facts. Maggie O'Brien and my grandfather who at the time was only 2 years old were the only two to return back to the U.S. from Marsala, Italy. Family story was that Giacomo didn't want to return to the U.S. and Maggie did. The two boys were split up between the two. Also remember Maggie was pregnant with their 5th child and her name was Mildred C. Dee 2 Apr 1923. And so the rest is history. I have been able to find living relatives all over the U.S. and most of them haven't moved far from where our great great grandparents started. Sandusky, Chattanooga, and Houston. I am making plans this coming summer 2013 to visit as much of them as I can. I am an addict now of genealogy, and will be for the rest of my life.