ANCESTOR OF THE WEEK
Concetta di Gennaro
Concetta was one of my great-grandmothers on my paternal side. She was born in San Felice a Cancello, Caserta, Italia in 1890. I heard from my uncle that Concetta would collect wood on Mount Vesuvius to sell. From her early years she was a determined and diligent worker...I guess everyone had to be in the late 1800s and early 1900s. She married in 1912 to my great-grandfather, Vincenzo Esposito and they had three sons; two were born in Italy and one was born in the United States.
Concetta immigrated to the United States about 1927 with two of her sons, Pasquale and Francesco. She was traveling without my great-grandfather since he was already in the United States. He left Italy earlier in order to obtain work and secure a place to live. This is an amazing story for me. I'm sure it was difficult enough to travel with children across the Atlantic Ocean for weeks, but to also accomplish this by yourself says a lot about her character.
Concetta was widowed in 1950 after my great-grandfather died of lung troubles. I'm suspecting mesothelioma since he was a Sand Hog. Concetta didn't let this devastating event halt her own living. She went on to be the best mother and grandmother that she could. She was a tough lady from what I understand. I was only four-years-old when she died, and I don't remember ever meeting her, but perhaps I did. Some family stories paint her as being a very harsh woman, but a few family members stated that Concetta was tough but loyal to her family. She provided food and other necessary items to her grandchildren when times were difficult.
She remarried in the 1960s and I am impressed by her progressivism. She passed away on 7 OCT 1980 in Staten Island, New York. She is buried in the same cemetery with many other relatives, so I make the rounds every few months to pay my respects. I think that I resemble her, but no one agrees with me. I see it in the eyes. My father definitely took after the di Gennaro side because I see a remarkable resemblance there also. That's genetics for you, isn't it?
Thank you for reading and happy hunting!