Italians are known for making fast things. Take the Lamborghini Aventador for example. This 700-horsepower automobile accelerates from 0-60 in 2.9 seconds and maxes out at 217 mph. Of course, not many genealogists drive a Lamborghini! But how do speed and Italian genealogy go together? Consider the “allegati matrimoniali.” These are papers Italians filed in order to be married. This genealogical source quickly identifies several generations of Italian ancestry.
Since the nineteenth century, Italian brides and grooms have submitted copies of birth, baptismal, death, and burial records about themselves, parents, and even grandparents to civil authorities. This loose paperwork is typically stored in packets separate from the marriage register known as allegati matrimoniali.
Take a Sicilian I was recently researching. In 1838, he married in Palermo. His allegati matrimoniali included copies of Catholic baptismal records for himself, his bride, and death records for both of their fathers, as well as identification and death extracts for several of their grandparents. The allegati for a man born about 1816 extends his pedigree back to the early 1700s, all in one file.
Where do you find these records? Some are available at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City and through its satellite Family History Centers. They are usually referred to as allegati on the Family History Library Catalog and are listed under the “Civil registration” heading.
Be prepared for a fast ride!
Photo courtesy of the Autoviva.com Flickr Photostream.