A Visit to My Family's Ancestral Homeland

As many of you know,  I am Italian, despite my name.  My mother is Italian, the daughter of a man named Crescenzo Chiulli.    We recently returned from a visit to land of the Chiulli family, the Abruzzo region of Italy.    

There were nine of us making the journey, so we rented a house and so began our adventure of a lifetime.    We met some long lost relatives, learned much about our family history, and visited the farm in Alanno where my great-grandfather was born and raised.     We were honored by the mayor of Alanno, and were treated to the best family reunion party I could ever have imagined.

Over the coming weeks, I will write more and post pictures about my trip.    In the meantime, here is an article written by a reporter in Abruzzo who covered the reunion.  


Enjoy your Independence Day.

UPDATE: Read more about the trip right here: http://dennishouse.wordpress.com/2013/01/24/journey-to-abruzzo-to-meet-my-italian-family/

6 replies »

  1. Spectacular!!!! Nothing better than following your roots .. A long lost cousin in Canada did our roots about 4 yrs ago, amazing the twists, turns and surprises. Our family only knew 2 generations prior thinking it went from MI to Canada – the new trace found 6 full generations and proof the family had at least a full generation of businessmen, lumber jacks and a lumber yard and a pharmacy in the 1850’s in Haverhill, MA, then moved to New Brunswick, as lumber men, where I have many extended family members. Now I’m ready to start a journey to trace back further .. no timetable – just research. Congratulations on finding your roots.


    • The twists were crazy, during the process a funny story ensued, a proverbial haunted house ( a la fiction movies) and a wicked spinster the kids on the block ran from– as she lay in a nursing home a relative was approached by her– now known as a distant cousin, she heard of the lineage search and provided almost 450 documents. Detailing names addresses children even a primitive family tree, She even detailed a family cemetery which led further.. you never know where sources will lead you. JW


  2. Dennis – A very nice story. Like yourself, because of my last name – Farrell – I am often questioned about being Italian-American. It is great to connect with family in Italy – my cousins are in the North and I visit them often. Don’t just go visit once, go back as your kids get older and can continue to learn more about their heritage.

    Jerry Farrell, Jr.


  3. dennis it is nice of you to share your trip with your fans. we wonder , where dennis is when you not around. mary 7/5/12 1:42pm


  4. Dennis…A wonderful story..Like you, I want to connect with my family in Italy. I did visit for an hour or so with family back in 2006. I hope to get back there some day and really see where my parents lived in Giffoni Valley Piana, near Salerno. Perhaps this will happen some day as a visit and not a tour.


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