Discovering My Aeolian History: Video Series
A 4 part episode series with 2 topics per episode for those who want to learn more about their Aeolian and Italian ancestry.
Includes a cooking segment with Giulia Biviano between topics to learn how to cook some typical Aeolian dishes.
These videos were recorded as part of our 2020 6th Aeolian Genealogy Webinar Series.
From beginners to advanced family historians, this informative video series will help you to begin and continue searching for your ancestors.
What attendees have said about the Series:
“The Aeolian Genealogy Seminar is just brilliant!”
“Thank you for another great session – Looking forward to the next weeks”
“The speakers were interesting and all the presentations were of exceptional quality.”
“I’m really happy to be able to watch from the United States!”
Topics you will learn about:
Topic No.1. Nicknames “Soprannomi”
How our relative’s nicknames can assist in your family history research.
Presenter: Janetta Ziino
Topic No.2. Aeolian Surnames
Examining the origin, meaning and evolution of Aeolian surnames and how this can help with your family research.
Presenter: Joe Russo
Topic No. 3. Finding distant cousins through DNA
Learn how taking an Ancestry DNA test can help you find long lost cousins and break down those brick walls in your family tree.
Presenter: Michael Angelini
Topic No.4. Five Centuries of Notable Travellers and Adventurers to the Aeolian Islands.
A discussion about bygone visitors and explorers, featuring an introduction to emerging research on 16th & 17th Century settlement by Jewish refugees after their departure from Spain & Portugal.
Presenter: John Barnao
Topic No.5. Infant abandonment and the foundling wheel “La ruota” in Sicily
Analysing the rescue system and name-assignment practices of abandoned infants
Presenter: Dr. Lucia Barbera
Topic No.6. Tips on how cemeteries can help us with our family tree
Exploring how gravestones can give clues to further help us in our family history research & understanding Italian cemeteries.
Presenter: Michael Angelini
Topic No.7. Topic: How to get started on Aeolian Genealogy
From interviews with elderly relatives to sources like the Victorian Public Records Office, Australian National Archives, Sands and McDougall Directories, Cemeteries, Presbyteries, Ancestry.com and Ellis Island websites to kick start your family tree.
Presenter: Robert Mandile
Topic No.8. A Tour of the Museum of Aeolian Emigration in Malfa, Salina
Join a virtual tour through the museum collection and discover the factors and events that shaped the Aeolian diaspora in the New World.
Presenter: Cristina Neri
And…. between each topic learn how to cook some typical Aeolian dishes with Giulia Biviano with a short Aeolian Cooking segment.
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Learn more about Michael
Michael Angelini is the grandson of Aeolian born grandparents on his mother’s side, who came from Lipari and Salina. Since 2005 at the age of 15 he has been researching his ancestry and since 2007 has been helping others find their own ancestors.
Michael has created many online indexes from the birth, marriage and death records on the islands relating to the years 1820-1910. He is an active committee member and Assistant Director of Events at the SIE. He aims that his research and data collection will help other descendants from the Aeolian Islands go back further in their ancestry.
Dr. Lucia Barbera
Learn more about Lucia
Dr Lucia Barbera, currently living in Melbourne and working as a Secondary LOTE teacher, holds a PhD in the History of Social Institutions and Development Cooperation from the University of Messina, a Master of Teaching from Deakin University, Melbourne and an Advanced Master’s Degree in Institutions and Policies of Human Rights and Peace from the University of Padua. She has worked in public and private organizations for the promotion and protection of women’s and children’s rights, in Veneto and in Sicily, and collaborated for different publications at various academic levels.
In 2015, Dr Barbera received a Letter of Commendation from the Commissioner of Messina Province, as a formal and official recognition of her vast and dedicated contribution to the research and photographic/documentary exhibition on the history of foundlings and abandoned children in Messina (Sicily).
Learn more about John
John Barnao was born in Carlton to parents who migrated from Stromboli. His father Vincenzo first came to Australia in 1927 as a 13-year-old and worked as a typical fruiterer all his life. He studied Economics and Commerce at the University of Melbourne and Arts at Monash. He then went on to pursue a career in Banking, Accountancy and Tax.
John is a member of various local historical societies and in recent years has been collecting photos and stories of Aeolian migrant experiences. A few years ago, he wrote a paper for the Italian Historical Society detailing the root causes of Aeolian migration and the significance of the Società’ Isole Eolie in directing the decision of many to come to Australia. He is presently our SIE Treasurer.
Learn more about Robert
Robert Mandile was born in Melbourne. He has completed a Teaching Diploma, an Arts Degree at LaTrobe University, ‘majoring in History, a Theology Degree and a Graduate Diploma in Religious
Education. Robert has taught at seven schools, teaching Years 6 to Year 12, also holding various positions of responsibility spanning 43 years. He is semi-retired, but undertaking emergency teaching and also a Tertiary Supervisor with Australian Catholic University. Growing up in the 1950s and 1960s, he spent much time with his family, meeting with relatives and attending various Aeolian events organised by the SIE. He has always had a love of history and after eight years of research published a book in 2010 of family trees and personal stories entitled ‘From the Aeolian Islands to Melbourne and Sydney’. A total of 205 copies were first published, and 40 copies of a second edition were printed several years later.
Learn more about Cristina
Cristina Neri was born in the country Victorian town of Horsham. Both her mother and father migrated to Australia from the Aeolian island of Salina soon after the Second World War.
Cristina’s father owned a succession of cafés and established the district’s first reception centre and bistro, the La Fontana. Cristina grew up in these kitchens as well as at the feet of her Nonna, thus igniting an appreciation for her Aeolian heritage and its food.
Cristina is a graphic designer, illustrator, photographer and author. Her favourite subject is her family and Aeolian heritage. She has recently written and illustrated her first children’s picture book titled For Love which is set on the island of Salina.
In 2013, she initiated the Eoliano Heritage Study Program to reunite descendants like herself with their cultural past and on 2016, curated the exhibition titled From Volcanoes We Sailed which featured at the Immigration Museum of Victoria. Cristina also wrote and produced the documentary Ammunini to celebrate the 90th year anniversary of the Società Isole Eolie.
It is Cristina’s hope that she can honour the Aeolian people, their journeys, cultural traditions and foods by her contributions as a committee member of the Società Isole Eolie.
Learn more about Joe
Joe Russo was born in Geelong to parents of Aeolian ancestry from Lipari and Salina. Joe has been researching his own ancestry and the genealogy of the Aeolian Islands, in particular, for over two decades. What started off as a hobby grew into a greater appreciation of the islands’ history, culture and especially its rich and often complex genealogical past.
After having created his first website on the subject back in the 1990s when the internet was still relatively unknown, now includes social media and an evolving new website and blog. Joe travels to the Aeolian Islands frequently.
Learn more about Janetta
After many years of teaching – originally as a Primary School Teacher, then an Italian Language Teacher, Janetta returned to university as a mature student upon receiving a scholarship to study an Advanced Diploma in Interpreting at RMIT in 2015.
Janetta is now a practising Certified Interpreter for the Italian community as well as working for the National Accreditation Authority for Translators and Interpreters (NAATI).
A member of the Regional Advisory Council for the Victorian Multicultural Commission, Janetta is immersed in the Italian community of Melbourne and is the Director of Events for the Società Isole Eolie of Melbourne.