by Phyllis Zeck
In 2013 I wrote a blog post about Catie’s ancestors which you can read here. Catie’s 4th great grandfather Vincenzo and my great grandfather Pietro Del Principe were brothers.
Giuseppe Donato (Daniel) (born 1863) and Marie Concette D’Addezio (born 1865) are Catie’s 3rd great grandparents. In the 1920 census Donato’s address was 39 Euston St in Clearfield Pennsylvania. In 1924 Donato died in Pennsylvania and is buried in St Catherine’s Cemetery. Donato died at the age of 60 of tuberculosis, he was a coal minor. Concette died in Buffalo, NY. Click here to read Concetta’s death certificate 03 Jun 1933. Donato and Concetta had 5 children: Liboria (Laura), Nocola Vincenzo (James), Leonardo, Angelo, and Vittorio.
Liboria (Laura) Del Principe and Carmino Mucci are Catie’s 2nd great grandparents. When Liboria met Carmino she had no idea of the tough road that was ahead for her. Liboria is one of our strongest female Del Principe ancestors! She was born in Italy in 1889 and died in Buffalo, NY in 1968. Click here to see Liboria and Carmino’s marriage license. She was pregnant with her 8th child when her husband Carmino was killed in a mining accident on 23 Nov 1917. He was killed by rock fall when he was only 34 years old. Liboria named their last child Carmine after his father. Click here to read an Obituary for Carmine Mucci. Catie and I both ponder over how Laura supported all those children. Carmino worked for the Cascade Mine and Coke Works in Sykesville, PA which is 275 miles west of Manhattan. The mine closed in 1939 and Catie has shared the following article about the closure Coal Mine Closure 02 Jan 1939. Below are some photos of the abandoned mine, click to enlarge.
Liboria married Phillip Ventura and had two more children; Olga and Angeline (born in 1925). In the 1930 census we found her in Buffalo, NY living with her mother and her brothers James, Leonard, and Angelo. She was a widow for the second time. Tragedy struck again on 10 Aug 1932 when Liboria’s first child died at the age of 23 after a brief illness. Obituary for Pasquale (Patsy) Mucci.
It just so happens that I am in the middle of reading John Grisham’s newest novel called Gray Mountain. If you want to read more about what life is like for the coal miner’s family you should read the book. It’s an engrossing story of life in a small town in the heart of Appalachia (in Virginia) and the horrors of strip mining and black lung disease. Thank you Catie for sharing your documents, stories, and photos!