Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Treasure Chest Thursday - Italian Processetti Records

My favorite of all Italian records are processetti or allegati records. If you are lucky, you can obtain 3 generations of your direct line ancestors with a single series of processetti documents for one couple. Processetti documents are a series of documents that was required to be provided to the Municipio when a couple was completing their marriage banns. Before a couple could marry, marriage banns had to be posted for 3 consecutive weeks in a public place (usually the municipio) before a couple could get married. This practice is still law in Italy, however, today many towns post the pubblicazioni on their websites. When a couple would go to the municipio to complete their first marriage bann, they were required to bring in a series of documents that vary depending on their personal circumstances. The documents are always noted on their marriage bann. These series of documents always include either a record of baptism or atto di nati (birth act) for both the bride and groom. Other documents that are provided depend on their individual circumstances. If one parent was deceased prior to the date the first marriage bann was posted, that parent's atto di morte was included. Because the atto di morte lists the names of the parents of the deceased, it can be a quick way to obtain the names of another generation. If both parents were deceased, the grandparents appeared at the municipio, however, if they were also deceased it is highly likely their death act were also included. If the bride was under the age of 18 and the groom was under the age of 21, they were considered minors. In the event an orphaned minor married, a family counsel meeting was held with 3 men of each parent's family who had to agree that the marriage would be in the best interest of the minor child. Many other documents may be found in these series of records which are the richest in genealogical information in all the available records (in my opinion).

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