Giovanni Valentino Furlani, as he was baptized, was born 18 February 1884 in Vigolo Vattaro, in what is now Trentino Province, Italy. He was the eldest son of Giovanni Battista Furlani and Maria Dallabrida.
Giovanni immigrated to the US in 1912 at the age of 28. His two younger brothers, Guglielmo and Candido (my grandfather) had preceded him in 1907. By 1912, Guglielmo had already moved from Mt. Carmel, Northumberland County, Pennsylvania to Colorado. Candido (Condy) was still in Mt. Carmel.
When I researched passenger records at Ellis Island, I found something odd. I found Giovanni Furlani in the database twice. As follows:
Furlani, Geovanni, ethnicity Austria, residence Vigola, Austria, date 17 Oct 1912,age 28y, gender M, marital status S, ship’s name St. Paul out of Southampton, Southamptonshire, England, UK
Furlani, Giovanni, ethnicity Austria, residence Trentino, Austria, date 20 Oct 1912, age 28y, gender M, marital status S, ship’s name Philadelphia out of Southampton, Southamptonshire, England, UK
His certificate of arrival in his naturalization papers stated that he arrived on the ship Philadelphia on 20 October 1912. I wonder who arrived under his name on the ship St. Paul on 17 October 1912 and I wonder they were a relative.
Giovanni joined his brother on Mt. Carmel to work in the mines. The occupation of all three brothers was coal miner. He was living in Mt. Carmel when the following photo was taken by the local newspaper. In 1915, the newspaper featured the immigrants from Vigolo Vattaro who had come to Mt. Carmel from about 1880 through the present (1915). It had two photos: one of all married men that featured my grandfather, Candido and one of all single men that included my great uncle John (see photo).
Giovanni (John) Furlani & the Single Men from Vigolo Vattaro in Mt. Carmel Item 1915, Giovanni is on the second full row, fourth from the left.
By the first census since his arrival, the 1920 US census, Giovanni (John) Furlani was in Clay, Harrison County, West Virginia. In the 1930 US census, he is in Rivesville, Marion County, West Virginia; but by 1942, according to his WWII Draft Registration, he was back in living in Harrison County, West Virginia. I have not been able to find him in the 1940 US census so far.
I remember that Uncle John used to send us a Christmas card every year until he died in 1963. I never met him and the only photo I have of him is the one in the newspaper photo. He died on his birthday on 18 February 1963 at Davis Memorial Hospital, Randolph County, West Virginia. He died of pneumonia at the age of 79 exactly. He is buried at Holy Cross Cemetery in Marion County, West Virginia.
Tombstone of Giovanni (John) Furlani (1884 – 1965)
Week 43 of 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks, a blogging challenge initiated by Amy Johnston Crow in her blog No Story Too Small.