Saturday, September 21, 2019

The Descendants of Sebastiano Cimino and Carmela Grasso

Sebastiana Cimino, my great grandfather's sister, was born in Carlentini 21 January 1886.

Back in 1992, I started a quest to learn the names of the descendants of Sebastiano Cimino and Carmela Grasso.  These were the parents that were left behind by my great grandfather, Antonino Cimino when he left Carlentini, Sicily for a new life in America in the first decade of the 20th century. With many starts and stops over the last 27 years, I have accumulated several names. But now with a trip to Carlentini planned in 2020, I have a new urgency and have achieved new successes.

Here is a translation of the letter that I received from the City of Carlentini back in 1992.

13 / JUNE / 1992
Dear Sir:
From the research carried out in our registers it appears that Sebastiano Cimino and Carmela Grasso had 4 children:
- Alfio Cimino, born in Carlentini  7 August 1872; Antonino Cimino born in Carlentini 23 December 1878; Sebastiana Cimino born in Carlentini 21 January 1886; Rosario Cimino born in Carlentini  2 April 1892- [My research shows two more daughters: Anna born 20 July 1875 and Lucia born 29 January 1882.]
[My great grandfather's brother] Alfio Cimino was married to Rosa Gulizia  1 November 1897 and they had 5 children: Carmela born 12 February 1898; Sebastiano born 14 May 1902; Sebastiana born 20 September 1904; Salvatrice born 23 November 1911 and Antonino born 2 March 1919-
[my great grandfather] Antonino Cimino married Maria Ossino, who was born in Lentini 10 March 1879. They were married 30 June 1903 and they had 3 children born [in Carlentini] Carmela was born 28 April 1903 and died 14 October 1903; [in the Sicilian tradition the next child was also named Carmela to carry forward the name of the paternal grandmother. The second...] Carmela was born  8 August 1904; Giovanni born  3 July 1909, of this branch of the family we have no other news because Antonino Cimino transferred to the U.S.A. about 1909- [The Carlentini official had no record of the fact that my grandfather, Sebastiano Cimino was born in Lentini in 1906.]
[My great grandfather's sister; see picture above] Sebastiana Cimino was married to Luciano Inserra  22 October 1904 and they had 3 children Carmelina born 16 October 1912, Salvatore born  16 July 1920, Giuseppe born 13 June 1924-
Rosario Cimino married Carmela Idolo on 20 August 1921 and transferred to Lentini-
In our City there are currently living many of your relatives, if you wish you can also contact  Mr. Angelo Randazzo who is the son of Salvatrice Cimino; His address is: Angelo Randazzo via Carlo Quinto, 26 96013 Car1entini Province of Syracuse-

Here is a summary of what I know about my second great grandparents who remained in Carlentini.

Sebastiano Cimino was born 28 December 1841 in Carlentini, Sicily and died there 2 April 1917. His father, Alfio Cimino, was 64 and his mother, Anna Gulizia, was 46 when he was born so there were most likely previous marriages for both of them. He married Carmela Grasso, daughter of Alfio Grasso and Giuseppa Tomaselli, on November 2, 1871, in his hometown of Carlentini. They had six children in 19 years.

Two of his children, Antonino and Lucia, immigrated to Omaha, Nebraska in the first decade of the 20th century and settled permanently in the United States. One son, Alfio Cimino, immigrated to the U.S. and worked there alongside his brother, Antonino but returned to Sicily and never returned to the U.S.

The death record says that Sebastiano Cimino lived on the Via del Leone in Carlentini. His occupation was contadino which means peasant farmer. Carlentini is mainly an agricultural center and produces citrus fruits, olives and cereals. There are also cow, pig and sheep farms.

The oldest son was Alfio born 1872 and in the Sicilian tradition he was named after his paternal grandfather. The next child was a girl named Anna born in 1875 and she was named after the paternal grandmother, Anna Gulizia. My great grandfather, Antonino was the third child born in 1878. The second son should have been named after his maternal grandfather but the name Alfio was already given to the first son.

The fourth child was a girl, named Lucia and she was born in 1882. A daughter Sebastiana was born in 1886 and the last child, a son, Rosario was born in 1892.

It must have been difficult for Sebastiano Cimino and his wife Carmela to see two of his children depart for the United States and never return. But they had four children that remained in Carlentini. There were four weddings to celebrate and many grandchildren would also fill their lives with joy.

Salvatrice Cimino born 23 November 1911 in Carlentini.
She is the mother of Angelo Randazzo and the granddaughter of Sebastiano Cimino and Carmela Grasso.

I did correspond with Angelo Randazzo for several years and he put me in touch with his uncle Antonino Cimino that lived in Milan.  When I moved to Texas in 2010, I was able to get in touch with the daughter of Angelo Randazzo by email. Recently, I have discovered that she and her sister and brother are all on Facebook and we have been corresponding in anticipation of my visit to Carlentini in 2020. We have been sharing pictures of our grandparents and I have been recording all of this information in my family trees on and

If you have accounts on either of those websites, you can view my Sicilian ancestors at the following links:

Here is the link to my family tree on
Here is the link to the family tree on Family Search:

I highly encourage you to sign up for a free account at if you have not already done so.  This site is particularly helpful for those of us with ancestors outside the U.S. which I think is just about all of us.

I look forward to my Sicilian family reunion in 2020. Vito and Michael Corleone had brass bands waiting for them in the Godfather movies.  I do not expect to have the whole town come out to greet me but the list of my Sicilian Facebook friends and relatives is growing quickly!

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