Beyond my Nocciano roots

In my last post, I traced my great-grandfather Antonio Scardetta’s paternal roots (surnames Scardetta and Amicone) back to Elice and Collecorvino, respectively, in the late 1700s.  His mother, Rosaria di Meco, comes from a family with a long history (relative to the amount of time available on church and civil records) in Nocciano, but with some distant ancestors coming from various other towns in Pescara.

An interesting fact: It is through the “di Meco” line that my grandparents are actually related. Rosaria di Meco was my grandmother Vincenza (Scardetta) Speziale’s grandmother, while her sister, Chiara di Meco, was my grandfather Pasquale Speziale’s grandmother. My mother said the Speziale and Scardetta families somehow knew each other back in Italy, but little did she know it was because they were related!

From doing the Nocciano research, I’ve found many surnames appearing over and over again, Rosaria and Chiara have ancestors that connect me to many of those surnames. Aside from di Meco which is a large Nocciano family, they have ancestors with the surnames d’Amico, Cetrano, d’Intinosante, di Virgilio, and Marcucci, all of which are recurring surnames in Nocciano.Pedigree Chart for Chiara di Meco

As far as I know, d’Intinosante, di Virgilio, and Marcucci have been around in Nocciano at least since the early 1700s, but probably even sooner. But after doing enough research, I’ve traced the d’Amico family back to the comune of Loreto Aprutino (abbreviated Loreto in most records). My 4th-great-grandfather Carmine Zopito Antonio d’Amico, born in Loreto in 1783, came to Nocciano sometime before married Prudenza Cetrano, a Nocciano native, in 1812. His two siblings Serafino and Gennaro also moved to Nocciano, as well as his parents Sabatino and Marianna Calli.  Civil records bring the d’Amico line back to Rocco d’Amico and Maria Cancelli in Loreto Aprutino, born in the early 1700s. I’ve seen d’Amico as a prominent name in Pianella and Catignano, and occasionally in Civitaquana, and I’m curious to see if all lines go back to several families in Loreto Aprutino.

The Cetrano family also poses an interesting puzzle. Cetrano is much more popular in Pianella, Civitaquana, and Catignano than in Nocciano, and all Noccianesi Cetrano’s descend from my 5th-great-grandfather Mattia Cetrano. From his death record I know his parents’ names Salvadore and Prudenza, but I have found no siblings of his. His death record says he was born in Nocciano, but in the early 1800s (specially, 1826), the birth locations were often incorrect. Given the popularity of Cetrano in other nearby comunes, I’m wondering if Mattia’s family actually comes from one of those towns. I’ve found some Cetrano’s in Civitaquana that have lived there at least since the 1750s, so perhaps Salvadore and Prudenza were originally from there.

The last is Marianna Calli, whose death record claims she was born in Città Sant’Angelo, a city near Pescara on the coast. I haven’t done any research with records from there, and given the huge population that could end up being a bit of a challenge.

It’s fascinating seeing how families from multiple towns can become intertwined, and I look forward to digging deeper into my roots!

As always, feel free to contact me with any questions about families from Nocciano, Civitaquana, or just Italian research in general at

– Anthony

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