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The immigration flow of Italians to the United States started after 1850, and particularly in the years straddling the century: during this period, some 4 million Italians moved from their country to the U.S.


In 1880 Baltimore, MD, had a population of 184 Italians that continued to grow until it formed a large community, mostly composed of immigrants from Genoa and the Abruzzi region. The American branch of the Bonolis family came exactly from the Abruzzi, and has lived almost exclusively in the Baltimore area.


The following transcripts were drawn from the original manifests of the ships that used to land at Ellis Island  ( , a “compulsory” passage for all immigrants:




Year of arrival




Vincenzo Enrico




Wishes to join his brother Francesco in Baltimore (but did he really exist?)






Came in on a different ship, wishes to join her father Vincenzo






As above









Many Italians who had migrated abroad returned to Italy to serve their country and fight World War I and especially World War II. Gaetano never went back to the United States, but remained in Teramo and started his own descent.

Adele Macher neé Lazarowicz has greatly contributed to the completion of the following tree: (Adele is a descendant of Elvira 1888)






The evidence that dates most far back in time is that of José Bonolis Santos, born in Monteria, State of Córdoba, in 1872.

We are trying to find out whether the father, or even the grandfather of this José Bonolis was Italian or maybe, given the language, a Spaniard, which would add an interesting note to our research. What had brought him to distant Colombia? Was he a trader? A diplomat? A sailor? A runaway? 

Thanks to Leila Yanet Guerrero Bonolis we have began to follow a track……







Elaborazione alternativa: (*) In Spanish speaking countries both mother’s and father’s surnames are used, the latter being the main family name, the second surname is the mother’s.
Juana and Petronillo not being married, the law at the time did not permit children born outside marriage to take the father’s name as the main family name. 
Who were Juana’s parents? What were their origins?




Caracas: our little big man R! Your Dad is watching over you from the sky: he is the brightest star, the one you will always see, the same that we too will always see from down here in Italy.


ITALY (with France and Belgium)


Whilst the link between Teramo and Naples is clear, on the other hand the concentration of this surname on Lake Maggiore, which has started the French tree, does not seem to have had the same origin. That is if the information so far obtained are correct (18th century in the North, 15th century in the centre, see Genealogy Notes).

With the great emigration flow that began in the second half of the 19th century, France too was a destination chosen by Italian emigrants coming mainly from regions in the north. These offset the drop in emigrants from other countries, just as other Italians emigrating to America replaced the preceding wave of emigrants from English-speaking countries.


In those years, the French were not only busy controlling their colonial empire, but had already started on the process of industrial development. However, contrary to the trend towards population growth in neighbouring countries, in 19th-century France there was already a definite pattern of limited growth in the number of its inhabitants, and there were insufficient human resources for employment in sectors such as building, railway construction, quarrying and mining, etc.


Meanwhile, during the period of the Italian Risorgimento, around 1850, France had been a refuge for political refugees from Italy.


At the end of the 19th century, there were around 300,000 Italians in France, not counting seasonal workers. They consisted mainly of builders, farm labourers and metallurgical workers, representing a low-cost workforce compared with French workers to whom the State made certain welfare payments. Despite the fact that the Italians accepted low wages, they were leaders in trade union activity at the time, and instigators of strikes that broke out in various parts of southern France in this period.


With the presence of this workforce, many workshops, shops and small manufacturing businesses, with various types of Italian ownership, began to flourish.


Lake Maggiore





Domenico, family founder of Belgium, Giuseppe, of France, and Carlo: could they have been brothers?










The family trees that follow are obviously to be considered incomplete, in particular starting from the 1860s onwards.

The professions, or crafts, are extracted from the birth certificates where the father normally would declare it together with other information at the moment of the birth registration.

As for the names of the wives, like in other trees, it has not been always possible to mention them but, where available, the information can be provided upon specific request.

Deaths in young age have almost never been reported.


















This coat of arms was found among great grandfather Ettore's papers.  It must have belonged to Giuseppe (see his biography in the Personalities section).  The 3 color rainbow must have been added by him during his involvement in the Carbonari movements.




Records show that a Giuseppe Bonolis, 38, single, farmer, landed in Argentina on February 17, 1889, off a boat coming from Genoa, Italy. The name of the boat: "Duchess of Genoa". Did he ever find fortune in that land? There doesn't seem to be track of Bonolis' leaving in Argentina nowadays, but one never knows...


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