2019: 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks – Week 47 (Nov. 18 – Nov. 24): Soldier

2019: 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks – Week 47 (Nov. 18 – Nov. 24) Soldier

I “first” joined Amy Johnson Crow’s 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks on its “first” year in 2014… and what a whirlwind year that was… writing, editing and researching daily for 365 days! As much as I wanted to continue the following year, I found that I didn’t have the time to continue another year with that type of research… although I did continue blogging and writing stories at my own pace, which allowed me to write on other topics as well as family stories when ideas came my way… but I’ve often missed it. The first year were no specific weekly prompts like today… but I’m taking a different spin on them. There will be some posts on a specific ancestor, but most will be memories that spring from those prompts. Head over to 2014 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks to read about my ancestors in the first years challenge.

If you’re new to genealogy, make your “first” stop to Amy’s website for genealogy ideas or even join in on this 52 Week challenge… you learn by doing… not procrastinating! There is no right or wrong… anything you do is a start!



I’ve always known that there were many military members in my family… from my father, Harold Clayton Bryan who served in the Navy… to my grandfather Edgar T. McKinley – Army; great-grandfather Joseph T. Sharp (Army-Cavalry)… great-great-great Berrien C. Bryan (Army)… with many uncles serving in both Army and Navy. There has only been one family member who was killed in the war… Edgar “Leroy” McKinley (Army WWII)… my mother’s only brother.

My husband, Steve Insalaco, served in the US Air Force… his father, Steve Joseph Insalaco (Army WWII)… his grandfather Giuseppe Cambino (Army WWI)… his grandfather Stefano Insalaco, served in the Italian Army before coming to America.

For “Soldier”… I’m focusing on my husband’s grandfather’s.

My husband’s family came here in the early part of the twentieth century as immigrants from Italy.

The three family lines that immigrated from Italy to the United States:

  • Stefano Insalaco (Stephen Insalaco) – March 13, 1909 / April 9, 1920
  • Giuseppe Gambino (Joseph Cambino) – May 27, 1913
  • Giovanni DeTullio (John DeTulio) – Aug. 02, 1906 / April 22, 1909 (Giulia Catalano -DeTulio

Giovanni DeTullio (John DeTulio)

1930 DeTulio censusFIX

DeTullio/DeTulio, 1930 Census

John DeTullio first came to New Haven, CT. in 1906, and continued to live in the “Little Italy” area at addresses of 2 Olive St., and 5, 15, 42, and 45 Warren St. He worked in various jobs, with the first one found working for Star Line Co. (N.H.S.C.) as a dock hand at Belle Dock (record found on the 1918 WWI Registration Card). Later he found work at a local New Haven lumber company… DeForest & Hotchkiss at 115 Water St. John seemed to always work near his home as he didn’t drive.

1917 CT Military Census

In the 1917 military census, John was listed as married, living at 5 Warren St., could not drive, was not a citizen, and had never served in the military; his occupation was listed as a stableman.

The 1930 Census, shows that John and wife, Julia (Giulia) were living at 2 Olive Street, with their nine children, Antoinette, Carmela, Rosa, Michael, Nicholas, Maria, Andrew, Lucy, and Josephine; the children’s ages varied from 2 months to 19 years of age. At this time they rented, paying $21 dollars a month. Neither John or Julia were listed as able to read and write, but all children of school age were listed as able to. Their language spoken was Italian… and from accounts, I’ve heard it was always their dominant language used in their home. Several of their grandchildren that did know their grandparents, told me how they never had much communication with their grandparents as they didn’t speak Italian. The one odd question on this census to me was “did they own a radio?”… it was noted that “yes” they did.

By the time the 1940 Census was taken, the family had moved from 2 Olive St. to 42 Warren St., which was just around the corner… still remaining in the Italian area of New Haven. The family rented there at $16 dollars a month. I was told that he often moved the family to less expensive rents through the years, and on Warren St., much family lived there; as far as I’ve found he never bought, only rented. By 1951, Julia, widow of John DeTulio, was living at 55 Carlisle St. in New Haven with son Nicholas. (I’m not sure if she rented or owned)

DeTullio / DeTulio Through the years

Detulio census 1

Detulio census 2


Giuseppe Gambino (Joseph Cambino) – May 27, 1913

Giuseppe arrived in the United States as a young man, age eighteen, on May 27, 1913. As jobs were scarce, it pushed him to quickly join the Army in WWI on July 20, 1917. That may have been his best choice, as he came out of the Army as a barber. We are not sure if he knew barbering before entering, but it was told to me by sons Johnny and Frank, that he came out of the Army as a Barber; it was told he cut hair while in the Army.

Cambino ship Clip

Giuseppe Gambino (Cambino) arrived May 27, 1913

Even though I found Giuseppe’s destination listed on the ship manifest at Ellis Island for 178 Frank St. in New Haven, ct., I never found him actually listed in the city directory until 1920, after returning from WWI; he was listed as a barber at 668 Washington Ave., West Haven, with a residence now of 178 Frank St.; previously listed there was a Thomas Foormichella and Grava Angelo. He may have boarded with them and his name never given; they were boarding houses on Frank St.

1930 Cambino Census1930FIX

1930 Census: Joseph Cambino and family

On the 1930 census, Joseph was now married, working of his own accord at his barber shop (Buddy’s Barber Shop) on Washington Ave. in West Haven… but living at 294 York St.; he owned this home with a value of $6000, and 3 children were living at home… Catherine, Fred, and Celia. Joseph was listed as able to read and write and speak English, which was their primary language spoken in the home; all the children spoke and read English. I was told that he never spoke in Italian… only wanting his children to speak English… he wanted them to be American. Joseph also owned a radio, and from his grandson, Steve, he enjoyed listening to his radio while working in the barbershop; he kept one on a shelf in the shop that was always on. They also had one on a shelf in their kitchen at home and it’s the very one that we have today in our kitchen.


Grandpa Joe Cambino’s radio

Joseph Cambino came here at the youngest age (18) of my husband’s grandparents… coming here as a single man… and the only one to own a business… and buy a house at an early age. He operated his own business by age 25, never rented except for when he first arrived… and bought three houses during his lifetime. He and his wife, Minnie (Domenica) lived in a small back room in the building of the barber shop, but within a year or two, he bought his first house on York St.in West Haven, Ct. (It seems Giuseppe Cambino was the most prosperous of my husband’s immigrant grandparents.)

Gambino / Cambino Through the Years

Cambino year listing

Cambino year listing 2


Stefano Insalaco (Stephen Insalaco) – March 13, 1909 / April 9, 1920

Stephen Insalaco entered the United States more than once as a single man, but it wasn’t until 1920 did he return as a married man with his family, daughter Louise, and son Anthony. It’s told he was ordered to serve in the Italian army before being allowed to leave with his family.

1930 insalacoFIX

Insalaco, 1930 Census

Stefano first came in 1909 with his brother, Gaetano… both listing their destination as N.Y., with an address of 3 Monroe St.  It was told to me that he didn’t remain long in the United States before returning to Italy. He returned soon to Italy, but it was also said that he went to Argentina to work on laying train tracks; I was never able to find anything on those trips. But I do know that he returned to Italy, and remained there to serve in their Army… by their demands. Before returning with his family, he once again came to live with cousins in Willimantic and worked in the Willimantic Thread mills.

By 1920, he returned, for the final time, to the United States… bringing his wife, Giacinta, and two children, Louise, age 2 and Anthony, age 2 months. Their destination was to cousins in Willimantic, CT., where work was promised in the Willimantic Thread Mill as a weaver; he had worked there on a previous trip.

The 1930 Census finds Stephen and Giacinta have moved their family to Shelton, Ct. where’s he has found work at Bloomenthols, also a textile mill. They rented for $15 dollars monthly at 131 Oak. St… both were listed as able to read and write… and six children were living at home; no radio was owned.

They made a few moves during the 1940’s but was found at 346 Coram Ave. in 1940. His occupation had remained as a weaver, but now renting at a price of $18 dollars a month. It was noted that he did not work at all in 1939 and their other income was “zero;” with 9 children at home, not sure how he supported them all. It was told to me that at one time, Giancinta took in laundry and later worked at a local shirt factory folding shirts. I’m sure there was some income coming in as my father-in-law always talked about how he worked at a local grocery store delivering groceries from age 8, to help support the family. After leaving Coram Avenue, they bought their first house on Kneen Street.

Insalaco Through the Years

Insalaco listings 1


Only two out of my husband’s three grandparents who immigrated here bought houses. It seems the one (Joseph Cambino) who came here at the youngest age of 18, and single… worked himself up the ladder at a quicker pace. Was it because he acquired an occupation of a barber in the Army? However it happened, he worked for himself, quickly owning his own business.

If I hadn’t already gathered information on his grandparents, I would have discovered much information through the census… such as year of immigration, marital status, where immigrated from, residences, children, age at marriage, and property owned.


Continue reading 2019: 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks over HERE!

To read more Family Stories… click HERE.

© 2019, copyright Jeanne Bryan Insalaco; all rights reserved

About Jeanne Bryan Insalaco

My blog is at: https://everyonehasafamilystorytotell.wordpress.com/
This entry was posted in 2019: 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks, Daily Writings and funnies..., Family Stories and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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