1. Right now I’m helping my Aunt Nettie out with her family history.She was raised in Red Hook, Brooklyn, and her father was the child of an immigrant from Palermo. As with all of the men of her maiden name, they worked as dock workers during prohibition. With Red Hook being so heavily run by gangs (think Joe Masseria… Also, Al Capone grew up here), they were undoubtedly bootlegging… Especially since by 1930 most of the men owned expensive properties on a dockworker’s salary. There are news stories right out of the movies, where someone opens the door and blows you away with a sawed off shotgun. These things happened literally doors from where her family lived. Her father’s cousin wound up in a Catholic Institution for a little while, for juvenile delinquency.
Anyway, although all of this is super interesting, I started to think about confluence of events. The thing that struck me the most was that my great grandmother was, at the same time, partying in Brooklyn, and stories are of her taking my gram with her to the Elks Lodge in Brooklyn, where my gram was asked to tap dance on the table for noted anti-prohibition movie-star mayor Jimmy Walker. No doubt they were drinking the same booze that was being unloaded in Red Hook. Neither my gr-grandmother or my Aunt Nettie’s dad knew that in 30 years their histories would be intertwined by marriage, but they still were parts of the same story. Interesting, no?
My DAR (Daughters of the American Revolution) application is almost done! Just a few more pieces of modern vital records to add! My goal is to have it all approved and membership submitted in February so that I can attend the State meetings as a full member in April!