Researching my Fulton County family

Sepia Saturday 503Third in a series of posts based on recent research discoveries at the NYS Archives & Library, introducing my maternal immigrant ancestors of Fulton County, N.Y.

For the last few years I have mainly written about my paternal ancestors whose family lines go back generations in the Western Hemisphere.

However, this year I hope to spend more time researching and writing about my maternal German and Italian immigrant ancestors who arrived in the mid to late 1800s and settled in the Mohawk Valley town of Gloversville in Fulton County, N.Y. So let me introduce them.

The Stoutner family of Gloversville, N.Y., circa 1908. My great-great grandfather Andrew Stoutner, center, holds my grandmother Elizabeth on his lap. To his left is my great-great grandmother Christina, his third wife. They are surrounded by their extended family. Click here for fuller caption and details. Photo scan by Molly Charboneau

Meet my Gloversville ancestors

Andrew and Christina (Albeitz) Stoutner. My great-great grandfather Andrew, a brick manufacturer, immigrated from Germany circa 1855. My great-great grandmother Christina, who arrived from Germany circa 1864, was his third wife. I wrote about them briefly in a previous post.

Joseph and Eva Elizabeth (Edel) Mimm.  My great-great grandfather Joseph, a machinist and glove company tool-and-die maker, immigrated from Baden-Württemburg in Germany. My German immigrant great-great grandmother Lizzie was a glove maker. They each arrived in 1873 and were married in Gloversville in 1876.

Mulberry Bend in lower Manhattan (1894). My Curcio ancestors from Italy were married in New York City in 1880 and survived this rough neighborhood before relocating and raising a huge family in Gloversville, Fulton County, N.Y. Image: NYPL Digital Collections

Antonio and Antoinette (Del Negro) Curcio. My Italian great-great grandfather Antonio immigrated first. My great-great grandmother Antoinette arrived later. Both were from the Campania region. They married in New York City in 1880 — near where they lived in the Five Points area of lower Manhattan. They eventually relocated to Gloversville.

Peter and Mamie (Curcio) Laurence (nee Di Lorenzo). My great-grandfather Peter immigrated from Italy in 1895. He was also from the Campania region and was the last to arrive in Gloversville. There, he met and married my great-grandmother Mamie — the Curcios’ oldest daughter who was likely born in Saratoga Springs, N.Y.

Finding family in city directories

Unlike my dad’s ancestors, who lived all over — from Quebec, New York and Pennsylvania to New Jersey and Maryland — my mom’s immigrant ancestors all lived in one place.

After settling in Gloversville, they lived out their lives there and were buried in Prospect Hill Cemetery (shown in green on the map below). Some of my maternal ancestors worked in the glove industry, others were small proprietors — and all left a helpful trail of records.

1868 map of Gloversville, Fulton County, N.Y.
1868: Map of Gloversville, Fulton County, N.Y. Click here to enlarge. My maternal German and Italian immigrant ancestors arrived in Gloversville in the mid to late 1800s. Some worked in the glove industry, others were small proprietors. All lived out their lives there and were buried in Prospect Hill Cemetery, shown in green. Image: NYPL digital collections

On my recent research trip I spent time perusing one set of those records, the Gloversville and Johnstown, N.Y., city directories, at the New York State Library — which turned out to be a worthwhile exercise.

In the next post, I will begin sharing what I found. Please stop back! Meanwhile, please visit the blogs of this week’s other Sepia Saturday participants here.

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12 thoughts on “Researching my Fulton County family”

  1. Many of my photos of American musicians and bands are from immigrant communities, so I look forward to this series. Countless cities and towns had immigrants recruited for special skills or industries, and as a bonus they made important contributions to American musical culture too.

    1. So true. In the early 1990s, my mom and I went on a family history road trip to Gloversville and you could see the lingering European influence in some of the wide roadways with their broad, green medians. Also (spoiler alert) there was an opera house. But more on that later as this saga unfolds.

  2. Most surprising to have a town named after an occupation and so interesting that your family were also involved in glovemaking. Were your Mimm forebears recruited by a company who persuaded them to emigrate.

    1. Family oral history among my mom’s relative says that Peter Laurence (nee Di Lorenzo) came in response to recruitment in Italy — so my Mimm ancestors may have come that way as well.

  3. How wonderful you have so much information about your ancestors. Perhaps it doesn’t seem like a lot, but I’d wager many of us have either nothing at all except the faces in the photos, or perhaps a date of birth or death, maybe. You’re lucky in that regard!

    1. Thanks for your thoughtful comment. It may be that I know less about my maternal immigrant ancestors simply because I have not focused on them until now. I hope that writing their stories will push me to review the research I have done — and do some more! Stay tuned 🙂

    1. The glove makers came first. In 1853, the small town of Stump City became the incorporated village of Gloversville — named after the glove manufacturing industry that was established there.

    1. Thanks, Susan. I’m excited to be researching maternal ancestors who lived in town — hoping there will be more records than for my rural, paternal ancestors.

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