view of Salandra, Matera, Basilicata, Italy by Antonio DiPersia

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Marriages & Families - Lawrence and Felicia Mancini

Felicia Ambruso and Lorenzo (Lawrence) Mancini were married at Our Lady of Mount Virgin Church in Garfield in April, 1920.  Felicia, born in 1891, was the second daughter of Rocco and Pasquarosa.  Following Italian naming customs, she was named after her mother's mother, Felicia Isabella Cristalli.  In 1913, Felicia came to the USA with her brother Michael and sister Sylvia.  Lorenzo was born in 1893 in San Severo, a town in the Foggia Province of Italy.  He came to the USA in 1915 and taught himself how to read and write in English. 
Lawrence joined the US Army in 1918, near the end of WWI, and was automatically naturalized as a US citizen.  He was a bricklayer and stone mason, and built a simple but beautiful brick house at 74 Harrison Avenue in Garfield, just up the street from the Bonelli's. He also built a brick garage to match the house. Which is interesting, since he never owned a car.  House and garage still stand proudly to this day.  Lawrence was also an amateur artist and sculptor.  He painted many oil paintings and the fireplace he designed and built for his house is a unique work of art. 
Felicia was small in stature, but had enormous energy and zest for life.  She took pride in the cleanliness of her home.  Her granddaughter tells the story that she even washed the unfinished floorboards in the attic.
Felicia and Lawrence had two sons, Michael and Rocco, who both went on to have families of their own. 

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