58a & b-Anita Salvi Petrocelli


New information about Anita Salvi Petrocelli became available this morning on Ancestry.  To add to the memories we shared in the Discussion section of  Posting 58a (Part 2), this posting presents an outline of Anita’s accomplishments in Junior and Senior years at high school.  Two photos from the yearbooks are also included.  Anita’s profile on the Serrapede-Torregrossa Research Tree at Ancestry is now updated.

Anita Salvi Petrocelli

anita salvi-e mckprt hs yrbk 1954
Close-up of Anita Salvi.  Senior Year.  1954 E. McKeesport H.S. Yearbook. 

Anita Salvi

Daughter of Vincent and Antoinette (nee Carola) Salvi

  • Born about 1936 in Pennsylvania
  • Passed on 4 July 1976
  • Sister of Henry Salvi
  • Wife of James Petrocelli

High School Years

Attended East McKeesport High School

  • 1953 – Member of chorus
  • 1953 – Yearbook Entry:  “Janet Forsythe, Jane Kibelbek, Mary Weishorn, Emogene Uhilir, Mrs. Jane Taylor, Miss Anne Segev, and Anita Salvi form the backbone of the JUN-SEN NEWS.  Through their efforts as editors and advisers, the JUN-SEN NEWS placed second in the 1952 P.S.P.A. competition.”
  • 1954 – Cast member of play, “Tons of Money”*
  • 1954 – Yearbook Entry:  “Anita Salvi – “Ne,” a pretty commercial seniorr; member of Tri-Hi-Y, chorus, publication and art editor of Jun-Sen News; junior play and yearbook staff; twice winner of Art Exhibit.

*The play Tons of Money was, according to Wikipedia, a popular farce  written by playwrights Will Evans and Arthur Valentine in the U.K.  The story concerned a brilliant inventor who devises an elaborate scheme to throw off those to whom he owes money. The play had a two year run in the early 1920s and was later adapted for film in the 1930s. In the film version a large inheritance, wealthy cousins, and a cagey butler also feature in the storyline.

Online Memorial:  FindAGrave

  • Memorial Manager:  Franny
  • Birth:  1935
  • Death:  4 Jul 1976
  • Burial: New St. Josephs CemeteryNorth Versailles, PAPlot:   Section 5 Lot 52 Part 2 Space 1Mem. ID:  175320612

Memorial URL:  https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/175320612

East McKeesport High School Yearbook 1954 – Anita Salvi’s Senior Year

anita salvi yearbook 1
Anita is standing in the lower right-hand photo.  She was part of the cast of the play “Tons of Money”.  1954 East McKeesport H.S. Yeargook.
anita salvi yrbk 2
Anita’s Yearbook photo, second from left and entry.  1954 East McKeesport H.S. Yearbook.


Anita Salvi

Rehearsal of “Tons of Money”

1953 East McKeesport High School Yearbook


Citation Information

Detail”U.S., School Yearbooks, 1880-2012″; Year: 1953

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Source Information

TitleU.S., School Yearbooks, 1880-2013

Anita Salvi

1954 High School Yearbook

Photo Graduation Year

East McKeesport High School

AncestryCitation Information

Detail”U.S., School Yearbooks, 1880-2012″; Year: 1954

Edit Source

Source Information

TitleU.S., School Yearbooks, 1880-2013AuthorAncestry.comPublisherAncestry.com Operations, Inc.Publisher Date2010


Tons of Money (Play)



Tons of Money (Movie)


Posting created in Gutenberg Editor – Classic Block.  All photo batch upload and composition done in WordPress.

58a-Muro Family in Wilmerding-Peter and Angie’s Marriage License, 1937, Part 2


This posting continues the story of the marriage of Peter Muro and Angie Carola through the story told in their photos and marriage license, plus memories Uncle Sammy and I shared about Angie’s siblings.

The Muro and Carola Families:  Paesani from Agropoli

With the details obtained from the Federal Census records and the Marriage License, Uncle Sammy and I noticed another recurring pattern of behavior at work between the first and second generation of Italian-Americans.  It was at work with the Serrapede family in Brooklyn and the Muro family in Wilmerding.

This pattern of behavior consisted of relatives and paesani from the first generation of immigrants from Agropoli living within very close proximity to each other after coming to America.  The Carola and Muro families in Wilmerding were one example.  The Coppola and Serrapede families of Brooklyn were another. The second generation of Italian-Americans continued this pattern after they got married.  The second generation may not always have lived on the same block but they were often within walking distance or a short drive or trolley car ride from their parent’s house.  And frequently the children of their parent’s paesani also lived close-by after they got married.  The influences of ties by blood or marriage persisted as they had in Agropoli.

From Josie’s collection:  Angie’s Wedding Photo

58a-angie muro wedding day
Studio portrait by Birch Studio.  Angie Carola Muro on her wedding day.

Angie’s wedding photo and the cardboard frame it is set in are still very clear and in what we consider good condition.  Like all of Josie’s photos they were kept in the original cardboard frames or else placed into photo albums by means of little tabs that fit on the corners of the photo.  These tabs were moistened and pressed onto the album page.  The framed photos and the albums were then stored in brown paper bags that were neatly stacked like files inside of cardboard boxes.  Since no mylar or plastic was ever used this might account for the good condition.  Also they were stored in an attic that was dry and not at all humid in the summer or damp in the winter.

Angie looks so lovely in this wedding gown that combines some style sense of the 1940s even though the sleek silhouette of the 1930s was still in vogue.

Continue reading “58a-Muro Family in Wilmerding-Peter and Angie’s Marriage License, 1937, Part 2”

58a-Muro Family in Wilmerding-Peter and Angie’s Marriage License, 1937, Part 1


When the 1930 Federal Census was taken Peter Muro was a student in High School and living in Wilmerding, Pennsylvania with his parents Nick and Rose Muro.  Mary Angela Carola, the girl he would later marry lived nearby on the same block.  As we reviewed their 1937 Marriage License and 1930 Federal Census data we noticed the repetition of a common pattern within the first and second generation Italian-Americans we knew in Brooklyn and Wilmerding.  The young men and women remained at home with their parents until the time they got married unless they got a job out-of-state.  If this was the case more likely than not it was in a city where other relatives lived who would provide lodging and help until the young person was established or went home to get married.  When a young person remained in town but needed to move out due to the large size of the family they never went far from home or the company of relatives and family.  This pattern which Uncle Sammy saw in the 1940s and 1950s continued as I grew up throughout the 1960s.  The pattern did not weaken until the 1970s advanced.

In this posting we’ll focus on how the marriage license and census data confirms this pattern in Peter and Angie’s lives.  There is also a mistake on the license that nobody noticed.  It’s rather humorous to think of how it happened.  We also share memories about Peter, Angie and the Carola family as we begin this series about Angie’s family and her marriage to Peter.

Relationship Notes

58a-perter muro chart
Pedigree chart for Peter James Muro.

Peter Muro was the son of Nick and Letizia (nee Scotti) Muro.  He was very close to his eldest sister Josie.  Peter was Sammy’s maternal Uncle and EmilyAnn’s Great Uncle.

58a-angie carola chart
Pedigree chart for Mary Angela Carola.

Mary Angela “Angie” Carola was the daughter of Guy and Rose (nee Di Luccia) Carola.  We all knew her as Angie.  She married Peter Muro in 1937.  Angie was Sammy’s Aunt and EmilyAnn’s Great Aunt.

Josie Muro Serrapede was married to Sam Serrapede.  They were EmilyAnn’s maternal Grandparents and Sammy’s parents.  Their other children were Emily and Gerry.

EmilyAnn;s note:  About the terms Great Aunt vs. Aunt and Great Uncle vs. Uncle and how I use them when discussing the relatives within my Mom’s family

I was so close to my Mom and she was so close to me that I was like an extension of her, especially in how I viewed my relationships with the older generation.  Mom always spoke of her Grandparents, Cousins, Aunts and Uncles as if they were mine, too.  There was no differentiation of the degrees of relationship.  Even though Letizia and Rose Muro were my Great Grandmothers I called them Grandma Letizia and Grandma Rose.  The term Great Aunt or Great Uncle was never used.  This is why in discussions with Uncle Sammy and even when I write I do not use the conventional terms like Great Aunt nor did any of the older generation call me a Great Granddaughter or a Great Niece.

From Josie’s Photo Album:  Our earliest photo of Peter and Angie

58a-pete and angie
Peter and Angie in an undated photo from one of Josie’s albums.  We estimate the time as late 1930s-early 1940s.

Continue reading “58a-Muro Family in Wilmerding-Peter and Angie’s Marriage License, 1937, Part 1”

Admin Notice: Good news! We own our content.

I have exchanged emails with Yashita, a WordPress Happiness Engineer regarding the question of content ownership.  She confirmed this morning that all blog owners at WordPress.com own their photos and content.  WordPress will not use them in any way.

I have pasted in below screen shots of the email.  I will look at the TOS when there is time–whenever that is in addition to the zillions of other admin details this family history project and tree keep sprouting!

This posting was created in Gutenberg using Text and Image Blocks.  The text should appear left-aligned.  Images of email should be centered.  The dividing line is also centered.

Our Family Circle: Update on the Lingle Family

It is good to be back with friends and family here at WordPress.  The Winter Break was very productive for me.  I had a chance to get back into beloved hobbies like sewing and crocheting after too long a break caused by preparing to move out of Brooklyn.

During the break Uncle Sammy and Aunt Kathie went to Miami, Florida to spend Christmas with the Lingle family.  Michael is Aunt Kathie’s son from her first marriage.  He married Katy Ester Knipp in June 2016.

Michael and Katy became the parents of  William “Jake” Lingle in 2017.  Their second child, Robert “Ace” Clark Lingle, was born  on September 3, 2018.  This Christmas Jake and Ace were featured on the postcard Michael and Katy sent out.

Ace and Jake.

Ace calmly looks on as Jake expresses his displeasure at having his photo taken.

What I loved about this postcard was the way Ace calmly posed for the photos while Jake got so upset.  I’d have thought it would be the other way around!  What makes this photo more cute is that embroidered  on their pajamas Ace has “Little Brother” and Jake has “Best Brother”.   Next time photos are taken we hope Ace can help Jake be more confident in front of the camera.

Uncle Sammy and Aunt Kathie then spent the end of December and  early part of January in Acalpulco, Mexico.  They are back in the U.S. now and easing into the New Year.

I look forward to catching up with all my family and friends.  Many happy events have unfolded in real-time since November 2018.  I will share these next time before resuming our usual postings.

This posting was created using the Text Blocks and Image Blocks of Gutenberg editor.

Admin Notice: The future of our blog is at WordPress!

From the desk of EmilyAnn Frances May

Uncle Sammy and I have considered the different scenarios for this blog in light of the forthcoming changes with the new way of blogging that the new WordPress editor, Gutenberg, creates.

There are indeed some platforms where the use of text and graphic blocks are not in force when creating a posting.  But given that some of the competing blogging platforms like SquareSpace are using blocks made us rethink the decision to leave WordPress.  SquareSpace is very popular with the young, the influential, the creative and the amateur.  While not all change is easy because it takes us out of our comfort zone, it is far better to adapt and assimilate what you need to know to get your job done.

The alternatives did not look so appealing after reviewing some platforms where blocks are not in use or many never be in use.  A good example of Typepad.  When a user signs up for their service (you have to pay) you do not have complete ownership of your content anymore.  Here are WordPress, you do retain that ownership.  That was the bottom line:  keeping the content that belongs to us.  It cannot be monetized or used any old way the blogging service thinks it can be used.  The topic is very deep and complex but for a simplified explanation please see A Royal Daughter’s Blogger vS. WordPress:  Content Ownership

There is a big investment here in terms of our time, talents, and a strong commitment to leaving the future Muro and Serrapede descendants a tangible history of our family and the times they lived in.  I will, therefore, begin the process of using Gutenberg with more determination.  I ask all readers who get the postings by email to stay in touch if anything you receive has any formatting flaws.  There are still bugs to report and work on but so far I have only had some minor ones during reviews of the email postings I’ve received.  I thank the Happiness Engineers for so much of their time and effort to teach me the basics.

So now 2019 will be a year of research plus learning new blog creation techniques.  This is another reason why I will be dedicating more time to the administrative, research and writing aspects of the family history project moving forward. 

This posting was created using Paragraph Blocks and Image Block in Gutenberg. 


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Our Family Circle: Muro-Serrapede Scanning Project Update

Uncle Sammy and I believe very strongly in giving back to the communities where we participate in real-time and online.  Making available for the common use all the documentation we have purchased is, we know, the only way to combat and defeat the careless errors and sometimes misinformation that exists in public trees.

The following documents and vital records are now on the Torregrossa & Serrapede Research Tree at Ancestry:

  • Emily L. Serrapede-professional information about her career-resume and cover letters.
  • Memorabilia from wedding of Katy Knipp and Michael Lingle.
  • Emily L. Serrapede-Bay Ridge High School Class of 1948 Yearbook entry.  Courtesy Bay Ridge High School Alumni Association.
  • Frank Jesse Torregrossa-Birth and Death Certificates.
  • Marriage Certificate of Alfonso “Al Terry” Torregrossa and Bessie Flashenberg.
  • Death Certificate of Alexander Malinowski.
  • Death Certificate of Francesco Torregrossa.
  • Death Certificate of Alfonso Torregrossa (husband of Benedetta Di Francisco Torregrossa).
  • Death Certificate of Alfonso Torregrossa (infant, son of Francesco and Caterina).
  • Marriage Certificate of Giuseppe Cassera and Bettina Torregrossa.
  • Death Certificate of Benedetta Torregrossa.
  • Death Certificate of Angelina Torregrossa (daughter of Francesco and Caterina, child).
  • Marriage Certificate of Cristofa Spinella and Mamie (Mary) Torregrossa.
  • Marriage Certificate of John Dazzo and Edith/Ethel/Ida/Eidda (yes all those names attached to one person!) Torregrossa.
  • Marriage Certificate of Gesuri “Jesse” Torregrossa and Teresa Lipani.
  • Marriage Certificate of Alphonso La Pera and Eleanor Torregrossa.
  • Birth Certificate for Alfonso “Al Terry”  Torregrossa (1902 son of Caterina and Francesco).
  • Death Certificate of Alfonso “Al Terry” Torregrossa.
  • Death Certificate of Rodolfo Dante Torregrossa.

Published using Gutenberg Editor, Classic Block, 1/12/19.

2019: In the works…what is next for Through the Byzantine Gate

Happy New Year’s to all family, friends and blogging colleagues. May you all enjoy abundant prosperity and good health in 2019. My personal wish is that each and everyone of you at some point will be taken into and uplifted by what is known as Flow.

Flow is a state of concentration a person enters when engaged in an activity they love very, very much. As the activity progresses a heightened sense of joy and well-being ensues. At first, Flow is not something you can enter at will. That comes after a continued, sincere and disciplined engagement in the activity.

Being conscious and intent upon entering Flow eventually gives one the ability to enter it little by little. As the enjoyment progresses it is possible that for a while feelings of heat, or cold, or hunger, or mild discomfort are suspended. After returning from Flow to a more usual state of consciousness one is struck by the beauty of simple things or the loveliness within a person such as a gesture or the way they speak. I find it is what I need to recharge my batteries. So I seek Flow through freewriting, blogging, investigation/research on our ancestors but most of all through the conceptual process of fashion sketching (conception)—actualizing the idea through draping or pattern drafting—manifesting the idea in final form through the sewing. Long walks also induce Flow, when the phone is turned off.

Anyone who jogs, works-out, gets involved with a good book, sketches,for example, can achieve Flow. You can also enter Flow in numerous other ways, such as complete involvement in a movie. There is much written about Positive Psychology and Flow. I recommend anyone interested seek it out and develop your own journey towards the experience and its benefits. Flow is part of my personal management system used to lessen migraine seizures.

Continue reading “2019: In the works…what is next for Through the Byzantine Gate”

Welcome 2019!

Welcome New Year!

Welcome the New Year,
Let the bells ring!

Lift up your voices;
Everyone sing!

The New Year’s beginning;
Start it off right.

Bid it good fortune
And welcome tonight.

The Old Year is passing,
But there’s none to mourn.

We are rejoicing;
The New Year is born!


Poem: Millie Motts at flickr

Graphic: Vintage New Year Greeting Card Pinterest

Published using Gutenberg:  Classic Block.