My Genealogy

Monday, August 10, 2009

In search of Antonia

In my previous post, A surprise at the National Archives , I mentioned the discovery of an elder sister to Antonio, who died two years before his birth, at the tender age of 4.

Now this is actually a help to try to find the origins of the Barbara family (see Before Bone, Algeria ). Why? Whilst I have no idea of the year in which the couple was married, with Antonina's death at the age of four in 1836 I can retrace her birth date to 1832. So now rather than searching blindly for a marriage, I can search for a the birth of a specific Antonia Barbara to a couple Giuseppe Barbara and Rosa Vella in the year 1832.

Not having found any such record in Zurrieq, I started looking in the neighbouring towns.


Having recently discovered that an acquaintance of mine was a Barbara from Mqabba, I felt inclined to start my search from here.

From I found the opening hours of the parish priest's office for Mqabba, and today, Monday I drove there in the afternoon. The parish priest was a bit hesitant at first, but then was very helpful in trying to find such a record - but unfortunately to no avail.

Hal Safi

My next stop was Hal Safi. I had no internet access in my car so I just tried my luck - and lucky I was for I found the office open. The young parish priest was very helpful. The records can be very efficiently searched due to an index by surname and by year. The only Barbara baptism records in the 1800s were in 1800 and 1882 - so again the search was futile.


To make sure I did not miss the record in Zurrieq itself, my next and last stop for the day was in Zurrieq - again without checking beforehand whether the office would be open. For the second time that day I was lucky - but the office only had 5 minutes left. The Archpriest did me the kind favour to allow me to search - given I did not take too long. In those 5 minutes I confirmed that she was not born there.

Next Mission

Having covered Mqabba and Safi, next time I plan to visit Kirkop and Qrendi - the remaining two towns around Zurrieq...

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