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Celebrate Your Family Heritage and Remember Its Unique History

Into memoir writing? Thinking of writing a remembrance about an individual? Your immediate family? Or your clan? Perhaps, a neighborhood? An ethnic community? Looking for some inspiration? Sample stories?


The Calitrani American community has done that in three books! The descendants of Calitri, a small Italian mountaintop town in the Southern Apennine Mountains, were able to record a variety of remembrances: some about a notable family member; some about a family event. There were recollections of customs and traditions of their forebears, some are from the research they accomplished of their immigrant ancestor coming to the United States; there are stories of how they remained united in the New World. All such work is compiled in three books by Mario Toglia, together with family photographs, researched documents and pictures of heirloom artifacts… all with captions relating to a historical or genealogical timeline.


You don’t have to be a descendant of Calitri. In fact, you don’t have to be of Italian descent to enjoy the many written accounts. Anyone interested in wanting to give a gift that lasts for generations will find creative samples in Mario Toglia’s books which will inspire you to write a story about a family member, a neighborhood community or a family heirloom that you want to pass on to your relatives or future generations to come.

Together the three books contain some 298 varied articles and stories.

Celebrate family heritage and remember unique histories through the pages of


They Came By Ship: The Stories of the Calitrani Immigrants in America (502 pp)

ISBN 13 (SOFT): 978-1-4257-4282-9
ISBN 13 (HARD): 978-1-4257-4281-2


Preserving Our History (396 pp)

ISBN 13 (SOFT): 978-1-4797-4997-3
ISBN 13 (HARD): 978-1-4797-4996-6


Celebrating The Heritage.(650 pp)

ISBN 13 (SOFT): 978-1-5035-8222-4
ISBN 13 (HARD): 978-1-5035-8219-4


What people have said about the stories in these books:


My mother Rose Mary died in 2009. In retrospect, I have to say I enjoyed working on the story of her father, as it forced me to talk to Mom in detail about this important piece of family history. Had I not done so, it would have been lost upon her passing.

— George S. Brooks II


We can only read with envy, memorable stories by those honoring their past, celebrating their heritage and remembering their forebears. These varied narratives are not only of interest to historians and to those of Calitrani descent, but also to those who seek inspiration in saving their own family legacy in written form.

— Michael S. Genovese


I can appreciate all the research done to preserve the stories of our immigrant ancestors from Calitri. This book is a gift to all those with ties to that beautiful hilltop town in southern Italy.

— Frances Muccioli Newcombe


I had the good fortune to be born and raised in North Tarrytown, a village immortalized by Washington Irving as Sleepy Hollow. Life in my village was increasingly influenced through most of the 20th century by Calitrani immigrants and their children. Writing about them and their accomplishments has been enjoyable and interesting.

— Victor A. Rizzi Jr.


Calitri has an age-old history…and a truly remarkable heritage that its emigrants faithfully carried with them to the New World. It is befitting that this town’s continuing history transplanted in America is being recognized and recorded.

— Frances Gautieri Brown


How wonderful that the descendants of the Calitrani immigrants are determined to preserve their unique history as a microcosm of the greater Italian American family!

— Mary Jane DiMasi


As a member of a family leaves this life, it is important that we leave a bit of our history for the next generation. I’m glad I asked Aunt Mae about the history she knew. I’m pleased that my daughter Marlene chose to pass it on to the next. After all, we owe it to the family.

— Joan Fastiggi Halper


There is a proverb that says “The spoken word is like a flame that disappears in the wind, but the written word is an eternal flame that burns forever.” I am happy that people have taken the time to record these stories in writing.

— Grace Basile


 Ah, the Memories…..the family gatherings, the family traditions, the family stories. For me, to write them is gratifying; to read them, nostalgic; to leave them to my great-grandchildren, the recorded words become a link to our past; to have them for their great-grandchildren is a gift that is eternal and priceless.

— Al Galgano