Traveling in Piemonte Italy in 2005, I learned there are gold mines in Piemonte (dating back to pre Roman times) so, of course, I had to visit the gold mining museum in Valle Anzasca in the Alps.

I didn't find any trace of Nic, but had a great time.

Maybe Nic picked the California Gold Country as his new home because he knew about gold mining.


Gold mine entrance in Piemonte...looks a lot like Sierra County, California

Unfortunately, all Italian vital records are filed in the town halls, and there are hundreds of towns in Piemonte, so if you don't know where your ancestor was born, it is almost impossible to find out anything.

Archivio di Stato, Torino, Piemonte, Italy

However, all twenty-year-old men in Italy were supposed to register for the draft starting in 1865 and those records, the Lista di Leva, are stored at a handful of regional State Archives. I check in some of these archives for the year Nic would have been 20, but didn't find him. The friendly, helpful archivists told me that many young men didn't register, especially if they were planning to emigrate. I don't know if Nic didn't register, or if I just didn't find his name.

Later as the History Museum in Torino I learned that Italy was trying to colonize in Africa around that time

Click here to see what Nic missed by coming to California instead of joining the army.


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