Saturday, March 22
|The Seghieri shield in marble.|
To find out even more, Elena and I went to see Doctor Sergio Nelli, the third time in three years we have met with this amazing historian to find out more about the Seghieri family. He has spent many years transferring legal contracts, court documents, church records and acts of law from Montecarlo into his computer database. This allows him to search by name and find references to anyone with the name Seghieri, and there are perhaps 100 or more listings.
Some were highly respected leaders, while others were not so noble. He found a reference to a Francesco Seghieri who was on a list of people banned from a festa in Pescia for bad behavior at previous events. A priest, Antonio Seghieri, is accused in court of being drunk and shouting profanities directed at aggrieved individuals. There is a Simone who had the nickname “Molester.”
However, there is also evidence that this same Simone founded the most noble and wealthy line of the family, one which produced numerous knights, lawyers, doctors, professors, mayors, priests, bishops, and nuns—including the descendants who financed construction of the Montecarlo altar. Leopoldo Seghieri, a doctor, went to Torino and volunteered his services in the army of King Vittorio Emmanuele in 1860 during the war to unite Italy. However, in the same era, a priest named Pietro Seghieri is listed as opposing the unification.
|This Simone was "a man of high integrity."|
“This is really special,” Elena said. “It is very rare that anyone is ever allowed to go inside the crypt.”
Dr. Nelli also gave me some interesting information about the family of my great grandmother Ines Capocchi, the wife of Torello Seghieri. He had just begun doing some research on this family, and he gave me names and some dates for descendants going back four more generations than I had previously found. He also told me that the first Capocchi, Iacopo, had moved to Montecarlo from Pistoia around 1500. The surname Capocchi likely came from his given name. It gradually morphed from Iacopo to Iocopocchio to Capocchio to Capocchi. Unfortunately, my ancestors temporarily moved out of Montecarlo for a time between the 1600s and 1700s, and so the trail between Iacopo and Ines is missing a few links. It may be possible to search the archives of surrounding churches to find the missing generations, though.
Elena and I also made a stop just down the hill from Montecarlo to meet Fausto Spadoni, a man I had heard about several times but not met. He had once worked as an accountant for the comune of Montecarlo, and I had wondered if he might have been a descendant of one of the brothers of my great grandfather Pietro, who had lived in Pescia before moving to San Salvatore in the late 1800s. His brothers Francesco and Angelo also moved somewhere near San Salvatore, so maybe Fausto was one of their descendants. Unfortunately, he is not, he said. His grandfather Guido had lived in Buggiano, not Pescia.
|Fausto Spadoni, left, with Paul Spadoni in Fausto's home.|