Seeking immigration & naturalization records of Carmine & Michael Rossi

Hi all, maybe someone can kindly point me in the right direction here. I have been researching my great grandfather and great great grandfather. My great grandfather died in NYC in 1912 (i have his death certificate and date of birth). My great great grandfather bought his son's burial plot a few days after his son's death. I learned this from researching the cemetery deed. I have been trying to find my great grandfather's immigration/naturalization records and I've hit a complete road block. Also, I have been unable to find any reference to either my great great grandfather or his son in any of the census data, either Federal or NY State. I've also come up blank in reviewing the City directories. This is frustrating because I do have my great grandfather's address in Manhattan from the death certificate. I also suspect that my great great grandfather continued to live in NYC after his son's death because he gave permission to a third party from Manhattan to inter an infant in my great grandfather's grave. I've done a significant amount of searching on Family Search and Ancestry and a lot of the public sites, but i cannot find anything more about these particular ancestors. My Great great grandfather's name was Carmine Rossi. My great grandfather's name was Michael Rossi. Both were born in Italy. My great grandfather was born in 1861 and died in 1912. I do not know what region of Italy that they were from. Thank you in advance for any kind assistance that you can offer.

  • Hi All,

    Here is some additional information. And thank you both for your kind response.

    My great grandfather Michael lived at 464 West 26 street Manhattan, New York City at the time of his death. According to the death certificate he was born in Italy and had been in the U.S. for 22 years. He lived in New York City for all 22 years. His occupation on the death certificate is listed as butcher. Michaels’ wife (my great grandmother) was Catherine. Her family name was Rongo. I do not know if they were married in the U.S. She died on the very same day as Michael in 1949. As far as I know they had two children, James (1899) and Nancy (1901).

    My great grand parents are interred in Calvary Cemetery, Queens. It is the largest cemetery in New York City. Sadly none of the cemetery records are digitized and the staff is less than helpful when conducting research. Because of the pandemic I could only do research over the telephone. It took me many phone calls to get responses about the cemetery deed. According to what I was told Carmine J. Rossi purchased the plot immediately after my Great grandfather’s death. I’ve come to believe that Carmine must have been a resident of New York City because a year after my great grandfather’d death, a five month old infant was interred in the burial plot. I was able to trace this particular family to 70 James Street, Manhattan NYC. I’m guessing that since Carmine Rossi owned the burial plot he must have known this family and agreed to bury their child in the grave? If it is any help, Carmine was married to Carmella Cecere ( spelled Cecera on one other document).

    Thank you again for your kind assistance.


  • Yours is an interesting study on how names, spellings, dates, and possibly birth order were fluid. Even the number of children birthed varied.

    I did not find evidence of your great-great-grandfather Carmine in the U.S. (Is it possible he never was here?)  I did locate some evidence of Michael.  There are obvious gaps in the records found that should be filled.

    The following info is given in chronological order.  It was found, and in some ways makes more sense, in reverse order—I started with James, son of Michael, and worked backwards. (You may already have some of this info.)  The dates are in the YYYY-MM-DD format.

    1897-06-09  Birth Certificate - Michele Pellegrino Rossi

    Borough: Manhattan

    Certificate: 0024842

    Father: Michele Mother: Caterina Longo    (records consistently say Longo with an “L”)

    Address: 86 James St

    1897-07-17  Catholic Christening Record – Michaelam Rossi

    Parish: St. Joachim

    Father: Michele Mother: Caterina Longo

    **Note: The included christening records on FindMyPast only had transcripts. Other entries had images attached. (The site may attach the images in the future, or it may be possible, with a subscription, to use the Browse feature for the parish of St. Joachim.)

    1898-12-02  Birth Certificate - Ruggiero Francesco Russo    [James]

    Borough: Manhattan

    Certificate: 0047932

    Father: Michele Mother: Caterina Longo

    Address: 86 James St

    1899-01-08  Catholic Christening Record – Remigium Rosso    [James]

    Parish: St. Joachim

    Birth: 1898-12-03

    Father: Michele Mother: Caterina Longo

    1900-06-03  Catholic Christening Record – Annumptiatan Rossi [Nancy]

    Parish: St. Joachim

    Birth: 1900-03-20

    Father: Michele Mother: Caterina Lougo   (probably a transcription error)

    **Note:  I could not locate her birth certificate.  The NY Geographical Birth Index did not show her as being born at 86 James St—maybe she born elsewhere, or it was just not recorded.

    1900-06-13  U.S. Census - Michael Roso, wife Maria, & family

    Address: 86 James St, Manhattan

    Occupation: Butcher

    NOTE:  The address is the same as found on the previous birth certificates.  Son Mike’s info lines up pretty well, but I am not sure where James & Nancy are. I did not locate a birth certificate from around 1894 that could be Pipania.  It is interesting that the first two children’s names are Carmelo/a—a possible sign of a naming pattern after grandparents?

    1902  Trow’s Business Directory of Greater NY – Michele Rossi

    p.231 (image 158 of 1241)

    Listed under Butchers

    36 ½ Oak & 160 Elizabeth

    36 ½ Oak is just around the corner from 86 James St (see fire ins. map links below).

    1903   Trow’s Business Directory of Greater NY – Michele Rossi

    p.242    (image 161 of 1262)

    Listed under Butchers

    36 ½ Oak & 160 Elizabeth

    **These are the only two city directory entries, business or residential, I found that seemly tie directly to Michael.

    Sanborn Fire Insurance map from 1894+

    Manhattan, V. 1,

    James St is split between maps 10 and 11.  Use the Zoom button for the map, make it Full Screen, then you can zoom in more.

    Plate 10

    Plate 11

    G.W. Bromley & Co. Map from 1897

    Plate 3 -- 86 James St & 36 ½ Oak

    More blurry than the Sanborn maps but it shows James St on one map.

    Plate 8 – 160 Elizabeth St     

    This seems to be a Saw Mill ??

    ** I lost the trail of Michael and never regained it.

    1905  NY State Census

    Didn’t locate the family. I manually checked and they were not found at 86 James St.

    1910   U.S. Census

    Didn’t locate the family at 86 or 65 James St, or at 464 W 26th St (address you said was on Michael’s death certificate)

    1915   NY State Census

    Didn’t locate the family at 86 or 65 James St.

    1917-11-24   Catholic Marriage – Annutiatam [Nancy] Rossi & Joannem Spera

    Parish: St Joachim

    (Has image attached to transcript)

    1918-09-12   WWI Draft Registration Card – Remiglio Anthony Rossi   [James]


    Permanent Home Address: 65 James St

    Currently at NY City Reformatory

    Nearest Relative: Katherine Rossi, 65 James St

    1920  U.S. Census

    Didn’t locate the family.

    1925  NY State Census – James Ross & wife Edith

    Address: 129 – 144th St, New York, New York

    **Note: I did not locate a marriage license for James and Edith.

    1930  U.S.  Census - Annuzita [Nancy] Spero with husband John

    222 High St, Brooklyn, Kings, NY

    **Note:  Two households listed above Annuzita (but next door at 220) is Carmine and Catherine Rossi.  Carmine was born about 1859 in Italy.  There is a possibility that he is connected to your family.  For instance, could he be a brother to Michael?  If there is a connection, maybe he was the Carmine who purchased the burial plot.

    1940  U.S. Census - James Rossi in household of sister Nancy Spero & her husband John

    Address:100 Heyward St, New York, Kings, NY

    James, his wife Edith, and two children are living with him.

    1942-02-16  WWII Draft Registration Card – James Remiglio Rossi

    Kings, NY

    Birth 1898-12-03, NY

    Person who will always know address: Mrs. Nancy Spero, sister

    1950  U.S. Census - James R Rossi, wife Mary, & family

    Address: 742- 46th St, [Brooklyn], New York, Kings, NY

    Daughter Angela & husband Thomas Trezza residing with James

    A Side Note about Mary Lombardi:

    Mary had a husband named Frederick Brown (I researched her to make sure I had the correct family in the 1950 Census).

    1925 NY Census:

    1930 Census:

    Daughter Angela

    1940 Census:

    Daughter Angela. Brother Anthony Lombari residing with Mary.

    I am not sure where this man fits in—could this be Pipania on the 1900 Census, with a different birth date?

    Joseph Rossi

    in the U.S., Social Security Applications and Claims Index, 1936-2007


    Joseph Rossi





    Birth Date:

    16 Aug 1892

    Birth Place:

    New York City, New York [New York Cit]


    Michael Rossi


    Catherine Longo


    Feb 1938: Name listed as JOSEPH ROSSI

    An interesting New York passenger list:


    Maria Rossi



    Ethnicity/ Nationality:




    Birth Date:

    abt 1862

    Departure Port:

    Genoa, Italy

    Arrival Date:

    4 Apr 1893

    Arrival Port:

    New York, New York, USA

    Ship Name:

    Kaiser Wilhelm II

    Maria Rossi traveled with four children.  There is not enough information to connect this to your family but it is worth checking out.

    Son Giacomo has a number written in pencil by his entry.  This should correspond with a naturalization record.  It would be worthwhile to track down the court that issued this, and find the record.

    Some Helpful links I used  (beyond Ancestry & FamilySearch)

    -- One Step Pages by Steve Morse

    I cannot recommend this site highly enough.  Not only are there tools to search censuses & arrivals, the site has a TON of New York-specific tools – state census, vital records, etc.  I used these extensively in this search.


    Link to New York Catholic Records available

    --German Genealogy Group

    Has NY vital records databases

    -- New York City Municipal Archives Vital Record site

    Newly put online—not all records are available yet.  A large block of death certificates for Manhattan have not been put online.  (The site has some quirks.  For instance, some certificate numbers do not match up with the correct image.  Indices available may have mis-transcribed information, leading to wrong search results.  You must enter the exact spelling for the record to be found.)

    -- New York Directories links on Wikipedia (there are links at the top of the page to Brooklyn & Queens).  Includes links to NY Public Library directories, as well as other sites

    -- Reclaim the Records on Internet Archive (

    One I specifically used for this was the New York Geographical Birth Index. also has a tool for this.[]=subject%3A%22New+York+City%22

    -- NY Public Library digital collection - links to maps, including fire insurance maps

    -- List of Sicilian and Italian Given Names and some names possibly used in English

    Hopefully all this will give you some ideas/avenues for you to research.

    Happy Hunting!

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