Did Italian immigrants in America change their last name from Guglielmo to Williams?

+3 votes
141 views
Hi! I am a newbie at researching my family history. I am having a little trouble finding information on my paternal grandmother's history as I cannot find information about the first generation that arrived from Italy. My grandmother's family (her mother's parents) came to New York from Italy (lived in/near Palermo, Sicily). Her mother's name was Mary Margaret Williams 1909-1956  (married Thomas Fieldhouse). The mother of Mary, who I believe would be first generation in America, was Anna Williams, maiden name Capuano. From census info, I *think* Anna's husband name is Vincent James, but I'm not sure. While trying to find information I have come across the last name Guglielmo (and Gughlemo) a few times and was wondering if this could be their Italian last name which was changed to Williams in America? I read that Guglielmo is interchanged with William as a first name. If anyone has information on that history I would appreciate it!! Again, I'm new to this and to this site, so apologies if I'm asking in wrong place. Thank you!
in Genealogy Help by Sarah Rothell G2G Rookie (220 points)

Palermo civil births and marriages have been indexed and published in several volumes beginning in 1810 and going to the late 1800’s (births) and very early 1900’s (marriages). You can often find the original records. The books are on Family Search, and can be searched from home, although you need be at a FHC to search the films.

The volumes of birth and marriage records for many communities are almost always individually indexed.

Church records have be filmed for only some of the Palermo parishes and are also available at a Family Search. The civil birth records will sometimes name the parish of the baptism.

The civil records are, of course, in Italian, but the church records are in Latin; however the Latin is pretty basic.

The Italian website Antenati at http://www.antenati.san.beniculturali.it/?lang=en is also very useful for Italian records in general.

The website Geneanet is sometimes useful for Italian family trees.

Thank you SO much for the info!

1 Answer

+1 vote
Wikipedia says that Gugliemo is the Italian form of William ... so it's very possible
by David Williams G2G Crew (320 points)

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