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Old Apr 5, 2004, 2:19 PM   #11
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It takes but two older people to be the parents of a slew of children who, in turn, can swell the family population with grandchildren. By the time you get done adding in all the in-laws, you could actually have a photo that looks like this one. Granted, you could certainly be correct that it isn't a family, but I've always had a vision of Italians as being very family-oriented.
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Old Apr 5, 2004, 4:01 PM   #12
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If grandpa and ma are standing in the far back, it is strange their are not placed in front with some of the smallest ofspring.

Doing a quick count; those 19 persons, some are couples, only have 8 kids to take to the family gathering with grandpa and ma? What happened? Birth control? Disaster? And what happened to the sister of grandma and other old aunt and uncles? I rather think the most obvious a company picknick.
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Old Apr 5, 2004, 4:23 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bcoultry
I think Rod's way off on the date for the first photo. 1940, give or take a few years. Though styles are certainly likely to differ amongst countries, the clothing I'm looking at came quite a bit before the 60's.
1935, to be correct !
Northern Italy, Occhiobello, Santa Maria Maddalena, very very near Po River.
The two people in the middle of the shot were my father's grand-parents.
Even if I do not have evidences , I really think Barbara is right in her guesses. So , that is supposed to be all of the parents.

They were farmers.
My grand-mother had about 10 brother/sisters.
And the same was for my grand-father.
It was common those times for farmers : it simply meant more arms for working the land.
My grand-mother is the one on the right sitting with a newborn on her legs : my father.

The second shots shows my pa and my grand mother some years later.

None of them is alive any more.

I was born in 1963.
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Old Apr 5, 2004, 4:39 PM   #14
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So now we know your age. Forty-one or forty-two, depending on when your birthday is.

I've gathered that large numbers of children in farming families is something that, until recently, was extremely common and for exactly the reason you give, Sergio. Also, when many children died early in life, it was, to put it crudely, necessary to continue producing children to replace those who didn't make it. Add to this the knowledge of birth control but not the means to be accurate about it, and we get an even higher frequency of large families. All in all, in societies where family is the means to survival, large families are a necessity.

All these photos have been good for sharpening our sight, but they've also been good as a reminder of where real history lies: amongst the people rather than their governments.
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