Emidio Luongo's 1920 passport photo.
Out of the entire U.S. records collection on Ancestry.com ... the passport applications are my favorite. Not only do they include a good deal of basic info (date of birth, address, immigration and citizenship info, etc.), but also the applicant's reason for travel. This can often give us a glimpse into what was going on in their lives at that particular moment. Plus, the later ones required photos ... which is just icing on the cake!
Emidio Luongo was born 18 January 1886 (although his passport shows a date of 17 January) in Torre le Nocelle to Giovanni Luongo and Maria Regina Penna. Below is Emidio's pedigree chart:
Emidio Luongo Pedigree
From Emidio's 1920 passport application we learn that he is returning to Torre to settle the estate of his father and bring his mother back with him to the States. I can only imagine the sorrow and regret he must have felt during that two week passage. It had been ten years since he'd seen Torre ... and during those years perhaps he kept telling himself he'd return for a visit ... just as soon as he had a bit more saved.
Mother Regina must have been in similar turmoil - devastated over the loss of her husband, yet looking forward to seeing her son. Perhaps she was excited about moving to a new country, yet still heartbroken over the idea of leaving the only place she had ever known. She would have been sixty-two years of age at that time ...and well aware that she would likely never return.
It was almost ten years ago when I made my first trip to Torre. The minute I stepped out of the car and into the piazza... I let out a sigh of relief. I didn't know a soul, but felt I had finally returned home. And every time we leave I am overcome with such an irrational sense of sorrow. The autostrada heading to Avellino snakes back around the mountain so that I get one last glimpse of Torre in the distance ... and I worry that I'll never return. Perhaps this is a taste of what Emidio and Regina felt?
Date Filed: 15 March 1920
Date Issued: 24 March 1920
Name: Emidio Luongo
Birth: 17 January 1886 in Torre le Nocelle, Italy
Father: Giovanni Luongo, born in Torre le Nocelle, deceased
Emigration: 6 March 1910 from the port of Naples
Address: 1910-1920 uninterrupted in Winchester MA
Citizenship: Naturalized 1 March 1920 in Boston MA
Residence: 26 Hill St., Winchester MA
Reason For Travel: To settle estate and bring mother to U.S.
Date of Travel: 31 March 1920, returning within five months
Description of Applicant:
Mouth: Long - "red xxx"
Witness: Guglielmo Rotondi
Residence: 199 Laurel St. Melrose MA
Passport Application - page one
Passport Application - page two