My great, great Grandfather was the brave immigrant, leaving home to travel to places unknown in search of a new life. Natale Bacigalupi was born in 1861 in a small town in the province of Genoa; Italy in the region Liguria called Cicanga. He came to the US in 1875 as a young boy and settled in San Francisco. Natale’s last name was originally Bacigalupo but changed it to the plural spelling (Bacigalupi) once in California.
For a short while he worked in the vegetable fields (I know–vegetable fields near SF?? who would have thought?). Soon enough he saved some money and bought a small fishing boat. Using the skills he learned in Cicagna as a fisherman he started fishing in the SF bay, selling his catches every morning to the fish market. After several years he made the trip north to Santa Rosa. Here, he did a variety of trades including running a shoe store, a coal yard and finally opening up the family market, following the earthquake of 1906.
He named the store N. Bachigalupi, Groceries and Provisions at 4th and Davis St. Over a period of time he also purchased land in Sonoma County, mostly apple orchards and several acres of vineyards. Natale was also on the board of the first Bank of America branch in Sonoma County. Natale and his sister ran the store together until one of his sons Al and my great grandfather took it over at the ripe age of 17.
I am lucky enough to have a fantastic generational photo of my father, his father, grandfather and great grandfather. Four generations of our family all together in one photo. Pretty amazing!