It’s Week 8 of the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks project, created by genealogist Amy Johnson Crow. And for this week, the theme is I Can Identify.
I have a story about identifying my grandfather’s face in a newspaper photo. I was doing some research on John F. Kennedy’s presidential campaign, and came across a photograph of a 1960 campaign appearance in Scranton, Pennsylvania. And there, onstage with JFK, I identified my own grandfather!
I knew my paternal grandfather, Bart Petrini, had campaigned for Kennedy, but I had never seen such a photograph. (In fact, more recently I found another one, a photo of the candidate with a small group of men, including my grandfather.) I have also learned that he was JFK’s campaign treasurer for the state of Pennsylvania. None of this should be surprising to me. My grandfather was county sheriff and mayor of his town, and active in Democratic politics. I even remember a copy of Profiles In Courage signed by the president himself and given to my grandfather in appreciation for his work. (I was sure my father had it, but he doesn’t remember it, and now I’m afraid it was inadvertently given away or thrown out.)
Here is the photo in which I identified my grandfather. He is sitting onstage about halfway across the front row. He is the one with what might be a light-colored jacket or banner across his legs.
2 thoughts on “52 Ancestors, Week 8: I Can Identify”
Wow, a great find for family history. I notice the photo was taken just days before that consequential Presidential election!