The Lafranchi story, continued…

Mark LesinaFrom Mark Lesina, United States

Giuseppe Michele Lafranchi (1819-1909) married Maria Margarita Pozzi (1822-1891) and together they had eight children in Coglio, Switzerland.  Their children were Giovanni Francesco, Giuseppe Michelle, Virgilo, Celestino, Giovanni Battista, Vittore, Angiolina and Maria Giacominia Lafranchi. At one time Maria Margarita Pozzi-Lafranchi’s headstone was on the outside wall of the Church in Coglio – I believe it had been moved last time I was there.

As mentioned in the article of the Lesina family from Giumaglio, Angelica Lesina (1865-1946), waas the daughter of Guiliano Lesina and Anna Maria Giumini of Giumalgio. She married Giovanni Lafranchi of Coglio (1852-1923) and together they had four children, all born in Coglio, Pia, Alfredo, Alfonso Lafranchi and Giglia Lafranchi-Pons.


Giovanni Lafranchi came to Prince Rupert Sound on the West Coast of Canada and then to Seattle, Washington, where he worked for several years before returning to Coglio. About the time Giovanni returned to Coglio, his son Alfonso immigrated to the States. A few years later, Alfredo would join him in Seattle, as well. The two daughters stayed in Coglio and Giglia’s descendants still reside there today.

Angelica and Giovanni Lesina Lafranchi, Coglio


The interesting fact in one of the letters Alfonso wrote to his parents was that Alfredo wanted to come to the States, Alfonso wrote that Alfredo should wait a little while – in the mean time, Alfredo had not received this letter, booked passage to the States and wrote that he was coming – the two letters crossed in the post and the day that Alfonso received the letter from Switzerland stating that Alfredo was coming to the States, Alfredo arrived on his doorstep in Seattle.

The brothers worked in the Seattle area and eventually went to work for their uncles Pacifico, Elvezio and Guiseppe Santino Lesina on their ranch in Glide, Oregon. After working on the ranch, they moved to Oklahoma to attend the university there. Later they returned to Seattle. Alfredo never married and eventually moved to California. Alfonso married while at the university and would lived in the Seattle area the remainder of his life. Neither returned to Coglio. Angie, Alfonso’s daughter, remembers her father saying that they could tell time while tending the goats in the mountain, by where the shadows fell in the valley.

Vittore Lafranchi was a school teacher for many years in Valle Maggia. Vittore born in Coglio (1862-1938) married Oliva Ricioli of Maggia – they would live in Maggia (Maggia is the village prior to Coglio).


Together they would have 14 children. Virginia J Lafranchi who married Giuseppe “Joseph” Albondio Lafranchi (son of Giuseppe Lafranchi and Celestina Tomasi), immigrated to Seattle, Virgilo Lafranchi (Pierina Garzoli), Alfonso Lafranchi (Lina Garzoli), Fredelino Lafranchi (Zelma Cocini), Rita Lafranchi (Walter Martinelli), Amalia Lafranchi, Adolfo Lafranchi (Lillie Padalina – Emma Zinniker), Irma LAfranchi (Mario Bonetti), Achillie Lafranchi (I), Achille Lafranchi (II) (Elvezia Zanini), Maria Lafranchi, Irene Lafranchi (Gioacchino Belloli), Ottorino Lafranchi (Adele Crescenzio) and Pierino Lafranchi (Giannaina Ortelli). Of these siblings some stayed in Ticino while others immigrated to the States, mainly California – but as in the case of Virginia to Washington. An article recalling the days of Vittore as a teacher is in the 1961 Almanacco Valmaggese.

Grandchildren of Vittore and Oliva Lafranchi


Descendants of  Vittore Lafranchi, Maggia


Celestino Lafranchi (1855-1937) born in Coglio married Elvezia Lafranchi – who we believe died in the Seattle area around 1910 before Celestino returned to Coglio. They had three children Michele, Pierino and Onorina Lafranchi.

Virglio Lafranchi (1847-1928)

Maria Giacominia Lafranchi (1859-1931)

Angiolina Lafranchi (Coglio 1866 – Locarno 1939).

Giuseppe Michelle Lafranchi (1850-1905) married Vittorina Lafranchi (1857-1933) (daughter of Flippo Lafranchi and Lucia DelNotaro). They had Anna Margherita, Cristina Maria, Giuseppe Filippo, Enrico, Lugi Elvezio and Giuseppe Carol. I believe they lived in Maggia.

Giovanni Battista Lafranchi (1845- ) married Giacomina Respini (1839 – ). He was known as Battista – Please note, two brothers having the first name of Giovanni, one uses this while the other uses their middle name. Names were often “recycled” as they people from Ticino used the old naming convention naming the children after, parents, grandparents, aunt and uncles etc – if you notice may of the people in each generation have the same names.

Coglio, 1930s


Even though Coglio is a small village, it has many people around the world that draw their family origins from it and call Coglio home. I am reminded of the story that Virginia Lafranchi’s daughter Florina once told me – She was on an airplane flying somewhere and she started speaking with the lady next to her. They somehow got on the subject of family origins and soon realized both their families were from Ticino… Well I should say, not only Ticino, but both descendants of different Lafranchi lines from Coglio, Mabel’s grandmother was Gemma Lafranchi that married a Mazzoni.

4 thoughts on “The Lafranchi story, continued…

  1. Ciao, Lafranchi Filippo e Lucia Delnotaro erano i miei bisnonni.
    Purtroppo non parlo inglese e mi è difficile comprendere quanto scritto, peccato!

  2. Ciao Renata, puoi fare clic sul italiana nella parte superiore della pagina, così la traduce in inglese alla lingua italiana. Debra

  3. Hallo
    My name is Cristina and I am a Lafranchi. My father was the son of Pierino Lafranchi and Giannina Ortelli. His Name was Vittore Lafranchi.
    I was very pleased to find the Story of my family 🙂


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.