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A Version Of The Cavalletto Family Tree

This version of the family history was  posted on the web in 2003 and was recovered from an archive after the site stopped working: (at

It incorporates family history and genealogical research done by members of the California Cavalletto family during the 1990s.

Two branches of the Cavaletto family settled in the Santa Barbara, California area. The original settler of the family in Santa Barbara was Aventino Cavalletto.

The story goes that Aventino worked on the Panama Canal for the French company that began the project. He became sick, perhaps from yellow fever or malaria, and was sent to New York to recuperate. While there, someone told him that California was a good place to recover his health and that Santa Barbara, with its Mediterranean climate, was particularly nice. So, he went there and settled in 1884.

In 1886 Aventino ran a boarding house on Rancheria Street. In 1888 he was joined by his wife, Clementina Pagliotti, and their nine year old son Lodovico, known as Coto. Later a second son Jack was born. After 1907 Aventino subleased some land from the three Pomatto brothers. In 1913, he and his brother Jack bought 200 acres at Coal Oil Point.

Aventino wrote to his nephew Michele Cavaletto telling him that, if he wanted to come to America, he would help him to find a job. So in 1892, Michele Cavaletto, 21, and his brother Giovanni Battista Cavalletto, 16, decided to try it. As promised, Aventino helped them to settle in. Later followed Eugenia, Margherita, and Giovanni. Moreover, two of their sister Francesca’s children emigrated later as adults.

Michele worked for awhile and then returned to Italy to marry Caterina Cavaletto. In California he worked on the historic San Jose Vineyard, then leased it, and finally purchased it in 1900.  In 1906 he acquired the ranch on Yaple Avenue. Michele operated the winery that had been built by Mission padres in 1804 until 1918 when prohibition took over. In 1921, he purchased his brother Giovanni’s ranch along the San Jose Creek before Giovanni and his family returned to Italy.

Joannes Ludovicus Cavaletto b. ca. 1600) is the earliest known member of this family. He had at least one son Franciscus Cavaletto.

Franciscus Cavaletto (b. ca. 1620 at Rivarolo) married on February 16, 1648, Anna Nida (b. 10/15/1628 at Rivarolo) the daughter of Jo Petrus Nida and Bartholonea Bertrami). The couple had a son Joannes Ludovicus Cavaletto.

Joannes Ludovicus Cavaletto (b. 9/15/1660 at Rivarolo) m. 4/25/1694 Maria Paliotto (b. 2/24/1676) daughter of Marco Antonio Paliotto and his wife Antonia ?. They had a son Franciscus Cavaletto.

Franciscus Cavaletto (b. 1/7/1706 at Rivarolo) had a son Joannes Ludovicus Cavaletto.

bullet Joannes Ludovicus Cavaletto (b. 3/10 1741 at Rivarolo) m. Marta Caterina Preverino

bullet Franciscus Dominicus Cavaletto (b. 12/7/1769 at Rivarolo, IT) m. Margarita Drueti

bullet SPECULATION: Does Giuseppe Cavaletto (deceased in 1871, father of Francesco and grandfather of Defendente) fit here? Also, is this Giuseppe Cavaletto the same as the Giuseppe Cavaletto (b. ca. 1800) that fathered the Spring Valley clan?

bullet Francesco Cavaletto m. Maria Pagliotti

bullet Defendente Cavaletto (b. 1845)?
bullet Joannes Lodovico Cavaletto (b. 4/1/1802 at Rivarolo, IT) m. 2/4/1828 Caterina Cecilia Verna (b. 11/22/1811 at Rivarolo, IT) daughter of Joannes Baptista Verna and Rosa Maria Griffa. Reportedly Lodovico and Caterina had twenty-one children although in all probability quite a few never made it to adulthood. This family apparently owned “il Cortile della Signora” (the Farmhouse of the Lady), one of the best in Vesignano.

bullet Aventino Cavaletto married Clementina Pagliotti.

bullet Lodovico [Cato] Cavaletto
bullet Jack Cavaletto. Employed in law, banking, and ranching.
bullet ? Cavaletto (brother mentioned but left unidentified by Geo. A. Cavaletto in his letter of March 14, 1994)
bullet Teresina Cavaletto (b. 1849 d. 1925) m. Defendente Cavaletto (b. 1845 d. 1915) of Vesignano a son of Francesco Cavaletto [a son of Giuseppe] and Maria Pagliotti. Teresina and Defendente Cavaletto were cousins. Defendente and Teresina had eight children (plus other four who died as babies).

bullet  Marietta Cavaletto (b. 1871 at Vesignano, d. 1938 at San Bernardo, Chile) married Antonio Germano (b. 1872 at Pasquaro, d. 1921 at Santiago, Chile). The family migrated to Chile in 1907.


Caterina Felicita Germano (b. 1900 at Vesignano, d. 1982 at San Bernardo, Chile), the only daughter of Antonio and Marietta, married Roque Osés (b. 1891, d. 1966), a Spaniard. The couple had seven children, all of whom live in Chile except Teresa.


Antonio Osés (b. 1927), m. Begoña Aguirre. They have two sons, one daughter, and five grandchildren.


Elena Osés (b. 1929), m. Gilberto Angel. No issue.


Catalina Osés (b. 1930).


Maria Teresa Osés [called Tere] (b. 1934), m. Juan Bengoechea. They live in Spain, in a small Basque village, Juan’s hometown. No issue.


Fernando Osés (b. 1936), m. Anita Bronzic. They have two daughters and six grandchildren.


Francisco Osés (b. 1938), m. Blanca Follmer. They have one son, two daughters, and four grandchildren.


Jaime Osés (b. 1940), m. Martita von Bischhoffshausen. They have three sons, two daughters, and three grandchildren.


bullet Giuseppe Michele Antonio Cavaletto (b. 9/8/1842, d. 11/14/1916 ) m. 5/14/1864 m. 5/14/1864 Laura Cavalletto (b. 9/5/1845, d. 12/20/34, at Rivarolo, TO, IT) the daughter of Joannes Lodovico Cavalletto and his wife Maddalena Canavotto. (Editor’s Note: The father of Maddalena Canavotto was Bartolomeo Canavotto. The father of Maria Canavotto was also Bartolomeo Canavotto. Apparently both girls were born in the 1820s. This appears to be a connecting link between the Spring Valley Cavaletto family and the Santa Barbara Caval(l)etto family. Maria was the mother of Giovanni Battista Cavaletto (b. December 24, 1842, d. April 20, 1930). This would make Giovanni Battista Cavaletto a first cousin of Laura Cavalletto. This explains the oral tradition that cousins of the Spring Valley Cavalettos settled in Santa Barbara. The proof of this proposition should lie in the baptismal records.)

bullet Eugenia Cavaletto (b. 10/26/1866, d. 7/26/1926) m. Dominic Perello (b.  1862, d. 11/16/1921)

bullet Bartolomeo (Bert) Perello (b. 1/5/1891, d. 1/26/1962)
bullet Giovanni Lodovico Cavaletto (b. 3/31/1868, d. 1/27/1954) m. Caterina Micono (b. 5/17/1869, d. 5/14/1947 or d. 3/14/1920)

bullet Giuseppe Cavaletto (b. 1892)
bullet Giacomo Cavaletto (b. 5/9/1894, d. 3/15/1949)
bullet Laurina Cavaletto (b. 2/11/1899, d. 2/9/1937)
bullet Michele [Mike] Cavaletto (b. 2/28/1870 at Vesignano, d. 10/25/1921 at Vesignano) m. 11/4/1896 Caterina Cavaletto (b. 11/19/1873, d. 10/23/1950). Both interred at Calvary Cemetery, Santa Barbara, CA.

bullet Laura Cavaletto (b. 8/29/1897, d. 4/17/1970) m. Borgaro
bullet Frances E. Cavaletto (b. 8/23/1898, d. 3/23/1956) m. Borio
bullet Joseph Cavaletto (9/7/1899, d. 3/16/1900)
bullet Margherita Cavaletto (b. 2/7/1901, d. 6/7/1901)
bullet Joseph Louis Cavaletto (b. 5/15/1902, d. 7/11/1973) m. 4/18/1934 at Solvang, CA, Elvira Giorgi (b. 9/3/1902 at Nojoqui, Santa Barbara, CA, d. 5/22/1994) daughter of Natale Faustino Sr. Giorgi and Elisa Casserini

bullet Michael J. Cavaletto (b. 9/4/1935) m. 7/18/1959 Mary Louise Valenzano (b. 8/16/1936)

bullet Lisa M. Cavaletto (b. 4/18/1961) m. 7/18/1987 Gordon Thygeson (b. 2/2/1962)

bullet Diana C. Thygeson (b. 4/5/1992)
bullet Sam M. Thygeson (10/22/1996)
bullet Laurie M. Cavaletto (b. 4/6/1964) m. 10/5/1991 John Mark Moore (b. 2/6/1962)

bullet Jack M. Moore (4/15/1995)
bullet Janeen E. Moore (4/1/1998)
bullet Jenna M. Moore (b. 10/1/2000)
bullet Catherine G. Cavaletto (2/12/1938)
bullet Cecilia E. Cavaletto (b. 8/3/1940) m. 6/27/1970 Robert E. Villines (b. 10/25/1933, d. 8/12/1998) 

bullet Jennifer M. Villines (b. 5/9/1971) m. 9/12/1998 Samuel McCue
bullet Carrie J. Villines (b. 8/10/1973)
bullet Peter B. Cavaletto (b. 8/22/1904, d. 4/26/1990)
bullet Louisa D. Cavaletto (b. 1/17/1907) m. Marchiando
bullet Lodovicco M. Cavaletto (b. 2/28/1909, d. 1/20/1959)
bullet Francesca Cavaletto (b. 12/5/1873 at Rivarolo, d. 10/17/1962 at Rivarolo) m. Michele Perona (b.  1/5/1868, d. 6/29/1935). He was a son of Giacomo Perona and Maria Cavalletto (d. 12/19/1917 at Rivarolo).

bullet Maria Perona (b.  1/13/1895, d. 1/6/1977) m. Lodovico Germano (b. January 25, 1891; d. February 1976).

bullet Frances Germano m. Raffetto.
bullet Giacomo [James] Joseph Perona (b.  2/20/1896 at Rivarolo, d. 1/29/1956 at Santa Barbara, CA) m. 1929, at Rivarolo, Margherita Baudino (d. 1976 in Turlock, CA). James was a gardener for large estates in Santa Barbara. He emigrated to the US in the 1920s. He went to Santa Barbara to work for a Cavaletto uncle who served as his sponsor from Italy. Re returned to Italy to marry and brought his bride to Santa Barbara. Two babies died young.

bullet Michael J. Perona (b. 1942) m. Beth Warner. Mike is a professor of chemistry at California State University at Stanislaus. (e-mail).
bullet Laura Perona (b. 1/20/1901, d. 2/12/1916)
bullet Teresa Perona (b. 4/05/1903, d. 6/18/1986)
bullet Catterina [Catherine] Perona (b. 10/11/1906, d. 9/25/1993)
bullet Giovanni Battista [G.B.] Cavalletto (b. 11/22/1875, d. 6/29/1955) m. 1/1/1903 Catharina Pagliotti. Also married Madalena Bernasconi which ended in divorce.

bullet Laura A. Cavalletto (b. 7/3/1904, d. 12/18/1968)
bullet Joseph Cavalletto (d. ?/?/1905)
bullet Louis D. Cavalletto (b. 9/23/1906, d. 6/25/1985) 
bullet George A. Cavalletto (b. 1/14/1913, d. 6/25/2000). See Letter of March 14, 1944, from Geo. A. Cavalletto, a retired attorney, providing family history details.
bullet Margherita Cavaletto (b. 7/3/1880, d. 9/28/1975) m. 12/22/1900 Giuseppe G. M. Scavarda (b. 11/25/1976, d. 11/29/1953).

bullet Katherine Scavarda (b. 7/4/1903, d. 3/26/1985)
bullet Laura M. Scavarda (b. 3/22/1907, d. 10/14/1992)
bullet Domenic Scavarda (b. 1/20/1914, d. 5/20/1930)
bullet Giovanni Cavaletto (b. 6/24/1886, d. 10/07/1955) m. Angiolina [Angelina] Pagliotti (b. 8/17/1892, d. 5/2/1955).

bullet Laura Cavaletto  
bullet Giuseppe Cavaletto (b. 11/18/1920, d. 2/12/1991)
bullet Domenica Cavaletto (b. 12/31/1916, d. 1/28/1996)

The editors thank Joseph Lewis Cavaletto, George A. Cavaletto, Catharine G. Cavaletto, Silvia Kay (Cavaletto) Herman, and James A. (Jay) Verett for their contributions to this chapter in Cavaletto history and genealogy.


1994 Letter from George A. Cavalletto to Illinois Cousins

This letter was posted to the web in 2003 by another branch of the family.

March 14, 1994

Dear Mrs. Silkwood (Silvia..Cousin)

You wrote me (and others in the California Cavalletto/Cavaletto family in late November of last year (very soon after our greater family BBQ gathering celebrating the 100th anniversary of Giovanni Battista, known as “G.B.,” and Michele coming to the U.S. I enclose a photocopy of a local news report of that occasion.) I believe (and shall assume) you’ve received our family-tree information from others.

But, as the only survivor of the first generation descendants of G.B. & Michele (I’m 81+), and as three-time visitor to Northern Italy (a 5 month visit in 1920 with my paternal grandmother, Laura, in Vesignano, a suburb of Rivarolo, during which I attended elementary school, served as an altar boy in the small Catholic church there, and had my 7th birthday; 52 years later when I visited the 4 remaining 1st cousins, all of whom I fear are now deceased; and on a tour in 1990), I’ll try to add a little oral family history that may wet your curiosity and help in your research.

I’ve also visited Venice 3 times as an adult, and I’ve learned that the Cavaletto family was well known and very active in business and financial affairs in the 13th, 14th, 15th and 16th centuries. (They supposedly even produced at least 3 Cardinals during that time.) I’ve come to the informed opinion hat two Cavaletto brothers, a retired army colonel and a retired civil engineer, came from Venice to Rivarolo in the 1700’s and laid out and founded the suburb town of Vesignano. One of the next generation gave the town its church, with a special set of pews for the family; it was in excellent condition when I last saw it in 1972; there were 42 families then living in Vesignano, one half of whom were Cavalletto/Cavaletto’s.

Giuseppe & Laura Cavalletto (or Cavaletto) were the (my grandparents) parents of G.B. and Michele. They had 4 sons and 3 daughters who grew to adulthood. Besides G.B. and Michele (who became permanent residents and citizens of the U.S.A.), these were John (who came to this area, stayed & farmed for 15 years, had 33 children here, then returned to Vesignano with his family for the balance of his life, Lodoviceo (who stayed in Vesignano, and had two children there), and Mrs.’s Scavara, Perona & Perello (who all came to the U.S. and spent the rest of their lives here). Both Giuseppe and Laura were Cavalletto/Cavaletto’s; both came from “large” families; they were distant cousins. I know two brothers of my grandparents; one, Avenino, came to Santa Barbara in 1884 and was “responsible” for G.B. & Michele coming here (he housed them, and found them their 1st jobs). The other was in Italy & was 80 yrs. old when I visited my grandmother. My guess is that your grandfather, John, was the son of one of my grandparent’s siblings…making us “3rd cousins, once removed.”

I also enclose a copy of the announcement of the Piedmontese party we attended with my nice and numerous cousins, of varying degrees, last Saturday. There were about 300 there. Two of my cousins (one is Catherine…from whom I think you received info.) are going to be in Rivarolo, Vesignano & Venice in two weeks or so; they plan to do some historical family research.

A little bit of info. about the Piedmont area. It was an independent province forming the northwest part of what has become a unified Italy in the 1870’s. It was a monarchy ruled by Umberto I, and he became Italy’s king (courtesy of his general Garibaldi). The King Umberto I issued the permission to emigrate from Italy in Oct., 1892 to G.B. & Michele; they arrived in Santa Barbara in mid-November, 1892. The Piedmontese dialect, which I spoke as a youngster, is closer to French than the classic Italian. It took me some college courses and a lot of study to learn the classic Italian. I learned to speak and read French in the le weeks during World War II.

I also recorded the oral history of my father, his family and myself some 8 or 9 months ago for the oral history section of the Santa Barbara Historical Society. And my talk giving the oral history of the family at the Cavaletto/Cavaletto reunion was video-taped. If you visit this area, you can listen to all this. And, let me add that my wife and I will be glad to meet you and have visit us (if I’m still around).

please, tell me about your family. I know where Gillespie, Ill. is..30 miles No. of West St. Louis…apparently, a arming area. Has the family been…and is it now…primarily in farming? Are your family members still mostly in the area? Are they all close friends? I’ll be pleased to hear. I’ll also be glad to receive a copy of the photo your letter mentions, even thought I doubt I can do more than speculate of the identities.

In the meantime, I send my affectionate greetings.

George Cavalletto

Jane LaMonte, 1935 High School Yearbook

This copy of Jane LaMonte’s yearbook photo from her senior year 1935 was passed down within the family:


A copy of the yearbook belonging to another classmate from that year has been scanned and posted online.


(Source: Kerry’s Class Pictures & Yearbooks, at

Jane’s entry reads:

Jane LaMonte
Live Oak, California
Activities: Tennis, 2; Re-entered from Live Oak High School, Live Oak, 4; Clio Club, 4; Student Legislature, 4; Forge staff, 4.
Outlook: Law

Biographical Details Recorded By Olive Violet

After receiving an April 4, 1934 letter from her southern cousin requesting biographical details, Olive Violet began to draft her response, using the back of the letter to record the names and birth dates of the members of her household, as well as those of her sisters and first cousin.

Two other slips of paper with the same information accompanied this list, folded up in an envelope from a local hotel. The letter was passed down to her daughter Jane, and then to her grandson George Jr.

Reverse Of Letter To Olive Violet, 1934

 Olive Violet's Lists, Page A  Olive Violet's Lists, Page B

Envelope Front  Envelope Back

Handwritten Reverse Side Of Letter

Live at Live Oak, California
Married Nov. 7, 1915
Russell G. Beale  Sept 2, 1894
Esther M. Beale  March 7, 1897
June M. Beale   April 16, 1917
Ferne M. Beale  April 11, 1919

Loyal Cassidy Lipton  March 25, 1896
Alma J. Lipton     April 30, 1900
Ruth H. Lipton   Jan. 3, 1919
Alma G. Lipton   Aug 30, 1921
Married March 13, 1917
Live Oak, Calif.

Mrs Jessie Vera Henry Abraham
Sept 1901     Married Oct 24 1920
Perry Orvil Abraham   Oct 25 1895
Ellen Jessie Abraham  Aug 10 1922
Patricia Abraham  July 2, 1930

Olive Violet Henry La Monte  Oct 27 1895
Herbert La Monte   Jan 16 1889
Children Harry Earnest La Monte  May 12 1916
Jane La Monte  Oct. 9 1917
Married April 3 1915

List A

Mrs Laura Jane (Luther) Henry
Jan. 16, 1872 birth
Nov. 22, 1894 marriage
Jan  14, 1917 Death

Mrs Olive Violet (Henry) LaMonte
Oct 27, 1895 Birth
April 3 1915 mar.
Husband Herbert LaMonte
Jan 16, 1889 Birth
April 3, 1913 mar.
Children Harry Earnest La Monte
May 12, 1915
Jane La Monte
Oct 9, 1917

List B

Mrs Jessie Vera (Henry) Abraham
Sept 10, 1901 Birth
Oct 23, 1920 Mar.
Perry Orvil Abraham
Oct 25, 1894 Birth
Oct 23, 1920 Mar.
Girls: Ellen Jessie Abraham
Aug 10, 1922
Patricia Jane Abraham
July 2, 1930

Those biographical details are presented in a family tree format below:



1934 Letter from Marian Henry Ransom

This letter was written in 1934 by Marian (Henry) Ransom to her cousin Olive Violet (Henry) LaMonte.

We don’t know much about Marian, but web searches suggest she was born in Georgia in 1895, married Rowland Wyatt Ransom, and died in 1968 and is buried in Summerville, GA.

Olive Violet recorded some biographical details of her own family on the back of the letter.

The letter was passed down to her daughter Jane, and then to her grandson George Jr.

Letter from Marian Henry Ransom


Tate, Ga.
April, 4, 1934.

Mrs.Harry La Monte,
230 West Pedregosa St.,
Santa Barbara,

Dear Mrs.La Monte:-

By rights, I should have started this off with “Dear Cousin”, since we are both descendants of James Henry and Margaret (Allison) Henry. Your aunt Emma Henry, gave me your address, as I had written her for dates etc., which I wanted for a genealogical sketch our people, […] I am trying to arrange. She gave me your Father’s dates and […] your Mother, but could go not further, so if you will send all the others I certainly will appreciate it and include the following:

Full name, birth date, marriage date, death date and present address
of —– Your Mother, (Have your Father’s)
Your self, sisters, your husband, your brothers-in-law and
your children and sisters’ children.

Do hope that this will not be much trouble and that I shall have the pleasure of knowing you sometimes, I am

Most Sincerely
Marian Henry Ransom
(Mrs. R.W. Ransom)

Cavalletto Families in the 1910 Census of Santa Barbara County

Copies of these hand-written notes on the 1910 census records of Santa Barbara County were forwarded by Mary Lou to George Jr. in 2006 along with some other family history materials.

Notes On the 1910 Census


S.B. County
1910 Census

Arroyo B[????] Road
Cavalletto, Lodovico 30 farmer (COTO)
Caterine 24
Aventino 5
Ernest 3

Cavalletto, G.B. 34 Married 7 hrs Came here in 1891
Catherine 26 no citizenship
Laura 5
Luigi 3
[brother to Margherita Scavarda]

La Pal[??] Ave.
Cavaletto, Frank 38 no citizenship farm laborer works out
Frances 26

San Marcos Road
Cavalletto, Mike 30 Came here 1903 married 4 yrs
Clara 28 no citizenship
Luisa 2 1/2
Ferdinand 1 1/2

Cavaletto, M. 40 1891 came here farmer no citizenship
Caterina 37 1897 came here 13 yrs married
Frances 11
Joe 7
Pete 5
Lousisa 3
Lodovico 1
Laura 12
[Michele – brother to Margherita Scavarda]

The Luther Family, Circa 1905

In this picture we see Hezekiah Luther, surrounded by his wife and six children:

The Luthers

Standing: Ann (Luther) Young, William Luther, Everett Luther, Jennie (Luther) Henry, J. Francis Luther.
Seated: May (Luther) Pierce, Hezekiah Luther, Laura Jane Luther

The photo is undated, but was probably taken some time in the years after 1900.

We know that his daughter Jennie, standing second from the right, was born in 1872, while in this picture she looks like she might be in her 30s, by which point she would have already married Cicero Patrick Henry and given birth to her four daughters.


The Henry Family, Circa 1900

This photograph shows the Henry family, including Cicero Patrick Henry, front left.

The Henry Family, Circa 1900

Seated from left: Cicero Patrick Henry, his step mother, and his father

The photo is undated, but we think Cicero was born in the 1860s, and he appears to be in his 30s or 40s in this picture, suggesting the photo was taken around 1900.