History of the Teglio Family

Modena, Genova, Polperro

History of the Teglio Family

The Cornish Pilchard Industry

Catching Pilchards

Salting Pilchards

Pressing Pilchards

Packing Pilchards

Exporting Pilchards

The Teglio Family and Polperro

Guglielmo Teglio of Plymouth

Massimo Teglio and the Jews of Genova


The Pilchard Works Newlyn

Polperro Heritage Museum of Smuggling and Fishing

Thorn Gent Family Home Page

I know little about the Teglio family, and apologise for that, but I share what I can.

There are in fact two towns, or communities, in Italy named Teglio. One, in the North east, is known as Teglio Veneto. The other, known as Teglio Lombardia, is to the North west of Milan, not far from the border with Switzerland and St Moritz, close to the town of Sondrio. I can only guess that the family took its name from the latter community. I have so far been unable to trace if either place ever possessed a Jewish community. Many Italian Jews took their surnames from their town of origin.

My great great aunt Elsa Finzi told me that her mother's family came from Modena. This lies to the south east of Milan in Emilia Romagna. Elsa's maternal grandparents were Laudadio and Carolina Teglio. We know that Laudadio's mother was known by the forename Chiarina, but nothing more. We know the names of some of Laudadio's siblings: Elvira; Stella who was born in 1835 and died in 1897, the wife of Giacomo Levi and mother of four children; and Abramino Teglio.

Laudadio and Carolina Teglio

At some time in the 1850s Laudadio must have moved westwards to the great seaport of Genova, like Modena the home of a Jewish community. Laudadio was a member of the last generation to practise Judaism as a living religion, before the great assimilation that followed the Risorgimento. Laudadio was the founder of the salted fish importing business that is possibly still in existence today. He and his wife had thirteen children, Zia Elsa told me in 1964, of whom Emma was the eldest. Laudadio's sons Roberto, Federico and Guglielmo were the most active in the family business, according to the deeds of the factory they purchased in Polperro, Cornwall. Five of the children's names are unknown to me. Guglielmo's I have only just discovered, and his date of death in 1926 in Plymouth, England.

Emma Teglio, Laudadio's eldest daughter, married Constantino Finzi, son of Guglielmo Finzi, of Ferrara. She had two sons, Riccardo Finzi, father of Gianfranco, and Umberto. She also had two daughters, Emilia, who married Silvio Schiff (my great grandparents), and Elsa, the youngest, and the source of most of my information.

Zia Elsa told me of Roberto's sons Massimo and Mario. He also had three daughters: Emma, wife of Bruno DeBenedetti; and Margherita, who died in a concentration camp with her husband Achille Vitale and two children; and Laura, born in 1909, and who died in June, 1993 at Genova.

Zia Elsa did not tell me of Massimo's exploits in the Second World War helping his fellow Jews, though I think she knew of his enthusiasm for aeroplanes: he was a founder of the Genova Aeronautical Club.