The Quilietti Family

The story of a Scots Italian family

BRATTESANI, Giovanni Batista 1890 – Zaccarini line

I have dedicated this page in honour of  Giovanni Batista Brattesani  and his descendants..  Giovanni was a nephew of our direct ancestor Giuseppi Brattesani.

Giovanni or John Brattesani

Some of the  information was forwarded by James Penn Dunnett who is John Brattesani’s nephew.  Thanking James for his information.   Thanking Rosemary Lean also for added information regarding Giuseppe and Veronica and their children.  Rosemary has forwarded the photographs and documentation appertaining to her ancestors.    James and Rosemary are second cousins.


Giuseppe Brattesani was born in Borgo Val di Taro in Parma  on 25th August 1831.  He was the son of Giuseppe Brattesani and Annunziate Bosi.

Giuseppe married Veronica Zaccarini

who was 19 years his junior.   Her date of birth was 22nd April 1851.   They  were married on 6th January 1873 in the Church in the village..  Giuseppe was a Wine /Spirit Merchant by trade.

Giuseppe and Veronica wedding 6 Jan 1873

The couple had at least ten children and we know of three  who emigrated to Scotland.    Luigi and Giovanni  were the  names of  two of the children who made their home here.    But there was also a Brattesani  sister who was resident up North with  whom  Giovanni lived with  when he arrived in Scotland, age 10.

The 1901 Scottish census shows Giuseppe Brattesani  in Scotland visiting  Antonio Brattesani who had an ice cream shop in the High Street, in Leslie in Fife.   Antonio was born in 1846 in Italy.   Antonio’s son Lodovico was also registered at this address age 16 and born in Italy    We can calculate from the ages that Antonio and Giuseppe would more than likely have been brothers.  The family travelled to and fro Italy frequently and visits back home to Italy to escape harsh Scottish winters were not uncommon for the new Italian immigrants who were making a good living with their restaurants and confectionery businesses.Luigi Brattesani, eldest son,

Giovanni Batista Brattesani,  son  of Giuseppe and Veronica Zaccarini

The grave of Veronica Zaccarini 1850-1915 in Borgo Val di Tora. The Bettina Brattesani 1871-1959 was a daughter.  She emigrated to Scotland and at first went to live with his sister [name unknown]  and her husband in the north of Scotland.  His parents sent him over to Scotland at the tender age of 10, no mean feat for a boy who would not have spoken English, let alone Scots.    For how many years he lived with her I do not know, but we know that he eventually had businesses in Fife, Edinburgh and South Queensferry.

Luigi Brattesani, eldest son, also came to Scotland settling in Glasgow.   Born circa 1875 we first track him down in 1901 at the time of the census living in  Ladybank, Collessie in Fife working with Ernesto Costello.  The occupation given was ice-cream Merchant.  He later  married Emily Gorman and they moved to Glasgow where they continued in the  confectionery business in the City.  They lived in Cecil Street, Hillhead in Glasgow.  He sadly  died on February 23rd 1923 at the tender age of 46 years of heart failure.

Giovanni was ten years younger than Luigi, his birthdate documented as 1890 in Borgotora.  There is  also documented in the Edinburgh archives Giovanni Brattesani having a shop in 88 Brunswick Street in Edinburgh in the year 1915.  But there was also John with a house and shop at 4 Church Street, Auchterderran.

  • Giovanni settled well in Scotland and  had married   girl called  Emma Jane Arthur in Edinburgh in 1913.    Emma was living in  Liverpool at the time of their marriage but was in fact born in Scotland.   We believe Emma came from Ballingry in Fife where her father worked in the coal mines.  In 1913  at the time of the wedding Giovanni was residing in Dundee.   They had three daughters.
  • Veronica Agnes  Brattesani who was born on 1st February  1914 in Durie Street, Methil in Fife.
  • Elizabeth Emma came next and she was born in 1916 in Black  Road, Kelty in Fife.   Her parents were residing at 4 Church Street, Lochgelly at this time.   Elizabeth became a hairdresser  fell in love with  a medical student called John Malgarvie .  He was an American/Italian who was studying in Edinburgh.    Although the couple never married Elizabeth became pregnant.  Sadly  Elizabeth  died after complications of a twin  childbirth on 16th May 1937.    The twin babies, Robert Henry John Malgeri died 1 June 1937 at 5.30 am and Elizabeth Margaret Malgeri died on 3 June 1937 at 7.30 am.
  • Eugenia was born in 4 Church Street, Lochgelly in Fife on 28th May  1917.  On 25th July 1941 she married Alexander Kingsepp who was a marine engineer  in Blythswood Registrars Office in Glasgow.   Alex. was divorced.   I understood that Alexander Kingsepp was a merchant seaman from Lithuania and was presumed drowned at sea. Eugenia subsequently married a Swedish Merchant Seaman, Stig Lundstrom and moved to Sweden. .  Aunt Jean’s marriage to Stig Lennard Lundstrom took place on 23 August 1943.  Stig Lundstrom was a Ship’s Cook in the Swedish Merchant Navy.  Her first child, Stephanie (born 31 July 1942) was born in St Austell, Cornwall and Lesley was born on 8 August 1949 in Sweden and son, Ragnar born about 5 years later (exact date to be established) in Sweden. All children are living in/near Goteborg, Sweden.

Giovanni and Emma divorced on 11th Novembr 1919.   Perhaps it was the war years that was the demise of their marriage, especially if  Giovanni had returned to Italy to  play his part in his native country’s war.

Giovanni had followed his cousins into the confectionery and fish restaurant businesses.  He perhaps had more than one shop, and as we can see from the Sasines Registers 1915-1916 that year there were many Brattesani shops in Scotland  at that time.

  • IN EDINBURGH  Sante Brattesani,  residing at 9 Greenside Place
  • IN EDINBURGH, Peter Brattesani residing at 30 Greenside Row
  • IN EDINBURGH, Giovanni, a shop at 88 Brunswick Street

This Brattesani shop looks just like the top of my street in Edinburgh [author Helen]
Attilio Brattesani shop with American Banner in John Street, Montrose
  • IN EDINBURGH, Joseph, a Shop at 3 Church Street, Edinburgh
  • IN EDINBURGH Sante, a shop at 3 Greenside Place
  • IN EDINBURGH, Sante, a shop at 4 Greenside Place [refreshment room keeper double shop]
  • IN EDINBURGH, Agnes house at 6 Deanhaugh Street,
  • IN EDINBURGH, Sante a shop at 8 Union Place
  • IN EDINBURGH, Sante a shop at 11 Union Place
  • IN MONTROSE, James, 101 Murray Street, Restaurant
  • IN MONTROSE James, 2 St. John’s Place, house
  • IN INVERESK , Lorenzo, a shop at 32 Bride Street,
  • IN AUCHTERDERRAN, John, a house and shop at 4 Church Street – THIS IS OUR GIOVANNI BATISTA

  • IN COWDENBEATH, Celeste, a shop at 142 High Street, Cowdenbeath
  • IN MONTROSE, James, 101 Murray Street.
  • These Brattesani boys were all cousins, brothers and uncles and they were doing very well for themselves at this time in Scots/Italian history.

    By the year 1920 the Scottish Archives tell us that there was a  John Brattesani who  had a shop at 44 Earl Street, Edinburgh and a  Giovanni  Brattesani with premises at 42 Shore Street, Anstruther.    These two shops may have both been run by the same Giovanni.

    After the divorce from Emma John remarried and his  new wife was Elizabeth Stevens Dunnet.   Elizabeth was 22 years his junior when they married in Chambers Street in Edinburgh on 10th November 1934.   Elisabeth’s father wasa Salmon fisher by trade.   Their marriage was fruitful and their two sons came along a few years later,

    James Giuseppe Laurence who was born in 1 West Clarement Street, Edinburgh  in 1936 .   He called himself Lawrence Bradley on the day he married Helen Seaton Purves .     Then there was John who was born in 1934.   The family changed their name to Bradley in the year 1939.

    Below is the story of John and Elizabeth, and their descendants, very kindly sent through to me by James Penn Dunnett who is the nephew of Elizabeth.   see below

    Giovanni Batista Brattesani married my dads sister Elizabeth Dunnett in Edinburgh in 1934 and about 1935 he changed his name to John Bradley.

    They had two children, John and Lawrence, who went to Melville College in Edinburgh (now called Stewarts Melville College).

    John Brattesani with his son John and their housekeeper

    My aunt died at the very young age of 32 from TB on 20th September 1946 in Robroyston Hospital, Glasgow. John Bradley and Elizabeth Dunnett are buried in South Queensferry Cemetery.

    My dad, David Dunnett, had a business relationship with John Brattesani for about ten years and looked after Bradley’s Hotel in South Queensferry for a couple of years after the war. Uncle John taught him how to make ice cream and my dad built the Garvie Cafe in the grounds of Bradley’s Hotel round about 1949. I spent the first eight years of my childhood in Bradleys Hotel and the adjoining coachhouse, Newhalls Cottage.

    Uncle John had some friends in high places and this helped when in June 1940 he was interned in Saughton Prison. The prison records say he was moved to York but he was released soon after with the help of his friend Detective Superintendent William Merrilees, head of the Edinburgh Police CID (later to become chief constable).

    H.M.S. Lochinvar

    For the rest of the war uncle John spent most of his time in Glasgow where he had a couple of ice cream cafes, (Shawlands Cross and Argyll Street). After my aunt died he continued to live at 48 St Vincent Crescent, Kelvingrove, Glasgow

    Lauriston Place Fire Station, Edinburgh

    My dad told me that uncle John was a sergeant in the Italian army in WW1 but I have been unable to find out anything as Italian military records are held in the state archive of the comune (Borgo Val di Taro) in which a person was born.

    ROSEMARY LEAN has given me the following information and hopefully the names of the other children will follow on.

    My grandfather was Giovanni Batista Brattesani and he was sent by his parents from Borgo Val de Taro at the turn of the 20th century. He was 10 years old. He first stayed with his sister and husband in the north of Scotland (Helensburgh way) but later was in business in Edinburgh and South Queensferry and later in Glasgow.

    I lived in Edinburgh in the 1960s and knew of Joe Brattesani and the fish and chip shops in fact, I lived in Brougham Place!

    I have done some research into my Grandfather’s family in Borgotaro and have tracked down some of the family but cannot find out the exact relationship to my Grandfather. He was one of 10 children.

    I am in touch with the son of Luisa Tagliavini (nee Brattesani) but am unable to confirm the connection (if any) with my Grandfather.

    I would be interested to further extend any connection there might be.

    I have the names of the 10 children of Veronica Zaccarini and Guiseppe Brattesani and Luigi being the eldest son. Grandad was the youngest of the 10 children.

    I am trying to establish the parents of Attilio Brattesani

    Attilio outside his shop but where was this shop?
    Attilio Brattesani

    who was  born1898 in Borgo Val di Taro  and who also came  to Scotland and died in 1950 in Dundee.


    Can you shed any light on the names of his parents?

    Best wishes


    I am now inserting a comment from Pete Cura.  You can read the contents yourself.   I think Pete may also be connected to this branch of the Brattesani family but I am still trying to establish this

    Thanks for this, its’ absolutley fascinating.
    I have a hunch that the ‘John’ or Giovanni mentioned in the third paragraph may have been my Great Grandfather but according to my father he may have been born in America, (as was my maternal Grandfather Attilio Dellanzo who’s family hailed from Rovinaglia),and did visit his brother there at a later date.
    However,I am told he had several children for whom he set up businesses around Scotland. The eldest being my Grandmother Adelena who married my Grandfather Giovanni Cura and settled in Cupar,Fife. The youngest Jimmy and Ena ran Brattisani’s Ice cream and Chip shop in Anstruther,Fife
    It seems he left a brother and sister in each as Dave and Mary ran a shop and billiard room in Edzell and I didn’t realise I had an Uncle Peter and aunt Carolina in Crail until the former passed away. The only one I think is still alive is Jean. There may have been more.
    They were all first cousins with Louisa Tagliavino who I always visit when on Hallowed Ground. I think I’ve only met her son Luigi on one occasion.
    My mother’s Maternal and Father’s Paternal liniage are from Buzzo over the valley near Gotra and Albareto.. But that’s another story altogether.

    It’s been great teaming up with you all.
    Hope to speak again soon.
    All the best. Pete

    7 Responses to “BRATTESANI, Giovanni Batista 1890 – Zaccarini line”

    1. Rosemary Lean says:

      I have been checking the various records I have relative to the above information and hope to clarify some of the inaccuracies as follows:-

      The first son of Giovanni Batiste and Elizabeth Dunnett was named Giovanni Batiste (John) and he was born sometime in 1934. The second son was named James Guiseppe Laurence (Larry) and he was born in 1936. John did not marry. Larry married Helen Purvis.

      Reference Grandad’s marriage to Emma Jane Arthur, dated 2 April 1913, Grandad’s address: Browning Hotel, Crichton Street,Dundee and Granny’s 18 St John’s Lane, Liverpool. This address puzzles me as my Grandmother was Scottish and born in Fife . . .. I will need to get a copy of her birth certificate I think.

      Elizabeth Emma (Veronica Agnes’ sister) fell in love with John Malgeri (American Italian studying in Edinburgh). She died on 16 May 1937. Both twins died. Robert Henry John Malgeri died 1 June 1937 at 5.30 am and Elizabeth Margaret Malgeri died on 3 June 1937 at 7.30 am.

      I understood that Alexander Kingsepp was a merchant seaman from Lithuania and was presumed drowned at sea. Eugenia subsequently married a Swedish Merchant Seaman, Stig Lundstrom and moved to Sweden. Her first child, Stephanie (born 31 July 1942) was born in St Austell, Cornwall and Lesley was born on 8 August 1949 in Sweden and son, Ragnar born about 5 years later (exact date to be established) in Sweden. All children are living in/near Goteborg, Sweden.

      One question for anyone with the knowledge: As Giovanni Batista presumably travelled by sea to the UK. Which port would he have arrived at?

      I will (in due course . . . when I recover from this episode) get in touch with Larry’s son Stuart who lives in Edinburgh and inform him of this website and all the information available online.

      I am intrigued by the comment that there is a gentleman named Pete who is my cousin . . . where does he come in to the picture?

      Is it possible to actually get in touch with James Penn-Dunnett and Pete or is this purely an exercise on paper?

      I look forward to more information as and when it becomes available.

      Kind regards to all concerned


    2. Luigi Tagliavini says:

      Antonia Brattesani era il padre di Attilio Brattesani padre di Luisa Brattesani Tagliavini.
      Io sono Luigi Tagliavini figlio di Luisa Brattesani

    3. Helen says:

      I am trying to compile your family tree from the information you supply. Please e.mail me on

    4. Moira Fotheringham says:

      The photo of the shop under the photo of Attilio Brattesani was in John Street Montrose

    5. Duncan Sutherland says:

      The photo with the caption “Giuseppe outside his shop” apparently shows Attilio in 1890. The shop pictured here is the Brattesani establishment in Shore Street, Anstruther, in the East Neuk of Fife. The house and shop to the right of it was constructed in 1880.

    6. Helen says:

      Thanks so much for correcting this for me. I rely on family information and had probably a mix up in admin.

    7. Martyn John McCarthy says:

      Hiya, I’ve just seen this page as part of an internet search. About 40 odd years ago (circa 1986?) I was stationed with a friend in Montrose briefly whilst doing my Offshore survival training. Whilst we were there, we happened to come across a shop selling tobacco & confectionary, ran by a delightful old gentleman. We got chatting to the gentleman & he invited us into the side room of the shop where he had a full size snooker table set up. We were astounded as we had never seen anything like this before….& we spent a few happy hours in there playing snooker. Alas we were only there for a couple of days but the memory remains to this day. I’ve been informed that the shop may have been run by John Brattesani & it was possibly in the area of John street or New Wynd but not sure. Any information you might have would be most welcome. Thank you, Martyn McCarthy xx

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