The Quilietti Family

The story of a Scots Italian family

BRATTESANI, Celeste 1884

CELESTE BRATTESANI was the son of Angelo Brattesani and Maria Delgrosso.   He was one of at least five children.  

  • Santino was born in 1875.  He married Valentina Quilietti Brattesani and then Louigia Peruzzi.  Sante died in Italy in 1915
  • Clement was born in 1876 in Paris in France where the family Brattesani had settled for a while. [Valentina Quilietti Brattesani was also born in Paris in 1879].  Clement however stayed in Paris and married Josephine Spagnoli.  Their descendants still live in the Region today.
  • Giuseppe was born in 1879 in Edinburgh.   He married Agnes Croan Ferguson.  Their descendants still live in Edinburgh today.  His sons managed the Brattisani chippies in Edinburgh until recently.
  • Angelo – date of birth  still to be confirmed.
There are still unconfirmed ‘siblings’ as there are many Brattesani members we still have to link up to the branches back in Italy.


Celeste, Angelo and Lorenzo Brattesani. The lady we believe is Lorenzo's wife Clarinda Cardinale.    Photograph taken in Montecatini Terme in Tuscany.  1933

Lorenzo Brattesani was the son of Giuseppe Brattesani.  He also emigrated to New York where he established close contact with his cousins from Scotland.  The families remained close and we can see from the photograph above that they travelled back to Italy together.

Lorenzo, son of Giuseppe

He also settled in New York and would have been in very close contact with his uncles and cousins.



Celeste born 1884 arrived in Scotland circa 1907 and went to work with his cousins in the  Brattisani shops which were scattered throughout central Edinburgh and Scotland.

yummy, beautiful fish and chips

Here he learned the trade and discovered that it was very hard work chipping the potatoes and gutting the fish.  Like Morecambe and Wise or Wallace and Gromit, fish and chips are a classic double act – and yet they started life as solo performers.

Who first had the bright idea to marry fish with chips remains the subject of fierce controversy and we will probably never know for sure. It is safe to say it was somewhere in England but arguments rage over whether it was up north or down south.

Italian migrants passing through English towns and cities saw the growing queues and sensed a business opportunity, setting up shops in Scotland, Wales and Ireland.

To keep prices down, portions were often wrapped in old newspaper – a practice that survived as late as the 1980s when it was ruled unsafe for food to come into contact with newspaper ink without grease-proof paper in between.

Celeste met a young Scottish girl whose family lived in Cowdenbeath.  She was Mary Graham Ewan.

Mary Graham Ewan - she was a Scottish beauty

 Her father James was a coalminer in the town. But he had been born in Abbotshall, Fife, where his family had been for a few decades before him working in the industry.

 The Ewan family  lived at Somerville Buildings, Hill Street.  Cowdenbeath is located just 5 miles north-east  of Dunfermline in Fife.  The town grew up from the extensive coalfields and almost all the residents would have had connections in this harsh industry.  

Celeste and Mary marreid in 31 Gayfield Square, Edinburgh on 18th January 1911.  Celeste was 26 and Mary was 19.   After their marriage they moved through to Cowdenbeath where they moved into the High Street of the town.  It was here that their  children were born.  Alice on May 2nd of 1911, Maria Delgrosso on September 24th 1912.   Then came Angelo on July 10th 1915 and Celeste who was born the following year but who died in infancy.

It was possibly here that Celeste had his first business enterprise and the location was most probably 142 High Street in the town. Celeste and their family then moved through to Grangemouth.

  • Alice Brattesani was born in 1911 at 142 High Street, Cowdenbeath in Scotland.  She married William Aitken and they had a daughter Mary.  The family emigrated to New York where she stayed until she died in 1998 in Brooklyn, New York.  Her parents would visit on many occasions and we can track their travel on the great liners of the day including the Queen Mary over the Atlantic Ocean.
  • Maria Delgrosso Brattesani was born in 1912 at the same address in Cowdenbeath.  She also emigrated to New York.  Have not tracked her any further to see if she indeed married or not.  She died in Queen’s County, New York in 1987.
  • Celeste was born in 1914 at the same address.  He died in infancy.
  • Angelo was born in 1915 also at the same address. –   He married Isobel Ritchie Moir.  They had two sons, Celeste and John



Life was good for Celeste and his family.   All his hard work was paying off and they were doing alright.  Angelo was sent to Dollar Academy

Dollar Academy

Dollar Academy  a very prestigious pay-feeing school,  where he was educated to a very high standard.  His education took him back home to Italy studying Italian and Latin.  Celeste I am sure would have been very proud of his son and of own standing.  Celeste lived until he was 87 and died on 12th February 1972 at Falkirk Royal Infirmary.  His death was the result of a car accident where he injured his ribs and the pheumonia set in.  His wife Mary died in 1970 age 79.

Angelo took on the family business as it was as a Restranteur that he was married on 14th August 1939 in Kerse Church in Grangemouth.  His new wife was Isabel Ritchie Moir, the daughter of Alexander Moir  and Mary Jane Walker.

  • They had two sons Celeste and John.
  • John now lives in France  with his partner Frances Currie – John and Frances have kindly given us the information shared on this page about his paternal line.
  • John’s brother Celeste married Mairie Ruth Howie in Linlithgow in 1990.

6 Responses to “BRATTESANI, Celeste 1884”

  1. Gordon Leishman says:

    I was at Grangemouth High School with Les (Celeste) till1961 and would love to hear from him. Gordon Leishman.

  2. Helen says:

    Have posted your comment. Thanks for the response

  3. lesley Carron says:

    would love to contact either “les” or John as we are visiting scotland in march and would love to hear about family in scotland

  4. Bob (Bobby) Buckie says:

    I too was at Grangemouth High with Les and Gordon LeIshman and would also like to contact them

  5. Michael White says:

    Sad to report that Les died on Sunday January 10th 2021 aged 76. No more details at present.

  6. Helen says:

    that’s so sad. Thank you for your update Michael

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