This week's mission:
"1) Determine who your most recent unknown ancestor is - the one that you don't even know his or her name.
2) Summarize what you know about his or her family, including resources that you have searched and the resources you should search but haven't searched yet.
3) Tell us about it in your own blog post, in a comment to this post, or in a status on Facebook."
I've written about them before and indeed, they are my main research focus of 2011. My great-grandmother, (Maria) Nicoletta Riccia(?), seems to have fallen from the sky because her parents, if she had them (I'm beginning to have my doubts!), are a total mystery. I don't have names for either of them, including surnames (though I'm pretty sure Nicoletta's maiden name was Riccia or some variation thereof), dates, or even a location.
I've done genetic testing. Nicoletta is the source of my father's rare mtDNA haplotype, N1a. This makes it interesting to research, but difficult to find genetic matches. I've looked at the microfilms for the village where her husband (and supposedly she) was from and again, no luck. I ordered her death certificate which disappointingly lists her parents as "Unavailable." I've also put in requests for her naturalization file but it doesn't seem to exist.
Luckily, there is one glimmer of hope: Nicoletta had a social security number. And, where there's a number, there's an application (her SS-5 form). I ordered it yesterday, wish me luck.