Fracesco Sinatra
Date of Birth 1857 - Lercara Friddi, Sicily[1]
Date of Death 1946 (Aged 91)
Gender Male
Nationality Sicilian
Relatives Wife: Rosa Sinatra
Children: 5 sons, 2 daughters
Grandson: Frank Sinatra

Francesco Sinatra was Frank Sinatra's grandfather, and was born in Scilly.


Francesco grew up in Lercara Friddi, and as uneducated, so could not read or write. He went into the shoemaking industry. When in his early twenties, he married Rosa, a woman of the same age. By the age of thirty, they had two sons. At the age of 32, in 1889, the Sinatra's moved to the suburbs of Palermo, where the couple had two more sons who died during their infancy, possibly due to the 1890's cholera epidemic that struck the Palermo suburbs. [1]

Francesco was one of the 1.5 million Sicilians who left Sicily in twenty-five years, leaving for America in the summer of 1890, leaving behind Rosa and his five children. He went on a ship to Naples, then boarded the British Spartan Prince, which took him to New York. He arrived at Ellis Island on July 6, and told immigration he planned to stay with a relative who resided on Old Broadway, Manhattan. He had entered with only $30. Francesco couldn't be a shoe maker in New York, as there were too many in the city. Francesco had a job as a boilermaker and afterwards worked at the American Pencil Company, earning just $11 ($200 today) a week. Throughout he sent money back to Rosa in Sicily. His sons Isidor and Salvatore, aged fifteen, joined him in 1902, with Rosa and their remaining children - Antonio, nine, Angelina and Dorotea followed suite at Christmas. Francesco suffered at the pencil company for the 17 years he worked there, inhaling dust, and couldn't get another job due to only speaking Italian.[1][2]

Mafia Connections Edit

Sicily was run by the Mafia throughout Francesco's life there. The grandfather of Frank Sinatra lived at a time when civil authority fell and the Mafia rose into power. Living in the the town of Lercara Friddi. Located in the core of Mafia territory, and home to some of the countries biggest sulphur mines, as well as being close to Corleone and Prizzi - too well known Mafia towns. But Francesco's home town was home to Lucky Luciano, the most notorious Italian-American gangster.[1]

Luciano's parents and Sinatra were married at the same search within two years of each other, and Luciano was baptised in the same font as Francesco's first two children, and the likely hood was that the two families were familiar with each other, seeming they both lived on Via Mrgherita di Savoia street, and a relative of Francesco's bride called Saglimbeni was in Luciano's address book.[1]

The Birth and Home Town DisputeEdit

Francesco has been given many year of births and town of birth. His obituary, which appeared in The New York Times, said he was born in Italy in 1884, although his death certificate says 1866.

Frank Sinatra has said his family comes from Catania, in shows in 1964 and 1987, but told one his violoinist - Ann Barak - that they came from Agrigento, which is on the other side of the island to Catania.[1] He later confirmed this again, when he was helping Nancy Sinatra write her book about him. The book said his grandfather was called John, and born and lived in Agrigento throughout his childhood.[1][2]

The true date and location of Francesco's birth was discovered by Anthony Summers and Robbyn Swan, who wrote the book Sinatra: The Life. Using baptismal and marriage records, United States immigration and census date and interviewing his surviving grandchildren, they discovered Francesco Sinatra was born in 1857 in Lercara Friddi, Northwest Sicily, an important town refereed to by some as little Palermo.[1]

Mafia ConnectionsEdit


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 Sinatra: The Life
  2. 2.0 2.1 Frank Sinatra: An American Legend