Why did your Italian ancestor have five cousins all named Joe? Why did married women travel under their maiden names? Was Sally really Serafina? This presentation explores the factors that pushed and pulled Italians to emigrate, what they found when they arrived, Italian naming patterns and name changes, and how to start your search. Knowing what their life was like in Italy helps us to understand their choices and behavior when they emigrated: why they were slow to naturalize, why the family was the most important institution, and why food was a source of celebration.