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Severinus and Guiditta Guscetti
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Portrait of Severinus
Severinus Guscetti had his portrait hung in the Quinto Town Hall, Ticino, Switzerland. He was the town doctor, then a member of Parliament.
Severinus was born 24 June 1816 at Milano, Italy, to Margerita Eusebio and Gio Antonio Guscetti. He married Guiditta Marini de Besana. The coat of arms is preserved on the family home in Ambri, a village across the Levent from Quinto.
Their children born at Quinto are
1. Virgilio Guscetti 16 Jan 1846, who returned to Milan.
2. Sofia Guscetti 21 March 1847 married Carlos Bravo, stayed in Australia, and
3. Federico Guscetti 30 July 1848 married Josephine McPherson, stayed in Australia.
4. Emilio Guiseppe Guscetti was born at Bellinzona 2 Feb 1853 and returned to Milan.
The family migrated to Australia, believed by the Gipsy Bride, arrived on 12 Feb 1855. Three more children were born and died in Australia as infants.
5. Faustus Guscetti died at Fryerstown 1856
6. Faustus Americus Secundus Guscetti born 1857 at Mt Ararat died 1861
7. Charles Margaret Guscetti born at Arnherst 19 Aug 1859 and died the same day.

In 1849 he was chosen as a member of the National Council of the Swiss Federation. In 1851 he became a member of the Government of his Canton and held the offices of Comptroller, minister of Education and member of the Senatory Commission. In 1854 he lost his seat and migrated perhaps to California and then to Victoria.

Severinus took his family first to Hepburn then to Bendigo - The Bendigo Advertiser 16 Dec 1856 carried this notice " S Guscetti MD Adjoining the Switzerland Store near the Camp".

In 1958 the Centenary of Stawell District Hospital was celebrated and a booklet was published. Page 15 lists the officials when the foundation stone was laid 31 Dec 1860. Severinus is the fourth Hon Surgeon.

Severinus was working as Doctor at Tarnagulla in 1861 when he applied for Naturalisation because he wanted to buy some land. He was naturalised on 5 July 1861 - ref numbers S 3357 and R 5258. He said he came to Australia from Liverpool in 1854 on the Gipsy Bride. I have not been able to confirm this detail, and think he worked the passages for the family by being 'Ship's Doctor'. On 3 June 1866 his daughter Sofia married Carlos Bravo, and they settled at Bridgewater, on a vineyard owned by Dr Guscetti.

The Victorian Directory and Gazetteer for 1868, 1869 and 1870, page 474, shows Gueisetti - doctor Daylesford. In 1871 the entry is on page 206.

Daylesford supported a local newspaper called "Daylesford Mercury and Express", which is preserved in Melbourne's State Library.
The Daylesford Express for 1870 has several Thank you notices to Dr Guscetti for his gifts of wine for the comfort of the poor. The last reported gift was on Nov 1, with the comment "We have to thank Dr Guscetti for a present of Colonial Wine which the employees of this office enjoyed".

On 8 Nov 1870 they reported a near fatal accident. Dr Guscetti was driving his buggy with Dr Massey as passenger. As they came down the hill towards Leggat's Bridge the horse started to gallop and Dr Guscetti put on the brake as he felt he was loosing control. The horse entangled his back foot in the splash board, hit the left parapet of the bridge and the buggy capsised. Dr Guscetti was thrown out and got up 'uninjured', Dr Massey was left sitting in the buggy skeleton. The horse disentangled itself and raced across the bridge, eluded capture, and escaped (went home).

Severinus received head injuries in the crash. These were not recognised. On 9th January 1871 Dr Guscetti was admitted to Yarra Bend under warrant, suffering from mania and feebleness. On 4 March he was moved to the bed ridden ward, suffering from swollen legs, congested lungs and feebleness of mind, and he died 20 April 1871. Daylesford gave him a hero's funeral, and the local newspaper had reports spread over several days. Unfortunately the surname has died out in Australia, although there are many descendants here, including my husband, Max Janson.
Go to the Vic Govt site here then select Alphabetical List of Patients at Yarra Bend Assylum - RS 7446 P1 - Unit 1 (Yarra Bend) 26 Oct 1848 - 11 Nov 1912, Page 70,
Gascetti Severinus admitted 1871 Jan 9th, Frederick Gascetti (son) Newbridge, (name on bond - Severinus Guscetti), 25/- a week, 1871 April 20 Died
Sofia Guscetti 21 March 1847 - 13 August 1919, married 3 June 1866 to Carlo Bravo 1835 - 25 Aug 1919, born in Cugnasco Italy, died at Newbridge, Victoria. Sofia gave birth to 11 children between 1867 and 1890. Both parents died of Spanish Flu, soon after the death on 4 July 1919 of their daughter Catherine.
Survivers are
3. Giovanni Domenico Bravo 1870 - 1943, married Anna Camfield, seven sons and two daughters.
4. Augustine Bravo 1871 - 1952, married Frances Keefe, four daughters and one son.
6. Charles Bravo 1872 - 1957, married Emily Garrigan, five sons and two daughters.
11. Catherine Bravo 1889 - 4 July 1919, married Ray Hancock, died in the Spanish Flu epidemic.

Frederic Antonio Guscetti 30 July 1848 - 23 April 1912, married 19 Oct 1871 to Margaret Josephine McPherson 17 Oct 1852 - 28 Jan 1885, born in Aberdeen, Scotland, died at Inglewood, Victoria. Her death is recorded as Margt Cursetti, aged 31, died 1885 #1886, at Inglewood Hospital.
1. Frederic Severinus Guscetti 10 July 1872 - 27 Mar 1960, married Johanna Maloney, one son and one daughter, both died without issue.
2. Olive Sophia Guscetti 20 Mar 1874 - 15 Jan 1905, married George Nelson Hitchcock, five daughters.
3. Frances Mary Rosetta Guscetti 7 Aug 1876 - 7 Aug 1958, wed David John Arnold, seven daughters and two sons.

In 1994, when I completed my Guscetti story, there were eight known 7th generation grandchildren of Severinus and Guidita Guscetti, living in Australia.
The last holder of the Guscetti surname was Olive Sophia Guscetti, who died 30 July 1983.

The Argus (Melbourne, Vic. : 1848 - 1957) Thursday 27 April 1871
The district coroner, Mr. Candler, held an inquest on Friday at the Yarra Bend Lunatic Asylum, on the body of an inmate named Severinus Guscetti, aged 55 years. Deceased was an Italian, but could speak English, and had practised as a medical man at Daylesford. He was admitted on the 9th January last, suffering from mania. He had disease of the lungs, and sank very rapidly till Thursday, the 20th inst., when he died in the morning.
A post-mortem examination by Mr FTW Ford, surgeon, showed that death had been caused by disease of the lungs and brain, and a verdict was returned accordingly.

Elizabeth Janson's web contributions
began 1st Nov, 1998.
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