Made Two Fortunes Lost First While Silk Broker in Italy--Friend of Composer Puccini
Louis Buonini, the most prominent member of the Italian race in Freeport, died last night at 9 o'clock after an illness of ten days. He has not, however, been in good health for some time. His death was caused by ulceration of the stomach. Mr. Buonini had an unusually active career, and after losing one fortune in his native country, he gained another in the land of his adoption. He was born in Lucca, near Florence, in Tuscany, on Dec. 11, 1852. He attended lyceum and a technical school and graduated with a degree in civil engineering. He latre (sic) became assistant cashier of a bank in his native city and was finally made cashier. Later he went into the brokerage business, dealing in raw silks. By an extreme fall in the silk market, he lost his fortune and in 1887 came to this country, making his home in Chicago, where he secured a position as draughtsman with the McCormick Manufacturing Company. In 1894 he removed to this city and engaged in the confectionery and fruit business and accumulated a comfortable fortune. In 1876 he married Miss Marie Victoria Nardi, who survives him, as do two sons, Ubaldo of this city, who is a veteran of the Spanish-American War, Icilio of Chicago and Miss Florence, who is a violinist of talent. He is also survived by one brother, Icilio, who is a major general of the Italian army, and one sister Elvino, also of Italy. Gen. Buonini distinguished himself in the Tripolitan campaign. Mr. Buonini was a boyhood friend of Puccini, the composer of Madame Butterfly and other popular operas. The two lads lived in adjoining houses in Lucca and the boyhood friendship was kept up until long after Mr. Buonini came to this country. Mr. Buonini was a member of the Modern Woodmen and of St. Mary's church. He was a man of integrity and industry, and was highly regarded by his business associates. Arrangements for the funeral are in charge of Edward Blust.
I do not have a date or newspaper name on this obit. It was most likely from a Freeport newspaper in April 1913. Submitted by: CMC57@aol.com on 26 May 1999