Atwaters  of  Stephentown


William Henry Atwater > Daniel Augustus Atwater > Royce Atwater


Royce Atwater


b. 8/22/1916     

Married Ginevra Innocenzi
b. July 8, 1916
Date of Marriage ?

Notes by Janet Atwater as told by Royce and Ginevra Atwater

Royce, the son of  Dan and Hattie  was born August 22, 1916 in Stephentown. Ginevra was born July 8, 1916 in Pittsfield, MA.  Much of Royce’s early life is documented with Dan and Hattie’s story but there is much more….

As previously noted Royce grew up in Garfield helping his Dad with the agriculture of the farm, fishing in the Kinderhook with his dad and friends and hunting a bit.   In summer he swam in the swimming hole which was located parallel to John and Hazel’s house in the Kinderhook.  It was there that he met his life- long friend Freling Smith.  They were such good friends that Freling would help him with his chores so he could finish early and they could get on with having fun.

Royce went to school house in Garfield that was converted to a home by the Sweener/Riegers. Then he went to Berlin High School.  He walked to Stephentown and took a train to Berlin.  Walking cross-lots from his home up near the top of Presbyterian hill was not any-where as long a walk as traveling to New Lebanon on foot.  His mother’s family, the Millers lived right in the center of Stephentown and in bad weather or for any other reason he could stay there and catch the train with very little walking.  He is not sure why he went to Berlin instead of New Lebanon to High School but the shorter walk and at ability to ride a train going north was probably at least part of the reason.  It should also be noted that the high school wasn’t built until the 30s when Royce was already in Berlin High School and would not have wanted to change schools.

After Graduation from Berlin High School Royce attended Berkshire Business College where he met his future Wife Ginevra Innocenzi.   After graduation from Business College Royce worked in a brokerage house in Pittsfield.   


Then he moved to Baltimore and worked for a new department in the Federal Government, the Social Security Administration. He married Ginevra on June 22, 1940 at Mt. Carmel Church in Pittsfield MA.  The marriage did not take place in the sanctuary because Royce was not Roman Catholic.  Ginevra’s sister Josie Floyd and Freling Smith were the attendants.  

Ginevra was born in Pittsfield, MA on July 8, 1916. .  Her mother died at her birth.  Her father, an engineer at GE, sent 5 year old Ginevra and her older sister to Italy to be taken care of by their grandmother. She reports that in school they had to wear black skirts and white blouses   while being indoctrinated into Fascism by the Mussolini regime.  Their father became worried that they would be denied their citizenship if they did not return so at the age of 14 she returned to the US. She had spoken only Italian for 9 years.  She and her sister began school unable to speak English. After High School she attended Berkshire Business College where she met Royce.  After Graduation from business college, Genevera worked in advertising for a couple of years before she married Royce.

Ginevra says that when she married Royce he was working in Baltimore for the Federal Government and she never thought she would end up on a farm.  When they returned to New York she found herself working in the barn sorting potatoes. She and Royce lived next door to the main house with Aunt Daisy Miller.  At the age of 72, her father lost his leg from circulatory problems and he lived his last days with Royce, Ginevra and the girls.  They remained in that house until Dan retired.  Then the families switched houses.