The Island of Tarbarca is a small Island, to fifteen minutes in ship give of Santa Pola, Alicante.
It is an island with an ancient part very very conserved and beautiful to stroll, and another in which it is the Faro of 1860, the Tower of Saint José, of the 14th and 15th centuries and the cemetery. The island is walled off in splits it west, whereas the rest remains without walling off and allocated to the agriculture. In the Ancient part of the village conserves the big Door of the Trancada or of Saint Gabriel, the Church of San Pedro and Saint Pablo, the Door of Raise to Saint Rafael and the Door of Tuerra, of Alicante or San Miguel.
On 14 April of it declared the island reserves marine, to end to preserve the fauna and marine flora of the zone and serve of base of repoblación in profit of the ecological wealth of the waters colindantes. It is an authentic shelter so much for the flora like the marine fauna. It is interesting to visit the Cave of the Llop Marí.
We were to Tabarca to see in direct the origins of our maternal family. First we were to the Cemetery to see the graves with the Russian surnames, which was closed and after a lot of pesquisas with some isleño Russian, the civil policeman and the police, could achieve the keys to go in to the cemetery. Really it was worthwhile, see graves with the surname of your mother, Russian, odd surname in Spain.
The cemetery is simply lovely, in a tip of the island, with Door of grilles, closed of enormous chain, with walls of stone, a sun of justice on the graves, an ancient part with graves in earth and wooden crosses, another part of lap, and a last new part with lap. In 80% of the graves appear the Russian surnames, Chacopino and Pianello.
The History of the Russian surname comes from of some traders genoveses that emigrated to the island of Tabarka, in the coast northwest of Tunisia, that under the government of the Republic of Génova had installed in the island. These Italians converted the island in an important commercial centre devoted commercialisation of the red coral and to the fishing.
The island was very positioned from the strategic point of view be a member of the Mediterranean, by what the Spanish emperor Carlos V decided to incorporate it inside his campaign in the north of Africa of 1541. From this moment in Tabarka waved previous Spanish flag agreement with the traders genoveses.
Of this way, in return of a significant economic compensation and low Spanish pavilion, the genoveses achieved to control during two centurias a trade that reportaba a lot of profits, something that caused with the step of the decades the greed of the tunecinos by the island that rooted in his coastal territory. Therefore, advanced the 18th century, and in front of the Spanish passivity and the decaimiento of his military and commercial interests, the tabarkinos of origin genovés that still remained in Tabarka were subjected, esclavizados and moved to Tunisia in 1741, date from which in the island would wave flag tunicina.
Those people initiated like this a long and penoso captivity by earths tunecinas and Algerian, until 14 October 1768 , when they were freed by Carlos III, on request of religious orders redentoras that acted in the north of Africa. The tabarquinos arrived by maritime road to Cartagena and, of there, in cart until Alicante. The earl of Aranda achieved his transfer to Santa Pola.
The facts coincided with the colonisation of the Flat Island (New Tabarca) in front of the coasts of Santa Pola, for like this avoid his use by contrabandistas and pirate attacks. This fact did that the families genovesas were moved to Tabarca, to end to allow them recover the daily habitat. Like this it is as they could follow exerting the fishing like predominant activity. In total, went 296 the tabarquinos installed in the island, of which 31 had been born in Italy, 137 in Tabarka, 70 during the captivity in Tunisia and 58 during the captivity in Algiers.
The origin genovés of his current inhabitants is easy to check through a historical follow-up of the most common surnames, some phonetically hispanizados: Diver, Capriata, Chacopino, Colomba and Russo.
Of how my mother that was born in the Barceloneta result to be a direct descendant of the Russians is easy to explain: it Resulted that of Tabarca, the great-grandmother of my mother emigrate to The Sleeve of the lower Sea in Murcia, and of there the grandmother of my mother to the Barceloneta, where followed living like fishermen.
The Russian family of my mother explained histories of treasures hid under the sea in Tabarca. They gathered by the nights in the home of my grandfather, where did his cábalas of how recover the treasure, until a sister of my mother married with a man, as they explain very intelligent, that help to my uncles grandparents to recover this treasure. Resulting, after pesquisas in the island, that a Russian that belonged to the clergy, did with the treasure and it dono to the Church.
The Russian family of my mother are of character temperamental, very to the style South of Italy; with character, habladores, conversadores, liantes where there are them, explicadores of battle, histories and tales, pasionales, sufridores, exaggerated, and with a sense of the family and of what “has to be” very rooted.
The origin of the surname RUSSO comes from of the 12th century, where there was in Italy a noble family, originaria of Normandy, call Russo or Rosso (Russian or Red). In Italy was habit call Russo to the people of red hairs and white skin. Of this form turned into surname of different families. Variants of Russo are; Russian, Rousso and Roussos.