Dear Mr. De Marchi:
Thank you very much for your reply. I am familiar with the background and academic work of both Eduardo and Duilio Susmel, and I have also heard of Lucio and the other University Professors.According to my great-uncle and great-aunt, they were related to my great-grandfather.
I remember hearing from my great-uncle, Giacomo, who was born in Gorizia, that there was some "French background" to the first Susmel that settled in Gorizia.
My brother Alvaro has located the first Susmel in Gorizia as a "mason" ("mauer", in German) in the parish of San Rocco approximately around 1750, and has completed the family tree from there to our times (we have been told that older records were lost in a fire a long time ago). A German genealogist contacted me about three or four years ago and explained to me that our last name is derived from a name from Northern Germany that, over time, has been spelled "Susemehl", "Susemihel" and other similarly. A part of the family, at the time of the Reformation, he explained that had moved to Bohemia and then probably south. Though there is no information beyond 1750, this story seems plausible. There is a "Sussmilch" family site which picks up part of this story and claims that "Sussmilch" is one of the spellings of the name, and includes among like spellings "Susmelj", of which name there is a family in Patagonia that I have never met. If you have, or have access to, any other information, please let us know. On a personal note, my Susmel grandfather died when my father was a little boy, though we did meet his brother who also lived here and a sister that we visited in Trieste. My father and my grandmother did recollect that he spoke with a particular accent (not an Italian, one) that they did not identify as "Italian" but more like "German" (both languages were used in the educational system in Gorizia - Goerz before World War I). My father was a Mathematics Professor and later an executive with IBM. Unfortunately, he passed away earlier this year. One of my brothers is an Economics Professor in Houston, Texa,l USA; another one, Alvaro, is a civil servant in our Congress; my sister, Nuria, is a professional economist, and I have a graduate and post-graduate degree in law, though most of my work now is in financial advisory services. We are all in our forties and all of us have children, five of them carrying the Susmel name, three boys (ages 20, 16, and 8) and two girls (15 and 4). There are other cousins in the family, which descend from my great-uncle.
It is a pity that you did not look for us when you were in Buenos Aires; I am sure my father would have had you over for dinner and a long chat about family history with all of us in the family. Thank you again for your lines.