Adolphus Newton Pacetty lost his mother when he was just 2-years old. Her name was Charlotte Smith, and she lived with her husband Andrew in the small seaport of Saint Marys Georgia—just minutes north of the Florida border. The town played an unexpectedly large role in maritime smuggling during 1812-1819, and as a base for multiple military incursions aimed at running the Spanish out of the American continent.
Charlotte was a descendent of British colonials—possibly the daughter of James Smith, a signer of the Declaration of Independence. Andrew Pacetty, on the other hand, was born in Spanish East Florida, and though he was descended from Italians and Minorcans who immigrated two generations before him, he was often mistaken as a Spaniard in the Georgian low country. He was undoubtedly dark-skinned, like his Mediterranean forebears, and spoke English influenced by his family's Minorcan language.
As a young man, Andrew—who one court described as "a Spanish youth known to be a foreigner"—had multiple run-ins with the legal authorities. In one case, his employer was charged with underpaying him because he mistook him as a foreigner. In another, he was in a blameless scuffle that resulted in Andrew losing a piece of his ear.
Andrew married Charlotte in February 1827, and their first child was born five months later. Adolphus arrived two years after his sister Mary, leaving 29-year old Andrew with two toddlers to raise himself after Charlotte's passing.
By 1832, the Pacettys had returned to Andrew's childhood home of Saint Augustine Florida. He quickly remarried—this time to a 16-year old Catalina Andreu. Like Pacetty, Andreu was a family name that traced directly to the Minorcan immigration of 1768, and the Andreus were perhaps neighbors in the city's Minorcan Quarter. Andrew and Catalina added three children to the family from 1833-40, with births and baptisms split between Saint Marys and Saint Augustine.
Andrew Pacetty died in Savannah in 1872 (70), which is where his daughter Mary passed away seven years later at age 51.