The Del Grande and Paolini Families

The Del Grande and Paolini Families
written by
Armand Roderick Paolini
Original 2011
Updated 2013
Prologue
As our two grown children, Nicole and Jared, have yet to start families of their own, they have
been able to join my wife and me on our family vacations: California, Wyoming, and our respective
hometowns of Bloomington and Chicago, Illinois. Wanting to take advantage of their freedom to travel, I
proposed another family vacation at Christmas, 2006. I was thinking of another national park in the
United States, but Jared proposed South America. My response was emphatic: if we were to consider
foreign travel, there were only two possibilities: Türkiye and Italy. The latter choice was unanimous.
In planning the trip, I started to read several travel guides to Italy, and so became overwhelmed
at the possibilities. I had no idea how to organize a trip that would not be a blur of train rides, hotels,
piazzas and churches. I discussed the problem with my wife Kathy, who immediately said that Nicole
and Jared would want to see the hometown of their great grandparents. I considered the possibility.
My grandparents were born in a town in the Abruzzo, a mountainous region on the eastern edge
of the Italian peninsula. Kathy and I had visited the town in 1973, and while quaint, it certainly was not
remarkable. My grandparents had moved to the city of Naples upon their marriage, and they lived there
for ten years before immigrating to America. To visit this city gave me apprehension to say the least.
Kathy and I had traveled in Italy in 2003, and we have spent a day in Naples, terrified that we were going
to be mugged and our purses stolen. While no such event occurred, the warnings and stories of persons
who had not been so fortunate gave me pause.
To make the visits to both Popoli and Naples meaningful, I had hoped to identify the houses
where my grandmother, Maria Beatrice Del Grande, and my grandfather, Ildebrando Alfredo Paolini, had
lived. I thought that their birth and marriage records would have their family's address, and that such
records were maintained by both civil and church authorities. In Naples, Alfredo and Beatrice operated
a tailor shop for women's clothes, and they lived in an apartment above the shop. Since five sons were
born in Naples, records of their births would be recorded by both civil and church authorities. I
therefore plunged into the labyrinth of family genealogy.
I knew that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons) has collected birth records
from all over the world so that their adherents could rescue the departed souls of their ancestors who
had never learned of Jesus Christ and who were languishing in purgatory. The Church had established
the Family History Library in Salt Lake City to coordinate and hold these records that had been captured
on microfilm. I located the film of the Registri dello stato civile (1809-19100) and began my search, but I
was soon overwhelmed. The quality of the image was poor, and I could hardly decipher, let alone
translate, the Italian script. I therefore turned to a professional in the field.
Residing in the city of L’Aquila in the Abruzzo region where the town of Popoli is located,
Pierangela Badia responded to my inquiry: "Popoli is not a large place. In some indexes I have I found
the birth of Del Grande Gilda in the year 1882, a Del Grande Donato in 1887, a Del Grande Ungaro (your
Hugo?) in 1889." She sounded as though she knew these people! She provided a report of her findings,
mainly the birth records of the Del Grande children, that is, the siblings of my grandmother, her father
Francesco Paolo Del Grande and her mother Gemma Castricone. She did provide addresses from their
birth records, but none of the streets could be found on a current map of the town.
For records in Naples, I employed the services of Joe De Simone who was able to locate the civil
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marriage record of Alfredo and Beatrice, and the birth records of their children born in Naples.
Apparently I wore out my welcome. I wanted to focus on identifying the churches of my
grandparents, and uncovering several mysteries and gaps in the histories of my immediate ancestors.
Pierangela seemed to want to identify Del Grande's and Paolini's back to the beginning of time. So I
employed another researcher, Carolyn B. Ugolini, who resides in Salt Lake City. She reads Italian, and of
course, has immediate access to the documents in the Family History Center. She provided information
that filled several gaps in the record, and also corrected some false conclusions that Pierangela and I had
made. But again, when requested to do research outside the bounds of "birth, marriage, and death," she
demurred. And so I was on my own.
I did receive enormous assistance through the local chapter of POINTers (Pursuing Our Italian
Names Together) called Il Circolo Filippo Mazzei, particularly from Donna Dengler and Daniel Else, who,
in addition to doing genealogical research, lived in the area of Naples while serving in the U.S. Navy.
They were especially helpful in locating the addresses of the residences in Naples, and in reading replies
from inquiries that I had made from Italian agencies. But most assistance was rendered and is still being
received from Norma Milas, whose mother was a Paolini from Popoli and whom I met through the
Italian Genealogical Group. As she pursues her research, we are constantly sharing our findings, stories,
triumphs, failures and always adding little bits and pieces of information as though we were putting a
jigsaw puzzle together. She is my mentor and a constant source of inspiration and encouragement.
After our trip to Italy in 2008, I wrote three papers: A Trip to Italy 2008: Tracing the Roots of our
Italian Ancestors, a travelogue; Tracing Our Italian Roots, the history of the Del Grande and Paolini
families in Italy; The Family of Beatrice and Alfredo Paolini, the history of the Del Grande and Paolini
families in America.
A genealogical history is never complete but in 2008, I wanted to get what I had on paper. Since
the trip, I have continued my investigation and have found errors in the first edition plus solved some of
the mysteries at the time of those writings. Among the most noteworthy was the elimination of non-
existent Marie Marie Paolini who was mistaken for Marie Ines Paolini; the discovery of the birth place
and parents of Donato(#2) Del Grande; and the identity and burial place of Arcangela Del Grande.
Over these past three years as my investigation continued, I have come in contact with several
hitherto unknown relatives. Before the trip to Italy, I had used a 14-day trial subscription to
Ancestry.com and I had entered three names into its online database. Upon my return, I purchased an
ongoing subscription, and I deleted one of the names in the database. Within a day, I received an E-mail
from Karen Alfano, a second cousin and a descendant of Angiolina Del Grande, one of my grandmother’s
sisters. As we both searched census records of descendants, we found Robert Sirimarco, a second cousin
once removed and his wife Alice Roche, Kathryn Lynn Leuke, a second cousin and descendant of one of
my grandmother’s brother, and lastly, Ellen Ann O’Connor, a first cousin once removed and a descendant
of my aunt Emily. As we continue to share facts, stories, photographs, we are deepening our knowledge
and perpetuating the history of the Del Grande and Paolini families.
The facts of this genealogical research are stored in a database management system called
RootsMagic that I maintain. Periodically, I upload the essential facts of birth, marriage, and death, to my
Del Grande - Paolini database that is maintained on the Ancestry.com website where it can be viewed
publically.
Ti Voglio Bene,
Armando Rod Paolini
January, 2011
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The Family of Alfredo and Beatrice Paolini
Ildebrando Alfredo Paolini
Beatrice Maria Del Grande
Armando
Arturo (Arthur Sr.)
Adolfo (Adolph)
Aldo
Attilio (Otto, Ottie)
Amelia (Emily)
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Table of Contents
Introduction
1. Return to Italy. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1
2. Ildebrando Alfredo Paolini. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27
3. Emigration of the Del Grande. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31
4. Life for the Paolini in Naples. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37
5. The Del Grande in Utica, New York. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 55
6. The Del Grande Move to Chicago. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 75
7. Arcangela Del Grande. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 83
8. The Paolini Decide to Emigrate to America. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 87
9. The Emigration of the Paolini. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 91
10. Donato Del Grande . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 105
11. Early Years in Chicago. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 109
12. Discovery of Donato Paolini. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 120
13. Work and Play. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 123
14. The Great War. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 143
15. The Family Reunited. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 153
16. Five Weddings and Two Funerals. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 165
17. Conclusion. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 187
Epilogue. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 199
Appendices. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 199
A: Manifest of the ship SS Moltke
B: Italy’s Commissariat of Emigration
C: Ethnic Territories of the Near West Side
D: Arrigo Park
E: Italian Funeral Customs
F: St. Mary Training School for Boys
G: Descendant List of Francesco Paolo Del Grande
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Introduction
Quelli che manca di scrivere delle vite di loro antenati merita li è dimenticati.
(Those who fail to write about the lives of their ancestors deserve to be forgotten themselves.)
Genealogy has no beginning point save perhaps Adam and Eve–or Lucy–depending upon your
religious beliefs–and the end point is always a moving forward. My purpose was not to trace my pedigree
to some distant ancestor who, of course, would be of noble birth. I wanted to know more about the people
that I had known in my childhood: my grandmother, my aunt and uncles. Therefore this family history
covers only three generations: their life in Italy, their passage to America, and their life in America.
Genealogy is primarily concerned with three basic facts: birth, marriage and death. I have
gathered that data, and I present the essential in these pages; but I wanted to capture the storia of the
Paolini and Del Grande families – the Italian language using one word for both concepts. Over the course of
my own life, I had heard legends, stories, little incidents, and opinionated descriptions of my relatives. I
heard the many stories of my father so often that they became somewhat tiresome; now I worry that they
will never be told again. And so I decided to write them in order that they may be preserved.
As I began to gather the stories and write them, another purpose evolved: to put their story in
the context of time and place. I attempt to describe the historical events, movements, and conditions of the
period that impacted or at least influenced the decisions and the lives of these people. They lived in
momentous times! Their lives were emblematic of what some consider the largest mass migration of
contemporary times. They struggled out of poverty. They integrated themselves into American life and
culture. No doubt the basic theme of the struggle of immigrants in America has been told many times by
many nationalities. But this is my history. These were my ancestors. I knew them. Before this writing, I
had not the awareness to express my gratitude.
Most historiography is written about great men and women doing extraordinary things. This is
the storia of ordinary people seemingly doing ordinary things at the time and from their own point of view.
It is when we, their heirs and beneficiaries, look over such a life, we appreciate their extraordinary
accomplishments.
While much of the factual information comes from archival sources such as birth records,
naturalization petitions, census data, and ship manifests, the accounts of incidents and the description of
events stem from two principle sources: my mother, Isabel Flavia Daniels Paolini, who was thoughtful and
kind enough to inquire and listen to her mother-in-law tell her stories over the years; and my father, Attilio
(Otto) Paolini who told his stories to me since I was a child, but who also wrote them in his autobiography.
Since my father's story is part of the family's history, and because it provides a perspective of the family, I
have included, to a considerable degree, direct quotes from his autobiography.
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This is my third effort in trying to capture and report the storia of my Italian ancestors. My first
attempt was when I was a sophomore at Beloit College when I was given an assignment to interview a
person and write their autobiography. I attempted to interview my grandmother, but I had not the skill to
conduct an interview, and she was too modest to extol her own story. It was a lost opportunity I sorely
regret. Over the years, I did learn her story from my father and mother, and so I wrote her a card:
Dear Grandmother Paolini,
Someone suggested that I change my name. Paolini is a
difficult name to spell correctly, and no one can pronounce it.
But after hearing of all that you have done in your life, I'm
very proud to be a Paolini.
I hope that this storia explains why.
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Chapter 1
Return to Italy
Reflection in Naples
The caretaker asked whether or not she wished to see her son. Beatrice thought a moment, and
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then declined. When he dies, his little body had been embalmed and supposedly preserved; but when
she saw him last–just before departing for America, she had notice a spot of decay. No, she thought She
did not want to see her child with any disfigurement. She asked to remain awhile in the little
mausoleum as she wished to be alone with her beloved son, Attilio, who had died at age six months.
Beatrice had returned to Naples after emigrating from Italy forty-seven years earlier in 1906. As
she sat in the quiet of this solitary space, she reflected on her life: its milestones, its tragedies, its great
contrasts, and the great events within her lifetime.
She was born and raised in the small town of Popoli in the mountainous region of the Abruzzo,
and now she lived in the second largest city in America–Chicago. She had worked as a little girl in her
father’s tailor shop cleaning the hems of ladies’ dresses. When only seventeen, she married and she and
her husband started their own tailoring shop in Naples. After tens years, the family had joined one of the
greatest flood of emigrants the world has ever seen. In leaving Italy, she had crossed the Atlantic on the
SS Moltke, berthed in steerage, and now she had returned on the luxury liner, the SS Andrea Doria, in her
own cabin. She had lost a husband and two sons. She had endured deprivation and hardship through
two world wars and the Great Depression. She had been a union organizer and striker in the movement
to improve working conditions in the great industrial age while becoming head of the household and
chief wage earner for her family of five sons and one daughter. She had worked forty-three years in the
garment industry, and now she was retired and could afford to take a European vacation, including a trip
to her country of origin and the two towns in which she had lived.
The Region of Abruzzo
"Listen to him talk about the Abruzzi. There's more snow there than here. He doesn't want to
see peasants. Let him go to centres of culture and civilization."
Hemingway, Ernest, A Farewell to Arms
Beatrice had returned a few days prior from a visit to her hometown of Popoli, in the Abruzzo,
which is a region located midway along the Italian peninsula and adjacent to the Adriatic Sea; it is east of
Rome and northeast of Naples (see maps).
As the train rolled eastward, it began its slow ascent, first meandering through the valleys, and
then cutting directly through the mountains in tunnels that seemed to be miles in length. These
mountains surrounded the town of Popoli as the walls of her village.
‘Beatrice' is not a particularly beautiful name in English, but in Italian it is pronounced,
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"ba-ä-'tre-(,)cha," or "bee a' tree' che", which I think is quite beautiful. It is the name of the woman idealized
by Dante Alighieri in his masterpiece, the Divine Comedy. In a work by Paget Toynbee entitled, Dante
Alighieri: His Life and Works, the author mentions that Beatrice Portinari was called Bice (pronounced Bee’
che), and my grandmother was called by this nickname as well.
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They reflected the seasons of the year: green in summer, then turning bright red and yellow in
autumn then brown, and finally white when laden with snow in winter. The mountains were dotted
with little villages that made the scenery so picturesque. She wished she could visit every one of them,
but she was anxious to reach Popoli. The train lumbered through the Apennines mountains, and then
braced itself as it descended into the inter-mountain basin of Sulmona. The winding descent of the train
reminded her of a trip she had taken with her father when she was a child. Traveling by the diligenza or
stagecoach, the road switched back and forth, thus allowing the passengers to view the valley below on
one side of the coach and then the other. With each turn, they viewed the little town that was their
destination. Obviously unaware of this contortion, a woman passenger remarked: "My! There are so
many towns on this road!" Beatrice and her father just smiled at each other.
The mountains didn’t seem as high as when she was a little girl,
but she knew that they had greatly influenced life in the Abruzzo. Until
the building of the railroad, they had been a barrier to travel and to
commerce such that the Abruzzese were isolated. They lagged in
economic development and awareness of the changing social and
political ideas. They were viewed by their countrymen as provincials.
Much of the poverty of the South of Italy has been attributed to the large
landowners who did not introduce modern farming methods; but even
if they had done so, it would have been impossible to transport their
produce to the markets of Naples, Rome, and Pescara because there
were few roads around and out of this mountainous region.
From time immemorial, the economy of the region had been based on sheep farming and
agriculture, practiced according to age-old methods. Abruzzo was the summer feeding grounds for the
great transhumance, the seasonal movement of livestock, mainly sheep, that started in spring from
Foggia in the region of Puglia, almost 185 miles (300km) to the southeast. Now, since World War II, the
2
transhumance has been replaced by sedentary forms of sheep-breeding integrated with agriculture.
3
After the unification of Italy in 1860-1870, there was a great expectation of agrarian reform but
because of collusion between the large landowners of the south and the industrialists of the north, the
reform never took place, and many farmers lost their property as they could not pay their taxes. Many,
along with former soldiers of the army of Garibaldi (Red Shirts) and the army of the Bourbons, turned to
brigandage. Viewed by their supporters, past and present, their activity was not just thievery but an
insurrection. Reprisals were cruel and bloody on both sides and often the poor were caught in the
middle of fights; whole villages were destroyed and hundreds of peasants were shot without a trial
under the unfounded accusation of protecting the brigands. In the end, it was brutally suppressed
ending about 1878–a year before Beatrice was born.
The isolation of the Abruzzo was finally broken by the introduction of the railway network which
connected Pescara, Ancona and Foggia, and later in the Sangro area, to Naples.
Diligenza
Luigi, “Transhumance in central Italy”, Agricultural Biodiversity Weblog, August 30, 2007.
2
http://agro.biodiver.se/2007/08/transhumance-in-central-italy/
Avram, Maria, “The Legacy of Transhumance in National Park of Abruzzo Lazio and Molise (PNALM):
3
Rediscovery and Exploitation,” GeoJournal of Tourism and Geosites, Year II, no. 2, vol. 4, 2009, pag. 153-159.
http://gtg.webhost.uoradea.ro/PDF/GTG-2-2009/06_OK_Avram.pdf, online November 30, 2009.
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Maps of Italy, Abruzzo, and Popoli
Map of Popoli
Abruzzo region
Italy and the region of Abruzzo
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Popoli
Photos courtesy of Giovanni
Lattanzi at
www.inabruzzo.it/fotoabruzzo
Popoli in the Mountains Popoli by the Pescara River
Popoli in the morning
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In ancient times Abruzzo was inhabited by several peoples, including the Equi, Marsi, Vestini and
Praetutii, who were conquered by the Romans before the third century BCE. After the decline of the
Roman Empire, the region broke up into small feudal states, and during the early Middle Ages, the Abruzzo
was under the control of the Lombard duchy of Spoleto. In the 12th century the Normans conquered the
territory, which became part of the Kingdom of Sicily and then under Frederick II of Hohenstaufen which
had the neighboring city of Sulmona as the regional capital.
After the fall of the Hohenstaufen dynasty in the 13th century, the regions of Abruzzo and Molise in
turn came under the control of the Anjou (Charles of Anjou), the Aragonese (Alfonso V of Aragon), the
Spanish Hapsburgs (Charles VIII), and finally, in the 18th century, the Bourbon Kingdom of Naples (1735-
1796), under whose rule the region was divided into sub-regions of Molise, Abruzzo Ulteriore I, Abruzzo
4
Ulteriore II, Abruzzo Citra–hence it was, and is, often referenced in the plural: Abruzzi. By the early 19th
century small liberal groups were taking part in revolutionary activities, and in 1860 the region became
part of the united Kingdom of Italy.
The Town of Popoli
After passing through the city of
Sulmona, Beatrice could see in the distance, on
Monte Rotondo , the ruins of the Castello di
5
Popoli (see photograph), originally built in
1016. In a few minutes, she arrived at the
train station. When a little girl, she was at this
very station when the first train came to
Popoli in the late 1800s. A smile came to her
lips as she recalled an old man warning her:
"Don't ever go on that machine–that's the
work of the Devil." The Catholic Church also
did not have a favorable opinion of this
newfangled contraption, and it had forbidden
its followers to use the railways as it was believed to promote public indecency. Pope Gregory XVI
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(1831–1846) prevented the construction of railways in the Papal States, and was reputed to have said
"chemin de fer, chemin d'enfer" ("the iron road, the road to hell"). Pope Pius IX (1792-1878) was more
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sympathetic to modern times, especially after independence and unification, and allowed the introduction
of railways--and even gas lighting–in 1860.
Photo courtesy of Paolo Mulazzani at www.fotomulazzani.com
In 1953 there were five provinces comprising the region: L'Aquila, Pescara, Teramo, Chieti and
4
Campobasso, the latter being split-off to from the region of Molise in 1963.
Di Gregorio, Luciano, Abruzzo, Bradt Travel Guides Ltd, Bucks, England, January 2010, p.89.
5
A more cynical explanation is that the pope opposed basic technological innovations because he
6
believed that they would promote commerce and increase the power of the bourgeoisie, leading to demands
for liberal reforms which would undermine the monarchical power of the papacy over in the Papal States
(central Italy). http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pope_Gregory_XVI
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rail_transport_in_Vatican_City#cite_note-3
7
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Beatrice exited the station and walked along the street that had since been renamed Viale Bruno
Buozzi. She crossed over the confluence of the rivers Aterno and Pescara on the bridge called the Ponte
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Risorgimento. The rivers ran as clear now as they did when she lived here as there are numerous springs
that form a small, crystal-clear lake, surrounded by woods and reedbeds.
9
She entered the town from the west, and stopped to rest in the Piazza Giuseppe Paolini (see
photograph), a public square dedicated to an infantry commander of the Italian Army and recognized for
his actions during the Great War. In addition to recognition by his countrymen, he was recognized by the
United States:
Army Distinguished Service Medal
Awarded for actions during the World War I
The President of the United States of America, authorized by Act of Congress, J uly 9,
1918, takes pleasure in presenting the Army Distinguished Service Medal to Lieutenant
General Giuseppe Paolini, Italian Army, for exceptionally meritorious and distinguished
service in a position of great responsibility to the Government of the United States,
during World War I. While Commanding the 11th Army Corps, 3d Italian Army, General
Paolini rendered services of inestimable value to the American Expeditionary Forces and
to the cause in which the United States has been engaged.
General Orders: War Department, General Orders No. 45 (1919)
While she now bore the same name,
Paolini, she knew that it was doubtful that her
husband was a relation to so prominent of person.
She resumed her travel on Via Capponi.
10
She noted that there was a whole new section of the
town to the south, but she proceeded directly to the
old section and the main square: the Piazza della
Libertà (see photograph).
11
Piazza Paolini and the
Monument to the Fallen circa 1950
Courtesy of Norma Milas
A trade unionist and Italian politician who openly defied fascism by leading strikes in 1925. He was
8
persecuted by the regime and threatened many times to death, forcing him to move to France. He returned to
Italy and was active in the Resistance; on the run, he was arrested and shot by the Germans in 1944.
The area is now the Pescara Springs Nature Reserve.
9
Marquis Gino Capponi (1792-1876) was an Italian statesman and historian.
10
http://www.tavernaducalepopoli.beniculturali.it/index.php?en/92/the-collection
11
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Popoli
Sorgenti_del_Pescara
Courtesy of Viaggio in Abruzzo
http://www.viaggioinabruzzo.it/
Monument to the Fallen with a statue to Liberty
Courtesy of RABoe/Wikipedia; photo found at
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Popoli_36.jpg
License requirements at
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/de/legalcode
Piazza Duchi Cantelmo
Courtesy of Viaggio in Abruzzo
http://www.viaggioinabruzzo.it/
Piazza della Libertà
Courtesy of Viaggio in Abruzzo
http://www.viaggioinabruzzo.it/
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Popoli
Scalinata Trinità dei Monti e Santissima Trinità
Courtesy of Antonio Di Bacco
http://www.flickr.com/photos/vulkan/136390017/in/photostream/
Piazza San Lorenzo
Santi Lorenzo e Biagio
Campanile di Santissima Trinità
Via Cavour
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It might have been called Piazza Margherita when she lived in Popoli, but it probably appeared
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much the same to her then as it did when she was a little girl, having maintained its original 15th century
character with its apartment buildings, palazzi, and the church of San Francesco all surrounding the paved
square with a fountain in the middle.
Though she traveled lightly, her arm was beginning to ache from carrying her suitcase. She found
the hotel and approached the front desk: “Mi chiamo Beatrice Paolini. Ho una prenotazione.” Without
hesitation, the desk clerk replied, “Ah sì, sì, signora Paolini. L’ho!” It was such a pleasure to be able to say
her name only once to have it understood, and not having to spell it two or three times. She quickly
freshened herself and then resumed her tour of the town.
She walked up Via Cavour and past
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the Piazza Duchi Cantelmo to the Scalinata
Trinità dei Monti (the Flight of steps of the
trinity of mountains) to view once again the
churches Santissima Trinità and the adjacent
Santi Lorenzo e Biagio (see photographs).
The flight of stairs seemed higher and longer
now than when she scampered up and down
them as a young girl. She gazed up at the
campanile of Santissima Trinità to read the
date: 1648. As she reached the top,
memories flooded her mind.
One day she and her sister Gilda
entered the bell tower and rang the bells.
They secreted themselves so that no one
could see them. When the townspeople
came to the church to determine who had
rung the bells, they found no one, and then declared: "A miracle, a miracle!"
Beatrice and Gilda performed another miracle when they went into the church and hid behind the
statue of the Virgin Mary. When an old and crippled woman, walking with the aid of a cane, came to pray to
the Virgin, Beatrice and Gilda whispered from behind the statue in order to sound as though the Virgin was
speaking. The old woman became hysterical, and even though she was not able to walk, she hobbled and
stumbled out of the church. The old woman and townspeople again declared a miracle had occurred.
Unfortunately, a week later, the poor women died. Beatrice thought sadly, but with a touch of whimsy:
"We killed that lady!"
Via Cavour and the Scalinata Trinità dei Monti
Courtesy of Viaggio in Abruzzo
http://www.viaggioinabruzzo.it/
Margherita of Savoy (Margherita Maria Teresa Giovanna (1851– 1926)), was the Queen consort of
12
the Kingdom of Italy during the reign (1878-1900) of her husband, Umberto I; she was quite popular among
the Italian people. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Queen_Margherita
Camillo Paolo Filippo Giulio Benso, Count of Cavour (1810–1861) was a leading figure in the
13
movement toward Italian unification.
-14-
Beatrice visited the many houses in which her family–the Del Grande–had resided. They were
14
easily remembered by the births of the Del Grande children, including her own:
Name Date of Birth Date of Death Address where born
Maria Beatrice 2 May 1879 6 Jan 1969 Via Offia, No. 30
15
Maria Gilda 30 Jan 1882 26 Aug 1944| Via Offia, No. 30
Maria Angiolina 8 Feb 1884 5 Jan 1968 Via Attoia, No. 5
Maria Nazzarena 6 Mar 1886 8 Dec 1887 Via San Lorenzo 20
Inez Guistina 29 Jun 1887 7 Feb 1889 Via San Lorenzo 45
Ungaro Tarquinio 31 Ju1 1889 3 Nov 1943 Via di Sopra 45
Maria Ines 14 Dec 1891 May 1971
Carlo Alberto 23 Dec 1893 4 Jul 1973 Vico Venti Aurelio Saffi, n. 10
Italia 24 Apr 1896 20 Jul 1887
Italia Arminda (Lillian) 27 Feb 1899 16 Apr 1987 Born in the United States
Donato 26 Jan 1904 6 Jan 1909 Born in the United States
None of the names of the streets now exist (year 2010), and they may have been changed even
before Beatrice returned in 1953. With the exception of Vico Venti Aurelio Saffi, all the addresses were
probably around the Piazza San Lorenzo (see map and
photograph) of today. It is surprising how many times
the Del Grande family moved in the course of twenty-
five years.
Beatrice searched for familiar faces, and asked
several people that she met whether or not they
remembered the Del Grande family. Only one old man
thought that he remembered them. No Del Grande
reside in the town now.
Family Legends
The ancestors of the Del Grande family resided
in the hill town of Pacentro, southeast of Popoli and
16
Sulmona; but the family name may go back even farther.
One legend is that the Del Grande were French
aristocracy and had to flee the country during the French Revolution (1789–1799), but a descendant of the
family was dissolute and dissipated the family fortune. As described, the legend is obviously false as the
Del Grande, or De Grandis as the surname is listed in several birth records, were residing in Italy as early as
1735–well before the French Revolution.
Scalinata Trinità dei Monti
Courtesy of Antonio Di Bacco
www.flickr.com/photos/vulkan/2179889009/
The dates and addresses of the births in Italy were taken from the Registri dello Stato Civile, 1809-
14
1910 by genealogist Pierangela Badia who lives in the capital of the region, L’Aquila.
Records that were created based upon declarations by Beatrice have the year of 1880, but her birth
15
record (Atto di Nascita) is in the year 1879.
The ancestral home of Madonna Ciccone–better know as “Madonna.”
16
-15-
Another legend is that they came from Spain. Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor and King of Spain,
17
gained control of most of Italy in the 16 century, and brought Spaniards to be administrators of territories
th
and cities, such as the famous Pedro Álvarez de Toledo who was appointed Viceroy of Naples. It is possible
that a Del Grande came for such a position or as a retainer to someone. How and why he and/or his
descendants settled in a poor and isolated town in the Abruzzo is a mystery.
The earliest record of the De Grandis is an atto di matrimonio for the son of Vincenzo De Grandis.
18
Vincenzo, at the year of his death, was sixty-nine in 1804, and thus he was born about 1735. He had a
19
father named Paolo, so the De Grandis were in Pacentro at an even earlier date.
The son of Vincenzo De Grandis was Raffaele, and he married Maria Carmina D’Inocenzzo in 1823;
they had at least two children: Donato and Arcangela. Donato married Angela Moscia in 1849 and they had
seven children :
20
Name Date of Birth
Marianna 18 Jan 1851
Maria Raffaela 5 Jul 1852
Anna 26 Feb 1854
Francesco Paolo 11 Mar 1856
Lucia 26 Dec 1857
Maria Grazia 30 Nov 1859
Angiolo 13 Apr 1862
The genealogist that was retained to provide extracts of the birth, marriage, and death records of
the Del Grande and Paolini families in Popoli stated “there is no Del Grande any more.” However, as
21
further research has shown and will be described later in chapter 10, there were other Del Grande from
Popoli that immigrated to America.
This legend was told by Carol Jean Paolini [Tallon] in a private conversation with the author.
17
E-mail correspondence with Pierangela Badia, genealogical researcher in L’Aquila, Abruzzo, Italy,
18
June 20, 2007: “12. 1823 10 July – marriage act of Raffaele de Grandis yo 43 born in Pacentro son of late
Vincenzo and late Francesca Paola Iezzi with Carmina D'Innocenzo born in Popoli of Silvestro and Gioconda
Castricone.”
E-mail correspondence with Pierangela Badia, genealogical researcher in L’Aquila, Abruzzo, Italy,
19
June 20, 2007: 15. 1804 18 December – death-extract of Vincenzo de Grandis of late Paolo, husband of
Francesca Paola Iezzi, age 69 birth about 1735 (attached in 1823 marriage acts).
E-mail correspondence with Pierangela Badia, genealogical researcher in L'Aquila, Abruzzo, Italy,
20
June 20, 2007.
E-mail from Pierangela Badia, February 23, 2007.
21
-16-
Beatrice's father was Francesco Paolo Del Grande, but respectfully addressed as ‘Don Francesco.'
22
The title "Don" (and Donna for women) is an honorific originally reserved for royalty, select nobles, and
church hierarchs, possibly originating in Spain but adopted by other Latin countries. It was/is often used as
a mark of esteem for a person of personal, social or official distinction, such as a community leader of long
standing or a person of significant wealth.
Infant Mortality
Beatrice came to the cemetery. Her mother, Gemma Castricone, bore eleven children. Three of
23
them died before the age of two: Maria Nazzarena, Ines Guistina, and Italia. She still felt the loss as she had
played and cared for them all. She looked briefly for the graves but decided that their graves had been
removed and the site reused. Land for cemeteries in Italy is limited, and grave sites are reused.
Infant mortality was very high in Italy before the late 1900s. In 1911 it was 151/1,000 meaning
that 151 babies out of 1,000 born had died before they were a year old; in 1950, about the time of Beatrice’s
visit, the figure had greatly decreased though still relatively high: 70/1,000. These high rates encouraged
people to have several children, especially those living in rural areas.
24
There were several causes of infant mortality, the primary being intestinal infections, especially
during the summer. Infants were sometimes fed a formula of pabulum consisting of animal’s milk mixed
25
with grain, and if it were given repeatedly during a period of fourteen hours or more, there was an
increased likelihood of gastroenteritis, diarrhea, or constipation. The mixture should have been cooked
until thickened in order to soften the grain and kill bacteria. Were it not baked, either to conserve fuel
and/or to not bother to make a fire, especially on a hot day, the pabulum would be even more difficult to
digest and be more susceptible to bacterial growth.
26
In the course of my genealogical research, I discovered several names for my great grandfather. Of
22
course his birth name was Francesco Paolo Del Grande, but I remember that my father referred to him as Don
Francesco. This title was probably used in formal settings and before small children upon whom their
parents wished to instill a sense of respect for elders. On the manifest of his first voyage to America, he is
listed as "Franc. Del Grande" and on census sheet and on his tomb, his name is written as "Frank Del Grande."
His grandson, Robert Sirimarco, said that he was called "Chico Paolo," probably a nickname in informal
settings among close friends.
In the biography of Lily, it states that she "had three brothers and eight sisters.” Thus, there would
23
be a total of twelve children, including Lily. The eleven listed are confirmed by birth records.
John Davidson, The Demographic Transition Model: Italy and Kenya Compared, GeoActive Online,
24
Series 14 Autumn issue Unit 276 The Demographic Transition Model: Italy and Kenya Compared © 2002
Nelson Thornes. http://www.nelsonthornes.com/secondary/geography/geoactive/series14/ga276.pdf
Arlacchi, Pino, Mafia, Peasants, and Great Estates: Society in Traditional Calabria, Press Syndicate of
25
the University of Cambridge, 1980, p. 182.
Bell, Rudolph M., Fate and Honor, Family and Village: Demographic and Cultural Change in Rural
26
Italy Since 1800, University of Chicago Press, Chicago and London, 1979, p. 40.
-17-
Several studies found that the contamination of milk led to several medical complications:
Even sterile milk contains saprophytic bacteria, and if milk is left standing in warm weather,
counts rise very rapidly to more than one million per milliliter. One group of these bacteria
causes the souring of milk, which is harmless, but other strains evoke vomiting and diarrhea.
Even when death did not follow, the standard treatment of providing the infant with no food until
it recovered served to weaken further its resistance to a variety of infectious diseases.
27
In addition to contaminated food, there were infectious diseases: malaria, bacterial meningitis,
cholera, smallpox, and typhoid.
Lastly, and somewhat surprisingly, poor care by mother substitutes was found to be a factor in
contributing to infant mortality. Mothers sometimes had to leave the care of an infant and younger children
to that of an older child for a short time to either shop or tend the garden; or, in the case of a farmer’s wife,
to bring in the harvest, in which case, she may be absent the entire day. Incompetent or inattentive care
might include improper or inadequate feeding; failure to maintain sanitary conditions, such as not washing
hands with soap and water; and tying the baby with bands of cloth, either too tightly thereby cutting off
circulation, or too loosely so that the baby may have pried the band to its neck and then choked.
A case of poor care by a mother substitute was told innocently by Beatrice herself. As the oldest,
she was often entrusted with the care of her younger siblings. One day she was given the care of Ungaro,
who was a baby at the time. There was a shed for animals nearby, and she put Ungaro in a manger–“just
like the baby Jesus,” she said--and then went out to play. Forgetting all about him, she spent the entire day
playing, and did not remember her charge until it was time to return home. She rushed to the shed and
found him completely covered with hay. Fearing that he was dead, she frantically brushed away the hay
only to find him well and happy. She carefully brushed off all the hay and solemnly returned him to her
mother.
Improvements in various aspects of infant health and care have greatly reduced infant mortality in
Italy and the world: “advances in medical knowledge of disease transmission, rising concern with public
health, widespread pasturization of milk (which alone may have cut infant mortality from 150 per 1,000 to
less than 100 per 1,000), development of vaccination programs, and better nutrition due both to
agricultural production increases and reduced population pressure resulting from emigration.” Italy now
28
has one of the lowest infant mortality rates in the world: 5.51 (compared 6.26 for the United States). As a
29
consequence, Italians are now having small families.
Ibid., p. 41.
27
Ibid, p.56.
28
The World Fact Book, U.S. Central Intelligence Agency. Infant mortality rates as of February 19,
29
2010. https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/fields/2091.html
-18-
Beatrice thought about her own close call as a bambina. The family was returning home late one
night with a group of friends. With the exception of the driver, all were laying on the straw of the wagon
with baby Beatrice asleep on a white pillow. Lulled by the plodding pace of the ox and the swaying motion
of the cart, everyone dozed off. Someone awoke and noticed that the pillow and Beatrice were gone. An
awakened Don Francesco looked back down the road and saw a small white spot in the distance. Racing
back, he found her still asleep on her pillow.
Popoli the Name
The use of oxen, mules and donkeys were still in evidence as Beatrice proceeded on her tour of
Popoli. She came to the Taverna Ducale, also known as the Taverna Vecchia (see photograph), built in the
14 century. It was originally built by Giovanni Cantelmo, Count of Popoli. It was built to collect the
th 30 31
decima, a tithe or the tenth part of a property’s value, which the vassals (subjects) had to give to their
suzerain. Later the building became a taverna and then a hotel, using the rooms on the upper floor as guest
rooms. It is one of the most historical medieval buildings in Abruzzo with its remarkable facade full of
emblems and decorations.
As a settlement, the town has pre-Roman origins, though its current layout dates from the 13
th
century. Lying along the main transportation routes from the Adriatic coasts to Naples, the so-called Via
degli Abruzzi, the town has always had strategic importance. It was a prosperous town during the Middle
Ages, with a thriving wool industry and basking in the patronage of the wealthy families of the Kingdom of
Naples.
32
The name Popoli can be simply translated as ‘peoples', but the etymology of the name is uncertain.
It's name has been said to derive from the Latin word "populus" for the pioppo plant that grows in
abundance around the area. However, this theory is not widely accepted because the pioppo plant grows all
over Italy, making it an inadequate reason to name a town. Another theory is based on the ancient name of
Castrum pauperum, recorded in the Chronicon Casauriense a document that links the name to the meaning
of "poor"–an impoverished or persecuted population. In the local vernacular, the town was often called
Puòpere.
33
“History of a family: the Cantelmos,” Journal of the Abruzzo World Club, Year II, No. 7, May 2001.
30
http://www.abruzzoheritage.com/magazine/2001_05/0105_b.htm
“His remaining lands in Alvito and Popoli were assigned to his brother Giovanni Cantelmo with the
31
title of Count.” Article entitled, Duchy of Sora, Wikipedia. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Duchy_of_Sora
Di Gregorio, Luciano, Abruzzo, p.88.
32
“Abruzzo Today: The Abruzzo Travel Information,”
33
http://abruzzotoday.com/towns/towns-and-villages-in-abruzzo/popoli.html
-19-
Popoli
Taverna Ducale and Salita Courtesy of RABoe/Wikipedia; photo found at
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Popoli_18.jpg
License requirements at http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/de/legalcode
San Domenico
(now the city hall)
Piazza della Libertà
Courtesy of Viaggio in Abruzzo
http://www.viaggioinabruzzo.it/ Taverna Ducale
Salita
Reliefs of the Taverna Ducale
Nicola Costantini
-20-
-21-
Beatrice retraced her steps and returned to the Piazza San Lorenzo and then south along the street
named Giordano Bruno until she arrived at the monastery of San Domenico (see photograph). She rested
34 35
in the tranquil green that is enclosed by the surrounding buildings.
She had heard that Popoli was bombarded twice during World War II by the British Air Force. On
the 20 of January, 1944, the bridge over the Aterno River was destroyed. It was the most important bridge
th
in the region, called the "Julius Caesar" bridge, because in lay on the road that connected Rome with the city
of Pescara on the Adriatic coast. Then on March 22, 1944 at noon, the city center and city hall were
destroyed by substantial bombing by the British. Unfortunately, it was a day that rations were being
distributed to populace at the city hall, and there were long lines of women and children, many of whom
were killed or wounded. The day is still remembered with sorrow by the Popolese.
Class Structure in Italy
Beatrice’s father, Don Francesco, was probably a ‘merchant tailor,’ that is, one who made and sold
clothes in his shop. It is not know whether the shop was on the first floor of his house with living quarters
on the second–a casa bottega–or he had a separate shop in the business section. If the latter, then it was
probably located somewhere along Corso Antonio Gramsci or Via Giuseppe Mazzini, or perhaps a little
36 37
side street (a vicolo) between these two parallel streets.
The class structure of Italy in the 1800's can be categorized as follows: 1) the nobility; 2) the large
landholders (also labeled the aristocracy when including the nobility); 3) the bourgeoisie or middle-class
and the nouveau riche; 4) the professionals, including the clergy; 5) petit-bourgeoisie composed of artisans
and small shopkeepers; 6) the contandini or small farmers; and 7) the giornalieri or day workers, the
majority of whom worked on farms of the large landowners or for the nouveau riche who had leased farms.
Clearly the Del Grande family were members of the petit-bourgeoisie or, in Italian, piccola borghesia.
Even as a little girl, Beatrice worked in the shop as she was first given the task of cleaning the hems
of ladies' skirts. Since women wore long dresses in those days, their hems dragged along the ground. It
must have been a laborious task for a little girl, one that would steel her for the future. Nothing is known
about her early adolescence but it is likely that she worked as a cucitrice or seamstress, the title of the
profession of tailoring performed by women as noted in the register of births, marriages and deaths of the
town–the Registri dell stato civile.
He was burned at the stake by authorities in 1600 after the Roman Inquisition found him guilty of
34
heresy.
In the 1960's, the complex was used as a barracks for the Carabinieri. In 1975, barracks were built
35
at a new location, and the complex was transferred to the comune and made the municipio (city hall).
Antonio Gramsci (1891-1937) was an Italian philosopher, writer, politician and political theorist. A
36
founding member and onetime leader of the Communist Party of Italy, he was imprisoned by Benito
Mussolini's Fascist regime. His writings mostly deal with the analysis of culture and political leadership. He
is notable as a highly original thinker within the Marxist tradition. He is renowned for his concept of cultural
hegemony as a means of maintaining the state in a capitalist society.
Giuseppe Mazzini (1805–1872), was an Italian patriot, philosopher and politician. His efforts
37
helped bring about the modern Italian state in place of the several separate states, many dominated by foreign
powers, that existed until the 19th century. He also helped define the modern European movement for
popular democracy in a republican state.
-22-
Beatrice probably helped her mother in the garden as well. It’s quite likely that the Del Grande had
a little field or market garden outside the town so as to supplement the food that they had to purchase in
town. Often these gardens were not owned individually but held ‘in common’ by the comune di Popoli.
The Miracle Workers
Beatrice still had time to play with her best friend: her sister Gilda. They didn’t just provide
miracles to Popoli, but portents as well. Playing outside one day, Beatrice and Gilda went down to the
corner house, knocked on the door, then ran and hid. A man came to the door and looked out, but seeing no
one, he withdrew and closed the door. They did this a second and a third time with the same results. A few
days later, Beatrice accompanied her father to the corner house as he was making a garment for a lady in
the family. When the man answered the door, he said, "Oh, Mr. Del Grande, we have a tragedy in the family.
My dear mother just passed away. Of course, the Lord warned us–just a few days ago, there were three
knocks on the door, and we knew it was a messenger of death."
No one seems to doubt the existence of miracles–or at least there is no voice of denial. Perhaps the
belief in miracles stems for the need for help of a people who have little control of their lives. Miracles offer
hope; they offer explanation for events that are mysterious; and they provide a feeling of closeness with
God. To doubt these miracles is to negate a structural element of the society. And so it is necessary to
believe even when the evidence would normally cause doubt or denial. When Beatrice was a little girl, her
grandmother brought her to a religious shrine at which miracles were being performed. Beatrice wormed
her way through the crowd to the front in order see what was really happening. A man who could not
speak was first to be brought forward to the healer. The man mumbled a bit, and the crowd shouted, "A
miracle, a miracle–he can speak." Beatrice returned to her grandmother and said, "Oh Nonna, he didn't
speak; he just went bluh bluh bluh." Whap! Her grandmother had given her a sharp slap across her mouth.
The voice of a disbeliever had been silenced.
Beatrice did reveal one truth to the world–or at least to her mother. Gilda loved to eat, and she
would climb on a chair and help herself to the dried sausages, meats and cheeses that were hung from the
rafters of their home. When her mother Gemma saw that someone had been taking food and accused Gilda,
Gilda denied culpability and said that Beatrice had taken the food. Her mother knew that Beatrice had a
very small appetite, and Gilda was always eating, so she really knew the truth; but Beatrice wanted to prove
that Gilda was guilty. The next time Gilda climbed on a chair and held onto the rafters to take some
delicacy, Beatrice pulled the chair away, leaving Gilda hanging from the rafters so that when Gemma
returned, Gilda was caught in the act.
Education
Beatrice was the beneficiary of progressive legislation enacted even before the Risorgemento. “In
1859, the Casati Law laid down the provisions for the organization of state education.” It made primary
38
education compulsory, having the goal of reducing illiteracy. This law gave responsibility for primary
education to the single towns, secondary education to the provinces (counties), and higher education, that
is, the universities, to the central government. The law specified only two years of compulsory education
39
because lawmakers believed that parents, especially in rural farm areas, would not have cooperated and
The Education System in Italy 2007/08, Eurybase: The Information Database on Education Systems
38
in Europe, European Commission, 2008, p. 1.
http://eacea.ec.europa.eu/eurydice/ressources/eurydice/eurybase/pdf/section/IT_EN_C2_1.pdf
“Education in Italy”,
39
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Education_in_Italy
-23-
that there was an insufficient number of schools and teachers to meet a larger school population. In 1876,
40
the Coppino law made education free and compulsory for children between the ages of six and nine.
Beatrice attended school until she reached the age of nine and completed the fifth grade. This so-called
elementary education included reading the works of Dante Alighieri as required by law.
The law was quite successful in promoting the education of the middle class but seems to have
41
failed in the rural and southern areas as children often were not sent to school. In addition, the country lost
the use of its existing school system. Still smarting from the loss of its territory, and opposed to the whole
notion of liberalism and its concomitant, the liberty of the individual, the Catholic Church demurred at the
spread of lay education as a possible threat to the faith, especially as the Coppino Law abolished
compulsory religious teaching in elementary schools. Correspondingly, the Italian government enacted
42
policies designed to reduce the influence of the Catholic Church and made it illegal for any prelate, or
religious person of any sort, to teach. Consequently, many children in the south, for which the Church and
its clergy were the only source of schooling, though certainly limited, were denied an education. The rate of
children enrolled in primary education would reach 90% only after 70 years and the illiteracy rate, which
was near 80% in 1861, took more than 50 years to halve.
43
Beatrice achieved a small degree of education because her father and mother encouraged her and
allowed her to attend school, and the comune di Popoli provided the school and teachers, a relatively
progressive policy in a rural and isolated region.
It is unlikely that Beatrice was aware of the political concerns and conflicts of policy regarding the
education of Italians during this period. The liberal leaders of the new Italian state wanted educational
institutions to educate the populace not only to provide more skilled workers, but to engender feelings of
nationalism and patriotism. Italy was a new nation if not a new country; most people identified only with
their village or town, not the new notion of ‘Italy.’ As stated by the Italian statesman [Massimo Taparelli,
marquis] d'Azeglio (1798–1866) after Unification: "We have made Italy. Now we must make Italians.”
Therefore the Coppino Law included a provision entitled First Notions on the Duties of Men and Citizens
44
that defined the content of education.
Return to Naples
Beatrice must have concluded her sojourn with a sad smile: so many wonderful memories in this
little town. Now it was time to move on; she had to return to Naples to relive the next chapter in her life.
Smith, Denis Mack, Italy: A Modern History, The University of Michigan Press, Ann Arbor, 1959, p.55.
40
Cowen, Robert, International handbook of comparative education, Part 1,p.201.
41
Smith, p.114.
42
“Education in Italy”.
43
Cowen, p.201.
44
-24-
*****
Records in Italy
As mentioned in the introduction, the records that I examined were photocopied and put on microfilm
by the Mormon church. The photocopies of the register for Popoli were taken in the early 1980s.
As I perused the records of the Registri dello stato civile, 1809-1910 for the comune di Popoli, I came to
appreciate this record-keeping system in a country not known for its efficiency. By year, there are separate
records of:
• Birth (atto di nascita)
• Marriage (atto di matrimonio),
• Proclamation, allegations, or banns [notificazioni, pubblicazioni, memorandum]: These notifications
were made a few weeks before a couple planned to marry. The couple may have been required to
announce their intended marriage to give members of the community an opportunity to raise any
objections to the marriage.
45
• Supporting documents [processetti or allegati]. These documents were often filed by the bride and
groom in support of their intent or “solemn promise” to marry. Often these were copies of the
46
birth records of the bride and groom, and the birth and death records of their parents.
• Death (atto di morte)
Since divorce was illegal in Italy prior to 1970, there were no records of divorce.
In some instances, I even found notations of the marriage of a man and a woman in the margin of their
birth records, even when they married in another city, and sometimes even in another country. The marriage to
Ildebrando Paolini is record on the birth record of Beatrice (see photo image).
Apparently this record-keeping system was quite uniform throughout Italy, though certainly with
exceptions, and I discovered that it originated with the conquest of Italy by Napoleon Bonaparte in 1796-1799.
Napoleon abolished the feudalistic fiefdoms and created two kingdoms: the Kingdom of Italy in the north with
himself as king; and the Kingdom of Naples in the south, which by tradition included the region of Abruzzo.
Napoleon introduced centralized fiscal and administrative systems that brought Italy into the 19
th
century. Most relevant for genealogical purposes, he introduced civil record-keeping; prior to that time, vital
records were maintained by the Church.
Napoleon’s purpose was not to bring progressive government to the people of Italy as an end in itself,
but to enable him to draft Italian men for his army and to increase public revenue by making tax collection more
Research Outline: Italy, Family History Library, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, Salt
45
Lake City, Utah, 1999, p.17.
Ibid.
46
-25-
effective and efficient. These two goals–those of all empires–were to support his wars of conquest and
aggrandizement.
47
After Napoleon's defeat in 1815, many areas discontinued civil registration, but in southern Italy, the
towns and provinces continued to keep civil registration records: Regno di Napoli (comprising most of southern
Italy from Napoli and Campania down to Calabria and Puglia), Toscana, and the Abruzzo region. Thus the registri
for Popoli has records dating from 1809.
Two sets of records were maintained: the original by the town, and a copy sent to, and filed by the
provincial capital. For Popoli, the regional capital was L’Aquila, but then changed to the newly created province
of Pescara in 1927.
Italian civil registration resumed throughout the country when Italy became a unified country, starting in
1860.
*****
Birth Record of Maria Beatrice Del Grande (page 1 of 2)
Registri dell stato civile 1809-1910
Davis, John A., ed., Italy in the Nineteenth Century 1796-1900, The Short Oxford History of Italy,
47
Oxford University Press, 2000, p.35.
-26-
-27-
Chapter 2
Ildebrando Alfredo Paolini
Ildebrando Alfredo Paolini was a close friend of the Del Grande family, and he frequented their
home. Perhaps he worked as a tailor in Don Francesco’s shop. Beatrice said that she sat on his lap as a
child as he was eleven years her senior. On May 1, 1897, they were married in Naples. She was
48
seventeen years of age and he was twenty-nine.
Following the custom of the time, Beatrice, as the oldest, was the first daughter of the family to
marry. It is not known whether or not the marriage was arranged, but more probably it was encouraged by
her parents though not for the purpose of advancing the family fortune or social prestige. Ildebrando
Alfredo probably brought little to the table and certainly no family legacy.
It was family legend that Alfredo was born in the Piedmont–the northeast portion of Italy; and that
49
he was a soldier in the Italian Army. This version of his background was related by Beatrice and by her son,
Attilio (Otto) Paolini, my father. Whether or not they were aware of his actual origin is not known. His atto
di nascita (record of birth) reveals his true origin:
- Copy of birth declaration of Alighieri Ildebrando, 1867 21 december - act no. 250 - Complete
transcription: "before us Mancini Ciro mayor, appeared Camillo di Felice of late Antonio, 44,
farmer domiciled in Popoli who declared that on 21 december year 1867, at nine hours, alone, he
found in the street called Madonna delle Grazie an infant enveloped in white cotton bands, that
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he shows us. After examining the baby, we acknowledged he was alive, male, approximately 2
days old, with no special marks on himself. So we delivered the baby to the Commissioner of
Foundlings, and gave to the baby the name of Ildebrando and the surname Alighieri "-- to the left
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side [in the margin] is the registration of marriage: on 1 may 1897 in Napoli he married Del
Grande Maria Beatrice act n. 46 - transcription tribunal of Sulmona 6 Sept 1898
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-MR #46 dated 24 MAY 1897, S.Lorenzo District, Naples: Ildebrando Paolini age 30, born in Popoli,
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resident in Naples on Vico Francesco Del Giudice, son of unknown father and of Angiola Paolini, MARRIES
Maria Beatrice Del Grande age 18, born in Popoli, daughter of Francesco Paolo Del Grande and of Gemma
Castricone. 2. I also conducted a search of the church marriage records at the Archdiocese of Naples. I
checked marriages from 1896 to 1898 but found no church marriage record for Ildebrando. This could mean
that they didn't marry in church at all, or that they didn't marry in a church in Naples.
E-mail from genealogical researcher Joe de Simone in Quadrelle, Italy, March 15, 2007.
His birth record and all subsequent records found in Italy refer to him as Ildebrando. While some
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have thought Alfredo to be his middle name, it is more likely that he adopted it and thus it is a nickname.
The street name no longer exists but it was probably near the church of the same name.
50
Alighieri is the surname of the famous Italian poet, Dante Alighieri.
51
E-mail from Pierangela Badia, genealogical researcher in L'Aquila, Abruzzo, Italy; sent February 23,
52
2007 2:42 pm. Attached was a photographic image in .jpg format of the atto di nascita.
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One wonders whether a child ‘found’ in the street
in the morning in December in the Abruzzo would be
alive. A more probable scenario is that the farmer,
Camillo di Felice, was given the baby by the mother so as
to avoid the stigma of an unmarried mother and/or to
have him placed in an orphanage because she could not
care for the him.
Since Beatrice married Alfredo Paolini, there had
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to be a record of a name change as Alfredo would have
had to produce a birth record to the civil authorities for
his marriage. Such a record was found through an inquiry
to the Comune di Popoli which revealed a happy
resolution:
Pag. 2
(witness).. eligible under the law, Nicola Rico, son of Francesco, tailor, and Francesco Rico, son
of Nicola, shoemaker, both born and living in Popoli, by me notary personally known; appeared
before me Angiola Paolini, embroiderer, daughter of the late Cassiodoro, born and resident in
Popoli, by me notary personally known. The same person has declared that on 21st of December
1867 gave birth to a boy, who was presented to the bailiff of the civil status in Popoli by Camillo
di Felice, son of the late Antonio from Popoli, on 22nd of that month and year at 6:00 p.m. and
registered in the register of births in the serial number 250, to whom was given the name of
Ildebrando and the surname of Alighieri. The same Paolini stated that really the afore-said
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Ildebrando Alighieri was born from herself, so she kept him always with her and took care and
felt responsible of his education, and by this Act she recognizes him as a real son. As a result of
this recognition the afore-said Ildebrando, just Article 185 of the Civil Code in force, will assume
the name of the Paolini's family, called by the name of Ildebrando and with the surname of
Paolini. This was stated and accepted by Angiola Paolini. From that it has been conceived the
present act that is undersigned by me notary and the witnesses but not by (Mrs) Paolini, having
declared does not know how to write. Made and received by me, …...
Verified in this day 2nd of September 1884
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Chiesa Madonna della Grazia
A notation of the marriage was recorded the Registri dello stato civile on the birth record of Beatrice
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Del Grande in both Sulmona, then the administrative district, and in Popoli. Two inquiries were made of the
parish of San Lorenzo Martire in Popoli as to the existence of a marriage in the church; no such record was
found by the parish priest.
In the book entitled, The Normans in Sicily by John Norwich (who also wrote A Short History of
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Byzantium), mention is made of an Archdeacon Hildebrand, who later became Pope Gregory VII. A footnote
states: “Hildebrand, or Hildeprand, was a common Lombard name. The Piedmont is adjacent to Lombardy.
From the website “Behind the Name: the etymology and history of first names” Hildebrand is German
meaning "battle sword" from Germanic hild "battle" combined with brand "sword".
Copy of acts sent by Dott. Paolo Muzi, Director of the Ministero per I Benie Le Attivita Cultural,
55
Archivio Di Stato Di Pescara, June 5, 2009; translated by Prof. Gesualdo Carozza.
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In short, she states that “she kept him always with her” and “felt responsible for his education.”
How she did this is unknown; perhaps a relative such an uncle or aunt were appointed guardian; or Angiola
herself had been appointed as his “foster” mother. In any case, he took the surname of his mother: Paolini.
In Alfredo’s application for a passport, his father is cited as “ignoto”: unknown. While his mother
may have told him the identity of his father, it is concluded that his father never publically acknowledge
paternity and probably never provided any financial support.
An illegitimate child at this period of time and place bore a stigma that was impossible to erase,
even though the child was completely innocent of any misdeed. An illegitimate child was not recognized as
a fully constituted member of society. To this injustice was added the lack of recognition by his father
which also must have been interpreted by Alfredo as a lack of worth and honor. The consequence seems to
have been a heighten sensitivity to slights and indignities, however unintended.
No records have been located to determine whether or not he was a ward of the Commissioner of
Foundlings.
Since every male is registered for the draft, there had to be a lista di leva, or record of
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conscription. After several inquiries to various state archives, Alfredo’s conscription record was provided
by the Archivio di Stato di L’Aquila. Alfredo was conscripted in Popoli, probably between the age of
eighteen and twenty or about the year 1885. His occupation is given as falegname or carpenter. A written
entry states: “Declared in review or special inspection in the nearby [civil] District of Aquila to be lacking/failing in his
measurements of height and chest which were 1,69(80),” that is, height 5' 5" (chest: 31"). Thus he appears to have
been rejected for service for his lack of physical stature and/or, though unstated, because he may have been
the sole support for his mother who did not remarry.
Sometime before the birth of their first child, Beatrice and Alfredo moved to Naples and opened a
tailor shop, probably in late 1896. To initiate this new enterprise in a large city would have required
courage and possibly some assistance. If Alfredo had been a tailor in the employ of Don Francesco, it is
possible that he, along with Beatrice, had learned the trade and business well enough to open a shop. He
may have had some savings that served as capital to start the enterprise. More than likely, they had some
financial assistance from Don Francesco.
For Beatrice, age seventeen, adulthood was reached quite early and in a very short interval of time.
“Conscription of all males at the age of eighteen was instituted in 1865. Every Italian
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male—even those obviously disabled—was and still is required to report to the draft board for a
physical exam. Therefore, draft records list every native Italian male who was born from about
1850 to the present and do who did not leave the country at an early age.” Italy Military Records,
https://wiki.familysearch.org/en/Italy_Military_Records
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Chapter 3
The Emigration of the Del Grande Family
“Barbers and tailors we raise chiefly for export.”
Giuseppe Marotta, Return to Naples
In 1886, Don Francesco emigrated from Italy to the United States; two years later, his family and his
aunt, Arcangela Del Grande, followed him.
The conditions that caused the massive and widespread emigration from Italy around the turn of
the 20 century have been widely studied and are generally known: corruption, oppression, poverty, and
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ignorance, with no better prospect for the future. These studies have focused on the effect of these factors
on the largest and lowest classes of the socio-economic scale: the contandini (farmers/ cultivators) and the
braccianti (laborers).
The Del Grande were not of these classes. Don Francesco was an artisan and a merchant, a member
of the piccolo borghese. It is likely that until the time of his decision to emigrate, he was making a decent
living, certainly better than his countrymen working in the fields. What was the change that affected his
class or his profession that made him decide to emigrate?
Many studies identify causes irrespective of their locality, leaving the impression that these causes
prevailed throughout the Italian peninsula, when very often they were prevalent in only one or two regions.
What conditions peculiar to the region of Abruzzo and the Comune di Popoli changed that affected Don
Francesco and his family?
At the time the Del Grande lived in Italy, and until the industrialization started in the 1960's, Italy
has been mainly an agrarian country. The productivity of agriculture affected all classes of Italian society,
and so it must have affected the Del Grande, but how it was manifested in Popoli and how did it come to
affect the Del Grande?
The Del Grande family were tailors of women’s clothes, specializing in women’s riding habits. Their
clientele had to be women of the middle class and the aristocracy. It is likely that this clientele either
decreased in number and/or their wealth so that they could no longer afford the luxury of riding horses for
pleasure.
Ideally, a measure of wealth, such as annual income or size of property by periods of time for
individuals or families in the area of Popoli would provide the means of analysis that would determine
whether or not the clientele of the Del Grande were affected. As of this writing, no such data has been
found; however, one study was found that characterizes the structure of land ownership and labor relations
by areas and over time with a description of the consequences for the aristocracy and middle class.
Interestingly enough, this article was based principally on a study made in Italy in 1953 by an Australian,
J.S. McDonald of the Australian National University, Canberra.
57
McDonald, J.S., “Some Socio-economic Emigration Differentials in Rural Italy, 1902-1913, Economic
57
Development and Cultural Change, Vol. 7, Issue 1, October 1958, pp. 55-72.
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Popoli
The author of this photographs is "
RaBoe/Wikipedia” The original image is provided
at:
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Popoli
_18_(RaBoe).jpg. A copy of, or the Uniform
Resource Identifier is at:
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0
/de/legalcode
Courtesy of Viaggio in Abruzzo
http://www.viaggioinabruzzo.it/
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McDonald studied sixteen regions of Italy and then combined them into four groups or territories,
one he called “The Deep South, namely, Abruzzi-Molise, Basilicata, Calabria, and Sicily’s east, north, and
west coasts.”
In the Deep South, he found a somewhat even distribution of sizes of land holdings, and
consequently there was a somewhat even distribution of wealth, that is, not a great deal of difference
between rich and poor. This was a consequence of policies instituted by the government after Italian
Unification (1860-1870). Large landholdings of families and the Church were confiscated and distributed
to the peasants. In many territories, these new, small landholders lost their land as they could not pay their
property taxes; the old, wealthy landholders paid the back taxes or purchased the land and increased their
landholdings. This occurred in all territories but to a lesser extent in the Deep South. In addition, members
of the growing middle class residing in the city purchased land as an investment.
Both the old wealthy landholders–who often weren’t very wealthy–and the nouveau riche– leased
their land to contractors or middlemen who in turn hired giornalieri (day-laborers) or sharecroppers to
cultivate the farmland. Both owner and contractor looked for an immediate return on their investment, and
so the contracts were annual–an insufficient period of time for a contractor, cultivator, or sharecropper to
invest time and money in more productive technology. The owners provided little working capital and
practically no managerial direction. Consequently, yields and income were low but apparently acceptable.
Having little interest in the business and the land, most landowners moved to the cities. They were
content to earn a meager income with a safe investment in land rather than risk their capital on agricultural
enterprise. In short, the Deep South lacked entrepreneurs, not capital. McDonald states:
The non-cultivators generally lounged in the piazza, operated small shops, took white-collar
jobs, or moved to the cities.
Many small rentiers moved to Naples or secured office jobs with the civil service throughout
Italy.
It is concluded that the Del Grande family lost its clientele in that they declined in wealth and/or the
moved to the city. This change may also explain why Beatrice and Alfredo relocated to Naples and opened a
shop there rather than remain in Popoli.
An analysis of emigration usually considers causes that “pushed” out émigrés and those that
“pulled” or attracted them to the receiving country. The attractions of America were well known by
Italians, not only from newspaper reports but from friends and relatives that had immigrated and then
returned, either for a visit or for repatriation.
Given the many persons and families that emigrated from Popoli and the Abruzzo, it is quite likely
that the Del Grande learned of the opportunities in America. As listed on many ship’s manifest, relatives of
Gemma–a Castricone–had emigrated and settled in Utica, New York. Another tailor in Popoli, Achille
Ciferni, proceeded Don Francesco in immigrating to America in 1893 and settling in Utica as well. The way
to America was prepared for the Del Grande family. Still, the decision must have been made with much
trepidation.
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The thought of emigration must have weighed heavily on Don Francesco. To leave Popoli meant
leaving friends and extended family–brothers and sisters, aunts, uncles, and grandparents. For Don
Francesco, it meant leaving all that he had invested in his home, his business and his town. He was a
respected member of the community with an established business and a clientele even though diminished.
As an immigrant, he would have to start anew at the bottom rung of the ladder. Perhaps more painful, he
would be leaving his homeland. However poor, however corrupt, however plagued by catastrophes, Italy
was still a glorious land with a rich cultural heritage that made every Italian proud.
It would mean that he would no longer
wake to the bells of the churches as they sounded
the call to prayer throughout the town. He would
no longer see the surrounding mountains in their
various colors of the season nor see the hues of
the Castello di Popoli depending upon the angle of
the sun. He would no longer attend the church in
which he and his wife were married and their
children baptized as had his parents and
grandparents before him.
He would no longer spend a few minutes talking
to the Ottos–those men in their eighties–as they sat on the
benches in the piazza to play cards or simply doze in the
sun. He would no longer hear the boys and girls shout
and laugh as they poured out of the school each day. He
would no longer walk the vicoli and le scale in pietre
which he knew by heart.
All these sights and sounds would only be a memory.
Courtesy of Vulk.an
www.flickr.com/photos/vulkan/135299277/
Photo courtesy of Giovanni Lattanzi at
www.inabruzzo.it/fotoabruzzo
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Chapter 4
Life for the Paolini in Naples
The History of Naples
Greek settlers founded a city they called Parthenópç along a bay on the west side of the Italian
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peninsula in the 8 century BCE. Next to Parthenópç, they later they built a new city–a new polis or
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Neapolis; hence the Italian name of Napoli.
The city became the capital of the Angevin Dynasty. When overthrown, it became a possession of
the Spanish Empire during which time Spanish viceroys were installed to govern the city and southern
Italy, the most notable being “Pedro Álvarez de Toldedo, who was responsible for considerable social,
economic and urban progress in the city.” During this period Naples became the second largest city in
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Europe and a center of artistic creativity.
After a brief loss of control to the Habsburg Empire, the city returned to the rule and capital of the
Spanish Bourbons in 1738 under Charles VII. For a brief period, it was a republic when the pro-Republican
aristocracy revolted; however, it was overthrown by a counter-revolutionary religious army, and the
Bourbons were restored.
It again fell to Napoleon and was ruled by his brother-in-law Jochim Murat as the capital of the
Kingdom of Naples. Upon Napoleon’s defeat, it was returned to the Bourbons and the kingdoms of southern
Italy and Sicily were combined as the Kingdom of Two Sicilies and served as the capital.
Naples was a city with a little over a half a million population when Beatrice and Alfredo arrived
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in 1896. It was a city of great contrasts of rich and poor. The palaces of the rich and powerful were
magnificent. There were three large castles which probably could be seen from almost anywhere: Castello
Sant'Elmo, Castello dell'Ovo, Castello Nuovo. Looking down and south from Piazza Dante, one would see the
port and the Bay of Naples; looking up and north, one would see the Palazzo Capodimonte (the summer
residence and hunting lodge of the kings of the Two Sicilies). Downtown, one could walk in the grand
Piazza Plebiscito, past the Palazzo Reale (one of the four residences used by the Bourbon Kings) and the
church of San Francesco di Paola. A few steps away was the Galleria Umberto I, a public shopping gallery
recently built (1887-1891) and across the street was the Reale Teatro di San Carlo.
Parthenópe- was named after the siren in Greek mythology said to have washed ashore at Megaride
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after throwing herself into the sea when she failed to bewitch Ulysses with her song.
59
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Naples#Quarters
“Largest Cities of the Earth” (includes the population of Naples in 1899: 544,057), The World
60
Almanac and Encyclopedia, Press Publishing Co., Pulitzer Building, New York, 1901, p.384.
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Napoli
Palazzo Reale
Castel Nuovo
Piazza Dante circa 1956
Palazzo Capodimonte
Port’Alba Castello dell'Ovo
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Naples about 1900
Photo courtesy of Mary Melfi at http://www.italyrevisited.org/
Bread Vendor
Provision Store
Washing Clothes
Tenements
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Spaccanopoli
In contrast to the grandiose downtown, the area in which the Paolini family resided was the historic
center of Naples, where the pattern of the streets still reflects the Greco-Roman city of Neapolis. The main
street was, and is, Spaccanapoli, literally translated as the "Naples splitter". The street is relatively wide, as
it was the lower decumanus –the main east-west avenue of the city in its Roman period. When viewed
61
from on-high, as from Castello Sant’Elmo, the street seems to be a narrow chasm through the area. The
street also gives its name to this indistinctly defined area. It is a densely inhabited with apartment
building, churches, monasteries, convents, shops, piazzas, and fountains. With raised roll-up doors, the
shops spill their wares into the streets selling dolce and coffee, books, produce, jewelry, flowers, souvenirs,
Christmas and nativity scenes. Artisans work in their shops creating their wares, slowly shifting their
attention to attend to potential buyers. Men sit on stools and chairs planted outside their shops chatting
with neighbors and fellow-shopkeepers. Shoppers and tourist shuffle along the narrow streets as there are
no sidewalks.
Three of the four addresses of the Paolini family are within this area. As in Popoli, the addresses are
given in the birth records of their children plus a certificate from the city regarding Alfredo:
Children’s Names Date of Birth Address/Country
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Armando 15 Feb 1897 36 Via Salita Ventaglieri, [Avvocata quarter]
Adolfo (Adolph) 23 Feb 1899 6 Vico Francesco Del Giudice [San Lorenzo quarter]
Arturo (Arthur) 23 Dec 1900 29 Via Sapienza [San Lorenzo quarter]
Aldo 2 Feb 1902 29 Via Sapienza [San Lorenzo quarter]
Attilio 1904 died in infancy (about 6 months)
1906 2 Via Università [San Lorenzo quarter]
Amelia (Emily) 27 Oct 1906 Chicago, Illinois
Attilio (Otto) 31 July 1908 Chicago, Illinois
Donato 18 Jan 1910 Chicago, Illinois
Their first home was in the Avvocata (advocate or attorney) quarter and on a hill, hence the name
‘salita’ meaning ascent or climb (see map). Not far from Piazza Dante, it is a steep climb from downtown
but more easily reached by a funicular to Montesanto, built during the Paolini residency in Naples.
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In Roman city planning, a decumanus was an east-west-oriented road in a Roman city, castra
61
(military camp), or colonia. The main decumanus was the Decumanus Maximus.
As many immigrants to American in those days, foreign names were "Americanized", either because
62
non-Italians could not pronounce the foreign name and/or because the immigrant wanted to adopt a new
identity as an American. Adolfo and Arturo were Americanized to Adolph and Arthur, Amelia became Emily.
My father's name was Attilio but his family and friends called him "Ottie" (pronounced "Aha-tee) for short.
When he went to school, he gave the name of "Otto" as he didn't like "Attilio."
Naples has four funiculars. The Chiaia Funicular was built in 1889, followed within two years by the
63
Funicolare of Montesanto (Montesanto Funicular), and after some years by Central Funicular and Mergellina.
The most famous funicular in Naples was the Mount Vesuvius Funicular (1880–1944), the first railway track
in the world built on an active volcano, and destroyed various times by Vesuvius eruptions. It achieved
worldwide fame, in part, because the Neapolitan song Funiculì Funiculà was dedicated to it.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Funicular
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Napoli
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Napoli 2008
Spaccanapoli
Via Benedetto Croce
Via San Gregorio
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Adolfo was born at 6 Vico Francesco Del Guidice in the Quartiere San Lorenzo. Vico is short for vicolo
64
which means narrow street or alley, and indeed it is a
narrow street with almost no entrances to buildings nor
shops. At one end is the Campanile of Santa Maria
Maggiore della Pietrasanta, the bell tower of a church.
65
Due to the narrowness of the street, it is rather dark and
gloomy. The building is recessed with two entrances. It
may well have been their home but it is doubtful that it had
served as a tailor shop.
Arturo and Aldo were born at 29 Sapienza
(wisdom), about a block from their former residence at 6
Vico Francesco Del Guidice. The name maybe derived from
the fact that the Accademia di Bella Arti is about a hundred
meters to the west, and the Universitá digli Studi di Napoli
Federico II is about two blocks south.
66
When Beatrice returned in 1953, she said that she
found the building of the tailor shop in which the family
lived; she specifically said that she recognized the door
that they had installed. It was especially heavy with pretty
plate glass. Their business and living quarters were in the
same building. Most likely it is the building at 29 Sapienza as it has an enclosed courtyard with recesses that
are now used as individual garages for automobiles but which certainly could have functioned as small
shops.
Family and Business
When she was unmarried, Beatrice had to take care of her brothers and sisters which she seems to
have considered a demanding and unpleasant task; so much so that she vowed that she would never have
children, or at least no more than one. In the period of thirteen years, Beatrice had eight children.
Contrary to most men, especially in that period, Alfredo always wanted a daughter. Not only was he
disappointed at the birth of each of his five sons, he actually refused to look at them or speak to his wife for a
time. Beatrice had to endure this contemptible behavior despite the fact that she had extremely painful
childbirths as she was quite small (under 5 feet) and all her babies were large. My father Attilio weighed
over 12 pounds at birth!
Alfredo's mother Angiola, who went by the name Angelina, accompanied Beatrice and Alfredo’s
move to Naples and lived with them. Beatrice said that her mother-in-law had been a professional cook, but
did not mention where she had been employed. She commented that Angelina was able to take a freshly
Spaccanopoli circa 1900
A Roman Catholic cardinal (l (1647-1725).
64
The church was named after a holy stone (pietrasanta) that was said to grant indulgences when
65
kissed.
It was founded in 1224 and is the world's oldest state university; it is also one of the oldest
66
academic institutions in continuous operation. The university is named after its founder Frederick II, king of
the Holy Roman Empire.
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killed chicken and debone it, and then put the parts back in place to form a whole chicken, then decorate it to
make it an attractive dish on the table.
Apparently Alfredo’s mother suffered some form of mental debilitation as she was somewhat inept,
and Beatrice could never completely trust her with the children. Angelina did help with household chores,
and she also worked in the tailor shop; but Beatrice had to keep an eye on her as well as her four young sons,
and so it must have been stressful for her at times.
As mentioned above, children between the ages of six and nine were required to attend school. In
1903 and 1905, Armando and Adolfo probably attended school.
Evidently the tailoring business went well–at least for awhile--because Beatrice mentioned that they
had a couple of employees. As the shop of the Del Grande in Popoli, Alfredo and Beatrice were tailors for
women’s clothing, specializing in women’s riding habits. Thus their patrons were of the middle class and
aristocracy, who deemed it their privilege to pay for their purchases when it suited them and not the
shopkeeper. Knowing his place, and not willing to embarrass or demean himself, Alfredo refused to request
payment even when urged to do so by Beatrice. They had debts of wages, rent and materials plus income for
themselves to live; delay in payment often put them in a bind.
Alfredo seemed not to worry about these problems.
Apparently he enjoyed his status of ‘merchant tailor’ and owner.
As with many Italians, he was content to just get by and enjoy the
simple pleasures of life. For him, it was playing cards with his
friends, either in the piazza or at home. Social etiquette
demanded the serving of food and drink, to the annoyance of
Beatrice, who once remarked to one of his guests, “Just once I’d
like to dirty a plate at your house.”
A Night at the Opera
In spite of these aggravations, Beatrice loved life in
Naples. She attended operas at the famous Reale Teatro San
Carlo, enjoyed the many festivals and religious celebrations,
and had seafood dinner at restaurants on the docks of the Bay
of Naples. There was always some informal entertainment on
the beach. The famous tenor, Enrico Caruso (1873-1921),
started his career singing on the beach at Naples.
Beatrice liked to go to the opera and to go dancing.
Alfredo had no ability to dance and preferred to stay home
with his card-playing friends. One Sunday after church, she
passed the Reale Teatro San Carlo and bought two tickets to
the opera. She returned home, and laying one ticket on the
table, said to Alfredo, "I bought two tickets for the opera
tonight. Here is your ticket if you want to come. I’m going." In
those days, it was unthinkable for a woman to attend a social
function without an escort, and so Alfredo had no choice but to
attend.
Men playing cards in Naples
Phonograph Album
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Big-Time Players
As the cultural environment of Naples inculcated her love of classical music and opera, the political
culture must have influenced her orientation and attitudes as well. Politics in Naples, as in many large cities,
was a mixture of political ideas, political factions, and socio-economic groups. Naples added one that is less
often included: a criminal organization.
Naples was, and is, well-known for its criminal elements, which range from street urchins (scugnizzi)
and swindlers (imbroglione) to thieves (lazzaroni), and organized crime (the Neapolitan Mafia is called the
Camora). Beatrice never mentioned falling victim to these criminals when she lived in Italy, but she did
relate an amusing incident when she visited in 1953.
As she was walking, she spied a ring on the pavement, and as she approached it, a man came forth
and snatched up the ring. "Look what we found!" he exclaimed. “This is an expensive ring,
probably worth at least ^^^^ lire. Why don't you give me half as I'm sure that you can sell it for
more than twice that amount?" Beatrice smiled sweetly and replied, "They were trying to pull that
trick when I was here in 1906, and it was old then!"
One could outwit swindlers, parry street urchins, and ward off robbers, but Neapolitans could not,
and still, can not, avoid the Camorra. Many of their ‘enterprises’ pander to people’s foibles, such as, drug
67
trafficking, smuggling, bribery, prostitution, etc., but extortion takes money from any profitable business
enterprise, honest or otherwise. It may not make direct demands for cash but just impose the requirement
that materials be purchased from certain dealers which demand slightly higher prices due to an “excise tax.”
There are several historical versions as to how the Camorra came into existence. Suffice it to say that
in the period of Boubon rule in which there was some economic growth, albeit slow and lagging behind the
North, the lazzaroni seem to have become organized and earned money, not only from gambling and theft,
but also from extortion of goods arriving at the port and passing through the city gates–about 10 percent of
the value.
At this time, there was a great influx of people to Naples because it offered the possibility of work.
However the supply of workers greatly exceeded demand, and so there was very high unemployment and
impoverishment. This was a dangerous and threatening situation for the aristocracy, and so they employed
the Camorra as a means of suppressing potential mob violence which was for many of the populace was the
only way to express their discontent and/or seek a living.
While the camorristi were of the poor, they became tools of the Bourbon [Ferdinand II] ruling class,
and were used to betray revolutionaries and liberal Republicans in the establishment of a Republic (23
January 1799 to 13 June 1799). Even after Italian Unification, the new ruling circle of middle class business
owners and professionals turned to the Camorra to maintain ‘law and order.’ This enabled the camorristi to
learn the levers of political power, in other words, more and more, they extorted money from persons
wanting governmental actions, such as contracts, building permits, etc.
“Their position as policemen naturally gave them greater freedom to manoeuver and they quickly
moved into the contraband industry, not only extorting money from those already smuggling
goods, but also obliging shopkeepers and merchants to take smuggled instead of official goods.
The description of the affect of the Camorra on Naples in the 19 and early 20 century is taken
th th 67
largely from The Camorra, written by Tom Behan, Routledge, New York, 1996.
-52-
Once they had paid off the Camorra, traders found that they were still paying far less than the
official price.”
68
In the post-Unification period, the Camorra infiltrated many sectors of Neapolitan society. The city’s
economy became increasingly dominated by council contracts, especially construction projects for
rebuilding many of the city’s oldest areas.
69
During this same period, the policies and programs based upon socialism were transforming the
political discourse, and unions were organizing workers of trade and industry:
“The socialist tradition in Naples goes back as far as December 1868, when a branch of Karl
Marx’s First International was founded, with a reported membership in August 1872 of 800-1,000
members.”
70
The Camorra was often used to breakup strikes and protest marches.
Confronting the socialists were not only the owners of companies, governmental leaders, and the
Camorra, the Roman Catholic Church was opposed to most of the ‘-isms’ of the day and was particularly
71
scornful of socialism. “In 1904 the Camorra, led by a priest named Vito Vittozzi, managed to stop the
election of socialist deputy Ettore Ciccotti in the Vicaria area. A few years later Ciccotti wrote that the
campaign: ‘had a clear aim... of breaking the working-class movement and the Trades Council in Naples.’”
72
This conflict among the government, the owners of businesses, the Church and the unions must have
formed Beatrice’s own values and judgments that would be the basis for her own involvement in the major
issue of her time in America. Chicago and Naples had much in common.
Behan, p.18.
68
Ibid, p.20.
69
Ibid, p.22.
70
From the end of the 18th century the Papacy found itself in conflict with the liberal philosophical,
71
political, and economic theories flowing from the Enlightenment, the French Revolution, and the industrial
revolution, which all emphasized freedom from restraint. A series of popes from Pius VI (1775-1799) to Pius
IX (1846-1878) challenged what they perceived as liberalism's dogma of human freedom and its assumption
that society and state existed for the self-fulfillment on the individual. What the liberals praised as self
maximization, the Papacy perceived as selfishness and license.
Coppa, Frank J., "From Liberalism to Fascism: The Church-State Conflict over Italy's Schools," The History
Teacher, Volume 28, Number 2, February 1995, p. 135. http://www.jstor.org/stable/494482
“In December 1864 the papal encyclical Quanta cura appeared, together with a Syllabus of Errors. Among the
eighty propositions advanced, number 79 asserted that freedom of discussion corrupted the soul, and number
32 said that the clergy had a natural right to avoid military service. Religious toleration, freedom of
conscience and the press, the validity of secularist legislation, were all challenged along with socialism,
rationalism, and Bible societies, and it was denied that the Pope could or should come to terms with
“progress, liberalism, and modern civilization.” [Smith, Denis Mack, Italy: A Modern History, The University of
Michigan Press, Ann Arbor, 1959, p.90-91]
Behan,p.23.
72
-53-
Napoli
Castello Sant'Elmo
Napoli-Guglia
dell'Immacolata
Reale Teatro San Carlo
View of Mount Vesuvius from Castello Sant'Elmo
View from Castello Sant'Elmo
Cloister of San Gregorio Armeno
Church of Gesu Nuovo
-54-
-55-
Chapter 5
Del Grande in Utica, New York
Don Francesco Emigrates
Francesco Paolo Del Grande sailed from the Port of Naples on the SS Italia about April 25, 1896. He
was good to himself, for rather than steerage, he booked himself on the upperdeck, which probably meant a
second class cabin. He arrived at the Port of New York on May 7, 1896 and probably proceeded directly
73, 74
to Utica, New York.
The City of Utica, New York
The city of Utica was built near the Mohawk
River in upstate New York. The river was a major
transportation route before 1800 that enabled the
transport of agricultural products to Albany on the
Hudson River, and then on to New York City. In 1825,
the Erie Canal was completed which enabled
commerce to extend across the state to the city of
Buffalo on Lake Erie. It then grew into a major textile
75
manufacturing center and later a major player in the
tool and die industry, which thrived in the late 19th
and early 20th centuries. In the late 1800s and early
1900s, the city grew because of the expansion of the railroads. With the great influx of immigrants in the
late 1800s, many Italians labored in railroad construction and brickyards. It was a boomtown with a
76
sizeable Italian colony when Don Francesco arrived in 1896. By 1900, the population of Utica was 56,383
making it the 66 largest city in the United States with an Italian population of 1,661 or about 3%.
th 77 78
A Busy Corner, Utica, New York (circa 1900)
Source Citation: Year: 1896; Microfilm Serial: M237; Microfilm Roll: M237_658; Line: 8; Page
73
Number: 6. Ancestry.com. New York Passenger Lists, 1820-1957 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA:
Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2010.
He is not known to have traveled with anyone, but an Ang. (probably Angelo) Zaino is listed on the
74
manifest, and Zaino is a common name in Popoli, and the name Zaino is still found in the Utica telephone
directory.
Gersmehl, Carol A., New York: Transportation Connectins Along the Erie Canal Route, Prepared by:
75
National Council for Geographic Education (NCGE), 2009.
http://www.ncge.org/files/public/NY-TeacherGuide.pdf
Schiro, George, Americans by choice : history of the Italians in Utica, Arno Press, 1975 [c1940]
76
‘U.S. Census Bureau, Statistical Abstract of the United States: 2003'
77
http://www.census.gov/statab/hist/HS-07.pdf
Briggs, John W., An Italian Passage: Immigrants to Three American Cities, 1890-1930, Yale University
78
Press, New Haven, 1978., p. 178.
-56-
Socio-Economic Patterns of Italian Immigrants
Much of the socio-economic history in this section is taken from a study entitled, An Italian Passage:
Immigrants to Three American Cities, 1890-1930, written by John W. Briggs. One of the cities studied was
Utica, New York.
The settlement of Italians in Utica went through three stages in the period of 1890-1930: A
settlement of largely unmarried male laborers, a colony of families with young children, and a finally a
mature community of single men and women immigrants, families and second-generation adults.
79
“Mens’ clothing was an important industry...” in Utica, offering both skilled and semi-skilled jobs;
80
quoting Briggs:
Textile production was the leading industry of Utica, and a number of manufacturers and
wholesalers of ready-made clothing were located within the district along Lower Genesee Street
during the nineteenth century.
81
Combination artisan-merchants included seven custom tailor shops...
82
Obviously Don Francesco saw the opportunities for himself and his family. In a little less than two
years after his immigration, he filed his Declaration of Intention ("first papers") on February 8, 1898 to
become a naturalized citizen. The decision was made three months before the arrival of his wife and
83
children. Clearly, he was not a “bird of passage” ; his immigration to America was permanent.
84 85
Briggs, An Italian Passage, p. 187.
79
Briggs, An Italian Passage, p. 113.
80
“Lower Genesee Street Historic District”, The Lower Genesee Street Historic District was listed on
81
the National Register of Historic Places in 1983. Portions of the text were adapted from a copy of the original
nomination document: John Harwood, New York State Division for Historic Preservation, Lower Genesee
Street Historic District, nomination document, 1982, National Park Service, National Register of Historic
Places, Washington, D.C.
Briggs, An Italian Passage, p. 166.
82
Petition for Naturalization, and Oath of Renunciation and Allegiance of Francesco Paolo Del Grande,
83
September 26, 1906.
Historians use the phrase "birds of passage" to describe immigrants who never intended to make
84
the United States their permanent home. Unable to earn a livelihood in their home countries, they were
migratory laborers. Most were young men in their teens and twenties, who planned to work, save money, and
return home. “Italian Immigration,”
http://www.digitalhistory.uh.edu/historyonline/italian_immigration.cfm
Overall, 20 to 30 percent of Italian immigrants returned to Italy permanently. Many Italians
85
emigrated to America hoping to earn enough money to return to Italy and buy land. Among immigrant groups
to America, Italians had the highest rate of returning to the old country.
http://wapedia.mobi/en/Italian_American
-57-
Manifest of the SS Italia
listing
Franc. Del Grande
-58-
Manifest of the Tartar Prince
April 3, 1898
Listing Gemma Castricone and Family
-59-
The Family Follows
Gemma and the children arrived April 3, 1898 along with Don Francesco’s aunt, Arcangela Del Grande.
[Her story is described in a separate chapter.] Their pattern of moving frequently in Popoli is repeated in Utica:
439 Bleecker Street [according to the manifest of Gemma and the family; 17 March 1898]
28 Second Street [according to the city directories of 1897 and 1899]
59 Jay Street [according to the 1900 census: 13 June 1900]
86
32 Devereux Street [according to the birth record of Donato Del Grande: January 22, 1902]
63 Catherine Street [according to the marriage record of a daughter: April 3, 1903]
The first address is characterized as an “Italian Boarding House” as listed in the Utica City Directory for
the year 1898. It is probable that Don Francesco resided in the boarding house, but rented an apartment or
87
house just prior to the arrival of his family.
All these residences are in what is now the old section of Utica, New York. According to the ethnicity of
the names on the 1900 census sheets for this area, it was populated mainly by Italian, Irish, and German.
While Don Francesco was in America, and Gemma and the children were still in Italy, their infant
daughter Italia died. She had been born the day after he sailed from Naples. He never saw her. As is a common
Italian custom, they gave the same name–Italia with the middle name of Arminda -- to their next daughter
88 89
who was born March 1, 1899 in Utica. It is generally reported that her family called her Lily while her
biography records her name as Lillian.
Preferred Positions
While Don Francesco stated that his occupation was a tailor in the 1900 census, there is no indication of
where or how he was employed, that is, whether he worked as a merchant tailor, a tailor in a clothing store, a
factory, etc. It is most likely that he worked in a garment factory for at least the first few years until he could
establish his reputation as a skilled craftsman.
Somewhat surprisingly, Italian immigrants were able to advance quite quickly either into supervisory
positions within large companies or to establish their own companies:
The census indicates that the house was rented.
86
Utica City Directory, 1898, The Utica Directory Publishing Company, Utica, New York, p. 92.
87
Her name is recorded in the 1900 census as Italy.
88
This name is very probably a misinterpretation or mis-spelling by the recorder as I have never seen
89
it listed in the Registri dello stato civile nor in any on-line listing of Italian names.
-60-
The prominence of the textile and clothing industries in Utica attracted skilled Italian tailors,
some of whom moved into entrepreneurial roles. These independent shops ranged from one-person
organizations which served a neighborhood clientele, to the sizable establishment of Vito Pietrafessa
in the central business district of the city. Pietrafessa came to Utica in 1899 to serve as a
superintendent in a large American firm, which by 1902 employed more than 300 Italian tailors.
90
Utica, ..., had a prominent contingent of tailors who provided important leadership in the early
organization of the [Italian] colony.
91
Briggs makes an interesting observation though he provides no hard evidence:
To be sure, Italians served as foremen and in similar supervisory positions in the textile and
construction industries, but they much preferred to be independent shop owners or contractors.
92
This characterization was also made by an Italian author, Giuseppe Marotta, in describing artisans in Naples:
Naples is poor in industries and rich in sun. It is a city of craftsmen, who have no need for
other quarters than a sunlit balcony large enough to hold themselves and their tools, their songs, their
debts and their ineradicable melancholy.
93
Briggs continues: “Striving for success through moving up in the emerging corporate and bureaucratic
organizations of modern industrial society was delayed for Italians by this early reinforcement of more
traditional routes to status and power.”
94
The 1900 census lists no occupation for Gemma Castricone but it was common for wives to contribute
to the household income by taking in laundry or helping their husbands run a small business or boarding house.
If Don Francesco was a ‘merchant tailor,’ she may well have assisted him in this enterprise. In all probability,
she was the primary caretaker of four children under the age of twelve.
The Del Grande children seemed to have adapted well and been received by the community, for their
daughter Gilda, now working as a tailoress and age 22, married Domenico Del Vecchio, a foreman in the Curlee
Clothing Company, in 1902. A year later, Angiolina, now probably called Angeline, and also a tailoress, married
Carmino Alfano, on April 3, 1903. Both men were Italian immigrants who had arrived in the prior ten years.
The extract of the birth record of the Del Vecchio’s first child, Francesco, born June 26, 1902, shows the
same address as the residence of Angiolina when she married; thus the Del Vecchio and the Del Grande were
living in the same building though whether they shared the same living quarters is unknown.
Briggs, An Italian Passage, 166-167.
90
Briggs, An Italian Passage, p. 113.
91
Briggs, An Italian Passage,, p. 190.
92
Marotta, Giuseppe, Return to Naples, E.P. Duton & Co., 1951.
93
Briggs, An Italian Passage, p. 190.
94
-61-
Map of Utica (2010)
-62-
1900 Census Sheet
for the
Del Grande Family
-63-
Italian-American Colonies: Community or Amoral Familism
Several researchers, both Italian and American, have proposed explanations for the poverty of
Italians in Italy, particularly for the period after Italian Unification from 1860 to the beginning of the Great
War in 1914. Among the explanations was the notion that Italians, especially the poor and uneducated
contandini and braccianti, held firm to the guiding principle of La famiglia sopra tutto–the family above all.
Rather than being civic-minded and working for the benefit of one’s community, region, nation, etc., it was
believed that Italians evaluated any prospective action or policy solely in terms of its benefits or liabilities
for one’s family. This characteristic was thought to persist in the Italians that immigrated. This hypothesis
95
of immigrant behavior is often held by some who view the immigrants of today, primarily of Latinos, as
having the same attitude, commonly labeled amoral familism.
96
While not explaining the condition of poverty in villages in southern Italy, John W. Briggs presents
97
evidence that Italian villagers did not act solely for the benefit of their family, and that they did cooperate
among themselves to improve their condition and the future of their children. He identifies the types of
people who did cooperate and then documents the extent to which Italians in Italy cooperated in supporting
the establishment of schools for their children and expressing concern for attendance; he also identifies the
existence of self-help societies. He examines the extent of cooperation within Italian enclaves in America
and the extent of involvement in the wider community. In short, he provides evidence that Italians, both in
Italy and America, were active in civic affairs.
He also identifies the socio-economic structure from when these immigrants came and their socio-
economic classification. The following presents a partial picture of his findings for Utica, New York.
First, it was found that, as described in chapter 3, the type of property distribution explained or
determined the rates of emigration:
In areas of mixed property distribution, with a large proportion of small landholders and with
tenants participating through share-farming contracts in the capitalization and management of the
enterprise, rates of emigration were high [such as the Abruzzo]. In areas of highly concentrated
landholdings, large and rather discrete classes of landless laborers were at odds with the magnates
and developed greater laboring-class solidarity. The poor in these areas resorted to militant
defensive activities, such as strikes and political organization, and had low rates of transoceanic
migration.
98
Secondly, the émigrés were not solely contadini and laborers:
Banfield, Edward, The Moral Basis of a Backward Society, 1958).
95
Auster, Lawrence, “Exposing the Open-Borders Arguments Part Two: False Parallels with Other
96
Cultures,” The Myth of Hispanic Family Values, http://www.amnation.com/vfr/archives/006103.html
Briggs, John W., An Italian Passage: Immigrants to Three American Cities, 1890-1930, Yale University
97
Press, New Haven, 1978.
Ibid, p. 4.
98
-64-
Larger size and high incidence of literacy and franchise holding also characterized the families of
emigrants of the artisan class, a group that provided more than their proportional share of the
emigrants.
The emigrants, then, came largely from the upper levels of the working classes in the town
and from the middle range of the agriculturalists (emphasis added).
99
Here again, the Del Grande and Paolini families fit this description.
Outlook: campanilismo or country
Another commonly held belief was the Italian immigrants were very parochial, that is, they were
concerned only with local matters and compelled to maintained their local ways, an attitude and behavior
labeled campanilismo, that is, to be concerned with only that which is within the sounds of the church bells.
If such an attitude and behavior was so ingrained, then marriages of Italian immigrants would have
been restricted to spouses from the same village or town. There was even the option of returning to Italy in
search of a bride or by arranging to have a potential bride sent. Briggs found that when there was a
significantly large population from a village or town, endogamous marriages did occur, but since such large
populations from a particular village was rare, endogamy rarely occurred though Italians immigrants did
tend to marry those of the same region. Again, the Del Grande are illustrative:
100
Del Grande
Children
Married
Italian
Same
Region
Paolini
Children
Married
Italian
Same
Region
Beatrice Yes South Armando Yes Yes
Gilda Yes South Adolph No
Angiolina Yes South Arthur Yes Yes
Hugo n/a Aldo n/a
Maria Ines Yes South Emily No
Carl Albert Yes unknown Otto No
Italia (Lily) n/a
Ibid, p. 9.
99
Ibid., p. 81.
100
-65-
Mutual-Aid Societies
As in Italy, Italian-Americans formed local organizations to deal with social, economic, and cultural
problems, and provided a social framework for mutual assistance. They often grew out of the informal
associations fostered in the local saloon which served as a social and recreational center and union hall. It
was here that men learned of job opportunities, passed their idle time in conversation, and played card
games such as briscola and tresette, or bowled Italian style called bocce.
The first function of these organizations was to provide money that offered sick benefits and burial
cost. Many of them owned sections in cemeteries. However, unlike American worker societies, benefits
were solely at the discretion of the society and not by a fixed amount as an insurance policy.
They formed committees to promote benevolence and charity by visiting, aiding and caring for the
sick and destitute members. They encouraged each other in their businesses, and they provided points of
contact for obtaining employment–networking, in today’s parlance.
These organizations also sponsored self-improvement activities such as lectures and evening classes
for learning the English language. Finally, they sponsored social occasions such as an annual ball or dance,
picnics, sports competitions and festivals.
The first such organization in Utica was called Società Italiana di Progesso ed Aiuto (The Italian
Society for Progress and Aid) in 1889, followed six years later by a second society called the Società Capi dei
Famigli Italo-Americana di Mutto Soccorso (Heads of Family Society for Mutual Aid). Briggs describes them
“clearly worker initiated and led.” Their leaders tended to have some employable skill and to be upwardly
101
mobile.”
Boosterism
There were also organizations of Italian Americans that were formed in order to defend ‘the good
name of Italians,’ and correspondingly to improve the manners and morals of Italians so that they would not
defame the name but reflect positively on the colony. Creation of such organizations was in reaction to new
stories and editorials in the American press. At first, the Italian enclaves were treated as exotic tribal areas
in the American press, providing special interest stories; later, however, the press became more critical of
Italians by emphasizing crime, social dysfunction, crowded and ill-kept housing condition, and finally
radicalism, that is, anarchism and socialism.
A primary example of this type of organization was and–and still is–the Order Sons of Italy in
America. Such an organization usually had a house organ, that is, a newspaper that published articles that
refuted editorials in the community-wide newspapers that were critical of Italians or that seem to
overemphasize stories that reflected negatively on Italians. The paper would also publish articles and
editorials that urged its Italian readers to improve themselves and to behave in a manner that would reflect
positively on the Italian community.
Ibid., p. 142.
101
-66-
There was also the issue of identity and acceptance that placed Italian immigrants and their
succeeding generations in a quandary. They were proud to be Italian, and they wished to maintain their
heritage. At the same time, they wanted to be accepted as part of American society. A focal point for this
issue was that of language. Those who had immigrated spoke Italian, and they wanted to learn English, not
only to function in American society but to be accepted by it. Their first-generation offspring learned
102
Italian as their parents spoke Italian in the home but learned English in their school, play, and work. The
second-generation often did not learn Italian. Some urged that it be taught at home or in the schools or in a
club or church while others believed that they were Americans and should speak only English.
Proving Fealty as Italian-Americans
To be accepted as an American required some act of fealty by Italians yet one that would not be seen
as rejecting themselves and their heritage. Cristoforo Colombo was adopted and promulgated as both an
Italian and American hero that both the local colony and the wider community could accept and which both
could celebrate as one people.
Relocation to Chicago
The birth of Don Francesco and Gemma’s eleventh child and third son is recorded on his baptismal
record as January 26, 1902 and the baptism on August 2, 1903. The baptism was performed and recorded
103
in the church of Holy Guardian Angeles in Chicago. No record of birth was found in Chicago. It is likely that
the Del Grande family, along with Angiolina and Carmino Alfano, and Gilda and Domenico Del Vecchio,
moved to Chicago after the two weddings and the birth of Donato, probably in 1903.
On September 26, 1906, after having moved to Chicago, Don Francesco became a naturalized citizen,
and by law, his wife and children became naturalized as well. Two witnesses listed on his naturalization
card: Domenico Del Vecchio, now his son-in-law, and Achille Ciferni, a fellow Popolese and tailor, both
having emigrated from Italy to Utica, had also moved to Chicago. Why did they move at this time and to this
place?
I use the definition for first-generation as those born in America of immigrants.
102
Baptismal record of Donato Del Grande by the Church of Holy Guardian Angels, Chicago, Illinois;
103
Family History Library microfilm 1503304, Page 353, Entry number 1762.
-67-
Petition for Naturalization of Francesco Paolo Del Grande
(Page 1 of 4)
-68-
-69-
Del Grande Family
Gemma Castricone [Del
Grande]
Francesco Paolo Del Grande
Gilda Del Grande
Ungaro Tarquinio Del Grande
Maria Beatrice Del Grande
-70-
-71-
Alfano Family
Maria Angiolina Del Grande
[Alfano]
Carmino Alfano
Carmine Alfano
Angeline (Nean) Alfano
-72-
-73-
Alfano
Front row left to right: Delores Thurston, unknown, Carmino Alfano,
Angiolina (Angeline) Del Grande [Alfano]
Backrow left to right: unknown Angeline (Nean) Alfano, Anne Alfano,
Guiseppe (Joseph) Zegarelli, Grazia (Grace) Zegarelli
Front row: Annie Alfano [Thurston], Angeline [Nean] Alfano;
Middle row: Angeline Del Grande [Alfano], Delores Thurston, Carmine Alfano,
Alice Mallen [Fitzpatrick];
Back row: Florence Alfano [Pecheone], Red Thurston, Alice Fitzpatrick [Alfano],
Kathleen Fitzpatrick [Pettinelli]
-74-
-75-
Chapter 6
The Del Grande Move to Chicago
Changes in the Garment Industry favored the Del Grande
Having no written document nor any remembrance by a descendent, only the likely possibilities can be
considered as to the why the Del Grande moved to Chicago. It is doubtful that they were drawn by encouraging
reports of a mild climate, low crime rates, and little corruption. The most likely possibility was economic
opportunity much more favorable to that of Utica.
It is known that Don Francesco was a tailor by profession his whole life, but it is not known whether he
was self-employed or worked for a company. In Popoli, he worked as a ‘merchant tailor,’ that is, one who made
and sold the clothing on a made-to-order basis. He made women’s clothing, and he specialized it lady’s riding
habits. While it is quite likely that Don Francesco continued to make clothes-to-order for clients through
personal contacts in Chicago, it seems extremely unlikely that he would have moved to Chicago in order to
operate solely in such a fashion. He would have had no established clientele as he did in Popoli; and it would
take years for him and his family to develop such a clientele base.
He certainly must have been aware of the new methods of production, marketing, and selling. He must
have been aware of the growth of business opportunities in the city of Chicago. It is therefore likely that he
moved to Chicago in order to take advantage of the possibilities that it offered. Again, it cannot be stated
exactly what Don Francesco, Gemma, and the children did, for they were all tailors at one time. At best, only an
outline can be drawn as to the economic and business situation that existed at the time, and how that situation
afforded them opportunities.
The first general factor that favored the choice of Chicago was the size and growth of the city’s
population.
As the city's population grew, internal multiplier effects came into play: more people meant more
construction, provisions, services, entertainment, etc., which, in turn, led to more jobs and more
people, and perforce to iteration after iteration of the same process. Chicago's population grew from
just under 30,000 in 1850 to about 300,000 by 1870 then to almost 1.1 million by 1890. By 1910 the
city's population had doubled again to almost 2.2 million, and Chicago's population grew by another
55 percent or so over the next two decades, approaching 3.4 million by 1930. Some of this growth
came from annexation, but most was “real,” the result of natural increase (an excess of births over
deaths among the resident population), rural migration (from the Midwest and, increasingly, from the
South), and from foreign immigration (particularly from Southern and Eastern Europe).
104
The growth in the clothing sector was not due to just population growth. It was due to changes in the
method of production, in marketing, and in sales.
Encyclopedia of Chicago,
104
http://www.encyclopedia.chicagohistory.org/pages/198.html, The
Electronic Encyclopedia of Chicago © 2005 Chicago Historical Society.
-76-
Prior to 1860, clothing had been made at home or custom made by tailors in their shops. “After the Civil
War, an increasing number of companies began to manufacture ready-to-wear suits, and more men began to
consider these suits acceptable substitutes for custom-tailored clothing. One historian estimated that in 1880
less than half of men's clothing was purchased ready-to-wear, but by the mid-1890s the figure had grown to
more than 90 percent.” The process was described as being thoroughly systematized:
105
“... Charles Cist reported on a Cincinnati business that had subdivided the work of making a pair of
pants among seventeen people. And at the end of the century, J esse Pope reported on a company that
used thirty-nine steps–and thirty-nine workers–to manufacture a man's coat.
106
The company described above by Jesse Pope is a
factory, but before the introduction of factories, clothing
companies often used middlemen called sweaters that
served as subcontractors to pay for the sewing of
garments or parts of a garment on a piecework basis to
individual workers or small groups of workers,
sometimes families. The workers were usually
immigrants who had few other employment opportunities
and thus were forced to produce large numbers of units of
clothing for very small rates. The workers either worked
in their homes and/or in small rooms in tenement
buildings that were crowded and dangerous. There was
no job security and the pay was minimal. It is not clear
whether the name sweatshop was derived from the
conditions or the name of the middleman. Factories were
thought to be an improvement but it is obvious that they could be as demanding and as uncomfortable as a
sweatshop.
Another innovation in the marketing and selling of clothing was the introduction of made-to-measure
suits called “tailor to the trade.” Starting in the 1890s, these clothing companies supplied to local merchants in
rural areas with sample books and measuring instructions. The desired style suit and the measurements taken
were then sent to the company’s central location were the suit was sewn. By the turn of the century, hundreds
of these operations inundated small-town retailers with solicitations for business.
107
Schorman, Rob, Selling Style: Clothing and Social Change at the Turn of the Century, University of
105
Pennsylvania Press, 2003, p. 22.
Ibid, page 23.
106
Ibid, page 41.
107
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The heyday of the mail-order business occurred between the
1890s and the 1910s, when it was dominated by Montgomery Ward
and Sears which sold many types of products, but also included strictly
clothing manufactures such as Spiegel, Kuppenheimer and Harry and
Max Hart, Marcus Marx, and Joseph Schaffner (later Hart, Schaffner
and Marx), L. Abt & Sons, and M. Born & Co.
This growth in the garment industry in the United States is
reflected in the census figures for the occupation of tailor and
tailoresses :
108
1970 1960 1950 1940 1930 1920 1910 1900
Tailors & Tailoresses 71 43 86 120 169 192 205 134
Percentage change from prior year 65% -50% -2% -29% -12% -6% 53%
(In Thousands of persons 14 years old and over, except as indicated)
With the growth of commerce came a social revolution: employed women. No longer content to stay
on the farm or in the small home town, they flocked to the city to enter the workforce as administrative
support personnel: secretaries, typists, junior editors, etc. As a woman in business, they wanted to dress for
business and that meant a suit, albeit one designed for a woman.
Another garment sold ready-made to women by the end of the century was the “tailor-made suit,”
a special variant of women’s outerwear that borrowed fabrics, cut, padding, pressing, and styling
from tailoring techniques most associated with men’s wear. In fact, men made most of these suits
because the job required skills that dressmakers ordinarily did not possess. Perhaps because
making them had never been within the normal scope of the homemaker or professional
dressmaker, these garments gained earlier entrée into a factory system of production.
Advertisements occasionally featured ready-made tailored suits in the 1800s, and they appeared
more frequently in the 1890s, though they did not achieve widespread acceptance as ready-made
goods until the early 1900s.
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Don Francesco’s specialty was women’s riding habits, which is a suit. He would have been perfectly suited
[pardon the pun] to help design and tailor this new fashion. In addition, a corollary change in fashion also
matched the tailoring experience of Don Francesco:
The breakthrough garment in the women’s ready-made industry was the shirtwaist, a blouse
fashioned along the lines of a man’s shirt (“a man’s shirt transformed into a thing of beauty,”
according to one observer). The tailor-made suit had a removable jacket worn over such a waist,
and in the 1890s it began to be acceptable to wear the waist and skirt as a complete outfit. The
popular style had great advantages in terms of flexibility and economy, since skirts and waists
could be mixed and matched in ways that would expand a woman’s wardrobe options far beyond
Historical Statistics of the United States: Colonial Times to 1970, Part I, U.S. Department of
108
Commerce, Bureau of the Census, September 1975. Series D 233-682: Detailed Occupation of the
Economically Active Population: 1900 - 1970 - Con, page 43.
Ibid, p. 50.
109
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what was possible when each costume needed to be complete unto itself. The shirtwaist’s
popularity surged throughout the 1890's and 1900s, achieving its peak between 1909 and 1914.
110
Based upon the above, what can we surmise as to the work of Don Francesco and the Del Grande
family, particularly his sons, Ungaro and Carlo Alberto who are also listed as tailors in the clothing industry in
the 1910 and 1920 census? According to the 1910 census, they are tailors and they all are working in a
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tailor shop. Unfortunately, in the 1920 census, while they report their occupation as tailors, they specify only
that they are working in the ‘clothing’ industry.
The Encyclopedia of Chicago describes the Near West Side, where the Del Grande and Paolini families
located, as one of the three areas of the city that had a high concentration of sweatshops. Although most
sweatshops had been closed due to the opening of factories, it is possible that Don Francesco worked in a
sweatshop for a few years and possibly joined by his sons Ungaro and Carlo Alberto. It is more likely that
they found work in a factory which provided better working conditions, higher pay, and some protection
through union membership. Beatrice and her son Arturo also worked in a factory, first for Alfred Decker &
Cohn and later Hart, Schaffner and Marx. Perhaps later the Del Grande men found work in a tailor shop.
In the early years, many Italian women and girls also worked at home, sewing mountains of
coats or pants in dim light for pennies an hour. This was referred to as the "putting out
system" and helpless immigrants were often cheated by fast-talking agents. By 1900, large
clothing factories replaced the homework and sweatshops. Both men and women were
engaged in the needle trades at such establishments as Hart, Schaffner, and Marx. This
brought together on the Near West Side a critical mass of perhaps 40,000 clothing workers, a
good number of them of Italian background.
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Extended Family Members Move to Chicago
Domenico Del Vecchio and Gilda also moved to
Chicago with their two children, Francesco and Nancy.
They lived at 512 Centre Avenue (now Racine Avenue).
They had four additional children: Mary, Louisa, Carlo
and Paul. They then moved to St. Louis sometime
between 1910 and 1920 as they are found on the 1910
census in Chicago and on the 1920 census in St. Louis. No
reason is known for the move to St. Louis.
Ibid, page 51.
110
Gilda and Angela were also listed as tailors in the 1900 census in Utica.
111
Candeloro, Dominic Lawrence, Chicago's Italians: Immigrants, Ethnics, Americans, The Making of
112
America Series, Arcadia Publishing, Chicago, 2003, p. 13.
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Angiolina (Angeline) Del Grande and her husband Carmino Alfano had their first child, Florence, in
Chicago on September 25, 1903. Their next child, Angeline Jean (Nean) Alfano was born in Utica, New York
on June 8, 1907, and so it is concluded that they move back to Utica some time in this period. The rest of
their children, Marie, Ann, Patsy, Carmen and Lillian, were also born in Utica. The families maintained
contact, and it is known that both Carlo Alberto and Ungaro traveled to Utica for special occasions. Many of
the photographs that are now shared among their descendants are those taken by the families in Chicago and
sent to the Alfano’s in New York.
There is no evidence to indicate whether or not the family of Achille Ciferni accompanied his move to
Chicago. All that is known is that he and the Del Grande family resided at 210 W. Taylor Street on September
26, 1906. Sometime between 1906 and 1910, he returned to Utica as he and his family are listed on the
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1910 census. No reason is know for the return of the Alfano and the Ciferni, but in all likelihood, it was
personal and not financial.
Maria Ines Del Grande married Antonio Sirimarco in 1909, and they lived at 635 S. Centre Avenue
(now Racine Avenue) in Chicago along with Tony’s brother Saverio. Tony emigrated from San Sosti, Calabria,
Italy in 1904. He had come alone when he was just a teenager. All he had with him was his clarinet.
114
His first jobs were playing in funeral processions at which bands would play as was the custom during
this period. He then worked in a theater orchestra for many years, that is, live theater--not a movie theater.
115
Even if a play was not a musical, there would be an orchestra. Attilo Paolini said that he played at the
Erlanger Theatre which did present musicals, and Isabel Daniels Paolini recalled that he played in "No No
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Nanette" which had a long run. The theaters did well in the Roaring Twenties, and he made good money.
Later on, he gave clarinet lessons.
Petition for Naturalization, and Oath of Renunciation and Allegiance of Francesco Paolo Del
113
Grande, September 26, 1906
Ship's manifest for the Prince Adalbert that departed Naples, Italy on April 19, 1904 and arrived at
114
Ellis Island May 4, 1904 listing Antonio Sirimarco.
The only corroboration found was the following statement concerning Banda Ionica, an Italian folk
115
group focused on the brass band traditions of Sicily. The roots of the music played by the band can be traced
to Holy Week and funeral marches. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Banda_Ionica
Originally called the Palace Music Hall located in the City Hall Square Building, at 127-139 N. Clark
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Street. Operated from the 1930's into the early ‘60s when it closed. The City Hall Square Building/Erlanger
Theatre was demolished starting in May of 1962. The site is now the Richard J. Daley Center. “Cinema
Treasures,” http://cinematreasures.org/theater/984/
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Anthony Sirimarco with
Carol Jean and Patricia
Louise Sirimarco
Marie Ines Del Grande and Anthony
Sirimarco
Marie Ines Del Grande [Sirimarco]
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-83-
Chapter 7
Arcangela Del Grande
My first awareness of Arcangela Del Grande was the appearance of her name on the manifest of the
Regina di Italia which arrived at the Port of New York on April 3, 1898. She had accompanied Gemma and the Del
Grande children on their voyage of immigration to America. On the manifest was the notation that she was going
to join her daughter and son-in-law. My Italian genealogist Pierangela Badia had found this record as well, and
she asserted that Arcangela was the mother of Gemma:
Gemma takes also her 70-year-old mother Del Grande Arcangela, 70 years old -
all dirested (sic) to Utica NY to Francesco Paolo.
I initially accepted this judgment as she was traveling with Gemma but I wondered why she was listed as
a Del Grande. Normally Italian women use their maiden name, which I didn’t know then, or her married name
which would be Castricone if she was Gemma’s mother. I assumed that the name written was a mistake, and I
hypothesized that either Arcangela misinterpreted the question or the ship’s recorder misunderstood the answer;
after all, probably the Del Grande spoke no English.
I found the 1900 census for the Del Grande family living in Utica, New York, but Arcangela was not listed.
I assumed that she had died between her date of arrival and the date of the census; after all, it had been noted on
the ship’s manifest that she had been in the hospital at Ellis Island.
I requested a search of the records from the Registrar of Vital Statistics of the city of Utica, New York. A
search is purchased for three consecutive years at a cost of $20, so I requested a search for the years 1898, 1899
and 1900. No record of death was found. I then identified the churches in Utica and their location relative to the
address of the Del Grande family, in order to locate the church that she and the Del Grande would have attended.
I assumed that there would be a record of the mass given in her remembrance at her passing. The most likely
churches were St. Mary of Mount Carmel, Old St. John’s Church in St. John Parish, and St. Agnes (now
incorporated in St. Anthony of Padua). I contacted each but none had a record of her.
I started to worry about this woman. Had she died alone? Was there no memorial for her? I was
surprised at my own feeling in this matter: that I cared about a woman who I never met and who had probably
died a hundred years ago. Genealogical research does strange things to the researcher.
I continued to formulate hypotheses to guide my search. If she was in the hospital at Ellis Island, perhaps
she passed away on the island. During its half-century of operation, over 3,500 immigrants died at Ellis Island.
117
Where would she have been buried? I learned that persons who died at Ellis Island were buried in the cemetery
for Manhattan, and wrote of letter of inquiry; again, the reply was negative.
For the sake of a complete genealogical record, I sought the birth record of Arcangela. I found the record
on Family History Library film number 1384889 containing birth records for the years 1827 and 1828. The index
lists an “Angiola Del Grande” which I noted but did not consider her to be Arcangela. However, an inspection of
the actual Atto d’Nascita stipulates il nome di Arcangela while in the column Indicazione, she is listed as
“Arcangiola del Grande.” This indeed was the birth record of Arcangela, and that her maiden name was in fact
Hamblin, B. Colin, Ellis Island: The Official Souvenir Guide, Aramark, 1991, p.xx. Also found at
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http://sydaby.eget.net/swe/ellis_island.htm.
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Del Grande! If she was the mother of Gemma, then this finding had an unfortunate consequence. Her father was
Raffaele Del Grande, and he was the father of Donato Del Grande, Francesco Paolo Del Grande’s father: Gemma
and Francesco were first cousins! I thought that I had better find the birth record of Gemma to make certain of
this conclusion.
I found both the birth record of Gemma and her record of marriage to Francesco Paolo: both identified
one Carmina Giovani as the mother of Gemma. With relief, I had determined that Don Francesco and Gemma
were not first cousins; Arcangela was an aunt to Don Francesco.
Carmina Giovani had married Berardino Castricone. I therefore hypothesized that Carmina had died, and
that Berardino had married Arcangela; Gemma had ‘adopted’ Arcangela as her mother, or perhaps Carmina had
died at childbirth and Gemma did not even know that Arcangela was not her birth mother. My imagination knew
no bounds.
I again returned to a year-by-year search of the atti di morti of the Registri dello stato civile for Popoli,
and–ah-ha! I was right: Caterina Giovani died thirteen years after her marriage on March 24, 1869. Now to find
the marriage record of Berardino and Arcangela! It didn’t take long; Berardino had overcome his grief quickly: he
married in the same year–September 17, 1869. Unfortunately for me, he had married Anna Rosa Liberatore.
I had hit a brick wall. I didn’t know where Arcangela had died or been buried; and I had no idea of her
relationship to Gemma. I needed a fresh perspective. I called for help.
When I embarked on my adventures in genealogical research, I became aware of several websites that
invited membership, but only one had a local chapter of members. Il Circolo Filippo Mazzei is the local chapter of
Pursuing Our Italian Names Together (POINT). I joined in 2007 where I met the couple Donna Dengler and Daniel
Else. Over the years, we have shared dinners and travel adventures in Italy as well as our investigations of our
Italian ancestors.
I explained my puzzle to them. “Perhaps Arcangela was just accompanying the Del Grande family. Maybe
she wasn’t joining them but another family–her real daughter and son-in-law,” suggested Donna. “I see,” said the
blind man.” A whole new pathway opened.
At about this same time, I pursued another avenue to finding Arcangela: a daughter of Don Francesco
and Gemma who had married and settled in Utica rather than Chicago. Her name was Maria Angiolina (Angeline)
Del Grande, and she had married Carmino Alfano. Through an obituary of Angeline, as she was known in
America, I learned the names of her children, and I began to contact them, though most had passed away or were
mentally incapacitated. Also about this time, I subscribed to www.Ancestry.com, a website that provides access
to records such as the Social Security Death Index, census records, naturalization records, etc. It also provides an
online genealogical database that enables a subscriber to record information and store records found. About a
year early, I had started a database of the Del Grande - Paolini family in a fourteen-day trial period, but I had not
subscribed. The database was still there when I returned as a subscriber one year later, and I made a minor
modification to it–deleting an erroneous record to be specific. Within a day or two, I received an E-mail from one
Karen Alfano, inquiring whether or not I was related to a Beatrice Del Grande. I had a new cousin!
Since the discovery of our kinship, we have shared our genealogical research findings, photographs,
questions, and leads. She was unaware of Arcangela, but I now had an ally. I told her about Arcangela, and she
did a search of Ancestry.com. Instead of finding just the manifest record of Arcangela’s passage with the Del
Grande family in 1898, she found a manifest record in 1899. Arcangela had sailed with Lucia Del Grande, her
niece and a sister of Don Francesco on the ship Saale; and this time she and Lucia stated with whom they were
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joining in Utica: Achille whatever. The last name was indecipherable but–and this is difficult to explain but after
reading hundreds of handwritten records of the style of that time period, one would understand–I would
recognize it if I knew it.
I began to search for Arcangela’s marriage record and the marriage record(s) of her daughter(s). In
searching for Del Grande earlier in my genealogical research, I had found a birth record of Antonio d’Aurelio of
Stefano d’Aurelio and Arcangela Del Grande, though I wasn’t sure then that he was related to my Del Grande
family. Antonio’s birth was in 1858. I proceeded to search backwards. In the year 1855, I found the birth record
of Maria Grazia d’Aurelio. Since Stefano and Arcangela could have additional daughters, I continued my search
but I also then began to search for a marriage record of Grazia, starting seventeen years after her birth.
I found it: June 3, 1881–but to Gennaro Di Pillo. The name Achille whatever could not be read as
Gennaro Di Pillo. Maybe it was another daughter and son-in-law of Arcangela. [I later confirmed that Gennaro
died in 1883.]
Left side of the ship’s manifest showing names of Arcangela Del Grande and Lucia Del Grande
Right side of the ship’s manifest showing to whom Arcangela and Lucia were going to join
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In every great mystery or detective story, the investigator needs a break–some unexpected piece of luck
to bridge to the next step; and now mine came. Karen Alfano had receive a trove of photographs from her
mother and aunts, and she was passing them to me and other new cousins that we had contacted in our search
for long-lost relatives. We were trying to identify persons in the photographs as most of them had no
identification, and it was difficult to determine whether one picture of a man of about age twenty-five was same
man in a picture of a man of age sixty-five. The man in question was Don Francesco, and so Karen asked me to
send her a photograph of a younger Don Francesco.
I knew that I had such a photograph in my computer folder of
images. Mixed with images of people were images of documents in a
format called .jpg (jay-peg). These were documents that I had
gathered over time in my research. Rather than reading the title of
each image, I simply invoked the image viewer and looked through
the folder. The image of Don Francesco’s naturalization card
appeared–a small, 2" x 3" document. I glanced at it, and then my eyes
slowly focused on the name of the second witness for Don Francesco:
Achille Ciferni–in typewritten print! I had my man!
I immediately notified Karen, and then I began to search the
census records on www.Ancestry.com. Bang! A 1930 census record for 608 Second Street in Utica, New York for
Achille Ciferni and Grace Ciferni. The Italian name for Grace is Grazia. I was getting close.
Before I could start the search again for an earlier census record, Karen sent me an E-mail: she had found
the 1920 census record for Ciferni. I clicked the link she had sent, and up came the record; the third member of
the Cirfeni household was Arcangela Del Grande! The indexed name was misspelled, and so Karen had used
some creative alternatives to retrieve the record. I thought that there even might be a 1910 census record and
indeed there was; I had found it by perusing each census sheet in the same ward as the 1920 census.
Since Arcangela’s name hadn’t appeared in the 1930 census, and she was ninety-two years of age in
1920, I assumed that she had died between the two decennial censuses. I fired off a request for a genealogical
search of death records with my $22.00 money order to the Registrar of Utica, asking for the standard three-year
search of the years 1920-22. Within a week, I received a verified transcript from the register of deaths:
Arcangela Del Grande, age 81 (sic) years , 9 months, 26 days, had died on April 28, 1920; her place of burial is
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Calvary Cemetery in Utica, New York.
I have no doubt that she was buried by her daughter and son-in-law as they are buried in the same
cemetery. She is with family. Now she and her second great grandnephew can both rest peacefully.
Peace be upon her!
Naturalization card of Francesco Paolo
Del Grande
The number of years is incorrect as the birth record clearly states: L’anno mille ottocento ventisette,
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il di ventitre del mese di luglio": the year 1827 of the 23 of the month of July. She was 92 years old when she
rd
died.
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Chapter 8
The Paolini Decide to Emigrate to America
It is not known exactly when, but probably about 1905, Alfredo Paolini suffered a serious illness, a
fever of some sort; the doctor did not know the cause or nature of the problem. In any case, he inquired of
Beatrice as to whether she had family that could provide support for her and her family in the event of his
incapacitation or death. “They are all in America,” answered Beatrice. "Then I think you should be near
them," replied the doctor.
Getting Papers in Order
On March 24, 1905, Ildebrando Paolini submitted an application for a passport to the
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headquarters of the Casellario Di Polizia Amministrativa which in turn requested approval that a passport be
issued from the governmental and police offices of Sulmona, the administrative seat for his home town of
Popoli. Signed by the major of Naples, the passport was valid for three years; the noted destination was
Chicago. Alfredo is described by his date of birth, (21 Dec 1867), occupation, (tailor), and parents: “figlio di
Ignoto” (son of unknown father) and of Angiola Paolini.
Included are the émigrés that will accompany him: wife, sons and mother:
-wife, Maria Beatrice Del Grande (daughter of Francesco Paolo Del Grande) born in Popoli on 2 MAY
1879
-son, Armando Paolini age 9, born in Naples
-son, Adolfo Paolini, age 7, born in Naples
-son, Arturo Paolini, age 5, born in Naples
-son, Aldo Paolini, age 3, born in Naples
-mother, Angiola Paolini age 71, born in Popoli, daughter of Cassiodoro
Also listed on the record are Ildebrando’s physical traits:
Height: 1.65 mt. [5' 5"]
Age: 39
Forehead: normal dimension
Eyes:
Nose: "Greek" form
Mouth: normal size
Hair: dark brown
Clean shaved with brown moustache
Body size: normal
Noticeable signs: scar on his forehead
The requirement of a passport was established by a law establishing the Commissariat of
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Emigration in 1901. Foerster, Robert F., The Italian Emigration of Our Times, Harvard University Press,
Cambridge, 1919.
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Descriptions of Italian emigration often give the impression of a rather unregulated and haphazard
procedure–that emigrants were solely on their own and that they were at the mercy of miserly shipowners
and uncaring bureaucrats. Certainly there were abuses, but based upon legislation of the Italian and
American governments and the experience of the Paolini family as will be described, there were regulations
and procedures that aided and protected emigrants before, during, and after passage.
The process was initiated by the submission of a Domanda di Passaporto per L’Estero, a request to
the major of Naples for a passport for foreign travel. Inquiry by the Naples police department was then
made to the administrative district for his home town of Popoli which was the city of Sulmona. It was asked
whether there was any “impediment” to his leaving, with a specific inquiry as to whether he owed taxes. The
response was “Nulla Osta”–no impediment.
There was then issued a Certificato Municipale from the pretore (magistrate) of Naples in which he
declared the following:
Paolini Ildebrando, natural son of Angiola Paolini is resident in Naples on 2 Via Università and
that he is poor and doesn't own any kind of property nor does he contribute to the tax system and
he doesn't do any kind of business activity (shop, etc.), nor has a profession or trade; nor shop, no
manufacture, nor an artist, but lives only with day to day work with his own arms and hands.
The certificate is dated 7 Mar 1906.
This statement is in direct contradiction to that which Beatrice described as to their profession and
financial position. Did the family experience some financial set back? Or did they just sell their business in
anticipation of their emigration and move to 2 Via Università? Was Alfredo incapacitated? Did he declare
that he was poor and worked only as a laborer because he thought that only in this way could he obtain a
passport and receive permission to leave? There are no answers to these questions.
A Last Visit
When their departure was certain, Beatrice visited the mausoleum of her beloved son Attilio. He
was entombed in a mausoleum which is believe to be in Poggioreale Cemetery, located on the east side of
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the city in an area also called Poggioreale . Poggioreale is more that a cemetery: it is a necropolis of large
121
tombstones and mausoleums.
Two earlier built cemeteries, Santa Maria del Pianto and the adjacent Cimitero Monumentale, were
120
combined to become the Poggioreale Cemetery.
“Poggioreale” means “royal hill”, and there was a Villa Poggioreale begun in 1487.
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Attilio had died two years prior in 1904; he
had lived only about six months. His body had been
embalmed so that it would be preserved.
As she held her son, she must have
pondered the future. She was pregnant, and the
voyage would be about ten days. They would be in
steerage, and she probably had heard of the
discomfort of that accommodation. They would
then be processed for admittance at a place called
Ellis Island. Would they be allowed to enter?
Would Alfredo hold his temper? Then a two-day
train ride to Chicago, hopefully into the home and
comfort of her father and mother.
The Paolini family embarked from Naples, Italy on May 20, 1906.
Cimitero Poggioreale
Napoli - Panorama da S. Martino
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Chapter 9
Emigration of the Paolini Family
The Voyage
Unlike most of the passengers that day, the Paolini family had only to walk to the Port of Naples to
embark. It must have been crowded, because the number of Neapolitan émigrés had grown in the past few
years: from 3,165 in 1876, to 76,000 in 1901, to 90,000 in 1906.
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Their ship was the SS (steamship) Moltke, a modern ship of the time, built for the Hamburg-American
Line in 1902, and sailed under a German flag. The ship could accommodate 2,102 passengers: 333 first
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class; 169 second class; and 1,600 third class.
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The ship’s manifest does not use the terms of class but rather the terms “saloon, cabin and steerage
passengers.” The word ‘saloon’ seems to be an Americanization of the British term ‘salon,’ meaning elegant
or fashionable apartment. A cabin, obviously, was a single room accommodation. Steerage, the name
derived from the place that housed the steering mechanism of sailing ships, was, for the most part, an open,
dormitory space in the lowest part of the ship.
The price of a ticket varied according to the class. In one account, a passenger sailed from New York
to Naples, booked in steerage, for $30 while first class cost $90. Accounting for inflation to the present
(2009), $30 and $90 has the ‘purchasing power' of $738 and $2,210, respectively. Based upon the
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photographs of the SS Moltke, it seems to have been quite elegant and spacious–at least above the waterline.
No photographs or written descriptions of its steerage were found.
Most of the descriptions of the passage on ships and the processing of Ellis Island are based upon
descriptions by other émigrés. Beatrice never complained about the conditions nor her treatment, and so
what follows is only a suggestion of the conditions the Paolini family might have encountered and/or was
typical for other immigrant passengers.
Based upon several descriptions, the long narrow compartment were divided into separate
dormitories for single men, single women, and families. It is quite likely that there was a common eating
area with tables. There may have been chairs or benches and tables, affixed to the bulkhead by cables to
prevent their shifting with the rolling of the ship. One male passenger, sailing in 1898, described his
accommodations:
Behan, p.23.
122
Flying under a flag of a country means that it operates under the maritime regulations and
123
inspection of that country.
“Ellis Island Ship List,” hosted by RootsWeb,
124
http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~knappdb/ships_M.htm]
Measuring Worth: Purchasing Power of Money in the United States from 1774 to 2000,
125
http://www.measuringworth.com/ppowerus/
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The remaining space is filled with iron bunks,
row after row, tier upon tier, all running fore
and aft in double banks. A thin iron rod is all
that separates one sleeper from another. In each
bunk are placed « a donkey's breakfast (a straw
mattress), a blanket of the horse variety, a
battered tin plate and pannikin, a knife, a
126
fork, and a spoon. This completes the
emigrant's « kit,» which in former days had to
be found by himself.
127
Before getting underway, a manifest of the ship’s
passengers was completed through interviews with each
passenger. As additional regulations were instituted so as
to improve conditions for passengers and improve the efficiency of the processing upon arrival, the forms
were changed to some degree. In the case of the Paolini’s passage, form 1500B designed by the Immigration
Service, Department of Commerce and Labor, was used to record the names and various personal
information. For a more thorough description and use of the manifest, see appendix A.
The names of the Paolini family are listed on lines 22-28. In the column entitled, “Whether going to
join a relative or friend; and if so, what relative or friend, and his name and complete address,” entered is the
name Francesco Paolo Del Grand at 321 A [nothing more], Chicago, Illinois (see image of manifest on next
page). The manifest also indicates that Don Francesco paid for the passage of all members of the Paolini
family.
Rather than the immigration officials at Ellis Island, it was the recording the names of émigrés by the
ship’s personnel that most likely was the cause of change in name, or the misspelling of names. Most likely,
the person recording the information was different from the émigré; in this case, German and Italian.
Prior to casting off, all passengers were inspected by the surgeon. This procedure was instituted by
the shipping companies so as to avoid having an émigré rejected by the Immigration Service as the émigré
would have to be returned to his/her home port at the company’s expense.
Departure
At this point, the vessel was ready to set sail, and it must have been one of the most heartbreaking
points in the journey, for surely below on the dock were friends who had come to see them off. One such
description is more than the heart can take:
Open Berths in Steerage
A small pan or cup.
126
Whitmarsh, H. Phelps, “The Steerage of To-Day - A Personal Experience by H. Phelps
127
Whitmarsh with 13 Illustrations by A. Castaigne.” 1898 Century Magazine, Volume LV, Number
67, Pages 528-543.
http://www.gjenvick.com/Steerage/1898-SteerageConditions-APersonalExperience.html
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SS Moltke
Photos courtesy of Gjenvick-Gjønvik Archives
http://www.gjenvick.com/Steerage/index.html
Promenade Deck
Deck life on the SS Moltke, steerage passengers approaching the
wharf in New York
Photo purchased from Norway-Heritage: Hands Across the Sea
Cupola and Main Saloon
Smoking Room
SS Moltke
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Steerage Accommodations
128
It is quite likely that the Paolini family were assigned these third class cabin accommodations in
steerage as opposed to the open birth area that was assigned to single men.
“Passengers are now allotted
enclosed cabins with berths of
modern type for two or four
persons, while there are also a
number of six-berthed rooms for
the use of families. These cabins
are all lighted by electricity, and
the light can be switched on or off
as required by the occupants. In
addition to a washstand the rooms
are also provided with a mirror,
towels, and a plentiful supply of
other toilet requisites.”
Cunard Lanconia I and Franconia I Rare 1912
Brochure
Photos courtesy of Gjenvick-Gjønvik Archives
http://www.gjenvick.com/Steerage/index.html
Four-berth Cabin in Steerage
Italian Immigrants Aboard Ship
Washroom for Steerage Passengers
Steerage Dinning Room
None of these photographs are of the SS Moltke.
128
-95-

One picture of that day stands out more strongly than all the rest. It is the picture of two women
waving a last good-by to some loved one aboard. I shall never forget the agonized expression that
came over the younger one's face when the ship began to move. Hiding her head on her companion's
shoulder, she wept as though her heart would break. Then, suddenly calming herself, she lifted her
brave little face, smiled through her tears, and waved us out of sight
129
To see Naples fading in the distance; to think of all the friends and familiar faces; to think of the sights,
sounds and smells of a vibrant city; to wonder if she were doing the right thing; all these thoughts must have
crossed Beatrice’s mind as the Moltke set forth from the Bay of Naples.
Treatment
The servicing of people en masse is a situation that can easily lead to indignities, real or imagined. The
procedures of loading people onto the ship, directing them to their accommodation, providing amenities, etc.
are fraught with potential errors in conduct that can disgruntle the most patient persons. Add to this situation
the human element of distinctions of class, ethnicity, language, status (émigré versus citizen), and relationship
(passenger versus crew), behavior can change, both real and perceived.
The class distinction was quickly revealed to Phelps H. Whitmarsh, probably a British gentleman. He
was traveling from Liverpool to New York to determine conditions in steerage, probably with the intent of
writing a story for a magazine. As he stepped aboard, he was greeted pleasantly enough:
“Second cabin, sir?” said the master-at-arms by the gangway.
“No; steerage,” I replied.
His polite tone changed, and he invited me to “Step for'ard lively!” in a manner that left no doubt in my mind
as to what part of the ship I belonged.
130
Rather than being served at a table, steerage passengers passed in a line, cafeteria-style but without
choice. It was not the food that were the subject of complaints, but the manner in which it was served. As one
passenger explained:
The first steward was a dirty, middle-aged Italian in a filthy shirt. A hand soiled with all kinds of dirt
-- ship dirt, kitchen dirt and human dirt -- pulled a great "cob" or biscuit out of a burlap sack and
shoved it towards me. There is no complaint about the quantity of the food, but the quality, and the
way that it was served was not fit for human beings.
131
Ibid.
129
Ibid.
130
Durland, Kellogg, “Urgency of Improved Steerage Conditions 1906,”
131
http://www.gjenvick.com/Steerage/1907-11-UrgencyOfImprovedSteerageConditions.html ; original source:
Durland, Kellogg, The Chautauquan: The Magazine of System in Reading, Chautauqua Press, Chautauqua, New
York, November 1907, Volume 48, Pages 383-390+.
-96-
To which he added:
The great drawback was the way in which, to quote one of my friends, it was slung at you.
132
And
The steerage is not provided with means for sitting down so usually the meals are eaten on the
floor.
133
On his return voyage, he complained:
There was no dining room at all provided, and we had to wash our own dishes -- which were of tin --
and absolutely no other provision was made for this than a barrel of cold sea water ! Sometimes I tried
to scrape the greasy macaroni off my plate with my finger nails. Several times I was lucky enough to
pick up a bit of newspaper somewhere for a dish cloth.
134
Of course seasickness was the most prevalent affliction to all passengers, but due to the location of
steerage, its chances of affecting these people were more likely as the rolling of the ship was magnified. The
consequence made for a fetid atmosphere. Even the best efforts did not prove effective:
To the credit of the ship, it must be said that everything was clean. Sweet it was not. Spotless, sanded
decks, scrubbed paint-work, and iron bunks could not hide the sour, shippy, reminiscent odor that
hung about the steerages, one and all.
135
Another reported:
...the air in steerage became rank with the heavy odor of spoiled food, sea-sickness, and unwashed
bodies. There was little privacy, and the lack of adequate toilet facilities made it difficult to keep
clean.
136
It shouldn’t be surprising that there were complaints of crude behavior towards single woman–what,
today, would be called sexual harassment.
137
Lastly, apparently on some ships, there were definite restrictions to where steerage passengers could
wander, though it is doubtful that they had to remain below deck the entire time. Beatrice was pregnant with
Amelia at the time that she was on the ship, and she was permitted to come up and stay on the deck to get some
fresh air.
Ibid.
132
Ibid.
133
Ibid.
134
Whitmarsh, “The Steerage of To-Day.”
135
“Ellis Island”
136
http://sydaby.eget.net/swe/ellis_island.htm Excerpted from Ellis Island: The Official
Souvenir Guide, by B. Colin Hamblin, published by Aramark, 2004.
“Women in Steerage Grossly Ill Used,” New York Times, 14 December 1909, Page 3, Column 2.
137
http://www.gjenvick.com/Steerage/1909-WomenInSteerage-ConditionsCalledAppalling.html
-97-
Declaring restrictions as to areas of the ship might inhibit adult steerage passengers ‘who would know
their place,’ but children are usually unaware nor inhibited. As Beatrice was taking the air on deck, people
began looking up and saying, “There’s a little boy way up there on the superstructure.” Beatrice looked up, and
sure enough, there was a little boy: her son, Adolfo. One of the seamen climbed up and brought him down
safely.
While there were reports of unhealthy and uncomfortable conditions for steerage passengers during
the period of immigration, plus personal tales of wretchedness and abuse, one is often left with the impression
that little or nothing was done to improve the situation nor aid the immigrant traveler. In my readings, I did
find evidence that the governments of both Italy and America did much in both regards (see appendix B: Italy's
Commissariat of Emigration).
Arrival at the Port of New York
The SS Moltke docked at the Port of New York on June 1,
1906. The ship docked at either the Hudson or East River piers. By
the time it arrived, the first and second class passengers had already
been inspected on board and, if cleared, allow to disembark; if not,
they joined the steerage passengers who were to be processed by
the U.S. Bureau of Immigration and the U.S. Public Health Service at
Ellis Island where they were to undergo medical and legal
inspection.
138
As Ellis Island was surrounded by relatively shallow water, the
passengers were discharged at the main dock, and those requiring
processing at Ellis Island were transported in a ferry or barge.
Since other ships may have recently
discharged their steerage passengers, a ship’s
passengers may have had to wait, possibly for
several days, before debarking. The handwritten
entry, probably by the ship’s purser, has the date of
arrival of June 1 , while above is a stamped date,
st
probably by an immigration officer, of June 2. Thus
it is concluded that the Paolini family had to wait a
day in port before being transported to Ellis Island.
Statue of Liberty (1900-1910)
Immigrants walking from the barges to the main building. In
the background is a hospital where ill passengers were treated.
“Presidential Arrivals Through the Port of New York,”
138
http://www.ellisisland.org/genealogy/ellis_island_presidential_arrivals.asp
-98-
Processing Through Ellis Island
At some point in this process, each passenger was affixed with a name tag that included the name of the
ship, the manifest sheet number or alphabetic letter, and sheet list number. Beatrice’s tag stated: SS Moltke,
Sheet 213; List No. 23.
They entered the Registry Room or Great Hall where the inspections took place. The Great Hall was
divided by steel bar fencing that created twenty-two aisles. As each batch of thirty-two immigrants entered the
hall, they would have been shunted by ushers into the aisle corresponding to the manifest number or letter on
their tag. A doctor would perform a cursory inspection of each person, and if they passed, send them down the
aisle to the desk of an inspector for consideration. It was said that “doctors at Ellis Island soon became very
adept at conducting these "six second physicals."
139
At the end of the aisle, there was an inspector who interrogated the would-be immigrant regarding his
legal standing and moral character. The ship's manifest, which had recorded the immigrant's name and his/her
answers to twenty-nine questions, was used as the basis for the cross examination, which was to determine
whether or not the immigrant would be law-abiding and able to support himself/herself so as not likely to be a
public charge (with the acronym LPC), that is, welfare.
Imagine the cacophony of sounds of perhaps a thousand people talking in a multitude of languages
trying to communicate in the most earnest manner their answers to question, while in the background babies
cried, small children ran hither and yon, and mothers screamed for their children to obey. Imagine being eyed
suspiciously for having some contagious disease, mental defect or moral depravity. Imagine having to wait in
line–sometimes sitting but mostly standing, not just for minutes, but for hours. At best, the process took five
hours. Imagine the worry of your luggage being lost or stolen–not only your most valuable possessions but now
your only possessions. And then to fail to be admitted! It had to be a most stressful and exhausting experience.
Alfredo was suspected of having an illness or condition that prevented the family from proceeding to
the legal inspector. On each line number of the manifest is a handwritten abbreviation of “SI” meaning Special
Inquiry (see manifest), probably for a medical examination and then an appearance before a Board of Inquiry.
This probably caused Alfredo much embarrassment, and for Beatrice, uncertainty, worry and fear. Quite likely
they had disposed of their household goods and sold their business. Beatrice’s father and family were in
America and would be of limited assistance if they had to return. They had staked their future and their fortune
to come to America, and now it was in jeopardy.
The doctor had noted that Angiola, Alfredo’s mother, was “cert. senile disability & double cataracts;”
however, this illness does not seemed to have denied her entry, probably because the inspector believed that
her family would take care of her.
Rather than being processed in the normal five hours, the family was delayed for three days. A
separate listing entitled, “Record of Aliens Held for Special Inquiry” indicates Alfredo’s referral. His entry is
listed as: “[age] 39 m(ale] 40 [entry] Paolini, Ildebrando, 4ch mother and wf(Del Grade (sic)) LPC” (See
appendix A: Manifest–Special Inquiry Register).
“Ellis Island - History,”
139
http://www.ellisisland.org/genealogy/ellis_island_history.asp
-99-
Ellis Island
Immigrant Tag
Main Registry Building on Ellis Island
circa 1905
National Park Service
www.nps.gov
Eye Inspection
Library of Congress
Immigrants Debarking from Ferry
http://www.old-picture.com/
Mental Test
www.Ellis Island.org
http://www.ellisisland.org/photoalbums/Albu
m1/14.jpg
Great Hall
www.Oocites.org
http://www.oocities.com/thereillyfamily/ellisi
sl.jpg
Inspectors’ Desks
National Park Service
http://www.nps.gov/elis/photosmultimedia/Ellis-
Island-Photos.htm
-100-
-101-
Manifest Sheet of the SS Moltke showing Paolini Family
Manifest with middle section cutout
Blowup of right side of Paolini family
Left side of manifest showing names of Paolini family
-102-
It is possible that the illness Alfredo suffered in Naples had lingering signs, although it is difficult to
understand how a further inspection could have taken three days. Medical conditions could be a cause for
rejection as it could incapacitate a person and thus “likely to be a public charge” (LPC). It is possible that there
were so many immigrants needing to be examined that they simply had to wait three days for Alfredo to be
examined. There is also the possibility that he was simply sick and needed three days to recover, and perhaps
admitted to the 125-bed hospital. If the Board of Special Inquiry suspected that the Paolini family would
140
become a public charge should Alfredo be incapacitated or die, they might have requested evidence that
Beatrice could be supported. Perhaps a telegram was sent to Don Francesco requesting assurance that he
would be responsible for the Paolini family.
Obviously there was a happy ending as Alfredo was given a medical certification as noted: (“Dr. Cert.”).
The next column indicates the name of the doctor (“English”) and the next three columns indicate the date of
the hearing (“6/5") as June 5 ; the page number of the recording secretary/stenographer’s notebook; and the
th
initials of the recording secretary; and the time of day (“3 "). The final three columns for which there are
05
entries “21, 28, and 21" indicate the number of meals–breakfast, lunch and dinner– had by Paolini family for
which the steamship company would have been charged. Companies were charged by the Bureau of
Immigration for delays and deportations as an incentive for applying standards meant to reduce the number of
rejected immigrants.
141
Ellis Island was known both as the ‘Island of Hope’ and the ‘Island of Tears’ depending upon whether or
not a would-be immigrant was admitted. For Alfredo, it had been a degrading process to be poked and
prodded, forced to wait in long queues, asked embarrassing and demeaning questions, examined for illnesses
and deformities, all by immigration authorities who were probably impatient and brusque given the enormity
of their task. To Beatrice and to the children, this was the ‘Island of Hope.’ She was grateful for the food
142
provided during their detention, and because they were admitted to the United States of America on June 5,
1906. Their line number of the manifest were duly stamped “ADMITTED.”
Hamblin, op.cit.
140
Explanation of annotations on manifests found in article entitled, “Record of Aliens Held for Special
141
Inquiry,” http://www.jewishgen.org/InfoFiles/Manifests/bsi/
Approximately 5,000 émigrés were processed each day. Hamlin, op.cit.
142
-103-
On to Chicago
To leave the island, they would have taken a ferry to the mainland, either Manhattan or New Jersey, and
then a train to Chicago. Quite probably they telegraphed Don Francesco in Chicago as to when they would
arrive, as it was planned that he should meet them at the train station. It is not know whether it was at Ellis
Island or at the train station, most probably the latter, that they lost Arturo in the crowd and confusion of
boarding; and so they missed their train. The travel time to Chicago was about eighteen hours, and there were
only two trains per day. Thus they did not arrive as scheduled, and no one was there to meet them at the
143
station when they did arrive.
Having no means of contacting Don Francesco on short notice, there being no telephones at this time,
and not knowing how to reach his residence, they found transportation with the Parmelee Transfer Service, a
company that carried baggage by horse drawn carriage from one train station to another, for in those days, each
railroad company had its own station. Again Alfredo found himself in the demeaning and undignified position
of sitting in the back of a baggage carriage and being paraded for all to see through the streets of Chicago.
One has to admire Beatrice for her fortitude and endurance during this journey of at least 17 days. She
had to shepherd four small boys, a senile mother-in-law, and a disgruntled husband while being four and a half
months pregnant.
Blowup of left side of Paolini family
Special Inquiry Sheet listing Paolini family
Blowup of right side of Paolini family
“Railraod Speed: Notable Fast runs of Passenger Trains for Long Distances,” The World Almanac &
143
Book of Facts, Facts on File, Inc., p. 242. “Chicago Passenger Stations,”
http://www.ominousweather.com/ChicagoRailCapital.html
-104-
-105-
Chapter 10
Donato Del Grande
I knew exactly where he was entombed. I had seen the vault with my own eyes. He rests in the same vault
as Don Francesco in the little mausoleum that also contains Don Francesco’s wife, Gemma Castricone, and another
son who predeceased his father, Ungaro (Hugo) Tarquinio Del Grande. The mausoleum is in Mount Carmel
Cemetery in Hillside, Illinois.
Donato Del Grande died on January 6, 1909 of endocarditis, an infection of the lining of the heart chambers
and heart valves.
144
The only other evidence of Donato Del Grande is an entry on a manifest of the ship Regina d'Italia, that
embarked from Naples, Italy and arrived at the Port of New York on October 24, 1908. It states that he was four
years of age. Also listed on the manifest is Franc. Del Grande, age thirty-one. Under the heading of “whence alien
145
came” is the name “Grazia Del Grande,” who is known to be a sister of Don Francesco. Strangely enough, the last
permanent address is given as “Aquila”–not Italy–while the town is, as expected, “Popoli.” In the last column of the
second page, under “Place of Birth,” is entered: Utica, N.Y.
My initial interpretation of his manifest was that Donato was immigrating. Don Francesco had immigrated
twelve years prior in 1896; his wife and other children born in Italy had immigrated in 1898. If Donato was born in
America, why had his supposed father taken him on a trip to Italy when he was only six years old? If he was
immigrating, that is, coming to America for the first time, how could he have been conceived and born in Italy as Don
Francesco and Gemma were in America? I could only hypothesize that Donato was the son of someone else,
probably a relative. Perhaps he was the child of an unwed mother who wished to save him the embarrassment of
being an illegitimate child; or perhaps the mother or family were too poor to keep him. On the other hand, I knew
that Grazia Del Grande and her husband, Camillo Di Giulio, were childless and wanted a child; they surely would have
adopted Donato. I had no hypotheses that explained the immigration of this child.
In my initial phase of genealogical research, my mother had listed the children of Don Francesco and
Gemma, and she included Dante, perhaps an Americanization of Donato. She believe that Donato was about age
twelve when he died. Soon thereafter, my genealogical researcher in L’Aquila, Italy reported the birth record of a
Donato Del Grande, born in 1887. She also reported an entry on a ship’s manifest, the Manilla, that had arrived at
the Port of New York on June 8, 1901, bearing Donato Del Grande, age 13, from Popoli. Was this Donato the son of
Don Francesco and Gemma? I decided to label him Donato#1, and the one that arrived in 1908 as Donato#2.
I then obtained a copy of Don Francesco’s passport application, dated 21 August 1907 in which he stated:
I, Francesco Paolo Del Grande, a NATURALIZED AND LOYAL CITIZEN OF THE UNITED STATES, do hereby apply
to the Department of State at Washington for a passport for myself and wife and my minor children as
follows: minor child Donato Del Grande born at Popoli “Italy, on the 7 day of July 1903...
th
The Undertaker's Report of Death for Danato Del Grante (sic) issued by the Bureau of Vital
144
Statistics, Department of Health, City of Chicago states, January 6, 1909.
He was actually six years old at the time of his voyage.
145
-106-
So rather than Utica, New York as stated on the manifest, Don Francesco was stating that Donato was born at Popoli,
Italy. From the 1910 census, it is recorded that Gemma bore eleven children, seven of whom were still living. By my
records of date of births and deaths [which was incorrect at the time], I accounted for all the children save one; and
so I continued to hold my hypothesis that Donato was not the child of Don Francesco and Gemma.
I then began to search for birth records, both civil records and baptismal records in churches in Popoli, Italy
and in Utica, New York. No civil record was found in Popoli nor in Utica. I wrote to the parish priest in Popoli but
“niente.” I obtained a list of churches in Utica and located them on a map of the city along with the residences of the
Del Grande family in an attempt to determine their parish church which I concluded to be either St. Mary of Mt.
Carmel or St. Anthony of Padua. I contacted each but neither had a record of a baptism for Donato Del Grande.
I considered the possibility that Donato was born in Chicago, the final residence of the Del Grande. I was
especially hopeful that I would find a baptismal record at Holy Guardian Angels church in Chicago because my father
was baptized at this church in 1908, only four or five years after the birth of Donato. The church had been
demolished in the late 1950's in order to allow the expansion of the Illinois Medical Center; but its records were held
by the Archdiocese of Chicago; and so I requested a search of their records for which I received the following
response:
Dear Mr. Paolini,
This office recently received your email of April 5. I checked the baptism records for Holy Guardian
Angeles from 1903 to 1905 and found nothing. It is possible that if the child was born in Italy, it was
baptized there as well.
I searched the parish for death records and found that none existed from 1903 to 1930.
Sincerely,
Julie A. Satzik
Assistant Research Archivist
Archdiocese of Chicago's Joseph Cardinal Bernardin Archives and Records Center
I had hit the proverbial brick wall.
By this time in my genealogical research of the Del Grande and Paolini families, I was ordering microfilm of
records from the Family History Library of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (Mormons), mainly the
Registri dello stato civile 1809-1910 for Popoli, Italy. If the Mormons were microfilming records of churches in Italy,
might they also have microfilmed records of Italian churches in America. Indeed they had! I had intended to contact
the churches in the Italian section of Chicago where the Del Grande and Paolini family had resided, but now I could
examine the records myself and not ask the indulgence of church officials who had better things to do than look up
records a hundred years old. Best of all, these records would be written in English.
I ordered the film for the church Our Lady of Pompeii and Notre Dame de Chicago. The catalogue also listed
film for Holy Guardian Angels. At first I demurred as I had already checked this source through the Archdiocese; but
after a few weeks I thought, “Why not? It’s only $5.50” I ordered the film.
I received a call from the local Family History Center that the film had arrived, and so I walked into the
Center at about 8:00pm that evening, only to be told, “We’re closing early tonight.” I was obviously somewhat upset
and disappointed, but I started my search through the films. I found no records of the Del Grande nor the Paolini in
other films.
-107-
The records of Holy Guardian Angels had an index that was unusual but logical: alphabetical and then by
year. I started with the year 1904 and found no entry for Donato, so I then began systematically going through each
year.
About 8:30pm, the staff and other patrons began to leave, but a new staff member had arrived. He was
there to install new software on each of the computers, and it would take him quite a while. He said that I could stay
until he left; and so I continued my search long past the normal closing hour of 9:00pm..
I found no entry in the index for Donato, and so I scanned through the individual, handwritten entries,
usually five or six per page. Again, no result. I decided to abandon my effort, but since I had the film, I thought that I
would look for the entry for my father, Attilio Paolini. I turned the crank of the microfilm to scroll forward. I reached
the end, but the entries did not extend to 1908. Then I thought that I would look for the entry for my aunt Amelia
who was born in 1906. I twirled the crank in reverse and stopped. Since there were no demarcations by year, I had
to read an entry to determine the year for the entries in that area of the film: Not back far enough. Whirl, whirl!
Another check: not far enough. Whirl, whirl! I picked an entry a random to determine the year. I read:
I was stunned–transfixed. I starred at the record for at least a minute. I had found him, and yet I had
difficulty believing it. All those hypotheses and systematic searches, and in the end, I found him by pure chance.
I decided to make a copy of the image of the page, and so I had to switched the film to another machine. I’m
sure I had a rather dazed look on my face. I was tremulous and I couldn’t think straight causing me to fumble in
threading the film into the machine. The technician installing the software must have recognized my look. “Find
something,” he asked. “Yes,” I replied, my voice somewhat shaky. “I’ve been searching for this child for over two
years, and tonight I found him.” “He wanted to be found,” said the technician.
I was overjoyed with my finding. I concluded that Donato had been born and baptized in Chicago, and so I
put the matter to rest. About six months later, I started writing this history of the Del Grande and Paolini families,
and I carefully noted the dates of marriages and relocations. Gilda was married in 1902, and Angiolina was married
in 1903; and by newspaper accounts, Don Francesco had attended the weddings. It would have been a long trip back
to Utica for those occasions. I had also read about baptisms: some denominations believe that infants should be
baptized while others believe it should be delayed until the age of accountability. In reviewing the records of
baptisms in the Registri dello Stato Civile for Popoli, I noted that there were intervals of several months and even
years between birth and baptism. Lastly, in the beginning stage of my search for the birthplace of Donato, I had
requested a search of the birth records of Cook County which included the city of Chicago: no record had been
found. In short, I suspected that while he was baptized in Chicago, he was born in Utica. Now, at least, I had a date
of birth on which to focus a search. The new date was two years earlier than the previously used date.
Entry for the Baptism of Donato Del Grande
-108-
I requested a search by the Registrar of Vital Statistics of the city of Utica. Within a week, my hunch was
confirmed. Donato was born January 22, 1902 in Utica, New York.
It is likely that Don Francesco returned to Italy in order to accomplish some business transaction, possibly
the sale of his house (and possibly his shop) as his family resided there for two years after his departure. It still is a
mystery to me as to why Don Francesco would take his six year old son on a visit to Italy.
-109-
Chapter 11
The Early Years in Chicago
"I have struck a city–a real city–and they call it Chicago...Having seen it, I
urgently desire never to see it again. It is inhabited by savages."
Rudyard Kipling, cc. 1900
Americanization of Italian Names
At some point in their lifetime, most Italians adopted an “American sounding name.” Hereafter, I will
use the name that my ancestors called themselves with the exception of Francesco Paolo Del Grande whom I
will continue to call Don Francesco.
Italian Name American Name Nickname
Del Grande Family
Francesco Paolo Frank Chico Paolo
Gemma Gemma
Gilda Gilda
Angiolina Angeline
Ungaro Hugo
Carlo Alberto Albert
Italia Arminda Lillian Lily; Sister Wilma
Donato Donato possibly Dante
Paolini Family
Ildebrando Alfredo Alfredo
Beatrice Beatrice Bice (Bee-chay)
Armando Armando
Adolfo Adolph
Arturo Arthur
Aldo Aldo
Attilio (I) Attilio
Amelia Emily
Attilio (II) Otto Ottie (Aah-Tee)
Donato Donato
Angiola Angelina
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Italian Enclaves
As in Utica, Italian immigrants had proceeded the Del Grande and Paolini families and had coalesced
in some twenty neighborhoods, both in and around the city of Chicago. The largest of these enclaves was
146
on the near west side relative to the downtown area and was called ‘Little Italy’ or ‘Taylor Street.’ This
147
Italian section started on the west side of the South Branch of the Chicago River, and over time, it spread
westward. The area was bounded by Harrison Street on the north and Roosevelt Road (12 street) on the
th
south, and eventually reached Ashland Avenue on the west. It was roughly coincident with the 19 ward
th
(see map) and had an Italian population of about 15,000 by the 1920s. For a description of the in and
148
around the area, see appendix C: Ethnic Territories of the Near West Side.
The Del Grande moved often as they did in Utica as shown in the following table:
Date Indicated on
Document Address Source of Data
26 Jan 1902 247 W. Polk Street Baptismal record of Donato Del
Grande
26 Sep 1906 210 W. Taylor Street Naturalization card of Francesco
Paolo Del Grande
21 Aug 1907 388 S. Halsted Street Passport application of Francesco
Paolo Del Grande
24 Oct 1908 127* Vernon Park Place Manifest of Regina d’Italia;
Francesco Paolo and Donato
22 Apr 1910 1114 Vernon Park Place 1910 U.S. Census
149
1910-1920 921 S. Wenonah Avenue, Oak
Park, Illinois
1920 U.S. Census
*The streets of Chicago were renumbered in 1909. Thus the addresses of 127 and 1114 Vernon Park Place are for the
same house.
150, 151
“Italians,” Encyclopedia of Chicago.
146
http://www.encyclopedia.chicagohistory.org/pages/658.html
During the 1920s, the Social Science Research Committee at the University of Chicago designated
147
seventy-five areas of the city as communities based on common social characteristics, such as ethnicity, race,
religion, and income. These community names and boundaries have not changed and thus do not reflect the
characteristics of the population of the areas since that time. The community containing the Italian section
was and is called the Near West Side.
Pero, Peter N., Images of America: Chicago Italians at Work, Arcadia Publishing, Chicago, 2009, p. 9.
148
Also listed at the same address are Oliver and Conado De Granditz (probably De Grandis which is a
149
common surname in Popoli; also in the 1910 city directory are listed four Del Grande: Antonio, Conado, Frank
and Olive, all with the occupation of tailor.
“Rationalization of Streets,” Encyclopedia of Chicago,
150
http://www.encyclopedia.chicagohistory.org/pages/410052.html
Plan of Re-Numbering City of Chicago: Table Showing New and Old House Numbers, August, 1909, p. 161.
151
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The Taylor Street area was never exclusively Italian as indicated by the names on the census
152
sheets. Its population was quite mobile, and as one ethnic group moved into the area, the older, former
ethnic group moved out, though a few residents of the older group remained. As residents became more
153
prosperous, they moved further west, both within the area and to outlying areas. This western movement is
illustrated by the relocations of the Del Grande [and the Paolini family] within the Near North Side,
culminating in their final settlement in Oak Park, Illinois, a town adjacent to the western border of Chicago.
Oak Park had, and still has, a significant Italian population.
These Italian neighborhoods attracted compaesani, that is, people from the same village or at least
the same region of Italy. For example, the Near North Side was mainly settled by Sicilians while the Taylor
Street area was settled mainly by Italians from the South: Naples, Salerno, Bari, Messina, Palermo, Abruzzo,
Calabria, Basilicata, the Marche, and Lucca.
154
Having been poor in Italy, and having spent most of their savings for their passage, the Italian
immigrants were extremely poor. As most were unskilled and illiterate workers, they had to take the
toughest and meanest jobs. They worked long hours and under poor conditions for small wages.
Consequently they resided in the neighborhoods that afforded the most inexpensive housing which was the
most run-down and poorly maintained.
At the time, Chicago in general, was not a city beautiful:
"According to English journalist William T. Stead, who lived in the city for five months (until
March 1894), ‘The first impression which a stranger receives on arriving in Chicago is that of the
dirt, the danger, and the inconvenience of the streets.'"
155
Taylor Street was described in a newspaper article of March 30, 1893, under the headline, "Foul
Ewing Street: Italian Quarter that Invites Cholera and Other Diseases:”
156
The street is lined with irregular rows of dingy frame houses; innocent of paint and blackened
and soiled by time and close contact with the children of Italy. The garbage boxes along the
broken wood sidewalks are filled with ashes and rotting vegetables and are seldom emptied.
Heaps of trash, rags, and old fruit are alongside the garbage boxes already overflowing. The
The area was also called by the intersecting streets in the center of the Italian population: Halsted
152
and Taylor or just Taylor Street.
Candeloro, Dominic Lawrence, Chicago's Italians: Immigrants, Ethnics, Americans, The Making of
153
America Series, Arcadia Publishing, Chicago, 2003, p. 16.
Ibid, p. 22.
154
Nelli, Humbert, The Italians in Chicago: A Study in Ethnic Mobility, Oxford University Press, New
155
York, 1970, p. 9.
Ewing Street was later named West Cabrini Street and ran between Gilpin Place and Polk Street
156
according to a website that pictures a sculpture of a child and flowers on the exterior of the Mary Crane Day
Nursery building, located at 782 Ewing Street. The nursery was part of the Hull House Settlement.
[Photographs from the Chicago Daily News, 1902-1933.
http://memory.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/S?ammem/cdn:@field%28SUBJ+@od1%28782+Ewing+Street++Chica
go,+Ill+++%29%29
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dwelling houses and big tenement buildings that line Ewing Street are occupied by thousands of
Italians. Every doorstep is well alive with children and babies dressed in rags and grime, many of
their olive skinned faces showing sallow and wan beneath the covering of dirt....Some of the dark
complexioned men sit around tables through the day time hours and gamble at cards or dice with
huge mugs of beer beside them.”
157
It was not uncommon for Chicago newspapers to exaggerate and use plaintive and demeaning
language in describing the Italian neighborhoods, ascribing the refuse and crudely built dwellings to ethnic
characteristics. The Chicago Herald stated, for example, that “it is not abject poverty which causes such
nasty and cheap living; it is simply an imported habit from Southern Italy.”
158
There is little doubt that Italian immigrants lived in over-crowded housing with poor sanitation:
The Near West Side contained some of the worst housing in the city. Structures facing the street
(most of them brick and three stories high) were unsoundly constructed, inadequately lighted,
poorly ventilated and dangerously overcrowded. Owners and managers utilized all available space
for living purposes. Each floor (including the basement) generally contained two apartments of
four rooms each, although the district also provided many one- and two-room apartments. Each
apartment, in turn, housed one or more families, and frequently lodgers or boarders as well who
shared kitchen and bedroom facilities. Inhabitants often ate and slept in shifts.
159
In the same vein:
A survey by the Commissioner of Labor in 1892-93 studied conditions in the district bounded by
Halsted, Newberry, State, Polk, and Twelfth streets, an area containing a large Italian element. The
Commissioner reported serious overcrowding in tenements, high rents for inferior housing, barely adequate
sanitary conditions, and extremely poor social relationships.
160
Indeed, Taylor Street must not have been a pleasant place at this period. Alfredo certainly thought
so as he expressed his disgust. The great Chicago Fire of 1871 supposedly had started in Mrs. O’Leary’s barn
at 137 DeKoven was in the southeastern section of the 19 ward and probably about six blocks from the
th
house at 127/1114 Vernon Park Place. It had occurred not less than thirty-five years prior, and there were
still vacant lots, burned abandon buildings, unpaved streets, and only wooden sidewalks in some places.
Overall, Taylor Street could only be viewed as somewhat disheveled and desolate, and so Alfredo thought
they had come to an uncivilized place.
Ibid, p. 22.
157
“In an Italian Patch,” Chicago Herald, July 16, 1887, as found in Nelli, Humbert, The Italians in
158
Chicago, p. 11.
Jane Addams, "The Housing Problem in Chicago," Annals, XX (July, 1902), pp. 99-103 as found in
159
Nelli, Italians in Chicago, 1880-1930, pp. 33-34.
U.S. Commissioner of Labor, Seventh Special Report, and Ninth Special Report. The Italians in
160
Chicago, a Social and economic Study (1897) as found in Nelli, Italians in Chicago, 1880-1930, p. 13.
-113-
Chicago
Near 12th & Jefferson Street circa 1906
www.publishing.cdlib.org
http://reference.findtarget.com/search/Little%20I
taly,%20Chicago/
Quotation from an Italian immigrant upon reflection of
his immigration to America: ”When I was coming to this
country, I was told that the streets were paved with gold.
When I arrived, I learned three things: One, the streets
weren’t paved with gold; second, the streets weren’t
paved; third, I was expected to pave them!”
Courtesy of Taylor Street Archives
www.taylorstreetarchives.com
Courtesy of Taylor Street Archives
www.taylorstreetarchives.com
Parmelee Transfer truck
F. Parmalee & Co.
http://www.coachbuilt.com/bui/p/parmelee/parmele
e.htm
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-115-
19 Ward (circa 1915) encompassing ‘Little Italy’Addresses for Map of 19 Ward
th th
In Chicago, even numbered addresses for North/South streets is on the West side of the street and for
West/East streets it's on the South side of the street.
Del Grande Addresses
210 W. Taylor Street
388 (now 923) S. Halsted Street
247 W. Polk Street
127/1114 Vernon Park Place (renumbered in
1909)
Paolini Addresses
127/1114 Vernon Park Place
635 S. Centre (Racine) Avenue
1209 Gilpin Place (formerly Ewing; now St.
Cabrini)
1423 Plum (Flournoy) Street
1739 W. Polk Street
5232 W. Altgeld Street
Institutions
The Shrine of Our Lady of Pompeii
1224 Macalister Place (now W. Lexington St.)
Chicago, Illinois 60607
Notre Dame de Chicago
1335 West Harrison Street
Chicago, IL 60607
(312) 243-7400
Holy Guardian Angel
178 Forquer Street (renumbered 717 in 1909)
Hull House 800 South Halsted Street in 1856
Columbus Hospital Extension (now St. Cabrini
Hospital)
Entrance formerly at 1220 Gilpin Place; now at
811 S. Lytle Street
Chicago, IL 60607
McLaren Elementary School
1500 Flournoy Street
Chicago, IL 60607 US
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By most definitions and characteristics, the area was a slum. What is starling is that most newspaper
reports and social commentators, including some reformers with advanced college degrees, seem not to
have a clue as to why immigrants in general, for Italians weren’t the only residents of the area, lived as they
did. First, they wanted to be among residents with whom they could communicate, that is, speak Italian, and
who could help them deal with the normal transactions of living: finding a job, finding a place to stay, buying
food, clothing and furniture, finding a doctor, etc.
Second, they need to live near their job in order to reduce the time and cost of travel. At the turn of
the century, Taylor Street bordered the factories along the South Branch of the Chicago River where most of
the Taylor Street residents had employment.
Third, they couldn’t afford housing for only one family, and so they could expend less money by
sharing an apartment with other families.
The enclave served as a staging area in which the immigrants became acclimated and
“Americanized” while accumulating resources to improve their situation. Immigrants were not unaware of
the housing conditions under which they lived. When they had learned how to find their own way in the
city, and they had accumulated sufficient resources, they relocated to better housing which explains the
high rate of mobility, not just of the Del Grande and Paolini families, but of the most single persons and
families. While the Italian community of Taylor Street seemed stable, or more negatively stated, not
improving, the opposite was true. There was a constant relocation of residents both within the area and
outward to other areas while new Italian immigrants took their place. Reformers and social critics often
despaired as they saw no improvement, which was true of the area but not true of the people who, as they
prospered and/or followed employment opportunities, left the area.
While mobility reflected movement from an undesirable neighborhood and housing to one that was
more pleasant, less crowded and with better accommodations, the daily commute to jobs dictated one’s
relocation. In the decades after 1900, improved and expanded mass transportation facilities, first surface
street cars and then elevated trains, made it possible for the lower income class to live beyond walking
distance.
Housing and Family Expansion
When the Paolini family arrived in 1906, they moved in with the Del Grande family. At this time,
161
the Del Grande family consisted of Don Francesco, Gemma, Hugo, Albert and Lily. The Paolini family
consisted of Alfredo, Beatrice, Angelina, Armando, Adolph, Arthur, and Aldo; Emily was born four and a half
months later in October. Thus there were five adults and eight children in the household. No doubt that it
was crowded, a common complaint of immigrants by those who are well-established and able to afford
ample accommodations. However, it was not a violation of a zoning ordinance: the city didn’t have one.
162
Personal conversations with the author’s father, Attilio (Otto) Paolini.
161
The city adopted its first zoning ordinance in 1923. The Encyclopedia of Chicago: Zoning,
162
http://encyclopedia.chicagohistory.org/pages/1401.html
-117-
Two years later in 1908, Otto Paolini was born. His birth certificate states the family’s address was
127 Vernon Park Place, which is the same house as the Del Grande family. Thus another member was added
to the household. Thirty-two years later in 1941, at the outset of World War II, my father had to register for
the draft, and he had to obtain a copy of his birth certificate at city hall. In the process of making the request
for the document, the clerk mentioned his “twin sister.” He knew full well that he didn’t have one, and so
inquired of his mother as to what might have happened. She explained that, unlike today when most births
take place in a hospital, in those days the birth of a child took place in the home and delivered by a mid-wife.
The mid-wife was suppose to register the birth. It was surmised that she forgot to register Emily’s birth in
1906, and so when she went to the registrar’s office to report the birth of Otto, she also reported the birth of
Emily but was unable to make clear–probably not having great command of the English language–the fact
that Emily had been born two years prior. Their births were recorded as happening at the same time, that is,
as twins.
Beatrice was about five feet tall, but all of her children were born late and of abnormally large size.
Otto was over twelve pounds at delivery! Such large-baby births are recognized now as a sign of a
163
pre-diabetic condition which Beatrice did develop in her later years.
One wonders whether or not such crowded conditions imposed a stress on the adults, particularly
Alfredo, who was use to having his own place and being the head of the household in Naples. He was also
the proprietor of his own business and a craftsman at his trade. Now he resided in the house of his father-in-
law, and he probably worked in a factory doing routine, piecemeal tasks rather than making an entire
garment. His actual working conditions are unknown, but before 1910, there was no union of garment
workers, and thus the garment manufacturers were able to extort their employees. One writer described the
length of the workday as an explanation for the creation of the union:
"Since their take-home earnings in season for a 56- to 72-hour (6 day) week averaged around $3,
it's not surprising that workers began organizing the Garment Workers and the Amalgamated
Clothing Workers with a strike in 1910."
164
Alfredo went to work each day while Beatrice stayed home with the children. She said that each day,
when it was time for him to come home, she would be cooking dinner and constantly looking out the
window in order to see him coming so as to assess whether or not he was in a terrible mood–which he
usually was. When he brought home his first earnings and dropped the money on the table, he curtly
remarked, "I earned this much in Italy." Beatrice retorted, "In Italy, you worked, I worked, and your mother
worked to earn this much money."
No more than 5' 6", he often quipped that he had his growth spurt in the womb.
163
Candeloro, Chicago's Italians, p. 13.
164
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By the time of the 1910 census, the Paolini family had moved to their own apartment at 635 S.
165
Centre Avenue, since then renamed Racine Avenue. In December 1909, they had their
166 167
eighth child, a boy named Donato. It should have been a happy time with an optimistic outlook; but it was
not to be.
Family Losses
Beatrice said that Alfredo suffered severe headaches and high blood pressure; and his temperament
didn't help his condition. The stroke left him with a slight limp and mentally impaired at times, even
paranoid, to the extent that he went to the Italian consulate in Chicago and told the officials that he wanted
to return to Italy but that his wife and mother were preventing him. Apparently the Chicago police were
called, and Beatrice was summoned. She explained that her husband had suffered a stroke, that he was ill,
and not of sound mind. Consequently, no further action was taken by the authorities.
The next incident was probably decisive for Alfredo: he came at Beatrice with scissors. One report is
that he did not harm her, but Carol Jean Sirimarco recalls that her Aunt Ann (Angelina Sirimarco) related the
incident, saying that Beatrice had been working on her sister’s (Maria Ines Del Grande) wedding dress at the
time, and that he did stab her with the scissors and hurt her quite badly. No other details of the incident are
known except that Alfredo was confined to an institution for a period of time. He hated being confined, of
course, and appealed to Beatrice to have him released to her care. With her great forbearance, she had him
released, and he returned home. For how long is not known.
Whether he despaired of his situation, and/or realized that he was a danger to
his own family, he took his own life. His straight-razor had been withheld from him,
but he asked his mother for it, and she acceded, but failed to stay and watch him. He
slit his own throat. His daughter Emily found him ‘sleeping'. "He won't wake up,” she
announced to the family. Emily later recalled that he warmly embraced her not long
before he took his life as he always showed great affection for her. Ildebrando Alfredo
Paolini died September 4, 1910 at the age of 44.
My father regaled me with the many stories of his childhood throughout his life, yet he never
mentioned how his father died. The story was revealed by my Aunt Emily and confirmed by the coroner’s
report.
1910; Census Place: Chicago Ward 19, Cook, Illinois; Roll: T624_261; Page: 1B; Enumeration
165
District: 1579; Image: 273. The exact date of the interview with the Paolini family was April 27, 1910.
This is the same address as that of Antonio Sirimarco and his wife, Maria Ines Del Grande as
166
recorded in the 1910 census. There were fifteen households at this address and so it must have been a
tenement building.
Newman, Scott A., [Map of] Central Chicago and the Loop District: Chicago, Illinois, 1907-1917,
167
copyright 2006. http://www.jazzagechicago.com/
-119-
Inquest No. 55848, upon the body of Alfredo Paolini County of Cook, State of Illinois, on the 8
th
day of September 1910
VERDICT: The said Alfredo Paolini now lying dead at County Morgue in said City of Chicago
County of Cook, State of Illinois, came to his death on the4th day of Sept. A.D. 1910. In the Cook
County Hospital. From shock & hemorrage (sic) due to external violence, self inflicted, cut in his throat with a razor on
Sept. 3rd 1910 in house 635 Centre Ave, from the evidence offered at Cook County Morgue in the City of Chicago
suicidal. while the deceased was in a deranged state of mind.
At the time of his death, the local Catholic church at first refused to have a mass for him nor allow
him to be buried in "sacred ground," because he had committed suicide. The policy of the Catholic Church
was and is well established:
That suicide is unlawful is the teaching of Holy Scripture and of the Church, which condemns the act as a
most atrocious crime and, in hatred of the sin and to arouse the horror of its children, denies the suicide
Christian burial.
Further, Christian burial is to be refused to suicides (this prohibition is as old as the fourth century; cf.
Cassian in P.L., XL, 573) except in case that the act was committed when they were of unsound mind or
unless they showed signs of repentance before death occurred.
168
Beatrice appealed the initial ruling and convinced the church authorities that Alfredo was ill and not
responsible for his actions, and so they finally relented. He was interred with ecclesiastical rites in the
consecrated ground of Mount Carmel Cemetery, a Roman Catholic cemetery located in the Chicago suburb of
Hillside, Illinois.
Alfredo’s life and death reminds us of the stanza in a poem of A.E. Housman which might serve as his
epitaph:
And how am I to face the odds
Of man's bedevilment and God's?
I, a stranger and afraid
In a world I never made.
May peace be upon him.
A month later, on October 21, 1910, Donato Paolini, their youngest son, died at the age of nine
months.
New Advent: The Catholic Encyclopedia,
168
http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/14326b.htm
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The Courage of Beatrice
The tragedy of these two events must have been crushing for the family. For Beatrice, it must have
been that and more. Alfredo may have been peevish and self-centered, but he was the head of the household
who provided an income, and, by his mere presence, a sense of family and stability. Now her children had
no father–no one to serve as a male role model and to protect and guide them, especially the boys. The loss
of a second child would have aroused the memory of the lost of the first Attilio to double the pain. These
were two losses that could leave a person numb and wanting to withdraw from the world. At age thirty-one,
Beatrice Paolini had no income, no job, six children ranging in ages from two to thirteen, and an aging and
somewhat senile mother-in-law. A lesser woman would have despaired and possibly surrendered.
Beatrice sat alone at her kitchen table and took the money from her purse -- $6.00 was all she had in
the world. She said to herself, "I have $6.00 here - $1.00 for each child, and I'll never ask anyone for a dollar
again."
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Chapter 12
The Discovery of Donato Paolini
In writing this chapter, I wanted to identify the addresses at which the Paolini family resided, and I
realized that I did not have the family’s census sheet for the year 1910. In the initial stage of my genealogical
research, I used the fourteen-day free subscription from Ancestry.com to search and retrieve census data for
various ancestors, but I had not found one for the Paolini family for 1910 and decided to do without it. Now I was
a fully-paid subscriber, and so I renewed my search.
After entering known search criteria, such as name, age, nationality, and location, Ancestry.com retrieves
the records that are ‘close’ matches. About the fiftieth name listed was ‘Alfreds Pauline.’ I didn’t immediately
recognize ‘Alfreds’ as a possible transliteration of ‘Alfredo’, but I thought it worth pursuing, and so I examined the
image of the census sheet. Indeed the Paolini family was listed, albeit with transcription errors: Alfreds, Bessie
(for Beatrice), Amando, Adolph, Arthur, Ado, Amelia, Atthtis, Donat, Ayyda (Angiola or Angelina). Obviously the
person who had done the transcription was not familiar with Italian names. [I entered corrections to each of the
names so that any future searches will retrieve the census record.]
“Why was Donato listed,” I wondered– thinking he was Donato Del Grande. Perhaps he was in the daily
care of Beatrice since she had young children–Emily and Otto–and perhaps Gemma was working outside the
home, though I never heard that she did. Then I realized the sequence of dates: the year was 1910. Donato Del
Grande died in 1909! Obviously it wasn’t him. My mind reeled. Did I have a ‘new’ uncle? In the past six months,
I had been finding new cousins which I knew must have existed, but to discover a ‘new’ uncle was astonishing.
I read the entry for his age: “5/12". The census was taken on April 27, 1910, so Donato must have been
born in December 1909 or January 1910. My father always claimed that he was the baby of the family, and so he
must not have known, or at least forgot about this younger brother. There was only one inescapable conclusion:
Donato had died at a very early age.
About a year prior to this discovery, my mother and I had traveled to Mount Carmel Cemetery in Hillside,
Illinois in order to visit the grave site of the Paolini family. Marked by a large granite tombstone are buried:
Alfredo, Beatrice, and Aldo. On each side of the tombstone is an urn (see photograph). I recalled reading the
symbolism of the urn as a grave marker. Researching the computerized files of the cemetery, we discovered
169
‘Baby Zickgraff,’ born of Emily Paolini and Charles Zickgraff and who had lived only ten minutes according to the
burial records. In E-mail correspondence with the cemetery’s administrative staff, the burial notation is
170
explained:
Keister, Douglas, Stories in Stone: A Field Guide to Cemetery Symbolism and Iconography, MJF Books,
169
New York, 2004, p. 137.
E-mail from Susana Vazquez, Susana, Queen of Heaven & Mount Carmel Cemetery, sent: Monday,
170
August 10, 2009 9:46 AM.
-122-
Mount Carmel Cemetery: Grave WT2; Lot S18; Block 7; Section 23. WT2 means West Top of
grave 2. Usually when it dealt with babies they listed which part of the grave the baby was buried
in since they didn’t occupy the whole grave.
There was no mention of a second child in that previous correspondence. I now sent an E-mail of inquiry to the
Mount Carmel with the specific name of Donato Paolini. Within ten minutes, I received the following reply:
From: Susan Vazquez [mailto:SVazquez@queen.cathcemchgo.org]
Sent: Thursday, November 18, 2010 4:35 PM
Subject: RE: Donato Paolini
Mr. Paolini,
I am showing a Donato Parolina (sic) interred on this lot he was buried on October 24, 1910 at the age of
9 months. I am guessing it is the baby you are inquiring about just an incorrect last name. Thank You.
The Certificate and Record of Death states that Donato Paolini, born January 18, 1910, died October 21,
1910 of chronic gastroenteritis.

My father was only about fifteen months old when Donato was born, and a little less than two years old
when he died; it is not unexpected that he would not remember his younger brother if he was even aware of him.
It is likely that this tragedy was never mentioned by his brothers and sister for fear of upsetting their mother.
*****
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Chapter 13
Work and Play
Beatrice Becomes Head of the Family
After Alfredo's death, Beatrice did receive some welfare funds for the care of the children, either
from the city or the county. It was very little, especially since the welfare case worker was pocketing part
of the money.
Her main concern was the care of her children as she needed to work
and earn money to support the family. She consulted her parents who advised
her to put the children in an orphanage. She was urged to do the same by
Mother Cabrini, who had started an orphanage and apparently wanted to fill
171
it. She suggested to Beatrice that she place all the children in the orphanage of
the Church, but Beatrice refused as she wanted to keep the family together.
Though her mother-in-law was not completely reliable, Angelina provided
justification to keep the children at home as Beatrice could claim that they
were supervised by an adult. Believing that her daughter needed more
protection, she sent Emily to live with her parents, the Del Grande, who had
moved to Oak Park, Illinois.
It is not certain but it is probable that Beatrice began working in a garment factory as a
seamstress, that is, sewing parts of garments using a treadle sewing machine. In this period of time, the
workday was considerably longer than today. She probably had to work about ten hours each weekday
and a half-day on Saturday, but her day started much earlier: getting the children dressed for school,
172
preparing food, and parceling out chores, etc. She then took a streetcar in order to commute to her job.
Not surprisingly, she was sometimes a little late. The work area was on an upper floor, and a part-owner
of the firm, one Mr. Goldstein, would stand at the elevator to identify any late workers and dock their pay.
Even though the workers were probably paid piecework, they could still be penalized. Beatrice could not
afford to lose any money, and so she would run up the backstairs–or possibly it was the outside fire
escape–and a fellow worker would open the door for her. She would quickly assume her position at her
sewing machine as though she had been there for quite some time, much to the puzzlement of Mr.
Goldstein.
Sister Francesca Cabrini
Francesa Saverio Cabrini, aka, Frances Xavier Cabrini, (1850-1917), later canonized.
171
“... the establishment of the 54-hour week, and the payment for overtime work at the rate of time
172
and a half.” Documentary History of the Amalgamated Clothing Workers of America, 1918-1920: Proceedings of
the Fourth Biennial Convention of the Amalgamated Clothing Workers of America, held in Boston,
Massachusettes, May 10 to 15, 1920, p. 51.
-124-
Later on, Beatrice went to work for Alfred Decker & Cohn, a manufacturer of high quality men's
suits. It was a small firm, and she actually worked with Mrs. Decker. The firm prospered and made
Society Brand Clothes. She sewed the buttonholes of the coats, a more skilled job of the clothing trade.
At some point, Beatrice became a forelady, that is, a supervisor of the
seamstresses. There are two contrasting views of foremen/foreladies:
If a worker was too good to lose, but yet showed a tendency
to rebellion and toward arousing the discontent of the others,
he or she would generally be made foreman or forelady.
173
versus:
After the passage of the 10-hour law, for instance, foremen
in several shops managed to evade the law by requiring the
workers to work before and after punching the time clock,
and the workers did not dare complain.
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She obviously knew her trade. When my father was a young
man, he bought a coat for what he thought was a terrific bargain: $17. He
showed it to his mother, and asked, "How much do think I paid for this
coat?" Beatrice examined the coat a moment, turned over the skirt to
look at the lining and then said: "$17."
The Garment Industry and Unionization
The Del Grande and Paolini were typical of the
major social patterns and movements of their time.
Italians were the largest majority of immigrants during
this period, and they also became the largest ethnic group
in the garment industry with the possible exception of
Jews. This industry was a major commercial enterprise of
the time. By the end of the first decade of the 20 century,
th
the garment industry was Chicago's third largest employer
and the single largest employer of women.
As in Naples, socialistic ideas and its political
movement were demanding improved working conditions
for workers. Soon Chicago became a leading center for
organizing the garment workers. Ultimately, the Women's
Trade Union League (organized in Chicago at Hull-House), the Amalgamated Garments Workers, and the
National Garment Workers Union were formed here. A most famous strike occurred from September 22,
1910 to February 18, 1911, sometimes called the Hart, Schaffner, and Marx strike, the company at which
Courtesy of The New York Public
Library. www.nypl.org
Garment Factory Works
at Hart, Schaffner & Marx
Photo courtesy of Carolyn Faber at
www.CarolynFaber.net/blog/
Ibid., p. 24.
173
Ibid.
174
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the strike was mainly directed. It was a massive strike that was started and led by women of diverse
positions in the garment industry, and it demonstrated their ability to organize across ethnic lines in an
industry notorious for low wages and bad conditions.
This Chicago strike marked the start of what
became the Amalgamated Clothing Workers of America
of which Beatrice was an active member. Such activity
was very courageous as she and her family were very
dependent on her job. She did her part on the picket
line. Once, she said, the police harassed them and put
them in the paddy wagon, but then just drove around the
block and let them out rather than putting them in jail.
The results of the strike of 1910 were mixed, but
its primary feature was the establishment of “an
arbitration committee of three to be chosen, for the
purpose of considering adjusting all other grievances,
and their rulings were to be binding.” This seemingly
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small concession was de facto recognition of the union
which was the foundation for an ongoing means of
negotiating and resolving differences such as: arbitration of grievances; union representatives at
grievance hearings; reduction in working hours; standards of pay for positions; limitations in overtime;
union preference of workers. All these rules and standards of behavior between employee and
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employer seem almost “self-event” but in reviewing the conditions of the time, one can appreciate the
legacy of those who fought for worker rights.
While Beatrice and her fellow-workers were successful in organizing the union, working
conditions were never pleasant, but job opportunities were available and wages increased. With the
income she made as forelady, the family lived quite comfortably, even to extent that they were able to buy
a car when my father was in high school. She even had a little money to invest in the stock market, as so
many people did during this prosperous period. She invested in the utility stockholding company
promoted by Samuel Insull. The holding company collapsed during the Great Depression, wiping out the
investment of the 600,000 shareholders. This was a scandal that was in the newspapers for years, and
Insull fled to Greece and then Turkey to escape prosecution. He was extradited back to the United States
by Turkey to face federal prosecution on mail fraud and antitrust charges. He was found not guilty on all
counts. In any event, Beatrice, along with the thousands of others, lost all they put into this stock.
177
Garment Workers Strike (1910)
Ibid. p. 44.
175
Ibid, pp. 69-70.
176
Samuel Insull (1859–1938) was an Anglo-American innovator and investor based in Chicago who
177
was prominent in the development of Edison Electric. He invented the holding company which he controlled,
owning shares in several utilities and railroads. Ironically for Beatrice, he was also responsible also for the
building of the Chicago Civic Opera House in 1929.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Samuel_Insull
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The Paolini on Gilpin Place
About 1912, the Paolini family moved to 1209 Gilpin Place. My father said that it was across the
street from the Columbus Extension Hospital, also known as the Mother Cabrini Hospital at 1220
178 179
Gilpin place. It was here that my father had his famous tricycle incident:
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This incident happened when I was living on Gilpin Place. My godfather and godmother
presented me with a tricycle, and after learning to ride it, I would race up and down the
sidewalk. I noticed that the older boys were riding their bicycles on the street and occasionally
go over the sidewalk curb with the greatest of ease. I had been instructed never to ride my
tricycle in the street, but since in those days there were few automobiles, it didn't seem to me
that there was any danger.
My mother was watching me from our front room window, but because I rode with such
speed (It is amazing how a child of that age could travel so fast!), it was impossible for her to
come outside to warn me not to try to ride the tricycle over the curb. I decided to follow the
older boys with their bicycles and ride over the curb. On down the street, and at full speed, I
hit the curb. Y ou can imagine the result. I landed head first over the tricycle and received two
large black eyes and a large lump on my forehead. My mother's warning was too late. I still
can hear her shouting, "No! No!" It's an experience I'll never forget.
The Passing of Angelina Paolini
It was at this period of time–about 1913-- that Angelina Paolini died. For some years she had
been in poor health and ate very little, so she was just "skin and bones." She died peacefully in her sleep.
It had been Adolph's habit to take a cup of tea with some rum in it to his grandmother in her bed each
morning, and when he went in that morning, he thought she was still sleeping, but then realized she had
passed away. My father recalls the events that followed:
I don't remember very much about my grandmother's funeral, but I do remember
certain parts of it. I noticed one morning that all the family was up unusually early and
talking very quietly and walking around in a confused fashion, so I got up and went to see
what this was all about. When I entered my grandmother's bedroom, I thought she was
asleep but was told that she was dead.
Not to be confused with Columbus Hospital, also founded by Mother Cabrini and her Missionary
178
Sisters of the Sacred Heart in 1905 and located at 2520 N. Lakeview Avenue.
Later known as Mother Cabrini Memorial Hospital, and still later, probably after 1946 when she
179
was canonized, as St. Cabrini Hospital.
Later renamed Cabrini Street.
180
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Several features of the funeral I do remember. I remember the horse-drawn black
buggies (at that time few automobiles were used for funerals) to transport the mourners and
my family to the church service. The next thing I remember was the railroad station. The
Mount Carmel Cemetery was about 30 miles away and at that time places of such a long
distance were reached by railroad. Lastly, I remember the casket on a caisson was drawn
by horses to the grave.
See appendix E: Italian Funeral Customs.
The Del Grande in Oak Park
It is thought that the Del Grande family moved to Oak Park, Illinois after 1910 (they are listed at
1114 Vernon Park Place, Chicago in the 1910 census), and rented a second floor flat of a two-flat building
from friends. My father remembers that the owners of the building gave parties, and at one party, he saw
an elderly man with a very long white beard speaking Italian–something he had not seen before. The
only men he had seen before wearing beards were Jewish.
The Don Francesco had a house built
at 921 South Wenonah Avenue at the cost of
$3,000 according to the building permit. It
was a large, two-story residence–and it had to
be large because it housed Don Francesco,
Gemma, Hugo, Lily, Albert and his wife Mary
Laframenta, their two daughters, Ethel and
Bernice, and Anthony Sirimarco and his wife
Mary Ines Del Grande, and Emily Paolini.
Emily reported that Aunt Mary always
called her "the orfana" in a very
condescending manner. My father always
thought it was Albert's Mary who was
insulting to his sister, and consequently was
rather cold to her through the years. About
1983, when Emily and my father were recalling their childhood, Emily declared, "Oh, no, Albert's Mary
was very good to me–after all I babysat for her. It was Mary Sirimarco, (Beatrice's own sister) who was
so mean." After seventy years, the record was set straight.
The Sirimaro family then built their own home next door at 919 S. Wenonah. Their first daughter
was Angelina Yolanda who was delivered by a midwife and was stillborn. Anthony was naturally very
upset and said any further children of theirs would be born in the hospital. Their son "Bobby" was born
in 1920, and Tony was a doting father. His wife Mary said that when he went to work each day, he would
say to her, "Don't make Bobby cry." Later they had a second daughter and named her Angelina as well.
921 S. Wenonah Avene, Oak Park, Illinois
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The Paolini Moving to Plum Street
A short time after the passing of Angelina Paolini, the family moved to 1423 Plum Street [later
renamed Flournoy], which was not very far from Gilpin Street (see map). It was only a block long,
bounded by Laflin Street on the west and by Loomis Street on the east. My father noticed the many fruit
trees in the neighborhood–probably plum trees–and was told that the area was once an orchard.
Most of the neighborhood residents were of Italian origin, but there were also Irish. At one time,
the area was mostly occupied by persons of French descent, and there were a few French families still
residing in the neighborhood. The parish church was named Notre Dame, and for years the homily was
given in French [the mass at that time was given in Latin]. My father said that he preferred to attend the
French church after his terrible experiences at Our Lady of Pompeii. So what were these terrible
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experiences?
Our Lady of Pompeii versus Notre Dame
I assume that attendance at Our Lady of Pompeii was my father’s first school experience, and that
he was in kindergarten or first grade; he had not learned the masculine art of bladder control. He had to
use the lavatory during class one day, and he asked the teacher–a nun–to be excused. Apparently
suspecting some mischievous intent, the nun refused permission. Fortunately, my father did not have an
‘accident.’ On the next occasion, after again being refused, he did have an ‘accident.’ When Beatrice
gathered the laundry that night, she noticed his soiled underclothing and asked him what had happened.
My father told the truth which apparently dismayed and displeased Beatrice. She went to the school and
confronted the nun who did apologize.
I think it safe to say that my father was not overly studious nor particularly concerned with the
mysteries of religion and the doctrine of the Catholic Church. He was certainly not one to spend time
memorizing prayers and the answers to questions of the Catholic catechism. Yet he was expected to
attend a catechism class that followed the nine o’clock mass, specifically designated for attendance by
children, every Sunday morning. The nuns were insistent, and children were expected to obey. And the
nuns were watchful! My father conceived a scheme for avoiding catechism class, and it worked for a
while. When all adults and children were leaving after mass, he would walk closely with a couple–a man
and woman--so that the nuns would think they were his parents. But after several Sundays, one of the
nuns noticed that his parents were a different couple than previously. His escapades were ended, but it
also ended his regular attendance. He was prohibited from attending mass and catechism classes, so later
he wasn’t able to make his First Communion.
Two of the more significant landmarks of Little Italy were the Catholic churches of Our Lady of Pompeii and Holy Guardian
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Angel founded by Mother Cabrini. Holy Guardian Angel was the first Italian congregation in Chicago. The parish was established in 1898,
and the church was built on Arthington Street in 1899. Due to the burgeoning population, a second major Italian church, Our Lady of
Pompeii, was founded in 1911. The Holy Guardian Angel Church was razed for the construction of the expressway system. The Our
Lady of Pompeii Church is now a the Shrine of Our Lady of Pompeii.
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At school the following Monday morning, it was the procedure for the nun to ask those who had
missed Sunday mass to raise their hand. Being honest and trusting, my father raised his hand as did
another boy. The nun told them to go to the cloak room and wait for her. When she arrived in the cloak
room, she instructed them to kneel down and extend their hands upward. My father thought that the nun
was going to say a little prayer for them or perform a rite that would absolve them of their sin, which may
have been true from her point of view. A loud “thwack” and then searing pain was sensed by my father as
the nun had struck them with a large ruler. My father said that the pain was extreme, but that he was
more shocked than physically hurt. He couldn’t believe that this nun, who he thought was supposed to be
a saintly person, would do such a cruel thing. My father said that he kept this incident to himself and told
no one until many years later.
Being so unhappy at Our Lady of Pompeii, he begged his mother to cease attending this Catholic
school and attend a public school. Beatrice agreed even though it meant losing a full grade. He therefore
attended John McLaren, an elementary school only a block away from his new home on Plum Street. An
additional attraction was that most of the kids on his street attended John McLaren.
The difference in approach to discipline between Our Lady of Pompeii and Notre Dame de
Chicago is exemplified by an incident reported by my father. In the basement of the Notre Dame was a
grotto with a cascade of holy water.
This water was a blessing (no pun intended) because, after playing in hot weather, this cold
and refreshing water satisfied our thirst. I remember one of the rituals before drinking was to
kneel down in front of the waterfall and say a prayer. Naturally, the prayer was very short.
The boys noticed people praying at the base of a saint’s statue and then placing a lighted candle in front of
the statue.
We failed to notice that these people were also placing coins in a box by the candles. Later, a
young priest noticed that we were placing candles at the base of the statue without placing
money in the coin box. He gathered us and explained the purpose of the ritual. He was
understanding and kind, and because of his kindness, we respected him and behaved properly
as we grew older. What a difference from Our Lady of Pompeii Church! Because of this
incident, my friends and I decided to attend mass at the French church instead.
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Life on Plum Street for Ottie
My father was given the Italian name of Attilio, but he didn’t like the name and so he used an
American, or perhaps more accurately, a German version: Otto. One day while playing, he hurt himself.
His brother Arthur accompanied him to Columbus Extension Hospital where he was treated by Mother
Cabrini. He gave her the name of his brother, ‘Arthur.’ When asked by Arthur why he used his name, my
father replied that he didn’t like his. However, to his family and friends, he was Ottie.
Because Plum street was not a through street, that is, it was only a block long, and because there
were few cars in those days, it was safe to play in the street. Among the activities and games my father
mentioned were roller skating, tops, riding bicycles, and a game called “peg and stick.” He described it as
follows:
A peg is made from a piece of broomstick, about six to eight inches long. The peg is tapered at
each end like a pencil when sharpened at each end. The other part is the stick or bat. The bat
could be about 24 to 30 inches long, and also made from a broomstick. A goal is marked, usually
on a spot on the sidewalk or in any clear area. By using the stick/bat when striking the peg at one
of its ends, the peg would bounce up into the air. The batter would then swing and try to hit the
peg while the peg was in the air. His opponents would place themselves in the open area and try
to retrieve it. The retriever would throw the peg toward the goal where the batter had placed the
stick upright. If the peg was thrown and landed within the length of the stick, or if it struck the
stick, the retriever would win the point and become the next batter. But if the retriever failed to hit
the stick or come within one length of the stick, then the batter would count the number of lengths
of stick from the goal and where the peg had landed. Whoever reached 200 points first would be
the winner.
My father made many friends, and was able to appreciate their individual talents. As often the
case, there was an initiation ritual:
After we moved to Plum Street, I met Chuchu, who was about my age. Each day, when he
first caught sight of me, he would immediately wrestle me and pin me to the ground. He never
caused any injury but it made me feel so helpless. At first I thought he disliked me, but this
didn’t seem to be the case. After he wrestled me to the ground, he would play with me, and we
enjoyed each others company. I tried to avoid this morning ritual, so when I came out to play, I
would open my door slightly and look carefully up and down the street to see if I could spot
him. This was a useless effort because sooner or later the inevitable happened. Chuchu really
took a great delight in this ritual.
The exception happened on my first day at J ohn McLaren School. My mother had dressed
me in a new white outfit. The other boys wore knickers and black stockings, but my mother
insisted on me wearing shorts. It made me feel like a sissy. I rebelled, but to no avail. My
mother accompanied me on the first day at school, and she instructed me to behave and to keep
clean. When the teacher met us, she complimented my mother on having such a nice boy, and
she also commented on my white outfit.
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Taylor Street
Mother Cabrini Hospital (circa 1930)
Notre Dame de Chicago
(built 1887)
Columbus statue in Arrigo Park (2010)
(statue made for Columbia Exposition 1893)
Otto Paolini in front of 1423 Plum
Street (circa 1973)
Our Lady of Pompeii
(Erected in 1923-1924)
Flickr user hedgehog3457
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At the first recess, there was Chuchu waiting anxiously to confront me. I warned him not to start
anything, remembering my mother’s admonition to behave and keep clean, but before I knew it, he
had pushed me down in a dirty puddle of water. This infuriated me so much that I jumped up and
with a great charge, I nailed him, and down he went with me on top of him. Almost immediately I
felt someone yank my collar, and when I turned, there was the teacher who was supervising the
playground. She gave me a severe lecture. When my classroom teacher saw the mess, she became
very upset and instructed me to tell my mother that she was not in charge of the schoolyard at
recess.
My father was always quite conscious of his appearance. He dressed for the occasion. This personal
trait may have stemmed from the fact that all members of the family were tailors at one time, and therefore
all were able to make their clothes and were conscious of fashion. This trait was in evidence in my father’s
childhood and continued to adulthood. My mother told me of an incident described by my father. He was
late to school one morning, and gave the excuse that he had to iron a shirt that morning before coming to
school. When he gave this excuse to the teacher, she was very sympathetic–“You ironed your own shirt?”
Very touching! When Beatrice heard him tell this story one day, she hit the ceiling. “There was never a day
when you didn’t have a clean shirt to wear to school. You mean you didn’t have the shirt you wanted to
wear.” My mother commented:
“I’m sure she was right. She not only kept the clothes washed and ironed, she made many of
them. I can particularly identify with this situation as there have been instances in the past where
there might be at least six clean shirts in the closet, but Dad wanted the one that was not ironed, or
maybe even not washed, in which case he would wash it, work at getting it dried as soon as
possible, and iron it.”
As time passed, my father developed a group of friends on Plum Street, and it is obvious from his
description that he appreciated each in their own way:
Our bunch was small at first: Rocky, Chuchu, Tripoli, and J ohnny Bear. Each one of us had a
certain ability and talent. Rocky, for instance, was a brilliant boy; he skipped a couple of grades in
grammar school, and we all respected his knowledge of the subjects of history, mathematics, etc.
Chuchu was the strong boy of the bunch. He was very athletic and very active, but he was a not a
bully. Tripoli was the great swimmer. When he was only about twelve years old, he swam from
the south end of Oak Street Beach to Belmont Harbor, quite a feat for a boy of that age. We all
admired him as this was about the time that J ohnny Weissmuller was making his name at Oak
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Street Beach where he was a lifeguard. J ohnny Bear was the best athlete of all of us–a good
baseball player. He became a professional ballplayer; though he never made it to the big leagues,
but he came close. We always followed his career and admired him. J ohnny Bear never forgot his
old gang, and occasionally he would come over and talk about the good old days. He was very
modest and never showed any conceit. As for myself, I seemed to enjoy all sports and adapted so
that I wasn’t left behind, but I was never exceptional at any one sport.
Johnny Weissmuller (1904 - 1984) was an Austro-Hungarian-born American swimmer and actor.
182
He was one of the world's best swimmers in the 1920s, winning five Olympic gold medals and one bronze
medal. He won fifty-two US National Championships and set sixty-seven world records. After his swimming
career, he became the sixth actor to portray Tarzan in films, a role he played in twelve motion pictures.
Dozens of other actors have also played Tarzan, but Weissmuller is by far the best known. His character's
distinctive, ululating Tarzan yell is still often used in films.
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I was able to organize the group, and was looked upon as a leader as they respected me and
followed my suggestions. In those days, we entertained ourselves, and we never seemed to be
bored. We played a lot of games, and we seemed to enjoy each others company and friendship.
There are many games we played, and at very little expense and equipment. We played tops and
marbles, and we flew kites. We made our own kites as there were none to be purchased. We
played a little baseball although we were still too young to play any organized baseball.
Much of the play took place in the street as automobiles were not prevalent as today; most of the
baseball was played in Vernon Park, latter named Arrigo Park in 1974, but commonly called Peanut Park by
my father and his friends then as it is today. For a brief history, see appendix D: Arrigo Park.
Technologically Challenged
The telephone was a wonder in my early years. I remember when the telephone was installed in
our home. I observed members of my family using the phone, and one day, when I was alone, I
decided to try to phone my friend Rocky. I proceeded to lift the receiver and immediately heard
the operator ask, “Number please.” I answered, “1423.” I didn’t know there was such a thing as a
telephone number, and I thought she wanted the house number of his street address. The operator
said again, “Number please,” but I was so confused that I hung up the receiver. What I didn’t
realize is that I couldn’t have talked to Rocky anyway: he didn’t have a phone!
Shopping with Mom
Apparently Italian immigrants continued their native custom of negotiating the price of a product
rather accepting that which was shown or initially stated. My father recalled that as a boy his mother would
take him shopping, and remembered one instance in which Beatrice was shopping for a new pair of shoes
for him. After finding a suitable pair, she inquired of the price. The quote not being acceptable, she grabbed
my father's hand and started for the door. The salesman argued that the price was reasonable for the shoes
of such high quality. As each point in his argument was being made, Beatrice would pause, then at it's
conclusion, she pulled my father to the door. Halfway out the door, the salesman finally relented: "Okay,
okay, lady. You win! How much?" Finally an acceptable price was quoted, and the sale consummated.
Justice or the Lack Thereof
I have mentioned previously that Plum Street was lined with beautiful trees. Unfortunately after
a few years, most of these trees became diseased, and the city removed them and planted new
young saplings. Each home owner had the responsibility of caring for the tree in front of his/her
property. In fact, Rocky's father, Mr. Pacenti, not only watered his tree faithfully, but built a guard
around the tree trunk and carefully watched and tended the tree. It just so happened that across
from Mr. Pacenti's home, there was a house owned by an absentee landlord, and therefore no one
cared for the newly planted tree in front of this house. We kids would play on this property and
would reach up and grab hold of the top branches and bend the trunk. We would then place our
caps on the upper branches and then let go the branches which would catapult our caps into the air.
Y ou would think that treatment of this sort would damage the tree, but on the contrary, and much
to the consternation of the neighbors, this tree became the fastest growing and largest of the trees,
while Mr. Pacenti's tree which received love and care looked sickly and grew very little.
Ironically, situations of this sort happen to many of us in our lifetime. Y ou follow a certain,
proper procedure very carefully while another person is careless and ignores all the rules and ends
up with better results than you do.
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Life’s Mirror
One of the sports that I enjoyed a great deal and became quite skillful was the spinning of tops.
I learned to spin tops without the top landing on the ground. After winding the string around the
top, I would throw the top downward and just before the top reached the ground, I would pull the
string sharply upward so that the top would land on the palm of my hand. Once the top was
spinning in my palm, I could perform several tricks. I was so proud of my accomplishments that I
decided to show my mother.
I was in the living room when I called my mother to come and see my trick. She immediately
warned me not to spin the top inside the house. I disobeyed her instruction and proceeded to spin
the top. I was very confident of my skill as I had always been successful in performing this trick.
However, this time, instead of the string making the top spin, the string slipped from the top, and
top shot straight forward and struck a large mirror which shattered. I can still see the expression
on my mother’s face. I dove underneath the couch because I feared that she would strike me. She
never did hit me, but she lectured me severely–a lesson I learned the hard way.
How to Make a Golf Ball
Another thing I can remember is the golf ball incident. One day, while playing in the street,
some of the older boys were playing with a golf ball. Golf was not really popular at that time, and
scarcely known to us in the inner city. It was the first time I had seen a golf ball, and I was
amazed by this little white ball that could bounce so high. The boys were having a lot of fun with
it. I asked one of the boys where I could get one, and he said, "Well, you can buy one." I said,
"Where could I buy it?" None of the boys knew where to purchase one, but one of them said,
"Why don't you make your own?" I said, "make my own? How do you do that?" Well, it just
happened that down the street they were repairing a roof and the workers were using black tar. He
suggested that I go over there and get a ball of black tar -- the same size as the golf ball, and then
take it home, put it in a glass and fill the glass with milk, and after a few days you would have a
nice white golf ball.
I ran over to the workers and asked for some tar. At first they told me to go away, but when I
told them I wanted to make a golf ball, they seemed amused and told me I could have some tar. I
shaped it into a ball and dashed home, put the ball of tar into a glass which I filled with milk as I
had been instructed, and put the glass on the bathroom window sill. My brother Art noticed this
glass of milk on the window sill and asked, "What the heck is this?" My other brothers knew,
because I had told them of this project. They all laughed when I told them that this ball of tar
would turn into a golf ball. My mother didn't want them to hurt my feelings, and she told them to
stop laughing. They stopped making fun of me as they realized that sooner or later I would find
out that this was an idiotic thing to do.
Of course, every morning the first thing I did was to rush into the bathroom to see if my ball of
tar had been transformed into a golf ball. After a week or so, I became very discouraged and my
brothers seemed to sense it. This I didn't know until later on. My brothers talked it over and
decided to do something about it. They went and purchased a golf ball, and in place of my tar ball,
they put this nice new golf ball. Well, that morning when I woke up and discovered this real golf
ball, I was elated and started yelling and shouting, "Look, look, -- it did turn into a golf ball." My
mother was quite amazed as she knew it was impossible, but the boys explained what they had
done. She thought it was a wonderful gesture on their part. They knew that later on, I would
realize it was a big joke.
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A Close Call
One of the often stated platitudes of football is that it is a game of inches, by which it is meant that
the difference between success and failure is quite close. It has been my experience that the same is true of
death: it is only a few inches away, though we hardly notice it.
Adolph found some small bullets, and the boys tried to explode them by striking them with a
hammer. One of the bullets finally did explode, and struck Arthur in the leg. In my father’s telling of this
story in his reminisces, he does not specifically identify who struck the bullet that hit Arthur, but Arthur’s
daughter, Carol Jean Paolini, says that she was told it was my father. I believe that deed was too painful and
embarrassing for him to admit.
Arthur did not heed Shakespeare’s advice that discretion was the better part of valor: he often took
chances. Once he was playing leapfrog over the hitching posts, and, being of small stature, failed to clear. He
fell on his arm and dislocated it. Later, he bought a motorcycle for which he had to run along side to start
and then leap forward in order to mount; in so doing, he again once broke an arm.
In both cases of the dislocated arm and bullet wound, Arthur was taken to Columbus Extension
Hospital at which Mother Cabrini was the head official. Beatrice was again confronted by Mother Cabrini
who strongly suggested that the boys be sent to the orphanage; but again Beatrice refused.
Saintly
As Beatrice was pressured to place all the children in an orphanage, she had to be quite strong to
resist In any article about Mother Cabrini, she is always described as a saint who answered God’s call to aid
the poor in the most loving and kindly manner. From my mother’s conversations with Beatrice, one gains a
different impression, that she practiced the type of charity that assumed that she knew best.
When my father had his tonsils removed, and it came time for him to be discharged from the
hospital, Beatrice had to get an authorization slip signed by
Mother Cabrini. Talking to another nun, Beatrice waited
patiently though she could understand that they were just
having an idle conversation in Italian. Finally, Beatrice
interjected, “Mother, my son is very tired. Could you sign
this paper?” Mother Cabrini just waved her aside, and in a
very annoyed tone said, "Don't interrupt!"
The Church and Italian Immigrants
The local church had been the a mainstay of the
villages and towns in Italy, and so the Italian immigrants in
America supported the construction of a church for their
‘village’ in the city. The notion of campanilismo–that the
boundary of one’s home or neighborhood is that which is
within earshot of the church's bell– included the festivals
and church ceremonies and were instituted in America as well.
The Daily Catholic ranked Frances Xavier
Cabrini the 45 of the top 100 Catholics of
th
the century, and is considered the
"Patroness of Immigrants" as Pope Pius XII
declared on November 13, 1950 when he
established her feast day for the Church in
the United States. Pius XII had canonized
Saint Frances Xavier four years earlier on
June 7, 1946. Daily Catholic, October 8-10,
1999 vol. 10, no. 192.
I’m not sure that Beatrice would have
ranked her that high.
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Holy Guardian Angel (Sant'Angelo Custode) was the first Italian congregation in Chicago, established
in 1898, and the church was built on Forquer (later Arthington) Street in 1899. When the population
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grew to such an extent that an additional church was needed, Our Lady of Pompeii was built on Macallister
(later Lexington) Street in 1911. Both these churches were assisted in their foundation by the Scalabrini
Fathers. As indicated above, Notre Dame de Chicago was also in the area, and though built by French-
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speaking immigrants in 1887, it also served the Italian community. See map for locations. These were
‘national’ churches meaning they were established to serve a national/ethnic population; as such, the
sermons and confessions were spoken in the national/ethnic language.
On the other hand, while Italians had a strong allegiance to their parish, they were suspicious and
often held anti-clerical attitudes toward the Catholic Church and the papacy due to the latter’s support of the
feudalistic and oppressive regimes over centuries in Italy, plus opposition to the unification and creation of
the Italian state. This adverse attitude changed over time, and by the 1930s, allegiance to the Church was
quite was strong.
Beatrice did not quickly forgive and forget the Church’s initial denial of the mass and burial in sacred
ground of her husband Alfredo. She said that she ceased attending church until the baptism of her
granddaughter, Carla Zickgraff, in 1937–twenty-seven years later. Still, she had maintained her religious
views and belief in the need for religious instruction of her children as they were sent to Catholic schools.
The Catholic Church was one of five ethnic institutions that served the Italian community initially,
that is, for those who had immigrated:
• the padrone: persons who assisted Italian nationals in immigrating, securing housing, find a job,
etc. while charging a fee or taking a percentage of earnings;
• Italian ‘banks,’ which may or may not have been incorporated and legally constituted but lent
money;
• mutual aid societies and fraternal organizations: while sometimes offering a variety of services,
it was primarily constituted to provide for a decent burial or temporary financial support
due to illness or injury;
• Italian-language newspapers, e.g., L’Italia, La Tribuna Italiana Transatlantica, La Parola dei
Socialisti, La Fiaccola;
• the Catholic Church
As native-born and next-generation Italian-Americans left the Italian enclave and became more
familiar with American institutions–American newspapers, banks, insurance companies, and trade
unions–they forsook their ethnic counterparts save that of the Catholic Church. The parish was part of a
larger institution that had operated in their native land, in the Italian enclave, and, starting in the 1920's, it
was now operating in non-Italian neighborhoods of Chicago and its suburbs. It operated in much the same
manner, that is, the liturgy of the mass was in Latin and the rituals and vestments were similar or identical
to those in their Italian neighborhood. The Catholic Church had shown enough flexibility to meet their needs
Churches listed in the 1900 Chicago Directory (also called "The Lakeside City Directory"),
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http://genealogytrails.com/ill/cook/churches.html
An order founded by John Baptist Scalabrini (1839-1905), bishop of Piacenza, Italy.
184
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for which there was no strictly ‘American’ equivalent with which it competed as did the other Italian
institutions that withered and died.
School Attendance–or the Lack Thereof
Being sent to school did not necessarily mean attendance. The four boys–Armando, Adolph, Arthur
and Aldo– were often truant from school, and so at some indeterminate point in time, but probably around
1914, they were sent to St. Mary Training School for Boys, a Catholic orphanage in Des Plaines, Illinois, a
185
suburb of Chicago. Arthur mentioned years later that they really learned a great deal while at the school, but
they missed their home and often ran away in order to return home. They may also have been motivated
186
to work because it gave them a sense of accomplishment and a sense of honor in contributing to the family
and helping their mother.
Although Beatrice preferred to have them continue their education, she finally acceded to their
wishes, and my father believed that they were all hired at his mother’s place of employment. In the 1920
census, Beatrice, Adolph, Arthur, Aldo, and Emily list their occupation as tailor; Otto was still in school at age
eleven, and Armando was overseas.
Beatrice made most of her children’s clothes though she didn’t always have to make new outfits as
the boys grew older. As one grew too large for one shirt or pants, the next in line took possession. As she
made these clothes, she taught her children the family craft of tailoring.
Social Life
The Italian communities of Chicago formed numerous voluntary associations: mutual benefit
associations, parish clubs, school organizations, marching bands, settlement house clubs, and even a
Protestant vacation Bible schools was established on the Near West Side to complement the social network
of the extended family of the Italian community.
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Still in existence, it is now called Maryville Academy. The experience of the Paolini brothers is
185
again representative of the socio-political policies and movement of the times. By 1890, there were twelve
orphanages in Chicago, but reformers such as Jane Addams were already attacking them as places that
warehoused children in unhealthy, overcrowded buildings. Some reformers believed that children should
remain in their home if available while still others contended that orphanages were needed but should be in a
rural setting as they presumed such a setting had been instrumental in the development of the American
character and culture. Thus several orphanages of the inner city moved to spacious suburban campuses
including The Catholic Boys Asylum in the Bridgeport neighborhood moved to Des Plaines and became St.
Mary's Training School for Boys. See appendix F: St. Mary Training School for Boys.
No record of attendance was found in response to a request for Armando, Adolph, Arthur and Aldo
186
on November 24, 2010.
Candeloro, Dominic, "Chicago's Italians: A Survey of the Ethnic Factor, 1850-1990, chapter 8 in
187
Ethnic Chicago: A Multicultural Portrait by Melvin G. Holli and Peter d'Alroy Jones, editors, Wm. B. Eerdmans
Publishing Co. Grand Rapids, Michigan, 1995, p. 239.
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No doubt there was an extensive informal social network woven throughout the Italian sections of
Chicago. Often these relationships were based upon places of origin in Italy, so that Abruzzese, Campanians,
Pugliese, etc. often congregated in the same neighborhood. Relationships were also formed through
fraternal, mutual aid, and political organizations such as the Association of Pugliesi in America, Società di
Unione e Fratellanza, and the Order Sons of Italy.
188
From the persons identified, the friends of the Del Grande and Paolini families seemed to have been
persons and families operating small businesses. Throughout the years of troubles and hard work, Beatrice
managed to have good times and enjoy life. In all the pictures of her, she is very well dressed and all the
family wore nice clothes and had excellent food.
When my father was a small child, his mother would often take him to parties with friends in the
neighborhood. One family, named De Leone, he described as quite distinguished, the father being addressed
as Don Carlo and his wife as Donna Rafaela, which are titles of respect reserved for the educated class.
My father recalled a little incident that embarrassed him and his mother:
These gatherings of our friends at the De Leone home were quite frequent, and of course we
were invited to be there at a certain time. My mother usually had so many chores at home that she
would occasionally be late. In one case she sent me on ahead, and when I arrived, they inquired
where my mother was. I replied that she would arrive shortly, and that she had to put on her
sottana and dress. They all laughed, and when my mother arrived, they greeted her with, “Oh
Donna Beatrice, we see that you have put on your sottana and dress as Ottie told us.” They
laughed again. But my mother gave me a rather stern look, so I knew that I had said something
improper. The sottana, which is an Italian word, is a slip or petticoat–an undergarment, and then I
understood that I shouldn’t have mentioned such a thing.
My father remembered the fine dinners at the De Leone home. Mrs. De Leone was a gourmet cook,
and she enjoyed having dinner guests. Even if she was short of money and really couldn’t afford to give a big
dinner party, she would pawn some belonging to raise enough money for a party.
On the passage to America, Beatrice met the Vivianno family, headed by two brothers who started
making pasta in their basement and were so successful, they grew into the largest manufacturers of pasta in
Chicago, calling their company the Chicago Macaroni Company.
“Italians,” Encyclopedia of Chicago.
188
http://www.encyclopedia.chicagohistory.org/pages/658.html
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A downside to the success for the Viviano family was that the they were extorted by La Mano Nera
189
(The Black Hand), a criminal organization whose roots can be traced back to the Kingdom of Naples as early
as the 1750s. Typical Black Hand tactics involved sending a letter to a victim threatening bodily harm,
kidnaping, arson, or murder. The letter demanded a specified amount of money to be delivered to a specific
place. It was decorated with threatening symbols like a smoking gun or hangman's noose and signed with a
hand imprinted in black ink; hence the name. Beatrice said that a woman from the Black Hand lived with
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the Vivianno family as a potential threat to their children and to generally keep an eye on them.
Other close friends of the Del Grande’s were the Agnini brothers. They were engaged in the
manufacture of costume jewelry, and they were also musicians and singers. Actri Agnini sang small roles in
opera, and Oresto played the piano. Usually the big gatherings were held at the home of Rafaella De Leone.
She would serve an Italian gourmet dinner, and after the dinner, the guests would sing–mostly Neapolitan
songs and also opera. My father remembers:
“... one day Oresto came dashing over to our house to play a new song on our piano
which had just arrived from Italy. It was called Rimpianto, and he got us to enjoy it
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long before it became popular all over the country for many years. Now I hardly ever hear
it.”
When parties were given by these people, there
was good music and plenty of wonderful food, and with
discussions of literature and opera. The only arguments
might be about an opera performance.
Beatrice always managed to attend the opera, no
matter how difficult life became. Until 1929,
performances of the Chicago Civic Opera and the Chicago
Symphony Orchestra were held at the Auditorium
Theater, 50 East Congress Parkway.
Auditorium Theater
The biography of Salvatore Viviano states that “In 1910 he removed to Chicago, Illinois, where with
189
four of his brothers, he opened another macaroni factory.”
http://genforum.genealogy.com/pa/allegheny/messages/3352.html
Nash, Jay Robert, World encyclopedia of Organized Crime, Da Capo Press, 1993.
190
The Black Hand was not a centrally organized criminal operation with blood-oaths and roots in Italy
as was the Sicilian Mafia. It was a generic name of innumerable small groups of criminals. This operation of
extortion and murder ceased due to the maturing of the Italian populace who sought remedy from the police
and Federal government, the latter intervening through the power of the U.S. Postal Service as the notes to
would-be victims were sent through the mail. Perhaps the most significant factor in its demise was
Prohibition effected on January 16, 1920: the criminal saw a new and more lucrative source of revenue.
Rimpianto Serenata (Regret Serenade) was written by Enrico Toselli in 1900 when he was only 17
191
years of age. http://www.delcamp.us/viewtopic.php?f=12&t=46939&start=0.
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Visiting Relatives
Recollecting his visits to his relatives, my father wrote:
We spent most holidays, Fourth of J uly, Thanksgiving and Christmas, at my grandfather's
house. My grandmother, with the help of my aunts, would prepare a huge and delicious dinner.
My grandfather sat at the head of the table and after we had finished the main course, my
grandfather would tell tales, mostly of his experiences in Italy.
There was a doctor who practiced his profession in a small fishing village in Italy.
One day his son, who was also a doctor, came to visit him. The son suggested that the
father take a vacation and that he would take care of his patients while he was away. The
old doctor took his son's suggestion. After the son had treated several patients, a
fisherman with a bandaged hand came in, bringing a large kettle of fish that he gave to
the doctor. When the young doctor removed the bandage, he noticed the hand was
slightly swollen and that there was a fish scale embedded underneath the skin. The
doctor asked him if his father had been treating him, and fisherman said, "Yes, he had
been treating him for a long time." This puzzled the young doctor for he could not
believe his father had not noticed the fish scale that was causing the infection. He
proceeded to remove the scale and in a few days the hand healed. When the father
returned from his vacation and asked his son if everything went well. The son said, "Yes,
except the fisherman's hand. Hadn’t he noticed the scale underneath his skin?” The
father said, "Yes, he had noticed it," and then asked his son if he had removed it. The son
said “Of course.” The old doctor sighed, "Well, now we'll have to buy our own fish!”
When he told some amusing story, everyone would laugh. I joined in the laughter although I
really didn't understand the stories, especially the punch lines. I laughed just to be part of this
joyful family group.
There were always bowls of nuts dates, figs and fruit on the table. I noticed on several
occasions that my grandfather would peel a peach and slice it into small pieces and put them in a
large glass. He would then fill the glass with wine and let the peach absorb some of the wine. He
would then eat it and give one or two pieces to some of us children. I sort of enjoyed that.
One day, at home, while my brothers were outside playing, and I was alone, I saw some
peaches in a bowl on the table, and I thought it would be a good idea to fix these peaches as my
grandfather did. I stood on a chair to reach the bottle of wine which was on a high shelf. I poured
the wine over the sliced peaches and ate and drank the whole thing. You can imagine the results.
I became very groggy and fell asleep on the kitchen floor. When by brothers came in and saw me
lying on the floor, they were alarmed, thinking I was ill. I remember Aldo lifting me up and
turning me over. I looked up at him with a dazed expression and grinned. He turned around to my
other brothers and said, "Why -- the little punk is drunk!" They tried to get me up, and I staggered
and wavered. They thought my antics were hilarious. I wanted to get away from them, so I
grabbed the kitchen door to go outside. The door seemed to wobble from side to side, and I again
fell down. My brothers enjoyed this great comedy. They never told my mother of this incident. I
don't know whether they were protecting me, or if they thought they would be scolded for not
looking after me. Many years later, at a family gathering, when we were telling humorous stories,
they did relate this to my mother. My mother was flabbergasted to hear this, but since no harm
came of this, we all had a good laugh, including my mother.
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When I imagine the life of Beatrice in these years after the death of Alfredo, I think mainly of the
difficult, arduous, and probably lonely task of supporting her family: working long hours at a tedious job in
harsh conditions under autocratic and niggardly management. I think of the time and effort she had to
expend in order to feed and clothe her children. I think of the anxiety that she must have felt not knowing
where her boys were and what they were doing when she was at work. Yet she seems to have been very
successful as a parent. The boys seemed to have been well-behaved, caring of each other and caring of their
family. They may have evaded school, but they did not shirk the jobs that supported their family.
I know that my father in later life realized the support and sacrifice of his mother and his brothers,
but at the time, I believe that he was quite oblivious. To him, this was the best time of his life as he so often
said.
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Chapter 14
The Great War
Armando’s Odyssey
With the assassination of Archduke Ferdinand of Austria on June 28, 1914, the ‘war to end all wars'
commenced. Italy entered the Great War for a variety of reasons. The most prominent rationale put forth by
its government was that of irredentism in which the claim was made that the Tyrolean region should be part
of Italy as there was a high percentage of Italians in this Austrian held territory. To a certain degree, this was
a sham. The Italians were still fearful of the Austrians who had crushed their attempts of achieving
independence, republicanism, and unification in the 19 century. The Austrians had maintained a standing
th
army and launched their invasions from the Tyrol. Denying the Austrians this region would mean the
relocation of their army beyond the Alps, a natural defensive barrier.
"To the victors belong the spoils," as the saying goes, and Italy wanted a seat at the victor's table
when it came time to award the spoils, particularly the lands of the Ottoman Empire. Italy delayed entering
the war because it bargained with both sides, the Triple Entente and the Triple Alliance, for the best pre-war
deal, that is, guarantees of territories and military assistance; it also tried to discern the winner based upon
the first year of fighting. Italy chose the Triple Entente of Great Britain, France and Russia, even though
Austria was willing to yield to most of the demands for territory in the northeast. But for some, the war was
seen as a means by which Italy could achieve greatness:
"...After long years of national humiliation, God has been pleased to grant us proof of our
privileged blood....Blessed are they that have, for they have more to give and can burn with a
hotter flame....Blessed are those young men who hunger and thirst for glory, for they shall be
filled."
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Gabriele d'Annunzio poet and revolutionary born in the Abruzzo,
Italy declared war on the Austrian-Hungarian Empire on May 23, 1915. With the drain of manpower
due to the flood of emigration in the preceding years, the Italian nation appealed to its departed sons:
“When the First World War broke out, the King of Italy advertised in the journals for native
sons to return and fight for their homeland. In return, and if they survived, they would be
given a thousand-dollar bonus and free passage back to America.”
193
There were many organizations in America that were formed locally and/or by the instigation of the
Italian government to aid and assist Italian immigrants in acclimating and succeeding in America. One of
these organizations served to recruit soldiers for the Italian Army, and it succeeded in enlisting one
Armando Camillo Giovanni Paolini. Beatrice objected, but he departed anyway. With the help of friends,
Beatrice contacted the Italian Consulate and the International Red Cross in an effort to have him return
home; however, because he was 18 years of age, he could not be released from his enlistment.

Smith, Denis Mack, Modern Italy: A Political History, The University of Michigan Press, Ann Arbor,
192
1959, p. 264.
Paolicelli, Paul, Under the Southern Sun: Stories of the Real Italy and the Americans It Created,
193
Thomas Dunne Books, St. Martin’s Press, New York, 2003, p. 85.
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Armando had been born in Italy, and emigrated at the age of nine. His parents were not naturalized,
and thus they and he were still Italian citizens. Had they been naturalized, he would have derived
citizenship. However, he would still have been obligated to serve:
“Although Italians lost their Italian citizenship when they acquired foreign citizenship, this did not
eliminate the obligations of military service incumbent on all Italian-born males.”
194
During the period of the war, Italy had a conscript army–young
men had no choice but to report for military duty when called. The
Italian government identified its potential recruits for the Italian
military from the atti di nascite, the registry of births in each
province. A military record was found for the Del Grande’s oldest
son, Carlo Alberto, who was born in Italy in 1893 and emigrated in
1898; it can be deduced that he became a potential recruit,
probably upon birth, but certainly by age five. Not having found
any military records of Armando, it is not known whether or not
the Italian government contacted him and recruited him, or
whether he answered the clarion call of his native land.
Surely his mother feared for his life and worried about him
throughout the war. But his moment of peril was short lived. In his first engagement, Armando was
captured by the Austrians at the famous Battle of Caporetto , which was a disastrous defeat for the
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Italians. For Armando, it must have seemed like a waste of time: he spent the remaining two years of the
war in a prisoner-of-war camp.
At the end of the war, the Italian prisoners were released, but afforded no transportation that would
enable them to return to Italy. Armando and his comrades were forced to return to Italy as best they could.
Armando Paolini
Briggs, John W., An Italian Passage: Immigrants to Three American Cities, 1890-1930, Yale
194
University Press, New Haven, 1978, p. 134.
There are no recollections of Armando in his capture in battle nor his imprisonment, but I did find
195
a very interesting personal recollection of one such Italian. His story is provided in my monograph History of
Italy and is entitled: Virgilio’s Caporetto Odyssey.
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At this point, events and reasons are rather vague and somewhat conjectural. There is no doubt that
Armando wished to return home to America immediately, but he was unable to obtain his return as there
were complications over his identification papers. When a prisoner of the Austrians, his identification
papers had been taken from him, and so he was unable to prove his identity to the satisfaction of officials,
but it is not known which officials. Presumably the Italian army could determine his identity, so it is likely
that it was the American government that raised objection as to his identity and therefore had not allowed
him to return to the United States immediately. It is possible that legislation enacted in 1917 made
immigration more restrictive and documentation more stringent.
In trying to re-establish his identity, he declared that his father’s name was Alfredo, which was the
only name he had heard his father called. “Ildebrando” was his father’s given name. It was recorded on his
birth record, the record of recognition by his mother Angiola, and it was on the manifest of the ship (SS
Moltke) on which the family had immigrated. I have not found any record originating in Italy with the name
Alfredo. More than likely, it was a nickname that he adopted. Therefore, attempts to equate Alfredo with
Ildebrando using the available existing public records in Italy and America failed, thus leaving Armando
stranded.
To prove his identity, it may have been necessary for Beatrice to provide an affidavit that stated that
Ildebrando and Alfredo were one and the same person, that he was the father of Armando, and that both had
immigrated in 1906. In any case, this bureaucratic entanglement took more than two years to straighten
out–lengthy even by Italian standards.
His location and movements during this time are again vague. It is known that there was a
remaining sister of Don Francesco named Maria Grazia Del Grande that would have been Armando’s great
aunt; and in fact it is known that he lived with a woman who was called `Zia,’ either because the name was
short for Grazia or because zia is the word for aunt. On the manifest record of the Braga, the ship on which
he embarked for his second immigration to America, in the column entitled, ‘Name and Complete Address of
Nearest Friend or Relative in Country whence Alien Came,’ it states: “uncle di Giulio Camillo POPOLI.” A
marriage record was found for Camillo di Giulio and Maria Grazia Del Grande.
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Camillo and Zia were childless, and she wanted Armando to stay with them, and she hinted that he
197
would inherit their property. Not surprisingly though, Armando was homesick for his family, and he
wanted to return to America. One wonders if he ever regretted this decision.
It is difficult to understand how a young man supposedly in the Italian Army, or possibly recently
discharged, with no visible means of support, and living in the Abruzzo, would be able to take a trip to Paris.
But the fact that he received a letter from a girl in Paris after his return to the United States gives evidence
that he did so. Again, one can only imagine the nature of this relationship and what his life might have been
had he pursued this woman.
Marriage record of Maria Grazia Del Grande and Camillo Di Giulio, 19 Dec 1888, in Popoli, Abruzzo,
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Italy, Registri dello stato civile, 1809-1910, 1888, Number 67, FHL INTL Film [ 2016265 ]
Maria Grazia was 61 years old when Armando emigrated in December 1920. If she didn’t have
197
children then, she certainly would not have had children after 1920.
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Obviously he returned from France, and traveled to the Port of Napoli in order to board a ship for
America. As he related to his family, the day before he was scheduled to depart, he went down to the harbor
to see the ship on which he had booked passage. Apparently it did not inspire confidence. Another man was
looking at the ship as well, and Armando remarked, “Tomorrow I’m going to the United States on that ship.”
The man replied doubtfully, “I don’t think you’ll make it.” But he did make it--returning on 5 January 1921
on the ship called the Braga.
Other members of the Del Grande and Paolini families served in the
military during the Great War, but none had a tale to tell as interesting as
Armando’s.
American Service
Hugo Del Grande joined the American navy, being stationed at the
Great Lakes Naval Training Center, and Adolph Paolini joined the American
army, being stationed at Fort Snelling near St. Paul, Minnesota. Neither went
overseas though Adolph's regiment was being readied to be sent to Europe
and to sail from Boston, Massachusetts when the war ended.
My father vividly describes his brother Adolph's return:
While I was playing on the street, I saw my brother in his army uniform, walking in great
strides. I rushed to greet him, and when we met, he tapped me on the head and said, "how‘re you
doing, Ottie?" I was sure proud of him, and later when some of the boys met me, I told them about
my brother. They asked me, "What was he in the army?" I told them, "probably a sergeant."
Well, I didn't know a sergeant from a colonel. But he did make corporal.
I kept saying, "Wait until you see my brother" to everyone. We were all anxious to see him,
but -- oh my God, when he came downstairs dressed in civilian clothes, we were all stunned and
disappointed, and I of course was the most disappointed of all.
Few Italians immigrants joined the Italian army, but many did register and serve in the armed forces
of their adopted country:
“...in the American Army, perhaps 300,000 men of Italian stock, or very conservatively, 245,000,
more than any other immigrant nationality, were enrolled.”
198
“The Italians are about 4 per cent. of the whole population, but the list of casualties shows a
full 10 per cent. of Italian names.”
199
“There was no shipyard, ammunition-factory, airplane-factory, steel-mill, mine, lumber-camp, or
docks in which Italians did not play a large part, and often the most prominent part, in actual and
efficient work.”
200
Scoville Park, Oak Park
with name of Hugo Del
Grande
Rose, Philip Marshman, Italians in America, George H. Doran Co., New York, 1922, p. 97.
198
Creel, George, How We Advertised America, the first telling of the amazing story of the Committee on
199
public information that carried the gospel of Americanism to every corner of the globe, Harper and Brothers,
New York, 1920, p. 177.
Ibid.
200
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This contribution and sacrifice increased ethnic pride among the Italian community and increased
prestige and honor in the eyes of all Americans. It also had a significant economic affect that benefitted the
immigrant community. The war caused an extreme decline in immigration and thus a decrease in the labor
supply; at the same time, it caused an increase in demand for manpower for the production of war matériel.
Therefore wages rose dramatically, thus providing those who remained a greater income.
Arthur’s Contribution
Sometime during this period of 1912-1915, Arthur
began working as a tailor. While it was probably a factory
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and not a sweatshop per se, he said that it a terrible place to
work. It was cold in the winter and hot in the summer,
especially for those who position was in the middle of the
room. As one gained seniority, he/she could move closer to
the window which afforded some cooler and fresher air. He
claimed that conditions in factories did not improve until the
unions were formed and pressured the owners to improve
the workers situation. For this reason, Arthur was a member
of the Amalgamated Clothing Workers of America and always
proclaimed that he was a ‘union man.’
Aldo Takes Otto Under His Wing
With Armando and Adolph in military service, and Emily with their grandparents, only Aldo and
Otto were left at home. Aldo was five years older than Otto, and no doubt was charged with his supervision.
Correspondently, my father grew exceptionally close to his brother Aldo and was someone he greatly
admired. In his memoirs, he wrote:
Aldo was my next oldest brother, and he and I had a great relationship. He took the most
responsibility for my safety and development. I was lucky to have a brother of this quality. When
Aldo was quite young, about fourteen years of age, he showed talent in art by drawing
continuously–drawing on any material he could get. One of his most astonishing drawings was
that of a battlefield of World War I that he drew on the asphalt pavement of the street. The picture
covered about 100 to 125 feet, and was a located a block from our school. Some of the school
classes were permitted a recess to see this work of art. Aldo never finished school–for a reason I
never knew. Even though he went to work, he continued to draw.
And now comes a turning point of his life. My mother was able to attend English classes
along with other immigrants during her lunch period at work. The teachers of these classes were
volunteers, mostly from the northern suburbs of Chicago. My mother was very anxious to learn
English, and she became close with one of the teachers. Naturally she often mentioned her family,
and her son Aldo who had great talent for drawing. This teacher was from a wealthy family, and
she was very interested in art. She asked to see some of Aldo's work, and after she did, she
immediately wanted to ask him if he would like to go to art school. Naturally he accepted, and so
she enrolled him in the Art Institute of Chicago. This made the entire family happy and proud.
Garment Factory Workers
His daughter, Carol Jean Paolini, stated that her father told her he started work at age twelve.
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Since Aldo and I were very close and spent a lot of time together, he would pass some of the
secrets of art to me, and he tried to teach me the meaning of art. He tried to encourage me to draw,
but even though he praised some of my work and would tell our mother that I had talent, I wasn't
ambitious enough to pursue it.
When I look back on those early years, I realize that it was a wonderful period of my life, and
that my close and loving relationship with my brother Aldo was wonderful.
Hull House
The teaching of English by a volunteer and her intervention to have Aldo enrolled in the Art Institute
of Chicago suggests involvement with the Hull House, a settlement house founded by Jane Addams and Linda
Gates Starr.
The original house for which the settlement was named
was an Italianate mansion built by real estate magnate Charles J.
Hull at 800 South Halsted in 1856. By the time Jane Addams was
searching for a building to house her new enterprise, the house
had become dilapidated. The settlement house was opened in
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1889 for which its founders had had very modest goals. They
imagined a place to offer art and literary education to their less
fortunate neighbors. The leaders and volunteers of the
organization were prominent and wealthy women who resided in
the Gold Coast community and the northern suburbs of the city.
203
Obviously they saw the need for education in the areas that
they themselves had been educated so as to be refined and
cultivated women. It soon became obvious to them that more practical education and training were what
the immigrants needed and wanted: English language, cooking, sewing and technical skills that could qualify
them for a job. To their credit, they recognized the needs and responded.
The influence and accomplishments of Hull House at the local, state, and Federal level were many:
establishment of the city’s first playground and bathhouse, investigation of housing, working, and sanitation
issues, the establishment of the first juvenile court, lobbying for protective legislation for women and
children, child labor laws, occupational safety and health provisions, compulsory education, and protection
of immigrants to name a few. These leaders also became reformers in their own interest: women’s
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suffrage.
The Paolini family were part of this socio-political environment and movement that have built
institutions that are now the everyday fabric of our society.
Hull House Mansion Dinning Room
The present-day building is but the residents dinning hall (dating to 1905) and rebuilt missing
202
portions of the mansion which was moved 200 yards from its original location in order to accommodate
buildings for the University of Illinois Chicago campus. “Essential Architecture: Jane Addams’ Hull
House” http://www.american-architecture.info/USA/CHICAGO/CHIC-LS/CHIC-LS-041.htm
One of the seventy-seven communities designated by the Social Science Research Committee at the
203
University of Chicago as described previously.
Encyclopedia of Chicago, http://www.encyclopedia.chicagohistory.org/pages/615.html.
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Paolini Family
circa 1915
Otto (Attie), Aldo, Beatrice, and Arthur Paolini
(about 1915)
Emily and Beatrice Paolini
Emily Paolini
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Paolini Family
circa 1915
Arthur Paolini Sr.
Maria Beatrice Del Grande [Paolini]
Armando Paolini
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Chapter 15
The Family Reunited
Coming Home
On August 14, 1917, Don Francesco and Gemma said farewell to their youngest daughter Lily as
she boarded a train for Milwaukee, Wisconsin. She had decided to take vows to become a nun and was
enrolling in St. Joseph Convent. A year later on June 25, 1918, she pledged the Franciscan order and took
the name of Wilma.
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Having lost her roommate and close friend, Emily Paolini asked to return to her family. As
Armando and Adolph were still away in service, there was a room for her, and, being ten years old, she
would attend school for much of the day and not need constant supervision. Expecting Adolph and
Armando to return shortly, Beatrice relocated the family to larger quarters at 1739 Polk Street–slightly
west of the ‘Little Italy’/Taylor Street area and a block away from the West Side Grounds, then home of
206
the Chicago National League Ball Club (Cubs). The building was owned by the Dinella family, headed by
Vincenzo Dinella who had seven daughters, all of marriageable age.
Adolph return home in 1919, and Armando returned in 1921. The Paolini family was reunited for
the first time since the death of Alfredo in 1910. My father states: "We were happy to be together again
and enjoyed many wonderful times." He describes family life:
It was a custom that the entire family sat together at the dinner table, and we would have
some interesting conversations and some heated arguments, mostly about baseball--the Chicago
Cubs versus the White Sox. Art and Adolph were Cub fans and Aldo and I were White Sox
fans. Armand was not an enthusiastic baseball fan at that time, so he didn't participate in the
baseball discussions, but loved to discuss politics and opera.
There is no saint recognized by the Catholic Church as Wilma. A reply to the inquiry regarding her
205
name stated that it was assigned by the bishop. E-mail from Mary Ann Eichenseer, School Sisters of St.
Frances, May 29, 2007.
The history of Italian settlements in urban centers is not the subject nor within the scope of this
206
family history. Also, it is a subject that continues to evolve with various generalizations and explanations. It
does seem to me that the Taylor Street neighborhood may have been disheveled and dirty, as the inhabitants
became more prosperous and as reformers clamored for more and better services, both to the people and the
infrastructure, the neighborhood became quite livable. In the course of this time, its schools, churches,
recreation facilities and settlement houses influenced and acculturated these foreign-born peoples to
American living patterns and values.
The consequence was its undoing. Many of the foreign-born immigrants and their second-generation
offspring moved out of the area, often for the suburbs which depopulated the neighborhood and led to the
demand of expressways to bring them back to the city-center for their white-collar jobs. As substandard
structures were demolished, the vacant land became available for institutional development for the Chicago
Medical Center and the University of Illinois. Clearance of even the standard housing was required for the
paving of the Dan Ryan and Congress expressways. Little remains of the Italian enclave save a few street of
houses and some Italian restaurants.
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*****
Characterization of Italian Immigrants
The literature on immigrants in general, and Italian immigrants in particular, present a very
contrasting picture to the Del Grande and Paolini families. Consider the following quotes provided by Briggs:
The parents of these [immigrant] children work with the hands rather than the head;
therefore, the children whose experience is much more limited than that of average children
must have the latent power within them developed almost entirely in the schoolroom. They
have very little idea of law or obedience, some of them are half fed and most of them are very
dirty. About one-half do not speak English.
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A teacher in Utica, New York, 1906
Most of the Italian people are not interested in higher education, but wish their children to
go to work as soon as the law will permit. We aim, therefore, to include in the work of the first
six grades such knowledge and information as will be of most use in the kind of life they are
planning to lead. It is also true that we are equally anxious that they secure an appreciation of
music, drawing and poetry.
The home life of our children is bare, and from an American stand-point, unattractive. The
children receive little or no ethical instruction, there is no real social family inter-course and
very little proper instruction in common household duties.
208
A principal in Utica, New York, 1916
As I have described the Paolini family, the contrast with the observations and generalizations of Italian
immigrants is quite stark. Beatrice wanted her children to continue their schooling, but they needed to work
in order to support the family–clear evidence of family cohesion. While none of them save perhaps Aldo were
devoted to school work, all advanced in their occupations and all were knowledgeable of current events as
they avidly read the newspaper. All spoke English as well as Italian. All pitched-in with family chores, my
father maintaining the fuoco (fire in the stove) as a prime example. The incident of my father ironing his shirts
before school indicates both his cleanliness and neatness [for which I carry the family gene] and his self-
reliance. Aldo certainly had an appreciation for drawing, and all had a love and knowledge of music. Their
209
dinner conversation is evidence of family inter-course.
I am not certain as to whether the Del Grande and Paolini families were different from other Italian
families because they were of a different social class, or that Italians were mis-characterized and/or over-
generalized based upon a few families, or that American schools were so successful that they instilled these
positive attitudes, behaviors, and knowledge. I have my own preferred explanation, but I leave it to the
reader to select his/her own.
*****
Briggs, An Italian Passage, p. 208.
207
Briggs, An Italian Passage, p. 213.
208
In relating these stories, my mother related, somewhat plaintively, that Italians were
209
notorious for being dirty, but she got one that was fastidiously clean.
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Challenges
Aldo was just a child himself but he had the responsibility of preventing me from getting
into trouble or being hurt. He was also responsible for keeping our two coal stoves burning,
but sometimes he became so involved in his play that he would let the stoves go out. During
winter days, it became dark in early evening, and order to get the stove started before our
mother came home from work, he thought of scheme to get me to work as well. He challenged
me to a race as to which of us could get a stove burning first. Hard coal was used in the stove
in the living room, while soft coal was used in the kitchen stove; the latter being much easier
to start. He would first pick the kitchen stove, and of course, I would object and wanted the
kitchen stove which was fine with him because then I was helping him do his chore.
Another way he got me do things was to challenge my speed. He would bet me I couldn't
complete doing some chore before he counted, for example, to 100, or whatever he thought
would be fair. Of course I raced as fast as I could and naturally he waited until I was just about
done and then he would start the final count.
Swimming in Lake Michigan
During the summer when we were about 10 or 11 years old, we would go to Oak Street
Beach on Lake Michigan, located just north of downtown. What fun we had because of the
spaciousness, and we were able to run along the shallow water and play games like wrestling
and leapfrogging, etc.
One day we decided on an adventure. Where the sandy part of the beach ends, the land juts
out towards the deep water from which there is a strip of concrete about 20 feet wide and a
block long. We decided to swim from this strip to a breakwater about 300 to 400 feet away.
The breakwater ran parallel to the shore and was about the length of a football field. Most of
us jumped in and started toward the breakwater. What we didn't know was that there was a
strong current running parallel to the shore.
Only one of the boys, Carmen Vitullo, didn't start swimming with us. He followed us a
little later, and after a few yards from shore, he yelled back to the people on shore to tell him
when he was halfway so he could decide whether or not he could swim the full distance. Later
we realized that the distance of halfway and return to shore is equal to the full length.
We swam straight to the breakwater, but because of the current we drift sideway and had to
keep adjusting our direction in order to reach the breakwater. We all made it. We laughed
afterwards, but we all knew that it was a foolish exhibition that could have resulted in tragedy.
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Beach Dress Code
The popular style of bathing suits for men at that time was blue trunks with a wide white
canvas belt, together with a white sleeveless top. One day while at the beach, I became
uncomfortably hot, and I decided to remove the top of my swimming suit. Only a short time
elapsed when the lifeguard came over and ordered me to put my top on again as men were not
allowed to be shirtless. Now, at my retired age, when I visit the beach and see these young girls
so scantily clad and think back that an eleven-year old boy was told he must wear a top, I can only
laugh at the contrast.
Field of Dreams
This area on Polk Street was not a very prosperous section of the city. It was not a slum,
but more or less a blue collar neighborhood. A block away from our home was the old Chicago
Cubs ball park–the original one–across the street from the Cook County Hospital. This
ballpark had been built in the late 19th century. The Cubs moved from this park in 1916 to the
present Wrigley Field at Addison and Waveland which was built for a team in the Federal
League which failed.
In front of the old stadium was a large parking area with posts about four feet high
anchored in the ground and about ten feet apart from one another. There were several row of
these posts. These posts had been used years earlier to hitch the horses and buggies, prior to
the use of automobiles. Part of the parking area was cleared of the hitching posts, and therefore
we were able to play baseball. Most of the time we played softball or "piggy move-up" since
we usually had only seven or eight players–not enough to make two teams. Piggy move-up
was played with only a few batters and mostly fielders. When one of the batters made an out,
he would take the place of a fielder who would then move up and become a batter. We played
until we got tired. Then we went across the street to the county morgue to get a drink of cold
water at the drinking fountain. The water was always cold because Chicago's water supply is
from Lake Michigan which is always cold and doesn't need any refrigeration.
As I was a new boy on the block, I was the victim of a scheme by the others boys. The
other boys would wait while I was drinking, then they would all rush out and slam the door
behind them. I tried to rush out as fast as I could, realizing that the next room was where they
kept the cadavers. Naturally I was frightened. With all the speed and strength I could muster, I
pulled at the door to try to escape which I finally managed to do. This was the initiation of the
"new boy on the block." Whenever a new boy moved into the neighborhood, I was anxious to
see him go through this same ordeal.
Another pastime of ours was to go over to the psychopathic hospital and lay on the grass in
the shade. We always looked up at the windows to see some of the patients. We never spoke
to them except one day on the first floor near the entrance, we noticed a very pretty girl, but all
we could see was her head. We started talking to her and found her to be very charming and
pleasant. We said to her, "Y ou're such a nice girl. Y ou don't look like the rest of them." We
talked to her several times, always asking why she was in there. She just smiled but never
answered our questions. Then one day she came out of the side entrance and walked toward us.
To our amazement, she had on a nurse's uniform. We realized how stupid we had been. She
was gracious and just smiled at us and said a few words. From then on, whenever she passed
us, we would have a little, pleasant conversation with her.
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When I was about twelve years of age, I joined the Duncan WMCA on Ashland
Boulevard. Here I learned to become a better swimmer and diver, and also I learned to
play billiards, table tennis and basketball. My greatest love was baseball. It was at that
time that I started to gain some recognition of my skills as a ballplayer. I would also
occasionally visit the J ane Addams Hull House where I started to learn to
dance–something at which I never became very accomplished.
At Hull House I became acquainted with a boy for whom I had great admiration. He had
been in an accident and had lost a foot. He had an artificial limb, and we boys called him
"Leggy." This was probably a cruel thing to call him, but we didn't realize that, and we didn't
mean to hurt him. He accepted it in good humor, and it didn't seem to offend him at all. Even
with his handicap, he played basketball and baseball. He became fairly good as a baseball
pitcher, and we accepted him as just another player. He didn't ask for any favors, and we didn't
grant him any.
While I lived on Polk Street, I became more active in baseball, and when I was about
twelve years of age I wanted to play on an organized team. Therefore I went back to my old
neighborhood on Plum Street to see if there was an organized team. A few of us decided to
organize our own team. There was a youth center on Ashland Boulevard called Chase House.
This youth center occupied a large residence as were most of the houses on Ashland Boulevard
between Van Buren and Polk Street as they were owned by well-to-do people at one time. As
the city grew, these people moved from this area, and some of these large homes were now
fraternity houses for the medical students of the university.
The Chase House was run by Episcopalian nuns who I respected very much. The were
dressed in habits like those of the Catholic orders, except that they wore gray. We boys had a
meeting with the head nun and a priest, and they were more than happy to sponsor our baseball
team by furnishing us with a supply of bats, balls, and uniforms with the "Chase House"
emblem on the back. This was a real godsend to us. They were responsible for our good
behavior, probably preventing us from getting into trouble. We respected them, and I guess
they tried to do their best to make us happy. They even furnished a meeting room for our
occasional business meetings when we made our rules and regulations; also we would invite
some of our opponents when there was a tournament or contest that we wanted to organize. As
I reflect on Chase House, I believe that if more centers were organized as well as this place
without a lot of regimentation and preaching, young people would probably respond as we did.
Because we appreciated and respected them so much, we always tried to behave and please
them. This was one way we could show them our gratitude, and we were happy to do so.
After several years of playing for the Chase House Tigers, we boys decided to raise some
money to purchase more equipment and bats and balls, as there never seemed to be enough.
We didn't want to impose upon this wonderful organization who had been so kind and generous
in furnishing uniforms and equipment. After some discussion, we came to the conclusion that
we would sponsor a dance to raise the money we needed. Well, right down the street on Plum
Street, there lived a young man who played the drums with a small band. They played at
weddings and other neighborhood events. We asked him if his small orchestra would play at
our dance. He agreed. The next thing we had to do was make arrangements for a dancehall.
At that time, some of the city parks had recreation halls. The one we selected was out west --
Columbus Park. We went there and explained what we wished to do. The official said, "If you
do not charge admission, there will be no charge to you for the use of the hall."
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Of course we were going to charge admission, so the fee for the use of the hall was $25. We
decided to charge twenty-five cents admission per person. Each member of our team was given
an allotment of tickets to sell and the dance was to take place in about a month. Because of my
age, I had very little experience in selling tickets. I was able to sell only two tickets to a girl
and her friend who I had known in my early days in grammar school. I also sold tickets to my
sister and her boy friend.
The orchestra arrived early prior to the eight o'clock starting time for the dance on a
Saturday night. All the ball players also showed up before eight o'clock and waited anxiously
for the people to start coming. A short time afterwards the two girls I sold tickets to arrived
and a few minutes later my sister and her boyfriend came. None of the ballplayers brought any
girl friends. Since there were only four people there, the orchestra was reluctant to play but we
persuaded them to start. After quite some time, no other guests appeared. As I was president
of the club, I inquired of each member to account for how many tickets they had sold. The
confessed that they hadn't sold any. This experience was really a great fiasco, but it did teach
me a lesson in how to attend to the details of organizing a project.
Of course, we had no money to pay the orchestra. The orchestra leader would come to our
meetings and demand payment. We promised him that we would pay in the future, knowing
full well that we had no way of raising the money. He wanted to know when we would pay
and we said that maybe at the end of the baseball season we would have enough money to pay
this debt. However, since we were never paid for playing ball, and we never bet on our games,
there was no way we could pay him. At the beginning of our association with Chase House,
we had discussed the matter of betting on games with the nun in charge and with a priest and
they said they would not like to use the Chase House name in connection with such a thing as
betting on games. I mention this because betting on games was the custom at that time.
After several attempts to collect his money, the orchestra leader gave up, but for years,
whenever I saw him, he and I would enjoy a laugh about the dance. Later on, we became a
well-established ball team, and we were booked to play against church organizations such as
the Knights of Columbus and Veteran's Hospital. We were paid a small amount. A prize was
also given to the winning team, and fortunately we often won this prize. By that time, we lost
contact with the orchestra leader and so we couldn't pay him.
John McLaren Elementary School
At the J ohn McLaren Grammar School, it had been the custom
of the graduating class to give a graduation present to the school.
Previous classes had given many fine pictures of King Arthur and
the Knights of the Round Table, and some of the students
suggested that we give this same type of gift.
However, it was brought to our attention that the school office
windows were without any curtains, so we voted to give curtains
as our graduation gift. We had a contest for the best design which
was to be printed across the bottom of the curtains. The curtains
were to be made of a plain beige fabric called pongee. The student
who won the design contest also would do the work of printing the
design on the curtains. To my surprise, my design, which
consisted of a pear and two leaves, was selected as the winner.
John McLaren School
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A working place was set up in the manual training room, and I cut out my design from a
square piece of linoleum. Each section of the curtain was stretched onto a frame. I would add
paint to the design, reddish yellow on the pear and green on the leaves. I was cautioned to be
very careful and not to hurry. One error meant that the section could not be used. I was happy
that I didn't make a single mistake. Everyone was very proud of our gift and I was so glad that
I was able to give something in return to J ohn McLaren School, which I loved.
William McKinley High School: Two Strikes and You're Out
I graduated from grammar school and entered the William McKinley High School where I
tried out for the baseball team in the spring. Some of the players on the team I already knew
and also had played against some of them in the past on sandlot baseball teams.
I believe that these players told the coach of my previous experience, and the coach thought
that I could fill the vacancy left by the previous star shortstop who had graduated. Everything
went well during practice and during the regular scheduled season. I was often complemented
on my play, and I felt very confident and very happy. We won most of our games that season,
but the very last game of the season proved disastrous for me. In the latter innings of the game,
with the bases full, I struck out and to make things even worse, I made an error in fielding.
McKinley High baseball team did win the West section championship that year but lost the
first round game against another section. In all that time, I was not the regular shortstop
because of my poor performance at the last game of the regular season. In other words, I was
"benched."
Naturally I was very disappointed and depressed because of this experience. I thought I
would never play baseball again with desire and confidence. I knew I had the ability and only
needed guidance from an understanding coach to reach my potential in baseball.
At this time, I could have used some advice and some guidance. I never asked for any
because, foolishly, I thought I knew all the answers. This was a terrible, terrible mistake,
because I developed poor study habits, and I lacked ambition to improve myself.
The Tortoise and the Hare
At McKinley High School, in my first English class, I had a very young teacher who was
exceptionally competent. The first assignment she gave us was to write a fairy tale or a fable.
She said the story itself was not important as long as the grammar and sentence structure were
correct. We could take all the time we wanted to complete the assignment as long as it was
finished by the last week of the semester. I kept putting off this assignment until the very last
day. Then I panicked. I went to the library in desperation and looked for books of fables and
fairy tales which I thought would fulfill the requirement. I copied one of the fables word for
word and turned it in to my teacher. The next day when the teacher came to class, she
commented on the work that had been turned in, and she said that she would like to have some
of the students read their stories aloud. To my surprise, she called my name first. I was
reluctant to read my story. I said I would rather not read it aloud. I would prefer to have some
other student read theirs. She vigorously insisted on having me read my story and said if I
wanted to receive my credit in English, I would have to read it. I got up and sort of fumbled
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and she said, "Wait a moment. I want you to announce the title and read your story, word for
word, as you have it on your paper."
I announced the title, "The Tortoise and the Hare." The entire class exploded with
laughter. The teacher tapped for attention, and I knew that I was going to be ridiculed
throughout the whole thing, so I refused to go on. The teacher again threatened me with a
failing grade if I didn't go on. The further I read the more hysterical the class became. They
were rolling in the aisles by the time I finished. "How stupid could anyone be," they must have
thought. I received a zero on that paper, and also I failed that course.
As foolish as my father appears, I think that it should be recognized that he takes the blame
entirely on himself; he doesn't try to shift the blame to others nor offer excuses though he does come to
realize that he could have used some help.
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Chicago
John McLaren Elementary
School
Hull House
The original building of the Hull House
Settlement was built in 1856, with the dining hall
being built in 1906 (the above complex
surrounds the original building). The dining hall
has been relocated and was declared a Chicago
Landmark in 1976.
Jane Addams Collection, Swarthmore College Peace
Collection
West Side Field (1906)
The phrase "Way out in left field" originated at
the West Side Grounds, due to the location of a
psychiatric hospital behind the ballpark's left
field fence, where players and fans could hear
patients making odd and strange remarks
during games.
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Cook County Hospital (1900)
(1876-1914)
McKinley High School (1901–1996)
2040 West Adams Street Chicago, IL 60612
Cook County Hospital
(1914-2002)
Austin High School (circa 1920)
(1898-1930)
231 North Pine Av
Chicago, IL 60644-2333
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Chapter 16
Five Weddings and Two Funerals
Return to Normalcy
In 1920, Warren G. Harding campaigned for the presidency on the slogan of “Return to Normalcy”
and won. With two exceptions, the slogan seems to have been adopted as a plan of action for the decade
by the Paolini family.
Adolph returned from service to
resume his job as a tailor. Aldo also worked
as a tailor though he did pursue studies at
the Art Institute of Chicago for a while.
Arthur also continued his work as a tailor
though his daughter Carol Jean reports that
he supplemented his income by becoming a
pool hall hustler. Emily and Otto continued
their high school education. It is believed
that Beatrice continued to work for Alfred
Decker & Cohn.
All who immigrated save Aldo became naturalized citizens:
Beatrice 1 October 1935
Armando 7 June 1927
Adolph 17 June 1918
Arthur 20 December 1934
Adolph was probably naturalized under provisions of nationality law for aliens serving in the U.S.
military; specifically it waived the Declaration of Intention requirement and waived or reduced the
residency requirement. Thus a soldier could file a petition and be naturalized in the same day. Adolph
was naturalized during service while residing at Fort Snelling near St. Paul, Minnesota. Armando
submitted his petition for naturalization on February 23, 1921, a month after he returned from Italy, and
was naturalized six years later. Beatrice and Arthur submitted their declaration of intentions about the
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same time (1934), probably in anticipation of the Social Security Act of 1935.
Emily and Otto
For the use of the manifest of the SS Moltke in processing her request for citizenship, see
210
appendix A.
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Arthur Paolini and Josephine Dinella
At the apartment building at 1739 W. Polk Street, the
availability of two young bachelors in their own building was
too tempting for the Dinella sisters, Anna and Josephine, to
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resist–and it’s doubtful that they tried. It was said by many
family members, who shall remain anonymous, that Anna and
Josephine pursued Armando and Arthur, respectively.
According to Beatrice, Arthur had been going with a
young lady who worked in the same shop. The two had a
quarrel, and perhaps she overplayed her hand. Arthur started
dating Josephine and then married her. When the young girl
heard the news of the marriage, she wept and said, "I didn't
think he would do that."
Apparently Arthur needed to have one last fling. Two weeks before the wedding, he and his uncle
Hugo drove to New York City "in order to try out his new car." Somehow he forgot to mention this
excursion to anyone, including his mother, brothers and fiancée. Josephine was ready to kill them both.
Arthur and Josephine were married in front of a judge on December 31, 1923 ; but there was a
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second marriage ceremony. Arthur had insisted that they be married by the civil authority as was
required in Italy. Josephine did not recognize the legitimacy of this marriage ceremony, and she
213
insisted that they be married by a priest in a Catholic church. After the ceremony on New Year's Eve,
Josephine continued to live in her parent’s apartment until the church marriage on January 19, 1924.
Vincenzo Dinella and Angelina
Costrina [Dinella]
Their father, Vincenzo (Vito) Dinella, had immigrated in 1883 from Pescasseroli, a medium size
211
city in the Abruzzo. Initially he worked as a laborer in the construction of canals. Several canal projects were
undertaken in the period 1887 to 1922 such as that which linked the Chicago River to the Des Plaines River.
Vito became a padrone, meaning that he sponsored the passage of other immigrants and found them jobs for
which he was repaid with interest; he helped the new immigrant surmount the language barrier and
explained American labor practices. He also was a foreman in a construction company, and he determined
which men worked and what jobs they were assigned. For this reason, families often gave him presents at
Christmas time in order to gain or retain his favor.
He seems to have honored his ‘marital obligation’ as his wife Angelina Costrina who bore children in 1889 and
1890 in Italy, but he seems to have voluntarily committed to a relationship in America. His dalliance did not
go unnoticed, and word got back to his wife who had remained in Italy. She and their daughters emigrated
soon thereafter so as to re-establish their marriage. There is a noticeable gap in the birth of children from
1890 to 1902; otherwise, they regularly produced children reaching a total of eight.
Petition for Citizenship of Arthur Paolini, No. 122991, dated 20 Feb 1934.
212
Starting in 1809 with Napoleonic law and continuing to the present.
213
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There are two pictures of Josephine and Arthur in New York; one
includes a picture of a man that appears to be his uncle Hugo. Did he
accompany them on their honeymoon?
In his Petition for Citizenship recorded
on February 20, 1934, Arthur recorded his
occupation as tailor. In the 1950s, and 60's, he
worked in a tailor shop, Leonard's Store For
Men, in Elmhurst, Illinois owned by a man
214
named Leonard Shapiro.
His daughter, Carol Jean, said that her
father worked six days a week, usually more
than nine hours a day. He was a perfectionist,
and nothing left the back room until he had
inspected and approved it. Carol said that he made suits for at least one
mobster, probably Sam Giancana. Two men would enter by the rear
entrance; then two more would enter and stand at the entrance leading
to the front of the store; then two more would enter with Giancana. The
mobster would often buy several suits at a time costing thousands of
dollars. Once he dropped a $100 bill on the floor while her father was
fitting him; when Arthur retrieve the bill and attempted to hand it back to
him, Giancana refused to take it, saying that it was dirty because it had
been on the floor.
My father bought many of his suits at Leonard’s as he probably received some discount plus extra
attention to his suits from his brother. He once bought not one, but two
Borsalino hats. They were beautiful hats, but he seem to have forgotten or not
realized that he and my mother were planning to move to Florida where such
hats were not needed nor an appropriate style. Still, my father could never
bear to part with those hats.
Josephine had tuberculosis in the early part of her married life, and she
had to undergo a treatment in which her lungs had to be collapsed and surgery
performed, which was successful. She was in a sanitarium for a time but exactly how long is not known.
When she was in the sanitarium, her roommate was the sister of Baby Face Nelson, a notorious Chicago
mobster. Josephine said that they loved it when he came to visit because he brought both of them all
kinds of presents, such as candy, flowers, nightgowns, robes, etc. Apparently Josephine's lungs were
severely damaged by the disease, and she was very susceptible to pneumonia, which she had a couple of
times. Carol and her brother Art were checked periodically for tuberculosis.
Josephine bore her first child, a daughter named Mary Therese, on October 1, 1931, the Feast Day
of St. Therese, and hence the name. Sadly there was a complication in the pregnancy (placenta previa in
which the placenta grows in the lowest part of the womb (uterus) and covers all or part of the cervix).
Mary Therese lived only one day, dying on October 2nd, the day designated by the Catholic Church as a
celebration of the Feast of The Guardian Angels. "My mother talked about her all the time as though she
lived awhile," reports Carol.
Now called Leonard's Fine Mens Clothing, it is still in business as of this writing (2010).
214
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Happily Josephine successfully bore two healthy children: Arthur jr. born in 1936, and Carol Jean
born in 1941. Apparently there was frequent contact with the Dinella's because when Art jr. started to
talk, he could speak Italian as well as English.
Uncle Art (or 'big Art' as I used to say, in order to distinguish him from his son, 'Little Art or Art,
Jr.) was the most personable and the most amiable of my uncles. He usually had a cigar rolling around in
his mouth, and a twinkle in his eye.; and of course he was well dressed.
Armando Paolini and Anna Dinella
In 1924, Armando married Anna (Anne) Dinella. The photographs of the wedding couple and the
groomsmen and maids of honor indicate quite an elaborate affair. The two couples, Armando and Anna,
Arthur and Josephine, bought a two-flat at 5324 Crystal Street, which is located in the community
215
called Austin on the city's far west side, a neighborhood to which many upwardly mobile Irish and
216 217
Italians from the inner city were relocating.
It seems that Anna and Josephine had the idea of buying the two-flat, probably influenced by their
parents who invested in real estate. It was rumored that they practically made the deal before telling
their husbands, but Carol Jean remembers that it was the brothers, Armando and Arthur, that insisted
that they buy and live in the building. In 1947 or 1948, they bought a eight-flat building at 5467 W.
Hirsch Street in Austin.
At the time these two families moved, Austin was still a strongly Republican ward. Uncle Art said
that when he went to register for the first time for a primary election, there was a long line that moved
very slowly. Finally an election official came out and asked, "Does anyone want to register and vote in the
Democratic primary?" My uncle was the only one who raised his hand, and so allowed to proceed to the
front of the registration table for Democrats.
In addition to the two couples, a third sister, Edith, and her husband Glen, lived in the basement
apartment. Carol Jean described her childhood as living in one household where the children (her
brother Arthur Jr., cousin Joan Marie, and herself) could enter any of their relative's apartments as though
it was their own. When one didn't care for the dinner being served by their mother, they could dine at
one of their relatives.
My mother recalls that Mrs. Dinella reportedly had a heart condition and just sat in a chair. When
Josephine and Anna had guests, she wouldn't (or couldn't) even come up to the second floor. When the
two-couples moved to the two-flat in Austin, and Mrs. Dinella would come to a party, but she didn't sit at
the dining table because there was a dish of mayonnaise on the table, and she said it made her sick to look
at it.
Census, 1930 - Chicago,Tract 214, precinct 39; Ward 37, Block No. 247.
215
Austin was created in 1865, when developer Henry Austin purchased 470 acres for a temperance
216
settlement named “Austinville.” It goal was to provide home ownership, public amenities such as tree-lined
parkways, and gracious living. In 1899, Austin was voted out of the township and into Chicago by residents
of other parts of the township.
Roughly bounded by W. Ohio St., N. Waller, Parkside, W. West End & N. Mayfield Aves. & W.
217
Corcoran Pl. in Chicago. http://www.hellochicago.com/HistoricPlaces.Cfm
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In his petition for naturalization in 1927, Armando lists his occupation as “insurance,” but in the
1930 census his occupation is “tailor.” By 1940, he had become a chief water engineer for the city of
Chicago, and worked at the water pumping station on Michigan Avenue, across the street from the
famous water tower which is one of Chicago's landmarks. Chicago affords such opportunities.
There was a time when the Republican Party was competitive in election campaigns for local
offices. In one campaign, Armando worked as a Republican precinct worker, and successfully carried the
precinct for his candidate. The Democratic ward committeeman was startled, and sent a flunky to
Armando telling him that he wanted to see him. Armando became an Assistant Precinct Captain for the
Democratic Party. There's little doubt that he had to work hard and deliver a majority vote for the
alderman even before he achieved being Assistant Precinct Captain. There was a lot of competition for
such a job, and it was essential to do the political work in order to become a city employee, even a very
low-ranking one.
His first job in the Water Department was cleaning out the big furnaces. Periodically, the furnaces
would be shut down for cleaning and he would have to get inside and scrape the interior which had
become encrusted. Probably not a fun job! He did study and did good work at his job a well as being a
precinct worker. He had a great personality and established a good rapport with voters in his precinct.
My impression of Armando was that he was quite handsome, but had a rather severe demeanor:
he hardly smiled and rarely laughed in a jocular fashion. He was hardly taller than his brothers, yet he
carried himself with a military bearing; his movements were slow and dignified in the manner described
by Dante as one who is due honors. And I often observed deference toward him by his relatives. While
his brothers Arthur and Ottie would raise their voices in order to be heard, Armando had a voice that had
strength though he would maintain a low volume that would invoke his audience to pay attention.
Armando and Anna had two children: a son Aldo for in 1925 and a daughter Joan Marie born in
1935.
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Aldo Paolini (I)
In 1925, my father’s brother Aldo became ill. He suffered a great deal,
my father describing him writhing in agony on the living room couch. He
underwent surgery for appendicitis, but the cause of his illness, which was
cancer, was not diagnosed. He continued to suffer, and the doctors operated a
second time. He died on the same day of the surgery of “surgical shock
following operation for removal of sarcoma of the colon...” He died on
September 10, 1925 at the age of 22. My father wrote in his memoirs: “Even to
this day, I constantly remember those wonderful years with him, and I miss him
dearly.”
Beatrice Moves to Austin
With less room needed and Beatrice making more money, she determined that she could afford a
nicer apartment. The family, now consisting of Beatrice, Adolph, Emily, and Otto, moved to 5232 W.
Altgeld Street, probably about 1922. This apartment was also in the Austin area. With her greater
income, Beatrice purchased a piano and had Emily take piano lessons. And she bought an automobile!
My father was quite happy with the move as well because it afforded him a new start to make the
high school baseball team; unfortunately, he took some old baggage with him. He writes:
I was very happy to find that I could enroll at Austin High School, a lovely school,
considered to be one of the best in Chicago at that time. The grounds were nicely landscaped
with many trees and bushes. The school building itself looked like a fortress or castle. I was
very proud to be a student of this school.
Some of the baseball players at Austin High School recognized me and knew that I had
played baseball at McKinley High. They asked if I were going to go out for the team at Austin.
I never committed myself because I knew my poor academic grades would make me ineligible
for the team. The baseball coach saw me play basketball on the intramural team and asked me
if I wanted to go out for the school team. For the same reason, I didn't try out for this team.
Now, the penalty I paid for not doing my school work was that I was never eligible to
play on any school teams. I was always failing in one subject or another. In other words, I
would pass in English and math, but fail in history because of not doing any homework. Then I
would study to bring my grades up in the failed subject and in doing so, would neglect the
other subjects.
One of the times, when I took my report card home to my mother, she examined it, and
by this time she understood a little English. However, she didn't quite understand what the
various grades meant. I told her that "G" meant good, and when she asked what "F" meant, I
said it meant "fine." My sister shouted to her:" ‘F' means failure!"
Aldo Paolini
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Iota Alpha Chi
One of my greatest experiences at Austin High was when I was initiated into Iota
Alpha Chi, a new fraternity with only eight members. There were many old fraternities at
Austin, some originating at the beginning of this century.
The brothers of Iota Alpha Chi were of good moral character. None of us smoked and
only drank moderately at some special occasions. This was during the prohibition era.
Because we were well-mannered, we gained a good deal of respect, especially from the girls
who were glad to date most of the fraternity brothers.
Fraternity Brothers
Red Speer
Romeo Navigator
Gene Hyer
Charlie Hamn
J ack Trumbull
Don Westergreen
J ack Freeman
J ud Higgins
Don McDaniel
Girl Friends
Phyllis Freeman
Bea O'Rourke
Adele Shefte
Rosalyn Harris
Harriet Hakes


Our meetings were held every two weeks at one of the member's homes. Naturally, we
took turns in having these meetings. After our business was completed at these meetings, the
parents of this member would serve refreshments and usually it was quite a feast. All the
parents were delighted to serve us. This was a marvelous arrangement. We didn't need any
supervision. Any problems were usually minor and of little importance. The parents were glad
to meet all of us and observe our activities which were honest and proper, something this
present generation could imitate.
Some of the larger and older high school fraternities would give their annual dances at
some of the large hotels in downtown Chicago, with big name bands such as Guy Lombardo,
Ted Weems and Ted Lewis. Out fraternity decided to give a dance to be held at the Edgewater
Beach Hotel. We engaged Husk O'Hare and his band to play. The Edgewater Beach Hotel was
probably the best hotel in Chicago at that time. It was located on the shore of Lake Michigan
and Paul Whiteman's Band performed there for many years. Our dance was very successful
and produced a profit. With this money, we planned to have a dinner for our members and
their dates at some popular roadhouse restaurant with a big band.
A most unusual event arose at the meeting just before we made our final arrangements
for this dinner, when on of the brothers requested that instead of having the dinner, we should
give this money to an urgent cause. He demanded that no one ask why or what the money was
to be used for, that under no conditions could he divulge the name of the individual or the
purpose. I believe each individual, even though it was not discussed among us, must have
realized that this cause involved someone close to our fraternity. We respected his request and
voted unanimously for his request. It later turned out that the money was not needed. We
never discussed this among us. We kept our promise and to this day I don't know any of the
facts, and I don't wish ever to know.
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Our fraternity was constantly involved in many activities. Our Halloween parties were
especially enjoyable. We also had swimming parties every Wednesday night at Blackhawk
Park located on Fullerton and Lavergne Avenues. We knew the lifeguard there who admitted
us to the pool even though Wednesday night was supposed to be only for married couples.
Since no married couples ever seemed to come to the pool, the fraternity brothers and their
dates had the full use of the pool.
Aldo Paolini (II)
A son was born to Anna and Armando in 1925. To honor his younger brother who had passed
away that same month, he was given the same ill-fated name of Aldo. When, and for how long, is not
known, but he contracted rheumatic fever. My mother remembers her visit during Aldo's illness:
They wanted to make sure that it was quiet so Aldo could rest, and there was a sign on
the doorbell, "DO NOT RING." We obeyed the sign and did not ring, but while we were there
someone DID ring the bell, and J oe and Anna both shrieked, "Who is ringing that bell?" at the
top of their voices. Actually, I guess their voices only had a "top." I was quite amazed by the
fact that they would yell like that when they wanted quiet for Aldo.
Aldo Paolini died in 1940 at age 14.
Adolph Paolini and Evelyn Dassel
The only history of Adolph and Evelyn is that reported by my mother:
Adolph was in the drum and bugle corps of the U.S.
Army. He joined the American Legion and was quite active
throughout his life, working for many worthwhile events in the
neighborhood and for young people.
The Legion rented a store for their meetings, and
Evelyn's family had friends who occupied the next store. I did
meet this couple later. I think they were in the upholstery
business and were friends of Adolph and Evelyn for many
years. Adolph worked installing chain-link fences, and as with
so many jobs then, it was not steady income. Evelyn and
Adolph lived in the second-floor flat of a two-flat owned by
Evelyn's Uncle Pete. Evelyn's Aunt Hattie also lived there, and
Evelyn's younger sister, whose name I believe was Anna May.
Then, of course Elaine was a small baby, so they had quite a
houseful and I'm sure quite difficult situations. Many families
had to live together like that during the Depression Era.
Cheryl is quite a few years younger than Elaine--maybe nine years -- I'm not sure.
Anyway, when Cheryl was a very small child, Anna May took care of her quite a bit. Then
Anna May died near the time that Candy was born, so it was a difficult time for this family.
Adolph Paolini
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I don't know just when Adolph started to work for the streetcar company, but it
probably was in the early 1940's. His work was in the barns in the maintenance and repair
division.
Evelyn's Aunt Hattie was a dignified and friendly person, always very nice.
Uncle Pete was a good fellow too, although I don't think I ever heard him speak to a
soul. If we were there, he would just walk in and go about his business and not say a word.
Apparently, as well as his streetcar job, he had a little store with a back room where mostly
streetcar employees would play cards. [This information is all that I heard in bits and pieces.]
Apparently the card-playing led to loaning money at good rates, and Uncle Pete did
very well. He also had a friend (who rented his first-floor flat) who was a professional thief,
and occasionally at Evelyn's flat there would be a load of dresses and coats for sale, and I
bought several dresses and coats there, but I hasten to add that I wasn't very comfortable about
doing so.
As his daughter Elaine reports, her father hardly talked, even to her. My father said that he
hardly talked to him as well. But one time they were riding on their way to work on a CTA bus, and
my father asked about Elaine, then Adolph talked the remainder of the trip.
As if to balance the act, Evelyn provided plenty of conversation; and she was unusually blunt. For
example, she wasn't reticent about using the N-word, but then most people weren't in those days. Still, I
was rather shocked at first and unfavorably impressed. While I didn't and don't condone it, I came to
understand that it was more a part of her vocabulary rather than malevolent prejudice.
But her forthright statements were comical as well–though not intended as such. At an extended
family gathering at our home in Northbrook in the 1950's, the women were socializing in the backyard,
watching the children play. One of my aunts complemented by mother on her dress. "Oh she's had that
for years," commented Evelyn.
In about 1969, there was at a large family gathering, and I was in a small group composed of
Emily, Evelyn, and Linda Flowers Paolini (Arthur, Jr.'s wife). We were exchanging greetings and making
the usual inquiries of spouse and children. "How is Uncle Charlie doing," ask Linda of Emily. "Not well at
all," blurted Aunt Evelyn, causing Aunt Emily to spin around in stricken grief.
She once uttered words that were wiser than she may have realized. My mother reported that at
one family gathering, there was a ‘debate.'. Someone defended their argument by saying they read some
fact in a book. "You can't believe everything you read," retorted Evelyn."
Adolph and Evelyn had three daughters: Elaine, Cheryl, and Candace.
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My Dad's First Jobs
Despite his poor grades, my father did graduate from Austin High School in 1928½. He now
entered the workforce. In almost every case, he obtained his jobs through friends. Jack Trumbull was a
high school classmate at Austin H.S., and while he was working at the First National Bank of Chicago, he
helped my father get a job at the bank as well. My father described his job as a courier--collecting and
delivering documents of financial transactions, sometimes including money. When money was involved,
he was to call the bank, and a bank guard was sent to accompany him. The first time he was told of this
procedure, he responded, "How would anyone know that I was carrying money and attempt to rob me?"
His supervisor responded, "We're not worried about anyone robbing you; we're worried about you
staggering in here claiming that you were robbed when in fact you stashed the money for yourself." My
father was startled and a bit insulted that someone thought he was capable of such dishonest behavior.
Civilian Conservation Corp
It was the heart of the Great Depression: 1933. My father could not find
a job, and so, to lessen the burden on his mother, he joined the Civilian
Conservation Corp. The CCC's mission was two-fold: to reduce unemployment,
especially among young men; and to preserve the nation's natural resources.
Inducted in Chicago, his company was sent by rail to Oregon, and he was
stationed near the town of Tillamook on Mount Hebo. The main task of this
company was to clear forest for the creation of roads that would allow
firefighting men and equipment to reach forest fires.
My father told several stories about his year in the CCCs; I'll share two.
While the supervisors were army and/or National Park Service rangers, the
company was comprised solely of young men, and city slickers at that. When
one of them came upon a large, round blob hanging from a tree limb, he took a
swing at it with his axe. The bees swarmed out of the nest and attacked every
company member it could find. The axe-swinger was stung the most; luckily he
survived.
While the army and National Park service personnel operated the camp and supervised the
company, there were also local men–mountain men–who provided, what today’s bureaucrats would
term, ‘technical assistance.’ In other words, they showed the corp members how to swing an axe and use
a saw. Sitting around the campfire one evening, the city slickers and the mountain men were ‘chewing
the fat' when the conversation drifted to expertise with an axe. One of the mountain men swung his axe
and flung it where it stuck in a tree. "Pretty lucky toss," or something to that effect, said one of the city
slickers. "You think so," said the mountain man, retrieving his axe, and then hurling it a second time with
the same result.
Otto Paolini in CCC camp,
Tillamook, Oregon
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Murray Hills Apartments
After one year, my father returned home and found a job at the Murray Hills Apartments, a luxury
apartment building on Chicago's north Lake Shore Drive. He was a garage attendant, that is, providing
valet service to the guests. His best story for this job was that the guests often asked the elevator
operator to walk their dog. Pleased to accept the tip, the elevator operator was none to crazy about dogs;
and so he would open the back door of the building and literally fling the dog into the alley. Naturally the
dogs grew fearful of the elevator operator, and so when a guest and his/her dog would approach the
elevator, the dog would resist and cower. The would explain and partly apologize: “Fido is so afraid of
the elevator,’ not realizing that it was really the elevator operator of whom the dog was fearful.
Miami
A fraternity brother named Charlie Ham had established a construction and/or real estate
business in Miami, Florida. When Charlie and his mother first went to Florida, my father had driven
down with them. Needing a job and invited to stay, he went to Miami in order to work construction.
One of this jobs was laying tile roofs. Such work is back-breaking to say the least; but my father
had unbelievable stamina all through his life. Laying tile roofs included mixing cement, then hauling the
cement mixture in buckets up to the roof and spreading it; then hauling a batch of tiles up and laying
them. The tiles are half round tubes and about a foot and half long. Imagine doing this work in the
summer Florida sun!
My father recalls that on one of his first jobs, the guy mixing cement was told the ratio of sand to
cement, maybe 1:3. Overlooked was the fact that he used a different shovel for each ingredient–shovels
of a different size. Needless to say, the mixture didn't harden, and the next day when they arrived, all the
tiles had slid off the roof.
My father apparently made good money for Depression days. "Buy some land down here,"
advised Charlie. But my father was homesick, and he returned to Chicago. The land that Charlie advised
him to buy is now incorporated by downtown Miami.
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Isabel ("Harmony") Daniels
My mother was born and raised in Harmony, a small town in
218
southeastern Minnesota. Her father, Herb Daniels, had been a successful
businessman, but in the Great Depression, he had lost the business, and in
1936 he died. Her mother moved to Chicago about a year later in the hopes of
a new relationship. When my mother graduated in 1938, she moved to
Chicago to enroll in the Moser School of Business, but quit soon thereafter in
order to take a position at the Retail Credit Company (now Equifax). She then
writes of her meeting and courtship with my father:
Dad and I met in the fall of 1938. I lived on the south
side of Chicago, 6232 S. University Avenue at the time, and
worked in the office of the Retailers Commercial Agency in the
loop. I was dating a boy named Bill Knaus at the time.
Now it happened that Otto had an insurance call to make
somewhere on the south side and he was early. He and Bill had
been in the CCC together, and since Bill lived on the south side,
Otto decided to stop and visit him. I guess Otto made his business
call and then drove Bill over to my place as Bill and I had a date.
Bill thought Otto was a wonderful person, sort of an older brother
type who was a good friend, and I liked him too–I thought he was
a very interesting person.
I guess Dad liked me pretty much right away
too, because he made arrangements to date a girl he
knew who lived on the south side, Marge Murphy, and
the four of us would go out. I recall Dad and Marge
played tennis one time and Bill and I watched. Then I
think Dad took us to a ballgame or maybe more than
one at Mills Stadium, as he worked there as a cashier on
weekends.
Then it happened that Bill went to Florida in search of a job.
At that time, J ack Trumbull's grandmother had a room for
rent in her house at 420 N. Sawyer, and the rent, with breakfast
included, was even less than the $3.50 I was paying, so it seemed
like it would be a good move for me, and Dad wasn't overlooking
the fact that it would be more convenient for him.
So we started dating and dad took me around to meet his
many friends and later on, his relatives. Emily invited me for
dinner, and that's the story Dad likes to tell about how I ate the
spaghetti, and even had seconds (actually I had a second helping as
Isabel Flavia Daniels
Humboldt Park Boathouse and
Lagoon
Apparently my father gave my mother the nickname of “Harmony” after her hometown. All the
218
relatives on my father’s side called her Harmony. I didn’t realize her given name was Isabel until I was in my
twenties.
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they encouraged me to, and I wanted to be agreeable--not that I was a glutton, which is the spin
he likes to put on it).
Then after the spaghetti, Emily brought out a roast and potatoes, a complete meal. I had never heard of
such a thing. If we had spaghetti, that was the meal. Well, they all laughed at me and I felt a little
embarrassed and stupid.
I lived at Grandma "Mac's" for maybe 10 months or so, and although she was nice, I decided I
would prefer living alone; so I moved to 1647 N. Humboldt Blvd., a rooming house, but quite nice,
owned by a Swedish lady, Mrs. Olsen. Humboldt Park was lovely at that time, with a lagoon which
was used for ice skating in the winter and with pretty landscaping and walks.
Not too long after I moved here, Dad and I decided to get married.
We were married by the minister of the Austin Methodist Church in a private
ceremony attended only by the minister's lovely wife and daughters. Our
wedding trip was to Milwaukee in a terrible snowstorm. We stayed at the
Schroeder Hotel, Milwaukee's finest and quite beyond our means--really.
We even went all out and had dinner in their dining room with orchestra and
all.
When we told our landlady, Mrs. Olsen, that we were married and
Otto would be living there also, she congratulated us and said, "Oh, isn't that
nice!" Then she added very politely, "Well, that will be $5.50 a week then (I
had been paying $5.00). Dad always says that he replied, "here's my fifty
cents" which of course is one of his jokes.
We stayed at Humboldt Boulevard a short time and then rented the attic apartment at 4855 W.
George Street. When we first moved there, Otto was still working as a salesman for Lumberman's
Mutual, but that was all commission and not too reliable an income. I still worked at Retailers
Commercial until I was pregnant.
Then, in 1941, Dad got the job with Pitney-
Bowes, which paid a very small salary but at least it was
219
steady and we could manage.
Y ou were born and I loved taking care of you and
wheeling you around in the buggy. People would always
stop and admire my beautiful baby.
Pitney-Bowes Mailing Machine
219
In 1902, Arthur Pitney patented his first "double-locking" hand-cranked postage-stamping machine, and, with
patent attorney Eugene A. Rummler, founded the Pitney Postal Machine Company. In 1908, English emigrant and
founder of the Universal Stamping Machine Company Walter Bowes began providing stamp-canceling machines to
the United States Postal Service. Bowes moved his operations to Stamford in 1917. A rapid increase in mail
volume in 1919 made the Post Office more receptive to metered mail, and Pitney subsequently traveled to meet
Bowes. On March 15, 1920, the United States House of Representatives passed a bill authorizing mechanical
stamps on First-Class Mail, and on April 23, 1920, the two companies merged to form the Pitney Bowes Postage
Meter Company, with the goal of producing a machine that would combine Pitney's "double-locking" counter with
Bowes's system for wrapping postage payment, postmarking and cancellation. The U.S. Post Office approved their
postage meter on August 25, 1920.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pitney_Bowes
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Emily Paolini and Charlie Zickgraff
My father was involved with two organizations that sponsored dances in order to raise money:
his fraternity, Iota Alpha Chi, and the Gastaldo Boosters Club. For one of the dances, he sold tickets to his
sister and her friend, and it was at one of these dances that she met Charles Zickgraff.
Emily had not dated much before meeting Charlie, and she fell in love with him quickly and
deeply. My father assisted in their wedding plans. Having experience in renting halls for dances, he
rented a room for the reception at the Premier Hotel on the near westside of Chicago. Through his many
contacts, he was able to purchase flowers at a lower price, and he retained a band (most of whose
members were members of his fraternity) at no charge. He was the driver of the wedding party, but he
was late to pick up Charlie and his best man. Perhaps this minor incident may have strained their
relationship. Emily and Charlie wed on June 22, 1931.
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The couple moved in with Beatrice and my father at 5232 W. Altgeld but soon found a place of
their own in Elmwood Park and then in Austin on Mayfield Avenue. They eventually bought a two-flat at
1710 Central Avenue where their children were born and raised, and lived for the remainder of their
lives.
Emily was eager to have children, but her first child died ten minutes after birth. My mother
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remembers Emily sadly remarking while she was in hospital, "All the other mothers were holding their
babies and I had none."
Their daughter Carla was born May 15, 1937. My mother remembers: "Carla was about two years
old when I first saw her, and she was the prettiest, happiest, most intelligent child imaginable. Emily and
Charlie worshiped her, and she captivated everyone."
Their second daughter was Linda who was born October 11, 1940.
My mother and Emily were in the same hospital–St. Anne's–at the same time
as I was born on October 8.
While much as been written about prejudice and discrimination
toward Italians, neither I nor my cousins have ever knowingly experienced
it. The only incident of this kind–actually just the acknowledgment that
discrimination existed–was when Charley and Emily were looking for a
house to buy, the realtor pulled Charlie aside and said that there were
certain houses for which the owner would not sell to Italians even though
they might rent to them.
Linda Zickgraff
He did so despite his mother’s admonishment for when he announced his intention to marry an
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Italian, his mother warned him that much would be demanded of him as "Italian women were highly sexed."
E-mail response to inquiry by Vazquez, Susana, Queen of Heaven Cemetery, August 10, 2009.
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I imagine that Charlie Zickgraff felt like an odd man out among his in-laws. Although Catholic, he
was a German among Italians. He wasn't crude, but he seemed a bit rough around the edges. As his
son-in-law Roger Lauten said of him, "he was a shot and beer type of guy." However, Charlie often had
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more than one of each and became inebriated, a condition not viewed favorably by Italians as it was
deemed unmanly to lose control of oneself. He explained his drinking , to wit, that he had to have a
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drink at the tavern before going to work in order to have the courage to work the tall buildings as an iron
worker. Poor Emily was torn between the two factions in defending her husband while still remaining
loyal to her family and their Italian beliefs. From all reports, she succeeded with composure and
confidence.
As a child and as an adult, I was almost oblivious of relations among the adults. I always enjoyed
visiting my in-laws and playing with my cousins. In actual fact, I played with Linda and Carol Jean, who
were my age, and I admired my older cousins, Arthur Jr., Elaine and Carla, who told stories and joshed
one another. And then something happened!
It was about 1947, so I was about seven years old at the time. There was a family gathering at the
Zickgraff home, and I think that I was in a back room playing with Linda and Carol. Someone poked their
head inside the room and said that my family was leaving. I got up and walked into the dinning room
with everyone sitting silently at the dinning table and staring at me as I walked passed. I didn't think
much of it at the time, and was unaware that diplomatic relations had been severed between the
Zickgraffs and my family; but then neither did Humbert and Peter, the legates of Pope Leo IX realize that
they had just inaugurated the Great Schism in the Church in 1054.
I was told that there were two related incidents. The first occurred at Adolph and Evelyn's house.
Beatrice, who often talked to Emily in Italian, said something in Italian to Emily. Probably thinking that
something was being said so as not to include him, Charlie took offense, possibly saying something that
insulted Beatrice. Naturally my father jumped into the fray, and an war of words ensued. Perhaps a
month or two passed, and apparently Emily thought that hard feelings had subsided. She invited my
family to a gathering at her house. Charlie wasn't there when we arrived, but when he returned, he
spotted my father and said: "I want that guy out of my house." Hence our abrupt departure.
Husband of Carla Zickgraff.
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As told to the author by Robert Genzen, husband of Elaine Paolini, daughter of Adolph Paolini.
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Elaine Paolini remembers the incident that was the spark the ignited the fire: Arthur Jr., Carla,
and she wanted to go to the movies, but Charlie disallowed it. It seems to be the consensus of my mother
and Elaine that my father said something to Beatrice in Italian. Charlie took offense and harsh words
were said. Perhaps this was the first incident as reported by my mother.
As one can see, there is uncertainty as to the cause of the altercation. My father said that it
concerned the living arrangements of Beatrice and the Zickgraffs. When he went to Florida, Beatrice
could no longer afford her apartment on Polk Street, and so she moved in the Charlie and Emily. After
fifteen years, he was no longer content with the arrangement. Whether this situation was the subject of
an argument or an underlying cause of resentment and tension is unknown.
When my father returned from Florida in 1933, he lived with Zickgraffs in their apartment on
Mayfield Avenue as his mother was living with them as well. It is difficult to conceive–and certainly and
disconcerting to imagine–these two men occupying the same living quarters for about five years. It was
the period of the Great Depression and economic necessity demanded compromise. Such a compromise
is truly indicative of those desperate times.
I have to say that I had/have some sympathy for Charlie's position regarding Beatrice. If he felt it
were an imposition, I think he– r better, Emily–should have gathered the Paolini family and asked for a
commitment of money to provide housing for their mother. I can't imagine Beatrice being completely
comfortable after this quarrel. Apparently none of the brothers or sister thought to do so, and so Beatrice
lived the rest of her life with her daughter and son-in-law in a small, dark bedroom in the Zickgraff flat.
She deserved better!
All diplomatic relations were not broken between the two families. After a year or so, Emily
helped my mother get a job working with her for Syrena's which was a restaurant and catering firm.
Emily and my mother worked every weekend. They liked the work, and the tips were excellent so they
were able to save money, especially as my mother and father were looking forward to buying their own
home.
When my father, mother and I were living in Northbrook, we would occasionally invite Beatrice to
join us for a Sunday afternoon dinner. When I obtained my driver's license, I was given the assignment to
drive to Chicago and pick her up. I was quite proud to be given this important responsibility as I thought
that it was a demonstration of my parent’s trust . I had no idea that it was done simply to avoid my father
and uncle Charlie from meeting.
Upon my return from the military service, I settled in Chicago in order to attend graduate school.
I was invited to dinner at the Zickgraff house, and to meet Linda and her husband, John O'Conner. Poor
Charlie was literally a skeleton. He was dying of some disease but I don't remember which one. I
remember him saying something to the effect: "Yeah, I'm dying" in a somewhat defiant tone while
pinching his shriveled skin. He was a man who looked death straight in the eye without blinking.
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About 1990, my father and I visited Emily who, like her
mother, was staying with her daughter Linda and son-in-law John
O’Connor. I noticed that they had the ‘waffle iron,' which I later
learned is called a pizzelle iron, that Beatrice had brought from
Italy. When I was a child, my father had borrowed this relic of the
old country, and we actually made pizzelle in our fireplace in
Northbrook, Illinois. Pizzelle is a traditional Italian waffle cookies
made from flour, eggs, sugar, butter or vegetable oil, and flavoring
(often vanilla, anise, or lemon zest).
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I mentioned to my father that if Linda and John
did not want it, I would surly like to have it. I was so
very thankful and pleased to receive it, and I honor the
memory of my grandparents, uncles and aunt by its
resting next to my fireplace to remind me of them.
Emily developed Alzheimer's disease and passed
away in 2000. Tragically, Linda became afflicted with
same disease in 1997 at the age of fifty-seven and had to
be placed in a nursing home. She died in 2008.
Relations Among the Relatives
For the most part, the families of the daughter and sons of Beatrice and Alfredo were close and in
frequent contact. As mentioned above, the families of Armando and Arthur lived in the same building,
and the children freely visited each others apartments. The Zickgraffs lived only about three blocks away,
and Linda Zickgraff and Carol Jean Paolini were very close friends. Upon their marriages, Adolph and his
family were four blocks miles away from Armando and Arthur and Otto and his family were but three
miles away. In the course of time, Adolph moved about eight miles away and Otto moved twenty-two
miles away to the suburb of Northbrook, Illinois. These physical distances seem to reflect to some
degree the social distances of the families.
Obviously two brothers-two sisters families were quite close though they occasionally had their
differences with regard to the management of the apartment building. They had close relations with
Emily and Charlie because they all attended the same church and school: St. Angela; the two sets of
daughters were about the same age; and the three brothers and sister still maintained contact with their
mother, Beatrice. However, Charlie may have considered himself odd-man-out as he did not attend many
of the Paolini social affairs and Emily often went alone. In such a circumstance, Emily had conflicting
loyalties.
Pizzele Iron
Hunting scene design of the iron
“The first pizzelle makers were made of iron, in the Abruzzi region of Italy. Legend goes that some
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poor blacksmiths of the region used old railroad nails and pieces of track to forge the irons, called "ferratelle,"
referring to the ferrous metal. Because they were used over open fires, they had very long handles to keep the
user from getting burned.” Fante's Kitchen Wares Shop www.fantes.com
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Adolph was quiet, and not particularly social. His wife Evelyn more than made up for his silence,
but she was Lutheran. There seemed to be competition between Anna and Josephine versus Evelyn, e.g.,
when Anna and Josephine sent their children to private Catholic school (St. Angela), Evelyn sent her
children to a private Lutheran school (Luther North High School).
Otto Paolini perceived a great amount of jealously among the women and backbiting that made
him uncomfortable; they could out-talk him and at the same time prevented him from socializing with his
brothers which probably left him frustrated and furious. He therefore did not attend social affairs to a
great extent though he always enjoyed being with his brothers, especially Arthur with whom he like to
play golf.
Being rather quiet and shy, my mother did not engage in the competition but being blonde, blue-
eyes, and quite beautiful, she was envied and sometimes the object of catty remarks. As was typical of the
times, the men usually congregated in the living room while the women, engaged in preparing food or
washing and cleaning after the meal, were assembled in the kitchen. My mother often said that she
wished she could have joined the men as their conversations seem to be much more interesting.
Apparently Beatrice was not above the fray. Anna and Josephine felt that Beatrice looked down
upon them–that they were of a lower class. The Dinella were bracciante (laborers) in Italy while Beatrice
was piccolo borghese. Her opinion of the Dinella seem not to have influenced her view of marriage. One
day, Armando appeared at the home of his mother and declared that he could no longer live with his wife
Anna. Beatrice directed her son to return to his wife and work out their difference. The incident reflects
on the marriage of Armando and Anna which, by other accounts, was not harmonious. It also reflects on
Beatrice who, not having the best of marriages as well, held loyalty and fidelity as supreme values.
To illustrate the aggravations and resentments that often arose, my mother described the
disagreeableness of one episode. Family gatherings were often held to celebrate an event such as a
child's baptism, first communion, confirmation, graduation, etc. Such a celebration required that guests
bring a gift, and not just a token but something substantial. Given the number of children multiplied by
number of celebrations multiplied by the cost per gift, plus the expense of the party for one's own child,
the cost was rather substantial for which none of the families could afford.
For one Christmas, it was decided that each family would draw the name of one child for a
Christmas gift. My mother drew Joan Marie, the daughter of Armando and Anna. Emily had access to
shop at the Bargain Room at Montgomery Wards because Charlie's father worked for Wards. Emily
suggested a gift: a child's portable phonograph that normally retailed for $5.00 was selling for a $1.66.
They both bought one, and the next day Emily told Anna of the purchase. Anna harumphed: "Who'd want
one of those tinny phonographs. I wanted a sweater." So my mother went downtown to the Fair store
and found a pullover sweater that normally sold for $2.79 that was on-sale for $1.79. After Christmas,
Anna went to the store to exchange the pullover for a button-down sweater, and thus found out–and not
discreet in mentioning it–that my mother had paid only a $1.79. My mother said that if they really want
something in particular, they might as well buy it themselves. She pledged to herself that she would not
participate in any such an arrangement again, but was not put to the test as none was suggested.
No doubt it was this type of pettiness and crassness that my father could not tolerate and
therefore was reluctant to maintain close relations with his brothers and their spouses.
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Paolini Family at Joan Marie’s Wedding (1955)
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Isabel Daniels and Otto Paolini
Josephine Dinella and Arthur Paolini
Armando Paolini and Anna Dinella
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Chapter 17
The Dissolution of the Del Grande Family
As stated earlier, Don Francesco and his wife Gemma moved to Oak Park, Illinois, a town that
bordered the western boundary of the city of Chicago. It is believed that they initially rented an
apartment until they had their new house built at 921 S. Wenonah Avenue. Today, Wenonah is a
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beautiful, tree-lined street in a residential neighborhood not far from the east-west lanes of the
Eisenhower Expressway.
In the period from about 1915 until 1931, at various times it was the home of Don Francesco and
his wife, Gemma, their eldest son Hugo, their youngest daughter Lily, their second youngest son Albert
and his wife Mary Laframenta, their two daughters, Ethel and Bernice, and their daughter Mary Ines Del
Grande and her husband, Anthony Sirimarco, and their grandaughter, Emily Paolini.
Their second oldest daughter, Gilda, had married Dominic Del Vecchio in Utica, New York, and
they had relocated to Chicago with the Del Grande family. They lived in Chicago for about fifteen years as
the 1920 census shows that they lived at 512 Centre Avenue (now Racine Avenue), but then moved to St.
Louis Missouri as shown by the 1930 census. The Del Vecchios and the Del Grandes maintained contact
by post and they visited each other. My father tells of taking his mother Beatrice to see her sister in St.
Louis.
My father remembers driving around town with their youngest son, [Frank] Paul Del Vecchio,
who greeted many police officers that they encountered. He apparently had many scrapes with the law,
and it is recorded in the 1930 census that Paul was in the St. Louis city workhouse as a ‘prisoner.'
The Del Grande also maintained contact with their
third oldest daughter, Angiolina Del Grande who had married
Carmino Alfano. While they had moved to Chicago, probably at
the same time as the Del Grande family, they had returned to
Utica where they raised seven children. Many of the
photographs of Del Grande family members were in the
possession of the Alfano families. In the photograph here,
Gemma Castricone [Del Grande] is with Angeline (Nean)
Alfano, the second oldest daughter of Carmino and Angeline
Alfano.
Angeline (Nean) Alfano, Jack Dempsey,
and Gemma Castricone
Building permit N546 dated November 13, 1914 for 921 S. Wenonah Avenue, Oak Park, Illinois
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listing Francesco Del Grande as the owner and Borecca as the contractor for lot 43 & 44, block #1, section 18;
on file at the Buildings Section of the Village Clerk's Office, Oak Park, Illinois.
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Also mentioned earlier, Lily Del Grande enrolled in St. Joseph Convent where she was ordained
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June 25, 1918. She took, or, more accurately, was given, the name of Wilma. Her biographer writes:
...she then received her a degree from Marquette
University as a licensed medical technician, and from 1918 to
1964, she made the former St. Jude her work place. Many sisters
have memories of having to go to St. Jude to have Sister Wilma
draw their blood. She also taught chemistry and microbiology to
aspiring nurses attending Sacred Heart School of Nursing.
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In 1964, Sister Wilma took a vacation to Costa Rica
and stayed ten years. She learned how to operate a short-wave
radio and by this means kept the U.S. community informed of what
was happening in Costa Rica and kept the Costa Rican community
alerted to what was happening in the U.S. community. In 1974
Wilma returned to the United States, and taught Spanish.
By 1930, the Sirimarco family had moved to the house next
door at 919 S. Wenonah Avenue. The 1920's was the age of jazz
and musical theater, and so Anthony Sirimarco made a good
income. The increase in the size of the family–the birth of Bobby
in 1920 and Angelina in 1922–probably warranted a home of their
own.
On January 4, 1931, the Del Grande family lost is matriarch, Gemma Castricone. Nothing is
reported as to the circumstances or cause of death. She died at the age of seventy-four.
Sometime between the early 1930's and the early 1940's, it is reported by Dorothy Mae Del
Grande [Molenhouse] that a dispute arose among the Del Grande siblings. It is believed that the dispute
involved Albert, and that it caused him to move his family from the neighborhood on Wenonah to an
apartment at 6909 W. Roosevelt Road in Oak Park. In the 1940 census, the family is listed at this address,
and in the column entitled, "In What Place Did This Person Live on April 1, 1935," there is the entry
"Same Place." If there was a connection between the dispute and their relocation, it occurred prior to
1935. From Robert and/or Angelina (Ann) Sirimarco, Carol Jean Sirimarco reports that the dispute was
due to the award of the house to Albert and not Hugo, the oldest son. However, It is strange that Don
Francesco would have made this bequest, or even notice of this bequest, so far in advance of his
relocation and later passing. Therefore it is not entirely certain that this was the cause of the dispute.
By 1940, only Don Francesco and Hugo resided at 921 S. Wenonah, though Hugo is classified as
the head of household. Don Francesco had developed glaucoma, and therefore unable to work; the
census records Hugo was working as a tailor.
Sister Wilma
The convent was later called St. Joseph Center and continues as a residence for nuns of the order
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of School Sisters of St. Francis. A portion of the building has been converted to apartments for seniors.
“School Sisters of St. Francis to build apartments for seniors: 72 units planned for campus on Greenfield Ave.,”
Georgia Pabst of the Journal Sentinel, December 11, 2011.
Sister Ruthelda, “Sister Wilma Del Grande,” School Sisters of St. Francis, undated, received in an E-
227
mail from Mary Ann Eichenseer, May 2007.
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My mother, Isabel Daniels [Paolini] reported that Hugo often remarked that, "When the old man
(his father) dies, I am going to do thus and so with the house." Apparently he said this in such an
unfeeling way that it gave the impression that he was looking forward to his father's death. As fate would
have it, Hugo died in 1943 , seven years before his father.
228
Perhaps those heartless words got back to Don Francesco, for it is believed that he bequeathed
this house to Albert. It is also possible that there was another reason that may have strained relations
229
with his father and brother: Hugo was a homosexual.
230
As was his father, Hugo Del Grande was a tailor, and as one can see
from the accompanying photograph, he dressed quite fashionably, and he
is always well-dressed in all the photographs of him. Whether or not he
was miserly is not certain, but one of the family jokes was that Hugo always
carried a $50 bill, and when members of the family would go out for ice
cream or a drink, he would pull out his $50 bill and offer to pay. Of course,
shops at that time couldn't change a $50 bill, so he would have to apologize
and put the money back in his pocket.
The above paragraphs present a rather disparaging portrait of
Hugo Del Grande. It is known that he was a close friend as well as uncle to
Arthur Paolini Sr., and as such attests as to his good character. As
described below, he made a very noble gesture in his passing.
Just prior to has passing, Hugo Del Grande composed his will in
which he declared the following:
I, HUGO DELGRANDE, of the City of Chicago, County of Cook and State of Illinois, being
of sound and disposing mind and memory, do hereby make,, publish and declare ,this to be my
Last Will and Testament, hereby revoking all former Wills by me at any time made.
FIRST: I direct the payment of all my just debts, expenses of administration and
funeral expenses, as soon as practicable after my decease.
SECOND: I direct my administrator here in after named, to purchase a plot of ground
in Mt. Carmel Cemetery, and to erect a Mosoleum (sic) upon said plot of ground for my burial
in said Mosoleum (sic), and to expend the sum of Five Thousand Dollars ($5,000.00), for said
plot of ground and Mosoleum.
THIRD: I give, devise and bequeath to the SACRED HEART SANITARIUM, of
Milwaukee, Wisconsin, the sum of Five Hundred Dollars ($500.00).
Hugo Del Grande
He died of rheumatic valvular heart disease according to the certificate of death issued by the
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Department of Public Health, State of Illinois, November 3, 1943.
In order to determine the transfer of the deed of 921 S. Wenonah, on June 7, 2013, Karen Alfano
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and I visited the Recorder of Deeds of Cook County at 50 West Washington Street, Room 1113, Chicago, IL
60622. Staff persons were able to locate the book in which the transfers for the street/lots, but page 38 was
duplicated while page 36 was missing, and it is believed that page 36 contains the transfers for lot 43. (43 &
44, block #1, section 18).
Or so my father, Otto Paolini, believed.
230
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FOURTH: I give, devise and bequeath to my nephew, GEORGE DELGRANDE, J R. ,
of J ersey City, New J ersey, the sum of ' One hundred Dollars ($100.00).
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FIFTH: I give ,devise, and bequeath all the rest, residue and remainder of my
property, whether personal or real, of what nature or kind whatsoever, to the following, share
and share alike:
To my sister, MARY SIRIMARCO;
To my sister, GILDA DEL VICCHIO (sic) of St. Louis Missouri;
To my sister, ANGELINA ALFANO, of Utica, New York;
To my nephew, ARTHUR PAOLINI;
To my nephew, ADOLPH PAOLINI;
To my nephew, ARMANDO PAOLINI.
SIXTH: I nominate and appoint my nephew, ARTHUR PAOLINI, of Chicago,
Illinois, to be the executor of this, my Last Will and Testament, and request that he shall not be
required to give any bond to act as such executor.
This, my Last Will and Testament, consists of two (2) typewritten pages, this page
included, both of which bear my signature on the margins thereof. Dated at Chicago, Illinois,
this 2 day of J anuary, A. D. 1943.
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Carol Jean Paolini also reports that Beatrice Del Grande [Paolini] was required to identify the
corpses of those who were to be entombed, presumably Gemma and Donato, and that this was especially
distressful for her.
Again we have no dates or exact chronology of events, but it is believed that the Del Grande home
was sold, and the Albert Del Grande family returned to the neighborhood, residing across the street at
920 S. Wenonah. Hugo then moved in with his sister Ines and brother-in-law Antony Sirimarco next door
at 919 S. Wenonah.
My mother reports visiting the Del Grande house in the early 1940s and seeing Don Francesco in
his bed. He was frail and possibly blind by this time. Sister Wilma told her Mother Superior that she had
to leave and care for her father. Not able to spare her, Mother Superior told Sister Wilma to bring her
father to live at the Sacred Heart Sanitarium, which was located adjacent to the St. Joseph Convent. Thus
Don Francesco lived in the sanitarium in Milwaukee, Wisconsin until he passed away.
Perhaps Sister Wilma understated her father's financial position. When Don Francesco died in
1950, he left money to her. Having taken a vow of poverty, she turned the money over to the Franciscan
order. Apparently the Mother Superior was chagrined by the amount received as she had discounted the
charge for the care of Don Francesco.
Francesco Paolo Del Grande died on December 4, 1950.
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George Del Grande, Jr. is the grandson of Angiolo (Angelo) Del Grande, the brother of Don
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Francesco Del Grande.
The petition to the court by the executor, Arthur Paolini, was submitted on April 13, 1944.
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According to the records of Mount Carmel Cemetery, Hugo was not entombed until March 30, 1945, and so it
may be that the mausoleum was not completed until that time.
As of this writing (June 17, 2013), no will has been located.
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The concluding paragraphs of the biography of Italia Del Grande, a.k.a. Lillian, Lily, and Sister
Wilma, provide a fitting eulogy:
Wilma was a simple person who lived simply but was always ready for a good time.
While she mingled well with the students at St. Clare who came from more affluent families,
she was very much at home with boys and girls who came from the poor to the very poor
families. True, she was sometimes gruff in her ways, even offensive, but while she would not
go overboard in begging pardon for any offense she may have given, still her actions proved
what her heart was saying.
On Holy Thursday [April 16, 1987] God looked down on Wilma's littleness and loved
her and took her to Himself.
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In about 1943, the first of the three Albert Del Grande daughters, Bernice, moved to California,
having vacationed in the state and liking the weather compared to the cold and wind of Chicago. Ethel
and Dorothy Mae followed, and their father and mother eventually moved there as well in 1953. Carlo
Alberto Del Grande died in 1973 in North Hollywood, California as did his wife, Mary Laframenta in 1988.
The Sirimarco family remained in Oak Park, and Antonio passed away in 1960 at the age of
seventy-three and Maria Ines Del Grande [Sirimarco] died in 1971. Both are buried at Queen of Heaven
Cemetery in Hillside, Illinois. Their son Robert joined the army during the Second World War and was
stationed in Colorado for a time. Liking the area, he relocated there permanently after the war. His sister,
Angelina (Ann) joined the Navy during the war and married a sailor man, and moved often as his orders
dictated. Today she lives in Gulf Shores, Alabama.
The ending tale of the Del Vecchio family is indeed a sad one. The only information we have
comes from Carol Jean Sirimarco who probably heard reports from her father Robert who had heard
reports from his father Antonio Sirimarco.
Dad [Robert Sirimarco] told me that Domenico (Dad always referred to him as
Dominick) was an alcoholic and mean to Gilda and the children. When his daughter Nancy was
young, she went up to him when he came home and he pushed her away. She fell down some
stairs and injured her leg very badly. She walked with a limp for the rest of her life. When she
married, her husband cruelly referred to her as "the cripple". Although Gilda was unhappy in
her marriage, she would not leave him.
Aunt Ann [Angelina Sirimarco] told me of when Gilda came to Chicago for a State
Fair of some sort. Grandpa Sirimarco drove them there. Gilda had been treated for cancer of the
uterus, but was supposedly in remission. When they went to the ladies room and Gilda came
out, there was blood all over her dress. Aunt Ann went to call Grandpa to pick them up. Gilda
returned to St. Louis and passed away shortly thereafter.
After her death, Domenico would not let his daughters touch anything that had
belonged to Gilda. She passed away in Aug. 1944, Domenico in April, 1945.
Sister Ruthelda, biography of Sister Wilma Del Grande.
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Beatrice Del Grande [Paolini]
When Otto married in 1939, the Zickgraffs and Beatrice moved to 1710 N. Central Avenue in
Chicago. It was to be her home for the rest of her life.
Their daughter Carla Zickgraff was born in 1937 and Linda Zickgraff was born in 1940. As a live-
in nanny, Beatrice helped raise these two girls. She even accompanied them to their local church, St.
Angela. Beatrice had not attended church since the death of Alfredo when the Church officials had
initially ruled that Alfredo could not be buried in consecrated ground for having taken his own life. Even
though the Church had overturned its initial ruling, the fight to have the decision reversed must have left
Beatrice feeling somewhat bitter and disillusioned with the Church. She must have taken delight in her
many other grandchildren: Joan Marie, Elaine, Cheryl, Candace, Arthur, Carol Jean, and Armand Roderick.
It is not known when Beatrice retired, but she turned sixty-six in 1945 and would have been able
to retire from employment and collect social security and possibly a pension. She certainly retired before
1952 for in that year she took a trip. Accompanied by her sons Armando and Arthur, the three of them
traveled to New York City. Apparently her sons argued with one another constantly, much to her
annoyance. During the trip, she concluded: "I can do this by myself," meaning that she could travel alone.
The following year, she traveled to Utica, New York in order to visit her sister, Angeline Del Grande
[Alfano]. It is likely that they had not seen each other for many years. Not bothering to write, she simply
arrived at the Alfano’s door unannounced: Angeline opened the door and exclaimed, "Beatrice!" She
had recognized her sister immediately.
Her nephew Hugo Del Grande died in 1943, and
unexpectedly, he willed her some money. With this
inheritance, she was able to afford a trip to Europe, primarily
Italy of course, in order to return to her ancestral home.
Based upon the post cards that she sent to my family, she
traveled to Genoa, Pisa, Florence, Milan and Venezia as well
as Naples and Popoli. In Rome, she reported that she was in
St. Peter’s Square and received the blessing of the Pope [Pius
XII]. She sailed on the Andrea Doria, the beautiful but
ill-fated ship that was rammed broadside by the Swedish
ship Stockholm near Nantucket three years later on July 25,
1956.
In telling people of her trip, some of her audience
would make a comparison to the United States or Chicago. Beatrice would always insist, "I think Chicago
best." Only she could appreciate the many attractions, cultural events, and availability to average people
that America affords: its art galleries, museums, concert halls and the means of getting to them via public
transit. She appreciated the many modern conveniences that are sometimes take for granted or derided
as ‘commercialism' or ‘materialism.' During a family gathering at our home in Northbrook, Illinois, a
suburb of Chicago, my father was going to cook meat on the barbeque grill in the backyard. Beatrice
wondered why anyone would use a cumbersome and sooty implement when one could use a clean and
easy to use oven in the kitchen. When living in Italy, she had to build and maintain a fire as the same time
as preparing the food, an onerous and time-consuming task that had no quaint nor culinary appeal.
Andrea Doria
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Beatrice often attended performances of the symphony and the opera. My mother reported:
I went to quite a few concerts with Beatrice at Grant Park and at the 8th Street Theater
where WGN sponsored concerts by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, so I saw how she
interacted with her friends and how much they liked and respected her.
My mother and father accompanied her to an opera [Faust] one evening at the Civic Opera House.
She had friends from the clothing factory who also worked as ushers at the opera house. She would buy a
ticket for an inexpensive seat, and then one of her friends would move her in a much better location, often
after the first act. On the occasion with my parents, she complained to her colleague, "If you can't get me
better seats than these, I'll have to see [another usher friend]."
Even in her later years, she continued to attend the opera even though her family didn't think that
she should go alone. Her daughter Emily, with whom she was living, tried to persuade to stay home.
Beatrice retorted, "What better place to die than at the opera." In the end, her son Arthur accompanied
her.
My mother tells of this incident of which I vaguely
remember; I was probably about six:
When you were very small, I took you
to one concert in Grant Park. I took you down
to the section where Beatrice and her friends
sat. Her friends immediately said, "There are
no seats here." Beatrice took my arm and said,
"There is a seat here for you–they just said that
because they saw the child and thought he
would be noisy." Of course you were
enthralled by the orchestra and when they
played Brahms' "Academic Festival Overture,"
you stood up and imitated the orchestra leader,
keeping perfect tempo. They were so
impressed and delighted by this, and of course
Beatrice was proud as could be, as was I.
Civic Opera House Auditorium
Civic Opera House
www.sillyamerica.com
James C. Petrillo band shell in Grant Park
circa 1950
www.grantparkmusicfestival.com
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About 1968, I took my grandmother to the concert at Grant park one evening. The concert started
at 8:00pm, but we arrived about 6:00pm in order to get seats on the front row benches as these concerts
were free, and there was no reserve seating. As there had been twenty-two years prior, a group of about
fifteen to twenty aficionados of classical music and the symphony orchestra were already in place, many
of them munching on light fare and sipping wine. Greeting her by her nickname, “Bice” they invited us to
sit down and converse as we waited for the performance. It was a beautiful evening, and I could tell that
my grandmother was in her element.
In January 1969, Beatrice was admitted to the hospital. I visited her a few times, but I hardly
knew what to say or ask–another opportunity lost. “I die!” she said. It was as though she had hit me in
the forehead. Again, I didn’t know what to say and so I said nothing. I wanted to comfort her. I wanted to
ask her what she thought of her life. I wanted to ask her if she was prepared. But I just stared at her.
The day after I last saw her, I received a telephone call early the next morning from my cousin
Carol Jean Paolini: “Grandma died.”
There was the usual funeral at John A. Rago & Sons on Western Avenue in Chicago. Before this
funeral, those that I attended were always for people I hardly knew; so they were more like social
occasions. This one felt as though I had lost something–that something had slipped through my fingers. I
couldn’t say much because I couldn’t feel anything. I was bewildered.
I may be mistaken, but it seems that these days there is a service for the deceased in which
everyone has an opportunity to offer a eulogy–a remembrance of that person and an expression of
appreciation for what they did and for who they were. I don’t remember a eulogy for my grandmother.
This storia is the best I can do.
Maria Beatrice Del Grande [Paolini]
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Paolini Gravestone
in
Mount Carmel Cemetery
Baby Zickgraff and Donato Paolini are also buried at the grave site as
represented by the two urns.
Angiola Paolini, mother of Alfredo Paolini, is also buried in Mount Carmel
Cemetery but not at this site. As of this writing, her gravestone has not be
found.
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Mausoleum in Mount Carmel Cemetery
There are three vaults in the mausoleum. Entombed are
Gemma Castricone [Del Grande], Ungaro [Hugo] Tarquinio Del Grande,
together, Francesco Paolo Del Grande, and Donato Del Grande.
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Epilogue
After completing the research on my Italian ancestors–reading the history of Italian immigrants,
hearing the stories of my grandmother, aunts and uncles, and reflecting on their lives–I wish that I had more
involvement in my extended family. My father often said that he had the most wonderful childhood
imaginable, and that he and his brothers always got along together. The four Paolini families and the
Zickgraff’s lived within walking distance of each other! Why had we not resided in the Italian neighborhood
of Austin as our relatives did?
Certainly the break with the Zickgraffs reduced our contact with the family. We did not attend
events at the Zickgraff house and probably avoided those at which Charlie was likely to attend.
A second factor was my father’s dislike of the rivalry among the spouses of his brothers such as
whose children were smarter, whether or not they were going to a private school, who had a new car, etc.
This rivalry was due, in part, to the times. After the Depression and the Second World War, pent up
consumption ran rampant; and these working class Italians who had struggle before and during those
periods were now ready, willing and able to join the middle class.
While never said it directly, there was no doubt that we and they had a different view of religion in
general, and the Roman Catholic Church in particular. Religion was a part of their life: in addition to
attending church, all their children attended private, religious school: the Catholic Paolini’s and Zickgraffs to
St. Angela while the Lutherans went to Luther North High School, a private Lutheran school. The Catholic
children: Joan Marie, Carla, Linda and Carol were all married in St. Angela Church. They were devout
believers while we thought they were superstitious; they would all be save, but for us Paolini’s with no
religion, we were going to hell.
The last and probably the most significant reason for our residence away from the Italian
neighborhood was the influence of my father’s high school fraternity brothers. They were WASPS: Jack
Trumbull, Don Westergreen, Jack Freeman, Charlie Ham, Gene Hyer, etc. My father attended high school in
the mid-1920's, a time when there was still residual prejudice toward Italian immigrants, and then
heightened by the connection with America’s most notorious mobster, the Italo-American Alphonse "Al"
Gabriel Capone. Yet his fraternity brothers accepted my father as a brother. After graduation from Austin
High School, they married and moved to the suburbs; my father followed suit.
After my father and mother married, they lived at 4855 W. George Street, just north of the Austin
area. We lived briefly–less than a year--in Glen Ellen, and then returned to Chicago in a Polish neighborhood
in a community [now] called Avondale. After about five years there, we moved to the suburb of Northbrook
in 1951. Northbrook had a different style than Austin.
One of my cousins said: “We were blue-collar workers and your Dad was white collar.” It’s true that
my father wore a white collar, but he worked on Pitney-Bowes business machines as a service
technician–hardly a white-collar job. We did live in a beautiful neighborhood with large homes occupied by
families whose heads of household were executives and lawyers. And so did we, but probably what wasn’t
readily apparent is that my father and mother built most of that house, and that’s no figure of speech.
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The builder went bankrupt at the stage in which the kitchen was operable, the stairs to the second
floor and basement were installed, and there was rough flooring for the second floor. We moved in and I
remember sleeping on a bed that was sitting on top of drywall sheets. My father installed the insulation,
drywall, molding, hardwood flooring, doors, upstairs plumbing, and bathroom tile. My mother painted the
rooms and molding. The dirt from the foundation was piled about ten feet high in the backyard, and my
father, together with a guy with a tractor and a scoop, distributed the dirt over the entire lot. The equity in
the house was not from a large down payment but from sweat!
I felt–to a very limited extent--that we were imposters, especially when I attended Glenbrook [North]
High School and met the kids from Glenview who were even richer than the kids from Northbrook. Still, I
think we carried it off quite well. My mother and father both seemed quite comfortable with this class and
their life styles.
In 1994, there was a reunion with some of my cousins, and Elaine commented that we were viewed
as ‘country cousins’. In contrast, when we visited at Armando’s and Arthur’s six-flat on Hirsch Street, I
always thought of them as ‘landlords’ who owned income-producing property.
There was a marked contrast in the social occasions between those in Northbrook and those at the
Paolini gatherings. The social gatherings in Northbrook were quiet affairs. One person talked; the others
listened. Voices were hardly ever raised except for an occasional laugh. Everyone sat to form one
group–men and women together. Of course, most of the time I was alone with just my parents.
In contrast, the Paolini gatherings were like a three-ring circus, and I wanted to watch all three rings:
play with my cousins; listen to the men in the living room; listen and watch the women preparing food in the
kitchen. There were multiple conversations, and everyone had an opinion. I often thought that the men
were arguing based upon the tone of their voice; but when I actually listened to the words, they weren’t; it
was just how the talked. I found that very confusing. The women were not much different. Once I was
sitting at the dinning room table as we were preparing to eat, and I heard aunt Josie (Josephine) screeching
in the kitchen and I became alarmed: was a violent argument about to ensue and ruin the occasion? Usually
she was yelling at her son Art jr., but no: she calmly walked into the dinning room continuing her summons
for everyone to come to the table.
Aunt Evelyn was similar in that when she talked or argued–it was difficult for me to tell which–her
eyes would narrow and her voice would grate like fingernails on a blackboard. These women were such a
contrast to my own mother who I have never heard raise her voice to this day!
Often these conversations were carried on while eating buffet style as there were too many people to
sit around a table. And so the conversation ranged across the room with responses coming from every
direction.
I loved the fact that there were so many other kids to play with, primarily Linda and Carol. I
watched and listened to Art jr. who was my idol and who I thought was the coolest ‘dude’ to coin a current
cliché.
I wonder what my life would have been like had we lived in this Italian milieu in the same way I
wonder what my life would have been like had we lived in my mother’s small home town of Harmony,
Minnesota, or the town of Popoli in the Abruzzo, or a Greek city on the Aegean coast of Anatolia–all
marvelous possibilities that I can only imagine.
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Appendix A
Manifest of the ship SS Moltke
The Manifest
A ship's manifest was a list of the passengers on the ship for a particular voyage. Not consistent over
time, it was a form prepared by the U.S. Department of Commerce and Labor, and it contained some of the
following information:
• ship name and date of entry to the United States
• name of passenger
• age, height, eye and hair color
• sex
• marital status
• occupation
• whether able to read and write [but not what language]
• one's nationality, place of birth
• last place of last residence
• seaport for landing in the United States
• final destination
• relationship to accompanied passenger(s)
• name and address of relatives they are joining in the U.S.
• amount of money they are carrying, etc.
• Ever in prison or almshouse or supported by charity; if yes, which
• Whether a polygamist
• Whether under contract, express or implied to labor in the United States
• physical condition, i.e., mental, physical, deformed, cripple (this information was certified by a
doctor).
The top of the manifest form of the SS Moltke states: "Saloon, Cabin and Steerage Aliens must be Completely
Manifested. This Sheet is for Steerage passengers."
This information was recorded by ship personnel. It is quite likely that the accuracy depended upon
the language by which the ship's personnel communicated with the immigrant. A ship under an Italian flag,
such as the Regina d'Italia by which the Del Grande family immigrated in 1898, probably had an Italian
speaking crew while a ship under a German flag, such as the SS Moltke by which the Paolini family
immigrated in 1906, probably had a German speaking crew.
It is widely believed that the names of immigrants were changed by American immigration officials,
but, as far as I have been able to determined, immigration officials at Ellis Island did not issue any document.
The only record used was that of the manifest, and so this was the source of unintended name changes.
Many immigrants changed their name of their own accord.
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Naturalization
I find it quite surprising that this rather sloven and group record became an ‘official’ document that
was later used in the process of a person’s naturalization. In 1926, the occupation column was set aside for
annotations relating to the verification of immigration records for naturalization purposes. Since 1906, no
immigrant who arrived after June 29, 1906, could be naturalized until the government located their
immigration record. Thus since 1906, after an immigrant filed a Declaration of Intention or a Petition for
Naturalization in a naturalization court, the Bureau of Naturalization was called upon to provide certification
of the immigrant's arrival record. The certification, called a "Certificate of Arrival," was sent to the
courthouse to satisfy the naturalization requirement.
From 1906 to 1926 this activity took place without any notation made on the passenger list.
Beginning in 1926, clerks began to record the verification (record check) and certification activity on each
passenger list record. This change came about in response to a terrible scandal about a number of
fraudulent naturalizations. By noting that a given immigration record had been used to support an
individual naturalization, the annotation served in future to prevent anyone else from using that record for
another naturalization. While the annotations may be found on any passenger list, before or after 1926, they
will all relate to naturalization activity occurring in 1926 or later. Also, the passenger lists were microfilmed
in 1942/43, so records of immigrants who arrived earlier but did not begin the naturalization process until
after 1942 could not be annotated. All the verification for naturalization annotations follow a prescribed
format containing one or more of the following elements: District number where the application was filed,
application number, form number, and date of verification.
Beatrice Paolini did not apply for naturalized citizenship until 1935, and did so probably in response
to the passage of the Social Security act in 1935 with FICA withholding starting in 1937. Notice in the
occupation column there is the written notation 11-87889-505-1-7-35 which means that she petitioned in
the 11th district (Chicago), her case number (87889), the document/form issued (505), and the date of
verification (1-7-1935).
It is also noted that there is a hand-written letters ‘SI' next to each of the adults–Alfredo, Beatrice and
Gemma–and the word ‘ADMITTED' stamped on the manifest line numbers. The ‘SI' stands for ‘special
inquiry' and that they had to undergo further investigation. On a subsequent page of the manifest entitled,
‘Record of Aliens Held for Special Inquiry,' only Alfredo's name is listed. The reason for the inquiry is
recorded as ‘LPC' which stands for "Likely Public Charge." My guess is that he exhibited signs of his stroke.
He was examined by an inspector named English and that he received a ‘Dr. Cert.' Obviously he was
deemed not to become a public charge due to the support that could be provided by his wife and her family.
Angiola was not listed as having been selected for ‘special inquiry' but a note on her listing states:
‘senile debility and double cataracts.'
The date of the ‘Special Inquiry' is recorded as ‘6/5' or June 5; the record of meals shows 21
breakfasts, 28 lunches, and 21 dinners for seven people. This data raises the question as to how long they
stayed at Ellis Island. The SS Moltke arrived on June 1st and the special inquiry as on June 5th; thus they had
to have been there at least five days. If the story of missing the boat due to Arthur being lost, perhaps it was
six days. My guess is that the number of meals was only while they were in special inquiry. They may have
been in special inquiry only four days and three nights based upon the meal record. So where were they the
remainder of the time? It is possible that they had to wait for processing on board the SS Moltke; my friend
Norma explains:
there were many, many Special Inquiries and I'm sure they were so far behind that many of
them had to remain on board the ship until there was room for them elsewhere. What a frightening
experience for them.

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While the immigrant was held, someone (usually someone from an Immigrant Aid Society) at Ellis
Island would send a telegram to relatives here in the USA and the relatives would send a letter or telegram
back to let the authorities know that they would be responsible and would care for the family being held.
The authorities then released the immigrant.
Last, it is interesting that the category of nationality for the family is not Italian but ‘Southern Italian.’
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Appendix B
Italy’s Commissariat of Emigration
On 31 January 1901 the Commissariat of Emigration was created, granting licenses to carriers, enforcing
fixed ticket costs, keeping order at ports of embarkation, providing health inspection for those leaving,
setting up hostels and care facilities and arranging agreements with receiving countries to help care for
those arriving. The Commissariat tried to take care of emigrants before they left and after they arrived. This
included dealing with the labor laws in the US that discriminated against alien workers (the US alien
contract labor law of 1885) and even suspending, for a while, emigration to Brazil, where many migrants
had wound up as virtual slaves on large coffee plantations.
The Commissariat also helped to set up remittances sent by emigrants from the United States back to their
motherland, which turned into a constant flow of money amounting, by some accounts, to about 5% of the
Italian national product. In 1903 the Commissariat also set the available ports of embarkation as Palermo,
Naples and Genoa, excluding the port of Venice which had previously also been used.
Italian diaspora, Wikipedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Italian_diaspora#Emigration.2C_1870-1914
Having become a major social and economic phenomenon, and admittedly a very significant one, Italian
emigration received special bureaucratic recognition in the law of January 31, 1901; this measure created
the Commissariat of Emigration, a technical organ under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, to unify migration
services hitherto dispersed among various ministries. The law of 1901 and subsequent legislation
empowered the Commissariat to grant licenses to carriers, fix cost of tickets, maintain order in ports of
embarkation, establish and manage hostels for emigrants, provide information, suspend emigration, inspect
emigrants on departure, grant permits to recruit workers for European countries (emigration agencies
having been abolished by the law of 1901), ensure protection of emigrants on board ships through the
medium of traveling commissioners, prepare international agreements on emigration and labor, and give aid
and protection to emigrants in foreign countries. Carriers were required to lodge emigrants in case of delay
in departure, to meet safety and hygienic standards for transporting both expatriates and repatriates, and to
restore transportation costs to migrants rejected by immigration authorities provided it could be proved
that the legal requirements were known to the undertaking before departure.
Cometti, Elizabeth, “Trends in Italian Emigration,” The Western Political Quarterly, Vol. 11, Issue 4,
December 1958, pp. 820-834.
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Appendix C
Ethnic Territories of the Near West Side
The Jews lived almost entirely below Taylor Street and, in later years, to the south of Roosevelt Road.
The Greeks settled around Harrison, Blue Island and Halsted on the northeast fringe of the area and
remained there until the 1940's when the construction of the Congress Expressway more or less destroyed
their community except for a few night clubs and coffee shops. The French Canadians were located mostly
around Flournoy and Loomis where their church (Our Lady of Provins) still stands. The Poles, Bohemians,
and Germans seem to have been more dispersed. Italians filled up the open spots and gradually moved in
until they almost entirely occupied the area between Roosevelt and Harrison, Ashland and Halsted. Then,
between 1930 and 1960, the situation changed to what it is today (see map 2). This account of ethnic
movements has been garnered from Jane Addams, Twenty Years at Hull House (New York: New American
Library, 1961); E.W. Burgess, Urban Areas of Chicago, ed. T.V. Smith and L.D. White (Chicago: University of
Chicago Press, 1929); Frank Carney “Experimental Area III-X (Addams),” Unpublished Report (Chicago
Youth Development Project, 1961); Louis Wirth, The Ghetto (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1956);
Wlefare Council of Metropolitan Chicago, Community Area 28–The Near West Side (1953).
Suttles, Gérald D., The Social Order of the Slum: Ethnicity and Territory in the Inner City, The University of
Chicago Press, Chicago, 1968, p. 17, footnote 4.
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Appendix D
Arrigo Park
Arrigo Park, known as Vernon Park for much of its history, dates to 1857, when real estate developer Henry
D. Gilpin donated the property to the City of Chicago. The city soon created a shaded "breathing spot" with
an artificial lake and a few benches. In 1871, the modest residences surrounding Vernon Park fell to the
flames of the Chicago Fire. Commercial institutions and transient rooming houses took their place. The
park, too, deteriorated into a boggy mess as surrounding streets and structures were raised up to improve
sewage removal and prevent flooding.
When the city transferred Vernon Park to the West Park Commission in 1885, rehabilitation began
immediately. To alleviate the drainage problem, the commission filled the artificial lake and raised the
ground level of the entire site with additional fill. In 1893, the commission undertook extensive landscape
improvements and electrified the park. The park was expanded to its present 6.14 acres the following year.
The West Park Commission transferred Vernon Park to the newly-created
Chicago Park District in 1934. Forty years later, the greenspace was officially
renamed Arrigo Park in honor of Victor Arrigo (1908-1973). A vocal advocate
for the Italian-American community, Arrigo served as Illinois State
Representative for Chicago’s near southwest side from 1966 to 1973. Arrigo
was instrumental in bringing sculptor Moses Ezekiel’s statue of Christopher
Columbus to the park in 1966. First exhibited in the Italian pavilion at the 1893 World’s Columbian
Exposition, the bronze figure later graced a second-story alcove on State Street’s Columbus Memorial
Building. After the building came down in 1959, the statue went into storage. Arrigo argued that Columbus
should find a new home in the city’s oldest continuously Italian-American neighborhood, which was then
experiencing wrenching transformation due to the construction of the University of Illinois’ Circle Campus.
Chicago Park District:
http://www.chicagoparkdistrict.com/index.cfm/fuseaction/parks.detail/object_id/8521FAD9-86B7-4B62-
AC57-A8007EA1AD51.cfm
Arrigo Park
801 S. Loomis St.
Chicago, IL 60607
Phone: 312.746.5369
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Appendix E
Italian Funeral Customs
Religious Customs
Catholic: Catholic funerals vary according to individual, family and church. Typically, the second or third day
after a loved one passes away, the family will hold a "wake" or "calling hours," usually held at a funeral
home. Immediately following the wake or on the third or fourth day, the funeral is held. The funeral service
may stand alone, or be part of a bigger ceremony known as a mass. It is important to explain the difference
between the two basic masses. If the body is present the mass is called a Mass of Christian Burial. If the
body is not present or if the cremains are present, the term used is a Memorial Mass. During mass, the priest
reads from Scripture, leads prayers and administers Holy Communion. A funeral reception may also be held
after the services, where food and/or drink are often served, depending on the deceased’s family’s wishes.
Cultural Traditions
Italian: In the Italian-American family, death is a great social loss and brings an immediate response from the
community. It means sending food and flowers, giving money, and congregating at the home of the
deceased. The funeral remains very much a family and community event. Within the context of fatalism in
Catholicism, it is explained that the death was inevitable, and many Italian-Americans view death as "God’s
will." More traditional families hold anniversary masses for the deceased and wear black for months or
years. This is not as common among younger generations. Emotional outpourings can be profuse and the
activities around a funeral provide distinct examples of the Italian-American way of ritualizing life events.
Family members may moan and scream for the deceased throughout the church. Screaming is an effort to
ensure that Jesus, Mary, and the saints hear what the bereaved are thinking and feeling. Family members get
up constantly to touch and talk to the deceased loved one. Then, the priest intones the farewell: "May the
angels take you into paradise, may the martyrs welcome you on your way." While men mourn, they do so in
the fashion of "pazienza" - patience. Their constant, silent, and expressionless presence may be their only
act of public mourning. The real time of sorrow comes at the end of the ceremony when the priest and non
family congregation say good-bye to the deceased. At this time, the family is on their own for a time with
their loved one.
Stapleton Holdrege Funeral Services, http://www.cranstonfuneral.com/cultural.htm
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Appendix F
St. Mary Training School for Boys
Our History
Originally called St. Mary Training School for Boys, Maryville Academy was established in 1883 on 880 acres
north of Des Plaines, Illinois. The first Archbishop of Chicago, Patrick Feehan, created the school as a home
for boys - mostly orphaned and roaming the streets of Chicago. The idea was to give these youth an
education and the opportunity to learn a trade that would serve them later in life.
As times changed, so did St. Mary’s. The orphanage became co-educational in 1911 and eventually included
a grade school and a four year high school, both of which operated through the late sixties. Through
epidemics, world wars and economically difficult times, Maryville Academy was always there for children in
need.
In the 1970s, 80s, and 90s, under the direction of Rev. John P. Smyth, Maryville Academy became home to
hundreds of children who were wards of the State of Illinois. With the influx of so many children, Father
Smyth introduced the Family Teaching Model at Maryville Academy, replacing old dorms with modern
residential cottages where the children participated in the running and management of their own homes.
They took part in chores, menu planning, grocery shopping, and budgeting under the supervision of a "live
in" married couple supported by a staff of social workers, consultants and counselors.
Today, under the leadership of Sister Catherine M. Ryan, O.S.F, Maryville’s Executive Director, our focus is
still on children, as well as the preservation of the family. Maryville Academy’s innovative programs that
incorporate family support include: the Maryville Crisis Nursery and the Maryville Children’s Healthcare
Center in Chicago; the Maryville MISA Program for adolescents with mental illness and substance use
disorder in Des Plaines; along with other programs for young people with intellectual challenges; parenting
teens and their children; and the Scott Nolan Acute Psychiatric Hospital for children, adolescents and young
adults located in Des Plaines.
2010 marks Maryville Academy’s 127th year in the service of children and their families.
© 2010 Maryville Academy 1150 N River Road, Des Plaines, IL 60016 847.294.1999
http://www.maryvilleacademy.org/subpages.asp?id=16&parentid=29
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Appendix G
Descendants of Francesco Paolo Del Grande

The Del Grande and Paolini Families

written by Armand Roderick Paolini

Original 2011
Updated 2013

Prologue As our two grown children, Nicole and Jared, have yet to start families of their own, they have been able to join my wife and me on our family vacations: California, Wyoming, and our respective hometowns of Bloomington and Chicago, Illinois. Wanting to take advantage of their freedom to travel, I proposed another family vacation at Christmas, 2006. I was thinking of another national park in the United States, but Jared proposed South America. My response was emphatic: if we were to consider foreign travel, there were only two possibilities: Türkiye and Italy. The latter choice was unanimous. In planning the trip, I started to read several travel guides to Italy, and so became overwhelmed at the possibilities. I had no idea how to organize a trip that would not be a blur of train rides, hotels, piazzas and churches. I discussed the problem with my wife Kathy, who immediately said that Nicole and Jared would want to see the hometown of their great grandparents. I considered the possibility. My grandparents were born in a town in the Abruzzo, a mountainous region on the eastern edge of the Italian peninsula. Kathy and I had visited the town in 1973, and while quaint, it certainly was not remarkable. My grandparents had moved to the city of Naples upon their marriage, and they lived there for ten years before immigrating to America. To visit this city gave me apprehension to say the least. Kathy and I had traveled in Italy in 2003, and we have spent a day in Naples, terrified that we were going to be mugged and our purses stolen. While no such event occurred, the warnings and stories of persons who had not been so fortunate gave me pause. To make the visits to both Popoli and Naples meaningful, I had hoped to identify the houses where my grandmother, Maria Beatrice Del Grande, and my grandfather, Ildebrando Alfredo Paolini, had lived. I thought that their birth and marriage records would have their family's address, and that such records were maintained by both civil and church authorities. In Naples, Alfredo and Beatrice operated a tailor shop for women's clothes, and they lived in an apartment above the shop. Since five sons were born in Naples, records of their births would be recorded by both civil and church authorities. I therefore plunged into the labyrinth of family genealogy. I knew that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons) has collected birth records from all over the world so that their adherents could rescue the departed souls of their ancestors who had never learned of Jesus Christ and who were languishing in purgatory. The Church had established the Family History Library in Salt Lake City to coordinate and hold these records that had been captured on microfilm. I located the film of the Registri dello stato civile (1809-19100) and began my search, but I was soon overwhelmed. The quality of the image was poor, and I could hardly decipher, let alone translate, the Italian script. I therefore turned to a professional in the field. Residing in the city of L’Aquila in the Abruzzo region where the town of Popoli is located, Pierangela Badia responded to my inquiry: "Popoli is not a large place. In some indexes I have I found the birth of Del Grande Gilda in the year 1882, a Del Grande Donato in 1887, a Del Grande Ungaro (your Hugo?) in 1889." She sounded as though she knew these people! She provided a report of her findings, mainly the birth records of the Del Grande children, that is, the siblings of my grandmother, her father Francesco Paolo Del Grande and her mother Gemma Castricone. She did provide addresses from their birth records, but none of the streets could be found on a current map of the town. For records in Naples, I employed the services of Joe De Simone who was able to locate the civil i

marriage. triumphs. A genealogical history is never complete but in 2008. Armando Rod Paolini January. She reads Italian. who resides in Salt Lake City. who. I received an E-mail from Karen Alfano. The Family of Beatrice and Alfredo Paolini . and uncovering several mysteries and gaps in the histories of my immediate ancestors. I purchased an ongoing subscription. Carolyn B." she demurred. I have come in contact with several hitherto unknown relatives. a second cousin and descendant of one of my grandmother’s brother. we are deepening our knowledge and perpetuating the history of the Del Grande and Paolini families. photographs. Tracing Our Italian Roots . and I deleted one of the names in the database. when requested to do research outside the bounds of "birth. After our trip to Italy in 2008. the history of the Del Grande and Paolini families in Italy. Upon my return. and death. a first cousin once removed and a descendant of my aunt Emily. we found Robert Sirimarco. to my Del Grande . and the identity and burial place of Arcangela Del Grande. As we continue to share facts. Within a day. Among the most noteworthy was the elimination of nonexistent Marie Marie Paolini who was mistaken for Marie Ines Paolini. particularly from Donna Dengler and Daniel Else. stories.S. I wrote three papers: A Trip to Italy 2008: Tracing the Roots of our Italian Ancestors . marriage. But most assistance was rendered and is still being received from Norma Milas. I wanted to focus on identifying the churches of my grandparents. And so I was on my own. one of my grandmother’s sisters.com and I had entered three names into its online database. I have continued my investigation and have found errors in the first edition plus solved some of the mysteries at the time of those writings. stories. But again. Periodically. the history of the Del Grande and Paolini families in America. and of course. has immediate access to the documents in the Family History Center.marriage record of Alfredo and Beatrice. She provided information that filled several gaps in the record. Navy. the discovery of the birth place and parents of Donato(#2) Del Grande. failures and always adding little bits and pieces of information as though we were putting a jigsaw puzzle together. As we both searched census records of descendants. and death.Paolini database that is maintained on the Ancestry. lived in the area of Naples while serving in the U. Pierangela seemed to want to identify Del Grande's and Paolini's back to the beginning of time. They were especially helpful in locating the addresses of the residences in Naples. Apparently I wore out my welcome. Over these past three years as my investigation continued. I upload the essential facts of birth. The facts of this genealogical research are stored in a database management system called RootsMagic that I maintain. Kathryn Lynn Leuke. a second cousin and a descendant of Angiolina Del Grande. I did receive enormous assistance through the local chapter of POINTers (Pursuing Our Italian Names Together) called Il Circolo Filippo Mazzei . I wanted to get what I had on paper. Ti Voglio Bene. and lastly. whose mother was a Paolini from Popoli and whom I met through the Italian Genealogical Group. and also corrected some false conclusions that Pierangela and I had made. and the birth records of their children born in Naples. Ellen Ann O’Connor. a travelogue. She is my mentor and a constant source of inspiration and encouragement. As she pursues her research. So I employed another researcher. a second cousin once removed and his wife Alice Roche. Before the trip to Italy.com website where it can be viewed publically. in addition to doing genealogical research. Since the trip. we are constantly sharing our findings. and in reading replies from inquiries that I had made from Italian agencies. I had used a 14-day trial subscription to Ancestry. 2011 ii . Ugolini.

The Family of Alfredo and Beatrice Paolini Ildebrando Alfredo Paolini Beatrice Maria Del Grande Armando Adolfo (Adolph) Arturo (Arthur Sr. Ottie) iii .) Aldo Amelia (Emily) Attilio (Otto.

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. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4. . . . . . 31 Life for the Paolini in Naples. . . . . . . . . . 1 Ildebrando Alfredo Paolini. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 109 Discovery of Donato Paolini. . . . . . . . . . . 2. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 187 Epilogue. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27 Emigration of the Del Grande. 13. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 83 The Paolini Decide to Emigrate to America. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37 The Del Grande in Utica. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 87 The Emigration of the Paolini. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Return to Italy. . . . . . . 105 Early Years in Chicago. . . . . . . . . . . 8. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 165 Conclusion. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6. . 143 The Family Reunited. . . . . 3. 55 The Del Grande Move to Chicago. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Mary Training School for Boys G: Descendant List of Francesco Paolo Del Grande v . . . . .Table of Contents Introduction 1. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9. . . . . . . . . 153 Five Weddings and Two Funerals. . . . . . . . . 123 The Great War. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . New York. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 199 A: Manifest of the ship SS Moltke B: Italy’s Commissariat of Emigration C: Ethnic Territories of the Near West Side D: Arrigo Park E: Italian Funeral Customs F: St. . . . . . . . . . . . 199 Appendices. . . . . . . . 91 Donato Del Grande . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16. . . . . . 75 Arcangela Del Grande. 17. . . . . . . . . . 11. . . . . . . . . . . . . 15. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 120 Work and Play. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14. . . . . . . .

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But this is my history. They lived in momentous times! Their lives were emblematic of what some consider the largest mass migration of contemporary times. This is the storia of ordinary people seemingly doing ordinary things at the time and from their own point of view. and their life in America. Genealogy is primarily concerned with three basic facts: birth. Isabel Flavia Daniels Paolini. their heirs and beneficiaries. I had heard legends. These were my ancestors. my aunt and uncles. I wanted to know more about the people that I had known in my childhood: my grandmother. I had not the awareness to express my gratitude. movements. I have gathered that data. It is when we. And so I decided to write them in order that they may be preserved. we appreciate their extraordinary accomplishments. As I began to gather the stories and write them. No doubt the basic theme of the struggle of immigrants in America has been told many times by many nationalities. They struggled out of poverty. Therefore this family history covers only three generations: their life in Italy. Over the course of my own life. They integrated themselves into American life and culture. and opinionated descriptions of my relatives. little incidents. would be of noble birth. While much of the factual information comes from archival sources such as birth records. I heard the many stories of my father so often that they became somewhat tiresome. of course. and my father. My purpose was not to trace my pedigree to some distant ancestor who. another purpose evolved: to put their story in the context of time and place. (Those who fail to write about the lives of their ancestors deserve to be forgotten themselves. census data. stories. now I worry that they will never be told again. Since my father's story is part of the family's history. I knew them. and I present the essential in these pages. to a considerable degree. Most historiography is written about great men and women doing extraordinary things. and ship manifests. the accounts of incidents and the description of events stem from two principle sources: my mother. vii . who was thoughtful and kind enough to inquire and listen to her mother-in-law tell her stories over the years. but I wanted to capture the storia of the Paolini and Del Grande families – the Italian language using one word for both concepts.Introduction Quelli che manca di scrivere delle vite di loro antenati merita li è dimenticati.) Genealogy has no beginning point save perhaps Adam and Eve–or Lucy–depending upon your religious beliefs–and the end point is always a moving forward. but who also wrote them in his autobiography. I attempt to describe the historical events. I have included. look over such a life. marriage and death. their passage to America. and because it provides a perspective of the family. and conditions of the period that impacted or at least influenced the decisions and the lives of these people. naturalization petitions. direct quotes from his autobiography. Attilio (Otto) Paolini who told his stories to me since I was a child. Before this writing.

But after hearing of all that you have done in your life. viii . I attempted to interview my grandmother. Paolini is a difficult name to spell correctly. Someone suggested that I change my name.This is my third effort in trying to capture and report the storia of my Italian ancestors. My first attempt was when I was a sophomore at Beloit College when I was given an assignment to interview a person and write their autobiography. I did learn her story from my father and mother. and so I wrote her a card: Dear Grandmother Paolini. and she was too modest to extol her own story. and no one can pronounce it. I hope that this storia explains why. Over the years. I'm very proud to be a Paolini. but I had not the skill to conduct an interview. It was a lost opportunity I sorely regret.

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Dante Alighieri: His Life and Works . As the train rolled eastward. These mountains surrounded the town of Popoli as the walls of her village. She was born and raised in the small town of Popoli in the mountainous region of the Abruzzo. After tens years. she had crossed the Atlantic on the SS Moltke. Beatrice 1 thought a moment. As she sat in the quiet of this solitary space. the author mentions that Beatrice Portinari was called Bice (pronounced Bee’ che). she thought She did not want to see her child with any disfigurement. ‘Beatrice' is not a particularly beautiful name in English. and now she was retired and could afford to take a European vacation. In a work by Paget Toynbee entitled. Let him go to centres of culture and civilization. including a trip to her country of origin and the two towns in which she had lived." or "bee a' tree' che". it began its slow ascent. She had lost a husband and two sons. she married and she and her husband started their own tailoring shop in Naples. "ba-ä-'tre-(. and then declined. A Farewell to Arms Beatrice had returned a few days prior from a visit to her hometown of Popoli. his little body had been embalmed and supposedly preserved. who had died at age six months. and then cutting directly through the mountains in tunnels that seemed to be miles in length. It is the name of the woman idealized by Dante Alighieri in his masterpiece. in her own cabin. No. She had worked as a little girl in her father’s tailor shop cleaning the hems of ladies’ dresses. The Region of Abruzzo "Listen to him talk about the Abruzzi. the Divine Comedy. but in Italian it is pronounced. and my grandmother was called by this nickname as well. and now she lived in the second largest city in America–Chicago. She had been a union organizer and striker in the movement to improve working conditions in the great industrial age while becoming head of the household and chief wage earner for her family of five sons and one daughter. the family had joined one of the greatest flood of emigrants the world has ever seen. She had worked forty-three years in the garment industry. Attilio. first meandering through the valleys. 1 . He doesn't want to see peasants. When he dies. and the great events within her lifetime. In leaving Italy. but when she saw him last–just before departing for America. She asked to remain awhile in the little mausoleum as she wished to be alone with her beloved son.-1Chapter 1 Return to Italy Reflection in Naples The caretaker asked whether or not she wished to see her son. Beatrice had returned to Naples after emigrating from Italy forty-seven years earlier in 1906. She had endured deprivation and hardship through two world wars and the Great Depression." Hemingway. which is a region located midway along the Italian peninsula and adjacent to the Adriatic Sea. There's more snow there than here. she had notice a spot of decay. its great contrasts. it is east of Rome and northeast of Naples (see maps). which I think is quite beautiful. berthed in steerage.)cha. its tragedies. Ernest. and now she had returned on the luxury liner. she reflected on her life: its milestones. the SS Andrea Doria . in the Abruzzo. When only seventeen.

Many.biodiver. the road switched back and forth. Rome. thus allowing the passengers to view the valley below on one side of the coach and then the other. but she knew that they had greatly influenced life in the Abruzzo. online November 30. they viewed the little town that was their destination.se/2007/08/transhumance-in-central-italy/ 2 Avram. 2009. the seasonal movement of livestock. whole villages were destroyed and hundreds of peasants were shot without a trial under the unfounded accusation of protecting the brigands. it was brutally suppressed ending about 1878–a year before Beatrice was born. and then braced itself as it descended into the inter-mountain basin of Sulmona. Luigi. vol. Agricultural Biodiversity Weblog. and many farmers lost their property as they could not pay their taxes.ro/PDF/GTG-2-2009/06_OK_Avram. practiced according to age-old methods. Until the building of the railroad. Ancona and Foggia.pdf. In the end. She wished she could visit every one of them. 2009. The isolation of the Abruzzo was finally broken by the introduction of the railway network which connected Pescara. “The Legacy of Transhumance in National Park of Abruzzo Lazio and Molise (PNALM): Rediscovery and Exploitation.-2They reflected the seasons of the year: green in summer. “Transhumance in central Italy”.webhost. that started in spring from Foggia in the region of Puglia. Obviously unaware of this contortion. The train lumbered through the Apennines mountains. past and present. 2. but even if they had done so. pag. and finally white when laden with snow in winter. then turning bright red and yellow in autumn then brown. almost 185 miles (300km) to the southeast. 3 After the unification of Italy in 1860-1870. August 30. to Naples. http://gtg.uoradea. Much of the poverty of the South of Italy has been attributed to the large landowners who did not introduce modern farming methods. http://agro. The winding descent of the train reminded her of a trip she had taken with her father when she was a child. Viewed by their supporters. The mountains didn’t seem as high as when she was a little girl. Diligenza From time immemorial. 2007. but she was anxious to reach Popoli. With each turn. and Pescara because there were few roads around and out of this mountainous region. the transhumance has been replaced by sedentary forms of sheep-breeding integrated with agriculture. along with former soldiers of the army of Garibaldi (Red Shirts) and the army of the Bourbons. since World War II.2 Now. 4. mainly sheep. Abruzzo was the summer feeding grounds for the great transhumance. They were viewed by their countrymen as provincials. the economy of the region had been based on sheep farming and agriculture. Year II. The mountains were dotted with little villages that made the scenery so picturesque. Reprisals were cruel and bloody on both sides and often the poor were caught in the middle of fights. Maria. 153-159.” GeoJournal of Tourism and Geosites . a woman passenger remarked: "My! There are so many towns on this road!" Beatrice and her father just smiled at each other. turned to brigandage. 3 . there was a great expectation of agrarian reform but because of collusion between the large landowners of the south and the industrialists of the north. and later in the Sangro area. They lagged in economic development and awareness of the changing social and political ideas. their activity was not just thievery but an insurrection. they had been a barrier to travel and to commerce such that the Abruzzese were isolated. Traveling by the diligenza or stagecoach. it would have been impossible to transport their produce to the markets of Naples. no. the reform never took place.

-3- Italy and the region of Abruzzo Maps of Italy. Abruzzo. and Popoli Abruzzo region Map of Popoli .

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inabruzzo.it/fotoabruzzo Popoli in the morning .-5Popoli Popoli by the Pescara River Popoli in the Mountains Photos courtesy of Giovanni Lattanzi at www.

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A smile came to her lips as she recalled an old man warning her: "Don't ever go on that machine–that's the work of the Devil. including the Equi. January 2010. under whose rule the region was divided into sub-regions of Molise. leading to demands for liberal reforms which would undermine the monarchical power of the papacy over in the Papal States (central Italy). Beatrice could see in the distance. which became part of the Kingdom of Sicily and then under Frederick II of Hohenstaufen which had the neighboring city of Sulmona as the regional capital. When a little girl. 5 4 Di Gregorio.-7In ancient times Abruzzo was inhabited by several peoples. the Spanish Hapsburgs (Charles VIII). Pescara. and in 1860 the region became part of the united Kingdom of Italy. the Aragonese (Alfonso V of Aragon). In 1953 there were five provinces comprising the region: L'Aquila. A more cynical explanation is that the pope opposed basic technological innovations because he believed that they would promote commerce and increase the power of the bourgeoisie.89. 4 Abruzzo Ulteriore I. the latter being split-off to from the region of Molise in 1963. Abruzzo Ulteriore II. Vestini and Praetutii. she arrived at the train station.wikipedia. the regions of Abruzzo and Molise in turn came under the control of the Anjou (Charles of Anjou). Marsi. Abruzzo . Bucks. and allowed the introduction of railways--and even gas lighting–in 1860. and finally.fotomulazzani. In the 12th century the Normans conquered the territory. The Town of Popoli After passing through the city of Sulmona. Chieti and Campobasso. chemin d'enfer" ("the iron road. After the fall of the Hohenstaufen dynasty in the 13th century. the Abruzzo was under the control of the Lombard duchy of Spoleto. After the decline of the Roman Empire. originally built in 1016. she was at this very station when the first train came to Popoli in the late 1800s. and it had forbidden its followers to use the railways as it was believed to promote public indecency. who were conquered by the Romans before the third century BCE. Teramo. the region broke up into small feudal states. In a few minutes. on Monte Rotondo 5 . and during the early Middle Ages. the ruins of the Castello di Popoli (see photograph). the Bourbon Kingdom of Naples (17351796).org/wiki/Pope_Gregory_XVI 7 6 http://en.7 Pope Pius IX (1792-1878) was more sympathetic to modern times. especially after independence and unification. http://en." The Catholic Church also Photo courtesy of Paolo Mulazzani at www.wikipedia.com did not have a favorable opinion of this newfangled contraption. p. Bradt Travel Guides Ltd.org/wiki/Rail_transport_in_Vatican_City#cite_note-3 . and was reputed to have said "chemin de fer. the road to hell"). often referenced in the plural: Abruzzi. Luciano. and is. in the 18th century. Abruzzo Citra–hence it was.6 Pope Gregory XVI (1831–1846) prevented the construction of railways in the Papal States. By the early 19th century small liberal groups were taking part in revolutionary activities. England.

9 She entered the town from the west.8 She crossed over the confluence of the rivers Aterno and Pescara on the bridge called the Ponte Risorgimento . Marquis Gino Capponi (1792-1876) was an Italian statesman and historian. she knew that it was doubtful that her husband was a relation to so prominent of person.beniculturali. She resumed her travel on Via Capponi . during World War I. crystal-clear lake. forcing him to move to France. General Orders No. He was persecuted by the regime and threatened many times to death. he was arrested and shot by the Germans in 1944. General Orders: War Department. surrounded by woods and reedbeds. for exceptionally meritorious and distinguished service in a position of great responsibility to the Government of the United States. 3d Italian Army. and stopped to rest in the Piazza Giuseppe Paolini (see photograph). on the run. While Commanding the 11th Army Corps.10 She noted that there was a whole new section of the town to the south. a public square dedicated to an infantry commander of the Italian Army and recognized for his actions during the Great War. July 9.php?en/92/the-collection 10 11 . He returned to Italy and was active in the Resistance. but she proceeded directly to the old section and the main square: the Piazza della Libertà11 (see photograph). In addition to recognition by his countrymen. Paolini. 9 8 The area is now the Pescara Springs Nature Reserve. General Paolini rendered services of inestimable value to the American Expeditionary Forces and to the cause in which the United States has been engaged. The rivers ran as clear now as they did when she lived here as there are numerous springs that form a small. authorized by Act of Congress. 1918. Italian Army. Piazza Paolini and the Monument to the Fallen circa 1950 Courtesy of Norma Milas A trade unionist and Italian politician who openly defied fascism by leading strikes in 1925. takes pleasure in presenting the Army Distinguished Service Medal to Lieutenant General Giuseppe Paolini.tavernaducalepopoli.it/index. 45 (1919) While she now bore the same name. http://www. he was recognized by the United States: Army Distinguished Service Medal Awarded for actions during the World War I The President of the United States of America.-8Beatrice exited the station and walked along the street that had since been renamed Viale Bruno Buozzi .

org/licenses/by-sa/3.org/w iki/File:Popoli_36.it/ .w ikim edia.viaggioinabruzzo.viaggioinabruzzo.-9Popoli Sorgenti_del_Pescara Courtesy of Viaggio in Abruzzo http://www.viaggioinabruzzo.0/de/legalcode Piazza della Libertà Courtesy of Viaggio in Abruzzo http://www.it/ Monument to the Fallen with a statue to Liberty Courtesy of RABoe/Wikipedia.it/ Piazza Duchi Cantelmo Courtesy of Viaggio in Abruzzo http://www. photo found at http://com m ons.jpg License requirem ents at http://creativecom m ons.

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flickr.com/photos/vulkan/136390017/in/photostream/ Campanile di Santissima Trinità Santi Lorenzo e Biagio Piazza San Lorenzo .-11Popoli Via Cavour Scalinata Trinità dei Monti e Santissima Trinità Courtesy of Antonio Di Bacco http://www.

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org/wiki/Queen_Margherita Camillo Paolo Filippo Giulio Benso.it/ could see them. was the Queen consort of the Kingdom of Italy during the reign (1878-1900) of her husband. she hobbled and stumbled out of the church. One day she and her sister Gilda entered the bell tower and rang the bells. She walked up Via Cavour 13 and past the Piazza Duchi Cantelmo to the Scalinata Trinità dei Monti (the Flight of steps of the trinity of mountains) to view once again the churches Santissima Trinità and the adjacent Santi Lorenzo e Biagio (see photographs).” Without hesitation. 13 12 . The old woman became hysterical. and not having to spell it two or three times. L’ho!” It was such a pleasure to be able to say her name only once to have it understood. but it probably appeared much the same to her then as it did when she was a little girl. As she reached the top. Unfortunately. Ho una prenotazione. Though she traveled lightly. signora Paolini. When an old and crippled woman. having maintained its original 15th century character with its apartment buildings. When the townspeople came to the church to determine who had rung the bells. Beatrice and Gilda whispered from behind the statue in order to sound as though the Virgin was speaking. She quickly freshened herself and then resumed her tour of the town. Umberto I. walking with the aid of a cane. She found the hotel and approached the front desk: “Mi chiamo Beatrice Paolini. and the church of San Francesco all surrounding the paved square with a fountain in the middle. She gazed up at the campanile of Santissima Trinità to read the date: 1648. “Ah sì. they found no one.-13It might have been called Piazza Margherita12 when she lived in Popoli. sì. she was quite popular among the Italian people. the poor women died. memories flooded her mind. a miracle!" Via Cavour and the Scalinata Trinità dei Monti Beatrice and Gilda performed another miracle when they went into the church and hid behind the statue of the Virgin Mary. The flight of stairs seemed higher and longer now than when she scampered up and down them as a young girl. came to pray to the Virgin.viaggioinabruzzo. Courtesy of Viaggio in Abruzzo They secreted themselves so that no one http://www. and even though she was not able to walk. a week later. http://en.wikipedia. Beatrice thought sadly. but with a touch of whimsy: "We killed that lady!" Margherita of Savoy (Margherita Maria Teresa Giovanna (1851– 1926)). and then declared: "A miracle. The old woman and townspeople again declared a miracle had occurred. palazzi . her arm was beginning to ache from carrying her suitcase. the desk clerk replied. Count of Cavour (1810–1861) was a leading figure in the movement toward Italian unification.

30 Via Attoia. No. It is surprising how many times the Del Grande family moved in the course of twentyfive years. 10 Born in the United States Born in the United States None of the names of the streets now exist (year 2010). Only one old man thought that he remembered them. L’Aquila. One legend is that the Del Grande were French aristocracy and had to flee the country during the French Revolution (1789–1799). No.16 southeast of Popoli and www. With the exception of Vico Venti Aurelio Saffi. No. Records that were created based upon declarations by Beatrice have the year of 1880. but her birth record ( Atto di Nascita ) is in the year 1879. and asked several people that she met whether or not they remembered the Del Grande family. 30 Via Offia.” . 18091910 by genealogist Pierangela Badia who lives in the capital of the region. or De Grandis as the surname is listed in several birth records. but the family name may go back even farther.flickr. The dates and addresses of the births in Italy were taken from the Registri dello Stato Civile. 5 Via San Lorenzo 20 Via San Lorenzo 45 Via di Sopra 45 Vico Venti Aurelio Saffi. were residing in Italy as early as 1735–well before the French Revolution.com/photos/vulkan/2179889009/ Sulmona. but a descendant of the family was dissolute and dissipated the family fortune. Family Legends Scalinata Trinità dei Monti The ancestors of the Del Grande family resided Courtesy of Antonio Di Bacco in the hill town of Pacentro. They were easily remembered by the births of the Del Grande children. and they may have been changed even before Beatrice returned in 1953. Beatrice searched for familiar faces. As described.-14Beatrice visited the many houses 14 in which her family–the Del Grande–had resided. 16 15 14 The ancestral home of Madonna Ciccone–better know as “Madonna. n. the legend is obviously false as the Del Grande. all the addresses were probably around the Piazza San Lorenzo (see map and photograph) of today. including her own: Name Maria Beatrice Maria Gilda Maria Angiolina Maria Nazzarena Inez Guistina Ungaro Tarquinio Maria Ines Carlo Alberto Italia Italia Arminda (Lillian) Donato Date of Birth 2 May 187915 30 Jan 1882 8 Feb 1884 6 Mar 1886 29 Jun 1887 31 Ju1 1889 14 Dec 1891 23 Dec 1893 24 Apr 1896 27 Feb 1899 26 Jan 1904 Date of Death 6 Jan 1969 26 Aug 1944| 5 Jan 1968 8 Dec 1887 7 Feb 1889 3 Nov 1943 May 1971 4 Jul 1973 20 Jul 1887 16 Apr 1987 6 Jan 1909 Address where born Via Offia. No Del Grande reside in the town now.

genealogical researcher in L'Aquila. and death records of the Del Grande and Paolini families in Popoli stated “there is no Del Grande any more. E-mail correspondence with Pierangela Badia. gained control of most of Italy in the 16 th century. at the year of his death. February 23. 2007. How and why he and/or his descendants settled in a poor and isolated town in the Abruzzo is a mystery. It is possible that a Del Grande came for such a position or as a retainer to someone. Donato married Angela Moscia in 1849 and they had seven children 20 : Name Marianna Maria Raffaela Anna Francesco Paolo Lucia Maria Grazia Angiolo Date of Birth 18 Jan 1851 5 Jul 1852 26 Feb 1854 11 Mar 1856 26 Dec 1857 30 Nov 1859 13 Apr 1862 The genealogist that was retained to provide extracts of the birth. so the De Grandis were in Pacentro at an even earlier date. 17 This legend was told by Carol Jean Paolini [Tallon] in a private conversation with the author.18 Vincenzo. such as the famous Pedro Álvarez de Toledo who was appointed Viceroy of Naples. 21 20 19 18 E-mail from Pierangela Badia. and he married Maria Carmina D’Inocenzzo in 1823. June 20. 1823 10 July – marriage act of Raffaele de Grandis yo 43 born in Pacentro son of late Vincenzo and late Francesca Paola Iezzi with Carmina D'Innocenzo born in Popoli of Silvestro and Gioconda Castricone. June 20. there were other Del Grande from Popoli that immigrated to America. The earliest record of the De Grandis is an atto di matrimonio for the son of Vincenzo De Grandis. 2007: 15. 19 He had a father named Paolo. they had at least two children: Donato and Arcangela. 1804 18 December – death-extract of Vincenzo de Grandis of late Paolo. 2007. Italy. June 20. Italy. genealogical researcher in L’Aquila. husband of Francesca Paola Iezzi. Abruzzo. genealogical researcher in L’Aquila. marriage. and thus he was born about 1735. . Abruzzo. E-mail correspondence with Pierangela Badia.” E-mail correspondence with Pierangela Badia. The son of Vincenzo De Grandis was Raffaele. as further research has shown and will be described later in chapter 10. Italy. age 69 birth about 1735 (attached in 1823 marriage acts).17 Charles V. and brought Spaniards to be administrators of territories and cities. 2007: “12.-15Another legend is that they came from Spain. was sixty-nine in 1804.” 21 However. Abruzzo. Holy Roman Emperor and King of Spain.

but I remember that my father referred to him as Don Francesco. Pino. especially on a hot day. John Davidson." probably a nickname in informal settings among close friends. bore eleven children.” Thus. Rudolph M. and Italia.com/secondary/geography/geoactive/series14/ga276. 1980. 26 In the course of my genealogical research. in 1950. Bell. Family and Village: Demographic and Cultural Change in Rural Italy Since 1800 . the pabulum would be even more difficult to digest and be more susceptible to bacterial growth. She looked briefly for the graves but decided that their graves had been removed and the site reused.pdf Arlacchi. it states that she "had three brothers and eight sisters. Gemma Castricone. 24 There were several causes of infant mortality.000 born had died before they were a year old. Ines Guistina. She still felt the loss as she had played and cared for them all. there would be a total of twelve children. the primary being intestinal infections. Mafia. said that he was called "Chico Paolo.000 meaning that 151 babies out of 1. about the time of Beatrice’s visit. select nobles. In 1911 it was 151/1. such as a community leader of long standing or a person of significant wealth. Land for cemeteries in Italy is limited. The Demographic Transition Model: Italy and Kenya Compared. This title was probably used in formal settings and before small children upon whom their parents wished to instill a sense of respect for elders. he is listed as "Franc. 26 25 24 23 22 . University of Chicago Press. I discovered several names for my great grandfather.000. and Great Estates: Society in Traditional Calabria . Of course his birth name was Francesco Paolo Del Grande. especially during the summer. Her mother. especially those living in rural areas. the figure had greatly decreased though still relatively high: 70/1. Press Syndicate of the University of Cambridge.25 Infants were sometimes fed a formula of pabulum consisting of animal’s milk mixed with grain.. but respectfully addressed as ‘Don Francesco. 23 Three of them died before the age of two: Maria Nazzarena.-16Beatrice's father was Francesco Paolo Del Grande. The mixture should have been cooked until thickened in order to soften the grain and kill bacteria. diarrhea. These high rates encouraged people to have several children. possibly originating in Spain but adopted by other Latin countries. Robert Sirimarco. either to conserve fuel and/or to not bother to make a fire. The eleven listed are confirmed by birth records. and church hierarchs. there was an increased likelihood of gastroenteritis. http://www. p. Fate and Honor. Peasants. Infant mortality was very high in Italy before the late 1900s. GeoActive Online.' 22 The title "Don" (and Donna for women) is an honorific originally reserved for royalty. social or official distinction.nelsonthornes. Infant Mortality Beatrice came to the cemetery. Series 14 Autumn issue Unit 276 The Demographic Transition Model: Italy and Kenya Compared © 2002 Nelson Thornes. On the manifest of his first voyage to America. and if it were given repeatedly during a period of fourteen hours or more. 182. including Lily." His grandson. Were it not baked. his name is written as "Frank Del Grande. 40. and grave sites are reused. p. or constipation. Chicago and London. In the biography of Lily. It was/is often used as a mark of esteem for a person of personal. Del Grande" and on census sheet and on his tomb. 1979.

and tying the baby with bands of cloth.000 to less than 100 per 1. the standard treatment of providing the infant with no food until it recovered served to weaken further its resistance to a variety of infectious diseases. development of vaccination programs. she was often entrusted with the care of her younger siblings. U. 41 .26 for the United States). widespread pasturization of milk (which alone may have cut infant mortality from 150 per 1.-17Several studies found that the contamination of milk led to several medical complications: Even sterile milk contains saprophytic bacteria. https://www. or. p.” 28 Italy now has one of the lowest infant mortality rates in the world: 5.html 29 . She rushed to the shed and found him completely covered with hay. cholera. 27 Ibid. Fearing that he was dead. bacterial meningitis. Incompetent or inattentive care might include improper or inadequate feeding. to bring in the harvest. Infant mortality rates as of February 19. 27 In addition to contaminated food. Central Intelligence Agency.S. and she put Ungaro in a manger–“just like the baby Jesus. either too tightly thereby cutting off circulation. 28 The World Fact Book . p. who was a baby at the time. and better nutrition due both to agricultural production increases and reduced population pressure resulting from emigration. and somewhat surprisingly.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/fields/2091. or too loosely so that the baby may have pried the band to its neck and then choked. 2010.51 (compared 6. Mothers sometimes had to leave the care of an infant and younger children to that of an older child for a short time to either shop or tend the garden.” she said--and then went out to play. in which case. and if milk is left standing in warm weather. she spent the entire day playing. Italians are now having small families. 29 As a consequence. there were infectious diseases: malaria. One group of these bacteria causes the souring of milk.cia. she may be absent the entire day. counts rise very rapidly to more than one million per milliliter. and typhoid. Even when death did not follow. smallpox. such as not washing hands with soap and water. which is harmless. in the case of a farmer’s wife. There was a shed for animals nearby.000). Forgetting all about him.56. rising concern with public health. One day she was given the care of Ungaro. A case of poor care by a mother substitute was told innocently by Beatrice herself. Lastly. she frantically brushed away the hay only to find him well and happy. but other strains evoke vomiting and diarrhea. As the oldest. and did not remember her charge until it was time to return home. Improvements in various aspects of infant health and care have greatly reduced infant mortality in Italy and the world: “advances in medical knowledge of disease transmission.. poor care by mother substitutes was found to be a factor in contributing to infant mortality. Ibid. She carefully brushed off all the hay and solemnly returned him to her mother. failure to maintain sanitary conditions.

-18Beatrice thought about her own close call as a bambina .31 It was built to collect the decima . Racing back. this theory is not widely accepted because the pioppo plant grows all over Italy. Popoli the Name The use of oxen.wikipedia.” http://abruzzotoday. Someone awoke and noticed that the pillow and Beatrice were gone. As a settlement. but the etymology of the name is uncertain. 7.88.com/towns/towns-and-villages-in-abruzzo/popoli. Lying along the main transportation routes from the Adriatic coasts to Naples. mules and donkeys were still in evidence as Beatrice proceeded on her tour of Popoli. http://www. the town has always had strategic importance. Wikipedia. everyone dozed off. making it an inadequate reason to name a town. the town was often called Puòpere . the so-called Via degli Abruzzi . It was a prosperous town during the Middle Ages. No. Year II.” Article entitled. though its current layout dates from the 13 th century. Another theory is based on the ancient name of Castrum pauperum . It is one of the most historical medieval buildings in Abruzzo with its remarkable facade full of emblems and decorations.30 Count of Popoli. However. With the exception of the driver. with a thriving wool industry and basking in the patronage of the wealthy families of the Kingdom of Naples. all were laying on the straw of the wagon with baby Beatrice asleep on a white pillow. which the vassals (subjects) had to give to their suzerain. May 2001. It's name has been said to derive from the Latin word "populus" for the pioppo plant that grows in abundance around the area. also known as the Taverna Vecchia (see photograph). recorded in the Chronicon Casauriense a document that links the name to the meaning of "poor"–an impoverished or persecuted population.” Journal of the Abruzzo World Club . Later the building became a taverna and then a hotel. An awakened Don Francesco looked back down the road and saw a small white spot in the distance. p. It was originally built by Giovanni Cantelmo. She came to the Taverna Ducale . “Abruzzo Today: The Abruzzo Travel Information.org/wiki/Duchy_of_Sora 32 31 Di Gregorio. In the local vernacular. using the rooms on the upper floor as guest rooms. a tithe or the tenth part of a property’s value.abruzzoheritage. Luciano.32 The name Popoli can be simply translated as ‘peoples'. built in the 14th century. Duchy of Sora. the town has pre-Roman origins.com/magazine/2001_05/0105_b. Lulled by the plodding pace of the ox and the swaying motion of the cart. Abruzzo .html 33 . he found her still asleep on her pillow.htm 30 “His remaining lands in Alvito and Popoli were assigned to his brother Giovanni Cantelmo with the title of Count. http://en. The family was returning home late one night with a group of friends.33 “History of a family: the Cantelmos.

photo found at http://commons.jpg License requirements at http://creativecommons.0/de/legalcode .org/wiki/File:Popoli_18.-19Popoli Piazza della Libertà Taverna Ducale Courtesy of Viaggio in Abruzzo http://www.org/licenses/by-sa/3.it/ Reliefs of the Taverna Ducale San Domenico (now the city hall) Salita Nicola Costantini Taverna Ducale and Salita Courtesy of RABoe/Wikipedia.viaggioinabruzzo.wikimedia.

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His efforts helped bring about the modern Italian state in place of the several separate states. one that would steel her for the future. It must have been a laborious task for a little girl. 1944 at noon. many dominated by foreign powers. Nothing is known about her early adolescence but it is likely that she worked as a cucitrice or seamstress. was probably a ‘merchant tailor. He is renowned for his concept of cultural hegemony as a means of maintaining the state in a capitalist society. In the 1960's. and 7) the giornalieri or day workers. the title of the profession of tailoring performed by women as noted in the register of births. the complex was used as a barracks for the Carabinieri . If the latter. because in lay on the road that connected Rome with the city of Pescara on the Adriatic coast. 3) the bourgeoisie or middle-class and the nouveau riche . In 1975. one who made and sold clothes in his shop. Clearly the Del Grande family were members of the petit-bourgeoisie or. in Italian. Unfortunately. He also helped define the modern European movement for popular democracy in a republican state. Don Francesco. The class structure of Italy in the 1800's can be categorized as follows: 1) the nobility. and the complex was transferred to the comune and made the municipio (city hall).-21Beatrice retraced her steps and returned to the Piazza San Lorenzo and then south along the street named Giordano Bruno34 until she arrived at the monastery of San Domenico 35 (see photograph). He is notable as a highly original thinker within the Marxist tradition. it was a day that rations were being distributed to populace at the city hall. he was imprisoned by Benito Mussolini's Fascist regime. Antonio Gramsci (1891-1937) was an Italian philosopher. was an Italian patriot. piccola borghesia . Since women wore long dresses in those days. She had heard that Popoli was bombarded twice during World War II by the British Air Force. many of whom were killed or wounded. It is not know whether the shop was on the first floor of his house with living quarters on the second–a casa bottega –or he had a separate shop in the business section. their hems dragged along the ground. the majority of whom worked on farms of the large landowners or for the nouveau riche who had leased farms. marriages and deaths of the town–the Registri dell stato civile . 34 He was burned at the stake by authorities in 1600 after the Roman Inquisition found him guilty of heresy. writer. Class Structure in Italy Beatrice’s father.’ that is.37 or perhaps a little side street (a vicolo ) between these two parallel streets. including the clergy. the bridge over the Aterno River was destroyed. The day is still remembered with sorrow by the Popolese. 2) the large landholders (also labeled the aristocracy when including the nobility). 5) petit-bourgeoisie composed of artisans and small shopkeepers. philosopher and politician. and there were long lines of women and children. On the 20th of January. Then on March 22. 37 36 35 . Even as a little girl. that existed until the 19th century. barracks were built at a new location. then it was probably located somewhere along Corso Antonio Gramsci36 or Via Giuseppe Mazzini . 6) the contandini or small farmers. the city center and city hall were destroyed by substantial bombing by the British. His writings mostly deal with the analysis of culture and political leadership. Beatrice worked in the shop as she was first given the task of cleaning the hems of ladies' skirts. called the "Julius Caesar" bridge. A founding member and onetime leader of the Communist Party of Italy. 1944. She rested in the tranquil green that is enclosed by the surrounding buildings. politician and political theorist. 4) the professionals. It was the most important bridge in the region. Giuseppe Mazzini (1805–1872).

they offer explanation for events that are mysterious. When the man answered the door.org/wiki/Education_in_Italy . When Beatrice was a little girl.pdf 39 38 “Education in Italy”. Education Beatrice was the beneficiary of progressive legislation enacted even before the Risorgemento . European Commission. The Miracle Workers Beatrice still had time to play with her best friend: her sister Gilda. A man who could not speak was first to be brought forward to the healer. Gilda loved to eat. Beatrice wormed her way through the crowd to the front in order see what was really happening. http://eacea. especially in rural farm areas. “In 1859. Beatrice did reveal one truth to the world–or at least to her mother.-22Beatrice probably helped her mother in the garden as well. a miracle–he can speak. Miracles offer hope. Beatrice and Gilda went down to the corner house.” 38 It made primary education compulsory. The voice of a disbeliever had been silenced. My dear mother just passed away. "Oh Nonna . Perhaps the belief in miracles stems for the need for help of a people who have little control of their lives. the Casati Law laid down the provisions for the organization of state education. he said. To doubt these miracles is to negate a structural element of the society.ec. They didn’t just provide miracles to Popoli. secondary education to the provinces (counties). p. and the crowd shouted. They did this a second and a third time with the same results. A man came to the door and looked out.39 The law specified only two years of compulsory education because lawmakers believed that parents. Beatrice accompanied her father to the corner house as he was making a garment for a lady in the family." Whap! Her grandmother had given her a sharp slap across her mouth. Mr. that is. and she would climb on a chair and help herself to the dried sausages.eu/eurydice/ressources/eurydice/eurybase/pdf/section/IT_EN_C2_1. he withdrew and closed the door. and we knew it was a messenger of death. there were three knocks on the door. the universities. Her mother knew that Beatrice had a very small appetite.wikipedia. Of course. we have a tragedy in the family. he didn't speak. the Lord warned us–just a few days ago. knocked on the door. but Beatrice wanted to prove that Gilda was guilty. And so it is necessary to believe even when the evidence would normally cause doubt or denial. "A miracle. and Gilda was always eating. The man mumbled a bit. http://en. would not have cooperated and The Education System in Italy 2007/08 . A few days later. then ran and hid. The next time Gilda climbed on a chair and held onto the rafters to take some delicacy. 1. to the central government. 2008. but portents as well. but seeing no one. It’s quite likely that the Del Grande had a little field or market garden outside the town so as to supplement the food that they had to purchase in town. and they provide a feeling of closeness with God." No one seems to doubt the existence of miracles–or at least there is no voice of denial. Often these gardens were not owned individually but held ‘in common’ by the comune di Popoli . Gilda was caught in the act. Playing outside one day. This law gave responsibility for primary education to the single towns. meats and cheeses that were hung from the rafters of their home. Eurybase: The Information Database on Education Systems in Europe. "Oh. Gilda denied culpability and said that Beatrice had taken the food. When her mother Gemma saw that someone had been taking food and accused Gilda. leaving Gilda hanging from the rafters so that when Gemma returned. so she really knew the truth.europa. he just went bluh bluh bluh." Beatrice returned to her grandmother and said. her grandmother brought her to a religious shrine at which miracles were being performed. Beatrice pulled the chair away. and higher education. having the goal of reducing illiteracy. Del Grande.

-23that there was an insufficient number of schools and teachers to meet a larger school population.p. Consequently. a relatively progressive policy in a rural and isolated region. Cowen. most people identified only with their village or town. The rate of children enrolled in primary education would reach 90% only after 70 years and the illiteracy rate. The liberal leaders of the new Italian state wanted educational institutions to educate the populace not only to provide more skilled workers. and the comune di Popoli provided the school and teachers. The University of Michigan Press. to teach. not the new notion of ‘Italy. she had to return to Naples to relive the next chapter in her life. In addition. the Coppino law made education free and compulsory for children between the ages of six and nine. which was near 80% in 1861. p. It is unlikely that Beatrice was aware of the political concerns and conflicts of policy regarding the education of Italians during this period. the Catholic Church demurred at the spread of lay education as a possible threat to the faith. 1959. 43 Beatrice achieved a small degree of education because her father and mother encouraged her and allowed her to attend school. but to engender feelings of nationalism and patriotism. Italy: A Modern History . Part 1 . and opposed to the whole notion of liberalism and its concomitant.42 Correspondingly. Beatrice attended school until she reached the age of nine and completed the fifth grade. Denis Mack. were denied an education.40 In 1876. the country lost the use of its existing school system. Still smarting from the loss of its territory.201.’ As stated by the Italian statesman [Massimo Taparelli. though certainly limited. p. 41 42 43 “Education in Italy”. Italy was a new nation if not a new country. 40 Smith. many children in the south. Smith. the Italian government enacted policies designed to reduce the influence of the Catholic Church and made it illegal for any prelate. Now we must make Italians. took more than 50 years to halve. Return to Naples Beatrice must have concluded her sojourn with a sad smile: so many wonderful memories in this little town. for which the Church and its clergy were the only source of schooling. The law was quite successful in promoting the education of the middle class 41 but seems to have failed in the rural and southern areas as children often were not sent to school. Cowen. Robert. This so-called elementary education included reading the works of Dante Alighieri as required by law. p . marquis] d'Azeglio (1798–1866) after Unification: "We have made Italy.55.” Therefore the Coppino Law included a provision entitled First Notions on the Duties of Men and Citizens 44 that defined the content of education. Now it was time to move on. International handbook of comparative education. the liberty of the individual. Ann Arbor. 44 . especially as the Coppino Law abolished compulsory religious teaching in elementary schools.114.201. or religious person of any sort.

there are separate records of: • Birth (atto di nascita ) • Marriage (atto di matrimonio ). Napoleon’s purpose was not to bring progressive government to the people of Italy as an end in itself. which by tradition included the region of Abruzzo. I even found notations of the marriage of a man and a woman in the margin of their birth records. 1999. but to enable him to draft Italian men for his army and to increase public revenue by making tax collection more Research Outline: Italy . vital records were maintained by the Church. p. 46 45 Ibid. Family History Library. even when they married in another city.17. pubblicazioni. I came to appreciate this record-keeping system in a country not known for its efficiency. Apparently this record-keeping system was quite uniform throughout Italy. The photocopies of the register for Popoli were taken in the early 1980s. or banns [ notificazioni. there were no records of divorce. Most relevant for genealogical purposes. In some instances. • Death (atto di morte ) Since divorce was illegal in Italy prior to 1970. and the birth and death records of their parents. As I perused the records of the Registri dello stato civile. and sometimes even in another country. 1809-1910 for the comune di Popoli. Salt Lake City. These documents were often filed by the bride and groom in support of their intent or “solemn promise” to marry. Napoleon abolished the feudalistic fiefdoms and created two kingdoms: the Kingdom of Italy in the north with himself as king. though certainly with exceptions. prior to that time. . The couple may have been required to announce their intended marriage to give members of the community an opportunity to raise any objections to the marriage. Utah.-24***** Records in Italy As mentioned in the introduction.45 • Supporting documents [ processetti or allegati]. memorandum ]: These notifications were made a few weeks before a couple planned to marry. he introduced civil record-keeping. Napoleon introduced centralized fiscal and administrative systems that brought Italy into the 19 th century. allegations. the records that I examined were photocopied and put on microfilm by the Mormon church. and I discovered that it originated with the conquest of Italy by Napoleon Bonaparte in 1796-1799. The marriage to Ildebrando Paolini is record on the birth record of Beatrice (see photo image).46 Often these were copies of the birth records of the bride and groom. • Proclamation. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. By year. and the Kingdom of Naples in the south.

Birth Record of Maria Beatrice Del Grande (page 1 of 2) Registri dell stato civile 1809-1910 ***** Davis. These two goals–those of all empires–were to support his wars of conquest and aggrandizement. For Popoli. Italian civil registration resumed throughout the country when Italy became a unified country.-25effective and efficient. John A. starting in 1860. ed. the towns and provinces continued to keep civil registration records: Regno di Napoli (comprising most of southern Italy from Napoli and Campania down to Calabria and Puglia). Thus the registri for Popoli has records dating from 1809. but in southern Italy. Oxford University Press. The Short Oxford History of Italy. many areas discontinued civil registration. and the Abruzzo region.47 After Napoleon's defeat in 1815. p. and a copy sent to.35. Italy in the Nineteenth Century 1796-1900 . 47 . and filed by the provincial capital. the regional capital was L’Aquila.. Toscana.. 2000. but then changed to the newly created province of Pescara in 1927. Two sets of records were maintained: the original by the town.

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alone. His atto di nascita (record of birth) reveals his true origin: . This could mean that they didn't marry in church at all. 2007. and gave to the baby the name of Ildebrando and the surname Alighieri 51"-. I checked marriages from 1896 to 1898 but found no church marriage record for Ildebrando. After examining the baby. genealogical researcher in L'Aquila. we acknowledged he was alive. This version of his background was related by Beatrice and by her son. Dante Alighieri. His birth record and all subsequent records found in Italy refer to him as Ildebrando. Perhaps he worked as a tailor in Don Francesco’s shop. or that they didn't marry in a church in Naples. at nine hours.act no. born in Popoli. So we delivered the baby to the Commissioner of Foundlings. my father. approximately 2 days old. appeared Camillo di Felice of late Antonio. 51 E-mail from Pierangela Badia. It was family legend that Alfredo49 was born in the Piedmont–the northeast portion of Italy. 2007 2:42 pm. sent February 23. with no special marks on himself. and he frequented their home. Naples: Ildebrando Paolini age 30. It is not known whether or not the marriage was arranged.-27Chapter 2 Ildebrando Alfredo Paolini Ildebrando Alfredo Paolini was a close friend of the Del Grande family. 52 .Complete transcription: "before us Mancini Ciro mayor. Following the custom of the time. Whether or not they were aware of his actual origin is not known. 2. 50 49 48 The street name no longer exists but it was probably near the church of the same name. 46 . he found in the street called Madonna delle Grazie50 an infant enveloped in white cotton bands. 44. 1897. Ildebrando Alfredo probably brought little to the table and certainly no family legacy. While some have thought Alfredo to be his middle name. it is more likely that he adopted it and thus it is a nickname. and that he was a soldier in the Italian Army.to the left side [in the margin] is the registration of marriage: on 1 may 1897 in Napoli he married Del Grande Maria Beatrice act n. they were married in Naples. Beatrice said that she sat on his lap as a child as he was eleven years her senior. Italy. March 15. S. born in Popoli. resident in Naples on Vico Francesco Del Giudice. was the first daughter of the family to marry. as the oldest. 1867 21 december . E-mail from genealogical researcher Joe de Simone in Quadrelle. daughter of Francesco Paolo Del Grande and of Gemma Castricone. On May 1. Italy.transcription tribunal of Sulmona 6 Sept 1898 52 -MR #46 dated 24 MAY 1897. son of unknown father and of Angiola Paolini. farmer domiciled in Popoli who declared that on 21 december year 1867.Copy of birth declaration of Alighieri Ildebrando. MARRIES Maria Beatrice Del Grande age 18. 48 She was seventeen years of age and he was twenty-nine. but more probably it was encouraged by her parents though not for the purpose of advancing the family fortune or social prestige. Alighieri is the surname of the famous Italian poet. Attached was a photographic image in . I also conducted a search of the church marriage records at the Archdiocese of Naples. that he shows us. 250 . male. Attilio (Otto) Paolini.Lorenzo District. Beatrice.jpg format of the atto di nascita . Abruzzo.

who later became Pope Gregory VII. Since Beatrice married Alfredo Paolini. A footnote states: “Hildebrand. and registered in the register of births in the serial number 250. Verified in this day 2nd of September 1884 55 53 A notation of the marriage was recorded the Registri dello stato civile on the birth record of Beatrice Del Grande in both Sulmona. having declared does not know how to write. will assume the name of the Paolini's family. Copy of acts sent by Dott. and Francesco Rico. son of Francesco. eligible under the law. was given the baby by the mother so as to avoid the stigma of an unmarried mother and/or to have him placed in an orphanage because she could not care for the him. by me notary personally known. and in Popoli. 2 (witness). Nicola Rico. shoemaker. no such record was found by the parish priest. son of the late Antonio from Popoli. so she kept him always with her and took care and felt responsible of his education. Two inquiries were made of the parish of San Lorenzo Martire in Popoli as to the existence of a marriage in the church. The same Paolini stated that really the afore-said Ildebrando Alighieri was born from herself.. appeared before me Angiola Paolini. by me notary personally known. From the website “Behind the Name: the etymology and history of first names” Hildebrand is German meaning "battle sword" from Germanic hild "battle" combined with brand "sword". 2009. Made and received by me. Gesualdo Carozza.-28One wonders whether a child ‘found’ in the street in the morning in December in the Abruzzo would be alive. … . In the book entitled. to whom was given the name of Ildebrando54 and the surname of Alighieri. Paolo Muzi. son of Nicola. tailor. both born and living in Popoli. The same person has declared that on 21st of December 1867 gave birth to a boy. Camillo di Felice. From that it has been conceived the present act that is undersigned by me notary and the witnesses but not by (Mrs) Paolini.m. born and resident in Popoli.. called by the name of Ildebrando and with the surname of Paolini. June 5. mention is made of an Archdeacon Hildebrand.. Director of the Ministero per I Benie Le Attivita Cultural. As a result of this recognition the afore-said Ildebrando. This was stated and accepted by Angiola Paolini. on 22nd of that month and year at 6:00 p. The Piedmont is adjacent to Lombardy. embroiderer. was a common Lombard name. Such a record was found through an inquiry to the Comune di Popoli which revealed a happy resolution: Chiesa Madonna della Grazia Pag. 55 54 .53 there had to be a record of a name change as Alfredo would have had to produce a birth record to the civil authorities for his marriage. translated by Prof. who was presented to the bailiff of the civil status in Popoli by Camillo di Felice. The Normans in Sicily by John Norwich (who also wrote A Short History of Byzantium ). daughter of the late Cassiodoro. or Hildeprand. just Article 185 of the Civil Code in force. and by this Act she recognizes him as a real son. A more probable scenario is that the farmer. then the administrative district. Archivio Di Stato Di Pescara.

69(80). though unstated. Since every male is registered for the draft.org/en/Italy_Military_Records 56 . perhaps a relative such an uncle or aunt were appointed guardian. Beatrice and Alfredo moved to Naples and opened a tailor shop. No records have been located to determine whether or not he was a ward of the Commissioner of Foundlings. After several inquiries to various state archives. he took the surname of his mother: Paolini. He may have had some savings that served as capital to start the enterprise. his father is cited as “ ignoto ”: unknown. Thus he appears to have been rejected for service for his lack of physical stature and/or. To this injustice was added the lack of recognition by his father which also must have been interpreted by Alfredo as a lack of worth and honor. A written entry states: “Declared in review or special inspection in the nearby [civil] District of Aquila to be lacking/failing in his measurements of height and chest which were 1. https://wiki.” How she did this is unknown. Alfredo was conscripted in Popoli. To initiate this new enterprise in a large city would have required courage and possibly some assistance. draft records list every native Italian male who was born from about 1850 to the present and do who did not leave the country at an early age. Sometime before the birth of their first child. An illegitimate child was not recognized as a fully constituted member of society. “Conscription of all males at the age of eighteen was instituted in 1865. More than likely.56 there had to be a lista di leva . however unintended. it is possible that he. it is concluded that his father never publically acknowledge paternity and probably never provided any financial support. because he may have been the sole support for his mother who did not remarry. they had some financial assistance from Don Francesco. Therefore. probably between the age of eighteen and twenty or about the year 1885.” Italy Military Records . adulthood was reached quite early and in a very short interval of time. along with Beatrice. His occupation is given as falegname or carpenter. Alfredo’s conscription record was provided by the Archivio di Stato di L’Aquila.familysearch. probably in late 1896.-29In short. had learned the trade and business well enough to open a shop. even though the child was completely innocent of any misdeed. Every Italian male— even those obviously disabled— was and still is required to report to the draft board for a physical exam. height 5' 5" (chest: 31"). she states that “she kept him always with her” and “felt responsible for his education. age seventeen. In any case. The consequence seems to have been a heighten sensitivity to slights and indignities. or Angiola herself had been appointed as his “foster” mother. For Beatrice. If Alfredo had been a tailor in the employ of Don Francesco.” that is. or record of conscription. While his mother may have told him the identity of his father. In Alfredo’s application for a passport. An illegitimate child at this period of time and place bore a stigma that was impossible to erase.

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Vol. Italy has been mainly an agrarian country. such as annual income or size of property by periods of time for individuals or families in the area of Popoli would provide the means of analysis that would determine whether or not the clientele of the Del Grande were affected. What was the change that affected his class or his profession that made him decide to emigrate? Many studies identify causes irrespective of their locality. Arcangela Del Grande. a measure of wealth. “Some Socio-economic Emigration Differentials in Rural Italy.S. Don Francesco was an artisan and a merchant. however. and ignorance. and so it must have affected the Del Grande. As of this writing. Ideally. Interestingly enough. oppression. Economic Development and Cultural Change . 7. Don Francesco emigrated from Italy to the United States. J. his family and his aunt. What conditions peculiar to the region of Abruzzo and the Comune di Popoli changed that affected Don Francesco and his family? At the time the Del Grande lived in Italy. The conditions that caused the massive and widespread emigration from Italy around the turn of the 20th century have been widely studied and are generally known: corruption. 57 McDonald. The Del Grande were not of these classes. specializing in women’s riding habits.. Their clientele had to be women of the middle class and the aristocracy. certainly better than his countrymen working in the fields.S. The productivity of agriculture affected all classes of Italian society. two years later. October 1958. McDonald of the Australian National University.” Giuseppe Marotta. this article was based principally on a study made in Italy in 1953 by an Australian. no such data has been found. J. These studies have focused on the effect of these factors on the largest and lowest classes of the socio-economic scale: the contandini (farmers/ cultivators) and the braccianti (laborers).-31Chapter 3 The Emigration of the Del Grande Family “ Barbers and tailors we raise chiefly for export. followed him. It is likely that until the time of his decision to emigrate. 1902-1913. 55-72. leaving the impression that these causes prevailed throughout the Italian peninsula. 57 . It is likely that this clientele either decreased in number and/or their wealth so that they could no longer afford the luxury of riding horses for pleasure. pp. with no better prospect for the future. a member of the piccolo borghese . when very often they were prevalent in only one or two regions. Issue 1. Canberra. and until the industrialization started in the 1960's. Return to Naples In 1886. poverty. one study was found that characterizes the structure of land ownership and labor relations by areas and over time with a description of the consequences for the aristocracy and middle class. but how it was manifested in Popoli and how did it come to affect the Del Grande? The Del Grande family were tailors of women’s clothes. he was making a decent living.

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it/ .viaggioinabruzzo.jpg. A copy of.wikimedia. or the Uniform Resource Identifier is at: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.org/wiki/File:Popoli _18_(RaBoe).0 /de/legalcode Courtesy of Viaggio in Abruzzo http://www.-33Popoli The author of this photographs is " RaBoe/Wikipedia” The original image is provided at: http://commons.

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the Deep South lacked entrepreneurs. New York. They were content to earn a meager income with a safe investment in land rather than risk their capital on agricultural enterprise. one he called “The Deep South. Calabria. and west coasts. small landholders lost their land as they could not pay their property taxes. he found a somewhat even distribution of sizes of land holdings. cultivator. most landowners moved to the cities. yields and income were low but apparently acceptable. This change may also explain why Beatrice and Alfredo relocated to Naples and opened a shop there rather than remain in Popoli. The way to America was prepared for the Del Grande family. Still. operated small shops. members of the growing middle class residing in the city purchased land as an investment. proceeded Don Francesco in immigrating to America in 1893 and settling in Utica as well. This occurred in all territories but to a lesser extent in the Deep South. This was a consequence of policies instituted by the government after Italian Unification (1860-1870). either for a visit or for repatriation. As listed on many ship’s manifest. it is quite likely that the Del Grande learned of the opportunities in America. wealthy landholders paid the back taxes or purchased the land and increased their landholdings. The attractions of America were well known by Italians. The owners provided little working capital and practically no managerial direction. relatives of Gemma–a Castricone–had emigrated and settled in Utica. these new. took white-collar jobs.” In the Deep South. Large landholdings of families and the Church were confiscated and distributed to the peasants. that is. not a great deal of difference between rich and poor. and consequently there was a somewhat even distribution of wealth. Both owner and contractor looked for an immediate return on their investment. and so the contracts were annual–an insufficient period of time for a contractor. or sharecropper to invest time and money in more productive technology. It is concluded that the Del Grande family lost its clientele in that they declined in wealth and/or the moved to the city. Abruzzi-Molise. Consequently. Many small rentiers moved to Naples or secured office jobs with the civil service throughout Italy. north. In many territories. In short. Both the old wealthy landholders–who often weren’t very wealthy–and the nouveau riche – leased their land to contractors or middlemen who in turn hired giornalieri (day-laborers) or sharecroppers to cultivate the farmland. . the old. McDonald states: The non-cultivators generally lounged in the piazza. the decision must have been made with much trepidation. not only from newspaper reports but from friends and relatives that had immigrated and then returned. or moved to the cities.-35McDonald studied sixteen regions of Italy and then combined them into four groups or territories. Another tailor in Popoli. namely. Basilicata. Given the many persons and families that emigrated from Popoli and the Abruzzo. An analysis of emigration usually considers causes that “pushed” out émigrés and those that “pulled” or attracted them to the receiving country. Having little interest in the business and the land. Achille Ciferni. and Sicily’s east. not capital. In addition.

-36The thought of emigration must have weighed heavily on Don Francesco. To leave Popoli meant leaving friends and extended family–brothers and sisters, aunts, uncles, and grandparents. For Don Francesco, it meant leaving all that he had invested in his home, his business and his town. He was a respected member of the community with an established business and a clientele even though diminished. As an immigrant, he would have to start anew at the bottom rung of the ladder. Perhaps more painful, he would be leaving his homeland. However poor, however corrupt, however plagued by catastrophes, Italy was still a glorious land with a rich cultural heritage that made every Italian proud. It would mean that he would no longer wake to the bells of the churches as they sounded the call to prayer throughout the town. He would no longer see the surrounding mountains in their various colors of the season nor see the hues of the Castello di Popoli depending upon the angle of the sun. He would no longer attend the church in which he and his wife were married and their children baptized as had his parents and grandparents before him.

He would no longer spend a few minutes talking to the Ottos –those men in their eighties–as they sat on the benches in the piazza to play cards or simply doze in the sun. He would no longer hear the boys and girls shout and laugh as they poured out of the school each day. He would no longer walk the vicoli and le scale in pietre which he knew by heart. All these sights and sounds would only be a memory.
Courtesy of Vulk.an www.flickr.com/photos/vulkan/135299277/

Photo courtesy of Giovanni Lattanzi at www.inabruzzo.it/fotoabruzzo

-37Chapter 4 Life for the Paolini in Naples

The History of Naples Greek settlers founded a city they called Parthenóp ç58 along a bay on the west side of the Italian peninsula in the 8th century BCE. Next to Parthenóp ç , they later they built a new city–a new polis or Neapolis; hence the Italian name of Napoli . The city became the capital of the Angevin Dynasty. When overthrown, it became a possession of the Spanish Empire during which time Spanish viceroys were installed to govern the city and southern Italy, the most notable being “Pedro Álvarez de Toldedo, who was responsible for considerable social, economic and urban progress in the city.”59 During this period Naples became the second largest city in Europe and a center of artistic creativity. After a brief loss of control to the Habsburg Empire, the city returned to the rule and capital of the Spanish Bourbons in 1738 under Charles VII. For a brief period, it was a republic when the pro-Republican aristocracy revolted; however, it was overthrown by a counter-revolutionary religious army, and the Bourbons were restored. It again fell to Napoleon and was ruled by his brother-in-law Jochim Murat as the capital of the Kingdom of Naples. Upon Napoleon’s defeat, it was returned to the Bourbons and the kingdoms of southern Italy and Sicily were combined as the Kingdom of Two Sicilies and served as the capital. Naples was a city with a little over a half a million population 60 when Beatrice and Alfredo arrived in 1896. It was a city of great contrasts of rich and poor. The palaces of the rich and powerful were magnificent. There were three large castles which probably could be seen from almost anywhere: Castello Sant'Elmo, Castello dell'Ovo, Castello Nuovo . Looking down and south from Piazza Dante , one would see the port and the Bay of Naples; looking up and north, one would see the Palazzo Capodimonte (the summer residence and hunting lodge of the kings of the Two Sicilies). Downtown, one could walk in the grand Piazza Plebiscito , past the Palazzo Reale (one of the four residences used by the Bourbon Kings) and the church of San Francesco di Paola . A few steps away was the Galleria Umberto I , a public shopping gallery recently built (1887-1891) and across the street was the Reale Teatro di San Carlo .

Parthenópe- was named after the siren in Greek mythology said to have washed ashore at Megaride after throwing herself into the sea when she failed to bewitch Ulysses with her song.
59

58

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Naples#Quarters

“Largest Cities of the Earth” (includes the population of Naples in 1899: 544,057), The World Almanac and Encyclopedia , Press Publishing Co., Pulitzer Building, New York, 1901, p.384.

60

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-39Napoli

Palazzo Reale

Castel Nuovo

Palazzo Capodimonte

Piazza Dante circa 1956

Castello dell'Ovo

Port’Alba

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org/ Tenements .-41Naples about 1900 Bread Vendor Provision Store Washing Clothes Photo courtesy of Mary Melfi at http://www.italyrevisited.

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hence the name ‘salita ’ meaning ascent or climb (see map). and is. souvenirs. Artisans work in their shops creating their wares. as it was the lower decumanus61 –the main east-west avenue of the city in its Roman period. the addresses are given in the birth records of their children plus a certificate from the city regarding Alfredo: Children’s Names62 Armando Adolfo (Adolph) Arturo (Arthur) Aldo Attilio Amelia (Emily) Attilio (Otto) Donato Date of Birth Address/Country 15 Feb 1897 36 Via Salita Ventaglieri. Not far from Piazza Dante . When he went to school. churches. as from Castello Sant’Elmo . the street seems to be a narrow chasm through the area. it is a steep climb from downtown but more easily reached by a funicular to Montesanto.wikipedia. built during the Paolini residency in Naples. jewelry. a decumanus was an east-west-oriented road in a Roman city. he gave the name of "Otto" as he didn't like "Attilio. The street also gives its name to this indistinctly defined area. Christmas and nativity scenes. The Chiaia Funicular was built in 1889. foreign names were "Americanized". Three of the four addresses of the Paolini family are within this area. the shops spill their wares into the streets selling dolce and coffee. Illinois Their first home was in the Avvocata (advocate or attorney) quarter and on a hill. With raised roll-up doors. or colonia . As in Popoli. books. where the pattern of the streets still reflects the Greco-Roman city of Neapolis. monasteries. Illinois 31 July 1908 Chicago. As many immigrants to American in those days. shops. the area in which the Paolini family resided was the historic center of Naples. and fountains. followed within two years by the Funicolare of Montesanto (Montesanto Funicular). because the Neapolitan song Funiculì Funiculà was dedicated to it." Naples has four funiculars. piazzas .-43Spaccanopoli In contrast to the grandiose downtown. and destroyed various times by Vesuvius eruptions. The street is relatively wide. Shoppers and tourist shuffle along the narrow streets as there are no sidewalks. produce. slowly shifting their attention to attend to potential buyers. [Avvocata quarter] 23 Feb 1899 6 Vico Francesco Del Giudice [San Lorenzo quarter] 23 Dec 1900 29 Via Sapienza [San Lorenzo quarter] 2 Feb 1902 29 Via Sapienza [San Lorenzo quarter] 1904 died in infancy (about 6 months) 1906 2 Via Università [San Lorenzo quarter] 27 Oct 1906 Chicago. Spaccanapoli. convents. The main street was. http://en. 63 In Roman city planning.org/wiki/Funicular 63 62 61 . castra (military camp). It is a densely inhabited with apartment building. literally translated as the "Naples splitter". Men sit on stools and chairs planted outside their shops chatting with neighbors and fellow-shopkeepers. either because non-Italians could not pronounce the foreign name and/or because the immigrant wanted to adopt a new identity as an American. Adolfo and Arturo were Americanized to Adolph and Arthur. and after some years by Central Funicular and Mergellina. Illinois 18 Jan 1910 Chicago. in part. It achieved worldwide fame. flowers. the first railway track in the world built on an active volcano. The most famous funicular in Naples was the Mount Vesuvius Funicular (1880–1944). My father's name was Attilio but his family and friends called him "Ottie" (pronounced "Aha-tee) for short. When viewed from on-high. The main decumanus was the Decumanus Maximus . Amelia became Emily.

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-45Napoli .

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-47Napoli 2008 Spaccanapoli Via Benedetto Croce Via San Gregorio .

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-49Adolfo was born at 6 Vico Francesco Del Guidice64 in the Quartiere San Lorenzo . so much so that she vowed that she would never have children. She commented that Angelina was able to take a freshly 64 A Roman Catholic cardinal (l (1647-1725). Family and Business When she was unmarried. Most likely it is the building at 29 Sapienza as it has an enclosed courtyard with recesses that are now used as individual garages for automobiles but which certainly could have functioned as small shops. It may well have been their home but it is doubtful that it had served as a tailor shop. The building is recessed with two entrances. Alfredo always wanted a daughter.65 the bell tower of a church. My father Attilio weighed over 12 pounds at birth! Alfredo's mother Angiola. or at least no more than one. The university is named after its founder Frederick II. who went by the name Angelina. it is rather dark and gloomy. she specifically said that she recognized the door Spaccanopoli circa 1900 that they had installed. Beatrice said that her mother-in-law had been a professional cook. about a block from their former residence at 6 Vico Francesco Del Guidice . accompanied Beatrice and Alfredo’s move to Naples and lived with them. Not only was he disappointed at the birth of each of his five sons. It was founded in 1224 and is the world's oldest state university. Vico is short for vicolo which means narrow street or alley. she said that she found the building of the tailor shop in which the family lived. When Beatrice returned in 1953. and the Universitá digli Studi di Napoli Federico II66 is about two blocks south. In the period of thirteen years. At one end is the Campanile of Santa Maria Maggiore della Pietrasanta . Arturo and Aldo were born at 29 Sapienza (wisdom). It was especially heavy with pretty plate glass. Their business and living quarters were in the same building. The name maybe derived from the fact that the Accademia di Bella Arti is about a hundred meters to the west. 66 . king of the Holy Roman Empire. and indeed it is a narrow street with almost no entrances to buildings nor shops. The church was named after a holy stone ( pietrasanta ) that was said to grant indulgences when 65 kissed. he actually refused to look at them or speak to his wife for a time. Beatrice had to endure this contemptible behavior despite the fact that she had extremely painful childbirths as she was quite small (under 5 feet) and all her babies were large. especially in that period. Contrary to most men. but did not mention where she had been employed. it is also one of the oldest academic institutions in continuous operation. Due to the narrowness of the street. Beatrice had to take care of her brothers and sisters which she seems to have considered a demanding and unpleasant task. Beatrice had eight children.

to the annoyance of Beatrice. he was content to just get by and enjoy the simple pleasures of life. “Just once I’d like to dirty a plate at your house. Enrico Caruso (1873-1921). Here is your ticket if you want to come. Thus their patrons were of the middle class and aristocracy. Phonograph Album . and she also worked in the tailor shop. and then put the parts back in place to form a whole chicken. it was playing cards with his friends." In those days. She attended operas at the famous Reale Teatro San Carlo . Alfredo and Beatrice were tailors for women’s clothing. who deemed it their privilege to pay for their purchases when it suited them and not the shopkeeper. and had seafood dinner at restaurants on the docks of the Bay of Naples. rent and materials plus income for themselves to live. either in the piazza or at home. Apparently he enjoyed his status of ‘merchant tailor’ and owner. and so it must have been stressful for her at times. enjoyed the many festivals and religious celebrations. For him. Alfredo had no ability to dance and preferred to stay home with his card-playing friends. Knowing his place. and Beatrice could never completely trust her with the children. She returned home. and so Alfredo had no choice but to attend. who once remarked to one of his guests. As mentioned above. One Sunday after church.” A Night at the Opera Men playing cards in Naples In spite of these aggravations. started his career singing on the beach at Naples. Beatrice loved life in Naples. Beatrice liked to go to the opera and to go dancing. Social etiquette demanded the serving of food and drink. In 1903 and 1905. children between the ages of six and nine were required to attend school. As the shop of the Del Grande in Popoli. then decorate it to make it an attractive dish on the table. "I bought two tickets for the opera tonight. Apparently Alfredo’s mother suffered some form of mental debilitation as she was somewhat inept. Alfredo seemed not to worry about these problems. I’m going. delay in payment often put them in a bind. specializing in women’s riding habits. she passed the Reale Teatro San Carlo and bought two tickets to the opera. Evidently the tailoring business went well–at least for awhile--because Beatrice mentioned that they had a couple of employees. As with many Italians. and not willing to embarrass or demean himself.-50killed chicken and debone it. Alfredo refused to request payment even when urged to do so by Beatrice. but Beatrice had to keep an eye on her as well as her four young sons. said to Alfredo. Angelina did help with household chores. it was unthinkable for a woman to attend a social function without an escort. and laying one ticket on the table. The famous tenor. There was always some informal entertainment on the beach. They had debts of wages. Armando and Adolfo probably attended school.

and socio-economic groups. was a mixture of political ideas. and so there was very high unemployment and impoverishment. and so they employed the Camorra as a means of suppressing potential mob violence which was for many of the populace was the only way to express their discontent and/or seek a living. the lazzaroni seem to have become organized and earned money. and as she approached it. which range from street urchins ( scugnizzi ) and swindlers ( imbroglione ) to thieves ( lazzaroni ). etc. This was a dangerous and threatening situation for the aristocracy. they extorted money from persons wanting governmental actions. “This is an expensive ring. The description of the affect of the Camorra on Naples in the 19th and early 20 th century is taken largely from The Camorra . Why don't you give me half as I'm sure that you can sell it for more than twice that amount?" Beatrice smiled sweetly and replied. smuggling. they became tools of the Bourbon [Ferdinand II] ruling class. and it was old then!" One could outwit swindlers. but extortion takes money from any profitable business enterprise. honest or otherwise. she spied a ring on the pavement. As she was walking. and were used to betray revolutionaries and liberal Republicans in the establishment of a Republic (23 January 1799 to 13 June 1799). "They were trying to pull that trick when I was here in 1906. avoid the Camorra . albeit slow and lagging behind the North. However the supply of workers greatly exceeded demand.. more and more. parry street urchins. 1996. but she did relate an amusing incident when she visited in 1953. Naples was. there was a great influx of people to Naples because it offered the possibility of work. Naples added one that is less often included: a criminal organization. written by Tom Behan. building permits. While the camorristi were of the poor.-51Big-Time Players As the cultural environment of Naples inculcated her love of classical music and opera. and is. drug trafficking.67 Many of their ‘enterprises’ pander to people’s foibles. Routledge. and still. 67 . Beatrice never mentioned falling victim to these criminals when she lived in Italy. It may not make direct demands for cash but just impose the requirement that materials be purchased from certain dealers which demand slightly higher prices due to an “excise tax. such as contracts.’ This enabled the camorristi to learn the levers of political power. Suffice it to say that in the period of Boubon rule in which there was some economic growth. but Neapolitans could not. etc. At this time. in other words. but also from extortion of goods arriving at the port and passing through the city gates–about 10 percent of the value. “Their position as policemen naturally gave them greater freedom to manoeuver and they quickly moved into the contraband industry. not only from gambling and theft. "Look what we found!" he exclaimed. Politics in Naples. and organized crime (the Neapolitan Mafia is called the Camora ). can not. and ward off robbers. as in many large cities.” There are several historical versions as to how the Camorra came into existence. prostitution. but also obliging shopkeepers and merchants to take smuggled instead of official goods. a man came forth and snatched up the ring. political factions. Even after Italian Unification. well-known for its criminal elements. the new ruling circle of middle class business owners and professionals turned to the Camorra to maintain ‘law and order. bribery. probably worth at least ^^^^ lire. not only extorting money from those already smuggling goods. such as. New York. the political culture must have influenced her orientation and attitudes as well.

p. February 1995.18. and economic theories flowing from the Enlightenment. together with a Syllabus of Errors . http://www. Among the eighty propositions advanced.22. governmental leaders. A few years later Ciccotti wrote that the campaign: ‘had a clear aim. the Roman Catholic Church was opposed to most of the ‘ -isms ’ of the day71 and was particularly scornful of socialism. 68 Behan..90-91] 71 72 Behan.” 68 In the post-Unification period. Italy: A Modern History. led by a priest named Vito Vittozzi. managed to stop the election of socialist deputy Ettore Ciccotti in the Vicaria area. p. of breaking the working-class movement and the Trades Council in Naples. 69 During this same period. freedom of conscience and the press. were all challenged along with socialism. the Papacy perceived as selfishness and license.. and Bible societies. Ibid. number 79 asserted that freedom of discussion corrupted the soul. Chicago and Naples had much in common. p.” 70 The Camorra was often used to breakup strikes and protest marches. p. the owners of businesses.000 members. "From Liberalism to Fascism: The Church-State Conflict over Italy's Schools. traders found that they were still paying far less than the official price.’” 72 This conflict among the government. What the liberals praised as self maximization. Ann Arbor." The History Teacher.p. with a reported membership in August 1872 of 800-1. Frank J.” [Smith. 1959. Denis Mack. and number 32 said that the clergy had a natural right to avoid military service. The University of Michigan Press. 69 70 From the end of the 18th century the Papacy found itself in conflict with the liberal philosophical. A series of popes from Pius VI (1775-1799) to Pius IX (1846-1878) challenged what they perceived as liberalism's dogma of human freedom and its assumption that society and state existed for the self-fulfillment on the individual. and unions were organizing workers of trade and industry: “The socialist tradition in Naples goes back as far as December 1868. especially construction projects for rebuilding many of the city’s oldest areas. . when a branch of Karl Marx’s First International was founded. “In 1904 the Camorra . Religious toleration. political. liberalism. p. Number 2. and modern civilization. Coppa.20. Ibid. 135. the French Revolution. the policies and programs based upon socialism were transforming the political discourse. the validity of secularist legislation.. and it was denied that the Pope could or should come to terms with “progress.org/stable/494482 “In December 1864 the papal encyclical Quanta cura appeared. and the Camorra .-52Once they had paid off the Camorra . rationalism. which all emphasized freedom from restraint. and the industrial revolution. Confronting the socialists were not only the owners of companies. The city’s economy became increasingly dominated by council contracts. Volume 28.23. the Camorra infiltrated many sectors of Neapolitan society.jstor. the Church and the unions must have formed Beatrice’s own values and judgments that would be the basis for her own involvement in the major issue of her time in America.

-53Napoli Castello Sant'Elmo Napoli-Guglia dell'Immacolata View from Castello Sant'Elmo Reale Teatro San Carlo Cloister of San Gregorio Armeno Church of Gesu Nuovo View of Mount Vesuvius from Castello Sant'Elmo .

-54- .

the city grew because of the expansion of the railroads. He is not known to have traveled with anyone.gov/statab/hist/HS-07. and then on to New York City. and Zaino is a common name in Popoli. New York Passenger Lists. Line: 8.. Source Citation: Year: 1896. 1975 [c1940] ‘U.73.org/files/public/NY-TeacherGuide.pdf Briggs.ncge. but an Ang. Census Bureau. p. Statistical Abstract of the United States: 2003' http://www. he booked himself on the upperdeck. The river was a major transportation route before 1800 that enabled the transport of agricultural products to Albany on the Hudson River. 1820-1957 [database on-line]. Page Number: 6. In 1825.com. George. UT. New York.75 It then grew into a major textile manufacturing center and later a major player in the A Busy Corner. which probably meant a second class cabin. 78 77 . The City of Utica. Prepared by: National Council for Geographic Education (NCGE). Yale University Press.S. Americans by choice : history of the Italians in Utica . Gersmehl. many Italians labored in railroad construction and brickyards. and the name Zaino is still found in the Utica telephone directory.pdf 76 75 74 73 Schiro. New York (circa 1900) tool and die industry. which thrived in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Microfilm Roll: M237_658. 2010.. 1896. USA: Ancestry. 1896 and probably proceeded directly to Utica. Provo. Carol A.. New York The city of Utica was built near the Mohawk River in upstate New York.census. 1978. By 1900.76 It was a boomtown with a sizeable Italian colony when Don Francesco arrived in 1896. He was good to himself. With the great influx of immigrants in the late 1800s. for rather than steerage. Inc. Utica. Ancestry. In the late 1800s and early 1900s. 178. 1890-1930 . http://www. the Erie Canal was completed which enabled commerce to extend across the state to the city of Buffalo on Lake Erie. New York Don Francesco Emigrates Francesco Paolo Del Grande sailed from the Port of Naples on the SS Italia about April 25.661 78 or about 3%. 2009. New York: Transportation Connectins Along the Erie Canal Route . Microfilm Serial: M237. the population of Utica was 56. 74 He arrived at the Port of New York on May 7. New Haven. John W. An Italian Passage: Immigrants to Three American Cities. (probably Angelo) Zaino is listed on the manifest.. Arno Press.383 making it the 66th largest city in the United States77 with an Italian population of 1.com Operations.-55Chapter 5 Del Grande in Utica.

80 “ Lower Genesee Street Historic District”. families and second-generation adults. 166. 85 79 Briggs.. In a little less than two years after his immigration. they were migratory laborers. 1982.” http://www. who planned to work. Clearly. save money. http://wapedia. and a finally a mature community of single men and women immigrants. and return home. An Italian Passage . 79 “Mens’ clothing was an important industry. his immigration to America was permanent. September 26. 81 Combination artisan-merchants included seven custom tailor shops. Unable to earn a livelihood in their home countries. 1906. Historians use the phrase "birds of passage" to describe immigrants who never intended to make the United States their permanent home. Many Italians emigrated to America hoping to earn enough money to return to Italy and buy land. An Italian Passage: Immigrants to Three American Cities. he filed his Declaration of Intention ("first papers") on February 8. New York. he was not a “bird of passage”84 . a colony of families with young children.edu/historyonline/italian_immigration.uh. Among immigrant groups to America. offering both skilled and semi-skilled jobs.C. quoting Briggs: Textile production was the leading industry of Utica.-56Socio-Economic Patterns of Italian Immigrants Much of the socio-economic history in this section is taken from a study entitled. p. Washington.mobi/en/Italian_American 85 84 83 . The Lower Genesee Street Historic District was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1983. Lower Genesee Street Historic District.”80 in Utica. Most were young men in their teens and twenties. National Park Service. An Italian Passage .83 The decision was made three months before the arrival of his wife and children.. One of the cities studied was Utica.cfm Overall. National Register of Historic Places. New York State Division for Historic Preservation. 20 to 30 percent of Italian immigrants returned to Italy permanently. and a number of manufacturers and wholesalers of ready-made clothing were located within the district along Lower Genesee Street during the nineteenth century. Briggs. The settlement of Italians in Utica went through three stages in the period of 1890-1930: A settlement of largely unmarried male laborers. p. 1898 to become a naturalized citizen. 1890-1930 . 82 Obviously Don Francesco saw the opportunities for himself and his family.digitalhistory. written by John W. D. 113. Petition for Naturalization. 187. Portions of the text were adapted from a copy of the original nomination document: John Harwood. “Italian Immigration. 82 81 Briggs. nomination document.. p.. Italians had the highest rate of returning to the old country. Briggs. and Oath of Renunciation and Allegiance of Francesco Paolo Del Grande. An Italian Passage .

Del Grande .-57Manifest of the SS Italia listing Franc.

-58Manifest of the Tartar Prince April 3. 1898 Listing Gemma Castricone and Family .

and German. While Don Francesco was in America. He never saw her. whether he worked as a merchant tailor. 92.to their next daughter who was born March 1. Somewhat surprisingly. 1898 . a tailor in a clothing store. but rented an apartment or house just prior to the arrival of his family. there is no indication of where or how he was employed. they gave the same name–Italia88 with the middle name of Arminda 89-.87 It is probable that Don Francesco resided in the boarding house. It is most likely that he worked in a garment factory for at least the first few years until he could establish his reputation as a skilled craftsman. it was populated mainly by Italian. Arcangela Del Grande. their infant daughter Italia died. She had been born the day after he sailed from Naples. 1902] 63 Catherine Street [according to the marriage record of a daughter: April 3. Irish.] Their pattern of moving frequently in Popoli is repeated in Utica: 439 Bleecker Street [according to the manifest of Gemma and the family. As is a common Italian custom. Her name is recorded in the 1900 census as Italy. that is. etc. According to the ethnicity of the names on the 1900 census sheets for this area. New York. 1903] The first address is characterized as an “Italian Boarding House” as listed in the Utica City Directory for the year 1898. and Gemma and the children were still in Italy. 17 March 1898] 28 Second Street [according to the city directories of 1897 and 1899] 59 Jay Street 86 [according to the 1900 census: 13 June 1900] 32 Devereux Street [according to the birth record of Donato Del Grande: January 22. New York. 1898 along with Don Francesco’s aunt. 1899 in Utica. Utica City Directory.-59The Family Follows Gemma and the children arrived April 3. Preferred Positions While Don Francesco stated that his occupation was a tailor in the 1900 census. Utica. a factory. [Her story is described in a separate chapter. All these residences are in what is now the old section of Utica. 89 . The Utica Directory Publishing Company. Italian immigrants were able to advance quite quickly either into supervisory positions within large companies or to establish their own companies: 86 The census indicates that the house was rented. 87 88 This name is very probably a misinterpretation or mis-spelling by the recorder as I have never seen it listed in the Registri dello stato civile nor in any on-line listing of Italian names. It is generally reported that her family called her Lily while her biography records her name as Lillian. p.

91 92 93 94 . Marotta. 93 Briggs continues: “Striving for success through moving up in the emerging corporate and bureaucratic organizations of modern industrial society was delayed for Italians by this early reinforcement of more traditional routes to status and power. now probably called Angeline. but they much preferred to be independent shop owners or contractors. 113. in 1902. p. married Domenico Del Vecchio. 90 Utica. 190. thus the Del Vecchio and the Del Grande were living in the same building though whether they shared the same living quarters is unknown. which by 1902 employed more than 300 Italian tailors. Angiolina. who have no need for other quarters than a sunlit balcony large enough to hold themselves and their tools. An Italian Passage . she was the primary caretaker of four children under the age of twelve. Francesco. 91 Briggs makes an interesting observation though he provides no hard evidence: To be sure. Briggs.. to the sizable establishment of Vito Pietrafessa in the central business district of the city. some of whom moved into entrepreneurial roles. In all probability. 1951. married Carmino Alfano. and also a tailoress. p.. 166-167. A year later. 1902. Briggs. Pietrafessa came to Utica in 1899 to serve as a superintendent in a large American firm. 1903. An Italian Passage . Duton & Co.. a foreman in the Curlee Clothing Company. for their daughter Gilda. The extract of the birth record of the Del Vecchio’s first child. These independent shops ranged from one-person organizations which served a neighborhood clientele. E. If Don Francesco was a ‘merchant tailor. Briggs. in describing artisans in Naples: Naples is poor in industries and rich in sun..-60The prominence of the textile and clothing industries in Utica attracted skilled Italian tailors. their songs. shows the same address as the residence of Angiolina when she married. Both men were Italian immigrants who had arrived in the prior ten years. The Del Grande children seemed to have adapted well and been received by the community. . It is a city of craftsmen. 190. born June 26. 92 This characterization was also made by an Italian author. Italians served as foremen and in similar supervisory positions in the textile and construction industries.. Giuseppe. An Italian Passage . on April 3. now working as a tailoress and age 22. Return to Naples.’ she may well have assisted him in this enterprise. p.” 94 The 1900 census lists no occupation for Gemma Castricone but it was common for wives to contribute to the household income by taking in laundry or helping their husbands run a small business or boarding house.P. Giuseppe Marotta. An Italian Passage . their debts and their ineradicable melancholy. 90 Briggs. had a prominent contingent of tailors who provided important leadership in the early organization of the [Italian] colony.

-61Map of Utica (2010) .

-621900 Census Sheet for the Del Grande Family .

such as strikes and political organization. John W. 1978. both Italian and American. and that they did cooperate among themselves to improve their condition and the future of their children. he provides evidence that Italians. Briggs 97 presents evidence that Italian villagers did not act solely for the benefit of their family. Auster. . He examines the extent of cooperation within Italian enclaves in America and the extent of involvement in the wider community. region. In short. have proposed explanations for the poverty of Italians in Italy.-63Italian-American Colonies: Community or Amoral Familism Several researchers. Among the explanations was the notion that Italians. This characteristic95 was thought to persist in the Italians that immigrated. 4.html Briggs. with a large proportion of small landholders and with tenants participating through share-farming contracts in the capitalization and management of the enterprise. rates of emigration were high [ such as the Abruzzo ]. 1890-1930 . the émigrés were not solely contadini and laborers: 95 Banfield. nation. primarily of Latinos. 98 97 96 Ibid. Lawrence. An Italian Passage: Immigrants to Three American Cities. were active in civic affairs.com/vfr/archives/006103. commonly labeled amoral familism . Edward. p. especially the poor and uneducated contandini and braccianti.amnation. The Moral Basis of a Backward Society .. The following presents a partial picture of his findings for Utica. Rather than being civic-minded and working for the benefit of one’s community. it was believed that Italians evaluated any prospective action or policy solely in terms of its benefits or liabilities for one’s family. New York. large and rather discrete classes of landless laborers were at odds with the magnates and developed greater laboring-class solidarity. He also identifies the socio-economic structure from when these immigrants came and their socioeconomic classification. John W. He identifies the types of people who did cooperate and then documents the extent to which Italians in Italy cooperated in supporting the establishment of schools for their children and expressing concern for attendance. particularly for the period after Italian Unification from 1860 to the beginning of the Great War in 1914. he also identifies the existence of self-help societies. 1958)..96 While not explaining the condition of poverty in villages in southern Italy. and had low rates of transoceanic migration. “Exposing the Open-Borders Arguments Part Two: False Parallels with Other Cultures. In areas of highly concentrated landholdings.” The Myth of Hispanic Family Values. held firm to the guiding principle of La famiglia sopra tutto –the family above all. New Haven. First. The poor in these areas resorted to militant defensive activities. the type of property distribution explained or determined the rates of emigration: In areas of mixed property distribution.98 Secondly. Yale University Press. both in Italy and America. This hypothesis of immigrant behavior is often held by some who view the immigrants of today. it was found that. http://www. as having the same attitude. as described in chapter 3. etc.

came largely from the upper levels of the working classes in the town and from the middle range of the agriculturalists (emphasis added). the Del Grande are illustrative: Del Grande Children Beatrice Gilda Angiolina Hugo Maria Ines Carl Albert Italia (Lily) Married Italian Yes Yes Yes n/a Yes Yes n/a South unknown Same Region South South South Paolini Children Armando Adolph Arthur Aldo Emily Otto Married Italian Yes No Yes n/a No No Yes Same Region Yes 99 Ibid. that is. then marriages of Italian immigrants would have been restricted to spouses from the same village or town. endogamous marriages did occur. p.. The emigrants. then. to be concerned with only that which is within the sounds of the church bells.100 Again. 9. 81. Briggs found that when there was a significantly large population from a village or town.99 Here again. a group that provided more than their proportional share of the emigrants. 100 . but since such large populations from a particular village was rare. There was even the option of returning to Italy in search of a bride or by arranging to have a potential bride sent.-64Larger size and high incidence of literacy and franchise holding also characterized the families of emigrants of the artisan class. Outlook: campanilismo or country Another commonly held belief was the Italian immigrants were very parochial. an attitude and behavior labeled campanilismo . Ibid. If such an attitude and behavior was so ingrained. they were concerned only with local matters and compelled to maintained their local ways. p. endogamy rarely occurred though Italians immigrants did tend to marry those of the same region. the Del Grande and Paolini families fit this description. that is.

later. However. They encouraged each other in their businesses.-65Mutual-Aid Societies As in Italy. At first. and cultural problems. aiding and caring for the sick and destitute members. benefits were solely at the discretion of the society and not by a fixed amount as an insurance policy. The first function of these organizations was to provide money that offered sick benefits and burial cost. unlike American worker societies. It was here that men learned of job opportunities.. The first such organization in Utica was called Società Italiana di Progesso ed Aiuto (The Italian Society for Progress and Aid) in 1889. or bowled Italian style called bocce . Finally. They often grew out of the informal associations fostered in the local saloon which served as a social and recreational center and union hall.”101 Their leaders tended to have some employable skill and to be upwardly mobile.” Boosterism There were also organizations of Italian Americans that were formed in order to defend ‘the good name of Italians.’ and correspondingly to improve the manners and morals of Italians so that they would not defame the name but reflect positively on the colony. The paper would also publish articles and editorials that urged its Italian readers to improve themselves and to behave in a manner that would reflect positively on the Italian community. . the press became more critical of Italians by emphasizing crime. sports competitions and festivals. they sponsored social occasions such as an annual ball or dance. Such an organization usually had a house organ. and provided a social framework for mutual assistance. Briggs describes them “clearly worker initiated and led. A primary example of this type of organization was and–and still is–the Order Sons of Italy in America. 101 Ibid. followed six years later by a second society called the Società Capi dei Famigli Italo-Americana di Mutto Soccorso (Heads of Family Society for Mutual Aid). anarchism and socialism. 142. and played card games such as briscola and tresette . social dysfunction. picnics. and finally radicalism. however. crowded and ill-kept housing condition. p. Many of them owned sections in cemeteries. passed their idle time in conversation. Italian-Americans formed local organizations to deal with social. economic. Creation of such organizations was in reaction to new stories and editorials in the American press. providing special interest stories. that is. a newspaper that published articles that refuted editorials in the community-wide newspapers that were critical of Italians or that seem to overemphasize stories that reflected negatively on Italians. that is. These organizations also sponsored self-improvement activities such as lectures and evening classes for learning the English language. in today’s parlance. the Italian enclaves were treated as exotic tribal areas in the American press. They formed committees to promote benevolence and charity by visiting. and they provided points of contact for obtaining employment–networking.

now his son-in-law. play. 103 . At the same time. It is likely that the Del Grande family.103 The baptism was performed and recorded in the church of Holy Guardian Angeles in Chicago. Don Francesco became a naturalized citizen. had also moved to Chicago. Cristoforo Colombo was adopted and promulgated as both an Italian and American hero that both the local colony and the wider community could accept and which both could celebrate as one people. probably in 1903. and by law. No record of birth was found in Chicago. they wanted to be accepted as part of American society. his wife and children became naturalized as well. Proving Fealty as Italian-Americans To be accepted as an American required some act of fealty by Italians yet one that would not be seen as rejecting themselves and their heritage. On September 26. a fellow Popolese and tailor. Relocation to Chicago The birth of Don Francesco and Gemma’s eleventh child and third son is recorded on his baptismal record as January 26.-66There was also the issue of identity and acceptance that placed Italian immigrants and their succeeding generations in a quandary. along with Angiolina and Carmino Alfano. A focal point for this issue was that of language. Some urged that it be taught at home or in the schools or in a club or church while others believed that they were Americans and should speak only English. Page 353. They were proud to be Italian. Illinois. both having emigrated from Italy to Utica. not only to function in American society but to be accepted by it. The second-generation often did not learn Italian. Two witnesses listed on his naturalization card: Domenico Del Vecchio. Baptismal record of Donato Del Grande by the Church of Holy Guardian Angels. Their first-generation offspring 102 learned Italian as their parents spoke Italian in the home but learned English in their school. 1903. moved to Chicago after the two weddings and the birth of Donato. Why did they move at this time and to this place? 102 I use the definition for first-generation as those born in America of immigrants. Chicago. Those who had immigrated spoke Italian. and work. Family History Library microfilm 1503304. after having moved to Chicago. 1906. and they wanted to learn English. 1902 and the baptism on August 2. and Achille Ciferni. Entry number 1762. and they wished to maintain their heritage. and Gilda and Domenico Del Vecchio.

-67Petition for Naturalization of Francesco Paolo Del Grande (Page 1 of 4) .

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-69Del Grande Family Gemma Castricone [Del Grande] Francesco Paolo Del Grande Gilda Del Grande Maria Beatrice Del Grande Ungaro Tarquinio Del Grande .

-70- .

-71Alfano Family Carmino Alfano Maria Angiolina Del Grande [Alfano] Angeline (Nean) Alfano Carmine Alfano .

-72- .

Alice Mallen [Fitzpatrick]. Carmino Alfano.-73Alfano Front row left to right: Delores Thurston. Grazia (Grace) Zegarelli Front row: Annie Alfano [Thurston]. Delores Thurston. unknown. Middle row: Angeline Del Grande [Alfano]. Carmine Alfano. Angiolina (Angeline) Del Grande [Alfano] Backrow left to right: unknown Angeline (Nean) Alfano. Angeline [Nean] Alfano. Guiseppe (Joseph) Zegarelli. Red Thurston. Alice Fitzpatrick [Alfano]. Anne Alfano. Kathleen Fitzpatrick [Pettinelli] . Back row: Florence Alfano [Pecheone].

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chicagohistory. which. and he specialized it lady’s riding habits. for they were all tailors at one time. As the city's population grew. and in sales. only the likely possibilities can be considered as to the why the Del Grande moved to Chicago. The Electronic Encyclopedia of Chicago © 2005 Chicago Historical Society. services.1 million by 1890. It is known that Don Francesco was a tailor by profession his whole life. It is doubtful that they were drawn by encouraging reports of a mild climate. provisions. it cannot be stated exactly what Don Francesco. Chicago's population grew from just under 30. It is therefore likely that he moved to Chicago in order to take advantage of the possibilities that it offered.org/pages/198. and from foreign immigration (particularly from Southern and Eastern Europe). and the children did. but most was “real. from the South).html. only an outline can be drawn as to the economic and business situation that existed at the time. Gemma. He must have been aware of the growth of business opportunities in the city of Chicago.-75Chapter 6 The Del Grande Move to Chicago Changes in the Garment Industry favored the Del Grande Having no written document nor any remembrance by a descendent.encyclopedia.2 million. one who made and sold the clothing on a made-to-order basis. It was due to changes in the method of production. and Chicago's population grew by another 55 percent or so over the next two decades. it seems extremely unlikely that he would have moved to Chicago in order to operate solely in such a fashion. 104 . increasingly. http://www. Encyclopedia of Chicago. led to more jobs and more people. By 1910 the city's population had doubled again to almost 2.000 in 1850 to about 300. Some of this growth came from annexation. marketing.” the result of natural increase (an excess of births over deaths among the resident population). In Popoli. and selling. and little corruption. and it would take years for him and his family to develop such a clientele base. internal multiplier effects came into play: more people meant more construction. At best. The most likely possibility was economic opportunity much more favorable to that of Utica. he worked as a ‘merchant tailor. He made women’s clothing. entertainment. The first general factor that favored the choice of Chicago was the size and growth of the city’s population. While it is quite likely that Don Francesco continued to make clothes-to-order for clients through personal contacts in Chicago. 104 The growth in the clothing sector was not due to just population growth. He certainly must have been aware of the new methods of production..’ that is. approaching 3.000 by 1870 then to almost 1. He would have had no established clientele as he did in Popoli.4 million by 1930. and how that situation afforded them opportunities. Again. in marketing. low crime rates. but it is not known whether he was self-employed or worked for a company. in turn. and perforce to iteration after iteration of the same process. rural migration (from the Midwest and. etc.

Selling Style: Clothing and Social Change at the Turn of the Century . p. 106 105 Ibid ..-76Prior to 1860. By the turn of the century. And at the end of the century. Factories were thought to be an improvement but it is obvious that they could be as demanding and as uncomfortable as a sweatshop. Another innovation in the marketing and selling of clothing was the introduction of made-to-measure suits called “tailor to the trade. 107 Schorman. The workers were usually immigrants who had few other employment opportunities and thus were forced to produce large numbers of units of clothing for very small rates. There was no job security and the pay was minimal. 22. 107 . clothing had been made at home or custom made by tailors in their shops. these clothing companies supplied to local merchants in rural areas with sample books and measuring instructions. Rob. Jesse Pope reported on a company that used thirty-nine steps–and thirty-nine workers–to manufacture a man's coat. and more men began to consider these suits acceptable substitutes for custom-tailored clothing. 2003. One historian estimated that in 1880 less than half of men's clothing was purchased ready-to-wear. but by the mid-1890s the figure had grown to more than 90 percent. an increasing number of companies began to manufacture ready-to-wear suits. hundreds of these operations inundated small-town retailers with solicitations for business. University of Pennsylvania Press. It is not clear whether the name sweatshop was derived from the conditions or the name of the middleman. but before the introduction of factories. The workers either worked in their homes and/or in small rooms in tenement buildings that were crowded and dangerous. The desired style suit and the measurements taken were then sent to the company’s central location were the suit was sewn. “After the Civil War. 106 The company described above by Jesse Pope is a factory. page 23.” Starting in the 1890s..”105 The process was described as being thoroughly systematized: “. sometimes families. page 41. clothing companies often used middlemen called sweaters that served as subcontractors to pay for the sewing of garments or parts of a garment on a piecework basis to individual workers or small groups of workers. Charles Cist reported on a Cincinnati business that had subdivided the work of making a pair of pants among seventeen people. Ibid.

” a special variant of women’s outerwear that borrowed fabrics. Abt & Sons. L. Perhaps because making them had never been within the normal scope of the homemaker or professional dressmaker.-77The heyday of the mail-order business occurred between the 1890s and the 1910s. U.1970 . a corollary change in fashion also matched the tailoring experience of Don Francesco: The breakthrough garment in the women’s ready-made industry was the shirtwaist. Part I . 50. though they did not achieve widespread acceptance as ready-made goods until the early 1900s. The popular style had great advantages in terms of flexibility and economy. Schaffner and Marx). albeit one designed for a woman. In fact. padding. junior editors. . and in the 1890s it began to be acceptable to wear the waist and skirt as a complete outfit. No longer content to stay on the farm or in the small home town. a blouse fashioned along the lines of a man’s shirt (“a man’s shirt transformed into a thing of beauty. but also included strictly clothing manufactures such as Spiegel. they wanted to dress for business and that meant a suit. p. Bureau of the Census. As a woman in business. and M. when it was dominated by Montgomery Ward and Sears which sold many types of products. He would have been perfectly suited [pardon the pun] to help design and tailor this new fashion. and Joseph Schaffner (later Hart. Advertisements occasionally featured ready-made tailored suits in the 1800s. etc. these garments gained earlier entrée into a factory system of production. Marcus Marx. Series D 233-682: Detailed Occupation of the Economically Active Population: 1900 . pressing. which is a suit. since skirts and waists could be mixed and matched in ways that would expand a woman’s wardrobe options far beyond Historical Statistics of the United States: Colonial Times to 1970.S. Department of Commerce.” according to one observer). except as indicated) With the growth of commerce came a social revolution: employed women. cut. and styling from tailoring techniques most associated with men’s wear. Kuppenheimer and Harry and Max Hart. Another garment sold ready-made to women by the end of the century was the “tailor-made suit. men made most of these suits because the job required skills that dressmakers ordinarily did not possess. 109 108 Ibid. typists.Con. and they appeared more frequently in the 1890s. page 43. The tailor-made suit had a removable jacket worn over such a waist. In addition. 109 Don Francesco’s specialty was women’s riding habits. they flocked to the city to enter the workforce as administrative support personnel: secretaries. Born & Co. September 1975. This growth in the garment industry in the United States is reflected in the census figures for the occupation of tailor and tailoresses 108 : 1970 Tailors & Tailoresses Percentage change from prior year 1960 1950 1940 1930 1920 1910 1900 71 65% 43 -50% 86 -2% 120 -29% 169 -12% 192 -6% 205 53% 134 (In Thousands of persons 14 years old and over.

2003. Gilda and Angela were also listed as tailors in the 1900 census in Utica.-78what was possible when each costume needed to be complete unto itself. The Making of America Series. They had four additional children: Mary. They then moved to St. This was referred to as the "putting out system" and helpless immigrants were often cheated by fast-talking agents. By 1900. while they report their occupation as tailors. Carlo and Paul. as one of the three areas of the city that had a high concentration of sweatshops. many Italian women and girls also worked at home.000 clothing workers. 13. Perhaps later the Del Grande men found work in a tailor shop. they specify only that they are working in the ‘clothing’ industry. Both men and women were engaged in the needle trades at such establishments as Hart. it is possible that Don Francesco worked in a sweatshop for a few years and possibly joined by his sons Ungaro and Carlo Alberto. 112 . It is more likely that they found work in a factory which provided better working conditions. The Encyclopedia of Chicago describes the Near West Side. they are tailors and they all are working in a tailor shop. page 51. where the Del Grande and Paolini families located. Ethnics. This brought together on the Near West Side a critical mass of perhaps 40. p. 112 Extended Family Members Move to Chicago Domenico Del Vecchio and Gilda also moved to Chicago with their two children. 110 Ibid. in the 1920 census. Ungaro and Carlo Alberto who are also listed as tailors in the clothing industry in the 1910 and 1920 census?111 According to the 1910 census. higher pay. achieving its peak between 1909 and 1914. They lived at 512 Centre Avenue (now Racine Avenue). large clothing factories replaced the homework and sweatshops. Louis sometime between 1910 and 1920 as they are found on the 1910 census in Chicago and on the 1920 census in St. Americans . a good number of them of Italian background. Louis. Schaffner. Louisa. The shirtwaist’s popularity surged throughout the 1890's and 1900s. 111 Candeloro. what can we surmise as to the work of Don Francesco and the Del Grande family. Beatrice and her son Arturo also worked in a factory. Chicago. Dominic Lawrence. Schaffner and Marx. In the early years. first for Alfred Decker & Cohn and later Hart. No reason is known for the move to St. sewing mountains of coats or pants in dim light for pennies an hour. Unfortunately. Chicago's Italians: Immigrants. 110 Based upon the above. Francesco and Nancy. Louis. and Marx. Arcadia Publishing. particularly his sons. and some protection through union membership. Although most sweatshops had been closed due to the opening of factories.

Attilo Paolini said that he played at the Erlanger Theatre116 which did present musicals. 1906. and they lived at 635 S. he gave clarinet lessons.org/wiki/Banda_Ionica Originally called the Palace Music Hall located in the City Hall Square Building.” http://cinematreasures.115 He then worked in a theater orchestra for many years. at 127-139 N. The rest of their children. Florence. “Cinema Treasures. Ann. Petition for Naturalization. 1906 Ship's manifest for the Prince Adalbert that departed Naples. Angeline Jean (Nean) Alfano was born in Utica. but in all likelihood. and he made good money.-79Angiolina (Angeline) Del Grande and her husband Carmino Alfano had their first child. there would be an orchestra. http://en. Clark Street.wikipedia. Italy in 1904. His first jobs were playing in funeral processions at which bands would play as was the custom during this period. Even if a play was not a musical. and so it is concluded that they move back to Utica some time in this period. Their next child.org/theater/984/ 116 115 114 113 . 1903. 1904 listing Antonio Sirimarco. an Italian folk group focused on the brass band traditions of Sicily. Taylor Street on September 26. in Chicago on September 25. Marie. The roots of the music played by the band can be traced to Holy Week and funeral marches. New York on June 8. Operated from the 1930's into the early ‘60s when it closed. Many of the photographs that are now shared among their descendants are those taken by the families in Chicago and sent to the Alfano’s in New York. The theaters did well in the Roaring Twenties. Carmen and Lillian. and it is known that both Carlo Alberto and Ungaro traveled to Utica for special occasions. The site is now the Richard J. The families maintained contact. live theater--not a movie theater. 1907. Tony emigrated from San Sosti. Calabria. All that is known is that he and the Del Grande family resided at 210 W. Italy on April 19.114 He had come alone when he was just a teenager. Centre Avenue (now Racine Avenue) in Chicago along with Tony’s brother Saverio. Patsy. were also born in Utica. Daley Center. No reason is know for the return of the Alfano and the Ciferni. There is no evidence to indicate whether or not the family of Achille Ciferni accompanied his move to Chicago. that is.113 Sometime between 1906 and 1910. it was personal and not financial. The City Hall Square Building/Erlanger Theatre was demolished starting in May of 1962. he returned to Utica as he and his family are listed on the 1910 census. 1904 and arrived at Ellis Island May 4. The only corroboration found was the following statement concerning Banda Ionica . Maria Ines Del Grande married Antonio Sirimarco in 1909. All he had with him was his clarinet. September 26. and Oath of Renunciation and Allegiance of Francesco Paolo Del Grande. and Isabel Daniels Paolini recalled that he played in "No No Nanette" which had a long run. Later on.

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-81- Marie Ines Del Grande [Sirimarco] Marie Ines Del Grande and Anthony Sirimarco Anthony Sirimarco with Carol Jean and Patricia Louise Sirimarco .

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and I hypothesized that either Arcangela misinterpreted the question or the ship’s recorder misunderstood the answer. I sought the birth record of Arcangela. Colin. Normally Italian women use their maiden name. John Parish. in order to locate the church that she and the Del Grande would have attended. Had she died alone? Was there no memorial for her? I was surprised at my own feeling in this matter: that I cared about a woman who I never met and who had probably died a hundred years ago.-83Chapter 7 Arcangela Del Grande My first awareness of Arcangela Del Grande was the appearance of her name on the manifest of the Regina di Italia which arrived at the Port of New York on April 3. I found the 1900 census for the Del Grande family living in Utica. 117 Where would she have been buried? I learned that persons who died at Ellis Island were buried in the cemetery for Manhattan. However. I requested a search of the records from the Registrar of Vital Statistics of the city of Utica. The index lists an “Angiola Del Grande” which I noted but did not consider her to be Arcangela. and she asserted that Arcangela was the mother of Gemma: Gemma takes also her 70-year-old mother Del Grande Arcangela. Agnes (now incorporated in St. but Arcangela was not listed. and wrote of letter of inquiry. 1899 and 1900. after all. she is listed as “Arcangiola del Grande. over 3. again. 1991. which I didn’t know then. an inspection of the actual Atto d’Nascita stipulates il nome di Arcangela while in the column Indicazione . I assumed that she had died between her date of arrival and the date of the census. after all. it had been noted on the ship’s manifest that she had been in the hospital at Ellis Island. I initially accepted this judgment as she was traveling with Gemma but I wondered why she was listed as a Del Grande. Aramark. I started to worry about this woman. She had accompanied Gemma and the Del Grande children on their voyage of immigration to America.net/swe/ellis_island.500 immigrants died at Ellis Island. Anthony of Padua). For the sake of a complete genealogical record.” This indeed was the birth record of Arcangela. My Italian genealogist Pierangela Badia had found this record as well. Mary of Mount Carmel. If she was in the hospital at Ellis Island. Old St. I assumed that the name written was a mistake. and St. Also found at http://sydaby. A search is purchased for three consecutive years at a cost of $20.eget. p. I assumed that there would be a record of the mass given in her remembrance at her passing.xx. On the manifest was the notation that she was going to join her daughter and son-in-law. Ellis Island: The Official Souvenir Guide . The most likely churches were St. John’s Church in St. No record of death was found. the reply was negative. I contacted each but none had a record of her. I continued to formulate hypotheses to guide my search. Genealogical research does strange things to the researcher. New York. probably the Del Grande spoke no English. and that her maiden name was in fact Hamblin. 1898. perhaps she passed away on the island. During its half-century of operation. or her married name which would be Castricone if she was Gemma’s mother. I then identified the churches in Utica and their location relative to the address of the Del Grande family. 117 .htm. so I requested a search for the years 1898. B. 70 years old all dirested (sic ) to Utica NY to Francesco Paolo. I found the record on Family History Library film number 1384889 containing birth records for the years 1827 and 1828. New York.

as she was known in America. she found a manifest record in 1899. I again returned to a year-by-year search of the atti di morti of the Registri dello stato civile for Popoli. With relief. we have shared our genealogical research findings. or perhaps Carmina had died at childbirth and Gemma did not even know that Arcangela was not her birth mother.Paolini family in a fourteen-day trial period. I joined in 2007 where I met the couple Donna Dengler and Daniel Else. When I embarked on my adventures in genealogical research. but only one had a local chapter of members. Carmina Giovani had married Berardino Castricone. Arcangela was an aunt to Don Francesco. Unfortunately for me. I received an E-mail from one Karen Alfano.” said the blind man.” suggested Donna. I needed a fresh perspective. and this time she and Lucia stated with whom they were . I therefore hypothesized that Carmina had died. “I see. then this finding had an unfortunate consequence.Ancestry. Her name was Maria Angiolina (Angeline) Del Grande. and he was the father of Donato Del Grande. her niece and a sister of Don Francesco on the ship Saale . I pursued another avenue to finding Arcangela: a daughter of Don Francesco and Gemma who had married and settled in Utica rather than Chicago. 1869. Instead of finding just the manifest record of Arcangela’s passage with the Del Grande family in 1898. I explained my puzzle to them. I learned the names of her children. I called for help. Also about this time. but I had not subscribed. and I made a minor modification to it–deleting an erroneous record to be specific. census records. Now to find the marriage record of Berardino and Arcangela! It didn’t take long. The database was still there when I returned as a subscriber one year later. I had determined that Don Francesco and Gemma were not first cousins. we have shared dinners and travel adventures in Italy as well as our investigations of our Italian ancestors. I had started a database of the Del Grande . inquiring whether or not I was related to a Beatrice Del Grande. photographs. questions. and leads. Maybe she wasn’t joining them but another family–her real daughter and son-in-law.com. and–ah-ha! I was right: Caterina Giovani died thirteen years after her marriage on March 24. 1869. and I began to contact them. Over the years. I subscribed to www. and she did a search of Ancestry. I had a new cousin! Since the discovery of our kinship. I became aware of several websites that invited membership. Francesco Paolo Del Grande’s father: Gemma and Francesco were first cousins! I thought that I had better find the birth record of Gemma to make certain of this conclusion. My imagination knew no bounds. It also provides an online genealogical database that enables a subscriber to record information and store records found. Berardino had overcome his grief quickly: he married in the same year–September 17. though most had passed away or were mentally incapacitated. but I now had an ally. Her father was Raffaele Del Grande. “Perhaps Arcangela was just accompanying the Del Grande family. I didn’t know where Arcangela had died or been buried. I had hit a brick wall. I told her about Arcangela. Arcangela had sailed with Lucia Del Grande. I found both the birth record of Gemma and her record of marriage to Francesco Paolo: both identified one Carmina Giovani as the mother of Gemma.com. he had married Anna Rosa Liberatore. She was unaware of Arcangela. About a year early.” A whole new pathway opened. Gemma had ‘adopted’ Arcangela as her mother. a website that provides access to records such as the Social Security Death Index. and I had no idea of her relationship to Gemma. Il Circolo Filippo Mazzei is the local chapter of Pursuing Our Italian Names Together (POINT). Through an obituary of Angeline. Within a day or two. naturalization records.-84Del Grande! If she was the mother of Gemma. and she had married Carmino Alfano. etc. and that Berardino had married Arcangela. At about this same time.

-85joining in Utica: Achille whatever. The last name was indecipherable but–and this is difficult to explain but after reading hundreds of handwritten records of the style of that time period. I had found a birth record of Antonio d’Aurelio of Stefano d’Aurelio and Arcangela Del Grande. I continued my search but I also then began to search for a marriage record of Grazia. [I later confirmed that Gennaro died in 1883. one would understand–I would recognize it if I knew it. Maybe it was another daughter and son-in-law of Arcangela.] . I found the birth record of Maria Grazia d’Aurelio. In searching for Del Grande earlier in my genealogical research. starting seventeen years after her birth. 1881–but to Gennaro Di Pillo. I found it: June 3. Left side of the ship’s manifest showing names of Arcangela Del Grande and Lucia Del Grande Right side of the ship’s manifest showing to whom Arcangela and Lucia were going to join I began to search for Arcangela’s marriage record and the marriage record(s) of her daughter(s). Since Stefano and Arcangela could have additional daughters. Antonio’s birth was in 1858. In the year 1855. though I wasn’t sure then that he was related to my Del Grande family. I proceeded to search backwards. The name Achille whatever could not be read as Gennaro Di Pillo.

I glanced at it. Within a week. I had found it by perusing each census sheet in the same ward as the 1920 census. 1920. 9 months. I simply invoked the image viewer and looked through the folder. Before I could start the search again for an earlier census record. her place of burial is Calvary Cemetery in Utica. These were documents that I had gathered over time in my research. New York for Achille Ciferni and Grace Ciferni. I received a verified transcript from the register of deaths: Arcangela Del Grande. and she was passing them to me and other new cousins that we had contacted in our search for long-lost relatives. Peace be upon her! The number of years is incorrect as the birth record clearly states: L’anno mille ottocento ventisette. and then my eyes slowly focused on the name of the second witness for Don Francesco: Achille Ciferni–in typewritten print! I had my man! Naturalization card of Francesco Paolo Del Grande I immediately notified Karen. Since Arcangela’s name hadn’t appeared in the 1930 census. Rather than reading the title of each image.Ancestry.00 money order to the Registrar of Utica. and up came the record. and she was ninety-two years of age in 1920. I have no doubt that she was buried by her daughter and son-in-law as they are buried in the same cemetery. Karen Alfano had receive a trove of photographs from her mother and aunts. asking for the standard three-year search of the years 1920-22. 2" x 3" document. 118 . and then I began to search the census records on www. and it was difficult to determine whether one picture of a man of about age twenty-five was same man in a picture of a man of age sixty-five. We were trying to identify persons in the photographs as most of them had no identification. I thought that there even might be a 1910 census record and indeed there was.-86In every great mystery or detective story. I assumed that she had died between the two decennial censuses. the third member of the Cirfeni household was Arcangela Del Grande! The indexed name was misspelled. Bang! A 1930 census record for 608 Second Street in Utica.com. and now mine came. I was getting close. had died on April 28. She was 92 years old when she died. The image of Don Francesco’s naturalization card appeared–a small. Karen sent me an E-mail: she had found the 1920 census record for Ciferni. She is with family. I fired off a request for a genealogical search of death records with my $22. and so Karen asked me to send her a photograph of a younger Don Francesco. the investigator needs a break–some unexpected piece of luck to bridge to the next step. I knew that I had such a photograph in my computer folder of images. Mixed with images of people were images of documents in a format called . I clicked the link she had sent. age 81 (sic ) years118 . and so Karen had used some creative alternatives to retrieve the record. 26 days. il di ventitre del mese di luglio ": the year 1827 of the 23rd of the month of July.jpg (jay-peg). New York. The Italian name for Grace is Grazia. The man in question was Don Francesco. Now she and her second great grandnephew can both rest peacefully.

(tailor). born in Naples -son.. born in Naples -mother. In any case. occupation. Arturo Paolini. Alfredo is described by his date of birth." replied the doctor. the administrative seat for his home town of Popoli. Ildebrando Paolini submitted an application for a passport 119 to the headquarters of the Casellario Di Polizia Amministrativa which in turn requested approval that a passport be issued from the governmental and police offices of Sulmona. Alfredo Paolini suffered a serious illness. born in Popoli. (21 Dec 1867). age 7. Armando Paolini age 9.” answered Beatrice. Getting Papers in Order On March 24. “They are all in America. Signed by the major of Naples. born in Naples -son. age 5. Maria Beatrice Del Grande (daughter of Francesco Paolo Del Grande) born in Popoli on 2 MAY 1879 -son. a fever of some sort. Adolfo Paolini.-87Chapter 8 The Paolini Decide to Emigrate to America It is not known exactly when.65 mt. Included are the émigrés that will accompany him: wife. The Italian Emigration of Our Times . the doctor did not know the cause or nature of the problem. 1905. "Then I think you should be near them. and parents: “ figlio di Ignoto ” (son of unknown father) and of Angiola Paolini. Angiola Paolini age 71. Aldo Paolini. daughter of Cassiodoro Also listed on the record are Ildebrando’s physical traits: Height: 1. the noted destination was Chicago. age 3. he inquired of Beatrice as to whether she had family that could provide support for her and her family in the event of his incapacitation or death. Harvard University Press. 1919. 119 . the passport was valid for three years. sons and mother: -wife. born in Naples -son. Cambridge. Foerster. [5' 5"] Age: 39 Forehead: normal dimension Eyes: Nose: "Greek" form Mouth: normal size Hair: dark brown Clean shaved with brown moustache Body size: normal Noticeable signs: scar on his forehead The requirement of a passport was established by a law establishing the Commissariat of Emigration in 1901. but probably about 1905. Robert F.

during. Beatrice visited the mausoleum of her beloved son Attilio. Santa Maria del Pianto and the adjacent Cimitero Monumentale. no manufacture. there were regulations and procedures that aided and protected emigrants before. 121 120 “Poggioreale” means “royal hill”. but lives only with day to day work with his own arms and hands . were combined to become the Poggioreale Cemetery. It was asked whether there was any “impediment” to his leaving. A Last Visit When their departure was certain. and after passage. He was entombed in a mausoleum which is believe to be in Poggioreale Cemetery. . a request to the major of Naples for a passport for foreign travel. nor an artist. but based upon legislation of the Italian and American governments and the experience of the Paolini family as will be described. The process was initiated by the submission of a Domanda di Passaporto per L’Estero . Certainly there were abuses. Inquiry by the Naples police department was then made to the administrative district for his home town of Popoli which was the city of Sulmona. The response was “ Nulla Osta ”–no impediment. natural son of Angiola Paolini is resident in Naples on 2 Via Università and that he is poor and doesn't own any kind of property nor does he contribute to the tax system and he doesn't do any kind of business activity (shop. The certificate is dated 7 Mar 1906.120 located on the east side of the city in an area also called Poggioreale121 . Poggioreale is more that a cemetery: it is a necropolis of large tombstones and mausoleums. Did the family experience some financial set back? Or did they just sell their business in anticipation of their emigration and move to 2 Via Università ? Was Alfredo incapacitated? Did he declare that he was poor and worked only as a laborer because he thought that only in this way could he obtain a passport and receive permission to leave? There are no answers to these questions. This statement is in direct contradiction to that which Beatrice described as to their profession and financial position. and there was a Villa Poggioreale begun in 1487. There was then issued a Certificato Municipale from the pretore (magistrate) of Naples in which he declared the following: Paolini Ildebrando.-88Descriptions of Italian emigration often give the impression of a rather unregulated and haphazard procedure–that emigrants were solely on their own and that they were at the mercy of miserly shipowners and uncaring bureaucrats.). with a specific inquiry as to whether he owed taxes. etc. Two earlier built cemeteries. nor shop. nor has a profession or trade.

-89- Attilio had died two years prior in 1904. and she probably had heard of the discomfort of that accommodation. His body had been embalmed so that it would be preserved. Cimitero Poggioreale The Paolini family embarked from Naples. Martino . 1906.Panorama da S. Italy on May 20. Would they be allowed to enter? Would Alfredo hold his temper? Then a two-day train ride to Chicago. Napoli . he had lived only about six months. hopefully into the home and comfort of her father and mother. She was pregnant. They would then be processed for admittance at a place called Ellis Island. she must have pondered the future. As she held her son. They would be in steerage. and the voyage would be about ten days.

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for $30 while first class cost $90. No photographs or written descriptions of its steerage were found. an open. $30 and $90 has the ‘purchasing power' of $738 and $2. was a single room accommodation.000 in 1901.com/ppowerus/ 123 124 125 .com/~knappdb/ships_M. was.000 in 1906. to 76. In one account.102 passengers: 333 first class. Steerage. the Paolini family had only to walk to the Port of Naples to embark. described his accommodations: 122 Behan. 124 The ship’s manifest does not use the terms of class but rather the terms “saloon. and 1.htm] Measuring Worth: Purchasing Power of Money in the United States from 1774 to 2000. One male passenger. respectively.ancestry. to 90. http://www. sailing in 1898. the long narrow compartment were divided into separate dormitories for single men.600 third class. Accounting for inflation to the present (2009). There may have been chairs or benches and tables. obviously. a modern ship of the time.23. and so what follows is only a suggestion of the conditions the Paolini family might have encountered and/or was typical for other immigrant passengers. for the most part. Most of the descriptions of the passage on ships and the processing of Ellis Island are based upon descriptions by other émigrés. it seems to have been quite elegant and spacious–at least above the waterline.-91Chapter 9 Emigration of the Paolini Family The Voyage Unlike most of the passengers that day.” The word ‘saloon’ seems to be an Americanization of the British term ‘salon. “Ellis Island Ship List.’ meaning elegant or fashionable apartment. It is quite likely that there was a common eating area with tables.165 in 1876. It must have been crowded.genealogy. A cabin. a passenger sailed from New York to Naples. built for the Hamburg-American Line in 1902.210.rootsweb. http://freepages. single women. booked in steerage. 122 Their ship was the SS (steamship) Moltke . 125 Based upon the photographs of the SS Moltke .123 The ship could accommodate 2. dormitory space in the lowest part of the ship. Flying under a flag of a country means that it operates under the maritime regulations and inspection of that country.” hosted by RootsWeb. and sailed under a German flag. Based upon several descriptions. and families. The price of a ticket varied according to the class. cabin and steerage passengers. the name derived from the place that housed the steering mechanism of sailing ships. affixed to the bulkhead by cables to prevent their shifting with the rolling of the ship. because the number of Neapolitan émigrés had grown in the past few years: from 3. 169 second class. Beatrice never complained about the conditions nor her treatment.measuringworth. p.

for surely below on the dock were friends who had come to see them off. Illinois (see image of manifest on next page). all running fore and aft in double banks. a battered tin plate and pannikin. was used to record the names and various personal information. The manifest also indicates that Don Francesco paid for the passage of all members of the Paolini family. This completes the emigrant's « kit. Rather than the immigration officials at Ellis Island. A thin iron rod is all that separates one sleeper from another. In the column entitled. tier upon tier. a fork. what relative or friend. Castaigne. the person recording the information was different from the émigré. In each bunk are placed « a donkey's breakfast (a straw mattress). “The Steerage of To-Day . 127 Before getting underway.126 a knife. in this case.gjenvick. German and Italian. a manifest of the ship’s Open Berths in Steerage passengers was completed through interviews with each passenger. Volume LV. and a spoon. or the misspelling of names. “Whether going to join a relative or friend. all passengers were inspected by the surgeon. This procedure was instituted by the shipping companies so as to avoid having an émigré rejected by the Immigration Service as the émigré would have to be returned to his/her home port at the company’s expense. H. form 1500B designed by the Immigration Service. Whitmarsh. the forms were changed to some degree. and if so. In the case of the Paolini’s passage. http://www. and it must have been one of the most heartbreaking points in the journey. it was the recording the names of émigrés by the ship’s personnel that most likely was the cause of change in name. and his name and complete address.A Personal Experience by H. Number 67. Pages 528-543. a blanket of the horse variety.” 1898 Century Magazine. see appendix A. Chicago.-92The remaining space is filled with iron bunks. The names of the Paolini family are listed on lines 22-28. Departure At this point. As additional regulations were instituted so as to improve conditions for passengers and improve the efficiency of the processing upon arrival. Phelps Whitmarsh with 13 Illustrations by A.” entered is the name Francesco Paolo Del Grand at 321 A [nothing more]. For a more thorough description and use of the manifest. Department of Commerce and Labor. Most likely.» which in former days had to be found by himself. Prior to casting off.com/Steerage/1898-SteerageConditions-APersonalExperience. row after row.html 127 . One such description is more than the heart can take: 126 A small pan or cup. Phelps. the vessel was ready to set sail.

steerage passengers approaching the wharf in New York Photo purchased from Norway-Heritage: Hands Across the Sea .com/Steerage/index.html Smoking Room Cupola and Main Saloon Deck life on the SS Moltke.-93SS Moltke Promenade Deck SS Moltke Photos courtesy of Gjenvick-Gjønvik Archives http://www.gjenvick.

These cabins are all lighted by electricity.html Steerage Dinning Room 128 None of these photographs are of the SS Moltke . In addition to a washstand the rooms are also provided with a mirror. towels. “Passengers are now allotted enclosed cabins with berths of modern type for two or four persons. while there are also a number of six-berthed rooms for the use of families.gjenvick. and the light can be switched on or off as required by the occupants. .com/Steerage/index.-94Steerage Accommodations 128 It is quite likely that the Paolini family were assigned these third class cabin accommodations in steerage as opposed to the open birth area that was assigned to single men. ” Cunard Lanconia I and Franconia I Rare 1912 Brochure Four-berth Cabin in Steerage Washroom for Steerage Passengers Italian Immigrants Aboard Ship Photos courtesy of Gjenvick-Gjønvik Archives http://www. and a plentiful supply of other toilet requisites.

suddenly calming herself. A hand soiled with all kinds of dirt -.ship dirt. November 1907. Chautauqua. “Urgency of Improved Steerage Conditions 1906. Pages 383-390+. to think of all the friends and familiar faces. she lifted her brave little face. Whitmarsh. Treatment The servicing of people en masse is a situation that can easily lead to indignities. original source: Durland. but the quality. Chautauqua Press. and waved us out of sight 129 To see Naples fading in the distance. ethnicity. I shall never forget the agonized expression that came over the younger one's face when the ship began to move. New York. The class distinction was quickly revealed to Phelps H. Add to this situation the human element of distinctions of class.” http://www. 130 Durland. Kellogg. 131 . kitchen dirt and human dirt -. and he invited me to “Step for'ard lively!” in a manner that left no doubt in my mind as to what part of the ship I belonged. probably a British gentleman. behavior can change. to think of the sights. The Chautauquan: The Magazine of System in Reading. Kellogg.gjenvick. both real and perceived.com/Steerage/1907-11-UrgencyOfImprovedSteerageConditions. she wept as though her heart would break. smiled through her tears. It is the picture of two women waving a last good-by to some loved one aboard. probably with the intent of writing a story for a magazine.pulled a great "cob" or biscuit out of a burlap sack and shoved it towards me. directing them to their accommodation.” I replied. “No. cafeteria-style but without choice. As he stepped aboard. providing amenities. sounds and smells of a vibrant city. etc. he was greeted pleasantly enough: “Second cabin. steerage. The procedures of loading people onto the ship. real or imagined.-95One picture of that day stands out more strongly than all the rest. middle-aged Italian in a filthy shirt. 130 Rather than being served at a table. Then. are fraught with potential errors in conduct that can disgruntle the most patient persons. He was traveling from Liverpool to New York to determine conditions in steerage. language. As one passenger explained: The first steward was a dirty. all these thoughts must have crossed Beatrice’s mind as the Moltke set forth from the Bay of Naples. It was not the food that were the subject of complaints. status (émigré versus citizen). steerage passengers passed in a line. Ibid . Volume 48. sir?” said the master-at-arms by the gangway. but the manner in which it was served. 131 129 Ibid. There is no complaint about the quantity of the food. and relationship (passenger versus crew). and the way that it was served was not fit for human beings. to wonder if she were doing the right thing.html . His polite tone changed. Hiding her head on her companion's shoulder.

Beatrice was pregnant with Amelia at the time that she was on the ship. today.which were of tin -and absolutely no other provision was made for this than a barrel of cold sea water ! Sometimes I tried to scrape the greasy macaroni off my plate with my finger nails.” “Ellis Island” http://sydaby. Ibid .-96To which he added: The great drawback was the way in which.133 On his return voyage. and she was permitted to come up and stay on the deck to get some fresh air. scrubbed paint-work. 135 Another reported: . “The Steerage of To-Day . sanded decks. 132 And The steerage is not provided with means for sitting down so usually the meals are eaten on the floor. http://www.html 137 . there were definite restrictions to where steerage passengers could wander.. though it is doubtful that they had to remain below deck the entire time. would be called sexual harassment. shippy. Column 2.” New York Times. Ibid . 2004. and we had to wash our own dishes -. one and all. apparently on some ships. Spotless. and the lack of adequate toilet facilities made it difficult to keep clean. 14 December 1909. There was little privacy.eget.htm Excerpted from Ellis Island: The Official Souvenir Guide.net/swe/ellis_island. 134 Of course seasickness was the most prevalent affliction to all passengers. but due to the location of steerage. 132 Ibid.136 It shouldn’t be surprising that there were complaints of crude behavior towards single woman–what. sea-sickness. it was slung at you. Whitmarsh. Sweet it was not. to quote one of my friends.. by B. Page 3. its chances of affecting these people were more likely as the rolling of the ship was magnified.the air in steerage became rank with the heavy odor of spoiled food. 133 134 135 136 “Women in Steerage Grossly Ill Used. Several times I was lucky enough to pick up a bit of newspaper somewhere for a dish cloth. reminiscent odor that hung about the steerages. he complained: There was no dining room at all provided. and unwashed bodies. and iron bunks could not hide the sour. Even the best efforts did not prove effective: To the credit of the ship.137 Lastly.com/Steerage/1909-WomenInSteerage-ConditionsCalledAppalling.gjenvick. The consequence made for a fetid atmosphere. it must be said that everything was clean. published by Aramark. Colin Hamblin.

Statue of Liberty (1900-1910) Since other ships may have recently discharged their steerage passengers.” http://www.” Beatrice looked up.138 As Ellis Island was surrounded by relatively shallow water. they joined the steerage passengers who were to be processed by the U. of June 2. Thus it is concluded that the Paolini family had to wait a day in port before being transported to Ellis Island. While there were reports of unhealthy and uncomfortable conditions for steerage passengers during the period of immigration. has the date of arrival of June 1 st. By the time it arrived. while above is a stamped date. one is often left with the impression that little or nothing was done to improve the situation nor aid the immigrant traveler. Adolfo. plus personal tales of wretchedness and abuse. One of the seamen climbed up and brought him down safely. Bureau of Immigration and the U. probably by the ship’s purser. and sure enough. if not. Public Health Service at Ellis Island where they were to undergo medical and legal inspection. if cleared.org/genealogy/ellis_island_presidential_arrivals.asp 138 . people began looking up and saying. before debarking.-97Declaring restrictions as to areas of the ship might inhibit adult steerage passengers ‘who would know their place. In the background is a hospital where ill passengers were treated.ellisisland.S. Arrival at the Port of New York The SS Moltke docked at the Port of New York on June 1. The handwritten entry. Immigrants walking from the barges to the main building.S. allow to disembark. possibly for several days. there was a little boy: her son. the passengers were discharged at the main dock. I did find evidence that the governments of both Italy and America did much in both regards (see appendix B: Italy's Commissariat of Emigration). As Beatrice was taking the air on deck.’ but children are usually unaware nor inhibited. probably by an immigration officer. The ship docked at either the Hudson or East River piers. the first and second class passengers had already been inspected on board and. “There’s a little boy way up there on the superstructure. and those requiring processing at Ellis Island were transported in a ferry or barge. 1906. “Presidential Arrivals Through the Port of New York. In my readings. a ship’s passengers may have had to wait.

On each line number of the manifest is a handwritten abbreviation of “SI” meaning Special Inquiry (see manifest). 23. worry and fear. uncertainty. The Great Hall was divided by steel bar fencing that created twenty-two aisles. List No. probably for a medical examination and then an appearance before a Board of Inquiry. Imagine the cacophony of sounds of perhaps a thousand people talking in a multitude of languages trying to communicate in the most earnest manner their answers to question. each passenger was affixed with a name tag that included the name of the ship. but for hours. the family was delayed for three days.History. Imagine having to wait in line–sometimes sitting but mostly standing. Beatrice’s father and family were in America and would be of limited assistance if they had to return. which was to determine whether or not the immigrant would be law-abiding and able to support himself/herself so as not likely to be a public charge (with the acronym LPC). senile disability & double cataracts. probably because the inspector believed that her family would take care of her. The doctor had noted that Angiola. Imagine the worry of your luggage being lost or stolen–not only your most valuable possessions but now your only possessions. At best. 139 “Ellis Island . Rather than being processed in the normal five hours. A doctor would perform a cursory inspection of each person. Sheet 213. As each batch of thirty-two immigrants entered the hall. Imagine being eyed suspiciously for having some contagious disease.” http://www. A separate listing entitled. This probably caused Alfredo much embarrassment. small children ran hither and yon. “Record of Aliens Held for Special Inquiry” indicates Alfredo’s referral. there was an inspector who interrogated the would-be immigrant regarding his legal standing and moral character.org/genealogy/ellis_island_history. the process took five hours. Beatrice’s tag stated: SS Moltke . 4ch mother and wf(Del Grade ( sic )) LPC” (See appendix A: Manifest–Special Inquiry Register). And then to fail to be admitted! It had to be a most stressful and exhausting experience. Quite likely they had disposed of their household goods and sold their business. His entry is listed as: “[age] 39 m(ale] 40 [entry] Paolini. The ship's manifest.ellisisland. and now it was in jeopardy. It was said that “doctors at Ellis Island soon became very adept at conducting these "six second physicals. mental defect or moral depravity. send them down the aisle to the desk of an inspector for consideration. they would have been shunted by ushers into the aisle corresponding to the manifest number or letter on their tag. that is. which had recorded the immigrant's name and his/her answers to twenty-nine questions. Ildebrando." 139 At the end of the aisle. while in the background babies cried. and sheet list number. They entered the Registry Room or Great Hall where the inspections took place. welfare. and for Beatrice. was used as the basis for the cross examination. Alfredo’s mother. was “cert.asp . and if they passed. this illness does not seemed to have denied her entry. and mothers screamed for their children to obey. the manifest sheet number or alphabetic letter. not just for minutes. Alfredo was suspected of having an illness or condition that prevented the family from proceeding to the legal inspector.-98Processing Through Ellis Island At some point in this process. They had staked their future and their fortune to come to America.” however.

jpg Eye Inspection Library of Congress Mental Test www.org http://www.ellisisland.old-picture.Ellis Island.org http://www.gov/elis/photosmultimedia/EllisIsland-Photos.com/ Great Hall www.nps.-99Ellis Island Immigrant Tag Main Registry Building on Ellis Island circa 1905 National Park Service www.org/photoalbums/Albu m1/14.nps.gov Immigrants Debarking from Ferry http://www.com/thereillyfamily/ellisi sl.Oocites.jpg Inspectors’ Desks National Park Service http://www.htm .oocities.

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-101Manifest Sheet of the SS Moltke showing Paolini Family Manifest with middle section cutout Left side of manifest showing names of Paolini family Blowup of right side of Paolini family .

“Record of Aliens Held for Special Inquiry.141 Ellis Island was known both as the ‘Island of Hope’ and the ‘Island of Tears’ depending upon whether or not a would-be immigrant was admitted. and 21" indicate the number of meals–breakfast.” http://www.cit. and the time of day (“3 05 "). examined for illnesses and deformities. and perhaps admitted to the 125-bed hospital. Explanation of annotations on manifests found in article entitled. and because they were admitted to the United States of America on June 5. and the initials of the recording secretary. they might have requested evidence that Beatrice could be supported.” 140 Hamblin. Their line number of the manifest were duly stamped “ADMITTED. lunch and dinner– had by Paolini family for which the steamship company would have been charged.jewishgen. although it is difficult to understand how a further inspection could have taken three days. Companies were charged by the Bureau of Immigration for delays and deportations as an incentive for applying standards meant to reduce the number of rejected immigrants. For Alfredo. asked embarrassing and demeaning questions.”). Obviously there was a happy ending as Alfredo was given a medical certification as noted: (“Dr.’ She was grateful for the food provided during their detention. op.000 émigrés were processed each day. Cert. 1906. the page number of the recording secretary/stenographer’s notebook. The next column indicates the name of the doctor (“English”) and the next three columns indicate the date of the hearing (“6/5") as June 5th . this was the ‘Island of Hope. .-102It is possible that the illness Alfredo suffered in Naples had lingering signs. 28. Perhaps a telegram was sent to Don Francesco requesting assurance that he would be responsible for the Paolini family. all by immigration authorities who were probably impatient and brusque given the enormity of their task. Hamlin. forced to wait in long queues. it had been a degrading process to be poked and prodded. It is possible that there were so many immigrants needing to be examined that they simply had to wait three days for Alfredo to be examined. Medical conditions could be a cause for rejection as it could incapacitate a person and thus “likely to be a public charge” (LPC). The final three columns for which there are entries “21. op.cit.142 To Beatrice and to the children. There is also the possibility that he was simply sick and needed three days to recover.140 If the Board of Special Inquiry suspected that the Paolini family would become a public charge should Alfredo be incapacitated or die.org/InfoFiles/Manifests/bsi/ 142 141 Approximately 5.

” http://www. that they lost Arturo in the crowd and confusion of boarding. p. and no one was there to meet them at the station when they did arrive. The travel time to Chicago was about eighteen hours. She had to shepherd four small boys.-103- Blowup of left side of Paolini family Special Inquiry Sheet listing Paolini family Blowup of right side of Paolini family On to Chicago To leave the island.143 Thus they did not arrive as scheduled. they found transportation with the Parmelee Transfer Service. “Railraod Speed: Notable Fast runs of Passenger Trains for Long Distances. One has to admire Beatrice for her fortitude and endurance during this journey of at least 17 days.ominousweather. there being no telephones at this time.. and then a train to Chicago. and a disgruntled husband while being four and a half months pregnant. and so they missed their train. It is not know whether it was at Ellis Island or at the train station. 242.html 143 . and there were only two trains per day.com/ChicagoRailCapital. Having no means of contacting Don Francesco on short notice. each railroad company had its own station. and not knowing how to reach his residence. Facts on File. “Chicago Passenger Stations. either Manhattan or New Jersey.” The World Almanac & Book of Facts . Quite probably they telegraphed Don Francesco in Chicago as to when they would arrive. Again Alfredo found himself in the demeaning and undignified position of sitting in the back of a baggage carriage and being paraded for all to see through the streets of Chicago. for in those days. a company that carried baggage by horse drawn carriage from one train station to another. as it was planned that he should meet them at the train station. they would have taken a ferry to the mainland. Inc. most probably the latter. a senile mother-in-law.

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coming to America for the first time.-105Chapter 10 Donato Del Grande I knew exactly where he was entombed.. . that had arrived at the Port of New York on June 8. The Undertaker's Report of Death for Danato Del Grante (sic) issued by the Bureau of Vital Statistics. his wife and other children born in Italy had immigrated in 1898. Department of Health. why had his supposed father taken him on a trip to Italy when he was only six years old? If he was immigrating. probably a relative. I had seen the vault with my own eyes. bearing Donato Del Grande. Francesco Paolo Del Grande. Del Grande. the Manilla . that is.. the last permanent address is given as “Aquila”–not Italy–while the town is. age 13. Italy and arrived at the Port of New York on October 24.” is entered: Utica. Camillo Di Giulio. and the one that arrived in 1908 as Donato#2. Soon thereafter. were childless and wanted a child.144 The only other evidence of Donato Del Grande is an entry on a manifest of the ship Regina d'Italia . and she included Dante. an infection of the lining of the heart chambers and heart valves. Strangely enough. Don Francesco had immigrated twelve years prior in 1896. I had no hypotheses that explained the immigration of this child. Was this Donato the son of Don Francesco and Gemma? I decided to label him Donato#1. I knew that Grazia Del Grande and her husband. from Popoli. On the other hand. born in 1887. how could he have been conceived and born in Italy as Don Francesco and Gemma were in America? I could only hypothesize that Donato was the son of someone else. In my initial phase of genealogical research. It states that he was four years of age. on the 7 th day of July 1903. She also reported an entry on a ship’s manifest.” In the last column of the second page. dated 21 August 1907 in which he stated: I. City of Chicago states. a NATURALIZED AND LOYAL CITIZEN OF THE UNITED STATES . 1909. 1908. 1909 of endocarditis. my genealogical researcher in L’Aquila. I then obtained a copy of Don Francesco’s passport application. My initial interpretation of his manifest was that Donato was immigrating. or perhaps the mother or family were too poor to keep him. under “Place of Birth. perhaps an Americanization of Donato. Perhaps he was the child of an unwed mother who wished to save him the embarrassment of being an illegitimate child. Donato Del Grande died on January 6. N. do hereby apply to the Department of State at Washington for a passport for myself and wife and my minor children as follows: minor child Donato Del Grande born at Popoli “Italy. they surely would have adopted Donato. Gemma Castricone. 1901. Under the heading of “whence alien came” is the name “Grazia Del Grande. Ungaro (Hugo) Tarquinio Del Grande. 145 144 He was actually six years old at the time of his voyage.145 Also listed on the manifest is Franc. my mother had listed the children of Don Francesco and Gemma. January 6. He rests in the same vault as Don Francesco in the little mausoleum that also contains Don Francesco’s wife. Italy reported the birth record of a Donato Del Grande. “Popoli. Illinois. She believe that Donato was about age twelve when he died. The mausoleum is in Mount Carmel Cemetery in Hillside.” who is known to be a sister of Don Francesco. If Donato was born in America. that embarked from Naples. age thirty-one.Y. as expected. and another son who predeceased his father.

Paolini. No civil record was found in Popoli nor in Utica. I considered the possibility that Donato was born in Chicago. seven of whom were still living. Julie A. and so I continued to hold my hypothesis that Donato was not the child of Don Francesco and Gemma. mainly the Registri dello stato civile 1809-1910 for Popoli. I received a call from the local Family History Center that the film had arrived. It is possible that if the child was born in Italy.” I was obviously somewhat upset and disappointed.” I obtained a list of churches in Utica and located them on a map of the city along with the residences of the Del Grande family in an attempt to determine their parish church which I concluded to be either St. Sincerely. it was baptized there as well.-106So rather than Utica. Best of all. but after a few weeks I thought. it is recorded that Gemma bore eleven children. I contacted each but neither had a record of a baptism for Donato Del Grande. I wrote to the parish priest in Popoli but “niente. The church had been demolished in the late 1950's in order to allow the expansion of the Illinois Medical Center. I searched the parish for death records and found that none existed from 1903 to 1930. I found no records of the Del Grande nor the Paolini in other films. Satzik Assistant Research Archivist Archdiocese of Chicago's Joseph Cardinal Bernardin Archives and Records Center I had hit the proverbial brick wall. both civil records and baptismal records in churches in Popoli. Don Francesco was stating that Donato was born at Popoli. Italy. these records would be written in English. and so I requested a search of their records for which I received the following response: Dear Mr. only to be told. I accounted for all the children save one. Italy. New York. only four or five years after the birth of Donato. but now I could examine the records myself and not ask the indulgence of church officials who had better things to do than look up records a hundred years old. “Why not? It’s only $5. I checked the baptism records for Holy Guardian Angeles from 1903 to 1905 and found nothing. If the Mormons were microfilming records of churches in Italy. At first I demurred as I had already checked this source through the Archdiocese. Mary of Mt. might they also have microfilmed records of Italian churches in America. and so I walked into the Center at about 8:00pm that evening. By this time in my genealogical research of the Del Grande and Paolini families.50” I ordered the film. . I was ordering microfilm of records from the Family History Library of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (Mormons). Anthony of Padua. I then began to search for birth records. “We’re closing early tonight. Indeed they had! I had intended to contact the churches in the Italian section of Chicago where the Del Grande and Paolini family had resided. I was especially hopeful that I would find a baptismal record at Holy Guardian Angels church in Chicago because my father was baptized at this church in 1908. This office recently received your email of April 5. but its records were held by the Archdiocese of Chicago. By my records of date of births and deaths [which was incorrect at the time]. but I started my search through the films. Carmel or St. From the 1910 census. I ordered the film for the church Our Lady of Pompeii and Notre Dame de Chicago. the final residence of the Del Grande. New York as stated on the manifest. Italy and in Utica. The catalogue also listed film for Holy Guardian Angels.

-107The records of Holy Guardian Angels had an index that was unusual but logical: alphabetical and then by year. I started with the year 1904 and found no entry for Donato, so I then began systematically going through each year. About 8:30pm, the staff and other patrons began to leave, but a new staff member had arrived. He was there to install new software on each of the computers, and it would take him quite a while. He said that I could stay until he left; and so I continued my search long past the normal closing hour of 9:00pm.. I found no entry in the index for Donato, and so I scanned through the individual, handwritten entries, usually five or six per page. Again, no result. I decided to abandon my effort, but since I had the film, I thought that I would look for the entry for my father, Attilio Paolini. I turned the crank of the microfilm to scroll forward. I reached the end, but the entries did not extend to 1908. Then I thought that I would look for the entry for my aunt Amelia who was born in 1906. I twirled the crank in reverse and stopped. Since there were no demarcations by year, I had to read an entry to determine the year for the entries in that area of the film: Not back far enough. Whirl, whirl! Another check: not far enough. Whirl, whirl! I picked an entry a random to determine the year. I read:

Entry for the Baptism of Donato Del Grande

I was stunned–transfixed. I starred at the record for at least a minute. I had found him, and yet I had difficulty believing it. All those hypotheses and systematic searches, and in the end, I found him by pure chance. I decided to make a copy of the image of the page, and so I had to switched the film to another machine. I’m sure I had a rather dazed look on my face. I was tremulous and I couldn’t think straight causing me to fumble in threading the film into the machine. The technician installing the software must have recognized my look. “Find something,” he asked. “Yes,” I replied, my voice somewhat shaky. “I’ve been searching for this child for over two years, and tonight I found him.” “He wanted to be found,” said the technician. I was overjoyed with my finding. I concluded that Donato had been born and baptized in Chicago, and so I put the matter to rest. About six months later, I started writing this history of the Del Grande and Paolini families, and I carefully noted the dates of marriages and relocations. Gilda was married in 1902, and Angiolina was married in 1903; and by newspaper accounts, Don Francesco had attended the weddings. It would have been a long trip back to Utica for those occasions. I had also read about baptisms: some denominations believe that infants should be baptized while others believe it should be delayed until the age of accountability. In reviewing the records of baptisms in the Registri dello Stato Civile for Popoli, I noted that there were intervals of several months and even years between birth and baptism. Lastly, in the beginning stage of my search for the birthplace of Donato, I had requested a search of the birth records of Cook County which included the city of Chicago: no record had been found. In short, I suspected that while he was baptized in Chicago, he was born in Utica. Now, at least, I had a date of birth on which to focus a search. The new date was two years earlier than the previously used date.

-108I requested a search by the Registrar of Vital Statistics of the city of Utica. Within a week, my hunch was confirmed. Donato was born January 22, 1902 in Utica, New York. It is likely that Don Francesco returned to Italy in order to accomplish some business transaction, possibly the sale of his house (and possibly his shop) as his family resided there for two years after his departure. It still is a mystery to me as to why Don Francesco would take his six year old son on a visit to Italy.

-109Chapter 11 The Early Years in Chicago "I have struck a city–a real city–and they call it Chicago...Having seen it, I urgently desire never to see it again. It is inhabited by savages." Rudyard Kipling, cc. 1900 Americanization of Italian Names At some point in their lifetime, most Italians adopted an “American sounding name.” Hereafter, I will use the name that my ancestors called themselves with the exception of Francesco Paolo Del Grande whom I will continue to call Don Francesco.
Italian Name American Name Del Grande Family Francesco Paolo Gemma Gilda Angiolina Ungaro Carlo Alberto Italia Arminda Donato Frank Gemma Gilda Angeline Hugo Albert Lillian Donato Paolini Family Ildebrando Alfredo Beatrice Armando Adolfo Arturo Aldo Attilio (I) Amelia Attilio (II) Donato Angiola Alfredo Beatrice Armando Adolph Arthur Aldo Attilio Emily Otto Donato Angelina Ottie (Aah-Tee) Bice (Bee-chay) Lily; Sister Wilma possibly Dante Chico Paolo Nickname

-110Italian Enclaves As in Utica, Italian immigrants had proceeded the Del Grande and Paolini families and had coalesced in some twenty146 neighborhoods, both in and around the city of Chicago. The largest of these enclaves was on the near west side147 relative to the downtown area and was called ‘Little Italy’ or ‘Taylor Street.’ This Italian section started on the west side of the South Branch of the Chicago River, and over time, it spread westward. The area was bounded by Harrison Street on the north and Roosevelt Road (12 th street) on the south, and eventually reached Ashland Avenue on the west. It was roughly coincident with the 19 th ward (see map) and had an Italian population of about 15,000 by the 1920s.148 For a description of the in and around the area, see appendix C: Ethnic Territories of the Near West Side. The Del Grande moved often as they did in Utica as shown in the following table:
Date Indicated on Document 26 Jan 1902

Address 247 W. Polk Street

Source of Data Baptismal record of Donato Del Grande Naturalization card of Francesco Paolo Del Grande Passport application of Francesco Paolo Del Grande Manifest of Regina d’Italia ; Francesco Paolo and Donato 1910 U.S. Census 149

26 Sep 1906

210 W. Taylor Street

21 Aug 1907

388 S. Halsted Street

24 Oct 1908

127* Vernon Park Place

22 Apr 1910 1910-1920

1114 Vernon Park Place

921 S. Wenonah Avenue, Oak 1920 U.S. Census Park, Illinois

*The streets of Chicago were renumbered in 1909. Thus the addresses of 127 and 1114 Vernon Park Place are for the same house.150, 151

146

“Italians,” Encyclopedia of Chicago. http://www.encyclopedia.chicagohistory.org/pages/658.html

During the 1920s, the Social Science Research Committee at the University of Chicago designated seventy-five areas of the city as communities based on common social characteristics, such as ethnicity, race, religion, and income. These community names and boundaries have not changed and thus do not reflect the characteristics of the population of the areas since that time. The community containing the Italian section was and is called the Near West Side.
148

147

Pero, Peter N., Images of America: Chicago Italians at Work , Arcadia Publishing, Chicago, 2009, p. 9.

Also listed at the same address are Oliver and Conado De Granditz (probably De Grandis which is a common surname in Popoli; also in the 1910 city directory are listed four Del Grande: Antonio, Conado, Frank and Olive, all with the occupation of tailor.
150

149

“Rationalization of Streets,” Encyclopedia of Chicago, http://www.encyclopedia.chicagohistory.org/pages/410052.html Plan of Re-Numbering City of Chicago: Table Showing New and Old House Numbers, August, 1909, p. 161.

151

New York. Stead. Oxford University Press. innocent of paint and blackened and soiled by time and close contact with the children of Italy. former ethnic group moved out. The The area was also called by the intersecting streets in the center of the Italian population: Halsted and Taylor or just Taylor Street.153 As residents became more prosperous. Oak Park had. and as one ethnic group moved into the area. 1893. Chicago. The garbage boxes along the broken wood sidewalks are filled with ashes and rotting vegetables and are seldom emptied.-111The Taylor Street area 152 was never exclusively Italian as indicated by the names on the census sheets. the danger. p. The Italians in Chicago: A Study in Ethnic Mobility . and the inconvenience of the streets. the older. Bari. a significant Italian population. and having spent most of their savings for their passage. Arcadia Publishing. the Near North Side was mainly settled by Sicilians while the Taylor Street area was settled mainly by Italians from the South: Naples. 2003. Consequently they resided in the neighborhoods that afforded the most inexpensive housing which was the most run-down and poorly maintained. Illinois. and Lucca. Dominic Lawrence. p. At the time. Basilicata. Abruzzo. '" 155 Taylor Street was described in a newspaper article of March 30. 9. The Making of America Series. These Italian neighborhoods attracted compaesani . 1970. p. people from the same village or at least the same region of Italy. 1902-1933. Chicago's Italians: Immigrants. that is. Its population was quite mobile. This western movement is illustrated by the relocations of the Del Grande [and the Paolini family] within the Near North Side. Nelli. Heaps of trash. Humbert. both within the area and to outlying areas. They worked long hours and under poor conditions for small wages. they moved further west. and old fruit are alongside the garbage boxes already overflowing. The nursery was part of the Hull House Settlement. a town adjacent to the western border of Chicago. http://memory. 16. and still has.154 Having been poor in Italy. [Photographs from the Chicago Daily News. the Italian immigrants were extremely poor. under the headline. Calabria. Messina. Ethnics. who lived in the city for five months (until March 1894).loc. Ewing Street was later named West Cabrini Street and ran between Gilpin Place and Polk Street according to a website that pictures a sculpture of a child and flowers on the exterior of the Mary Crane Day Nursery building. was not a city beautiful: "According to English journalist William T. 22. ‘The first impression which a stranger receives on arriving in Chicago is that of the dirt. For example.gov/cgi-bin/query/S?ammem/cdn:@field%28SUBJ+@od1%28782+Ewing+Street++Chica go. "Foul Ewing Street:156 Italian Quarter that Invites Cholera and Other Diseases:” The street is lined with irregular rows of dingy frame houses. Chicago in general. they had to take the toughest and meanest jobs. located at 782 Ewing Street.+Ill+++%29%29 156 155 . culminating in their final settlement in Oak Park. Salerno. though a few residents of the older group remained. Americans . the Marche. Palermo. As most were unskilled and illiterate workers. Candeloro. 154 153 152 Ibid. rags.

1887. 13." Annals . Italians in Chicago. Each floor (including the basement) generally contained two apartments of four rooms each. and Ninth Special Report . for example. Humbert.. O’Leary’s barn at 137 DeKoven was in the southeastern section of the 19 th ward and probably about six blocks from the house at 127/1114 Vernon Park Place. high rents for inferior housing. U. burned abandon buildings. and only wooden sidewalks in some places. poorly ventilated and dangerously overcrowded.. pp. and extremely poor social relationships. Commissioner of Labor. 1880-1930 . p. an area containing a large Italian element. The great Chicago Fire of 1871 supposedly had started in Mrs. It had occurred not less than thirty-five years prior. in turn. 99-103 as found in Nelli. and frequently lodgers or boarders as well who shared kitchen and bedroom facilities. Italians in Chicago. and so Alfredo thought they had come to an uncivilized place. “In an Italian Patch. p. Alfredo certainly thought so as he expressed his disgust. it is simply an imported habit from Southern Italy.and two-room apartments. 1880-1930 . as found in Nelli. many of their olive skinned faces showing sallow and wan beneath the covering of dirt. although the district also provided many one. July 16. State. 160 Indeed. 157 Ibid. Structures facing the street (most of them brick and three stories high) were unsoundly constructed. Owners and managers utilized all available space for living purposes.S. pp. Taylor Street could only be viewed as somewhat disheveled and desolate. Every doorstep is well alive with children and babies dressed in rags and grime. Inhabitants often ate and slept in shifts. and there were still vacant lots.” Chicago Herald . ascribing the refuse and crudely built dwellings to ethnic characteristics. The Italians in Chicago. Overall.-112dwelling houses and big tenement buildings that line Ewing Street are occupied by thousands of Italians. The Chicago Herald stated. Polk. inadequately lighted. that “it is not abject poverty which causes such nasty and cheap living. Newberry. housed one or more families. Seventh Special Report . and Twelfth streets. 22.Some of the dark complexioned men sit around tables through the day time hours and gamble at cards or dice with huge mugs of beer beside them. The Commissioner reported serious overcrowding in tenements.. p. 159 In the same vein: A survey by the Commissioner of Labor in 1892-93 studied conditions in the district bounded by Halsted. 160 159 158 .” 158 There is little doubt that Italian immigrants lived in over-crowded housing with poor sanitation: The Near West Side contained some of the worst housing in the city. barely adequate sanitary conditions.” 157 It was not uncommon for Chicago newspapers to exaggerate and use plaintive and demeaning language in describing the Italian neighborhoods. unpaved streets. "The Housing Problem in Chicago. a Social and economic Study (1897) as found in Nelli. Each apartment. 33-34. 11. Taylor Street must not have been a pleasant place at this period. The Italians in Chicago . Jane Addams. XX (July. 1902).

I was told that the streets were paved with gold.% 20Chicago/ Near 12th & Jefferson Street circa 1906 www. third.com Courtesy of Taylor Street Archives www.findtarget.com . I was expected to pave them!” Parmelee Transfer truck F. Parmalee & Co.org Courtesy of Taylor Street Archives www. the streets weren’t paved. I learned three things: One.coachbuilt. http://www.taylorstreetarchives. W hen I arrived.cdlib.taylorstreetarchives. second.com/bui/p/parmelee/parmele e.com /search/Little% 20I taly. the streets weren’t paved with gold.-113Chicago Quotation from an Italian immigrant upon reflection of his immigration to America: ”When I was coming to this country.publishing.htm http://reference.

-114- .

Halsted Street 247 W. Lexington St. IL 60607 McLaren Elementary School 1500 Flournoy Street Chicago. IL 60607 210 W.) Chicago. Illinois 60607 Hull House 800 South Halsted Street in 1856 Columbus Hospital Extension (now St. now St. Polk Street 5232 W.-11519th Ward (circa 1915) encompassing ‘Little Italy’Addresses for Map of 19 th Ward In Chicago. even numbered addresses for North/South streets is on the West side of the street and for West/East streets it's on the South side of the street. now at 811 S. Polk Street 127/1114 Vernon Park Place (renumbered in Holy Guardian Angel 1909) 178 Forquer Street (renumbered 717 in 1909) Paolini Addresses 127/1114 Vernon Park Place 635 S. Cabrini Hospital) Entrance formerly at 1220 Gilpin Place. Taylor Street (312) 243-7400 388 (now 923) S. IL 60607 US . Notre Dame de Chicago 1335 West Harrison Street Del Grande Addresses Chicago. Altgeld Street Institutions The Shrine of Our Lady of Pompeii 1224 Macalister Place (now W. Cabrini) 1423 Plum (Flournoy) Street 1739 W. Lytle Street Chicago. Centre (Racine) Avenue 1209 Gilpin Place (formerly Ewing.

html 162 . and so they could expend less money by sharing an apartment with other families. that is. Emily was born four and a half months later in October. they couldn’t afford housing for only one family. the daily commute to jobs dictated one’s relocation.org/pages/1401. Taylor Street bordered the factories along the South Branch of the Chicago River where most of the Taylor Street residents had employment. buying food. At the turn of the century. first surface street cars and then elevated trains. less crowded and with better accommodations. they need to live near their job in order to reduce the time and cost of travel. Thus there were five adults and eight children in the household.161 At this time. Housing and Family Expansion When the Paolini family arrived in 1906. http://encyclopedia. a common complaint of immigrants by those who are well-established and able to afford ample accommodations. Attilio (Otto) Paolini. Beatrice. and Aldo. seem not to have a clue as to why immigrants in general. improved and expanded mass transportation facilities. they wanted to be among residents with whom they could communicate. The Paolini family consisted of Alfredo. etc. the Del Grande family consisted of Don Francesco. lived as they did. the opposite was true. and who could help them deal with the normal transactions of living: finding a job. finding a place to stay. speak Italian. as they prospered and/or followed employment opportunities. Second. the area was a slum. not just of the Del Grande and Paolini families. including some reformers with advanced college degrees. While mobility reflected movement from an undesirable neighborhood and housing to one that was more pleasant. First. they moved in with the Del Grande family. 162 161 Personal conversations with the author’s father. In the decades after 1900. Reformers and social critics often despaired as they saw no improvement. for Italians weren’t the only residents of the area. clothing and furniture. made it possible for the lower income class to live beyond walking distance.chicagohistory. Angelina. While the Italian community of Taylor Street seemed stable. There was a constant relocation of residents both within the area and outward to other areas while new Italian immigrants took their place. they relocated to better housing which explains the high rate of mobility. Hugo. Gemma. which was true of the area but not true of the people who. but of the most single persons and families. The city adopted its first zoning ordinance in 1923. or more negatively stated. Albert and Lily. Arthur. it was not a violation of a zoning ordinance: the city didn’t have one. The Encyclopedia of Chicago: Zoning . Third. However. When they had learned how to find their own way in the city. not improving. The enclave served as a staging area in which the immigrants became acclimated and “Americanized” while accumulating resources to improve their situation. What is starling is that most newspaper reports and social commentators.-116By most definitions and characteristics. Adolph. No doubt that it was crowded. Armando. finding a doctor. Immigrants were not unaware of the housing conditions under which they lived. left the area. and they had accumulated sufficient resources.

as twins. Their births were recorded as happening at the same time. the clerk mentioned his “twin sister. and he had to obtain a copy of his birth certificate at city hall. His actual working conditions are unknown. and he probably worked in a factory doing routine. who was use to having his own place and being the head of the household in Naples. Beatrice was about five feet tall." 163 No more than 5' 6". 164 . Candeloro. and so inquired of his mother as to what might have happened. he curtly remarked. piecemeal tasks rather than making an entire garment. One writer described the length of the workday as an explanation for the creation of the union: "Since their take-home earnings in season for a 56. Thirty-two years later in 1941. Now he resided in the house of his father-inlaw. When he brought home his first earnings and dropped the money on the table. "In Italy. It was surmised that she forgot to register Emily’s birth in 1906. His birth certificate states the family’s address was 127 Vernon Park Place. she would be cooking dinner and constantly looking out the window in order to see him coming so as to assess whether or not he was in a terrible mood–which he usually was. I worked. and so when she went to the registrar’s office to report the birth of Otto. p." Beatrice retorted. "I earned this much in Italy. unlike today when most births take place in a hospital. that is. She explained that. The mid-wife was suppose to register the birth. at the outset of World War II.-117Two years later in 1908. Thus another member was added to the household. particularly Alfredo.” He knew full well that he didn’t have one. One wonders whether or not such crowded conditions imposed a stress on the adults. Chicago's Italians . She said that each day. it's not surprising that workers began organizing the Garment Workers and the Amalgamated Clothing Workers with a strike in 1910. there was no union of garment workers. my father had to register for the draft. 13. when it was time for him to come home. but before 1910. and your mother worked to earn this much money. In the process of making the request for the document. but all of her children were born late and of abnormally large size. which is the same house as the Del Grande family. Otto was over twelve pounds at delivery!163 Such large-baby births are recognized now as a sign of a pre-diabetic condition which Beatrice did develop in her later years. he often quipped that he had his growth spurt in the womb. she also reported the birth of Emily but was unable to make clear–probably not having great command of the English language–the fact that Emily had been born two years prior. in those days the birth of a child took place in the home and delivered by a mid-wife. and thus the garment manufacturers were able to extort their employees. He was also the proprietor of his own business and a craftsman at his trade. Otto Paolini was born." 164 Alfredo went to work each day while Beatrice stayed home with the children. you worked.to 72-hour (6 day) week averaged around $3.

and/or realized that he was a danger to his own family. His daughter Emily found him ‘sleeping'. they had their eighth child. 1910. he took his own life. no further action was taken by the authorities. It should have been a happy time with an optimistic outlook. There were fifteen households at this address and so it must have been a tenement building. Ildebrando Alfredo Paolini died September 4. yet he never mentioned how his father died. Maria Ines Del Grande as recorded in the 1910 census.166 since then renamed Racine Avenue. The story was revealed by my Aunt Emily and confirmed by the coroner’s report. She explained that her husband had suffered a stroke. of course. http://www. Centre Avenue. Apparently the Chicago police were called. For how long is not known. Scott A. saying that Beatrice had been working on her sister’s (Maria Ines Del Grande) wedding dress at the time.-118By the time of the 1910 census. This is the same address as that of Antonio Sirimarco and his wife. and his temperament didn't help his condition. Roll: T624_261. but he asked his mother for it. The exact date of the interview with the Paolini family was April 27. even paranoid. One report is that he did not harm her. His straight-razor had been withheld from him. and that he did stab her with the scissors and hurt her quite badly. The next incident was probably decisive for Alfredo: he came at Beatrice with scissors. a boy named Donato. 1910.jazzagechicago. Illinois. Family Losses Beatrice said that Alfredo suffered severe headaches and high blood pressure. Illinois . No other details of the incident are known except that Alfredo was confined to an institution for a period of time. Cook. and she acceded. and Beatrice was summoned. Page: 1B. He slit his own throat. Enumeration District: 1579.167 In December 1909. Consequently. and he returned home. but failed to stay and watch him. My father regaled me with the many stories of his childhood throughout his life. Newman. she had him released. Census Place: Chicago Ward 19. He hated being confined.. Emily later recalled that he warmly embraced her not long before he took his life as he always showed great affection for her. and not of sound mind. Image: 273. With her great forbearance. The stroke left him with a slight limp and mentally impaired at times. that he was ill.” she announced to the family. to the extent that he went to the Italian consulate in Chicago and told the officials that he wanted to return to Italy but that his wife and mother were preventing him. 1910 at the age of 44. [Map of] Central Chicago and the Loop District: Chicago. 1907-1917. "He won't wake up. and appealed to Beatrice to have him released to her care.165 the Paolini family had moved to their own apartment at 635 S. but Carol Jean Sirimarco recalls that her Aunt Ann (Angelina Sirimarco) related the incident. copyright 2006. but it was not to be.com/ 167 166 165 . Whether he despaired of his situation.

" because he had committed suicide. State of Illinois. came to County Hospital. Further. 55848. He was interred with ecclesiastical rites in the consecrated ground of Mount Carmel Cemetery. upon the body of day of September 19 10 VERDICT: The said Alfredo Paolini County of Cook. on October 21. 1910. cut in his throat with a razor on Sept.-119Inquest No. Beatrice appealed the initial ruling and convinced the church authorities that Alfredo was ill and not responsible for his actions. At the time of his death. while the deceased was in a deranged state of mind. Alfredo’s life and death reminds us of the stanza in a poem of A. which condemns the act as a most atrocious crime and. From shock & hemorrage ( sic ) due to external violence.htm . May peace be upon him. 3rd 1910 in house 635 Centre Ave. A month later. XL. In the Cook City of Chicago County of Cook. Cassian in P. on the 8 th Alfredo Paolini now lying dead at County Morgue in said City of Chicago his death on the 4th day of Sept. 573) except in case that the act was committed when they were of unsound mind or 168 unless they showed signs of repentance before death occurred. Donato Paolini. self inflicted. A. Christian burial is to be refused to suicides (this prohibition is as old as the fourth century.. in hatred of the sin and to arouse the horror of its children. Housman which might serve as his epitaph: And how am I to face the odds Of man's bedevilment and God's? I. State of Illinois.L. The policy of the Catholic Church was and is well established: That suicide is unlawful is the teaching of Holy Scripture and of the Church. Illinois. a Roman Catholic cemetery located in the Chicago suburb of Hillside. a stranger and afraid In a world I never made. 168 New Advent: The Catholic Encyclopedia.E. from the evidence offered at Cook County M orgue in the suicidal.org/cathen/14326b. the local Catholic church at first refused to have a mass for him nor allow him to be buried in "sacred ground. and so they finally relented. 1910. died at the age of nine months.D. denies the suicide Christian burial. http://www.newadvent. their youngest son. cf.

A lesser woman would have despaired and possibly surrendered.$6.-120The Courage of Beatrice The tragedy of these two events must have been crushing for the family. Alfredo may have been peevish and self-centered. She said to herself. "I have $6. and.$1. but he was the head of the household who provided an income. For Beatrice.00 for each child." . especially the boys. At age thirty-one. a sense of family and stability. and I'll never ask anyone for a dollar again.00 here . Beatrice sat alone at her kitchen table and took the money from her purse -. Beatrice Paolini had no income. by his mere presence. The loss of a second child would have aroused the memory of the lost of the first Attilio to double the pain. it must have been that and more. six children ranging in ages from two to thirteen.00 was all she had in the world. These were two losses that could leave a person numb and wanting to withdraw from the world. Now her children had no father–no one to serve as a male role model and to protect and guide them. and an aging and somewhat senile mother-in-law. no job.

but I thought it worth pursuing. E-mail from Susana Vazquez. age. Illinois in order to visit the grave site of the Paolini family. Ado. MJF Books. Susana. we discovered ‘Baby Zickgraff. but I had not found one for the Paolini family for 1910 and decided to do without it. About a year prior to this discovery. 2004. Stories in Stone: A Field Guide to Cemetery Symbolism and Iconography. and location. though I never heard that she did. nationality. New York. August 10. Then I realized the sequence of dates: the year was 1910. sent: Monday. Perhaps he was in the daily care of Beatrice since she had young children–Emily and Otto–and perhaps Gemma was working outside the home. albeit with transcription errors: Alfreds.” I wondered– thinking he was Donato Del Grande. I used the fourteen-day free subscription from Ancestry.169 Researching the computerized files of the cemetery. or at least forgot about this younger brother. and so I renewed my search. 170 169 . and Aldo. Adolph. Donat. Beatrice. My father always claimed that he was the baby of the family.’ born of Emily Paolini and Charles Zickgraff and who had lived only ten minutes according to the burial records. Donato Del Grande died in 1909! Obviously it wasn’t him. Obviously the person who had done the transcription was not familiar with Italian names. There was only one inescapable conclusion: Donato had died at a very early age. My mind reeled. my mother and I had traveled to Mount Carmel Cemetery in Hillside. I recalled reading the symbolism of the urn as a grave marker. the burial notation is explained: Keister. I read the entry for his age: “5/12". but to discover a ‘new’ uncle was astonishing. Amelia. and I realized that I did not have the family’s census sheet for the year 1910. 2009 9:46 AM. and so he must not have known. Indeed the Paolini family was listed. About the fiftieth name listed was ‘Alfreds Pauline. Marked by a large granite tombstone are buried: Alfredo. 137.’ I didn’t immediately recognize ‘Alfreds’ as a possible transliteration of ‘Alfredo’. Now I was a fully-paid subscriber.com retrieves the records that are ‘close’ matches. I had been finding new cousins which I knew must have existed. The census was taken on April 27. [I entered corrections to each of the names so that any future searches will retrieve the census record. 1910. p. Queen of Heaven & Mount Carmel Cemetery.170 In E-mail correspondence with the cemetery’s administrative staff. I wanted to identify the addresses at which the Paolini family resided. In the initial stage of my genealogical research. On each side of the tombstone is an urn (see photograph). After entering known search criteria. so Donato must have been born in December 1909 or January 1910. Ayyda (Angiola or Angelina). Ancestry. Amando. Bessie (for Beatrice).] “Why was Donato listed. Douglas.-121Chapter 12 The Discovery of Donato Paolini In writing this chapter. such as name. Atthtis. Arthur.com to search and retrieve census data for various ancestors. Did I have a ‘new’ uncle? In the past six months. and so I examined the image of the census sheet.

It is likely that this tragedy was never mentioned by his brothers and sister for fear of upsetting their mother. Within ten minutes. and a little less than two years old when he died. The Certificate and Record of Death states that Donato Paolini. Lot S18. My father was only about fifteen months old when Donato was born. 2010 4:35 PM Subject: RE: Donato Paolini Mr. There was no mention of a second child in that previous correspondence. WT2 means West Top of grave 2. Thank You.-122- Mount Carmel Cemetery: Grave WT2. 1910 of chronic gastroenteritis. Section 23. died October 21. ***** . Block 7.org] Sent: Thursday. it is not unexpected that he would not remember his younger brother if he was even aware of him.cathcemchgo. I received the following reply: From: Susan Vazquez [mailto:SVazquez@queen. 1910. November 18. Paolini. I now sent an E-mail of inquiry to the Mount Carmel with the specific name of Donato Paolini. born January 18. I am showing a Donato Parolina ( sic ) interred on this lot he was buried on October 24. Usually when it dealt with babies they listed which part of the grave the baby was buried in since they didn’t occupy the whole grave. I am guessing it is the baby you are inquiring about just an incorrect last name. 1910 at the age of 9 months.

and so she would run up the backstairs–or possibly it was the outside fire escape–and a fellow worker would open the door for her. especially since the welfare case worker was pocketing part of the money. and a part-owner of the firm. 172 . later canonized. May 10 to 15. 171 Francesa Saverio Cabrini. Beatrice could not afford to lose any money. She suggested to Beatrice that she place all the children in the orphanage of the Church. aka. She probably had to work about ten hours each weekday and a half-day on Saturday. She consulted her parents who advised her to put the children in an orphanage.172 but her day started much earlier: getting the children dressed for school. 51. etc. Illinois. she was sometimes a little late. In this period of time. p. either from the city or the county. that is. preparing food.171 who had started an orphanage and apparently wanted to fill it. She was urged to do the same by Mother Cabrini. the Del Grande. Massachusettes. Goldstein.” Documentary History of the Amalgamated Clothing Workers of America. would stand at the elevator to identify any late workers and dock their pay. Not surprisingly.-123Chapter 13 Work and Play Beatrice Becomes Head of the Family After Alfredo's death. the workday was considerably longer than today.. Angelina provided justification to keep the children at home as Beatrice could claim that they were supervised by an adult. one Mr. Though her mother-in-law was not completely reliable. much to the puzzlement of Mr. Beatrice did receive some welfare funds for the care of the children. 1918-1920: Proceedings of the Fourth Biennial Convention of the Amalgamated Clothing Workers of America . but Beatrice refused as she wanted to keep the family together. The work area was on an upper floor. and parceling out chores. She then took a streetcar in order to commute to her job. It was very little. she sent Emily to live with her parents. they could still be penalized. the establishment of the 54-hour week. Sister Francesca Cabrini It is not certain but it is probable that Beatrice began working in a garment factory as a seamstress. Goldstein. Even though the workers were probably paid piecework. Her main concern was the care of her children as she needed to work and earn money to support the family.. Frances Xavier Cabrini. “. 1920. held in Boston. She would quickly assume her position at her sewing machine as though she had been there for quite some time. and the payment for overtime work at the rate of time and a half. sewing parts of garments using a treadle sewing machine. (1850-1917). who had moved to Oak Park. Believing that her daughter needed more protection.

He showed it to his mother. he bought a coat for what he thought was a terrific bargain: $17. This industry was a major commercial enterprise of the time. he or she would generally be made foreman or forelady. p. and Marx strike. By the end of the first decade of the 20 th century. and she actually worked with Mrs. She sewed the buttonholes of the coats. socialistic ideas and its political at Hart. Schaffner & Marx movement were demanding improved working conditions Photo courtesy of Carolyn Faber at for workers. www. Ultimately.nypl. that is. A most famous strike occurred from September 22." The Garment Industry and Unionization The Del Grande and Paolini were typical of the major social patterns and movements of their time. and they also became the largest ethnic group in the garment industry with the possible exception of Jews.. The firm prospered and made Society Brand Clothes. 174 . for instance. and the National Garment Workers Union were formed here.org look at the lining and then said: "$17. 173 versus: After the passage of the 10-hour law. the garment industry was Chicago's third largest employer and the single largest employer of women. and the workers did not dare complain. Soon Chicago became a leading center for www. sometimes called the Hart.CarolynFaber. Ibid. the company at which 173 Ibid. Decker. a more skilled job of the clothing trade. the Women's Trade Union League (organized in Chicago at Hull-House). At some point. a supervisor of the seamstresses. Schaffner. Italians were the largest majority of immigrants during this period.net/blog/ organizing the garment workers. 1910 to February 18. 174 She obviously knew her trade. Beatrice went to work for Alfred Decker & Cohn.-124Later on. a manufacturer of high quality men's suits. Garment Factory Works As in Naples. the Amalgamated Garments Workers. When my father was a young man. and asked. It was a small firm. Beatrice became a forelady. 24. There are two contrasting views of foremen/foreladies: If a worker was too good to lose. but yet showed a tendency to rebellion and toward arousing the discontent of the others. foremen in several shops managed to evade the law by requiring the workers to work before and after punching the time clock. turned over the skirt to Library. "How much do think I paid for this Courtesy of The New York Public coat?" Beatrice examined the coat a moment. 1911.

-125the strike was mainly directed. It was a massive strike that was started and led by women of diverse positions in the garment industry, and it demonstrated their ability to organize across ethnic lines in an industry notorious for low wages and bad conditions. This Chicago strike marked the start of what became the Amalgamated Clothing Workers of America of which Beatrice was an active member. Such activity was very courageous as she and her family were very dependent on her job. She did her part on the picket line. Once, she said, the police harassed them and put them in the paddy wagon, but then just drove around the block and let them out rather than putting them in jail. The results of the strike of 1910 were mixed, but its primary feature was the establishment of “an arbitration committee of three to be chosen, for the purpose of considering adjusting all other grievances, and their rulings were to be binding.”175 This seemingly Garment Workers Strike (1910) small concession was de facto recognition of the union which was the foundation for an ongoing means of negotiating and resolving differences such as: arbitration of grievances; union representatives at grievance hearings; reduction in working hours; standards of pay for positions; limitations in overtime; union preference of workers.176 All these rules and standards of behavior between employee and employer seem almost “self-event” but in reviewing the conditions of the time, one can appreciate the legacy of those who fought for worker rights. While Beatrice and her fellow-workers were successful in organizing the union, working conditions were never pleasant, but job opportunities were available and wages increased. With the income she made as forelady, the family lived quite comfortably, even to extent that they were able to buy a car when my father was in high school. She even had a little money to invest in the stock market, as so many people did during this prosperous period. She invested in the utility stockholding company promoted by Samuel Insull. The holding company collapsed during the Great Depression, wiping out the investment of the 600,000 shareholders. This was a scandal that was in the newspapers for years, and Insull fled to Greece and then Turkey to escape prosecution. He was extradited back to the United States by Turkey to face federal prosecution on mail fraud and antitrust charges. He was found not guilty on all counts. In any event, Beatrice, along with the thousands of others, lost all they put into this stock. 177

175

Ibid. p. 44. Ibid, pp. 69-70.

176

Samuel Insull (1859–1938) was an Anglo-American innovator and investor based in Chicago who was prominent in the development of Edison Electric. He invented the holding company which he controlled, owning shares in several utilities and railroads. Ironically for Beatrice, he was also responsible also for the building of the Chicago Civic Opera House in 1929. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Samuel_Insull

177

-126The Paolini on Gilpin Place About 1912, the Paolini family moved to 1209 Gilpin Place. My father said that it was across the street from the Columbus Extension Hospital,178 also known as the Mother Cabrini Hospital 179 at 1220 Gilpin place.180 It was here that my father had his famous tricycle incident: This incident happened when I was living on Gilpin Place. My godfather and godmother presented me with a tricycle, and after learning to ride it, I would race up and down the sidewalk. I noticed that the older boys were riding their bicycles on the street and occasionally go over the sidewalk curb with the greatest of ease. I had been instructed never to ride my tricycle in the street, but since in those days there were few automobiles, it didn't seem to me that there was any danger. My mother was watching me from our front room window, but because I rode with such speed (It is amazing how a child of that age could travel so fast!), it was impossible for her to come outside to warn me not to try to ride the tricycle over the curb. I decided to follow the older boys with their bicycles and ride over the curb. On down the street, and at full speed, I hit the curb. You can imagine the result. I landed head first over the tricycle and received two large black eyes and a large lump on my forehead. My mother's warning was too late. I still can hear her shouting, "No! No!" It's an experience I'll never forget.

The Passing of Angelina Paolini It was at this period of time–about 1913-- that Angelina Paolini died. For some years she had been in poor health and ate very little, so she was just "skin and bones." She died peacefully in her sleep. It had been Adolph's habit to take a cup of tea with some rum in it to his grandmother in her bed each morning, and when he went in that morning, he thought she was still sleeping, but then realized she had passed away. My father recalls the events that followed: I don't remember very much about my grandmother's funeral, but I do remember certain parts of it. I noticed one morning that all the family was up unusually early and talking very quietly and walking around in a confused fashion, so I got up and went to see what this was all about. When I entered my grandmother's bedroom, I thought she was asleep but was told that she was dead.

Not to be confused with Columbus Hospital, also founded by Mother Cabrini and her Missionary Sisters of the Sacred Heart in 1905 and located at 2520 N. Lakeview Avenue. Later known as Mother Cabrini Memorial Hospital, and still later, probably after 1946 when she was canonized, as St. Cabrini Hospital.
180 179

178

Later renamed Cabrini Street.

-127Several features of the funeral I do remember. I remember the horse-drawn black buggies (at that time few automobiles were used for funerals) to transport the mourners and my family to the church service. The next thing I remember was the railroad station. The Mount Carmel Cemetery was about 30 miles away and at that time places of such a long distance were reached by railroad. Lastly, I remember the casket on a caisson was drawn by horses to the grave. See appendix E: Italian Funeral Customs.

The Del Grande in Oak Park It is thought that the Del Grande family moved to Oak Park, Illinois after 1910 (they are listed at 1114 Vernon Park Place, Chicago in the 1910 census), and rented a second floor flat of a two-flat building from friends. My father remembers that the owners of the building gave parties, and at one party, he saw an elderly man with a very long white beard speaking Italian–something he had not seen before. The only men he had seen before wearing beards were Jewish. The Don Francesco had a house built at 921 South Wenonah Avenue at the cost of $3,000 according to the building permit. It was a large, two-story residence–and it had to be large because it housed Don Francesco, Gemma, Hugo, Lily, Albert and his wife Mary Laframenta, their two daughters, Ethel and Bernice, and Anthony Sirimarco and his wife Mary Ines Del Grande, and Emily Paolini. Emily reported that Aunt Mary always called her "the orfana " in a very condescending manner. My father always thought it was Albert's Mary who was 921 S. Wenonah Avene, Oak Park, Illinois insulting to his sister, and consequently was rather cold to her through the years. About 1983, when Emily and my father were recalling their childhood, Emily declared, "Oh, no, Albert's Mary was very good to me–after all I babysat for her. It was Mary Sirimarco, (Beatrice's own sister) who was so mean." After seventy years, the record was set straight. The Sirimaro family then built their own home next door at 919 S. Wenonah. Their first daughter was Angelina Yolanda who was delivered by a midwife and was stillborn. Anthony was naturally very upset and said any further children of theirs would be born in the hospital. Their son "Bobby" was born in 1920, and Tony was a doting father. His wife Mary said that when he went to work each day, he would say to her, "Don't make Bobby cry." Later they had a second daughter and named her Angelina as well.

-128The Paolini Moving to Plum Street A short time after the passing of Angelina Paolini, the family moved to 1423 Plum Street [later renamed Flournoy], which was not very far from Gilpin Street (see map). It was only a block long, bounded by Laflin Street on the west and by Loomis Street on the east. My father noticed the many fruit trees in the neighborhood–probably plum trees–and was told that the area was once an orchard. Most of the neighborhood residents were of Italian origin, but there were also Irish. At one time, the area was mostly occupied by persons of French descent, and there were a few French families still residing in the neighborhood. The parish church was named Notre Dame, and for years the homily was given in French [the mass at that time was given in Latin]. My father said that he preferred to attend the French church after his terrible experiences at Our Lady of Pompeii.181 So what were these terrible experiences?

Our Lady of Pompeii versus Notre Dame I assume that attendance at Our Lady of Pompeii was my father’s first school experience, and that he was in kindergarten or first grade; he had not learned the masculine art of bladder control. He had to use the lavatory during class one day, and he asked the teacher–a nun–to be excused. Apparently suspecting some mischievous intent, the nun refused permission. Fortunately, my father did not have an ‘accident.’ On the next occasion, after again being refused, he did have an ‘accident.’ When Beatrice gathered the laundry that night, she noticed his soiled underclothing and asked him what had happened. My father told the truth which apparently dismayed and displeased Beatrice. She went to the school and confronted the nun who did apologize. I think it safe to say that my father was not overly studious nor particularly concerned with the mysteries of religion and the doctrine of the Catholic Church. He was certainly not one to spend time memorizing prayers and the answers to questions of the Catholic catechism. Yet he was expected to attend a catechism class that followed the nine o’clock mass, specifically designated for attendance by children, every Sunday morning. The nuns were insistent, and children were expected to obey. And the nuns were watchful! My father conceived a scheme for avoiding catechism class, and it worked for a while. When all adults and children were leaving after mass, he would walk closely with a couple–a man and woman--so that the nuns would think they were his parents. But after several Sundays, one of the nuns noticed that his parents were a different couple than previously. His escapades were ended, but it also ended his regular attendance. He was prohibited from attending mass and catechism classes, so later he wasn’t able to make his First Communion.

Two of the more significant landmarks of Little Italy were the Catholic churches of Our Lady of Pompeii and Holy Guardian Angel founded by Mother Cabrini. Holy Guardian Angel was the first Italian congregation in Chicago. The parish was established in 1898, and the church was built on Arthington Street in 1899. Due to the burgeoning population, a second major Italian church, Our Lady of Pompeii, was founded in 1911. The Holy Guardian Angel Church was razed for the construction of the expressway system. The Our Lady of Pompeii Church is now a the Shrine of Our Lady of Pompeii.

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which may have been true from her point of view. The difference in approach to discipline between Our Lady of Pompeii and Notre Dame de Chicago is exemplified by an incident reported by my father. My father said that the pain was extreme. He couldn’t believe that this nun. A loud “thwack” and then searing pain was sensed by my father as the nun had struck them with a large ruler. Beatrice agreed even though it meant losing a full grade. we respected him and behaved properly as we grew older. who he thought was supposed to be a saintly person. the prayer was very short. my friends and I decided to attend mass at the French church instead. He therefore attended John McLaren. he begged his mother to cease attending this Catholic school and attend a public school. but that he was more shocked than physically hurt. a young priest noticed that we were placing candles at the base of the statue without placing money in the coin box. What a difference from Our Lady of Pompeii Church! Because of this incident. this cold and refreshing water satisfied our thirst. my father raised his hand as did another boy. an elementary school only a block away from his new home on Plum Street. This water was a blessing (no pun intended) because. after playing in hot weather. I remember one of the rituals before drinking was to kneel down in front of the waterfall and say a prayer. . My father said that he kept this incident to himself and told no one until many years later.-129At school the following Monday morning. He gathered us and explained the purpose of the ritual. Being so unhappy at Our Lady of Pompeii. and because of his kindness. Being honest and trusting. The nun told them to go to the cloak room and wait for her. she instructed them to kneel down and extend their hands upward. Naturally. In the basement of the Notre Dame was a grotto with a cascade of holy water. When she arrived in the cloak room. He was understanding and kind. We failed to notice that these people were also placing coins in a box by the candles. it was the procedure for the nun to ask those who had missed Sunday mass to raise their hand. Later. The boys noticed people praying at the base of a saint’s statue and then placing a lighted candle in front of the statue. would do such a cruel thing. An additional attraction was that most of the kids on his street attended John McLaren. My father thought that the nun was going to say a little prayer for them or perform a rite that would absolve them of their sin.

but this didn’t seem to be the case. Each day. After he wrestled me to the ground. I met Chuchu. a German version: Otto . He gave her the name of his brother. it was only a block long. tops. The batter would then swing and try to hit the peg while the peg was in the air. or if it struck the stick. then the batter would count the number of lengths of stick from the goal and where the peg had landed. As often the case. One day while playing. he would immediately wrestle me and pin me to the ground. usually on a spot on the sidewalk or in any clear area. Whoever reached 200 points first would be the winner. and also made from a broomstick. but my mother insisted on me wearing shorts. ‘Arthur. I would open my door slightly and look carefully up and down the street to see if I could spot him. and because there were few cars in those days. The other part is the stick or bat. when he first caught sight of me. about six to eight inches long. But if the retriever failed to hit the stick or come within one length of the stick. My father made many friends. and we enjoyed each others company. and was able to appreciate their individual talents.’ When asked by Arthur why he used his name. he was Ottie . The exception happened on my first day at John McLaren School. he would play with me. Because Plum street was not a through street. The other boys wore knickers and black stockings. The retriever would throw the peg toward the goal where the batter had placed the stick upright. I tried to avoid this morning ritual. My mother accompanied me on the first day at school. If the peg was thrown and landed within the length of the stick. When the teacher met us. This was a useless effort because sooner or later the inevitable happened. it was safe to play in the street. At first I thought he disliked me. However. It made me feel like a sissy. but to no avail. that is. I rebelled. By using the stick/bat when striking the peg at one of its ends. but he didn’t like the name and so he used an American. The bat could be about 24 to 30 inches long. the peg would bounce up into the air. He never caused any injury but it made me feel so helpless. to his family and friends. the retriever would win the point and become the next batter. My mother had dressed me in a new white outfit. and a game called “peg and stick. who was about my age. there was an initiation ritual: After we moved to Plum Street. Among the activities and games my father mentioned were roller skating.” He described it as follows: A peg is made from a piece of broomstick. or perhaps more accurately. and she also commented on my white outfit.-130Life on Plum Street for Ottie My father was given the Italian name of Attilio . he hurt himself. she complimented my mother on having such a nice boy. my father replied that he didn’t like his. The peg is tapered at each end like a pencil when sharpened at each end. so when I came out to play. His brother Arthur accompanied him to Columbus Extension Hospital where he was treated by Mother Cabrini. riding bicycles. and she instructed me to behave and to keep clean. . A goal is marked. His opponents would place themselves in the open area and try to retrieve it. Chuchu really took a great delight in this ritual.

-131Taylor Street Mother Cabrini Hospital (circa 1930) Notre Dame de Chicago (built 1887) Columbus statue in Arrigo Park (2010) (statue made for Columbia Exposition 1893) Otto Paolini in front of 1423 Plum Street (circa 1973) Our Lady of Pompeii (Erected in 1923-1924 ) Flickr user hedgehog3457 .

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for instance. and iron it. remembering my mother’s admonition to behave and keep clean. she hit the ceiling. and occasionally he would come over and talk about the good old days. He was very modest and never showed any conceit. but he came close. and when I turned. a role he played in twelve motion pictures. He won fifty-two US National Championships and set sixty-seven world records. He was very athletic and very active. quite a feat for a boy of that age. He became a professional ballplayer. We always followed his career and admired him. he swam from the south end of Oak Street Beach to Belmont Harbor. there was Chuchu waiting anxiously to confront me. This personal trait may have stemmed from the fact that all members of the family were tailors at one time. work at getting it dried as soon as possible. winning five Olympic gold medals and one bronze medal. etc. and we all respected his knowledge of the subjects of history. Almost immediately I felt someone yank my collar. though he never made it to the big leagues. He dressed for the occasion. I can particularly identify with this situation as there have been instances in the past where there might be at least six clean shirts in the closet. 182 . and Johnny Bear. or maybe even not washed. Tripoli was the great swimmer. he had pushed me down in a dirty puddle of water. He was late to school one morning. Tripoli. and it is obvious from his description that he appreciated each in their own way: Our bunch was small at first: Rocky. but he was a not a bully. but Weissmuller is by far the best known.-133At the first recess. but before I knew it. he became the sixth actor to portray Tarzan in films. Johnny Bear never forgot his old gang. Johnny Weissmuller (1904 . You mean you didn’t have the shirt you wanted to wear. there was the teacher who was supervising the playground. my father developed a group of friends on Plum Street. in which case he would wash it. We all admired him as this was about the time that Johnny Weissmuller182 was making his name at Oak Street Beach where he was a lifeguard. Johnny Bear was the best athlete of all of us–a good baseball player. When he was only about twelve years old. I seemed to enjoy all sports and adapted so that I wasn’t left behind. His character's distinctive. My mother told me of an incident described by my father. mathematics. and gave the excuse that he had to iron a shirt that morning before coming to school.” My mother commented: “I’m sure she was right.1984) was an Austro-Hungarian-born American swimmer and actor. I nailed him. he skipped a couple of grades in grammar school. Dozens of other actors have also played Tarzan. She not only kept the clothes washed and ironed. and therefore all were able to make their clothes and were conscious of fashion.” As time passed. she became very upset and instructed me to tell my mother that she was not in charge of the schoolyard at recess. This infuriated me so much that I jumped up and with a great charge. Chuchu. As for myself. This trait was in evidence in my father’s childhood and continued to adulthood. Each one of us had a certain ability and talent. ululating Tarzan yell is still often used in films. Chuchu was the strong boy of the bunch. but Dad wanted the one that was not ironed. Rocky. She gave me a severe lecture. I warned him not to start anything. He was one of the world's best swimmers in the 1920s. My father was always quite conscious of his appearance. was a brilliant boy. When he gave this excuse to the teacher. but I was never exceptional at any one sport. and down he went with me on top of him. When my classroom teacher saw the mess. After his swimming career. she made many of them. “There was never a day when you didn’t have a clean shirt to wear to school. she was very sympathetic–“You ironed your own shirt?” Very touching! When Beatrice heard him tell this story one day.

Rocky's father. We made our own kites as there were none to be purchased. Beatrice would pause. We would then place our caps on the upper branches and then let go the branches which would catapult our caps into the air. the salesman finally relented: "Okay. For a brief history. As each point in his argument was being made. then at it's conclusion. Mr. there was a house owned by an absentee landlord. You follow a certain. not only watered his tree faithfully. We played a little baseball although we were still too young to play any organized baseball. while Mr. and one day. Halfway out the door. What I didn’t realize is that I couldn’t have talked to Rocky anyway: he didn’t have a phone! Shopping with Mom Apparently Italian immigrants continued their native custom of negotiating the price of a product rather accepting that which was shown or initially stated. We played tops and marbles. I proceeded to lift the receiver and immediately heard the operator ask. My father recalled that as a boy his mother would take him shopping. she pulled my father to the door. and therefore no one cared for the newly planted tree in front of this house. Justice or the Lack Thereof I have mentioned previously that Plum Street was lined with beautiful trees. “Number please. when I was alone. Pacenti's home. I observed members of my family using the phone. Technologically Challenged The telephone was a wonder in my early years. Much of the play took place in the street as automobiles were not prevalent as today. “1423. You would think that treatment of this sort would damage the tree. Pacenti. and the sale consummated. and was looked upon as a leader as they respected me and followed my suggestions. In fact.-134I was able to organize the group. latter named Arrigo Park in 1974.” but I was so confused that I hung up the receiver. You win! How much?" Finally an acceptable price was quoted. . and the city removed them and planted new young saplings. We kids would play on this property and would reach up and grab hold of the top branches and bend the trunk. Pacenti's tree which received love and care looked sickly and grew very little. The quote not being acceptable. and we flew kites. okay. Unfortunately after a few years. It just so happened that across from Mr. and much to the consternation of the neighbors. lady. The operator said again. I remember when the telephone was installed in our home. We played a lot of games. and we never seemed to be bored. After finding a suitable pair. “Number please. situations of this sort happen to many of us in our lifetime. most of these trees became diseased. The salesman argued that the price was reasonable for the shoes of such high quality. Each home owner had the responsibility of caring for the tree in front of his/her property. There are many games we played. see appendix D: Arrigo Park. In those days. proper procedure very carefully while another person is careless and ignores all the rules and ends up with better results than you do. but on the contrary. Ironically. and remembered one instance in which Beatrice was shopping for a new pair of shoes for him. and I thought she wanted the house number of his street address. most of the baseball was played in Vernon Park. she grabbed my father's hand and started for the door. this tree became the fastest growing and largest of the trees. but commonly called Peanut Park by my father and his friends then as it is today. she inquired of the price. but built a guard around the tree trunk and carefully watched and tended the tree. and we seemed to enjoy each others company and friendship. and at very little expense and equipment.” I answered. we entertained ourselves.” I didn’t know there was such a thing as a telephone number. I decided to try to phone my friend Rocky.

put it in a glass and fill the glass with milk. but the boys explained what they had done. and scarcely known to us in the inner city. and then take it home. and he said.the same size as the golf ball. I would throw the top downward and just before the top reached the ground. My brothers talked it over and decided to do something about it. because I had told them of this project. and put the glass on the bathroom window sill. I was so proud of my accomplishments that I decided to show my mother. that morning when I woke up and discovered this real golf ball. I was elated and started yelling and shouting. She immediately warned me not to spin the top inside the house. At first they told me to go away. and in place of my tar ball. they seemed amused and told me I could have some tar. How to Make a Golf Ball Another thing I can remember is the golf ball incident. They knew that later on. put the ball of tar into a glass which I filled with milk as I had been instructed. I would pull the string sharply upward so that the top would land on the palm of my hand. "Why don't you make your own?" I said." My mother was quite amazed as she knew it was impossible. My mother didn't want them to hurt my feelings.-135Life’s Mirror One of the sports that I enjoyed a great deal and became quite skillful was the spinning of tops. . Golf was not really popular at that time. some of the older boys were playing with a golf ball. Of course. I ran over to the workers and asked for some tar. I could perform several tricks. but she lectured me severely–a lesson I learned the hard way. I was in the living room when I called my mother to come and see my trick. instead of the string making the top spin. you can buy one. She thought it was a wonderful gesture on their part. I asked one of the boys where I could get one. My brother Art noticed this glass of milk on the window sill and asked. She never did hit me. I was very confident of my skill as I had always been successful in performing this trick. but when I told them I wanted to make a golf ball. every morning the first thing I did was to rush into the bathroom to see if my ball of tar had been transformed into a golf ball. This I didn't know until later on. Once the top was spinning in my palm. After a week or so.it did turn into a golf ball. "Well. they put this nice new golf ball. I shaped it into a ball and dashed home. After winding the string around the top. the string slipped from the top. look. However. -. "What the heck is this?" My other brothers knew. I became very discouraged and my brothers seemed to sense it. They went and purchased a golf ball. I would realize it was a big joke. "Where could I buy it?" None of the boys knew where to purchase one. I can still see the expression on my mother’s face. They all laughed when I told them that this ball of tar would turn into a golf ball. and she told them to stop laughing. and I was amazed by this little white ball that could bounce so high. They stopped making fun of me as they realized that sooner or later I would find out that this was an idiotic thing to do. and after a few days you would have a nice white golf ball. and top shot straight forward and struck a large mirror which shattered. He suggested that I go over there and get a ball of black tar -. It was the first time I had seen a golf ball. but one of them said. it just happened that down the street they were repairing a roof and the workers were using black tar. I learned to spin tops without the top landing on the ground." I said. "Look. while playing in the street. "make my own? How do you do that?" Well. this time. I disobeyed her instruction and proceeded to spin the top. The boys were having a lot of fun with it. I dove underneath the couch because I feared that she would strike me. Well. One day.

-136A Close Call One of the often stated platitudes of football is that it is a game of inches, by which it is meant that the difference between success and failure is quite close. It has been my experience that the same is true of death: it is only a few inches away, though we hardly notice it. Adolph found some small bullets, and the boys tried to explode them by striking them with a hammer. One of the bullets finally did explode, and struck Arthur in the leg. In my father’s telling of this story in his reminisces, he does not specifically identify who struck the bullet that hit Arthur, but Arthur’s daughter, Carol Jean Paolini, says that she was told it was my father. I believe that deed was too painful and embarrassing for him to admit. Arthur did not heed Shakespeare’s advice that discretion was the better part of valor: he often took chances. Once he was playing leapfrog over the hitching posts, and, being of small stature, failed to clear. He fell on his arm and dislocated it. Later, he bought a motorcycle for which he had to run along side to start and then leap forward in order to mount; in so doing, he again once broke an arm. In both cases of the dislocated arm and bullet wound, Arthur was taken to Columbus Extension Hospital at which Mother Cabrini was the head official. Beatrice was again confronted by Mother Cabrini who strongly suggested that the boys be sent to the orphanage; but again Beatrice refused.

Saintly As Beatrice was pressured to place all the children in an orphanage, she had to be quite strong to resist In any article about Mother Cabrini, she is always described as a saint who answered God’s call to aid the poor in the most loving and kindly manner. From my mother’s conversations with Beatrice, one gains a different impression, that she practiced the type of charity that assumed that she knew best. When my father had his tonsils removed, and it came time for him to be discharged from the hospital, Beatrice had to get an authorization slip signed by Mother Cabrini. Talking to another nun, Beatrice waited The Daily Catholic ranked Frances Xavier patiently though she could understand that they were just Cabrini the 45th of the top 100 Catholics of having an idle conversation in Italian. Finally, Beatrice the century, and is considered the interjected, “Mother, my son is very tired. Could you sign "Patroness of Immigrants" as Pope Pius XII this paper?” Mother Cabrini just waved her aside, and in a declared on November 13, 1950 when he very annoyed tone said, "Don't interrupt!" established her feast day for the Church in The Church and Italian Immigrants The local church had been the a mainstay of the villages and towns in Italy, and so the Italian immigrants in America supported the construction of a church for their ‘village’ in the city. The notion of campanilismo –that the boundary of one’s home or neighborhood is that which is within earshot of the church's bell– included the festivals and church ceremonies and were instituted in America as well.
the United States. Pius XII had canonized Saint Frances Xavier four years earlier on June 7, 1946. Daily Catholic , October 8-10, 1999 vol. 10, no. 192. I’m not sure that Beatrice would have ranked her that high.

-137Holy Guardian Angel ( Sant'Angelo Custode ) was the first Italian congregation in Chicago, established in 1898, and the church was built on Forquer (later Arthington) Street in 1899. 183 When the population grew to such an extent that an additional church was needed, Our Lady of Pompeii was built on Macallister (later Lexington) Street in 1911. Both these churches were assisted in their foundation by the Scalabrini Fathers.184 As indicated above, Notre Dame de Chicago was also in the area, and though built by Frenchspeaking immigrants in 1887, it also served the Italian community. See map for locations. These were ‘national’ churches meaning they were established to serve a national/ethnic population; as such, the sermons and confessions were spoken in the national/ethnic language. On the other hand, while Italians had a strong allegiance to their parish, they were suspicious and often held anti-clerical attitudes toward the Catholic Church and the papacy due to the latter’s support of the feudalistic and oppressive regimes over centuries in Italy, plus opposition to the unification and creation of the Italian state. This adverse attitude changed over time, and by the 1930s, allegiance to the Church was quite was strong. Beatrice did not quickly forgive and forget the Church’s initial denial of the mass and burial in sacred ground of her husband Alfredo. She said that she ceased attending church until the baptism of her granddaughter, Carla Zickgraff, in 1937–twenty-seven years later. Still, she had maintained her religious views and belief in the need for religious instruction of her children as they were sent to Catholic schools. The Catholic Church was one of five ethnic institutions that served the Italian community initially, that is, for those who had immigrated: • the padrone : persons who assisted Italian nationals in immigrating, securing housing, find a job, etc. while charging a fee or taking a percentage of earnings; Italian ‘banks,’ which may or may not have been incorporated and legally constituted but lent money; mutual aid societies and fraternal organizations: while sometimes offering a variety of services, it was primarily constituted to provide for a decent burial or temporary financial support due to illness or injury; Italian-language newspapers, e.g., L’Italia, La Tribuna Italiana Transatlantica, La Parola dei Socialisti, La Fiaccola ; the Catholic Church

As native-born and next-generation Italian-Americans left the Italian enclave and became more familiar with American institutions–American newspapers, banks, insurance companies, and trade unions–they forsook their ethnic counterparts save that of the Catholic Church. The parish was part of a larger institution that had operated in their native land, in the Italian enclave, and, starting in the 1920's, it was now operating in non-Italian neighborhoods of Chicago and its suburbs. It operated in much the same manner, that is, the liturgy of the mass was in Latin and the rituals and vestments were similar or identical to those in their Italian neighborhood. The Catholic Church had shown enough flexibility to meet their needs

Churches listed in the 1900 Chicago Directory (also called "The Lakeside City Directory"), http://genealogytrails.com/ill/cook/churches.html
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183

An order founded by John Baptist Scalabrini (1839-1905), bishop of Piacenza, Italy.

-138for which there was no strictly ‘American’ equivalent with which it competed as did the other Italian institutions that withered and died. School Attendance–or the Lack Thereof Being sent to school did not necessarily mean attendance. The four boys–Armando, Adolph, Arthur and Aldo– were often truant from school, and so at some indeterminate point in time, but probably around 1914, they were sent to St. Mary Training School for Boys,185 a Catholic orphanage in Des Plaines, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago. Arthur mentioned years later that they really learned a great deal while at the school, but they missed their home and often ran away in order to return home.186 They may also have been motivated to work because it gave them a sense of accomplishment and a sense of honor in contributing to the family and helping their mother. Although Beatrice preferred to have them continue their education, she finally acceded to their wishes, and my father believed that they were all hired at his mother’s place of employment. In the 1920 census, Beatrice, Adolph, Arthur, Aldo, and Emily list their occupation as tailor; Otto was still in school at age eleven, and Armando was overseas. Beatrice made most of her children’s clothes though she didn’t always have to make new outfits as the boys grew older. As one grew too large for one shirt or pants, the next in line took possession. As she made these clothes, she taught her children the family craft of tailoring.

Social Life The Italian communities of Chicago formed numerous voluntary associations: mutual benefit associations, parish clubs, school organizations, marching bands, settlement house clubs, and even a Protestant vacation Bible schools was established on the Near West Side to complement the social network of the extended family of the Italian community. 187

Still in existence, it is now called Maryville Academy. The experience of the Paolini brothers is again representative of the socio-political policies and movement of the times. By 1890, there were twelve orphanages in Chicago, but reformers such as Jane Addams were already attacking them as places that warehoused children in unhealthy, overcrowded buildings. Some reformers believed that children should remain in their home if available while still others contended that orphanages were needed but should be in a rural setting as they presumed such a setting had been instrumental in the development of the American character and culture. Thus several orphanages of the inner city moved to spacious suburban campuses including The Catholic Boys Asylum in the Bridgeport neighborhood moved to Des Plaines and became St. Mary's Training School for Boys. See appendix F: St. Mary Training School for Boys. No record of attendance was found in response to a request for Armando, Adolph, Arthur and Aldo on November 24, 2010. Candeloro, Dominic, "Chicago's Italians: A Survey of the Ethnic Factor, 1850-1990, chapter 8 in Ethnic Chicago: A Multicultural Portrait by Melvin G. Holli and Peter d'Alroy Jones, editors, Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co. Grand Rapids, Michigan, 1995, p. 239.
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-139No doubt there was an extensive informal social network woven throughout the Italian sections of Chicago. Often these relationships were based upon places of origin in Italy, so that Abruzzese, Campanians, Pugliese, etc. often congregated in the same neighborhood. Relationships were also formed through fraternal, mutual aid, and political organizations such as the Association of Pugliesi in America , Società di Unione e Fratellanza ,188 and the Order Sons of Italy . From the persons identified, the friends of the Del Grande and Paolini families seemed to have been persons and families operating small businesses. Throughout the years of troubles and hard work, Beatrice managed to have good times and enjoy life. In all the pictures of her, she is very well dressed and all the family wore nice clothes and had excellent food. When my father was a small child, his mother would often take him to parties with friends in the neighborhood. One family, named De Leone, he described as quite distinguished, the father being addressed as Don Carlo and his wife as Donna Rafaela, which are titles of respect reserved for the educated class. My father recalled a little incident that embarrassed him and his mother: These gatherings of our friends at the De Leone home were quite frequent, and of course we were invited to be there at a certain time. My mother usually had so many chores at home that she would occasionally be late. In one case she sent me on ahead, and when I arrived, they inquired where my mother was. I replied that she would arrive shortly, and that she had to put on her sottana and dress. They all laughed, and when my mother arrived, they greeted her with, “Oh Donna Beatrice, we see that you have put on your sottana and dress as Ottie told us.” They laughed again. But my mother gave me a rather stern look, so I knew that I had said something improper. The sottana , which is an Italian word, is a slip or petticoat–an undergarment, and then I understood that I shouldn’t have mentioned such a thing. My father remembered the fine dinners at the De Leone home. Mrs. De Leone was a gourmet cook, and she enjoyed having dinner guests. Even if she was short of money and really couldn’t afford to give a big dinner party, she would pawn some belonging to raise enough money for a party. On the passage to America, Beatrice met the Vivianno family, headed by two brothers who started making pasta in their basement and were so successful, they grew into the largest manufacturers of pasta in Chicago, calling their company the Chicago Macaroni Company.

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“Italians,” Encyclopedia of Chicago. http://www.encyclopedia.chicagohistory.org/pages/658.html

191 190 189 .” When parties were given by these people. kidnaping. Other close friends of the Del Grande’s were the Agnini brothers. It was a generic name of innumerable small groups of criminals. Typical Black Hand tactics involved sending a letter to a victim threatening bodily harm.S.genealogy. She would serve an Italian gourmet dinner. hence the name. The only arguments might be about an opera performance. http://www. there was good music and plenty of wonderful food. where with four of his brothers. This operation of extortion and murder ceased due to the maturing of the Italian populace who sought remedy from the police and Federal government. The Black Hand was not a centrally organized criminal operation with blood-oaths and roots in Italy as was the Sicilian Mafia . Auditorium Theater The biography of Salvatore Viviano states that “In 1910 he removed to Chicago. Illinois.” http://genforum. a criminal organization whose roots can be traced back to the Kingdom of Naples as early as the 1750s.. Beatrice always managed to attend the opera. The letter demanded a specified amount of money to be delivered to a specific place. They were engaged in the manufacture of costume jewelry. and Oresto played the piano. no matter how difficult life became. World encyclopedia of Organized Crime . Usually the big gatherings were held at the home of Rafaella De Leone.191 and he got us to enjoy it long before it became popular all over the country for many years. he opened another macaroni factory. Perhaps the most significant factor in its demise was Prohibition effected on January 16. My father remembers: “. Postal Service as the notes to would-be victims were sent through the mail. 1993. Now I hardly ever hear it. performances of the Chicago Civic Opera and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra were held at the Auditorium Theater.190 Beatrice said that a woman from the Black Hand lived with the Vivianno family as a potential threat to their children and to generally keep an eye on them.. arson.com/pa/allegheny/messages/3352. Rimpianto Serenata (Regret Serenade) was written by Enrico Toselli in 1900 when he was only 17 years of age.delcamp. and with discussions of literature and opera. Until 1929. and they were also musicians and singers. 50 East Congress Parkway. one day Oresto came dashing over to our house to play a new song on our piano which had just arrived from Italy. It was called Rimpianto .html Nash. or murder. It was decorated with threatening symbols like a smoking gun or hangman's noose and signed with a hand imprinted in black ink. 1920: the criminal saw a new and more lucrative source of revenue. the guests would sing–mostly Neapolitan songs and also opera. Actri Agnini sang small roles in opera. Da Capo Press.-140A downside to the success for the Viviano family 189 was that the they were extorted by La Mano Nera (The Black Hand). the latter intervening through the power of the U. and after the dinner.php?f=12&t=46939&start=0 .us/viewtopic. Jay Robert.

The old doctor took his son's suggestion. my grandfather would tell tales. After the son had treated several patients." and then asked his son if he had removed it. mostly of his experiences in Italy. and fisherman said. or if they thought they would be scolded for not looking after me. while my brothers were outside playing. When by brothers came in and saw me lying on the floor. He proceeded to remove the scale and in a few days the hand healed. Thanksgiving and Christmas. now we'll have to buy our own fish!” When he told some amusing story. he had been treating him for a long time. and I staggered and wavered. One day his son. except the fisherman's hand. at my grandfather's house. He turned around to my other brothers and said. The son said. but since no harm came of this. a fisherman with a bandaged hand came in. we all had a good laugh. My mother was flabbergasted to hear this. and I again fell down. especially the punch lines. Many years later. when we were telling humorous stories.the little punk is drunk!" They tried to get me up. One day. my father wrote: We spent most holidays. Fourth of July. I joined in the laughter although I really didn't understand the stories. I remember Aldo lifting me up and turning me over. The door seemed to wobble from side to side. I saw some peaches in a bowl on the table. W hen the father returned from his vacation and asked his son if everything went well. "W ell. W hen the young doctor removed the bandage. I looked up at him with a dazed expression and grinned. "Why -. I wanted to get away from them. He would then fill the glass with wine and let the peach absorb some of the wine. I noticed on several occasions that my grandfather would peel a peach and slice it into small pieces and put them in a large glass. My grandfather sat at the head of the table and after we had finished the main course. at a family gathering. they were alarmed. My grandmother. My brothers enjoyed this great comedy. came to visit him. You can imagine the results. with the help of my aunts. "Yes. and I thought it would be a good idea to fix these peaches as my grandfather did. I don't know whether they were protecting me. "Yes. The son suggested that the father take a vacation and that he would take care of his patients while he was away. I laughed just to be part of this joyful family group. . they did relate this to my mother. who was also a doctor. bringing a large kettle of fish that he gave to the doctor. They never told my mother of this incident. would prepare a huge and delicious dinner. He would then eat it and give one or two pieces to some of us children. so I grabbed the kitchen door to go outside. "Yes. everyone would laugh. I sort of enjoyed that." This puzzled the young doctor for he could not believe his father had not noticed the fish scale that was causing the infection. There were always bowls of nuts dates. at home. figs and fruit on the table.” The old doctor sighed. thinking I was ill. I stood on a chair to reach the bottle of wine which was on a high shelf. They thought my antics were hilarious. The son said “Of course. including my mother. he noticed the hand was slightly swollen and that there was a fish scale embedded underneath the skin.-141Visiting Relatives Recollecting his visits to his relatives. I poured the wine over the sliced peaches and ate and drank the whole thing. he had noticed it. I became very groggy and fell asleep on the kitchen floor. The doctor asked him if his father had been treating him. There was a doctor who practiced his profession in a small fishing village in Italy. Hadn’t he noticed the scale underneath his skin?” The father said. and I was alone.

I know that my father in later life realized the support and sacrifice of his mother and his brothers. I think of the time and effort she had to expend in order to feed and clothe her children. this was the best time of his life as he so often said. caring of each other and caring of their family. arduous. The boys seemed to have been well-behaved. and probably lonely task of supporting her family: working long hours at a tedious job in harsh conditions under autocratic and niggardly management. I believe that he was quite oblivious. I think mainly of the difficult. Yet she seems to have been very successful as a parent. but at the time. They may have evaded school. . I think of the anxiety that she must have felt not knowing where her boys were and what they were doing when she was at work.-142When I imagine the life of Beatrice in these years after the death of Alfredo. To him. but they did not shirk the jobs that supported their family.

they would be given a thousand-dollar bonus and free passage back to America. Paolicelli. New York.Blessed are those young men who hunger and thirst for glory. Thomas Dunne Books. Under the Southern Sun: Stories of the Real Italy and the Americans It Created . The University of Michigan Press.. Italy entered the Great War for a variety of reasons. particularly the lands of the Ottoman Empire. The most prominent rationale put forth by its government was that of irredentism in which the claim was made that the Tyrolean region should be part of Italy as there was a high percentage of Italians in this Austrian held territory.." as the saying goes. Ann Arbor. it also tried to discern the winner based upon the first year of fighting. and unification in the 19 th century. God has been pleased to grant us proof of our privileged blood. for the best pre-war deal. In return. Beatrice contacted the Italian Consulate and the International Red Cross in an effort to have him return home. Paul. The Austrians had maintained a standing army and launched their invasions from the Tyrol. 1915. the King of Italy advertised in the journals for native sons to return and fight for their homeland. St. 264.After long years of national humiliation.. 193 192 . the Italian nation appealed to its departed sons: “When the First World War broke out.-143Chapter 14 The Great War Armando’s Odyssey With the assassination of Archduke Ferdinand of Austria on June 28.Blessed are they that have. With the drain of manpower due to the flood of emigration in the preceding years. Modern Italy: A Political History. Denying the Austrians this region would mean the relocation of their army beyond the Alps. To a certain degree. Italy declared war on the Austrian-Hungarian Empire on May 23. this was a sham. and it succeeded in enlisting one Armando Camillo Giovanni Paolini. but he departed anyway. Smith. The Italians were still fearful of the Austrians who had crushed their attempts of achieving independence. 85. Martin’s Press. Italy chose the Triple Entente of Great Britain. however. even though Austria was willing to yield to most of the demands for territory in the northeast. p. With the help of friends. a natural defensive barrier." 192 Gabriele d'Annunzio poet and revolutionary born in the Abruzzo.. p. "To the victors belong the spoils.. he could not be released from his enlistment. 1914. republicanism. Beatrice objected.” 193 There were many organizations in America that were formed locally and/or by the instigation of the Italian government to aid and assist Italian immigrants in acclimating and succeeding in America. Denis Mack. and Italy wanted a seat at the victor's table when it came time to award the spoils. for they have more to give and can burn with a hotter flame. for they shall be filled. France and Russia. and if they survived. the Triple Entente and the Triple Alliance. the ‘war to end all wars' commenced. 1959. because he was 18 years of age. 2003. guarantees of territories and military assistance. Italy delayed entering the war because it bargained with both sides. But for some. the war was seen as a means by which Italy could achieve greatness: ".. that is.. One of these organizations served to recruit soldiers for the Italian Army..

and thus they and he were still Italian citizens. 195 194 . he would still have been obligated to serve: “ Although Italians lost their Italian citizenship when they acquired foreign citizenship. The Italian government identified its potential recruits for the Italian military from the atti di nascite . At the end of the war. who was born in Italy in 1893 and emigrated in 1898. Armando and his comrades were forced to return to Italy as best they could. His story is provided in my monograph History of Italy and is entitled: Virgilio’s Caporetto Odyssey . John W. the registry of births in each province. A military record was found for the Del Grande’s oldest son. p. Yale University Press. Had they been naturalized. but afforded no transportation that would enable them to return to Italy. Briggs. ” 194 During the period of the war. There are no recollections of Armando in his capture in battle nor his imprisonment. Armando was captured by the Austrians at the famous Battle of Caporetto195 . But his moment of peril was short lived. it is not known whether or not the Italian government contacted him and recruited him. Carlo Alberto.. His parents were not naturalized. For Armando. 1890-1930 . it can be deduced that he became a potential recruit. this did not eliminate the obligations of military service incumbent on all Italian-born males. New Haven. 134. probably upon birth. the Italian prisoners were released. In his first engagement. Armando Paolini Surely his mother feared for his life and worried about him throughout the war. or whether he answered the clarion call of his native land. However.-144Armando had been born in Italy. Italy had a conscript army–young men had no choice but to report for military duty when called. he would have derived citizenship. Not having found any military records of Armando. and emigrated at the age of nine. but I did find a very interesting personal recollection of one such Italian. it must have seemed like a waste of time: he spent the remaining two years of the war in a prisoner-of-war camp. 1978. which was a disastrous defeat for the Italians. An Italian Passage: Immigrants to Three American Cities. but certainly by age five.

’ either because the name was short for Grazia or because zia is the word for aunt. FHL INTL Film [ 2016265 ] Maria Grazia was 61 years old when Armando emigrated in December 1920. His location and movements during this time are again vague. or possibly recently discharged. so it is likely that it was the American government that raised objection as to his identity and therefore had not allowed him to return to the United States immediately. and it was on the manifest of the ship ( SS Moltke ) on which the family had immigrated. Armando was homesick for his family. that he was the father of Armando. Abruzzo. but it is not known which officials. and living in the Abruzzo. would be able to take a trip to Paris. It is possible that legislation enacted in 1917 made immigration more restrictive and documentation more stringent. But the fact that he received a letter from a girl in Paris after his return to the United States gives evidence that he did so.’ it states: “uncle di Giulio Camillo POPOLI. To prove his identity. 196 Camillo and Zia were childless. It is difficult to understand how a young man supposedly in the Italian Army. and in fact it is known that he lived with a woman who was called `Zia. Presumably the Italian army could determine his identity. If she didn’t have children then. he declared that his father’s name was Alfredo. and that both had immigrated in 1906. it may have been necessary for Beatrice to provide an affidavit that stated that Ildebrando and Alfredo were one and the same person. “Ildebrando” was his father’s given name. Therefore. his identification papers had been taken from him. When a prisoner of the Austrians.197 and she wanted Armando to stay with them. I have not found any record originating in Italy with the name Alfredo. events and reasons are rather vague and somewhat conjectural. ‘Name and Complete Address of Nearest Friend or Relative in Country whence Alien Came . which was the only name he had heard his father called. it was a nickname that he adopted. and he wanted to return to America. 197 196 . this bureaucratic entanglement took more than two years to straighten out–lengthy even by Italian standards.” A marriage record was found for Camillo di Giulio and Maria Grazia Del Grande. one can only imagine the nature of this relationship and what his life might have been had he pursued this woman. 1888. There is no doubt that Armando wished to return home to America immediately. she certainly would not have had children after 1920. Again. One wonders if he ever regretted this decision. with no visible means of support. In any case. Not surprisingly though. 19 Dec 1888. On the manifest record of the Braga. 1809-1910. the record of recognition by his mother Angiola. It was recorded on his birth record. Number 67. but he was unable to obtain his return as there were complications over his identification papers. In trying to re-establish his identity. Italy. in the column entitled. the ship on which he embarked for his second immigration to America.-145At this point. and so he was unable to prove his identity to the satisfaction of officials. attempts to equate Alfredo with Ildebrando using the available existing public records in Italy and America failed. More than likely. Registri dello stato civile. and she hinted that he would inherit their property. Marriage record of Maria Grazia Del Grande and Camillo Di Giulio. thus leaving Armando stranded. in Popoli. It is known that there was a remaining sister of Don Francesco named Maria Grazia Del Grande that would have been Armando’s great aunt.

and Armando remarked. Italians in America . Doran Co. Minnesota. more than any other immigrant nationality. George H. but -. were enrolled.oh my God. perhaps 300. I saw my brother in his army uniform.” 200 198 Rose. walking in great strides. Paul. Oak Park with name of Hugo Del Grande While I was playing on the street." Well. I told them about my brother. and often the most prominent part.” 198 “The Italians are about 4 per cent. “Tomorrow I’m going to the United States on that ship. As he related to his family. being stationed at Fort Snelling near St. and I of course was the most disappointed of all. .000. of Italian names. New York. I didn't know a sergeant from a colonel. lumber-camp. Harper and Brothers. 245. but many did register and serve in the armed forces of their adopted country: “. "Wait until you see my brother" to everyone. They asked me. or docks in which Italians did not play a large part.. and traveled to the Port of Napoli in order to board a ship for America. Massachusetts when the war ended. and Adolph Paolini joined the American army. he tapped me on the head and said.” The man replied doubtfully. New York. we were all stunned and disappointed. ammunition-factory. mine. Ottie?" I was sure proud of him. 177. and when we met. 1920. being stationed at the Great Lakes Naval Training Center. when he came downstairs dressed in civilian clothes.000 men of Italian stock. but none had a tale to tell as interesting as Armando’s. steel-mill.” But he did make it--returning on 5 January 1921 on the ship called the Braga. the day before he was scheduled to depart.in the American Army. We were all anxious to see him. I rushed to greet him. "how‘re you doing. of the whole population. Apparently it did not inspire confidence. 200 199 Ibid.-146Obviously he returned from France. 1922. he went down to the harbor to see the ship on which he had booked passage. and later when some of the boys met me. But he did make corporal. How We Advertised America.” 199 “There was no shipyard. American Service Hugo Del Grande joined the American navy. “I don’t think you’ll make it. p.. in actual and efficient work. airplane-factory. or very conservatively. 97. the first telling of the amazing story of the Committee on public information that carried the gospel of Americanism to every corner of the globe. Neither went overseas though Adolph's regiment was being readied to be sent to Europe and to sail from Boston. "probably a sergeant. My father vividly describes his brother Adolph's return: Scoville Park. Creel. Other members of the Del Grande and Paolini families served in the military during the Great War. p. George. Philip Marshman. I kept saying. "What was he in the army?" I told them. but the list of casualties shows a full 10 per cent.. Few Italians immigrants joined the Italian army. Another man was looking at the ship as well.

Some of the school classes were permitted a recess to see this work of art.’ Garment Factory Workers Aldo Takes Otto Under His Wing With Armando and Adolph in military service. He took the most responsibility for my safety and development. it caused an increase in demand for manpower for the production of war matériel. He claimed that conditions in factories did not improve until the unions were formed and pressured the owners to improve the workers situation. especially for those who position was in the middle of the room. Therefore wages rose dramatically. Arthur began working as a tailor. One of his most astonishing drawings was that of a battlefield of World War I that he drew on the asphalt pavement of the street. and no doubt was charged with his supervision. This teacher was from a wealthy family. Naturally she often mentioned her family. Arthur was a member of the Amalgamated Clothing Workers of America and always proclaimed that he was a ‘union man. This made the entire family happy and proud. My mother was able to attend English classes along with other immigrants during her lunch period at work. I was lucky to have a brother of this quality. stated that her father told her he started work at age twelve. Even though he went to work. The teachers of these classes were volunteers. And now comes a turning point of his life. She asked to see some of Aldo's work. he wrote: Aldo was my next oldest brother. For this reason. he said that it a terrible place to work. It also had a significant economic affect that benefitted the immigrant community. thus providing those who remained a greater income. 201 His daughter. and Emily with their grandparents. at the same time. she immediately wanted to ask him if he would like to go to art school. and so she enrolled him in the Art Institute of Chicago. Aldo never finished school–for a reason I never knew. and after she did. Aldo was five years older than Otto. he continued to draw. and he and I had a great relationship. . mostly from the northern suburbs of Chicago. and she became close with one of the teachers.-147This contribution and sacrifice increased ethnic pride among the Italian community and increased prestige and honor in the eyes of all Americans. he/she could move closer to the window which afforded some cooler and fresher air. my father grew exceptionally close to his brother Aldo and was someone he greatly admired. The war caused an extreme decline in immigration and thus a decrease in the labor supply. The picture covered about 100 to 125 feet. Correspondently. he showed talent in art by drawing continuously–drawing on any material he could get. Carol Jean Paolini. My mother was very anxious to learn English. In his memoirs. and she was very interested in art. and her son Aldo who had great talent for drawing. only Aldo and Otto were left at home.201 While it was probably a factory and not a sweatshop per se . It was cold in the winter and hot in the summer. As one gained seniority. When Aldo was quite young. Naturally he accepted. and was a located a block from our school. about fourteen years of age. Arthur’s Contribution Sometime during this period of 1912-1915.

It soon became obvious to them that more practical education and training were what the immigrants needed and wanted: English language. compulsory education. Hull House The teaching of English by a volunteer and her intervention to have Aldo enrolled in the Art Institute of Chicago suggests involvement with the Hull House. child labor laws. and that my close and loving relationship with my brother Aldo was wonderful.american-architecture. “Essential Architecture: Jane Addams’ Hull 202 House” http://www.encyclopedia. When I look back on those early years. cooking.htm One of the seventy-seven communities designated by the Social Science Research Committee at the University of Chicago as described previously. and he tried to teach me the meaning of art.chicagohistory.202 The settlement house was opened in 1889 for which its founders had had very modest goals.org/pages/615. http://www. investigation of housing. the house had become dilapidated. By the time Jane Addams was searching for a building to house her new enterprise. and protection of immigrants to name a few. the establishment of the first juvenile court.204 These leaders also became reformers in their own interest: women’s suffrage. and Federal level were many: establishment of the city’s first playground and bathhouse. occupational safety and health provisions.html. lobbying for protective legislation for women and children. They imagined a place to offer art and literary education to their less fortunate neighbors. a settlement house founded by Jane Addams and Linda Gates Starr. The leaders and volunteers of the organization were prominent and wealthy women who resided in the Gold Coast community 203 and the northern suburbs of the city. . state. 204 203 Encyclopedia of Chicago. and sanitation issues. Hull at 800 South Halsted in 1856.info/USA/CHICAGO/CHIC-LS/CHIC-LS-041.-148Since Aldo and I were very close and spent a lot of time together. they recognized the needs and responded. working. The influence and accomplishments of Hull House at the local. but even though he praised some of my work and would tell our mother that I had talent. The Paolini family were part of this socio-political environment and movement that have built institutions that are now the everyday fabric of our society. Hull House Mansion Dinning Room Obviously they saw the need for education in the areas that they themselves had been educated so as to be refined and cultivated women. he would pass some of the secrets of art to me. The original house for which the settlement was named was an Italianate mansion built by real estate magnate Charles J. The present-day building is but the residents dinning hall (dating to 1905) and rebuilt missing portions of the mansion which was moved 200 yards from its original location in order to accommodate buildings for the University of Illinois Chicago campus. I realize that it was a wonderful period of my life. I wasn't ambitious enough to pursue it. To their credit. sewing and technical skills that could qualify them for a job. He tried to encourage me to draw.

-149Paolini Family circa 1915 Otto (Attie). and Arthur Paolini (about 1915) Emily Paolini Emily and Beatrice Paolini . Beatrice. Aldo.

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-151Paolini Family circa 1915 Arthur Paolini Sr. Maria Beatrice Del Grande [Paolini] Armando Paolini .

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headed by Vincenzo Dinella who had seven daughters. School Sisters of St. Armand was not an enthusiastic baseball fan at that time. often for the suburbs which depopulated the neighborhood and led to the demand of expressways to bring them back to the city-center for their white-collar jobs. then home of the Chicago National League Ball Club (Cubs). May 29. 1918. and. Don Francesco and Gemma said farewell to their youngest daughter Lily as she boarded a train for Milwaukee. mostly about baseball--the Chicago Cubs versus the White Sox. A year later on June 25. so he didn't participate in the baseball discussions. Emily Paolini asked to return to her family. she pledged the Franciscan order and took the name of Wilma. and we would have some interesting conversations and some heated arguments.-153Chapter 15 The Family Reunited Coming Home On August 14.205 Having lost her roommate and close friend. it is a subject that continues to evolve with various generalizations and explanations. In the course of this time. 1917. Art and Adolph were Cub fans and Aldo and I were White Sox fans. 2007. Frances. The consequence was its undoing. Clearance of even the standard housing was required for the paving of the Dan Ryan and Congress expressways. Wisconsin. Little remains of the Italian enclave save a few street of houses and some Italian restaurants. being ten years old. both to the people and the infrastructure. Joseph Convent. A reply to the inquiry regarding her name stated that it was assigned by the bishop. churches. its schools. the neighborhood became quite livable. Also. there was a room for her. the vacant land became available for institutional development for the Chicago Medical Center and the University of Illinois. but loved to discuss politics and opera. as the inhabitants became more prosperous and as reformers clamored for more and better services. There is no saint recognized by the Catholic Church as Wilma. she would attend school for much of the day and not need constant supervision. As Armando and Adolph were still away in service. recreation facilities and settlement houses influenced and acculturated these foreign-born peoples to American living patterns and values. Beatrice relocated the family to larger quarters at 1739 Polk Street–slightly west of the ‘Little Italy’/Taylor Street area206 and a block away from the West Side Grounds. She had decided to take vows to become a nun and was enrolling in St. The building was owned by the Dinella family. As substandard structures were demolished. E-mail from Mary Ann Eichenseer. The Paolini family was reunited for the first time since the death of Alfredo in 1910. The history of Italian settlements in urban centers is not the subject nor within the scope of this family history. all of marriageable age. Adolph return home in 1919. Many of the foreign-born immigrants and their second-generation offspring moved out of the area. My father states: "We were happy to be together again and enjoyed many wonderful times. 206 205 . Expecting Adolph and Armando to return shortly. and Armando returned in 1921." He describes family life: It was a custom that the entire family sat together at the dinner table. It does seem to me that the Taylor Street neighborhood may have been disheveled and dirty.

but they needed to work in order to support the family–clear evidence of family cohesion. About one-half do not speak English. The children receive little or no ethical instruction. 209 . to include in the work of the first six grades such knowledge and information as will be of most use in the kind of life they are planning to lead. drawing and poetry.209 Aldo certainly had an appreciation for drawing. behaviors. therefore. and knowledge. p. somewhat plaintively. 207 A teacher in Utica. New York. my mother related. An Italian Passage . 1906 Most of the Italian people are not interested in higher education. but wish their children to go to work as soon as the law will permit. New York.-154***** Characterization of Italian Immigrants The literature on immigrants in general. The incident of my father ironing his shirts before school indicates both his cleanliness and neatness [for which I carry the family gene] and his selfreliance. 208 In relating these stories. All spoke English as well as Italian. 208 A principal in Utica. Consider the following quotes provided by Briggs: The parents of these [immigrant] children work with the hands rather than the head. Their dinner conversation is evidence of family inter-course. but I leave it to the reader to select his/her own. 208. that Italians were notorious for being dirty. We aim. and Italian immigrants in particular. and from an American stand-point. I have my own preferred explanation. there is no real social family inter-course and very little proper instruction in common household duties. all advanced in their occupations and all were knowledgeable of current events as they avidly read the newspaper. Beatrice wanted her children to continue their schooling. unattractive. p. present a very contrasting picture to the Del Grande and Paolini families. It is also true that we are equally anxious that they secure an appreciation of music. or that Italians were mis-characterized and/or overgeneralized based upon a few families. They have very little idea of law or obedience. Briggs. some of them are half fed and most of them are very dirty. 1916 As I have described the Paolini family. but she got one that was fastidiously clean. The home life of our children is bare. or that American schools were so successful that they instilled these positive attitudes. While none of them save perhaps Aldo were devoted to school work. An Italian Passage . All pitched-in with family chores. ***** 207 Briggs. and all had a love and knowledge of music. therefore. the contrast with the observations and generalizations of Italian immigrants is quite stark. the children whose experience is much more limited than that of average children must have the latent power within them developed almost entirely in the schoolroom. 213. my father maintaining the fuoco (fire in the stove) as a prime example. I am not certain as to whether the Del Grande and Paolini families were different from other Italian families because they were of a different social class.

Another way he got me do things was to challenge my speed. Most of us jumped in and started toward the breakwater. it became dark in early evening. During winter days. he yelled back to the people on shore to tell him when he was halfway so he could decide whether or not he could swim the full distance. . didn't start swimming with us. He would bet me I couldn't complete doing some chore before he counted. located just north of downtown. He would first pick the kitchen stove. He followed us a little later. but because of the current we drift sideway and had to keep adjusting our direction in order to reach the breakwater. we would go to Oak Street Beach on Lake Michigan. Only one of the boys. while soft coal was used in the kitchen stove. but sometimes he became so involved in his play that he would let the stoves go out. etc. Carmen Vitullo. and after a few yards from shore. We decided to swim from this strip to a breakwater about 300 to 400 feet away. We laughed afterwards. Hard coal was used in the stove in the living room. Swimming in Lake Michigan During the summer when we were about 10 or 11 years old. We all made it. for example. and order to get the stove started before our mother came home from work. The breakwater ran parallel to the shore and was about the length of a football field. he thought of scheme to get me to work as well. What we didn't know was that there was a strong current running parallel to the shore. the latter being much easier to start. He was also responsible for keeping our two coal stoves burning. and we were able to run along the shallow water and play games like wrestling and leapfrogging. to 100. He challenged me to a race as to which of us could get a stove burning first. and of course. We swam straight to the breakwater. or whatever he thought would be fair.-155Challenges Aldo was just a child himself but he had the responsibility of preventing me from getting into trouble or being hurt. Where the sandy part of the beach ends. but we all knew that it was a foolish exhibition that could have resulted in tragedy. the land juts out towards the deep water from which there is a strip of concrete about 20 feet wide and a block long. Later we realized that the distance of halfway and return to shore is equal to the full length. I would object and wanted the kitchen stove which was fine with him because then I was helping him do his chore. What fun we had because of the spaciousness. One day we decided on an adventure. Of course I raced as fast as I could and naturally he waited until I was just about done and then he would start the final count.

In front of the old stadium was a large parking area with posts about four feet high anchored in the ground and about ten feet apart from one another. Piggy move-up was played with only a few batters and mostly fielders. I tried to rush out as fast as I could. We realized how stupid we had been. prior to the use of automobiles. Field of Dreams This area on Polk Street was not a very prosperous section of the city. She was gracious and just smiled at us and said a few words. The Cubs moved from this park in 1916 to the present Wrigley Field at Addison and Waveland which was built for a team in the Federal League which failed. Then we went across the street to the county morgue to get a drink of cold water at the drinking fountain. We started talking to her and found her to be very charming and pleasant. I became uncomfortably hot. I was anxious to see him go through this same ordeal. From then on. when I visit the beach and see these young girls so scantily clad and think back that an eleven-year old boy was told he must wear a top. and therefore we were able to play baseball. To our amazement. These posts had been used years earlier to hitch the horses and buggies. pleasant conversation with her. whenever she passed us. Most of the time we played softball or "piggy move-up" since we usually had only seven or eight players–not enough to make two teams. Part of the parking area was cleared of the hitching posts. Naturally I was frightened." We talked to her several times. This ballpark had been built in the late 19th century. One day while at the beach. The water was always cold because Chicago's water supply is from Lake Michigan which is always cold and doesn't need any refrigeration. I can only laugh at the contrast. A block away from our home was the old Chicago Cubs ball park–the original one–across the street from the Cook County Hospital. Another pastime of ours was to go over to the psychopathic hospital and lay on the grass in the shade. I pulled at the door to try to escape which I finally managed to do. . Only a short time elapsed when the lifeguard came over and ordered me to put my top on again as men were not allowed to be shirtless. then they would all rush out and slam the door behind them. The other boys would wait while I was drinking. When one of the batters made an out. She just smiled but never answered our questions.-156Beach Dress Code The popular style of bathing suits for men at that time was blue trunks with a wide white canvas belt. "You're such a nice girl. You don't look like the rest of them. she had on a nurse's uniform. There were several row of these posts. Now. we noticed a very pretty girl. It was not a slum. We played until we got tired. This was the initiation of the "new boy on the block. and I decided to remove the top of my swimming suit." Whenever a new boy moved into the neighborhood. always asking why she was in there. realizing that the next room was where they kept the cadavers. but all we could see was her head. With all the speed and strength I could muster. We never spoke to them except one day on the first floor near the entrance. we would have a little. at my retired age. Then one day she came out of the side entrance and walked toward us. I was the victim of a scheme by the others boys. but more or less a blue collar neighborhood. As I was a new boy on the block. We said to her. he would take the place of a fielder who would then move up and become a batter. together with a white sleeveless top. We always looked up at the windows to see some of the patients.

Well.-157When I was about twelve years of age. there lived a young man who played the drums with a small band. While I lived on Polk Street. and we boys called him "Leggy. as there never seemed to be enough. A few of us decided to organize our own team. we always tried to behave and please them. He accepted it in good humor. and we didn't mean to hurt him. This was one way we could show them our gratitude. At Hull House I became acquainted with a boy for whom I had great admiration. The Chase House was run by Episcopalian nuns who I respected very much. also we would invite some of our opponents when there was a tournament or contest that we wanted to organize. Therefore I went back to my old neighborhood on Plum Street to see if there was an organized team. he played basketball and baseball. He didn't ask for any favors. The one we selected was out west -Columbus Park. and uniforms with the "Chase House" emblem on the back. Here I learned to become a better swimmer and diver. At that time. and we were happy to do so. As I reflect on Chase House. They played at weddings and other neighborhood events. It was at that time that I started to gain some recognition of my skills as a ballplayer. but we didn't realize that. and some of these large homes were now fraternity houses for the medical students of the university. They even furnished a meeting room for our occasional business meetings when we made our rules and regulations. right down the street on Plum Street. except that they wore gray. these people moved from this area. and they were more than happy to sponsor our baseball team by furnishing us with a supply of bats. We boys had a meeting with the head nun and a priest. The official said. I joined the Duncan WMCA on Ashland Boulevard. Even with his handicap. Because we appreciated and respected them so much. table tennis and basketball. some of the city parks had recreation halls. and we didn't grant him any. and also I learned to play billiards. After several years of playing for the Chase House Tigers." . we came to the conclusion that we would sponsor a dance to raise the money we needed. I became more active in baseball. The next thing we had to do was make arrangements for a dancehall. I believe that if more centers were organized as well as this place without a lot of regimentation and preaching. there will be no charge to you for the use of the hall. They were responsible for our good behavior. This was a real godsend to us." This was probably a cruel thing to call him. There was a youth center on Ashland Boulevard called Chase House. After some discussion. We didn't want to impose upon this wonderful organization who had been so kind and generous in furnishing uniforms and equipment. balls. We respected them. He had been in an accident and had lost a foot. He agreed. He had an artificial limb. "If you do not charge admission. He became fairly good as a baseball pitcher. and it didn't seem to offend him at all. I would also occasionally visit the Jane Addams Hull House where I started to learn to dance–something at which I never became very accomplished. This youth center occupied a large residence as were most of the houses on Ashland Boulevard between Van Buren and Polk Street as they were owned by well-to-do people at one time. My greatest love was baseball. and I guess they tried to do their best to make us happy. and when I was about twelve years of age I wanted to play on an organized team. We asked him if his small orchestra would play at our dance. As the city grew. The were dressed in habits like those of the Catholic orders. We went there and explained what we wished to do. and we accepted him as just another player. young people would probably respond as we did. probably preventing us from getting into trouble. we boys decided to raise some money to purchase more equipment and bats and balls.

so the fee for the use of the hall was $25. and fortunately we often won this prize. The curtains were to be made of a plain beige fabric called pongee. None of the ballplayers brought any girl friends. Previous classes had given many fine pictures of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table. We had a contest for the best design which was to be printed across the bottom of the curtains. Because of my age. We decided to charge twenty-five cents admission per person. Of course. After several attempts to collect his money. and we never bet on our games. we had discussed the matter of betting on games with the nun in charge and with a priest and they said they would not like to use the Chase House name in connection with such a thing as betting on games. we had no money to pay the orchestra. I also sold tickets to my sister and her boy friend. it was brought to our attention that the school office windows were without any curtains. Later on. As I was president of the club. since we were never paid for playing ball. To my surprise. This experience was really a great fiasco. and we were booked to play against church organizations such as the Knights of Columbus and Veteran's Hospital. there was no way we could pay him. The confessed that they hadn't sold any. We were paid a small amount. the orchestra leader gave up. The orchestra arrived early prior to the eight o'clock starting time for the dance on a Saturday night. The orchestra leader would come to our meetings and demand payment. it had been the custom of the graduating class to give a graduation present to the school. At the beginning of our association with Chase House. was selected as the winner. no other guests appeared. He wanted to know when we would pay and we said that maybe at the end of the baseball season we would have enough money to pay this debt. we became a well-established ball team. the orchestra was reluctant to play but we persuaded them to start. The student who won the design contest also would do the work of printing the design on the curtains. he and I would enjoy a laugh about the dance. John McLaren Elementary School At the John McLaren Grammar School. Each member of our team was given an allotment of tickets to sell and the dance was to take place in about a month. knowing full well that we had no way of raising the money. All the ball players also showed up before eight o'clock and waited anxiously for the people to start coming. so we voted to give curtains as our graduation gift. I had very little experience in selling tickets. but it did teach me a lesson in how to attend to the details of organizing a project. By that time. I was able to sell only two tickets to a girl and her friend who I had known in my early days in grammar school. After quite some time. Since there were only four people there. We promised him that we would pay in the future. and some of the students suggested that we give this same type of gift. A prize was also given to the winning team. my design. which consisted of a pear and two leaves. I mention this because betting on games was the custom at that time. However. whenever I saw him.-158Of course we were going to charge admission. I inquired of each member to account for how many tickets they had sold. John McLaren School . we lost contact with the orchestra leader and so we couldn't pay him. but for years. However. A short time afterwards the two girls I sold tickets to arrived and a few minutes later my sister and her boyfriend came.

I thought I knew all the answers. reddish yellow on the pear and green on the leaves. The Tortoise and the Hare At McKinley High School. I never asked for any because. I made an error in fielding. We could take all the time we wanted to complete the assignment as long as it was finished by the last week of the semester. which I loved. in my first English class. I was not the regular shortstop because of my poor performance at the last game of the regular season. To my surprise. I would prefer to have some other student read theirs. Everyone was very proud of our gift and I was so glad that I was able to give something in return to John McLaren School. because I developed poor study habits. I went to the library in desperation and looked for books of fables and fairy tales which I thought would fulfill the requirement. I was reluctant to read my story. She said the story itself was not important as long as the grammar and sentence structure were correct. and I cut out my design from a square piece of linoleum. Each section of the curtain was stretched onto a frame. she commented on the work that had been turned in. I was happy that I didn't make a single mistake. In other words. terrible mistake. I believe that these players told the coach of my previous experience. I knew I had the ability and only needed guidance from an understanding coach to reach my potential in baseball. I could have used some advice and some guidance. Some of the players on the team I already knew and also had played against some of them in the past on sandlot baseball teams. I kept putting off this assignment until the very last day. I got up and sort of fumbled . William McKinley High School: Two Strikes and You're Out I graduated from grammar school and entered the William McKinley High School where I tried out for the baseball team in the spring. I was often complemented on my play. In all that time. I copied one of the fables word for word and turned it in to my teacher. McKinley High baseball team did win the West section championship that year but lost the first round game against another section.-159A working place was set up in the manual training room. I had a very young teacher who was exceptionally competent. She vigorously insisted on having me read my story and said if I wanted to receive my credit in English. I was cautioned to be very careful and not to hurry. I said I would rather not read it aloud. At this time. I thought I would never play baseball again with desire and confidence. with the bases full. and the coach thought that I could fill the vacancy left by the previous star shortstop who had graduated. In the latter innings of the game. I would add paint to the design. Everything went well during practice and during the regular scheduled season. I would have to read it. This was a terrible. and I lacked ambition to improve myself. I struck out and to make things even worse. One error meant that the section could not be used. The first assignment she gave us was to write a fairy tale or a fable. Then I panicked. and she said that she would like to have some of the students read their stories aloud. foolishly." Naturally I was very disappointed and depressed because of this experience. The next day when the teacher came to class. and I felt very confident and very happy. I was "benched. but the very last game of the season proved disastrous for me. she called my name first. We won most of our games that season.

The teacher again threatened me with a failing grade if I didn't go on. As foolish as my father appears. "Wait a moment. and I knew that I was going to be ridiculed throughout the whole thing. I want you to announce the title and read your story. word for word. he doesn't try to shift the blame to others nor offer excuses though he does come to realize that he could have used some help. The further I read the more hysterical the class became. I think that it should be recognized that he takes the blame entirely on himself." they must have thought. "The Tortoise and the Hare. I received a zero on that paper. They were rolling in the aisles by the time I finished. The teacher tapped for attention." I announced the title. as you have it on your paper.-160and she said. ." The entire class exploded with laughter. "How stupid could anyone be. and also I failed that course. so I refused to go on.

with the dining hall being built in 1906 (the above complex surrounds the original building). The dining hall has been relocated and was declared a Chicago Landmark in 1976. Jane Addams Collection. Swarthmore College Peace Collection West Side Field (1906) The phrase "Way out in left field" originated at the West Side Grounds. . due to the location of a psychiatric hospital behind the ballpark's left field fence.-161Chicago John McLaren Elementary School Hull House The original building of the Hull House Settlement was built in 1856. where players and fans could hear patients making odd and strange remarks during games .

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IL 60612 Cook County Hospital (1914-2002) Austin High School (circa 1920) (1898-1930) 231 North Pine Av Chicago. IL 60644-2333 .-163- Cook County Hospital (1900) (1876-1914) McKinley High School (1901–1996) 2040 West Adams Street Chicago.

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Paul. Thus a soldier could file a petition and be naturalized in the same day. Harding campaigned for the presidency on the slogan of “Return to Normalcy” and won. Adolph returned from service to resume his job as a tailor.-165Chapter 16 Five Weddings and Two Funerals Return to Normalcy In 1920. military. specifically it waived the Declaration of Intention requirement and waived or reduced the residency requirement. the slogan seems to have been adopted as a plan of action for the decade by the Paolini family. Emily and Otto continued their high school education. Aldo also worked as a tailor though he did pursue studies at the Art Institute of Chicago for a while. For the use of the manifest of the SS Moltke in processing her request for citizenship. see appendix A. With two exceptions. Armando submitted his petition for naturalization on February 23.S. Adolph was naturalized during service while residing at Fort Snelling near St. Arthur also continued his work as a tailor though his daughter Carol Jean reports that he supplemented his income by becoming a pool hall hustler. Warren G. Beatrice210 and Arthur submitted their declaration of intentions about the same time (1934). a month after he returned from Italy. It is believed that Beatrice continued to work for Alfred Decker & Cohn. probably in anticipation of the Social Security Act of 1935. 210 . and was naturalized six years later. 1921. Minnesota. Emily and Otto All who immigrated save Aldo became naturalized citizens: Beatrice Armando Adolph Arthur 1 October 1935 7 June 1927 17 June 1918 20 December 1934 Adolph was probably naturalized under provisions of nationality law for aliens serving in the U.

Vincenzo (Vito) Dinella. a medium size city in the Abruzzo. he and his uncle Hugo drove to New York City "in order to try out his new car. For this reason. and she insisted that they be married by a priest in a Catholic church. respectively. 211 212 Petition for Citizenship of Arthur Paolini." Vincenzo Dinella and Angelina Costrina [Dinella] Apparently Arthur needed to have one last fling. 1923 212. He also was a foreman in a construction company. but he seems to have voluntarily committed to a relationship in America. dated 20 Feb 1934. Arthur started dating Josephine and then married her. "I didn't think he would do that. His dalliance did not go unnoticed. He seems to have honored his ‘marital obligation’ as his wife Angelina Costrina who bore children in 1889 and 1890 in Italy. Arthur had been going with a young lady who worked in the same shop. Josephine continued to live in her parent’s apartment until the church marriage on January 19. Polk Street.213 Josephine did not recognize the legitimacy of this marriage ceremony. Anna and Josephine. that Anna and Josephine pursued Armando and Arthur. Two weeks before the wedding. but there was a second marriage ceremony. The two had a quarrel. 122991. to resist–and it’s doubtful that they tried. There is a noticeable gap in the birth of children from 1890 to 1902. who shall remain anonymous.-166Arthur Paolini and Josephine Dinella At the apartment building at 1739 W. Arthur had insisted that they be married by the civil authority as was required in Italy. No. and word got back to his wife who had remained in Italy. 1924. Their father. She and their daughters emigrated soon thereafter so as to re-establish their marriage. brothers and fiancée. According to Beatrice. otherwise. had immigrated in 1883 from Pescasseroli. Vito became a padrone . When the young girl heard the news of the marriage. Starting in 1809 with Napoleonic law and continuing to the present. the availability of two young bachelors in their own building was too tempting for the Dinella211 sisters. she wept and said. and perhaps she overplayed her hand." Somehow he forgot to mention this excursion to anyone. they regularly produced children reaching a total of eight. After the ceremony on New Year's Eve. he helped the new immigrant surmount the language barrier and explained American labor practices. It was said by many family members. families often gave him presents at Christmas time in order to gain or retain his favor. including his mother. Josephine was ready to kill them both. Initially he worked as a laborer in the construction of canals. 213 . and he determined which men worked and what jobs they were assigned. Arthur and Josephine were married in front of a judge on December 31. meaning that he sponsored the passage of other immigrants and found them jobs for which he was repaid with interest. Several canal projects were undertaken in the period 1887 to 1922 such as that which linked the Chicago River to the Des Plaines River.

and she was very susceptible to pneumonia. then two more would enter with Giancana. Mary Therese lived only one day. Carol Jean. probably Sam Giancana. robes. 214 Now called Leonard's Fine Mens Clothing. In the 1950s. Did he accompany them on their honeymoon? In his Petition for Citizenship recorded on February 20. When she was in the sanitarium. Once he dropped a $100 bill on the floor while her father was fitting him. which she had a couple of times. He was a perfectionist. he worked in a tailor shop. They were beautiful hats. it is still in business as of this writing (2010). Carol said that he made suits for at least one mobster. a daughter named Mary Therese. but two Borsalino hats. my father could never bear to part with those hats.214 in Elmhurst. . etc. Arthur recorded his occupation as tailor. her roommate was the sister of Baby Face Nelson. nightgowns. 1934. saying that it was dirty because it had been on the floor. Josephine said that they loved it when he came to visit because he brought both of them all kinds of presents. My father bought many of his suits at Leonard’s as he probably received some discount plus extra attention to his suits from his brother. a notorious Chicago mobster. Leonard's Store For Men. which was successful. and hence the name. on October 1. "My mother talked about her all the time as though she lived awhile. Josephine had tuberculosis in the early part of her married life. Sadly there was a complication in the pregnancy (placenta previa in which the placenta grows in the lowest part of the womb (uterus) and covers all or part of the cervix). dying on October 2nd." reports Carol.-167There are two pictures of Josephine and Arthur in New York. usually more than nine hours a day. Still. 1931. said that her father worked six days a week. Giancana refused to take it. She was in a sanitarium for a time but exactly how long is not known. but he seem to have forgotten or not realized that he and my mother were planning to move to Florida where such hats were not needed nor an appropriate style. then two more would enter and stand at the entrance leading to the front of the store. He once bought not one. The mobster would often buy several suits at a time costing thousands of dollars. and nothing left the back room until he had inspected and approved it. Illinois owned by a man named Leonard Shapiro. one includes a picture of a man that appears to be his uncle Hugo. Apparently Josephine's lungs were severely damaged by the disease. Two men would enter by the rear entrance. when Arthur retrieve the bill and attempted to hand it back to him. the Feast Day of St. Therese. and she had to undergo a treatment in which her lungs had to be collapsed and surgery performed. flowers. His daughter. Josephine bore her first child. the day designated by the Catholic Church as a celebration of the Feast of The Guardian Angels. and 60's. Carol and her brother Art were checked periodically for tuberculosis. such as candy.

W. In 1947 or 1948. they could dine at one of their relatives. In 1899. Corcoran Pl. there was a long line that moved very slowly. Armando married Anna (Anne) Dinella. but she didn't sit at the dining table because there was a dish of mayonnaise on the table. Austin was still a strongly Republican ward. Armando and Anna. when developer Henry Austin purchased 470 acres for a temperance settlement named “Austinville. 1930 . Armando and Arthur. When one didn't care for the dinner being served by their mother. In addition to the two couples.Tract 214. The photographs of the wedding couple and the groomsmen and maids of honor indicate quite an elaborate affair. cousin Joan Marie. 247. Dinella would come to a party. Arthur and Josephine. and her husband Glen. Ohio St. probably influenced by their parents who invested in real estate. in Chicago.215 which is located in the community called Austin216 on the city's far west side. and gracious living.” It goal was to provide home ownership.-168Happily Josephine successfully bore two healthy children: Arthur jr. Waller. It seems that Anna and Josephine had the idea of buying the two-flat.. Dinella reportedly had a heart condition and just sat in a chair. they bought a eight-flat building at 5467 W. and of course he was well dressed. Ward 37. Austin was voted out of the township and into Chicago by residents of other parts of the township. Uncle Art (or 'big Art' as I used to say. When the two-couples moved to the two-flat in Austin. and a twinkle in his eye. 215 Census. and Mrs. a third sister. At the time these two families moved. He usually had a cigar rolling around in his mouth.. West End & N. precinct 39. Apparently there was frequent contact with the Dinella's because when Art jr. Roughly bounded by W. and so allowed to proceed to the front of the registration table for Democrats.hellochicago. When Josephine and Anna had guests. Mayfield Aves. started to talk.Chicago. Block No. and Carol Jean born in 1941. Jr. The two couples. Parkside. Finally an election official came out and asked.217 a neighborhood to which many upwardly mobile Irish and Italians from the inner city were relocating. Austin was created in 1865. 'Little Art or Art. Armando Paolini and Anna Dinella In 1924. My mother recalls that Mrs. she wouldn't (or couldn't) even come up to the second floor.. he could speak Italian as well as English. It was rumored that they practically made the deal before telling their husbands. http://www. Uncle Art said that when he went to register for the first time for a primary election. bought a two-flat at 5324 Crystal Street.) was the most personable and the most amiable of my uncles. lived in the basement apartment. & W. that insisted that they buy and live in the building.com/HistoricPlaces. N. born in 1936. Carol Jean described her childhood as living in one household where the children (her brother Arthur Jr. "Does anyone want to register and vote in the Democratic primary?" My uncle was the only one who raised his hand. Hirsch Street in Austin. and she said it made her sick to look at it. but Carol Jean remembers that it was the brothers.Cfm 217 216 . and herself) could enter any of their relative's apartments as though it was their own. in order to distinguish him from his son. Edith. public amenities such as tree-lined parkways.

” By 1940. yet he carried himself with a military bearing. There was a time when the Republican Party was competitive in election campaigns for local offices. The Democratic ward committeeman was startled. He was hardly taller than his brothers.” but in the 1930 census his occupation is “tailor. even a very low-ranking one. Armando became an Assistant Precinct Captain for the Democratic Party. the furnaces would be shut down for cleaning and he would have to get inside and scrape the interior which had become encrusted. . While his brothers Arthur and Ottie would raise their voices in order to be heard. Periodically.-169In his petition for naturalization in 1927. Armando had a voice that had strength though he would maintain a low volume that would invoke his audience to pay attention. and worked at the water pumping station on Michigan Avenue. My impression of Armando was that he was quite handsome. There's little doubt that he had to work hard and deliver a majority vote for the alderman even before he achieved being Assistant Precinct Captain. and sent a flunky to Armando telling him that he wanted to see him. There was a lot of competition for such a job. Armando lists his occupation as “insurance. and successfully carried the precinct for his candidate. but had a rather severe demeanor: he hardly smiled and rarely laughed in a jocular fashion. In one campaign. Probably not a fun job! He did study and did good work at his job a well as being a precinct worker. Armando worked as a Republican precinct worker. and it was essential to do the political work in order to become a city employee. Chicago affords such opportunities. across the street from the famous water tower which is one of Chicago's landmarks. His first job in the Water Department was cleaning out the big furnaces. his movements were slow and dignified in the manner described by Dante as one who is due honors. Armando and Anna had two children: a son Aldo for in 1925 and a daughter Joan Marie born in 1935. he had become a chief water engineer for the city of Chicago. He had a great personality and established a good rapport with voters in his precinct. And I often observed deference toward him by his relatives.

considered to be one of the best in Chicago at that time. she didn't quite understand what the various grades meant. but fail in history because of not doing any homework. a lovely school. I never committed myself because I knew my poor academic grades would make me ineligible for the team.. They asked if I were going to go out for the team at Austin. Emily. and the doctors operated a second time. Altgeld Street. He died on the same day of the surgery of “surgical shock following operation for removal of sarcoma of the colon. One of the times. I constantly remember those wonderful years with him. my father’s brother Aldo became ill.-170Aldo Paolini (I) In 1925. now consisting of Beatrice. I said it meant "fine." My sister shouted to her:" ‘F' means failure!" . This apartment was also in the Austin area. I was always failing in one subject or another. which was cancer. He continued to suffer. she determined that she could afford a nicer apartment. and Otto. 1925 at the age of 22. my father describing him writhing in agony on the living room couch. Beatrice purchased a piano and had Emily take piano lessons. and when she asked what "F" meant.. he took some old baggage with him. I was very proud to be a student of this school. He underwent surgery for appendicitis. Now. probably about 1922. He writes: I was very happy to find that I could enroll at Austin High School. The school building itself looked like a fortress or castle. The baseball coach saw me play basketball on the intramural team and asked me if I wanted to go out for the school team.” He died on September 10. With her greater income. and by this time she understood a little English. I would pass in English and math.” Beatrice Moves to Austin Aldo Paolini With less room needed and Beatrice making more money. but the cause of his illness. My father wrote in his memoirs: “Even to this day. moved to 5232 W. Adolph. However. when I took my report card home to my mother. The grounds were nicely landscaped with many trees and bushes. And she bought an automobile! My father was quite happy with the move as well because it afforded him a new start to make the high school baseball team. He suffered a great deal. the penalty I paid for not doing my school work was that I was never eligible to play on any school teams. Then I would study to bring my grades up in the failed subject and in doing so. In other words. would neglect the other subjects. and I miss him dearly. I told her that "G" meant good. For the same reason. unfortunately. I didn't try out for this team. she examined it. was not diagnosed. The family. Some of the baseball players at Austin High School recognized me and knew that I had played baseball at McKinley High.

We engaged Husk O'Hare and his band to play. We kept our promise and to this day I don't know any of the facts. especially from the girls who were glad to date most of the fraternity brothers. some originating at the beginning of this century. Our dance was very successful and produced a profit. Because we were well-mannered. The parents were glad to meet all of us and observe our activities which were honest and proper. We didn't need any supervision. He demanded that no one ask why or what the money was to be used for. Ted Weems and Ted Lewis. . the parents of this member would serve refreshments and usually it was quite a feast. Some of the larger and older high school fraternities would give their annual dances at some of the large hotels in downtown Chicago. Any problems were usually minor and of little importance. After our business was completed at these meetings. with big name bands such as Guy Lombardo. This was during the prohibition era. This was a marvelous arrangement. It later turned out that the money was not needed. We respected his request and voted unanimously for his request. None of us smoked and only drank moderately at some special occasions. that under no conditions could he divulge the name of the individual or the purpose. There were many old fraternities at Austin. Fraternity Brothers Girl Friends Red Speer Romeo Navigator Gene Hyer Charlie Hamn Jack Trumbull Don Westergreen Jack Freeman Jud Higgins Don McDaniel Phyllis Freeman Bea O'Rourke Adele Shefte Rosalyn Harris Harriet Hakes Our meetings were held every two weeks at one of the member's homes. something this present generation could imitate.-171Iota Alpha Chi One of my greatest experiences at Austin High was when I was initiated into Iota Alpha Chi. a new fraternity with only eight members. All the parents were delighted to serve us. we gained a good deal of respect. even though it was not discussed among us. I believe each individual. It was located on the shore of Lake Michigan and Paul Whiteman's Band performed there for many years. A most unusual event arose at the meeting just before we made our final arrangements for this dinner. We never discussed this among us. The Edgewater Beach Hotel was probably the best hotel in Chicago at that time. we should give this money to an urgent cause. With this money. and I don't wish ever to know. Out fraternity decided to give a dance to be held at the Edgewater Beach Hotel. when on of the brothers requested that instead of having the dinner. Naturally. The brothers of Iota Alpha Chi were of good moral character. we planned to have a dinner for our members and their dates at some popular roadhouse restaurant with a big band. must have realized that this cause involved someone close to our fraternity. we took turns in having these meetings.

and there was a sign on the doorbell. so it was a difficult time for this family.I'm not sure. He joined the American Legion and was quite active throughout his life. and as with so many jobs then. and Evelyn's younger sister. . Aldo Paolini died in 1940 at age 14. whose name I believe was Anna May. Then Anna May died near the time that Candy was born. I think they were in the upholstery business and were friends of Adolph and Evelyn for many years. and for how long. I guess their voices only had a "top. the fraternity brothers and their dates had the full use of the pool. Army. We also had swimming parties every Wednesday night at Blackhawk Park located on Fullerton and Lavergne Avenues. Many families had to live together like that during the Depression Era. it was not steady income. working for many worthwhile events in the neighborhood and for young people. Our Halloween parties were especially enjoyable." I was quite amazed by the fact that they would yell like that when they wanted quiet for Aldo. "Who is ringing that bell?" at the top of their voices. Adolph worked installing chain-link fences. We knew the lifeguard there who admitted us to the pool even though Wednesday night was supposed to be only for married couples. Aldo Paolini (II) A son was born to Anna and Armando in 1925. but he contracted rheumatic fever. he was given the same ill-fated name of Aldo. Evelyn's Aunt Hattie also lived there.S. When. Evelyn and Adolph lived in the second-floor flat of a two-flat owned by Evelyn's Uncle Pete." We obeyed the sign and did not ring. but while we were there someone DID ring the bell. The Legion rented a store for their meetings. Adolph Paolini Cheryl is quite a few years younger than Elaine--maybe nine years -. Anna May took care of her quite a bit. Anyway. and Evelyn's family had friends who occupied the next store. "DO NOT RING. is not known. I did meet this couple later.-172Our fraternity was constantly involved in many activities. Actually. Adolph Paolini and Evelyn Dassel The only history of Adolph and Evelyn is that reported by my mother: Adolph was in the drum and bugle corps of the U. Since no married couples ever seemed to come to the pool. My mother remembers her visit during Aldo's illness: They wanted to make sure that it was quiet so Aldo could rest. and Joe and Anna both shrieked. so they had quite a houseful and I'm sure quite difficult situations. of course Elaine was a small baby. Then. To honor his younger brother who had passed away that same month. when Cheryl was a very small child.

But her forthright statements were comical as well–though not intended as such. but it probably was in the early 1940's. the women were socializing in the backyard. "You can't believe everything you read." ask Linda of Emily." commented Evelyn. Uncle Pete was a good fellow too. she wasn't reticent about using the N-word. . and Candace. If we were there. We were exchanging greetings and making the usual inquiries of spouse and children. but I hasten to add that I wasn't very comfortable about doing so.-173I don't know just when Adolph started to work for the streetcar company. I was rather shocked at first and unfavorably impressed. and Uncle Pete did very well. In about 1969. as well as his streetcar job." blurted Aunt Evelyn. [This information is all that I heard in bits and pieces. and she was unusually blunt. watching the children play. Apparently. While I didn't and don't condone it. He also had a friend (who rented his first-floor flat) who was a professional thief. and occasionally at Evelyn's flat there would be a load of dresses and coats for sale.] Apparently the card-playing led to loaning money at good rates. My father said that he hardly talked to him as well. Evelyn. Evelyn's Aunt Hattie was a dignified and friendly person. My mother reported that at one family gathering. always very nice. But one time they were riding on their way to work on a CTA bus. For example. Cheryl.'s wife). and my father asked about Elaine. but then most people weren't in those days." retorted Evelyn. Still. he had a little store with a back room where mostly streetcar employees would play cards. I came to understand that it was more a part of her vocabulary rather than malevolent prejudice. One of my aunts complemented by mother on her dress. there was a ‘debate. "How is Uncle Charlie doing. "Not well at all. then Adolph talked the remainder of the trip. "Oh she's had that for years. Evelyn provided plenty of conversation. there was at a large family gathering. Jr. Someone defended their argument by saying they read some fact in a book. he would just walk in and go about his business and not say a word. her father hardly talked. As his daughter Elaine reports. and Linda Flowers Paolini (Arthur. causing Aunt Emily to spin around in stricken grief. although I don't think I ever heard him speak to a soul. even to her. She once uttered words that were wiser than she may have realized. and I was in a small group composed of Emily. At an extended family gathering at our home in Northbrook in the 1950's. As if to balance the act.'. His work was in the barns in the maintenance and repair division. and I bought several dresses and coats there." Adolph and Evelyn had three daughters: Elaine.

My father could not find a job." or something to that effect." My father was startled and a bit insulted that someone thought he was capable of such dishonest behavior. . round blob hanging from a tree limb. The CCC's mission was two-fold: to reduce unemployment. there were also local men–mountain men–who provided. When one of them came upon a large. and he was stationed near the town of Tillamook on Mount Hebo. and to preserve the nation's natural resources. to lessen the burden on his mother.’ In other words. he was to call the bank. The first time he was told of this procedure.. Civilian Conservation Corp It was the heart of the Great Depression: 1933. what today’s bureaucrats would term. and then hurling it a second time with the same result. we're worried about you staggering in here claiming that you were robbed when in fact you stashed the money for yourself. especially among young men. sometimes including money. the city slickers and the mountain men were ‘chewing the fat' when the conversation drifted to expertise with an axe. While the army and National Park service personnel operated the camp and supervised the company. "You think so. Sitting around the campfire one evening. he joined the Civilian Conservation Corp. ‘technical assistance. luckily he Tillamook. "We're not worried about anyone robbing you. he responded. "Pretty lucky toss. they showed the corp members how to swing an axe and use a saw. he helped my father get a job at the bank as well. the company was comprised solely of young men. my father did graduate from Austin High School in 1928½. While the supervisors were army and/or National Park Service rangers. My father told several stories about his year in the CCCs. One of the mountain men swung his axe and flung it where it stuck in a tree. he obtained his jobs through friends. and a bank guard was sent to accompany him.-174My Dad's First Jobs Despite his poor grades. Inducted in Chicago.S. My father described his job as a courier--collecting and delivering documents of financial transactions. "How would anyone know that I was carrying money and attempt to rob me?" His supervisor responded. he took a swing at it with his axe." said the mountain man. company member it could find. The axe-swinger was stung the most. his company was sent by rail to Oregon. The main task of this company was to clear forest for the creation of roads that would allow firefighting men and equipment to reach forest fires. The bees swarmed out of the nest and attacked every Otto Paolini in CCC camp. and city slickers at that. and while he was working at the First National Bank of Chicago. I'll share two. Oregon survived. retrieving his axe. In almost every case. He now entered the workforce. Jack Trumbull was a high school classmate at Austin H. When money was involved. and so. said one of the city slickers.

My father apparently made good money for Depression days. but my father had unbelievable stamina all through his life. He was a garage attendant. Florida. Such work is back-breaking to say the least. "Buy some land down here. and so when a guest and his/her dog would approach the elevator. When Charlie and his mother first went to Florida. Needless to say. providing valet service to the guests. But my father was homesick. Miami A fraternity brother named Charlie Ham had established a construction and/or real estate business in Miami. the mixture didn't harden. Naturally the dogs grew fearful of the elevator operator. then hauling the cement mixture in buckets up to the roof and spreading it. and so he would open the back door of the building and literally fling the dog into the alley. all the tiles had slid off the roof. the dog would resist and cower. Pleased to accept the tip. my father returned home and found a job at the Murray Hills Apartments. he went to Miami in order to work construction. and the next day when they arrived. a luxury apartment building on Chicago's north Lake Shore Drive. then hauling a batch of tiles up and laying them. Needing a job and invited to stay. One of this jobs was laying tile roofs. . that is. the guy mixing cement was told the ratio of sand to cement. and he returned to Chicago. The land that Charlie advised him to buy is now incorporated by downtown Miami. maybe 1:3. The would explain and partly apologize: “Fido is so afraid of the elevator. the elevator operator was none to crazy about dogs. His best story for this job was that the guests often asked the elevator operator to walk their dog.-175Murray Hills Apartments After one year. Imagine doing this work in the summer Florida sun! My father recalls that on one of his first jobs. my father had driven down with them." advised Charlie. The tiles are half round tubes and about a foot and half long. Overlooked was the fact that he used a different shovel for each ingredient–shovels of a different size.’ not realizing that it was really the elevator operator of whom the dog was fearful. Laying tile roofs included mixing cement.

his relatives. and I liked him too–I thought he was a very interesting person. When my mother graduated in 1938.218 a small town in southeastern Minnesota. Emily invited me for dinner. I guess Dad liked me pretty much right away too. I didn’t realize her given name was Isabel until I was in my twenties. Sawyer. and that's the story Dad likes to tell about how I ate the spaghetti. All the relatives on my father’s side called her Harmony. Then I think Dad took us to a ballgame or maybe more than one at Mills Stadium. with breakfast included. and in 1936 he died. 6232 S. Her father. So we started dating and dad took me around to meet his many friends and later on. He and Bill had been in the CCC together. so it seemed like it would be a good move for me. Bill thought Otto was a wonderful person. She then writes of her meeting and courtship with my father: Dad and I met in the fall of 1938. and even had seconds (actually I had a second helping as Apparently my father gave my mother the nickname of “Harmony” after her hometown. but in the Great Depression. as he worked there as a cashier on weekends. Isabel Flavia Daniels Now it happened that Otto had an insurance call to make somewhere on the south side and he was early. Otto decided to stop and visit him. University Avenue at the time. and since Bill lived on the south side. Humboldt Park Boathouse and Lagoon Then it happened that Bill went to Florida in search of a job. At that time. Jack Trumbull's grandmother had a room for rent in her house at 420 N. but quit soon thereafter in order to take a position at the Retail Credit Company (now Equifax). was even less than the $3. 218 . and Dad wasn't overlooking the fact that it would be more convenient for him. and worked in the office of the Retailers Commercial Agency in the loop. he had lost the business. and the four of us would go out. had been a successful businessman. she moved to Chicago to enroll in the Moser School of Business. I guess Otto made his business call and then drove Bill over to my place as Bill and I had a date. I was dating a boy named Bill Knaus at the time. Herb Daniels. because he made arrangements to date a girl he knew who lived on the south side. I recall Dad and Marge played tennis one time and Bill and I watched. Marge Murphy. Her mother moved to Chicago about a year later in the hopes of a new relationship. I lived on the south side of Chicago. sort of an older brother type who was a good friend.-176Isabel ("Harmony") Daniels My mother was born and raised in Harmony.50 I was paying. and the rent.

We stayed at the Schroeder Hotel. Mrs.50 a week then (I had been paying $5. When we first moved there. I still worked at Retailers Commercial until I was pregnant.org/wiki/Pitney_Bowes . Then after the spaghetti.S. that will be $5. The U. If we had spaghetti. Otto was still working as a salesman for Lumberman's Mutual. with patent attorney Eugene A. the United States House of Representatives passed a bill authorizing mechanical stamps on First-Class Mail. she congratulated us and said. but that was all commission and not too reliable an income. Rummler. with a lagoon which was used for ice skating in the winter and with pretty landscaping and walks. that we were married and Otto would be living there also. George Street. isn't that nice!" Then she added very politely. In 1908. I decided I would prefer living alone. founded the Pitney Postal Machine Company. English emigrant and founder of the Universal Stamping Machine Company Walter Bowes began providing stamp-canceling machines to the United States Postal Service. postmarking and cancellation. the two companies merged to form the Pitney Bowes Postage Meter Company. which is the spin he likes to put on it). Bowes moved his operations to Stamford in 1917. but quite nice. I had never heard of such a thing. and on April 23. a rooming house. Olsen. We even went all out and had dinner in their dining room with orchestra and all.00). Pitney-Bowes Mailing Machine 219 In 1902.219 which paid a very small salary but at least it was steady and we could manage. I lived at Grandma "Mac's" for maybe 10 months or so. On March 15. Dad and I decided to get married. they all laughed at me and I felt a little embarrassed and stupid. Emily brought out a roast and potatoes. Olsen. 1920. with the goal of producing a machine that would combine Pitney's "double-locking" counter with Bowes's system for wrapping postage payment. Arthur Pitney patented his first "double-locking" hand-cranked postage-stamping machine.. Well. Humboldt Blvd. 1920. and Pitney subsequently traveled to meet Bowes. that was the meal. "here's my fifty cents" which of course is one of his jokes. Not too long after I moved here. Humboldt Park was lovely at that time. Mrs. Dad always says that he replied. People would always stop and admire my beautiful baby. a complete meal.wikipedia. "Well. and although she was nice. A rapid increase in mail volume in 1919 made the Post Office more receptive to metered mail. You were born and I loved taking care of you and wheeling you around in the buggy. We were married by the minister of the Austin Methodist Church in a private ceremony attended only by the minister's lovely wife and daughters. We stayed at Humboldt Boulevard a short time and then rented the attic apartment at 4855 W. "Oh. and I wanted to be agreeable--not that I was a glutton. so I moved to 1647 N. Then. in 1941. Post Office approved their postage meter on August 25. http://en. and. owned by a Swedish lady. Our wedding trip was to Milwaukee in a terrible snowstorm. Dad got the job with PitneyBowes. Milwaukee's finest and quite beyond our means--really. When we told our landlady.-177they encouraged me to. 1920.

August 10. Emily had not dated much before meeting Charlie. he rented a room for the reception at the Premier Hotel on the near westside of Chicago. . For one of the dances. 221 My mother remembers Emily sadly remarking while she was in hospital. Emily was eager to have children. He was the driver of the wedding party. his mother warned him that much would be demanded of him as "Italian women were highly sexed. happiest. The only incident of this kind–actually just the acknowledgment that discrimination existed–was when Charley and Emily were looking for a house to buy. Susana. They eventually bought a two-flat at 1710 Central Avenue where their children were born and raised. Through his many contacts. While much as been written about prejudice and discrimination toward Italians. Linda Zickgraff He did so despite his mother’s admonishment for when he announced his intention to marry an Italian. Queen of Heaven Cemetery. 2009. Emily and Charlie worshiped her. Anne's–at the same time as I was born on October 8. My father assisted in their wedding plans. and she captivated everyone." 221 220 E-mail response to inquiry by Vazquez. 1940. and she was the prettiest. but he was late to pick up Charlie and his best man. he sold tickets to his sister and her friend." Their daughter Carla was born May 15. Emily and Charlie wed on June 22. 1931. My mother remembers: "Carla was about two years old when I first saw her. and lived for the remainder of their lives. 1937. and he retained a band (most of whose members were members of his fraternity) at no charge. My mother and Emily were in the same hospital–St. Perhaps this minor incident may have strained their relationship. and the Gastaldo Boosters Club. and it was at one of these dances that she met Charles Zickgraff. he was able to purchase flowers at a lower price. Altgeld but soon found a place of their own in Elmwood Park and then in Austin on Mayfield Avenue.-178Emily Paolini and Charlie Zickgraff My father was involved with two organizations that sponsored dances in order to raise money: his fraternity. Having experience in renting halls for dances." Their second daughter was Linda who was born October 11. and she fell in love with him quickly and deeply. "All the other mothers were holding their babies and I had none. Iota Alpha Chi. most intelligent child imaginable. but her first child died ten minutes after birth. neither I nor my cousins have ever knowingly experienced it. 220 The couple moved in with Beatrice and my father at 5232 W. the realtor pulled Charlie aside and said that there were certain houses for which the owner would not sell to Italians even though they might rent to them.

but he seemed a bit rough around the edges. Charlie wasn't there when we arrived. and I think that I was in a back room playing with Linda and Carol. 223 . I got up and walked into the dinning room with everyone sitting silently at the dinning table and staring at me as I walked passed. Probably thinking that something was being said so as not to include him. Perhaps a month or two passed. that he had to have a drink at the tavern before going to work in order to have the courage to work the tall buildings as an iron worker. Charlie often had more than one of each and became inebriated. a condition not viewed favorably by Italians as it was deemed unmanly to lose control of oneself. and an war of words ensued.-179I imagine that Charlie Zickgraff felt like an odd man out among his in-laws. who often talked to Emily in Italian. I didn't think much of it at the time. 222 Husband of Carla Zickgraff. Elaine and Carla. and apparently Emily thought that hard feelings had subsided. As a child and as an adult. Beatrice. the legates of Pope Leo IX realize that they had just inaugurated the Great Schism in the Church in 1054. I played with Linda and Carol Jean. said something in Italian to Emily. From all reports.. and was unaware that diplomatic relations had been severed between the Zickgraffs and my family. who were my age. He wasn't crude. husband of Elaine Paolini. Arthur Jr. he was a German among Italians. And then something happened! It was about 1947. Naturally my father jumped into the fray. he spotted my father and said: "I want that guy out of my house. to wit. but then neither did Humbert and Peter. In actual fact. Someone poked their head inside the room and said that my family was leaving. she succeeded with composure and confidence. Poor Emily was torn between the two factions in defending her husband while still remaining loyal to her family and their Italian beliefs. The first occurred at Adolph and Evelyn's house. who told stories and joshed one another. As told to the author by Robert Genzen. and I admired my older cousins. so I was about seven years old at the time. I always enjoyed visiting my in-laws and playing with my cousins. but when he returned. daughter of Adolph Paolini. Although Catholic. "he was a shot and beer type of guy. She invited my family to a gathering at her house. I was told that there were two related incidents. There was a family gathering at the Zickgraff home. He explained his drinking 223 . I was almost oblivious of relations among the adults. Charlie took offense. possibly saying something that insulted Beatrice." However." Hence our abrupt departure. As his son-in-law Roger Lauten222 said of him.

When he went to Florida. I'm dying" in a somewhat defiant tone while pinching his shriveled skin. I can't imagine Beatrice being completely comfortable after this quarrel. After fifteen years. and she wanted to go to the movies. I had no idea that it was done simply to avoid my father and uncle Charlie from meeting. Such a compromise is truly indicative of those desperate times. Poor Charlie was literally a skeleton. and so Beatrice lived the rest of her life with her daughter and son-in-law in a small. I settled in Chicago in order to attend graduate school.. I have to say that I had/have some sympathy for Charlie's position regarding Beatrice. Whether this situation was the subject of an argument or an underlying cause of resentment and tension is unknown. If he felt it were an imposition. we would occasionally invite Beatrice to join us for a Sunday afternoon dinner. They liked the work. I was quite proud to be given this important responsibility as I thought that it was a demonstration of my parent’s trust . mother and I were living in Northbrook. but Charlie disallowed it. He was dying of some disease but I don't remember which one.-180Elaine Paolini remembers the incident that was the spark the ignited the fire: Arthur Jr. . When my father returned from Florida in 1933. Charlie took offense and harsh words were said. Beatrice could no longer afford her apartment on Polk Street. She deserved better! All diplomatic relations were not broken between the two families. It seems to be the consensus of my mother and Elaine that my father said something to Beatrice in Italian. It is difficult to conceive–and certainly and disconcerting to imagine–these two men occupying the same living quarters for about five years. he lived with Zickgraffs in their apartment on Mayfield Avenue as his mother was living with them as well. and to meet Linda and her husband. Emily helped my mother get a job working with her for Syrena's which was a restaurant and catering firm. After a year or so. When my father. Emily and my mother worked every weekend. When I obtained my driver's license. he was no longer content with the arrangement. Apparently none of the brothers or sister thought to do so. I remember him saying something to the effect: "Yeah. Carla. there is uncertainty as to the cause of the altercation. As one can see. It was the period of the Great Depression and economic necessity demanded compromise. My father said that it concerned the living arrangements of Beatrice and the Zickgraffs. I was given the assignment to drive to Chicago and pick her up. He was a man who looked death straight in the eye without blinking. especially as my mother and father were looking forward to buying their own home. Emily–should have gathered the Paolini family and asked for a commitment of money to provide housing for their mother. I think he– r better. Perhaps this was the first incident as reported by my mother. Upon my return from the military service. and the tips were excellent so they were able to save money. dark bedroom in the Zickgraff flat. and so she moved in the Charlie and Emily. I was invited to dinner at the Zickgraff house. John O'Conner.

Hunting scene design of the iron Relations Among the Relatives For the most part. These physical distances seem to reflect to some degree the social distances of the families. they had very long handles to keep the user from getting burned. the families of the daughter and sons of Beatrice and Alfredo were close and in frequent contact. uncles and aunt by its resting next to my fireplace to remind me of them. sugar. Pizzelle is a traditional Italian waffle cookies made from flour. my father had borrowed this relic of the old country. As mentioned above. Tragically. butter or vegetable oil.224 Pizzele Iron I mentioned to my father that if Linda and John did not want it." referring to the ferrous metal. and the three brothers and sister still maintained contact with their mother. She died in 2008. anise. However.' which I later learned is called a pizzelle iron. my father and I visited Emily who. I was so very thankful and pleased to receive it. like her mother.-181About 1990.com 224 . Linda became afflicted with same disease in 1997 at the age of fifty-seven and had to be placed in a nursing home. Adolph and his family were four blocks miles away from Armando and Arthur and Otto and his family were but three miles away. When I was a child. the families of Armando and Arthur lived in the same building. The Zickgraffs lived only about three blocks away. and we actually made pizzelle in our fireplace in Northbrook. Angela. They had close relations with Emily and Charlie because they all attended the same church and school: St. Illinois. Legend goes that some poor blacksmiths of the region used old railroad nails and pieces of track to forge the irons. Adolph moved about eight miles away and Otto moved twenty-two miles away to the suburb of Northbrook. or lemon zest). Emily had conflicting loyalties. I noticed that they had the ‘waffle iron. Illinois. Obviously two brothers-two sisters families were quite close though they occasionally had their differences with regard to the management of the apartment building. Because they were used over open fires. the two sets of daughters were about the same age. Emily developed Alzheimer's disease and passed away in 2000. In the course of time. “The first pizzelle makers were made of iron. In such a circumstance. Upon their marriages. I would surly like to have it. in the Abruzzi region of Italy. Beatrice. and the children freely visited each others apartments.fantes. that Beatrice had brought from Italy. and flavoring (often vanilla.” Fante's Kitchen Wares Shop www. eggs. called "ferratelle. was staying with her daughter Linda and son-in-law John O’Connor. and I honor the memory of my grandparents. and Linda Zickgraff and Carol Jean Paolini were very close friends. Charlie may have considered himself odd-man-out as he did not attend many of the Paolini social affairs and Emily often went alone.

Anna and Josephine felt that Beatrice looked down upon them–that they were of a lower class. graduation.79.79 that was on-sale for $1. the daughter of Armando and Anna. After Christmas. She pledged to herself that she would not participate in any such an arrangement again. Given the number of children multiplied by number of celebrations multiplied by the cost per gift. Beatrice directed her son to return to his wife and work out their difference. engaged in preparing food or washing and cleaning after the meal.00 was selling for a $1. Otto Paolini perceived a great amount of jealously among the women and backbiting that made him uncomfortable. They both bought one. and not just a token but something substantial. The Dinella were bracciante (laborers) in Italy while Beatrice was piccolo borghese . first communion. it was decided that each family would draw the name of one child for a Christmas gift. and not particularly social. and quite beautiful. Her opinion of the Dinella seem not to have influenced her view of marriage.. and thus found out–and not discreet in mentioning it–that my mother had paid only a $1. My mother said that if they really want something in particular. For one Christmas. etc. My mother drew Joan Marie. was not harmonious.-182Adolph was quiet. but she was Lutheran. It also reflects on Beatrice who.66. my mother did not engage in the competition but being blonde. I wanted a sweater. by other accounts." So my mother went downtown to the Fair store and found a pullover sweater that normally sold for $2. Emily suggested a gift: a child's portable phonograph that normally retailed for $5. Armando appeared at the home of his mother and declared that he could no longer live with his wife Anna. His wife Evelyn more than made up for his silence. Family gatherings were often held to celebrate an event such as a child's baptism. plus the expense of the party for one's own child. The incident reflects on the marriage of Armando and Anna which. No doubt it was this type of pettiness and crassness that my father could not tolerate and therefore was reluctant to maintain close relations with his brothers and their spouses. but was not put to the test as none was suggested. He therefore did not attend social affairs to a great extent though he always enjoyed being with his brothers. Such a celebration required that guests bring a gift. Being rather quiet and shy. not having the best of marriages as well. There seemed to be competition between Anna and Josephine versus Evelyn. Evelyn sent her children to a private Lutheran school (Luther North High School). when Anna and Josephine sent their children to private Catholic school (St. the cost was rather substantial for which none of the families could afford. especially Arthur with whom he like to play golf. Emily had access to shop at the Bargain Room at Montgomery Wards because Charlie's father worked for Wards. To illustrate the aggravations and resentments that often arose. were assembled in the kitchen. confirmation. My mother often said that she wished she could have joined the men as their conversations seem to be much more interesting. she was envied and sometimes the object of catty remarks. Anna harumphed: "Who'd want one of those tinny phonographs. they could out-talk him and at the same time prevented him from socializing with his brothers which probably left him frustrated and furious. Anna went to the store to exchange the pullover for a button-down sweater.g. e. .79. and the next day Emily told Anna of the purchase. they might as well buy it themselves. Apparently Beatrice was not above the fray. One day. my mother described the disagreeableness of one episode. held loyalty and fidelity as supreme values. blueeyes. Angela). the men usually congregated in the living room while the women. As was typical of the times.

-183- Paolini Family at Joan Marie’s Wedding (1955) .

-184- .

-185- Armando Paolini and Anna Dinella Josephine Dinella and Arthur Paolini Isabel Daniels and Otto Paolini .

-186- .

The Del Vecchios and the Del Grandes maintained contact by post and they visited each other. While they had moved to Chicago. Illinois. My father remembers driving around town with their youngest son. and Gemma Castricone Building permit N546 dated November 13. Angiolina Del Grande who had married Carmino Alfano. Illinois. their second youngest son Albert and his wife Mary Laframenta. Angeline (Nean) Alfano. the second oldest daughter of Carmino and Angeline Alfano. Don Francesco and his wife Gemma moved to Oak Park. 225 . probably at the same time as the Del Grande family. block #1. Today. In the period from about 1915 until 1931. Wenonah Avenue. their youngest daughter Lily. they had returned to Utica where they raised seven children. had married Dominic Del Vecchio in Utica. their two daughters. Wenonah Avenue. and their daughter Mary Ines Del Grande and her husband. In the photograph here. He apparently had many scrapes with the law. Oak Park. at various times it was the home of Don Francesco and his wife. tree-lined street in a residential neighborhood not far from the east-west lanes of the Eisenhower Expressway. their eldest son Hugo. Many of the photographs of Del Grande family members were in the possession of the Alfano families. Ethel and Bernice. but then moved to St. New York. Anthony Sirimarco.' The Del Grande also maintained contact with their third oldest daughter. and their grandaughter. Louis Missouri as shown by the 1930 census. My father tells of taking his mother Beatrice to see her sister in St. and it is recorded in the 1930 census that Paul was in the St. on file at the Buildings Section of the Village Clerk's Office. Their second oldest daughter. and they had relocated to Chicago with the Del Grande family. Gemma. Oak Park. a town that bordered the western boundary of the city of Chicago. Jack Dempsey. Wenonah is a beautiful. It is believed that they initially rented an apartment until they had their new house built225 at 921 S. Louis. Louis city workhouse as a ‘prisoner. [Frank] Paul Del Vecchio.-187Chapter 17 The Dissolution of the Del Grande Family As stated earlier. Gemma Castricone [Del Grande] is with Angeline (Nean) Alfano. Gilda. They lived in Chicago for about fifteen years as the 1920 census shows that they lived at 512 Centre Avenue (now Racine Avenue). who greeted many police officers that they encountered. 1914 for 921 S. Emily Paolini. section 18. Illinois listing Francesco Del Grande as the owner and Borecca as the contractor for lot 43 & 44.

Sister Wilma took a vacation to Costa Rica and stayed ten years. community informed of what was happening in Costa Rica and kept the Costa Rican community alerted to what was happening in the U. Joseph Convent 226 where she was ordained June 25. Therefore it is not entirely certain that this was the cause of the dispute. A portion of the building has been converted to apartments for seniors. Nothing is reported as to the circumstances or cause of death. the Sirimarco family had moved to the house next door at 919 S. May 2007. or even notice of this bequest. Wenonah. She learned how to operate a short-wave radio and by this means kept the U. Sister Ruthelda.-188Also mentioned earlier. Sister Wilma On January 4. December 11. it occurred prior to 1935. In 1974 Wilma returned to the United States. only Don Francesco and Hugo resided at 921 S. more accurately. the census records Hugo was working as a tailor. Roosevelt Road in Oak Park. Jude to have Sister Wilma draw their blood. undated. and from 1918 to 1964. Jude her work place. “Sister Wilma Del Grande. and taught Spanish. Many sisters have memories of having to go to St. received in an Email from Mary Ann Eichenseer. the Del Grande family lost is matriarch.” Georgia Pabst of the Journal Sentinel. Wenonah Avenue.she then received her a degree from Marquette University as a licensed medical technician. she made the former St. Joseph Center and continues as a residence for nuns of the order of School Sisters of St.. However. The increase in the size of the family–the birth of Bobby in 1920 and Angelina in 1922–probably warranted a home of their own. Francis. 2011. She died at the age of seventy-four. though Hugo is classified as the head of household. and that it caused him to move his family from the neighborhood on Wenonah to an apartment at 6909 W." there is the entry "Same Place. By 1940. “School Sisters of St. community. Carol Jean Sirimarco reports that the dispute was due to the award of the house to Albert and not Hugo. 1931. Francis to build apartments for seniors: 72 units planned for campus on Greenfield Ave. and therefore unable to work. By 1930..S.. Don Francesco had developed glaucoma.S. "In What Place Did This Person Live on April 1. so far in advance of his relocation and later passing. the family is listed at this address. and so Anthony Sirimarco made a good income. 227 In 1964. It is believed that the dispute involved Albert. Lily Del Grande enrolled in St. or. Gemma Castricone. From Robert and/or Angelina (Ann) Sirimarco. 227 226 . The 1920's was the age of jazz and musical theater. She also taught chemistry and microbiology to aspiring nurses attending Sacred Heart School of Nursing. Her biographer writes: . Francis. the oldest son.” School Sisters of St. She took. Sometime between the early 1930's and the early 1940's. 1935. 1918." If there was a connection between the dispute and their relocation. it is reported by Dorothy Mae Del Grande [Molenhouse] that a dispute arose among the Del Grande siblings. The convent was later called St. was given. In the 1940 census. It is strange that Don Francesco would have made this bequest. the name of Wilma. and in the column entitled.

publish and declare .00). FIRST: I direct the payment of all my just debts. "When the old man (his father) dies. expenses of administration and funeral expenses. but page 38 was duplicated while page 36 was missing. Chicago. devise and bequeath to the SACRED HEART SANITARIUM. but one of the family jokes was that Hugo always carried a $50 bill. he would pull out his $50 bill and offer to pay. and to erect a Mosoleum (sic) upon said plot of ground for my burial in said Mosoleum (sic). to purchase a plot of ground in Mt. Isabel Daniels [Paolini] reported that Hugo often remarked that. County of Cook and State of Illinois. of Milwaukee. and he is always well-dressed in all the photographs of him. and as such attests as to his good character. As described below. As fate would have it.this to be my Last Will and Testament. Wisconsin. 230 229 228 Or so my father. on June 7. Hugo Del Grande He died of rheumatic valvular heart disease according to the certificate of death issued by the Department of Public Health. for said plot of ground and Mosoleum. Perhaps those heartless words got back to Don Francesco.00). In order to determine the transfer of the deed of 921 S. 1943.. and when members of the family would go out for ice cream or a drink. . I am going to do thus and so with the house. Carmel Cemetery. 2013. Just prior to has passing. November 3. hereby revoking all former Wills by me at any time made. as soon as practicable after my decease.. IL 60622. SECOND: I direct my administrator here in after named. and as one can see from the accompanying photograph. Of course.-189My mother. being of sound and disposing mind and memory. HUGO DELGRANDE. and it is believed that page 36 contains the transfers for lot 43. Otto Paolini. he made a very noble gesture in his passing. Wenonah. do hereby make. State of Illinois.000. he dressed quite fashionably.229 It is also possible that there was another reason that may have strained relations with his father and brother: Hugo was a homosexual. block #1. so he would have to apologize and put the money back in his pocket. THIRD: I give. Hugo Del Grande composed his will in which he declared the following: I. Karen Alfano and I visited the Recorder of Deeds of Cook County at 50 West Washington Street. section 18 ). for it is believed that he bequeathed this house to Albert. Hugo Del Grande was a tailor. (43 & 44. 230 As was his father. and to expend the sum of Five Thousand Dollars ($5." Apparently he said this in such an unfeeling way that it gave the impression that he was looking forward to his father's death. Room 1113. the sum of Five Hundred Dollars ($500. The above paragraphs present a rather disparaging portrait of Hugo Del Grande. Whether or not he was miserly is not certain. Staff persons were able to locate the book in which the transfers for the street/lots. shops at that time couldn't change a $50 bill. It is known that he was a close friend as well as uncle to Arthur Paolini Sr. Hugo died in 1943 228. believed. seven years before his father. of the City of Chicago.

share and share alike: To To To To To To my my my my my my sister. of what nature or kind whatsoever. ARMANDO PAOLINI. residing across the street at 920 S. JR.devise. 233 232 231 As of this writing (June 17. she turned the money over to the Franciscan order. is the grandson of Angiolo (Angelo) Del Grande. Wenonah. both of which bear my signature on the margins thereof. devise and bequeath to my nephew. but it is believed that the Del Grande home was sold. and the Albert Del Grande family returned to the neighborhood. whether personal or real. Having taken a vow of poverty. Apparently the Mother Superior was chagrined by the amount received as she had discounted the charge for the care of Don Francesco. The petition to the court by the executor. Joseph Convent. . 2013). this 2 day of January. 232 Carol Jean Paolini also reports that Beatrice Del Grande [Paolini] was required to identify the corpses of those who were to be entombed. no will has been located. nephew. the sum of ' One hundred Dollars ($100. New Jersey. sister. was submitted on April 13. 1945. Thus Don Francesco lived in the sanitarium in Milwaukee. and bequeath all the rest. ADOLPH PAOLINI. 231 FIFTH: I give . GEORGE DELGRANDE. New York. 1950. nephew. Sister Wilma told her Mother Superior that she had to leave and care for her father. Not able to spare her. which was located adjacent to the St. of Jersey City. to the following. When Don Francesco died in 1950. My mother reports visiting the Del Grande house in the early 1940s and seeing Don Francesco in his bed. This. ARTHUR PAOLINI. MARY SIRIMARCO. Illinois.00). sister. ANGELINA ALFANO. my Last Will and Testament. 1944. Hugo then moved in with his sister Ines and brother-in-law Antony Sirimarco next door at 919 S. this page included. GILDA DEL VICCHIO (sic) of St. A. ARTHUR PAOLINI. he left money to her. of Chicago. Hugo was not entombed until March 30. Again we have no dates or exact chronology of events. Wisconsin until he passed away. Francesco Paolo Del Grande died on December 4. and that this was especially distressful for her. According to the records of Mount Carmel Cemetery. presumably Gemma and Donato. to be the executor of this. Wenonah. consists of two (2) typewritten pages. of Utica. Louis Missouri. 1943. my Last Will and Testament. Dated at Chicago. and request that he shall not be required to give any bond to act as such executor. nephew. Mother Superior told Sister Wilma to bring her father to live at the Sacred Heart Sanitarium. and so it may be that the mausoleum was not completed until that time. residue and remainder of my property. Perhaps Sister Wilma understated her father's financial position. 233 George Del Grande. the brother of Don Francesco Del Grande. . D. Jr. Illinois. SIXTH: I nominate and appoint my nephew. Arthur Paolini.-190FOURTH: I give. He was frail and possibly blind by this time.

234 Sister Ruthelda. having vacationed in the state and liking the weather compared to the cold and wind of Chicago. Grandpa Sirimarco drove them there. he relocated there permanently after the war.a. but was supposedly in remission. Aunt Ann [Angelina Sirimarco] told me of when Gilda came to Chicago for a State Fair of some sort. 1944. Liking the area. Lily. the first of the three Albert Del Grande daughters. True. Clare who came from more affluent families. Mary Laframenta in 1988. Angelina (Ann) joined the Navy during the war and married a sailor man. Carlo Alberto Del Grande died in 1973 in North Hollywood. Both are buried at Queen of Heaven Cemetery in Hillside. Alabama. Aunt Ann went to call Grandpa to pick them up. she went up to him when he came home and he pushed her away. While she mingled well with the students at St. Gilda had been treated for cancer of the uterus. When she married. Gilda returned to St. After her death. Bernice. The ending tale of the Del Vecchio family is indeed a sad one. Illinois. Their son Robert joined the army during the Second World War and was stationed in Colorado for a time. moved to California. His sister.k. 234 In about 1943. Louis and passed away shortly thereafter. When his daughter Nancy was young. . Domenico in April. even offensive. a. She passed away in Aug. and Antonio passed away in 1960 at the age of seventy-three and Maria Ines Del Grande [Sirimarco] died in 1971. Today she lives in Gulf Shores. and their father and mother eventually moved there as well in 1953. She fell down some stairs and injured her leg very badly. Domenico would not let his daughters touch anything that had belonged to Gilda. there was blood all over her dress. Although Gilda was unhappy in her marriage. still her actions proved what her heart was saying. and moved often as his orders dictated. When they went to the ladies room and Gilda came out.-191The concluding paragraphs of the biography of Italia Del Grande. The Sirimarco family remained in Oak Park. biography of Sister Wilma Del Grande . Ethel and Dorothy Mae followed. she was sometimes gruff in her ways. provide a fitting eulogy: Wilma was a simple person who lived simply but was always ready for a good time. but while she would not go overboard in begging pardon for any offense she may have given. she was very much at home with boys and girls who came from the poor to the very poor families. California as did his wife. On Holy Thursday [April 16. 1987] God looked down on Wilma's littleness and loved her and took her to Himself. Dad [Robert Sirimarco] told me that Domenico (Dad always referred to him as Dominick) was an alcoholic and mean to Gilda and the children. and Sister Wilma. She walked with a limp for the rest of her life. The only information we have comes from Carol Jean Sirimarco who probably heard reports from her father Robert who had heard reports from his father Antonio Sirimarco. her husband cruelly referred to her as "the cripple". 1945. she would not leave him. Lillian.

' During a family gathering at our home in Northbrook. and availability to average people that America affords: its art galleries. and unexpectedly. Arthur. Even though the Church had overturned its initial ruling. the beautiful but ill-fated ship that was rammed broadside by the Swedish ship Stockholm near Nantucket three years later on July 25. "I think Chicago best. She must have taken delight in her many other grandchildren: Joan Marie. "Beatrice!" She had recognized her sister immediately. Milan and Venezia as well as Naples and Popoli. The following year. and Armand Roderick. Apparently her sons argued with one another constantly. some of her audience would make a comparison to the United States or Chicago. As a livein nanny. . she had to build and maintain a fire as the same time as preparing the food. Andrea Doria In telling people of her trip. Her nephew Hugo Del Grande died in 1943. he willed her some money. she was able to afford a trip to Europe. Angeline Del Grande [Alfano]. she traveled to Utica. she reported that she was in St. Carol Jean. Illinois. she traveled to Genoa. Beatrice wondered why anyone would use a cumbersome and sooty implement when one could use a clean and easy to use oven in the kitchen. Based upon the post cards that she sent to my family. Not bothering to write. It is likely that they had not seen each other for many years. Beatrice had not attended church since the death of Alfredo when the Church officials had initially ruled that Alfredo could not be buried in consecrated ground for having taken his own life. but she turned sixty-six in 1945 and would have been able to retire from employment and collect social security and possibly a pension.-192Beatrice Del Grande [Paolini] When Otto married in 1939. an onerous and time-consuming task that had no quaint nor culinary appeal. much to her annoyance. she simply arrived at the Alfano’s door unannounced: Angeline opened the door and exclaimed. cultural events. she concluded: "I can do this by myself. In Rome. museums. Beatrice would always insist. Their daughter Carla Zickgraff was born in 1937 and Linda Zickgraff was born in 1940. She certainly retired before 1952 for in that year she took a trip. in order to return to her ancestral home. It is not known when Beatrice retired. It was to be her home for the rest of her life. Peter’s Square and received the blessing of the Pope [Pius XII]. She sailed on the Andrea Doria. Pisa. Accompanied by her sons Armando and Arthur. Elaine. my father was going to cook meat on the barbeque grill in the backyard. the fight to have the decision reversed must have left Beatrice feeling somewhat bitter and disillusioned with the Church. a suburb of Chicago." meaning that she could travel alone. Florence. With this inheritance. primarily Italy of course. Cheryl. She appreciated the many modern conveniences that are sometimes take for granted or derided as ‘commercialism' or ‘materialism. Central Avenue in Chicago. Angela. the three of them traveled to New York City. When living in Italy. St. 1956. Candace. She even accompanied them to their local church. the Zickgraffs and Beatrice moved to 1710 N. During the trip. Beatrice helped raise these two girls. concert halls and the means of getting to them via public transit. New York in order to visit her sister." Only she could appreciate the many attractions.

so I saw how she interacted with her friends and how much they liked and respected her. with whom she was living.com ." Beatrice took my arm and said. I took you to one concert in Grant Park. On the occasion with my parents. "There is a seat here for you–they just said that because they saw the child and thought he would be noisy. "What better place to die than at the opera. I'll have to see [another usher friend]. tried to persuade to stay home. "If you can't get me better seats than these. She would buy a ticket for an inexpensive seat. Her daughter Emily. as was I. keeping perfect tempo. My mother reported: I went to quite a few concerts with Beatrice at Grant Park and at the 8th Street Theater where WGN sponsored concerts by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. She had friends from the clothing factory who also worked as ushers at the opera house. I was probably about six: When you were very small.sillyamerica. My mother tells of this incident of which I vaguely remember." In the end. often after the first act. and then one of her friends would move her in a much better location. James C. her son Arthur accompanied her.com Civic Opera House Auditorium Even in her later years." Civic Opera House www. she continued to attend the opera even though her family didn't think that she should go alone. and of course Beatrice was proud as could be. she complained to her colleague.grantparkmusicfestival." you stood up and imitated the orchestra leader. I took you down to the section where Beatrice and her friends sat. They were so impressed and delighted by this. Her friends immediately said. "There are no seats here. Petrillo band shell in Grant Park circa 1950 www. My mother and father accompanied her to an opera [Faust] one evening at the Civic Opera House.-193Beatrice often attended performances of the symphony and the opera. Beatrice retorted." Of course you were enthralled by the orchestra and when they played Brahms' "Academic Festival Overture.

In January 1969. I didn’t know what to say and so I said nothing. I received a telephone call early the next morning from my cousin Carol Jean Paolini: “Grandma died. The concert started at 8:00pm. but we arrived about 6:00pm in order to get seats on the front row benches as these concerts were free. As there had been twenty-two years prior. Again. I was bewildered. I wanted to comfort her. and there was no reserve seating. It was a beautiful evening. those that I attended were always for people I hardly knew. but it seems that these days there is a service for the deceased in which everyone has an opportunity to offer a eulogy–a remembrance of that person and an expression of appreciation for what they did and for who they were. I may be mistaken. Before this funeral. I don’t remember a eulogy for my grandmother. But I just stared at her. Maria Beatrice Del Grande [Paolini] . a group of about fifteen to twenty aficionados of classical music and the symphony orchestra were already in place. This one felt as though I had lost something–that something had slipped through my fingers.-194About 1968. I visited her a few times. but I hardly knew what to say or ask–another opportunity lost. I took my grandmother to the concert at Grant park one evening. The day after I last saw her. I wanted to ask her if she was prepared. Rago & Sons on Western Avenue in Chicago. so they were more like social occasions. It was as though she had hit me in the forehead. “I die!” she said. “ Bice” they invited us to sit down and converse as we waited for the performance. I couldn’t say much because I couldn’t feel anything. Greeting her by her nickname. and I could tell that my grandmother was in her element.” There was the usual funeral at John A. many of them munching on light fare and sipping wine. I wanted to ask her what she thought of her life. This storia is the best I can do. Beatrice was admitted to the hospital.

Angiola Paolini. her gravestone has not be found. As of this writing. mother of Alfredo Paolini. . is also buried in Mount Carmel Cemetery but not at this site.-195Paolini Gravestone in Mount Carmel Cemetery Baby Zickgraff and Donato Paolini are also buried at the grave site as represented by the two urns.

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Francesco Paolo Del Grande.-197Mausoleum in Mount Carmel Cemetery There are three vaults in the mausoleum. . and Donato Del Grande. together. Entombed are Gemma Castricone [Del Grande]. Ungaro [Hugo] Tarquinio Del Grande.

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there was no doubt that we and they had a different view of religion in general. all their children attended private. we were going to hell. After the Depression and the Second World War. After my father and mother married. but he worked on Pitney-Bowes business machines as a service technician–hardly a white-collar job. etc. we moved to the suburb of Northbrook in 1951. Angela Church. and that’s no figure of speech. and reflecting on their lives–I wish that I had more involvement in my extended family. the Italo-American Alphonse "Al" Gabriel Capone. We did live in a beautiful neighborhood with large homes occupied by families whose heads of household were executives and lawyers.” It’s true that my father wore a white collar. Jack Freeman. and that he and his brothers always got along together. a time when there was still residual prejudice toward Italian immigrants. They were devout believers while we thought they were superstitious. One of my cousins said: “We were blue-collar workers and your Dad was white collar. After about five years there. The last and probably the most significant reason for our residence away from the Italian neighborhood was the influence of my father’s high school fraternity brothers. This rivalry was due. Carla. After graduation from Austin High School. George Street. pent up consumption ran rampant. Linda and Carol were all married in St. Northbrook had a different style than Austin.-199Epilogue After completing the research on my Italian ancestors–reading the history of Italian immigrants. A second factor was my father’s dislike of the rivalry among the spouses of his brothers such as whose children were smarter. in part. Don Westergreen. and these working class Italians who had struggle before and during those periods were now ready. just north of the Austin area. but probably what wasn’t readily apparent is that my father and mother built most of that house. who had a new car. and then returned to Chicago in a Polish neighborhood in a community [now] called Avondale. aunts and uncles. Religion was a part of their life: in addition to attending church. they would all be save. religious school: the Catholic Paolini’s and Zickgraffs to St. they married and moved to the suburbs. Gene Hyer. and the Roman Catholic Church in particular. We lived briefly–less than a year--in Glen Ellen. Charlie Ham. They were WASPS: Jack Trumbull. Angela while the Lutherans went to Luther North High School. While never said it directly. etc. they lived at 4855 W. and then heightened by the connection with America’s most notorious mobster. willing and able to join the middle class. My father attended high school in the mid-1920's. to the times. The four Paolini families and the Zickgraff’s lived within walking distance of each other! Why had we not resided in the Italian neighborhood of Austin as our relatives did? Certainly the break with the Zickgraffs reduced our contact with the family. hearing the stories of my grandmother. We did not attend events at the Zickgraff house and probably avoided those at which Charlie was likely to attend. whether or not they were going to a private school. The Catholic children: Joan Marie. but for us Paolini’s with no religion. And so did we. Yet his fraternity brothers accepted my father as a brother. My father often said that he had the most wonderful childhood imaginable. a private Lutheran school. . my father followed suit.

most of the time I was alone with just my parents. Everyone sat to form one group–men and women together. and I heard aunt Josie (Josephine) screeching in the kitchen and I became alarmed: was a violent argument about to ensue and ruin the occasion? Usually she was yelling at her son Art jr. In contrast. doors. but no: she calmly walked into the dinning room continuing her summons for everyone to come to the table. Once I was sitting at the dinning room table as we were preparing to eat. who was my idol and who I thought was the coolest ‘dude’ to coin a current cliché. The social gatherings in Northbrook were quiet affairs. upstairs plumbing. the others listened. . There was a marked contrast in the social occasions between those in Northbrook and those at the Paolini gatherings. I found that very confusing. the stairs to the second floor and basement were installed. and bathroom tile. Still. but when I actually listened to the words. I think we carried it off quite well. These women were such a contrast to my own mother who I have never heard raise her voice to this day! Often these conversations were carried on while eating buffet style as there were too many people to sit around a table. molding. when we visited at Armando’s and Arthur’s six-flat on Hirsch Street. My mother painted the rooms and molding.. The women were not much different. and everyone had an opinion. and Elaine commented that we were viewed as ‘country cousins’. especially when I attended Glenbrook [North] High School and met the kids from Glenview who were even richer than the kids from Northbrook. I often thought that the men were arguing based upon the tone of their voice. I wonder what my life would have been like had we lived in this Italian milieu in the same way I wonder what my life would have been like had we lived in my mother’s small home town of Harmony. One person talked. primarily Linda and Carol. hardwood flooring. they weren’t. Voices were hardly ever raised except for an occasional laugh. or a Greek city on the Aegean coast of Anatolia–all marvelous possibilities that I can only imagine. and I wanted to watch all three rings: play with my cousins. and my father. And so the conversation ranged across the room with responses coming from every direction. Of course. The equity in the house was not from a large down payment but from sweat! I felt–to a very limited extent--that we were imposters. There were multiple conversations. and there was rough flooring for the second floor. listen and watch the women preparing food in the kitchen. distributed the dirt over the entire lot. In contrast. there was a reunion with some of my cousins. or the town of Popoli in the Abruzzo. Aunt Evelyn was similar in that when she talked or argued–it was difficult for me to tell which–her eyes would narrow and her voice would grate like fingernails on a blackboard. My father installed the insulation. drywall. the Paolini gatherings were like a three-ring circus. The dirt from the foundation was piled about ten feet high in the backyard. In 1994. I loved the fact that there were so many other kids to play with. I always thought of them as ‘landlords’ who owned income-producing property.-200The builder went bankrupt at the stage in which the kitchen was operable. I watched and listened to Art jr. My mother and father both seemed quite comfortable with this class and their life styles. We moved in and I remember sleeping on a bed that was sitting on top of drywall sheets. it was just how the talked. listen to the men in the living room. together with a guy with a tractor and a scoop. Minnesota.

such as the Regina d'Italia by which the Del Grande family immigrated in 1898. It is quite likely that the accuracy depended upon the language by which the ship's personnel communicated with the immigrant.-201Appendix A Manifest of the ship SS Moltke The Manifest A ship's manifest was a list of the passengers on the ship for a particular voyage. eye and hair color sex marital status occupation whether able to read and write [but not what language] one's nationality. amount of money they are carrying. and so this was the source of unintended name changes. such as the SS Moltke by which the Paolini family immigrated in 1906. but. height. immigration officials at Ellis Island did not issue any document.S. It is widely believed that the names of immigrants were changed by American immigration officials. cripple (this information was certified by a doctor). A ship under an Italian flag.S. physical. mental. This Sheet is for Steerage passengers. The top of the manifest form of the SS Moltke states: "Saloon. i. express or implied to labor in the United States physical condition. The only record used was that of the manifest. probably had a German speaking crew. Many immigrants changed their name of their own accord. Department of Commerce and Labor. deformed. which Whether a polygamist Whether under contract. . Not consistent over time. probably had an Italian speaking crew while a ship under a German flag. Ever in prison or almshouse or supported by charity.e. if yes. it was a form prepared by the U. Cabin and Steerage Aliens must be Completely Manifested." This information was recorded by ship personnel. etc. as far as I have been able to determined. and it contained some of the following information: • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • ship name and date of entry to the United States name of passenger age. place of birth last place of last residence seaport for landing in the United States final destination relationship to accompanied passenger(s) name and address of relatives they are joining in the U..

So where were they the remainder of the time? It is possible that they had to wait for processing on board the SS Moltke . The certification. called a "Certificate of Arrival. He was examined by an inspector named English and that he received a ‘Dr. Beatrice and Gemma–and the word ‘ADMITTED' stamped on the manifest line numbers. they will all relate to naturalization activity occurring in 1926 or later.' only Alfredo's name is listed. 1906. the passenger lists were microfilmed in 1942/43. By noting that a given immigration record had been used to support an individual naturalization. the record of meals shows 21 breakfasts. What a frightening experience for them.' The date of the ‘Special Inquiry' is recorded as ‘6/5' or June 5. the annotation served in future to prevent anyone else from using that record for another naturalization. the occupation column was set aside for annotations relating to the verification of immigration records for naturalization purposes. 28 lunches. and the date of verification (1-7-1935). many Special Inquiries and I'm sure they were so far behind that many of them had to remain on board the ship until there was room for them elsewhere. my friend Norma explains: there were many.-202Naturalization I find it quite surprising that this rather sloven and group record became an ‘official’ document that was later used in the process of a person’s naturalization. The SS Moltke arrived on June 1st and the special inquiry as on June 5th. the Bureau of Naturalization was called upon to provide certification of the immigrant's arrival record. My guess is that the number of meals was only while they were in special inquiry. thus they had to have been there at least five days. could be naturalized until the government located their immigration record. Beginning in 1926. perhaps it was six days. In 1926. Notice in the occupation column there is the written notation 11-87889-505-1-7-35 which means that she petitioned in the 11th district (Chicago). Cert. Angiola was not listed as having been selected for ‘special inquiry' but a note on her listing states: ‘senile debility and double cataracts. form number. While the annotations may be found on any passenger list. Beatrice Paolini did not apply for naturalized citizenship until 1935. They may have been in special inquiry only four days and three nights based upon the meal record. On a subsequent page of the manifest entitled. . and 21 dinners for seven people. This change came about in response to a terrible scandal about a number of fraudulent naturalizations." My guess is that he exhibited signs of his stroke. so records of immigrants who arrived earlier but did not begin the naturalization process until after 1942 could not be annotated. no immigrant who arrived after June 29. application number. Since 1906. The reason for the inquiry is recorded as ‘LPC' which stands for "Likely Public Charge. This data raises the question as to how long they stayed at Ellis Island. Thus since 1906. and did so probably in response to the passage of the Social Security act in 1935 with FICA withholding starting in 1937. The ‘SI' stands for ‘special inquiry' and that they had to undergo further investigation. Also. ‘Record of Aliens Held for Special Inquiry. after an immigrant filed a Declaration of Intention or a Petition for Naturalization in a naturalization court. All the verification for naturalization annotations follow a prescribed format containing one or more of the following elements: District number where the application was filed. before or after 1926. and date of verification.' Obviously he was deemed not to become a public charge due to the support that could be provided by his wife and her family. her case number (87889). clerks began to record the verification (record check) and certification activity on each passenger list record." was sent to the courthouse to satisfy the naturalization requirement. the document/form issued (505). If the story of missing the boat due to Arthur being lost. From 1906 to 1926 this activity took place without any notation made on the passenger list. It is also noted that there is a hand-written letters ‘SI' next to each of the adults–Alfredo.

someone (usually someone from an Immigrant Aid Society) at Ellis Island would send a telegram to relatives here in the USA and the relatives would send a letter or telegram back to let the authorities know that they would be responsible and would care for the family being held.’ .-203While the immigrant was held. it is interesting that the category of nationality for the family is not Italian but ‘Southern Italian. The authorities then released the immigrant. Last.

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establish and manage hostels for emigrants. a technical organ under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.2C_1870-1914 Having become a major social and economic phenomenon. Naples and Genoa. Carriers were required to lodge emigrants in case of delay in departure. grant permits to recruit workers for European countries (emigration agencies having been abolished by the law of 1901). fix cost of tickets. and admittedly a very significant one. December 1958. The law of 1901 and subsequent legislation empowered the Commissariat to grant licenses to carriers. In 1903 the Commissariat also set the available ports of embarkation as Palermo. enforcing fixed ticket costs. for a while. Issue 4.-205Appendix B Italy’s Commissariat of Emigration On 31 January 1901 the Commissariat of Emigration was created. providing health inspection for those leaving. “Trends in Italian Emigration. The Commissariat tried to take care of emigrants before they left and after they arrived. http://en.” The Western Political Quarterly. . Elizabeth. Cometti. ensure protection of emigrants on board ships through the medium of traveling commissioners. Italian emigration received special bureaucratic recognition in the law of January 31. Vol. 1901. Wikipedia. excluding the port of Venice which had previously also been used. emigration to Brazil. and give aid and protection to emigrants in foreign countries. to about 5% of the Italian national product. which turned into a constant flow of money amounting. granting licenses to carriers. pp. to unify migration services hitherto dispersed among various ministries. this measure created the Commissariat of Emigration. prepare international agreements on emigration and labor. 11. 820-834.wikipedia. setting up hostels and care facilities and arranging agreements with receiving countries to help care for those arriving. maintain order in ports of embarkation. inspect emigrants on departure. Italian diaspora. and to restore transportation costs to migrants rejected by immigration authorities provided it could be proved that the legal requirements were known to the undertaking before departure. keeping order at ports of embarkation. to meet safety and hygienic standards for transporting both expatriates and repatriates. where many migrants had wound up as virtual slaves on large coffee plantations. suspend emigration. This included dealing with the labor laws in the US that discriminated against alien workers (the US alien contract labor law of 1885) and even suspending. by some accounts.org/wiki/Italian_diaspora#Emigration. provide information. The Commissariat also helped to set up remittances sent by emigrants from the United States back to their motherland.

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1929).-207Appendix C Ethnic Territories of the Near West Side The Jews lived almost entirely below Taylor Street and. p. White (Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Urban Areas of Chicago . to the south of Roosevelt Road. Louis Wirth. . Wlefare Council of Metropolitan Chicago. between 1930 and 1960. Smith and L. Suttles.. T. 17. The University of Chicago Press. Frank Carney “Experimental Area III-X (Addams). 1961). The French Canadians were located mostly around Flournoy and Loomis where their church (Our Lady of Provins) still stands. 1956). Twenty Years at Hull House (New York: New American Library. The Ghetto (Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Chicago.W.V.D. Bohemians. Community Area 28– The Near West Side (1953). This account of ethnic movements has been garnered from Jane Addams. Burgess. Blue Island and Halsted on the northeast fringe of the area and remained there until the 1940's when the construction of the Congress Expressway more or less destroyed their community except for a few night clubs and coffee shops. Ashland and Halsted. and Germans seem to have been more dispersed. the situation changed to what it is today (see map 2). Then. Italians filled up the open spots and gradually moved in until they almost entirely occupied the area between Roosevelt and Harrison. 1968. in later years. The Social Order of the Slum: Ethnicity and Territory in the Inner City . Gérald D. The Poles. E. footnote 4. The Greeks settled around Harrison. ed. 1961).” Unpublished Report (Chicago Youth Development Project.

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Loomis St. Arrigo Park The West Park Commission transferred Vernon Park to the newly-created 801 S.com/index. To alleviate the drainage problem. the statue went into storage. the greenspace was officially Chicago. Forty years later. The park. When the city transferred Vernon Park to the West Park Commission in 1885. which was then experiencing wrenching transformation due to the construction of the University of Illinois’ Circle Campus. rehabilitation began immediately.14 acres the following year. Arrigo argued that Columbus should find a new home in the city’s oldest continuously Italian-American neighborhood. when real estate developer Henry D. deteriorated into a boggy mess as surrounding streets and structures were raised up to improve sewage removal and prevent flooding. Commercial institutions and transient rooming houses took their place. After the building came down in 1959. The park was expanded to its present 6. Gilpin donated the property to the City of Chicago. First exhibited in the Italian pavilion at the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition. dates to 1857. Arrigo served as Illinois State Representative for Chicago’s near southwest side from 1966 to 1973.5369 for the Italian-American community.cfm . the commission filled the artificial lake and raised the ground level of the entire site with additional fill. In 1871. Chicago Park District: http://www.chicagoparkdistrict. IL 60607 renamed Arrigo Park in honor of Victor Arrigo (1908-1973).-209Appendix D Arrigo Park Arrigo Park.detail/object_id/8521FAD9-86B7-4B62AC57-A8007EA1AD51. Chicago Park District in 1934. the bronze figure later graced a second-story alcove on State Street’s Columbus Memorial Building.cfm/fuseaction/parks. too. the modest residences surrounding Vernon Park fell to the flames of the Chicago Fire. the commission undertook extensive landscape improvements and electrified the park. Arrigo was instrumental in bringing sculptor Moses Ezekiel’s statue of Christopher Columbus to the park in 1966. In 1893. The city soon created a shaded "breathing spot" with an artificial lake and a few benches. known as Vernon Park for much of its history.746. A vocal advocate Phone: 312.

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http://www. they do so in the fashion of "pazienza" ." While men mourn. and the saints hear what the bereaved are thinking and feeling. and many Italian-Americans view death as "God’s will. Stapleton Holdrege Funeral Services. it is explained that the death was inevitable. depending on the deceased’s family’s wishes. may the martyrs welcome you on your way. Emotional outpourings can be profuse and the activities around a funeral provide distinct examples of the Italian-American way of ritualizing life events. the priest intones the farewell: "May the angels take you into paradise. Mary. the priest reads from Scripture. where food and/or drink are often served. If the body is present the mass is called a Mass of Christian Burial. At this time. or be part of a bigger ceremony known as a mass. Family members get up constantly to touch and talk to the deceased loved one. The funeral remains very much a family and community event. A funeral reception may also be held after the services. Family members may moan and scream for the deceased throughout the church. Then. the family is on their own for a time with their loved one.com/cultural. and expressionless presence may be their only act of public mourning. It is important to explain the difference between the two basic masses. death is a great social loss and brings an immediate response from the community.-211Appendix E Italian Funeral Customs Religious Customs Catholic: Catholic funerals vary according to individual. the term used is a Memorial Mass. Cultural Traditions Italian: In the Italian-American family. Within the context of fatalism in Catholicism. giving money.patience. and congregating at the home of the deceased. Screaming is an effort to ensure that Jesus.cranstonfuneral. leads prayers and administers Holy Communion. the family will hold a "wake" or "calling hours. the funeral is held. Immediately following the wake or on the third or fourth day. the second or third day after a loved one passes away. It means sending food and flowers. During mass.htm ." More traditional families hold anniversary masses for the deceased and wear black for months or years. The funeral service may stand alone. This is not as common among younger generations." usually held at a funeral home. The real time of sorrow comes at the end of the ceremony when the priest and non family congregation say good-bye to the deceased. If the body is not present or if the cremains are present. family and church. Typically. Their constant. silent.

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Father Smyth introduced the Family Teaching Model at Maryville Academy. along with other programs for young people with intellectual challenges. Mary Training School for Boys Our History Originally called St. With the influx of so many children. Ryan. both of which operated through the late sixties. replacing old dorms with modern residential cottages where the children participated in the running and management of their own homes. our focus is still on children. Des Plaines. Maryville Academy was established in 1883 on 880 acres north of Des Plaines. Through epidemics. As times changed.org/subpages. They took part in chores. the Maryville MISA Program for adolescents with mental illness and substance use disorder in Des Plaines. O.-213Appendix F St. Smyth. adolescents and young adults located in Des Plaines. so did St. The idea was to give these youth an education and the opportunity to learn a trade that would serve them later in life.asp?id=16&parentid=29 . Maryville’s Executive Director. menu planning. created the school as a home for boys . as well as the preservation of the family. under the leadership of Sister Catherine M.294. consultants and counselors. Maryville Academy was always there for children in need.mostly orphaned and roaming the streets of Chicago.S. and the Scott Nolan Acute Psychiatric Hospital for children. Patrick Feehan. grocery shopping. 80s. parenting teens and their children. The orphanage became co-educational in 1911 and eventually included a grade school and a four year high school. Maryville Academy became home to hundreds of children who were wards of the State of Illinois. IL 60016 847. Today.F. world wars and economically difficult times.1999 http://www. © 2010 Maryville Academy 1150 N River Road. and budgeting under the supervision of a "live in" married couple supported by a staff of social workers. Maryville Academy’s innovative programs that incorporate family support include: the Maryville Crisis Nursery and the Maryville Children’s Healthcare Center in Chicago. John P. In the 1970s. under the direction of Rev. 2010 marks Maryville Academy’s 127th year in the service of children and their families. Illinois. Mary Training School for Boys. Mary’s. The first Archbishop of Chicago.maryvilleacademy. and 90s.

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-215Appendix G Descendants of Francesco Paolo Del Grande .

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