Presentation on theme: "HMS Italian Heritage Club Presents: Interviews with Herrins Italians."— Presentation transcript:
HMS Italian Heritage Club Presents: Interviews with Herrins Italians
Interviews 2005 Steve Coriasco Susan Murphy Carla Pegano-Hays Charles & Carl Spezia Fred & Elenor Salmo
Mr. Coriasco shows us Cuggiono & Inveruno on the map. Over 3000 people immigrated from Cuggiono, Italy and surrounding villages to Herrin Illinois in the early 1900s.
Wine Making and Ravioli Mr. Coriasco remembers bottling the homemade wine re-using Nehi Soda bottle tops. The bottle top press is on the right. The wooden rolling pin was used to score the ravioli before they were filled with ground meat and spices.
Hand Crafts To help make ends meet, the Italian women made lace and embroidered napkins, tablecloths, and pillowcases to sell. They called it cut work as they cut the cloth away from the needle work once it was finished.
Returning to their Roots… Steve Coriasco and his Aunt Jose Pina went back to Italy and met their relatives. Pictured here feeding the birds at St. Marks Square, Venice. It was the trip of a lifetime.
What does it mean to be Italian? It means having heart…taking care of each other, and working hard. - Mr. Coriasco
Why did the Italians come to Herrin? The Italians would do whatever they had to do in order to support their families. The coal mines provided good paying but dangerous jobs. The men would work in 3 foot seams of coal crawling on their bellies. They worked in terrible conditions and many died of Black Lung Disease…including my grandfather.- Steve Coriasco
Carla Pagano-Hays Life centered around the garden, friends, Sunday dinners and making wine (due to Prohibition 1920-1933).
Lets a Mowa da lawn! Grandpa Pagano helped push, guide, carefully clean & put away the mower & roll up the hose. Then, it was time to have fresh tea with sugar and homegrown mint sitting under the tree, relaxing and savoring the work well done; work done together!
Italians brought new foods to Herrin! Italians introduced eggplant, artichokes, olive oil, black olives, salameats & sausages, pastas, raviolis, and fresh bread to the area.
Susan (Merlo)Marlow- Jones Murphy At Ellis Island, the immigration officers Americanized her Mothers family name from Merlo to Marlow.
Hardship in their land… Due to conflicts in Europe Luigi & Louisa Merlo came to Herrin in part to avoid their sons from being drafted. There was little work in Italy and they were leather workers who made shoes. All the farmland was owned by feudal landlords who took most of the profits. So it was better to take a chance in America where there was work.
Susan Murphys Grandparents: Joe (Guiseppe) Merlo and Erminia Cislaghi Merlo Pictured with their two older sons: Giorgio and Franco
Susan Murphys Grandmother: Erminias younger brothers wedding – Carlo. Erminia is the Matron of Honor on the far left.
Susan Murphys Uncles: Erminias brothers Antonio Cislaghi who immigrated to Detroit, Michigan and Batista Cislaghi who remained in Italy.
Family Trees: Elenors parents Mary Lattuada and Emil Cattaneo came from Marcallo, Italy.
A Touch of Holiness….. Freds great- great uncles daughter became a SAINT! Her birth name was Constanza Cerioli.
Constanza Cerioli 1816-1865 She lost three children as babies. When her husband also died, she took her wealth and began caring for rural orphan girls in her home. In 1857, she founded the Sisters of the Holy Family of Bergamo and took Paola Elisabetta as her religious name. In 1962, there were 61 houses with 400 members. She also founded a boys home- Brothers of the Holy family. She wrote the rules of conduct for both homes.
Constanza Cerioli : Beatified by Pope Pius XII on March 19, 1950. Canonized by Pope John Paul II on May 17, 2004. He said that the new saints came to know the true peace which is the fruit of Christs victory over the power of evil, sin, and death.
Charles Spezia… His father was a carpenter in Cuggiono, Italy before he came to Herrin to work in the mines.
Lombard Society Club Frank Emanuel Spezia was the President for 25 years. He was a founding member of the club in 1892. Later, the Cooperative Store owned by the society members was opened to all townspeople. When the store closed they had $80,000 of bad debt from unpaid credit accounts.
Three Generations of Spezia men were members of the Cristobal Colombus Circolo=CCClub in 1901. The club was closed in 1984 due to the lack of membership. Italians had blended in with the rest of the population after WWII and the need for help from club brothers was less.