Chicago’s Little Italy

Jun 08, 2013 769

Italian immigrants to Chicago faced many drastic changes in their environments and way of life. The bustling new metropolis was very different from an Italian rural village. The mass of new Italian immigrants who entered the city in the late nineteenth century, primarily men from the small towns surrounding Palermo, Sicily were either single or had left their wives and children back in Italy. Frugality was essential. Most workers saved their wages to repay initial passage money, send funds to needy family members left behind or to purchase land in Italy.

In the summers many Italian laborers lived in railroad or mining work camps where food was provided by the padrone who recruited them. In the winter, workers returned to Chicago where they frequently lived cooperatively, sharing meals and kitchen chores.

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Fonte: Jovina Cooks Italian

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