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     Sabatino Roncucci: Oral History Transcript Summary 

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Carlo & Lina 

Rudy & Rita 

Mary Biollo Doyle

Tony Falcone

Bill Nigro

 Sabatino Roncucci

Spinelli Family
Alessandro &
Lina Urso

Fiore M. Vecchio


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  • When questioned whether immigrants can retain the values of the homeland and yet become Canadians, he said absolutely
  • He created the Dante Alighieri Society after being in Canada for only three months to counter the notion that Italy was only about good food; believes that you cannot be a good citizen of a new country if you do not know your own culture; therefore, motivated to create opportunities to understand Italian culture to counter stereotyping
  • Believes in the importance of language retention because "the future belongs to people who can speak more than one language"
  • Believes strongly in working with other groups and has been involved in Edmonton's multicultural community, Northern Alberta Heritage Languages Association, United Nations Association, and many others as both a founder and member; currently is helping Edmonton's Albanian community to set up a Saturday morning language school and curriculum; served on the Cultural Heritage Council of the Province of Alberta (1972-80)
  • Was chairman of the Heritage Days Festival in 1975 and has been involved in the Italian pavilion since the inception of the Festival
  • On the different eras of emigration from Italy, he noted that at the end of the 19th century there was the "immigration of despair" particularly from southern Italy, which was being neglected by the central government; these people were brave and must be celebrated; they came to Canada and worked in forestry, agriculture and the mines (in Italy had never worked in the mines)
  • In terms of his own emigration history-he did not need to emigrate, had an established business; it was his desire for adventure but also his awareness of corruption in Italy that prompted him to come to Canada; Canada was advertising for workers at that time (not interested in educated people); he was accepted immediately because his trade was desirable and did not have to wait a year; he had graduated at the age of 16 with a diploma in design and pattern making from La Moda Maschile school in Milan
  • The day after arriving in Edmonton, he got a job at the Hudson's Bay store and eventually set up his own shop in the Kresge Building downtown; one of his customers was a Vice President at NAIT and he was asked to set up the Tailor Technician Program; went to the garment industry headquarters in Montreal and Toronto to determine the need for such a program and, then, designed the curriculum
  • In 1992 with Dr. Adriana Albi Davies developed a profile of Edmonton's Italian community for the City of Edmonton's Department of Parks and Recreation.

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