by Adriana Albi Davies, Ph.D.
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Giovanni Rosso-He came before 1913. Giovanni married
Tranquilla Mattiussi from Italy, in the Church of Saint Joachim on
96th Street, December 27, 1913. He worked in the coal
mines of the Dawson Bridge area, Beverly, Clover Bar, and also at
Mountain Park [Nordegg].
Rusconi-Giovanni was the one-time proprietor of the Roma
Hotel and European Rooms, both of which were located on the
southside of Jasper Avenue east of 97th
Street. The family was living in Edmonton by 1915.
Franco and Carlo Rusconi-Known to have homesteaded
initially in Naples, Alberta.
Franco (Frank) Saccomanno-Frank
came with his brother, Maurizio Saccomanno, from Italy in
and worked for Ralph Welch for two years in Port Arthur before
coming to Alberta and working in construction. In 1965, Frank and
Maurizio set up Saccomanno Brothers grocery store on 95th
Street. After that they eventually set up Saccomanno Importing
Ltd. wholesale in current location 127 Ave. and 102 St. Together,
with Joe and Maurizio's son-in-law Carmelo Rago, they started
the Sorrento Restaurant in Castledowns.
Maurizio Saccomanno-Maurizio worked for the City of
Edmonton and, then, with brother Frank set up Saccomanno Brother
Grocery in Little Italy. They went on to establish the Sorrento
Restaurant. Maurizio and his son-in-law, Carmelo Rago, started the
Sorrentino chain of restaurants and It's Aroma.
four Sartor brothers emigrated to Canada beginning in the early
1900s. Giacomo in
1908, Giovanni Battista (Tita) in 1911, Antonio in 1914; and
worked in the mines in the Crowsnest Pass, returned to Italy in
1911; returned to Edmonton and was a part of the Venice colony.
Giacomo and Giovanni Battista worked in the mines. Antonio was a
baker who worked near the MacDonald Hotel.
came in 1929 as a "bracciante" (labourer) and was
employed by the C.N.R.
Giovanni and Giosue
Segatti-He started sharpening the knives at the
MacDonald Hotel before the twenties, and then sharpened
construction tools. By the time he retired, he had modern
machinery and sharpened anything through his business; Jasper
Grinders at 9616 - 102nd Avenue. His son Roy came
from Italy and went out to work on the railroad; quit and went to
work at the MacDonald Hotel as a bus boy. He was involved in the
Dante Alighieri Society as Treasurer.
Spinelli-Franco (Frank) Spinelli emigrated from San
Pietro al Tanagro, near Naples in 1951. He was the son of a
local farmer but did not want to work on the land. He chose to
emigrate to Canada and work in the Yukon Territory in the silver
years later, he broke his back at work and the company sent him to
hospital in Edmonton where he remained in traction for a
year-and-a-half. After healing, for a number of years he did
casual labour. In 1959, he bought a small store with his partner
Remiro Zalunardo, on the corner of 95th Street and 108th Avenue
and the rest is history. About 1964, he took over the store
and the Italian Centre Shop grew to a wholesale empire that
supplies stores and restaurants throughout western Canada.
His wife, daughter Teresa and son, Pietro (who died tragically
young shortly after his 32nd birthday in 1996) all worked in the