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Old 03-05-2011, 08:44 PM
3,806 posts, read 6,041,124 times
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Originally Posted by arosato View Post
i would love to have learned italian in school - as a romance language, it makes it also easy to speak french and spanish.
Spanish and Italian are mutually intelligible at least according to wikipedia (ask me in a year or two and maybe I can tell you from experience), but French is actually fairly different from them both.

The big thing is that in the South the white/black divide was a lot more important than ethnicity. While an Italian immigrant might get crap in Birmingham he was infinitely better off than a black guy born and raised here, and at the same time the Italian guy saw that his kids could basically move into the top class. Meanwhile in say NYC or Philly there weren't a lot of black people until the 20s. The Italians were at the bottom and were pretty much stuck there for generations. At this point since you know the world only sees you as your heritage you may as well take pride in it.
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Old 03-05-2011, 09:55 PM
Location: Cumberland County, NJ
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Another important factor is population. There are a lot more Italians in the Northeastern cities than in cities like Birmingham, AL. They are one of the largest ethnic groups in the entire Northeast. So naturally you would see more organized activities catered towards Italian pride like "Italian American parades and festivals" for example. I assume Italians are not one of the largest ethnic groups in Birmingham.

I agree with what the poster "AuburnAl" said with the black/white divide being more important in the South compared to the North which is more centered towards ethnicity. Most of the Southern white population is made up of English and Scotch-Irish while the Northeast tends be more ethnic with ethnicities from Southern and Eastern Europe.
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Old 03-06-2011, 01:13 AM
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OP may have missed two corporate bankruptcies of the Bruno family and a personal tragedy when almost a generation did not survive a plane crash a couple of years ago. What used to be Bruno's Classic for the golfing community is now Regions' Classic at a different course.

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Old 03-06-2011, 01:24 PM
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My family left the Ensley/ Italian neighborhoods in the 60's and made their way to the top of Double Oak Mountain, some of the cousins, aunts and uncles remained. My grandfather worked as the baker at the Bohemian Bakery until his death in 78, boy he was a helluva baker, originally from Italy and came to Bham in the 20's.
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Old 03-06-2011, 01:52 PM
Location: outside birmingham al
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I saw an old friend at our last HS renunion(banks hs class of 68) the ORIGINAL itallian stallion!!! Johnny Musso
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Old 03-06-2011, 01:52 PM
Location: Rhode Island/Mass
583 posts, read 1,302,029 times
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Italians were one step up from blacks, around the turn of the last century, everywhere to a large degree. Italian 'heritage' was probably off-limits in the South at that time, unlike in the North where it was tolerated. Correct me if I'm wrong. Ciao
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Old 03-24-2015, 07:27 PM
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I just stumbled onto this site, which explains the 5 year gap. The Feast of St. Mark is now an annual event at St. Mark the Evangelist RC church on AL 119. It has been extremely successful, and tickets ($20 adult, $10 children over 5) are capped at 3,000 until better crowd control designs develop. The Feast this year falls on April 25, which is coincidentally the patron's actual feast date.

The Italian American Heritage Society began operations shortly after the last post was written. It is becoming more active and has a decent website.

If you haven't visited "La Storia", the story of Italian immigration into Birmingham at Vulcan, you should. Not just because of this exhibit, this museum is another Birmingham gem.

I was born in NJ to Italian immigrants who arrived around 1915. They did not stress the Italian language for primarily the same reasons all other immigrants did - they did not want to be Italians who happened to live in America; they wanted to be Americans who happened to have an Italian heritage, a strong heritage, yes, but they wanted to start a new life with better opportunities. Another reason was that many immigrants, especially Roman Catholics, did not want to draw attention to themselves over discrimination concerns. My father was 14 when he arrived, and by the time I was old enough to hear him, he had no accent save a slight buzz on some of his "s" sounds. Finally, not necessarily peculiar to our family, we probably had some unsavory relatives whose stories would remain sequestered when discussed in Italian.

Birmingham is becoming a foodie mecca, but apart from Zagat, I don't believe there is yet a 5 star Italian restaurant in the world. Perhaps another form of discrimination, because Italian cuisine is one of the mother cuisines.
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Old 03-24-2015, 07:44 PM
Location: Nashville TN
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Alabama has Italians lol?
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Old 03-25-2015, 09:29 AM
Location: Birmingham
11,787 posts, read 17,180,480 times
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Originally Posted by UKWildcat1981 View Post
Alabama has Italians lol?
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Old 03-25-2015, 10:27 AM
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Alabama has Italians ? That's like asking do people exist.
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