What images come to mind when someone mentions Italian immigrants to the United States? If you are like most people, myself included, you imagine steamships and the early 1900s. Typically, what I envision is the iconic scene in “The Godfather, Part II.” Vito Corleone, as a boy, is sitting in a room on Ellis Island looking out the window with the Statue of Liberty reflected in the glass. I believe most people think of such images, immigrants in rough homespun clothes waiting in lines to get through immigration. They are all visions of the east coast, New York harbor and Little Italy.
Since most Italians immigrated to the U.S. in the early 1900s during the Italian diaspora, it is only natural that we all think this way. Unfortunately, this gives the impression that we are new contributors to