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"In those days, the river was full of ships and stevedores...": An Exhibit Update!

Dr. Robert Cangelosi grew up in the New Orleans French Quarter in the 1930s and 40s when it was still a largely Sicilian neighborhood, nicknamed Piccolo Palermo. In the below clip from a recent oral history interview, Dr. Cangelosi discusses helping out at his grandparents’ Decatur Street grocery store as a young boy and how his grandfather allowed neighborhood regulars to pay on a monthly credit system.

Our upcoming exhibit, Piccolo Palermo: The Sicilian Immigrant Experience and the Beauregard-Keyes House, will open on July 5th, and will explore how the BK House and its former owners, the Giacona family, fit into the larger history of Sicilian immigrants in the New Orleans French Quarter. Visit the museum this summer to view more oral histories from local Sicilian descendants (including Giacona descendant Rosanna Giacona Shepherd), and to hear more from Dr. Cangelosi, whose vivid childhood memories include stories of Angelo Brocato, family friend “Diamond” Jimmy Moran, and the night in 1919 when his father climbed up on the roof of the family's Royal Street home and witnessed the French Opera House burning.

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