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Those who lived in Tooele County found work in the mining town of Mercur, an early central location for Italians and the site of one of their first fraternal organizations. The west side of Salt Lake housed a Little Italy around a cluster of shops and businesses that catered to Italian tastes. Sunnyside had its own Italian band, complete with a music professor from Grimaldi, Italy.

Calabrese prepared aromatic bread in these vestiges of their Italian past. I talian immigration was one of the largest influxes of southern and eastern European groups into Utah.

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In the south end of the city, immigrants had truck farms that supplied fruit and produce to the Farmer's Market in Salt Lake City located at South and West Temple. Restrictive immigration legislation of the s had single cut off the flow of Italians into Utah. Italians, salt from the north of Italy, settled there after the strike, moving into businesses and the professions. Italian coal miners played an important role in the Carbon County strike of with labor organizer Carlo Demolli assuming a leading role in the United Mine Workers of America. A sizable of Tyroleans settled in the Ogden area.

Utah's "Junction City" also attracted Sicilian immigrants. Accordion, guitar, and mandolin music could be heard emanating from many italian camps, bouncing with the rhythm of a tarantella or echoing the lyrics of a popular folk song. There is a connection between places of city and places of lake that have withstood the test of time.

Arriving in Utah primarily as single men, Italians, who had intended to be but sojourners in Utah, coming to establish families and settle in the Beehive State.

See: Philip F. Papanikolas, ed. The Tyrolean polenta corn meal remains an important food vestige of cultural tradition.

After union recognition in the s, Bonacci became the first Italian-American elected to the Utah House of Representatives. The Friendly Club of Ogden, organized by those of Tyrolean-Italian heritage, provides a good case in point.


One such establishment was F. Anselmo and Company, located on Rio Grande Street. Section-hands for the Union Pacific Railroad also headquartered in Ogden. Nicoletti even shipped his products to the Midwest via the Union Pacific Railroad.

Family records indicate that many of these Tyrolean Italians first worked in the Wyoming coal mines in Rock Springs, Reliance, and Superior, and then migrated to Ogden where they started farming or business ventures.

Outdoor baking ovens continue to dot the Carbon County landscape. In a similar manner, Vice Consul Fortunato Anselmo, from Grimaldi, Italy, functioned not only as a businessman but as a consular agent who aided Italians and those of other nationalities in the preparation of official documents and correspondence to be sent abroad.

Social and fraternal organizations sponsored dances and dinners, which combined the old value of sociability with the new form of a dance or banquet. In fact, photographs survive that show boccie a form of bowling being played by Italians in the streets. The presence of a monument to the dead of World War I in Grimaldi, Italy, financed by the many Grimaldese of Utah, helps to illustrate the interaction and connection between Utah and Italian history.

Others, including Luigi Nicoletti, ran goat ranches that specialized in cheese and meat goods sold to Italian and Greek miners. New forms of secular celebrations developed in the new environment. In the s and through the s a few new arrivals entered the state, having been summoned by family and friends.

Juliani, ed. Local vegetable gardens still produce spices and herbs central to Italian cuisine.

Pozzetta, ed. Various religious celebrations, such as Carnivale and feasts to particular patron saints, were maintained for a while but often were changed in the caldron of time. Italian musical groups and bands heralded a developing preference for this art form. While some Protestant Waldensians from northern Italy had immigrated in the s after being converted by the Mormon missionary program, the bulk of Italians came to Utah during the period from the s to the s in response to demands for unskilled labor in the mining and railroad industries.

Coal mining, metal mining, work in mills, smelters, and refineries, railroading, farming and ranching, and involvement in service-related industries and businesses provided livelihoods for these immigrants. Anselmo worked to have Columbus Day declared an official state holiday in Religious and secular holidays, feast days, and celebrations, with their accompanying folk foods, provided many Italians with some continuity with the past. Ties between immigrants and their families with those abroad continue in both active and passive ways.

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Tales of folk beliefs and their manifestations, such as the evil eye, continue in the memories of many. In Tooele City many settled in "old town.

Italians in Utah reached an accommodation with the dominant society but have maintained vestiges of their ethnic culture, and many continue in contact with relatives and friends in Italy. Even the outbuildings compare in style and type to those left behind in Italian villages and towns. Monor Alfredo F. Giovanonni, a Catholic prelate from Lucca, Italy, served the Utah Catholic community for some fifty years.

Weddings and baptisms were joyous occasions where folk foods and traditions cemented the immigrant's cultural values. Although halted during World War II, the event is still celebrated in August of each year at Lagoon, providing a gathering place for Italians to celebrate their ethnic identity.

Salt Lake City Italians enjoyed the music of various individuals and bands who often played at dances and celebrations. Disclaimer: Information on this site was converted from a hard cover book published by University of Utah Press in Originally published by: University of Utah Press J. Terms of Use Web Accessibility.

Joseph Barboglio became especially important as the founder of Helper State Bank, an institution that, along with the Stella D'America Lodge, aided other Italians in expanding their economic horizons.