Italian Heritage Society is looking for stories for our next book: Italian Americans: "We Don't Just Fish!"  2 to 10 pages long; include photos This book is primarily about people who…Learn More..


  P.O. Box 367, Monterey, CA 93942 Scholarship Application   Founded in 1975, the mission of the Italian Heritage Society is to honor and preserve the stories, traditions, and culture of the…Learn More..

Gasper Cardinale HONOREE 2020

Gasper Vincent Cardinale was born in Palermo, Sicily to Vincenzo and Nellina Cardinale on February 14, 1935. At the age of 3 Gasper moved to the United States with his mother and maternal grandfather,…Learn More..

Anthony Davi HONOREE 2020

Anthony Davi was the first-born son to Vita and Guido Davi on February 4, 1939.  He is a Monterey native lifetime resident and business owner on the Monterey Peninsula.  Growing up he lived…Learn More..

Julie Ann Lozano HONOREE 2020

Julie Ann Lozano is a seriously committed community volunteer in Monterey County.  She was raised by her father who modeled civic awareness for her.  When he was diagnosed with ALS, Julie Ann…Learn More..

Mary Arancio Managuerra HONOREE 2020

Mary Arancio Manuguerra grew up in the fishing community. She was born in Monterey on June 20, 1948 to Diego and Francesca (Chicchina) Arancio.  Her parents were born in Isola di Marettimo, Sicily.…Learn More..

Vince Ferrante Grand Marshall 2019

  It all began in 1899 when my Nanu, Vincenzo Ferrante, immigrated to Black Diamond (Pittsburg) California. He arrived days apart with his half-brother, Pietro Ferrante, who was in Isola de Femmine…Learn More..

Biography of Antonio (Novo) Nuovo

  The life of Antonio Novo has its beginning on December 5, 1897, in San Vito Lo Capo, Sicily.  His parents were Giovanni Novo and Caterina Alastra Novo. His siblings were brothers Francesco…Learn More..

Giammanco, Antonino 1886– 1973 and Phillip Giammanco 1919–1989

My grandfather was born Antonino Giammanco on December 4, 1886, the son of Filippo Giammanco and Vincenza Randazzo. We are unsure whether he was their actual son or if he had been dropped on their porch,…Learn More..

Crivello Joseph G. 1907- and Frances M. Crivello -1912

My parents, Joseph G. and Frances M. Crivello, were born in 1907 and 1912, respectively, in Pittsburg, California. Their parents immigrated around the turn of the century from small fishing villages…Learn More..

Scardina Santo 1882-1955 and Maria Scardina 1891-1967

Our grandfather, Santo Scardina, was born on March 20, 1882, in San Nicola L’Arena, Trabia, Sicily.  He was the son of Pietro Scardina and Angelina Balistreri and the sixth child of ten. Grandmother…Learn More..

Mangiapane Alberto 1910-2000

  Alberto Mangiapane was born January 7, 1910, in San Vito Lo Capo, Sicily, to Pietro and Libornia Aiuto Mangiapane.  Alberto, who was called “Baetho”, began fishing in Sicily at…Learn More..

Where Have all the Sardines Gone ?

A pictorial history of Steinbeck's Cannery Row & Old Monterey's Fisherman's Wharf & Sardine Industry.Learn More..

The Fisherman's Problem

The book covers the Ecology and Law in the California Fisheries from 1850 to 1980.Learn More..

Cannery Row

This books covers the History of John Steinbeck's Old Ocean View Avenue, photography from the Pat Hathaway Historical Photo Collection.Learn More..

The Fisherman's Children

Focus on the children of the Italian fishermen.Learn More..

Shaping the Shoreline

This book covers the Fisheries and Tourism of the Monterey Coast.Learn More..

Italians of the Monterey Peninsula

Arcadia Publications format the book covers the following topics. 1. Italian Migrate to Monterey 2. Canneries and Wharves 3. Fishing Boats and Nets 4. Santa Rosalia Festival & Blessing of the…Learn More..

Monterey's Waterfront

Arcadia Publications format covering the early days of Monterey's Waterfront.  Tim Thomas of the Monterey Maritime and History Museum and Dennis Copeland from the City of Monterey Historic Room…Learn More..

Pioneer Italian Fishermen of Martinez

This book is a must for those who are doing genealogy of their family roots who migrate to Pittsburg to fish.  There are over 68 family genealogies listed, quite extensive, a must have.Learn More..


Arcadia Publications book format covering the town of Martinez, California.Learn More..

A History of the Commerical Fishing Industry of Pittsburg, California

The booklet covers the early historical background of Pittsburg, Ca. and the fishing industry. The booklet is available from the Pittsburg Historical SocietyLearn More..

Pittsburg, California

Arcadia Publications the story of Pittsburg, CaliforniaLearn More..

A City By Another Name

A History of Pittsburg, California and surrounding areas. 1.  The Land of the Coyote, the Bear and the Eagle 2. El Rancho Las Medanos 3.New York of the Pacific 4. Black Diamond 5. Cornwall 6. (Isola Delle Femmine II)…Learn More..

Agliano Nat HONOREE 2012

Nat's parents Frank and Mary Agliano moved to the United States in 1920 from Siracusa, Sicily. They settled in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania where Nat an only child, was born on February 18, 1932. He…Learn More..

Aiello Erasmo HONOREE 2018

Erasmo Aiello Erasmo Aiello, or as some know him, Orazio Aiello, is the owner of Palermo Bakery and a professional tenor. Erasmo got his start in the bakery business working in the family bakery…Learn More..

Aiello Gus HONOREE 2016

Gus Aiello Sr. was born in Monterey, California, to Erasimo Aiello and Mary Bruno Aiello on November 30, 1931. He is the seventh child of eight, three girls and five boys. Gus grew, up on Larkin Street…Learn More..

Albert Dan Sr. HONOREE 2017

After more than 25 years in public service, Dan Albert retired as Mayor of Monterey in November 2006. He held the position of Mayor for 20 years, longer than anyone else in Monterey's 225-year history.…Learn More..

Ausonio Nancy HONOREE 2010

​The only child of Italian immigrants, Nancy was born and raised in Monterey where she graduated from San Carlos grammar school and Monterey High School. In 1985 Nancy helped establish the Friends of…Learn More..

Bain Marietta Marcuzzo HONOREE 2018

Marietta Marcuzzo Bain Marietta was born in Monterey to Louie and Fay (Russo) Marcuzzo.  Along with her Sister, Joanne and brother Louie, the family was fortunate enough to be able to reside…Learn More..

Balestreri Ted HONOREE 2018

TED J. BALESTRERI  In 1957, Ted moved with his family from Brooklyn, New York, to the Monterey Peninsula. A 1958 graduate of Carmel High School, he attended Monterey Peninsula College and graduated…Learn More..

Benech Mary HONOREE 2013

Mary Melicia Benech, the daughter of Salvator and Angelina Melicia, was born on June 21, 1927 in Monterey, CA. She was one of five children, brother Ted (deceased), sister Rose, her twin sister Louise…Learn More..

Brogno Frank Paul HONOREE 2008

Frank Brogno was born in the province of Cosenza in the region of Calabria in southern Italy to Maria Assunta and Pietro Maria Brogno on January 1, 1922.  At age seven, he and his mother were…Learn More..

Bruno Cosimo "Gus" Peter

Cosimo "Gus" Peter Bruno, Notes from Interview 6/19/02 Interviewed and written by Linda Bruno, Daughter-in-law Cosimo "Gus" Bruno was born in Pittsburg, California,…Learn More..

Bruno Frank HONOREE 2013

Frank Bruno was born in Monterey, CA on January 23, 1957 to Stoney and Anna Bruno. He grew up going to local schools and graduated from Monterey High School in 1975. He married his wife, Cindi in 1978…Learn More..

Bruno Mike HONOREE 2013

Michael Anthony Bruno, a 3rd generation Italian American, was born in Monterey on May 13, 1960 to Frank (Stoney) and Anna Bruno. He has two brothers, Frank and Steve and one sister Paula. Mike attended…Learn More..

Canepa Theresa HONOREE 2008

Theresa Canepa is a native of Monterey. There are not too many of these left. She was born on April 1, 1936. Theresa attended local schools graduating from Monterey Union High School. Her roots are strongly…Learn More..

Cardinale Joseph HONOREE 2017

Joe was born Joseph Albert Cardinale, to parents Genevieve and Salvatore Cardinale, on June 20, 1951. Joe grew up with two brothers, the eldest, Vincent, and his younger brother, Thomas. Joe is a "local…Learn More..

Cardinale Salvatore P. HONOREE 2011

Sal was born to Vince and Rosa Cardinale on December 8, 1932 at the El Adobe Hospital in Monterey (now the present site of the Pacheco Club) He has two brothers, Sam and Anthony and two sisters, Grace…Learn More..

Cardinalli John HONOREE 2014

John Cardinalli was born in Pittsburg, Ca., on August 4, 1921. He was the ninth child of twelve. Six boys and six girls. His family moved to Monterey when he was around six years old and lived first on…Learn More..

Coniglio Peter HONOREE 2002

Peter was born on May 6, 1929 on Jefferson Street in Monterey, the second son of Horace and Mary Coniglio, and the grandson of Pietro Ferrante, a pioneer and founder of Monterey's sardine fishing…Learn More..

Crivello Frank HONOREE 2012

Francesco "Frank" Crivello, the son of Giuseppe and Providenza Crivello, was born on May 18, 1922 in Trapani, Sicily. Frank began work with his father fishing in the Mediterranean Sea at the…Learn More..

Crivello Very Rev. Peter A. HONOREE 2016

The Very Reverend Peter Anthony Crivello was born on July 1, 1960 in Monterey. He is the son of Frank and Mary Crivello and brother of Joseph and Providence Crivello. His Father Frank, a native of Trapani,…Learn More..

Crivello Sebastian "Buster" HONOREE 2011

Buster Crivello is a hardworking, loud boisterous man with a thick accent and a yes, we can attitude. Born in Trapani, Sicily, he arrived in Monterey in 1961 with his father Fillipo Crivello, mother…Learn More..

Culcasi Jim & Rosine HONOREE 2019

James Joseph Culcasi was born in Pittsburg, California to Salvatore and Antonina Culcasi on May 10, 1933. Rosine Louise Costanza was born in Antioch, California to Horace and Mary Costanza on January…Learn More..

Cursio Gary HONOREE 2011

Gary Cursio was born in Chicago Illinois and is the older of two children. He had the good fortune of having his maternal grandparents, both born and raised in Sicily living with his family from a very…Learn More..

Cutino Bert HONOREE 2012

Bert was born in Monterey on August 7, 1939, to Paul and Rose Cutino. His father, born in Sicily, came to this country as a young man, settled in Monterey, joined the local fishing industry and married…Learn More..

D'Aquanno Lina HONOREE 2007

Lina D' Aquanno was born in Trapani, Sicily on March 12, 1931 the daughter of a fisherman's family. As a young girl, she learned the strong Italian family values, and the way of Christian…Learn More..

Davi Giuseppe "Joe" 1938--2010

December 6, 1938--June 24, 2010 My name is Giuseppe (Joe) Davi. I was born in Isola delle Femmine, Sicily, on December 6, 1938 to parents Guerina (Gina) Cardinale and Francesco Davi. I am the oldest of…Learn More..

Davi Jeff HONOREE 2013

Jeff Davi, a third-generation resident of Monterey County, was born in 1957 to Anthony and Anita Davi. He has two brothers Anthony and Guido and two sisters Tina and Kathy. He attended local grammar schools,…Learn More..

Della Sala Charles HONOREE 2010

Charlie was born in New York on May 5, 1927. At the age of 3, he moved to Italy where he spent his childhood in Avellino, Fiorino, and Naples. He was educated by Salesian Priests in a school located outside…Learn More..

Della Sala Chuck HONOREE 2015

Chuck Della Sala was born in Monterey on September 2, 1955, one of five children of Charles Sr. and Monterey native Rose Marie (Bruno) Della Sala. He was raised in the Del Monte Grove and Old Town neighborhoods…Learn More..

Favazza Josephine HONOREE 2007

Josephine was born May 26, 1931 in the Pacific Grove Hospital to Joseph and Hattie Billeci. Her father was born in Crocket, California, but his family came from Isola delle Femmine. She is the second…Learn More..

Ferrante Anita Maiorana HONOREE 2016

Anita Maiorana Ferrante was born in Marettimo, an island off the coast of Sicily, to Pietro and Giuseppa Maiorana. Her father left Marettimo for America before Anita was born to earn enough money to reunite…Learn More..

Cerrito-Fettis Mary Alice HONOREE 2014

Mary Alice Cerrito-Fettis was born and raised in Monterey in a prominent local Italian family. Her parents, Sal and Alice Cerrito were pioneers in the restaurant industry, at one time owning seven restaurants…Learn More..

Gasperson Jane "Anastasi" HONOREE 2017

Jane "Anastasi" Gasperson, a 2nd generation Italian American, was born in 1951 to Joseph and Angelina Melicia Anastasi. She has one sister, Jodi Anastasi Duckett. Her Grandparents, Joseph and…Learn More..

Lavorato Shirley HONOREE 2012

Shirley Lavorato was born and raised in the Metz area of South Monterey County, one of eleven children. The dynamics of her family centered on love, affection and an emphasis on religion, honesty and…Learn More..

Leavenworth Nina HONOREE 2019

Antonina “Nina” Asaro Leavenworth was born in Monterey on April 15, 1966, to Salvatore and Antonietta Asaro. Her parents, both born in Sicily, came to Monterey in 1965, where her father joined…Learn More..

Leonard Ed and Bella HONOREE 2010

Ed and Bella Leonard And Family                            Edward (Ed) Leonard, the oldest of 7 children was born in Los Angeles and…Learn More..

Lombardo Nick HONOREE 2006

Nick Lombardo: (posthumously) Nick was a warm, gracious, and like-able man and a wonderful storyteller. After relocating to California from Chicago, he built his first gold course in Kingsburg and later…Learn More..

Lucido Orazio Horace 1909 -1957

Orazio “Horace” Lucido was born to Giuseppe Lucido and Francesca Cardinale on October 9, 1909 in the town of Isola delle Femmine, Sicily. Horace was a commercial fisherman and lived on the…Learn More..

Marotta Mike Jr. HONOREE 2014

Mike Marotta, Jr. was born in Monterey on September 19, 1951, to Michael and Phyllis Marotta. He grew up in New Monterey and attended San Carlos Elementary School, Junipero Memorial High School,…Learn More..

Marotta Mike Sr. HONOREE 2007

Mike Marotta is an entertainer, musician, businessman, civic leader and a person who is fun to be around. His stack of newspaper clippings is taller than he stands. His list of awards and achievements…Learn More..

Marzetti David HONOREE 2014

Hailing from Canton, Ohio, David has been in the radio business since 1976. He graduated from the WXY School of Broadcasting in Cleveland and immediately went to work on the air starting in Canton, then…Learn More..

Massaro Bob HONOREE 2017

Bob Massaro owns and operates Bostrom Management, a local business that manages events, conferences and associations. Bob was born Robert Angelo Massaro on April 13, 1942, to Carmelo (Carl) and Angela…Learn More..

Mineo Francisco "Frank" 1899-1961

Francisco "Frank" Mineo was born in February, 1899 in a small fishing village on the island of Marettimo, in the Province of Trapani, Sicily.  In 1921, Francisco (Frank) left his home and…Learn More..

Narigi John V. HONOREE 2019

JOHN V. NARIGI General Manager, Monterey Plaza Hotel & Spa As Vice President and General Manager of the Monterey Plaza Hotel & Spa since October of 1993, John Narigi has drawn on over 37 years…Learn More..

Orlebeck Roseann Cardinale HONOREE 2015

Roseann Cardinale Orlebeck and her husband, Bruce, have been married for 35 years and enjoy living in Corral de Tierra. They have three children and have been blessed with four grandchildren and are excited…Learn More..

Odello Bruna HONOREE 2006

Born in Italy near Lake Coma in Lombardia. She is a gregarious creative person, conversant in four languages, who lives her life as an example of top-quality women of Italian American origin. Although…Learn More..

Panetta Leon HONOREE 2004

Waiting for program biography.Learn More..

Pennisi David "Rowdy" Lost at Sea 1962-2004

Rowdy Pennisi--Still seeking answers for fisher's disappearance We found out the Coast Guard was looking for my brother Rowdy's boat, the Relentless, when a friend called. He was out fishing and…Learn More..

Pennisi Giovanni "John"

Giovanni “John” Pennisi was born in Monterey, California, on July 20, 1963, to Giuseppe and Elaine Pennisi. He was named after his Nonno, Giovanni Pennisi, who came to California as a fisherman…Learn More..

Pennis Giuseppe "Joe" i"--Fisherman Buys Buyer

Giuseppe “Joe” Pennisi  Intro for Fisherman Buys Buyer Giuseppe “Joe” Pennisi was born to Giovanni and Giuseppa Vasta Pennisi in Catania, Sicily. Giuseppe Pennisi followed…Learn More..

Pèpe Rich 2018 HONOREE

Rich Pèpe “Io sono Italiano.” (I am Italian). Like any ethnic family, I am very proud of my heritage. All my grandparents emigrated from Napoli, in Southern Italy and came through Ellis…Learn More..

Phillips Luke HONOREE 2015

Luke Phillips grew up in Monterey. His grandparents, Antonio and Carlotta Turano were Italian immigrants who settled in Monterey in the late 1890's. They raised ten children, including Luke's…Learn More..

Ragsdale Kathryn "Kitty" HONOREE 2006

 Kathryn "Kitty" Catania Ragsdale: (92 and still going strong) Kitty's involvement in church, city and state activities are numerous. She has served as grand marshal for numerous parades,…Learn More..

Rossi Emilio HONOREE 2007

Emilio Rossi was born in the small town of Piane Crati in Southern Italy on June 21, 1921. He was the youngest of four children. He learned love of his family, his culture and his country at…Learn More..

Russo James A. HONOREE 2008

James, or as he is more affectionately known, Jim, is a native of Monterey. He was born at the Monterey Hospital on March 25, 1940 to Mr. and Mrs. Shedo "Buck" Russo. Jim has three brothers,…Learn More..

Russo John 1913-2002

John Russo My fishing career started at the age of 13 in Pittsburg, California where I was born. During vacations from school I fished with my father, Anthony Russo, for salmon and shad on the San…Learn More..

Shake Chris Pullano HONOREE 2019

Chris Shake was born and raised in Monterey, California where he resides with his wife Lisa and son Austin who recently graduated from the University of Arizona in Tucson.  He is the son of Isabella…Learn More..

Shake Family HONOREE 2008

There are few locals who are not aware of whom the Shake family is. Most for that matter have a favorite story or memory of how a member of the family did something special for them or someone they know.…Learn More..

Spadaro Vito HONOREE 2016

Vito Spadaro was born April 26, 1937 to John G. and Girolamo Spadaro. He has one sister Lena Spadaro. His parents came from Marettimo, Sicily to Monterey in 1930 where his father became a lifelong…Learn More..

Gruwell Lucia "Ventimiglia" FISHING 1915-2017

Lucia "Lucy" Ventimiglia Gruwell was born February 10, 1915, in Martinez, CA, and arrived in Monterey at the age of three with her parents, Orazio and Maria Ventimiglia, and 9 brothers and sisters.…Learn More..

Ventimiglia Mike HONOREE 2015

Mike Ventimiglia was born in Monterey Hospital in 1944 to parents Mike and Florence (Iannotta) Ventimiglia.  He was one of four children, two girls and two boys.  He attended Del Monte grammar…Learn More..

Ventimiglia Nick HONOREE 2006

Is Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board of the Community Band of Central California which he helped organize in 1983. He views community involvement and leadership as personal responsibilities.…Learn More..

Ventimiglia Rose Enea 1929-2018

Rose Enea was born in Monterey, California, on November 14, 1929. Her mother Mary Balestrieri was born to Sicilian immigrants in Pittsburgh, California. Her father, Benny Enea was born in French…Learn More..

Ventimiglia Salvatore Memoirs Written in 1920

Salvatore Ventimiglia 1893-1975 The following is an autobiography of Salvatore Ventimiglia, which he wrote in 1920 in pencil, given to me by Cathy Gomez Ventimiglia, who's father was the son of Salvatore,…Learn More..

Ferrante Frank 1910-1960

1910 – 1960 Frank was born on July 22,1910 in Pittsburg, California to Angelina Catania Ferrante and Antonio Ferrante. Frank one of five brothers and three sisters according to the 1940 census.…Learn More..

Brief History of Festa Italia / Santa Rosalia Festival

                            A Brief History of Festa Italia / Santa Rosalia Festival                                                         by…Learn More..

Common Heritage Shared by California Sister Communities

Early Monterey clipper hull being launched at the G. E. Siino boat shop and ramp in Pittsburg. In the background is the F. E. Booth Cannery. Siino's brother, Angelo, founded the Monterey Boat Works…Learn More..

Fishing Boats

Fishing in Monterey Bay was mainly for salmon and was done by the sail boat or what the Italians call felucca.   Salmon were caught with gill nets this net consists of one or more panels of webbing…Learn More..

Fishing for a Comeback

Third-generation Monterey fisherman John Pennisi is preparing to relaunch his boat, The Irene’s Way, after eight years of keeping it docked. “It’s almost like starting all over again,"…Learn More..

Pennisi Giovanni Pennisi- family keeps Sicilian tradition of fishing alive

The village of Torre Archirafi, Sicily, was shrinking.  It seemed that men and families were fleeing the country as fast as they could find a boat to take them across the Atlantic.  Most had…Learn More..

Gill, Lampara and Seine Nets: A Day in the Life of a Fisherman

The mending and repair of fishing nets is an art form, a special skill which takes time to learn. We will take a look at three types of fishing nets that were used to fish the waters of Monterey Bay. Anthony…Learn More..

Isola delle Femmine Sister City

Isola delle Femmine, Sicily, became a Sister City to Monterey, California, on September 8, 2017.  Instrumental in getting this Sister City connection were Gasper Cardinale, Peter Coniglio and…Learn More..

Pittsburg, CA: The Black Diamond Connection (see photo's under same tittle)

Italians started migrating to the United States before 1850 with the discovery of gold in California at Sutter’s Mill around 1848.  Collinsville, California was a dropping off point for…Learn More..

Sicilian Carreto

                                                       …Learn More..

Storms and Boat Wrecks

 November 1919's storm that hit Monterey Bay almost devastated the fishing fleet. The storms that came out of the north were very severe and the fishing fleet that was moored in the bay…Learn More..

Where I Get My Strength

There are those of us who believe in a higher power and have had the privilege to witness the taking place of the strength and the power of believing. As a man who has made my living on the ocean…Learn More..

Beyond Cannery Row

I find this book very interesting in reading, it covers the culture of the Sicilian women who worked in the canneries in Monterey and the strength they showed in raising their families as the husbands…Learn More..