The personal stories of some of Boston’s most successful Italians and Italian Americans have been finally collected in a project that integrates multimedia with old fashioned storytelling.
One Dec. 7, 2011, the project “Memory Traces” was unveiled at the New England Historic Genealogical Society in Boston, showcasing interviews with local personalities like – among others – Mayor Thomas Menino, Bertucci’s founder Joseph Crugnale and Red Sox owner Larry Lucchino.
The project was made possible thanks to a collaborative effort between the Consulate General of Italy in Boston and the MIT Mobile Experience Lab, in partnership with COMITES (Committee of Italians Abroad) of Boston.
Boston’s Italian community dates back to 1860, when the first immigrants came to the United States seeking better conditions than those of their homeland. For the past 150 years, Italian Americans have played a prominent role in the city of Boston, having distinguished themselves in various disciplines including business, government, medicine, technology, humanities, and academia.
Through geo-located video interviews, the Memory Traces project explores the Italian experience in Boston. These recollections from selected representatives of first generation and American born Italians help preserve their heritage for future generations.
The Memory Traces project website (https://locast.mit.edu/memorytraces) features the stories overlaid on a map of the city. Stories can be filtered by person, time period, and a selection of themes that capture the messages of the stories. A mobile application provides the opportunity for others to follow these memory trails through the city of Boston.
List of interviewees:
Thomas M. Menino (Mayor of Boston)
Simona Arcidiaco (Former CFO, Italian Home for Children)
Salvatore Balsamo (Founder, TAC Worldwide)
Emilio Bizzi (Institute Professor, MIT)
Gennaro Chierchia (Chair of the Department of Linguistics, Harvard University)
Federico Cortese (Music Director, BYSO)
Joseph Crugnale (Founder, Bertucci’s)
Catherine D’Amato (President, Greater Boston Food Bank)
Pam Donnaruma (Publisher and Editor in Chief, Post Gazette)
Spencer Di Scala (History Professor, UMASS Boston / President, Dante Alighieri Society)
James Di Stefano (State President, Sons of Italy)
Giulio Draetta (former COO, Dana Farber)
Paul Ferri (Co-Founder, Matrix Partners)
Joseph Ferrino (Retired Judge)
Giuseppe Giangregorio (Co-Owner, Green Cross Pharmacy)
Gioconda Motta (Co-Founder, CASIT)
Larry Lucchino (President and Co-Owner, Boston Red Sox)
Padre Antonio Nardoianni (Parish Priest, Saint Leonard Church)
Patrick Moscaritolo (CEO, Greater Boston Convention & Visitors Bureau)
Fiorenzo Omenetto (Professor, Department of Biomedical Engineering, Tufts University)
Anthony Pangaro (Principal, Millennium Partners)
Regina Pisa (Managing Partner, Goodwin&Procter)
Steve Pagliuca (Managing Partner, Bain Capital / Co-Owner, Boston Celtics)
Domenico Susi (Owner, Sulmona Market)
Giuseppe Taibi (Founder, SmartWorlds)
Joan Vennochi (Columnist, Boston Globe)
Patrizio Vinciarelli (Founder, Vicor)