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Emilio Grandinetti papers

Identifier: IHRC794


Papers (1910-1960) of Italian American author, editor, and labor organizer Emilio Grandinetti (1882-1964) include personal correspondence largely relating to his union activities and affiliation with the Mazzini Society and the Democratic Party, Foreign Language Division; union hand-bills and pamphlets; newspaper clippings pertaining to the A.C.W.A., especially in Chicago, Cincinnati, and St. Louis, to the Chicago Tailor's Strike of 1910 and to organizing of the Curlee Clothing Company in St. Louis. Many of the articles were taken from Il Lavoro, the Italian language organ of the A.C.W.A., and the Advance, its English language newspaper.Also included are articles from La Parola del Popolo, which Grandinetti edited; and typescripts highlighting his opposition to Fascism, as well as speeches and photographs.


  • 1910-1960


Language of Materials

Italian and English


Open for use in the Elmer L. Andersen Library reading room.


This collection may be protected by the Copyright Law of the United States (Title 17, U.S. Code). It is the user's responsibility to verify copyright ownership and to obtain all necessary permissions prior to the reproduction, publication, or other use of any portion of these materials. Researchers may quote from the collection under the fair use provision of the copyright law.

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Emilio Grandinetti was born in Catazaro, Calabria, Italy on Oct. 28, 1882. Prior to immigrating to America (1907), he was active in newspaper work and socialist agitation in Italy. In this country, Grandinetti was an active organizer for the Amalgamated Clothing Workers of America (A.C.W.A.) from ca. 1914 until his retirement in 1948. Most of his energies in America were devoted to Union activities in Cincinnati, although earlier in his career, he was active in union organization and strikes in Chicago (1910) and St. Louis (1925). This collection contains four major categories of materials: correspondence, Union hand-outs and pamphlets, newspaper clippings and typescripts of speeches and articles.

Personal correspondence for the period 1911-1932 deals with matters of union organization and activity consists primarily of letters from officials of the A.C.W.A (folder 2). War-time correspondence (1942-1946) reflects Grandinetti’s affiliations with such organizations as Mazzini Society and the Foreign Language Division of the Democratic Party (Folder 3). Correspondence for the fifties is rather scant and of a diverse nature (folder 4) Folders 6 and 7 contain correspondence relating to two testimonial dinners held in Grandinetti’s honor, the first on January 19, 1947 honoring his retirement from active union service and the second on May 5, 1957 to mark his fiftieth anniversary in the United States.

The collection includes a quantity of union hand-bills and pamphlets dating from the period 1910-1930, mostly printed by locals in Chicago, Cincinnati and St. Louis (folders 8, 9, 10, 11). Notices of shop meetings, strike notices, organizational appeals constitute the bulk of this material. A few hand-outs and pamphlets touch upon the competition between the A.C.W.A. and a rival Union, the United Garment Workers of America.

Newspaper Clippings in this collection help illuminate the Midwestern history of the A.C.W.A, especially in Chicago, Cincinnati, St. Louis and Cleveland (Folders 12, 13, 14, 15). Among the major topics covered are the Chicago Tailor’s strike of 1910, and the Struggle to organize the Curlee Clothing Company in St .Louis (1925).

Grandinetti was publicist and editor as well as union organizer, and many of these newspaper articles were written by him at the height of organizational drives and strike actions (folder 12). Most of the clipping sin the collection were take from Il Lavoro—the Italian language organ of the A.C.W.A.—and The Advance—the official English Language organ of the same union. However a wide assortment of Publications are represented and some complete issues and broken runs of newspapers are included (Cf. Appendix for listing). After his retirement from the active union service, Grandinetti became associate editor of La Parola del Popolo (Chicago). He wrote for this publication until his death in 1964. Some of the Articles authored during this period were reminiscences of the early history of the A.C.W.A. Type scripts of articles of this type—a few of uncertain authorship—are contained in folder 17. One article entitled, “Alcunce Considerazione…” tells the story of Grandinetti’s involvement in the 1910 Chicago Strike.

Other typescripts in the collection highlight Grandinetti’s stong opposition to the Fascist Movement in Italy and the United States (folder 18).

A gathering of speeches and articles of miscellaneous subject water is files in folder 18. One noteworthy speech entitled, “Senza Titolo”—written on the eve of the 1928 A.C.W.A. convention—implores Italian unionists to avoid backbiting and internal squabbling so they can exercise a unified and powerful role within the Union.

There are 58 photographs with negatives in folder22

The Grandinetti papers were deposited in the Immigration History Research Center Archives by Mr. Egidio Clemente, editor of La Parola del Popolo of Chicago in June of 1967.


2 Linear Feet

Inventory of the Emilio Grandinetti papers.
IHRC Archives
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding Aid in English

Collecting Area Details

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