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Guide To Sons of Italy® Records & Archives Available In Revised Edition

Press Contact: Kylie Cafiero, (202) 547-2900 kcafiero@osia.org

WASHINGTON, D.C.—July 12, 2004 ­ A guide to the history, major accomplishments and leadership of the Sons of Italy® has been published by the Immigration History Research Center (IHRC) at the University of Minnesota.

A Guide to the Records of the Order Sons of Italy in America® lists the entire contents of nearly 1,000 linear feet of OSIA documents that are housed at the IHRC. These include original founding charters, minutes of pre-World War I meetings at the local, state and national levels and newspaper clippings about OSIA over the past 10 decades.

The first guide to OSIA's records was published in 1989. The 2004 edition includes an update on the history of OSIA to 2004 and a new selection of historic photographs that date back to OSIA's earliest years.

The archives also document such recent events in OSIA history as the founding of the Commission for Social Justice® (1979) and OSIA's successful legislative campaigns that made Columbus Day a federal holiday and opened the Justice Department files on the treatment of Italian Americans during World War II.

The OSIA archives are the keystone of the IHRC's Italian American collection of more than 1,500 books, 450 newspapers and countless personal papers of journalists, labor leaders and writers. Since 1984, OSIA has pledged more than $167,000 to catalogue and maintain these archives.

A Guide to the Records of the Order Sons of Italy in America® is an important reference tool for researchers studying OSIA's history as well as the history of the Italian American experience in the United States over the past century, according to historian Stefano Luconi of the University of Florence.

"This ethnic association has been so influential and involved in multifaceted activities that any study of the Italian American experience in the United States can hardly ignore such holdings," Luconi says.

A Guide to the Records of the Order Sons of Italy in America® was compiled under the direction of Rudy Vecoli, Ph.D., the IHRC director and noted historian of Italian Americana, with assistance from OSIA historians Dominic Massaro, Joanne Strollo and Peter Zuzolo.

The book is available through OSIA for $24.95. Free shipping and handling. To order, send a check payable to "OSIA" to:

The Order Sons of Italy in America®.

219 E Street, NE

Washington, DC 20002

OSIA is the largest and oldest national organization for men and women of Italian heritage in the United States. It has more than 600,000 members and supporters and a network of more than 700 chapters coast to coast. OSIA works at the community, national and international levels to promote the heritage and culture of an estimated 26 million Italian Americans, the nation's fifth largest ethnic group, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.