May 15, 2011
Interview 1 With Pasqualina Pat Adamo
Pasqualina Pat Adamo is the granddaughter of Francesco and Filomena Guzzo, who immigrated to Ottawa before the 1900s. Her father was Pasquale Adamo and her mother was Mary Capello. During World War II her grandparents were designated enemy aliens and had to report weekly to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) office on Sparks Street, in downtown Ottawa. At that time her father Pasquale Adamo was already deceased. Pat was 12 years old during the period and she recounts how grateful her family was that her grandparents were not interned and were only inconvenienced with having to sign in. She recounts how her family did not experience any other discrimination or hardship during that time, other one incident Pat had with a classmate at school. The Guzzo-Adamo grocery store was the first Italian store to be built on Preston Street, an area that would become Ottawa’s Little Italy. The Guzzo-Adamos were part of the handful of the first wave of Italian immigrants to Ottawa who not only built Little Italy, but also were instrumental in building the first Italian Canadian Church, St. Anthony of Padua, at the corner of Gladstone and Booth Streets.
In this opening clip Pat Adamo introduces herself and talks about her family’s grocery store in Ottawa.
Pat Adamo talks about her grandparents and discusses how they came to be designated enemy aliens.
Pat Adamo describes how she felt when her grandparents were designated enemy aliens.
In this clip Pat Adamo briefly describes how her grandparents had to go and report monthly to the RCMP.
Pat Adamo describes the one incidence of discrimination she faced at school.
Pat Adamo talks about her family grocery store. She mentions that her grandparents’ enemy alien designation did not affect the family business.
In this clip Pat Adamo talks about her grandparents and their early involvement in the Italian Canadian community in Ottawa.
Pat Adamo describes how her family assisted the family’s of the interned by supplying food on credit.
Pat Adamo further elaborates on her grandparents being designated as enemy aliens
Pat Adamo expresses her disappointment at hearing that Italy had joined the war on the side of Germany.
Pat Adamo shares her opinions as to whether the Canadian government did the right thing in arresting and interning Italian Canadians during World War II.
In this clip Pat Adamo expresses her thoughts on the issue of compensation and apology for the Italian Canadian community.
Pat Adamo elaborates on how the internment experience affected the Italian Canadian community in Ottawa.
In this clip Pat Adamo describes how her family has contributed to the Italian Canadian community in Ottawa and how her family has prospered in the years after the internment.
In this final clip Pat Adamo speaks about her family’s migration to Canada and the early Italian Canadian community in Ottawa.
August 15, 2011
Interview 2 With Pasqualina Pat Adamo
Pasqualina Pat Adamo is the adoptive granddaughter of Italian immigrants and grocery store owners, Francesco and Filomena Guzzo. During World War II the Guzzos were declared enemy aliens and were required to report to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) in their hometown of Ottawa. In this follow-up interview, Pat tells the story of how the Guzzos, back in Italy, lived across the street from her father, Pasquale Adamo and his big family. Upon leaving for America, they offered the Adamos a proposition: to adopt Pasquale and take him to America with them where he could live a better life. The Guzzos were childless and always shared a special bond with the young Pasquale, so the Adamos willingly accepted. Pat explains how her father and adoptive grandfather established their grocery store business in what became the Little Italy in Ottawa. She also recalls the story of how her parents were set up and subsequently married. Although Pat did not meet her father – as he had passed away unexpectedly three months before her birth – she is able to speak of him and his various business endeavors. Pat speaks fondly of her adoptive grandparents saying she owes her “Italianism” to them, having been brought up by them – her grandmother especially. Pat feels that Ottawa did not suffer as much as Montreal and Toronto during the war years because it only had a small Italian community. She is also thankful that her grandparents were not interned.
In this opening clip Pat Adamo talks about her grandparents and discusses the reason why they migrated from Italy.
Pat Adamo talks about how her father was adopted by the Guzzo family before they migrated to Canada. She also explains how her parents met in Ottawa.
Pat Adamo briefly talks about the work her grandparents did in Ottawa before opening their grocery store.
Pat Adamo talks about her grandparents establishing a grocery store in Ottawa in the early 1900s.
In this clip Pat Adamo talks about the death of her father and her older brother who became the head of the family at a young age.
Pat Adamo describes how her grandparents helped to build St. Anthony’s Church in Ottawa.
Pat Adamo discusses how her father assisted other Italian Canadian men with the paperwork required to bring their families over to Canada.
In this clip Pat Adamo speaks about how the Little Italy formed in Ottawa.
In this clip Pat Adamo talks about her family’s grocery store, the first Italian grocery store in Ottawa.
Pat Adamo mentions that although her grandparents were declared enemy aliens during World War II the Italian community continued to frequent their store.
Pat Adamo briefly talks about her grandparents going to register with the RCMP during World War II.
Pat Adamo speaks about discrimination faced by the Italian Canadian community.
In this clip Pat Adamo speaks about her parents and describes how her father helped the Italian Canadian community in the early 1900s.
In this final clip Pat Adamo speaks about her grandparents and discusses their role in the Italian community.