The pictures presented in our Italy of Old collection were passionately produced from Magic Lantern slides that my grandfather, Rinaldo Rosati, brought from Italy when he immigrated to America around 1900.
The glass slides present Italian culture, Italian art, Italian architecture, Italian cities and countryside, and were probably taken in the mid 1800’s by my great grandfather, Angelo Rosati.
Fond memories, a passion for Italy, and honor to our ancestors are what brought about this endeavor.
Just a little background:
As a child, my mother would bring my sister and myself to visit Grandma and Grandpa Rosati every Saturday. We would catch the 6 AM bus and arrive at their home around 8 AM. My dad was a milkman and would come to pick us up after he got off work. My grandmother would constantly tease him, speaking in Italian – he never understood what she was saying but he always came back with some made up words of his own which nobody understood and we laughed till we cried. We really enjoyed those visits and occasionally brought our friends with us. I think they came along because my grandmother made such great spaghetti sauce – however my grandfather always said he made the best sauce because he used wine which he made himself.
As a little boy, I would always “snoop” around their home to look for interesting things, like the wine press in the basement and the oak barrels where my grandfather aged his homemade wine.
Then there was the attic with some old trunks, a few boxes with old pictures, and a unique old wooden box with some strange looking glass slides in it. I never thought much about that box until one day grandpa said that someday I could have it – so, after that, it became a “prize” that I constantly asked for, but was told “when you get older.”
I never really thought about it as I got older until my grandfather passed away when I was in my twenties. I remembered what he had said about the box and at that time I finally collected my “prize.”
Again, many years passed and I occasionally looked at the slides, but nothing really clicked until we (my wife, Debbie, and kids, Baron & Juliene) visited Italy and fell in love with the people, the culture, the immense beauty, the amazing art, the unsurpassed architecture, and the cities and countryside.
The slides now had a new meaning and became our family’s labor of love.
We lovingly present these pictures for your enjoyment and to honor our Italian ancestry.
Grandma and Grandpa Rosati were such awesome loving grandparents who brought into our lives the appreciation of their Italian heritage which we carry with us today, as do our children.
The slides have been scanned, painstakingly detailed, and reproduced for all to see, and hopefully feel the extreme passion that Italy can bring into your heart.
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