An exhibit by Youngstown State University senior Paula Schaefer that chronicles the mass Italian immigration to the Mahoning Valley from 1890 to 1924 is featured at the Youngstown Historical Center of Industry and Labor in Youngstown.
Schaefer of Niles, Ohio, who graduates in Spring 2014 with a bachelor’s degree in American Studies and Italian, conducted the research and put together the exhibit as part of her senior project. Schaefer, who hopes to teach Italian after graduation, is a member of the Gould Society, Phi Kappa Phi and Phi Alpha Theta, and is the president of the YSU Italian Club.
Funded by a grant from the Ohio Humanities Council, the exhibit features different aspects of the mass Italian immigration to the Mahoning Valley from 1890 to 1924. The story begins with the conditions in Italy and continues to explain the emigration patterns to the Americas and settlement in the Mahoning Valley. This exhibit combines the two fields of Italian and American Studies. The period 1890 to 1924 witnessed a large influx of Italian immigrants to the Mahoning Valley, in particular Youngstown and Niles. Interviews explain personal accounts of the time period.