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Living in poverty stricken Southern Italy in the early 1900s a young boy, Pietro Romeo, dreams of immigrating to America. He leaves his home and family when he was 16 years of age with $30.00 in his pocket and a small bag containing his meager belongings, sails across the Atlantic on one of the many immigrant ships and enters America through Ellis Island.
His life changes dramatically when he arrives in the new country through the people he meets, the events he lives through and the critical decisions he must make.
He works in the mines of Pennsylvania with his brother, Marcello, until he is involved in a horrific accident and forced to leave his job.
He leaves for New York and sees first-hand the dreadful conditions immigrants with little money are subjected to and the discrimination towards Italians in general during the early 1900s. While there he seeks out his uncle, Antonio Romeo, who Pietro had always admired; only to learn he had become a greedy, cruel “padrone” who preys on the poor. When Pietro confronts his uncle with what he has seen, he is forced to make a decision that would remain with him all his life.
While traveling on a train across the country, he meets a “paesano” from his hometown, Felice Manzano. They form a lifelong relationship as they make plans for their life in California. In San Francisco he meets a family that welcomes him as one of their own and he learns, from the patriarch of the family, how to use his talents to help him along his life journey.
He marries the beautiful, Rosa Trento and together they have a family and live through the decades that changed their lives; the 20s, the depression years of the 30s and the war years of the 40s.
You will meet his family, friends, acquaintances and paesani, who are all instrumental in his life and join him at his proudest moment when he became an American citizen and all that implies.
He was “PAESANO” to all who knew him.