Factory Picture

Keasbey and Mattison Factory
Keasbey and Mattison Factory

In 1920, my Great grandfather came from Southern Italy.  He had already secured a job before coming to America because immigrants either needed to be sponsored or they had to be employed in order to be allowed into America.  Keasbey and Mattison had an asbestos company in Ambler Pennsylvania and was recruiting poor southern Italians, like my grandfather.  Asbestos was terrible for the body, but all of the immigrants didn't know that, so they were unknowingly risking their health.  However, the company provided housing and a store for food and necessities.  So, my great grandfather lived and shopped on the premises.  It was basically a small factory town.  He worked hard all alone in America for around five or six years without any of his family.  Finally, he had enough money saved to bring his wife and oldest child over.  My great grandmother was pregnant before he left, but the baby was born after he left, so my great grandfather didn't meet his baby until he was 5 years old.  In addition to bringing over his wife and son, he brought over most of his siblings and their spouses and children.  They lived in a 1 bathroom 3 bedroom home with 6 children.  Italians experienced a lot of hatred during the early nineteenth century in America.  Italian was my great grandfather’s and my grandfather’s first language, and my grandfather even had to repeat a grade because he didn't understand English.  Even though most immigrants like my grandfather didn’t speak a lot of English, they were able to get jobs and raise families in America because of factories like Keasbey and Mattison.  

Year: 1920

Relationship:  Great-grandchild of im/migrant or more Great-grandchild of im/migrant or more