Gargiulo Restaurant Photos

A picture of aunts, uncles, and cousins.
A picture of aunts, uncles, and cousins.

The cost for a boat to the U.S. was going down, so many Italians took the chance and left, with the little they had left. One of those people was my great-great-grandfather: Michael (Michele in Italian) Gargiulo. A part of the family decided on Cuba and ended up creating a coffee business. The rest of the family would eventually go to New York but the first to move was Michael. As the business started, and Michael started to make some money. Eventually, he got enough to sponsor the rest of the family: Giuseppa Palomba, my great grandfather Louis (Luigi) Gargiulo, and his two sisters Angelomaria and Teresa Garguilo. Michael had an apartment right near the restaurant, at 2909 West 15th Coney Island, while the restaurant was at 2911 West 15th Coney Island. My grandfather was born only 15 years after they got to the U.S, in 1926, on September 23rd.  He lived his very young years peacefully. Only three years after my grandfather was born, the stock market crashed. It was a dark time for everyone, but especially the family. Their business was giving them enough to pay for everything, but their income decreased because of the crash. The family ended up leaving their apartment, to live above the restaurant. There were aunts, uncles, and cousins all cramped into this place above the restaurant, with only two bathrooms. The business continued through the depression, and once my grandfather got old enough, he worked at the restaurant as a busboy. The depression went on for 10 years, and my grandfather lived most of his childhood in it, being 13 when it was over. 

Place(s): Coney Island

– Ian Ortiz

Relationship:  Grandchild of im/migrant Grandchild of im/migrant