Brooklyn, or "Bruculinu," as many Italians affectionately pronounced it, is where Italian values, culture, and dreams thrived. In an era when over four million Italians found their way to America, the first significant influx came during the 1880s, primarily from rural peasant communities fleeing poverty and overpopulation. Although Italians in South Brooklyn have been traced back as far as the 1820s, most settled in Manhattan. The 1855 New York Census did not list any Italian natives in Brooklyn; however, by 1890, there were 9,563 Italians residing in the borough. By 1900, Brooklyn's Italian population was second only to Manhattan. Although the last notable wave of Italian immigration ended in the 1960s, Italian remains one of the six prevalent foreign languages in New York according to a 2007 census estimate. This work serves as a time capsule to remind us of the contributions and influences these immigrants have offered to the community.
This event is free, and is funded in part by Poets & Writers with public funds from the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature. Please contact the Greenbelt Nature Center if you have any questions.