The Italians


The 3rd great wave of immigantion to the U.S. occured between 1881 until 1920.  The majority of these immigrants came from Southern and Eastern Europe and the largest nationality to come were the Italians with some 5 million immigrants recorded entering the U.S in that time period.


Photo courtesy of Italiamerica.  All rights reserved. 

  “Ciribiribin,” 1909.  Composer:  A. Pestalozza, “Sweet Italian Love,” 1910.  Composer: Irving Berlin, “Marie from Sunny Italy,” 1907.  Composer: Irving Berlin.  


The influx of Italians was so great that even famed composers such as Irving Berlin used Italy and it’s people as characters in his earlier songs.  All three songs talk about how sweet it is to be loved by an Italian girl. To learn more click on the photo or song title. 

sweet italian     Sweet Italian Love, 1910.  Composer: Irving Berlin


Marie from Sunny Italy  Marie from Sunny Italy, 1907.  Composer: Irving Berlin.  

Dat's a my Gals  Dat’s-A My Gals, 1911.  Composer: Irving Berlin


The era also saw popular music being composed and written by several Italian artists such as Albert Pestalozza and Eduardo di Capua (famed for “O Sole mio.”)  Emerging alongside those artist were several Italian-American such as composer Al Paiantadosi who was born in the Italian quarter of New York City.  The three songs below emphasis a melodic nature of loving an Italian girl and the romantic atmosphere of Italy itself. 

ciribiribin  Ciribiribin, 1909.  Composer:  A. Pestalozza

Rosemarie Rose Marie, 1908.  Composer: Eduardo Di Capua

That Italian Serenade   That Italian Serenade, 1911.  Composer: Al Piantadosi.