The Filitalia International foundation is putting the finishing touches on an immigration museum that plans to open with a street festival on June 1.
After extensive remodeling of its headquarters at 1834 E. Passyunk Ave., the foundation is set to unveil the History of Italian Immigration Museum. “The vision is celebrating Italian roots and American dreams,” said museum chairman Michael Bonasera.
The museum will take up about 1,300 square feet on its first floor to showcase the Italian “Great Arrival” through exhibits documenting the Italian immigrant experience in Philadelphia and elsewhere.
“Many who came during the Great Arrival came from southern Italy and were very poor, and they brought only their skills on the boat ride,” Bonasera said. “You had peddlers and carpenters and barbers and leather cutters and tailors, and we want to bring in artifacts and the tools that they use to show the contributions they made.”