The Italian Study Group of Troy (ISGT); a non-profit organization dedicated to the promotion and preservation of the Italian American heritage through language and culture. The ISGT, founded by the late Luella Baron, has been in existence for nearly 50 years! We are members of the Troy Chamber of Commerce and offer our support to local organizations. The ISGT is open to all regardless of age, nationality or religious preference.
The monies raised by the Italian Study Group of Troy in its fundraising efforts are used to support classes in the Italian Language, choral singing and our Special Performing Arts Club. These classes are offered to the public at a bare minimum and are subsidized by the ISGT. The Wayne State University Language Department accredits our language instructors.
The current Membership Board Member email _________
Individual membership per person is___- per married couple, and _____patron membership. The ISGT membership year is September-August. The current Membership Board Member is email _______________
In 1997, we initiated The Luella Baron Scholarship Fund, offered to students who are interested in the study of Italian culture and language, also accomplished by our fund-raising efforts.
ALSO: The Italian Study Group of Troy in liaison with the Italian Consulate of Detroit and other groups is at the forefront of an initiative to introduce the study of the Italian language in our high schools and public school programs.
Luella Sirianni-Baron was born in Brooklyn, New York and graduated from Syracuse University in New York. She was a piano instructor, musical accompanist and substitute teacher in the Detroit school system. She was the editor of the ISGT newsletter, founded the ISGT Children's Folk Ensemble. Mrs. Baron received the Distinguished Citizen of Troy Award in 1978, the Oakland County Association for Retarded Citizens' Volunteer Award and Dedicated Service Plaque from the Detroit Sign Company Deaf Theatre.
She was the author of Io Vedo a children's Italian-language text, and Teaching Retarded Children Through Colors, a method of teaching piano to the developmentally disabled.
She was a state trustee for the Sons of Italy Grand Lodge of Michigan and a member of Troy Youth Assistance, the Historic District commission for the City of Troy, People to People International and the American Italian Historical Association.
The result of Luella's vision was the Italian Study Group of Troy which was founded in 1974. From a small beginning she lent her talents as a schoolteacher and musician, teaching her own young children and others about their heritage, through language, song and dance. The response from the community was so favorable a mission was set in motion, far-reaching and significant in its impetus and awareness, a nucleus of activity and continuity. In all the endeavors and programs offered by the ISGT she expected integrity and authenticity, rejecting mediocrity or facade for show.
We will always remember her tireless work in church and community affairs. She embodied true compassion and spirit. We miss her always.
Adapted from articles written by Mike Best of the Detroit News and Rose Vettraino, ISGT Historian
Il Portale Antenati - This site is amazing! Antenati (Italian for “ancestors”) is, by far, the best website for Italian research
Archivio di Stato di Napoli, Passaporti ed Emigrazione (Passports and Emigration): While most Italian passport and emigration records no longer exist, this archive of Napoli (Naples) maintains 22,000 files for individuals who emigrated from Naples between 1888 and 1901.
Surnames in Italy - This helpful site has created directories of various military, census, vital and tax record collections.
ItaliaNames - This website shows the distribution of specific surnames in Italy, helping learn about where your ancestors may have originated.
Transcribed Vital Records of Italian Towns - If your town is listed here your ancestor search may have a head start.
Nati in Trentino – This site indexes 1.2 million people born or registered in the region of Trentino (in northern Italy near the Austrian border) between 1815 and 1923.
The following appeared in the July, 1995 edition of La Voce Italiana, the Houston Italian newspaper.
I am an Italian-American. My roots are deep in an ancient soil drenched by the Mediterranean sun, and watered by pure streams from snow capped mountains.
I am enriched by thousands of years of culture. My hands are those of the mason, the artist, the man of the soil. My thoughts have been recorded in the annals of Rome, the poetry of Virgil, the creations of Dante, and the philosophy of Benedetto Croce.
I am an Italian-American and from my ancient world , I first spanned the seas to the new world. I am Cristoforo Colombo.
I am Giovanni Caboto known in American history as John Cabot, discoverer of the mainland of North America.
I am Amerigo Vespucci, who gave my name to the new world, America.
First to sail on the Great Lakes in 1679, founder of the territory that became the State of Illinois, colonizer of Louisiana and Arkansas, I am Enrico Tonti.
I am Filippo Mazzei, friend of Thomas Jefferson and my thesis on the equality of man was written into the Bill of Rights.
I am William Paca, signer of the Declaration of Independence.
I am an Italian-American, I financed the Northwest Expedition of George Rogers Clark and accompanied him through the lands that would become Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin, and Michigan. I am Colonel Francesco Vigo.
I mapped the Pacific from Mexico to Alaska and to the Philippines. I am Alessandro Malaspina.
I am Giacomo Beltrami, discoverer of the source of the Mississippi River in 1823.
I created the Dome of the United States Capitol. They called me the Michelangelo of America. I am Constantino Brumidi.
In 1904, I founded in San Francisco, the Bank of Italy now know as the Bank of America, the largest financial institution in the world. I am A.P. Giannini.
I am Enrico Fermi, father of nuclear science in America.
First enlisted man to win the medal of Honor in World War II, I am John Basilone of New Jersey.
I am an Italian-American. I am the million strong who served in America's armies and the tens of thousands whose names are enshrined in military cemeteries from Guadalcanal to the Rhine.
I am the steel maker in Pittsburgh, the grower in the Imperial Valley of California, the textile designer in Manhattan, the movie maker in Hollywood, the home maker and the breadwinner in 10,000 communities.
I am an American without stint or reservation, loving this land as only one who understands history, its agonies and its triumphs can love it and serve it.
I will not be told that my contribution is any less nor my role not as worthy as that of any other American.
I will stand in support of this nation's freedom and promise against all foes.
My heritage has dedicated me to this nation.
I am proud of my full heritage, and I shall remain worthy of it.
I am Italian-American.
by Angelo Bianchi, Esquire