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December 13, 2017

The Mystery of the McKeesport Menorah

The Rauh Jewish History Program & Archives recently acquired this charming electric menorah from the Izsauk family of White Oak, Pa., a borough outside McKeesport. No one in the Jewish community in McKeesport could provide any information about the origins of the electric menorah, but we dug a littler deeper.

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October 25, 2017

From Cucina to Grocery Store: The Evolution of Pasta-Making in American Homes

For many people, Italian American culture is synonymous with Italian food. And who could fault individuals for thinking this way, considering the pervasiveness of Italian American cuisine in the United States today. The widespread popularity of Italian food was not always the case ... The evolution of pasta-making in American homes can be traced in the History Center’s Italian American Collection through an investigation of several of our artifacts: the chitarra, the hand-crank pasta machine, and the pasta die.

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October 11, 2017

Quel Mazzolin di Fiori: I Campagnoli and the Italian American Folk Revival

Conceived by the Italian Sons and Daughters of America (ISDA) at the birth of the ethnic folk revival and the tapering of Italian immigration to the United States, I Campagnoli began as mainly first and second generation working class Italian Americans versed in the culture of their Italian-born parents; as they evolved, members of the third and fourth generation and people of mix parentage joined the troupe.

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