Italian American Collection: Emilia Rosso’s Dolls


The Italian American Collection recently added a small grouping of objects related to the Rosso family of Pittsburgh into the museum’s collection. Italian-born Emilia Maria Polla immigrated to Leechburg, Pennsylvania, in 1917 to join her soon-to-be husband, Alberto Rosso. They were from the village of Brusnengo in the region of Piedmont in Northwestern Italy. Their families lived in a rural community and sustained themselves by tending to the land, as many in the countryside did. Alberto was trained as a bricklayer in Italy, but worked in the coal mines in Leechburg, the dominant trade for Italians and other immigrants in Armstrong County. Emilia encouraged her husband to leave his job in the mines and return to bricklaying. The Rossos moved their young family to the city of Pittsburgh and settled on Apple Avenue in East Liberty near Larimer Avenue.

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