Blog # 3
Saluti da Castelfranco Veneto – 24 May 2017
Our apartment is just off the piazza in Castelfranco in the province of Treviso and near the old town walls. Only a short walk for morning coffee and gelato in the evening! It’s a city of about 30,000 people and there is history, elegance and a mix of people including Africans and Eastern Europeans. The weather is warm – mid 20s each day.
Yesterday after looking around the large market that spreads through the piazza twice a week, I spent time working on the two conference papers I’ll present in June and July. I made some revisions and am nearly satisfied with the latest versions!
Today Alex and I met Quirino Bortolato, a former Maths and Physics teacher who is interested in history and has connections with veneti in Adelaide where he has visited three times. Anna Mechis introduced us via email because she thought that Quirino might assist with my approach to research in the comune or the local government offices in each of the villages from where the 18 pioneer Veneto market gardeners, the subjects of my thesis, emigrated between 1926 and 1928.
We went to Riese Pio X, a village about six kilometres away. Quirino, who has written numerous publications about Pope Pius X, was our guide and interpreter. We met the mayor or sindaco who was very gracious and interested in the Veneto market gardeners project, particularly in relation to people who emigrated from the local area. He presented me with two books about Riese, and invited us to meet with him again. Quirino has offered to take us back to Riese to meet the priest to arrange access to the parish records.
We’re starting to contact relatives of people who have been interviewed for the Veneto market gardeners project. We hope to meet with several groups before we leave on 4 June. Tomorrow we go to Malo to have lunch with relatives of Johnny and Eleonora Marchioro. They live in the Province of Vicenza and we have met them a couple of times before. Our trip will take about 40 minutes.
The meeting with Quirino was a wonderful start to the focus on this trip on the Veneto market gardeners project. We’ll return to Castelfranco in either June or July.