September 30, 2011

Italian-American roots in Belleville, Nutley

Growing up on the border line of Belleville and Nutley, the children in my neighborhood along Meacham Street knew that when we grew old we would speak Italian. It was as obvious as all of those gray-haired relatives who came to call spoke the dialect.

On Gless Avenue where I grew up, we had a few Polish families and there was one woman who only spoke Greek. Otherwise, the family names up and down the block, which was half in Nutley and half in Belleville, were virtually all Italian: Lardier, Dimichino, Gingerelli, Troino, Francisco, Bonano, Buccino, Cerami, D’Ambola, all the way to the dead end....

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Seasoned writer Anthony Buccino grew up in Belleville and lives in Nutley. A former editor of the Belleville Times, he has written many books about life and growing up in Belleville and Nutley. His latest book is "Sometimes I Swear In Italian." He also created the Old Belleville and Old Nutley websites. For information, visit

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