Museum hosts talks about Italian Canadian Experiences during WWII

Italian Canadian internees at Fredericton Internment Camp.

GUELPH, ON, July 8, 2015:

Two generations removed from the Second World War, Pal Di lulio and Joan McKinnon have unique perspectives on the impact of the detention and internment of Italian Canadians during the war.  They will share their recollections at Guelph Civic Museum Sunday, July 12 at 2 pm.

When Italy joined the Second World War on the German side, the Canadian government gave the RCMP authority to detain and imprison Italian Canadians considered dangerous without charges. As a result, 31 000 Italian Canadians were designated “enemy aliens” and around 600 were removed from their homes and held in prisons and camps.

CEO of the Columbus Centre, Pal Di lulio and Joan McKinnon will be at the Guelph Civic Museum on Sunday, July 12, to talk about the Ordinary Lives, Extroardinary Times: Italian Canadian Experiences during WWII exhibition.

Pal Di lulio, CEO of the Columbus Centre, helped develop Ordinary Lives, Extraordinary Times,  an exhibition now showing at Guelph Civic Museum.  He will share some stories about the internment and its aftermath.

Waterloo resident Joan McKinnon is the granddaughter of Leo Mascioli, who along with his brother Antonio Mascioli were arrested and sent to an internment camp in Petawawa, Ontario during the Second World War. She will share her recollections of this period and talk about how her grandfather’s interment impacted her family.

Created by the Columbus Centre of Toronto, Ordinary Lives, Extraordinary Times combines historical research with personal testimonies to explore the experiences of Italian Canadians during the Second World War and raises important questions about ethnicity, democracy and human rights.

There will be a guided tour of the exhibition at 2 pm, and the talks will follow. Tea and refreshments will be served. The event is included with regular admission.

Guelph Civic Museum is located at 52 Norfolk St.


Robin Morden

Community Relations Coordinator

Guelph Museums


[email protected]

Posted by Dawn Owen on July 9, 2015