POST SCRIPT — Almost Five Decades Later, Postcard Finds Its Way Back To Author

February 2, 2018

By Katherine Keller

Last month we published the story of Rosalba (Madelio) Canfora and Calogero Canfora, Italian immigrants, who established their Canfora Bakery in Milwaukee in 1980. They sold it in 2017. After the interview, they told the Compass a story about a postcard that seven-year-old Rosalba (or her grandmother Vincenza Misuraca) wrote in 1964 to her brother Giacomo Madelio, who had left Sicily to study at the police academy in Rome. He received her postcard but after that, it was forgotten until decades later.

When Rosalba’s nephew Emanuele was visiting Gaetano Perlongo, his cousin in Trappeto, he noticed a colorful, framed postcard in Gaetano’s study. Imagine Emanuele’s surprise when he saw his aunt’s name on a card that was written 46 years before. Wondering how the postcard came into Gaetano’s possession, he learned that his cousin collected postcards and other Trappeto memorobilia. Via the internet, Gaetano had purchased the postcard for 30 Euros from a salesman in Melbourne, Australia, who had bought the postcard via the internet, from someone in Turin, Italy. Learning its story, Gaetano gave the postcard to Rosalba. Rosalba’s postcard and a Beatles photo signed by John, Paul, Ringo, and George were stolen when Giacomo lived in Turin. Giacomo was given the autographed photo of the Beatles as a token of their appreciation for the security service he provided them, when they played a concert in Turin in 1964.

The text of the postcard says that Rosalba sends kisses to her dear brother Giacomo.

Gaetano Perlongo is an Italian intellectual, poet, and essayist.

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