The buildings and homes rekindle memories …
A while ago, I shared my early childhood memories of a nostalgic walk along Knight Street in the beloved Federal Hill neighborhood. That walk also brought back memories of my regular Saturday morning trip to downtown Providence for my clarinet lessons with Mr. Piacetelli.
I leave my Andrews Street house for the short walk to Broadway and come to McAlpine Hospital on the corner just across the street from Betty Lou’s Beauty Salon. Usually, I take a right and go to the bus stop on the corner of Courtland and Broadway where the Armenian Church, St. Vartanantz is located, but today I have enough time to forego the bus and take a leisurely walk to my lesson.
I turn left at the hospital and pass Tramonti Auto Sales and Knight’s Liquor. I wave to Angelo who is unloading cases of beer. Across the street is Dr. Valentino’s office where a few years earlier I had my tonsils removed. Across from his office is the D’Andrea Pharmacy, where unlike a lot of other drug stores, this one also served ice cream sodas. I pass the Gattone Funeral Home and come to the Uptown Theatre where on most Saturday afternoons, and for only 25 cents, I can watch my cowboy heroes and Flash Gordon serial cliffhangers come to life. As I pass, I say Hi! to Jack who is always on duty in the lobby.
I reach the corner of Broadway and Vinton and glance over at Giso Brothers, one of several sponsors of Federal Hill Little League. Further down is Dr. Maiello’s office who is everyone’s doctor. Then I come to the Aurora Club on the corner of Sutton Street and just past that is the De Pasquale’s pharmacy.
After the Uptown I see the Italo-American Club next to the Texaco Gas Station. Continuing down Broadway, I pass Masello’s Brother Barber’s Supplies and Dr. Migliaccio (who would successfully remove my ruptured appendix in 1964.)
Now I am almost downtown and pass the Broadway Press where the Italian Echo is printed. Just past that is Mulry Chevrolet where my dad in another few years will buy a brand new Chevy. On the next corner is Engle Tire and across the street another tire store, Broadway Tire Sales.
My last stop is the Southern Belle Dinner operated by my friend Tommy Caramonte’s dad Joseph. It’s located exactly over where Rt. 95 will pass.
Finally I reach La Salle Square and after I go by the fire and police station next to the library, I have a short walk to Mr. Piacetelli’s studio where despite his great teaching skills did not result in any semblance of a musical career for yours truly.
But those Saturday mornings supplied me with a wealth of wonderful memories of growing up in Federal Hill.