Audio Recording "We worked with lava stones."

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About this Item

"We worked with lava stones."
Contributor Names
Venezia, Ralph (Narrator)
Carroll, Thomas D. (Interviewer)
Created / Published
Subject Headings
-  Italian Americans
-  Oral history
-  Interviews
-  Sound recordings
-  Stonemasons
-  21st Avenue (Paterson, N. J.)
-  Sanremo Italian Imports (Paterson, N.J.)
-  Ethnography
-  United States -- New Jersey -- Paterson
-  Interview with Ralph Venezia, owner of Sanremo Italian Import Company.
-  Summary of audio segment: RV says he worked in construction before he opened this business. His father-in-law was a stonemason, and they did some jobs together. Did a lot of stone work with him. RV says that too was unique, it wasn't like laying bricks, etc. And they worked for three months at the American Hotel in Vernon, NJ, and opened the doors with the Playboy Club there. Worked with lava stones, worked from scratch, with big stones, 3 or 4 feet diameter. Found the veins with a chisel, and split them to create a flat surface. RV left his initials in a couple of the stones. When he takes his friends he shows them. And the stone wore down a pair of gloves every day. RV talks a little about working with the lava stones. Uses the term "dolce", "sweet", for stones that split nicely. RV says all stones have a vein, but they usually don't break like lava stones, which have many straight veins. People watched them working on them, and took pictures.
Digital Audio Tape
Call Number/Physical Location
AFC 1995/028: WIP-TDC-A009
Source Collection
Working in Paterson Project Collection (AFC 1995/028)
American Folklife Center
Digital Id
Online Format

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Credit line

Working in Paterson Project collection, 1993-2002 (AFC 1995/028), American Folklife Center, Library of Congress

Cite This Item

Citations are generated automatically from bibliographic data as a convenience, and may not be complete or accurate.

Chicago citation style:

Venezia, Ralph, and Thomas D Carroll. "We worked with lava stones.". -08-11, 1994. Audio.

APA citation style:

Venezia, R. & Carroll, T. D. (1994) "We worked with lava stones.". -08-11. [Audio] Retrieved from the Library of Congress,

MLA citation style:

Venezia, Ralph, and Thomas D Carroll. "We worked with lava stones.". -08-11, 1994. Audio. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, <>.