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Thursday, June 20, 2024
1914 City Directory ad for Graziano Bertini and Co.

From 1903 to 1910, the main protagonists on the Windsor Italian business stage remain the various members of the Ferrari family of Piedmontese origin: Eugene and John are listed in 1903-1908 as grocers, wine manufacturers, wood and coal merchants inWalkerville (north side of Wyandotte at Susan St.) and in 1905-06 Eugene is a fruit grower at 122

1914 City Directory ad for Graziano Bertini and Co.
  Lincoln Rd. But in 1909 others come on the scene:

Longo and Moceri – confectionary, fruit (wholesale and retail), cigars and tobacco at 49 Sandwich E., now Riverside Dr. E. (just east of Ouellette).

Frances Nosotti – dressmaker at 6 Lillian Street is the first of several business women that appear in the Windsor Business Directories between 1909 and 1930. Between 1911 and 1920, the number of Italian businesses is still small, but they represent important first bases in the community.

1911 – John D. Marcus operates a bicycle repair shop at 13 Mercer St.

1913 – Ben Oldani and Co. is a builder situated in the Manning Building

1914 – G. Bertini and Co. is a mosaic contractor at 165 Wyandotte St. E. His company was composed of other Italians, G. Agostini and A. Lombardi, and in 1919-20 it included A. Borgolini and J. Maddalena.

The first nurse and the first woman of Italian origin in a profession, appears in 1915: Victoria Ferrari (of 15 Campbell), daughter of Etienne Ferrari (mentioned in the 1891 census).

Merlo, Merlo & Ray – A paving and cement company situated in Walkerville. This company was first listed in 1918. Both the company and the Merlo family played an important role in the growth of the city and the community for many years. The career of Louis A. Merlo (1883-1975) was remarkable. Born in Cuggiono near Milan, he came to Detroit in 1901, and to Windsor in 1912. He was president and general manager of the company, which by the early 20's, had become involved in all facets of building and construction. In 1931, Louis was vice-president of Canada Paving and Supply Corporation and in 1933, manager of Sterling Construction Co. Louis A. Merlo had six children and some of them still live in Windsor. Paul Merlo, who was vice president of the company, was one of the first Italians to live on Erie St. East (No. 61).


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