|Luigi Minello was
born in Vedelago, in Treviso province, in the year 1876. In 1893, at the age of 17,
he married 18 year old Cristina Scapinello, .
In 1907-1908, Luigi took his eldest son, Leo, and went to find
work in Switzerland. They were away from home for at least two
years. Life was difficult in Italy and, in 1911, Luigi decided
to move to Canada. Luigi and his son settled in New Waterford,
Nova Scotia as there were people from his home town living
in that area. The following year, 1912, Cristina immigrated to
Canada with the rest of the children: Giuseppe, Ugo, Girolamo
(who died at the age of 18), Carlo, Corina, Amelia, and Elvira.
Luigi found a home big enough for his large family. Over the
years, Luigi and Cristina had three more children, George, Emily,
and Maria. They had also twins, who died at birth.
By the age of 12, the boys worked in the coal mines to help
support the family. Later the family moved to Windsor. Over the
became quite an entrepreneur and built two large homes. Cristina
always referred to her home in New Waterford as the “baracca”.
Luigi built a “merry-go-round” and the oldest boys
used to push it manually. Another one of his inventions
was a huge organ. Many people still remember Luigi pushing the “mola” that
he built to sharpen knives and scissors. In 1939, when
St. Angela Merici church was built, Luigi along with his son,
Carlo (who was an electrician), built a large chandelier that
hung from the ceiling. It hung there until the first renovation
of the church.
Luigi and Cristina lived in Canada for more than 50 years, but
they never learned to speak English. Somehow they managed, survived
and raised this large family that would astound most of us today.
The fact that families lived close by made it easier to always
be available for Luigi and Cristina.
Luigi died on November 10th, 1963 at the age of 87. Cristina
died in March 1968, at the age of 93.