Joseph C. Dilucido - Childhood



The first house that Joe can remember was his parents house. It had two stories where Joe's family lived in the top floor and rent out the bottom floor. joe's future wife's Uncle designed the house and Joe's dad built the house himself by hand. The wrong bricks were delivered to the construction site, so his dad got them for next to nothing. The house always had running water, electricity, and indoor plumbing. The family got their first radio in 1938 and the first broadcast was the news and weather. The house was heated by central bastion heat, and there was a stove in the kitchen where Joe's mother would bake her own bread. Joe first talked on a phone at around 11 or 12 years old. Their first refrigerator was installed in 1938. Joe saw his first airplane in 1939. It had the radiator right behind the propeller, it was a real biplane. The house had a Rott cellar. Joe's mom would order a barrel of apples and a barrel of flower, and that was good for the winter. In 1937 Joe's family got their first car, it was a Pontiac, Joe's dad had never driven a car before that. They raised chickens and hogs, so they did have a lot of pets. It was Joe's job to take care of the hogs and feed the chickens. They had a roasted chicken every Sunday, and all of the eggs they wanted. They would go to the movies for .10 cents and see two feature films and a short film. They did not take vacations, but would take day trips to Newport to go on the boat. Joe had so many wonderful moments with his parents that he could not possibly put them into words. In 1928 they had a VERY bad snow storm that shut the city down. Joe wanted to be a jewelry designer when he grew up, but never followed through with that.
Joe's mother was the disipinarian in the house. English was not the primary language in the house until Joe got to primary school, then the family spoke mostly English at home. Joes's brothers name was Ettore. How Joe's father got these names is that he was a reader of history, there were two Generals, one was Ettore and the other was Caradino, so that is how they both got their names. Joe was a very sick child, and when the doctor came over to make a house call, Joe's brother came in the room and said, why are you messing with Joe, he is not going to live, of which the doctor said, he is going to piss on your grave, and so it was since his brother died in his 50's and Joe died at 98.
Joe's older brother looked after him. He was a very tough boy on the outside. The saddest time for Joe's family was when his father died. He died in 1958 and their mother passed in 1979. Both of them were born in Italy.
Joe went to public school at Marieville Grammar School in Providence RI and said that there were 59 kids in each class.
Disciple was of the highest order, because if you got in trouble at school, you would go home to a second slap, but Joe would keep his school discipline to himself.
The kids would play baseball, touch football and chase girls. Joe and his brother would run up to Lincoln Woods after school to go swimming, but had to make it home by 5:00 sharp for the family dinner or there would be hell to pay.
One of Joe's first jobs was as a pin boy at the bowling alley where he was making .02 cents a pin, or $17,00 a week. The job Joe liked best as a teenager was working for a company that did store fronts, where Joe would stain the wood. 
In those days there was no Middle School, so Joe went straight to high school from Grammar School.
Joe continued his education at Central High school in Providence RI. This was the first time Joe had a colored person in the same class. They were taken back by the fact, but like anything else, you get used to it.

From high school Joe went to the Rhode Island School Of Design for Chemistry. He began by working on fabrics because the building that they were in was called the Jessy Medcalf, who owned textile 6 mills in Rhode Island, and used the school to recruit workers. But by the time Joe graduated, all of the mills had moved down south.
But he had learned about paint chemistry and furniture refinishing.

Joe helped his dad build his dad's brothers house, Uncle Jonny's. The build his house from the ground up and it took two years of back breaking work. In those days that is what you did. In Italy you would build your one house and they brought that skill to the States. It had to be a brick house. The address is xxxxxx and their hard work still stands today. The audio below is Grampi's/Joe's description of building Uncle Jonny's house!

​Joe was baptisted at St Joes Church in Pawtucket



Joseph C. Dilucido - War years
The life and times of Joseph C. Dilucido


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