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La ragione. [volume] : (Philadelphia, Pa.) 1917-????
Place of publication:
Philadelphia, Pa.
Geographic coverage:
  • Philadelphia, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania  |  View more titles from this: City County, State
F. Silvagni
Dates of publication:
  • Anno 1, no. 1 (25 apr. 1917)-
  • Italian
  • Pennsylvania--Philadelphia.--fast--(OCoLC)fst01204170
  • Philadelphia (Pa.)--Newspapers.
  • "Organo di difesa della italianita, contro i vili, i camorristi, i sicari, i falsari e gli austriacanti, nemici della patria di origine e di quella d'adozione."
  • Archived issues are available in digital format from the Library of Congress Chronicling America online collection.
  • In Italian.
sn 84037024
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La ragione. [volume] April 25, 1917 , Image 1


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La Ragione

Founded in 1917, La Ragione (“The Reason”) was a short-lived weekly with only eight editions between April 25 and August 23, 1917. The target audience of the Italian-language newspaper was Italian immigrants living in Philadelphia.  La Ragione was published by Francesco Silvani at 1010 Christian Street and focused on exposing corruption within the Italian community.  It featured numerous articles about dishonest bankers who preyed upon immigrants by stealing money intended for international wire transfers to loved ones in Italy. La Ragione exposed banks that kept their financial woes secret from their customers.  The bankers continued collecting deposits, and when the bank closed, immigrants lost all their savings. The paper also accused prominent Italians in the community of public drunkenness, money laundering, and even murder.

Silvani published La Ragione in support of Giovanni Di Silvestro in his rivalry with Charles C.A. Baldi.  Di Silvestro was an Italian immigrant who later became a lawyer and a prominent figure within the Italian community of Philadelphia.  Also a leader in the community, Baldi had immigrated to the United States from Salerno, founded a bank, owned a hotel, factory, and warehouse; but earned a reputation as a corrupt slumlord.  La Ragione featured articles about legal disputes between Di Silvestro and Baldi, proclaimed Di Silvestro's innocence, and accused Baldi of corruption and slander. The paper called for Baldi's resignation from the executive board of the Order of the Sons of Italy and featured an article about a signed petition in support of Baldi's removal from the organization, which was sent to the Italian ambassador in Washington and to Thomas B. Smith, Mayor of Philadelphia.

Provided by: Penn State University Libraries; University Park, PA