Arnaldo was born December 3rd, 1882 in the comune of Castelfranco Veneto, Treviso, Italy. He had at least one brother, who was named Vittorio “Vito”. Arnaldo and Vittorio are said to have been foundling orphans. This means basically their parents abandoned them – likely either their economic situation did not allow the parents to care for them properly, or they were illegitimate. This was definitely not uncommon in Italy at the time, and usually churches would govern over the care of these children, in orphanages.
In any case, Arnaldo grew up, and at age 28 he married Maddalena DeGrandis on February 7th, 1911 in Castelfranco Veneto. Their first son Augusto Luigi was born almost exactly 9 months later on October 4, 1911. A strong custom in Italy is to name your first born son after the paternal grandfather. This could hint at Arnaldo’s parentage, if he had known of his parents at all. Unfortunately chances are I will never know.
On February 25, 1912 Arnaldo set sail from the port of Genoa, on the SS Ancona bound for Montreal, leaving his wife and new baby son behind in Italy, likely to find work. The ship passed through the port of New York, USA and he signed his name at Ellis Island on March 13th, 1912. He didn’t stay long, and returned to Italy in 1914. He and Maddalena had 2 more sons, in 1916 and 1919. Maddalena was pregnant with their fourth and final son when Arnaldo left for Canada again, this time aboard the SS Grampian. He landed in Canada on November 2nd, 1920, bound to meet his brother Vittorio in Montreal again. He did not stay in Montreal long, moving to Windsor, Ontario to work at Chrysler’s assembly plant located there. Vittorio is said to have gone to Argentina.
On June 3rd, 1923 Maddalena and his four sons boarded the SS Conte Rosso and joined him in Canada for good. The family became naturalized Canadian citizens on July 22, 1924. He was a labourer in Windsor for the remainder of his life, and passed away on his 71st birthday, December 3, 1953.