Monday, August 31, 2009

Italian Harlem's Police Report #9

Topic: Battle With Italians: They Resent the Action of a Car Driver 1887

The Italians in "Little Italy," a district lying along First avenue, One Hundred and Ninth, One Hundred and Fifteenth and the intervening streets, celebrated the Feast of the Virgin Mary on Saturday. As for the past five years, they had a parade, and wound up the day with an exhibition of fireworks. Several thousand Italians took part in the parade and carried swords and pistols. The driver of a First avenue car tried to drive through the line of paraders. They resented his action, and a vigorous battle was in progress in an instant. Policeman Kuhtmann, of the Twenty-third Precinct, who was on the car, tried to stop it. Michael Marsti, of 420 East One Hundred and Thirteenth street, knocked him down with a sword, and Jose angelo jumped on the prostrate officer, injuring him severely. Policeman Nichols, of the Twenty-ninth Precinct, went to Officer Kuhtmann's assistance and was also roughly handled. Three citizens, William Jones, of 232 East One Hundred and Fifteenth street, Thomas cox, of 2206 First avenue, and George Baumgartner, of 422 East One Hundred and Fourteenth street interfered on behalf of the officers and Cox opened fire on the crowd with a pistol which had been knocked out of one of the officers's hands as he lay prostrate with a crowd of italians trying to jump on him and kick him. An Italian is said to be now confined to the house with a bullet in his leg.

Marsti and Angelo were captured, and Angelo di Farolio, who was an active p articipant in the fight, was also arrested. The latter was put under $300 bonds to keep the peace for three months by Justice White in the Harlem Court yesterday, and the others were held for examination. Four other Italians were subsequently taken from the ranks of the paraders as participants in the assault, but disorderly conduct was all that could be proved, and they were fined $2 each. Eight others were fined $2 each for discharging fireworks without a permit.

The New York Times July 18, 1887

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