The Italian Americans

About The Series

EPISODE THREE: Loyal Americans (1930–1945)

LaGuardia with supporters

A second generation of Italian Americans begins to enter the labor movement, politics, sports and entertainment. Fiorello LaGuardia beats Tammany Hall, the Irish Political machine in New York, to become Mayor and represent the "little guy." Joe DiMaggio, the son of a fisherman in San Francisco, becomes a powerhouse, who breaks the record for consecutive hits and becomes an All-American hero.

But with the outbreak of World War II, Italians' loyalty to America is questioned and they are forced to choose between two nations at war. While many Italian Americans fight on the frontlines with valor and bravery, other Italian Americans are labeled "Enemy Aliens" including DiMaggio's parents. The War proves to be a turning point for Italian Americans as they begin to break out of their enclaves.