Funeral Benefit certificate of Ettore Sanguiro for the Order Sons of Italy, 1937

Funeral benefit certificate in the amount $200.00 of Ettore Sanguiro of Hamilton, ON, for the Order Sons of Italy, February 15, 1937. The certificate was issued from the head office in Toronto.

The Order Sons of Italy (OSI), founded in 1905 by Dr. Vincent Sellaro in New York City, operated as a mutual aid society for those of Italian origin. The first Canadian lodge of this fraternal organization was founded in Sault Ste. Marie in 1915. The Hamilton chapter was founded in 1925/1926. It was divided into three main lodges – the Trieste Lodge, the Imperial Lodge, and the Roma Lodge (the women’s branch). Fascists attempted to take control of this organization in the 1930s. 

The organization itself was never declared illegal (unlike the fascio and other groups) and continued to operate throughout the war years, although in a much-reduced capacity. Given its association with those interned, it took several years for the OSI to return to its prominence and activities.

The certificate reads:

Order of the Sons of Italy
Mutual Benefit Society of Ontario
Incorporated in the year 1926

This is to certify that Ettore Sanguiro member of the Order Sons of Italy Mutual Benefit Society of Ontario is insured for Funeral Benefit for the Sum of Two Hundred Dollars, ($200.00) payable upon receipt of due proof of death of the insured during the continuance in the membership, as specified in the Rules of the said Society.

Payable to Luisa Sanguiro Beneficiary wife (relation)
Given at Toronto this 15th day of February 1937
The Mutual Benefit Society Commission

The document is signed by the President Teodoro Zambri and Secretary Libero Sauro. All three men were arrested and interned as threats to the safety of the Canadian state.