Interview with Antonia Maria (Ninetta) Ricci

Antonia Maria (Ninetta) Ricci (née Frenza) was born in Ripabottoni, Campobasso, Molise, Italy in 1926. She immigrated to Montreal, Quebec (via Ellis Island) with her mother, Assunta Frenza (née Sauro), to join her father, Leonardo Frenza. Leonardo immigrated to Canada six years earlier. In this first interview, Ninetta recounts the time when her father was arrested and interned at Camp Petawawa during World War II. Ninetta vividly discusses the effects that her father’s absence had on the family, and the lengths her mother had to go to in order to provide for her and her younger sister, Edda. When their relief (welfare) was cut off completely, Ninetta tells some interesting stories of neighbours who stepped in to help her struggling family. Notably, Ninetta recounts the story of her father’s return from the camp. After the war, in 1946, Ninetta married Galileo Ricci, designated an enemy alien during World War II and ordered to report monthly.