Interview with Assunta Dotto

Assunta Dotto, an 89 year old woman, born in Italy, immigrated to Canada with her family as a young teenager. Her father worked for in the coalmines in Alberta, and the family settled in the coal-mining town of Cadomin in 1939. She recounts her early years in Cadomin, some difficulty with schooling and the English language, and her later move to and life in Edmonton with her husband and two children. At the outbreak of war with Italy, all the Italian residents of Cadomin were declared enemy aliens and had to report to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP). She recounts this experience, noting that on the whole the Italian residents got on well with other families in the small community of Cadomin, even during the war period. She describes her work at the Great West Garment Company, including making uniforms for the military, and later career in the food service industry. Her husband’s workplace injury at Molson’s Brewery in Edmonton and the reconstructive surgery of his right thumb is also detailed. She also briefly speaks about her daughter Lidia Dotto’s career as a science writer/journalist.