Italian Heritage Month

Sons of Italy in America: The beginning


The Grand Lodge of New York Order Sons of Italy in America

Originally called “L’Ordine Figi d’Italia,” the Order Sons of Italy in America (OSIA) was established in the Little Italy neighborhood of New York City on June 22, 1905, by Vincenzo Sellaro, M.D., and five other Italian immigrants who came to the United States during the great Italian migration (1880-1923). Their aim was to create a support system for all Italian immigrants that would assist them with becoming U.S. citizens, provide health and death benefits, and educational opportunities and offer assistance with assimilation in America.

In its over 106 years of service to the Italian American community, it has grown into the largest and most demographically diverse fraternal organization representing 23 million men and women of Italian heritage in the United States. Men and women share equal status as members and officers of OSIA, as do individuals of all ages and professions.

The OSIA Grand Lodge of New York was the first Grand Lodge formed on January 10, 1911. Today in 2011, the New York State Grand Lodge boasts of 76 local lodges with a family membership of over fifth thousand – located from the far reaches of northern New York to the eastern ti[ of Long Island. The Executive Office of New York OSIA is located in Bellmore.

The New Grand Lodge Foundation, Inc., Order Sons of Italy in America (OSIA) was formed on October 14, 1982. The mission of the Foundation is to assist in the development of programs that will foster education, language and the great culture of our Italian heritage. It is a no –profit 501 c3 organizations that have contributed hundreds of thousands of dollars to many worthwhile charitable, medical research and educational causes. Since 1982, the New York Grand Lodge Foundation, Inc., has awarded over $2.5 million dollars in scholarship awards to qualified students through its prestigious Foundation scholarship program.

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