An East Harlem Scene from “The Godfather”: Sonny Corleone(James Caan) beats up his brother-in-law Carlo(Gianni Russo.)

The Godfather Movie:Click on this link to view YouTube video-  Sonny Corleone(James Caan) beats up his brother-in-law Carlo(Gianni Russo.)

In this scene from The Godfather, James Caan seeks revenge for the unmerciful beating of his pregnant sister, Connie Rizzi. He heads for East Harlem’s E. 118th Street, to brutally beat up his wife-beating brother-in-law Carlo Rizzi(played by Gianni Russo.)

The scene was filmed on the 500 block of East 118th Street. My family and I lived there before this movie was filmed. The stoop that Carlo(wearing an orange and tan suit) is standing on-before he attempts to run from crazed Sonny, is 503 East 118th Street.

 Note of Trivia: Most of the principal photography took place from March 29, 1971 to August 6, 1971, although a scene with Pacino and Keaton was shot in the autumn. There were a total of 77 days of shooting, fewer than the 83 for which the production had budgeted. (

This particular scene was filmed in the summer of 1971.(My educated guess, based on the filming timeline, and the fact that the children are being soaked by the “johnny pump.”) Ahun 18 Gianni Russo503 E. 118 The Godfather

Farm Contest in Jefferson Park, East Harlem, N.Y.C., 1939

Farm Contest in Jefferson Park, East Harlem, N.Y.C., 1939

Park Farm Contest
Thomas Jefferson Park, Manhattan | April 4, 1939

© Copyright New York City Department of Parks & Recreation.

The 129th Religious Feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel

The 129th Religious Feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel

Save the Dates!

Opening Day in Jefferson Park. From the MCNY digital archives.

Opening Day in Jefferson Park

Circa 1902
(From the online digital collection of the Museum of the City of New York.)

Steppin’ out, Italian Harlem style!

Steppin' out,Italian Harlem style!

Year: 1938. Left to right,my Aunt Rose Puco,cousin Jackie(baby), and my beautiful grandmother, Katie Puco. I have enough evidence to believe that this photo was taken in front of the war memorial in Thomas Jefferson Park, in East Harlem.This memorial was known to East Harlemites as “The White House.”

Jefferson Park circa 1911

Jefferson Park circa 1911

This is a photo depicting children gardening in Thomas Jefferson Park, in East Harlem, N.Y.C., circa 1911. In the background is the war memorial building, known as “The White House.” Here is the link to some wonderful vintage photos of our ancestors, as child farmers.

History of East Harlem’s Housing Projects-Fordham University

East Harlem's Housing Projects History-Fordham University

Congratulations, Charlie! Your poetry book is wonderful!

The Next Breath

By Charlie Giardino

My East Harlem family friend, Charlie Giardino, has just published his new poetry book on Charlie was born and raised in East Harlem, and lives in the Bronx.

Beautifully written by my friend, Charlie Giardino

SSummer night
doo wop music
echoes from the jukebox
it’s out on the street

it’s wire snakes
through the window
inside the club to the plug
by the pool table

everybody’s outside
on Pleasant Avenue
my home town
my little village

Pleasant Avenue
ain’t that a name?
most people don’t know it exists
and that’s fine with us

the johnny pumps are open
girls are jumping rope
some kids are playing stoopball
others eating Italian Ices

I’m on 119th street
waiting for you to come out
when I spot you a half block away
my heart skips a beat

and I deliberately act cool
chatting up a buddy
while looking over his shoulder
as you draw near

damn, you look pretty
white pedal pushers
striped top and some cute shoes
ain’t you a sight to see?

‘I only have eyes for you’
is playing now
and ain’t that the truth?
as you greet me with a kiss

‘My love must be a kind of blind love
I can’t see anyone but you.
Are the stars out tonight?
I don’t know if it’s cloudy or bright
I only have eyes for you, dear’

and you take my hand
and we walk down to the park
to sit and stare at each other
on a park bench

beneath the amber glow
of the street lights
life is wonderful
and love is grand

‘I don’t know if we’re in a garden,
or on a crowded avenue.
You are here, so am I
maybe millions of people go by,
but they all disappear from view.
and I only have eyes for you’

ain’t that the truth?

and wasn’t that a night?

charlie gee 5/14/12

Looking for all things East Harlem? You can find it on Ebay! I have!