image“The Stoop” is where friends should get together and reminisce about the “old days” in East Harlem. Perhaps you are looking to reconnect with a long lost friend, or just want to write a comment about your days in the old neighborhood. This is the place to do so! The weather’s always fine when you visit Italian Harlem’s, “The Stoop.” 🙂

Feel free to email me your vintage “stoop” photos from Italian Harlem. It would be my pleasure to post them here!

503 E. 118 The GodfatherMom and Margaret on stoop os 505 E. 118 c.1957.jpg

My mother, Margaret (aka “Margie”) on the stoop of 505 E. 118th St., with my sister, Margaret. Circa 1957. My mom passed in 2011. Riposa in Pace.philly's class-OLMC-columbia-2008 182

My Great Aunt, Columbia Pennino Altieri’s stoop, on Pleasant Avenue, between 116th and 117th Street. Columbia was born in East Harlem in 1922, and died in 2009. She was a life time East Harlemite! May she rest in peace. Riposa in Pace.


  1. Nancee says:

    Wonderful site . Love reading all the stories and seeing all the old time photo”s

  2. Margaret Puco says:

    Funny before I even seen the picture of Mommy and me that’s the first thing I thought of how Mommy and me used to sit on the stoop and talk to neighbors passing by.I wish I could go back in time for just that day.❤️💕

  3. Rita says:

    I lived on 119th and Pleasant.

    • vincent casale says:


      • vincent casale says:

        Vin Casale here……also played football for Cardinal Hayes email if Rita: NE1410is@verizon.net

      • Debbie Rizzo says:

        i remember you hoppy as a child you hung out with my brother Anthony who was shot by BF high school He also hung out with Binky ! iwas only 9 but remember it all! He was killed on m moms bday sadly to say

    • Linda says:

      I just found this website and I am amazed when I read all of the comments…it brings back great memories of East Harlem. We moved when I was in the 2nd grade but my cousins continued to live there. I lived on 119th and Pleasant Avenue, also. Family last name Zambrano. My cousins last name was Simmons. Do you happen to know anyone with those last names?

      • Julie says:

        I grew up on 104 Street between 1st & 2nd Avenue. I went to St. Lucy’s grammar school.
        I knew the Lamonica boys Nick & I think Richard and they lived on 106 between 3rd & Lexington. That school yard right next store ais where they filmed the big fight in West Side story. We all use to hang out at Johnny Mungs candy store on Second Avenue between 105 & 106 Street. Anybody from this area?

    • eugene tripi . says:

      i lived on 119st pleasant down by east river drive.

  4. David Anthony Sautte says:

    Reminds me of the days that I only got a glimpsr of back in the 60’s. Our family (Sautte) lived for years on Arthur Ave. in the Bronx. I attended Roosevelt HS and lived in the area for a while. My dad Tony, Uncles Andrew, Mario & Dominick, Grandma Vinnie, and all their famiies gave me the opportunity to really feel Italian. Often heard of Cousin Philly Puco, but never got to meet him. Maybe will connect with Puco family on one of my trips to Florida:) Cousin, Dave Sautte

    • Angela Bella says:

      Hi David, do you live in New York? Most of the Puco’s live in New York, although some do live in Florida. Katie Puco was my dad’s mom. Your grandmother Vincie (Katie’s sister) was my dad’s aunt, and my great aunt. I guess that would make us 3rd cousins! Aunt Vincie’s kids were my father’s (Albert) first cousins. Who was your dad? I’m glad you stopped by to leave this message! How did you find my website? Angela 🙂

  5. Johnny Boy says:

    My great grandparents from Calabria settled in Italian Harlem around 1898 ( East 109 Street between 2nd & 3rd ). My great grandfather eventually bought the building – 226 East 110 Street between 2nd & 3rd Aves ). Everyone in this 8 family tenement were relatives. The building was adjacent to the schoolyard, where the opening scene of the movie West Side Story was filmed.
    Family surnames – Auriemma, Muscolino, Vecchio, Gaetano, Piri, Gregorio, Volpe.
    We were forced to move in 1960 when the City purchased the building ( eminent domain) to build an extension on to the public school. The family relocated to the Bronx, most moving to City Island.

    • Kathy Emchek says:

      Oh My God, My name is Kathy and I lived at 239 E 109th St. It was a beautiful building, and I certainly remember My Mom and I being kicked out of the building. Which was so horrible for us, We were one of the last to leave, and I was so scared to go into he building with the students that were there just hanging out in the vestibule. The Principle of the school came to visit my mother; he told her PLEASE get out They would have no problem with killing you!; My Father died when I was 2 years old. My Mothers Maiden name is Capolina. My Grandmother lived around the corner between 109th & 110th Street, on Second Ave. I had a Cousin Serafino there, who was mostly called Sony or Joe. Next door to my Grandma, we had Cousins May, Caesar and JoAnn Santorelli.. I remember the Deli across the street with Millie Cilento. I attended St. Ann’s School. and I remember the Pharmacy, Joe Calipos. After this we also moved to the Bronx, off Allerton Ave. and I attended St Lucy’s School and then went to Christopher Columbus where I graduated. Please Reply Back, I’d LOVE to here more

    • Julie Salerno says:

      I knew a Johnnie boy. He use to hang out at Johnny Mung’s store. He had a girlfriend by the name Joanie. Is that you?
      You must know the LaRocco boys – Nicky & Robert. Do you know them and have you kept in touch? I use to have a crush on Nicky!

  6. Joan Quilter says:

    So glad to find this site. Much of my childhood was spent in E.Harlem, until NYC’s projects took over. I lived at 447 E. 122nd St. between First and Pleasant Avenues. Lived there from 1946 – ’53. Went to P.S. 80 and P.S. 159 (middle school). Enjoyed that part of my childhood.

    • Gerry Hoyt says:

      Hi Joan, I lived one street over from you , 409 E. 121st from 1945 until 1949, and went to PS 80 also. We might even have known one another , was in 5th grade in 1948. Spent most of my time on the streets roller skating and use to go over to the park under the bridge, ride my bike along the East River with my brother. My brother was Buddy, my sister Honey Lea, and I am Gerry. My mother was a Rutigliano, and had been bought up in the same area but on Pleasant Ave. where her Father who came from Italy had an Itlalian food store. Her Mother was an Angiulo and came from Italy.Have many happy memories of my childhood in Harlem, and feel sad that our apartment house was amongst those torn down to build the projects.

      • joan says:

        sorry it took so long to reply. I think that when you were in the 5th grade, I was in the 6th. My teacher’s name was Mrs Weiner. I remember a grocery store on Pleasant Ave. (between E. 122nd & E. 121st) – close to P.S. 80. I remember Mike was the name of the grocer, but I think he was from Malta.

  7. Tom marucci says:

    I used to stay at my grandparents every summer on 116th st and Pleasant Ave when I was a kid. Tommy cheesecake Urgitano was my grandfather. Angelo the Jet was my uncle. Great times there. Patsys pizza, Coppolas pizza, Raos, Hot Dogs for 20 cents each , Scottys store on 119th, The Chinese restaurant on 1st Ave, Manhatten Special Coffee Soda, The Social club on 116th street, Yipee, Weegee, Johnny Monkey, Frankie Hearts, Blackie, Zoola, Johnny Roast Beef, Petey neck, Iggy Moe ect ect. Hanging out on the stoop until 6am after the bar below the social club closed. Patsys and Raos open until 4am in those days. The delightful coffee shop open 24 hrs. Leaving the apartment door unlocked all the time. During Christmas Holiday have big dinners on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Years Eve and New Years Day with 25 people over for each day. There will never be times like that again.

  8. AC says:

    Looking for pictures of Lexington Ave and 126th Street from the 1920s or 1930s. My grandfather grew up there and I want to show him pictures. He’s 98 now!

  9. Louis says:

    Does anyone on here remember the Tagliaferro or Cecchio families? My grandfather was Louis, Louis the eel – i grew up hearing all the old stories and nicknames. He’s not around – but his best friend from the neighborhood is and just last month we got together to talk. He told me about the riots and how he met Sinatra. He was 16 and was at BFHS then – crazy stories – crazier nicknames – Sally Bloomers, Louis the Eel (or louis the nose), Sonny Check but his real name was Tony. It was a great day for me to hear everything. They were born in 1929. He said they used to call themselves the red wings, i think, which he said ended up getting really bad as he got older, married, and moved to the Bronx where we all grew up.

    • vincent casale says:

      I to am from the neighborhood lived a few doors away from the famous Rao’s Restaurant and although i did not go to BFHS …the Red Wings did turn out to be a pretty bunch of rough dudes in the neighborhood always in trouble…..

  10. J McIntyre says:

    Can’t believe the photo of Columbia Pennino Altieri’s stoop is where I used to play! I lived across the street at 311 Pleasant Ave in the 1970s. Thanks for sharing that photo.

  11. vincent casale says:

    did you know the DeStefano’s Beverly–Lucille

  12. Mary Ann says:

    My friend Annie lived in a beautiful building on pleasant avenue next to Rao restaurant. Spent so much of my youth on that wonderful stoop. Unfortunately it was sold to someone who did not appreciate its beauty and the stoop was removed, creating an ugly entrance, so sad…

  13. vincent casale says:

    Couldn’t agree with you more MAryAnn…I lived right around the corner from Rao’s on 114st only 2 buildings away…..Playing in front of Rao’s stoop when they were closed was fun…Never bring back those days..

  14. Marty Dunetz says:

    Tommy Cheesecake was my great uncle. He was married to
    My grandgathers sister tessie

  15. Hello everyone!

    My name is Kelli Goodman and I am the manager of Volunteer Initiatives at the Harlem Educational Activities Fund (HEAF), a college access organization located in Central Harlem. HEAF provides an extended continuum of educational and youth development and leadership opportunities to high-potential, under-served students throughout the city. HEAF’s goal is to help students develop the intellectual curiosity, academic ability, social values, and personal resilience they need to ensure success in school, career, and life.

    As one of our electives for our 7th graders during our Summer Quest program this year, we are offering an Italian class and we thought that a tour of East Harlem’s Little Italy would be a perfect addition to the class. I am reaching out to see if anyone has any contacts who might be able to give a walking tour of East Harlem’s Little Italy and give the students a history of the neighborhood.

    There will be about 25 students in the class who would be on the tour, and usually visits take place between 2:30 and 3:30pm. We are hoping to have this trip on one of the following days:
    Wednesday, July 18
    Monday, July 23
    Wednesday, July 25

    I can be reached at kgoodman@heaf.org or via phone at 212-663-9732


    • Angela Bella says:

      Hi Kelli,
      Sorry, I just read your message. Unfortunately, I am unavailable next Wednesday, to take your class on a neighborhood tour. I have matinee tickets to take my family to see Wicked, on Broadway. Perhaps another time! Thanks for visiting my site!
      Best regards,

      • Hi Angela. Thanks so much for your response. We are somewhat flexible in our dates for a tour. Would you be available on Monday, July 30th, Wednesday, August 1st or Monday, August 6th for a tour? Thank you again,

      • Debbie Rizzo says:

        Hi Angela is there anyway my dad (nickname) Alahambra aka Tony Rizzo We livd on first ave between 115and 116 for years from the 1940 until the 1980s then my dad passed and we moved to NJ
        I come in every summer for the feast and also for mt carmel too
        My brother Anthony was the 16 year old that was shot ad killed across from Raos in 1969 on my moms day on july 6 1969 i
        I was 8 years old and i know itwas in the newspaper but i cant find the story, ive been searching archives but nothing

  16. Julie says:

    I grew up at 318 east shun 4th Street between first & secon Avenue. Any one out there from this part of Italian Harlem? I went to Saint Lucy’s School.

  17. Krista says:

    Hi Angela,

    My name is Krista and I am so happy I stumbled across your website! I am doing research on my relatives who lived on East 113th Street from the early 1900s. My great-great grandfather, Giuseppe Gargano, immigrated to America around 1895 and settled in the area with his wife, Margherita, who immigrated a couple years later. I’ve been so intrigued by the rich history of the area they lived, but have been unable to find any photos of East 113th Street. I was wondering if you may have any in your records, or could direct me somewhere that may?

    Thank you!

  18. Joeyj says:

    I grew up on 112 St and 2nd Ave
    Live there till 1967 remember the hot jelly apple push cart and you can double dip for 5 cent
    Joey j

  19. Richard Ventola says:

    Great web site for those who lived there. Does any one have information on the Jefferson Park Fresh Air Home in Long Branch NJ. We would go there for 10 days in the summer months with mother and children, no fathers. If was sponsored by the Church on 114th street and 2nd Ave facing the Park.

  20. Joseph Linzalone says:

    Tomorrow is Columbus Day, The Giglio Society is having a street renaming ceremony on the corner of 115st and Pleasant Avenue, It will be renamed Giglio Way. I will be attending after church. It’s great that our heritage and the future of Italian Harlem is kept alive.

  21. Steven Oliveri says:

    My dad in top pic with white hat and little girl in front of him in The Godfather May 1971

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