Club History

Woonsocket, traditionally thought of a French-Canadian city, also enjoys a strong Italian community that blossomed at the turn of the century. The Italians that settled in the Diamond Hill, Social, and Estes Street areas were primarily from the Venice and Marche regions of Italy.  In 1922 a group of men then began discussing the possibility of creating a non-profit social organization which would be the center for “furthering the moral and cultural interest of it’s members.” At the time, the group held meetings in a small second floor apartment located on the corner of Diamond Hill Road and Social Street. The building is known to many as where Dimeglio’s Pizza was later located. Several families, including Benetti, Guerra, Grazziani, and Gramolini mortgaged their personal homes for the purpose of obtaining the necessary funds to purchase building supplies and the property located at 947 Diamond Hill Road.  The men, mostly laborers by trade, put their own sweat and time into building the facility that stands today.  On March 10, 1928 The Italian Workingmen’s Club of Culture was incorporated in the state of Rhode Island.  Eight years since the initial discussions took place, on October 25th 1931, the members were able to celebrate the Inaugural Banquet in the new building.

The following picture captures the moment:

Guests at the start of an inaugural dinner held on October 25, 1931 for the opening of the new Italian Workingmen’s Club building on Diamond Hill Road. The hall in which the photograph was taken has been and still is the site of hundreds of Italian weddings, anniversary parties, dances and receptions of all kinds for the community’s Italian Americans, and others as well.

Explore Our Heritage In Our Own Hometown

Visit the Museum Of Work & Culture. Highlighting the contributions made by the individual ethnic communities that make up our city of Woonsocket, Rhode Island.