A sculptor of wide repute, A. N. Russo died late yesterday in the family home, 338 Madison Avenue, after a short illness.
Mr. Russo was born June 26, 1882, in Solofra, Province of Avellino, Italy. As a young man the deceased attended art school and worked in the studio ofhis father who was an artist in marble work.
After studying under Prof. Raffaele Belleazoo, director of the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Naples, he went to Rome to continue his training.
In 1905 Mr. Russo came to this country and worked on the New York Library. He then came to this city and developed a widespread reputation as an artist, both in sculpturing and painting.
Mr. Russo was particularly interested in church work and in 1921 went to Italy where he supervised the preparation ofthe marble for the altars which were installed in St. Peter's Cathedral when that edifice was redecorated. He also designed and built St. Lucy's Church in West Scranton and St. Patrick's Church, Wilkes-Barre.
In addition to his wife Maria, he is survived by two daughters, Mrs. A. Ciliberti, Brooklyn, N.Y., and Mrs. R. Davis Jr., New York City; three sons, Chief Petty Officer Primo with the Transport Command; 1st Lieut. Romolo, at Okinawa, and 1st Lieut. Remo, in France; four grandchildren and a sister, Mrs. Carmel Maffei, Italy.
The funeral will be held from the Barrett Funeral Home, 1 Platt Place, at a time to be announced. Friends may call after 3 o'clock this afternoon.
[Nicola Agostino Russo was born on June 29, 1882 according to his application for naturalization. He evidently went by Agostino instead of his first name, Nicola. He arrived in New York City on March 11, 1906 on the vessel Princess Irene. On May 15, 1906 he moved to Scranton, PA. and in a short while brought his family to Scranton. In 1909, while living at 422 Monroe Ave, Scranton, PA, he applied for citizenship. On May 23, 1913 he became US citizen. His daughter Ada Marie was born on June 19, 1906 in New York City. Primo Lorenzo was born June 19, 1907 in Scranton, PA. Romolo and his twin Remo were born in 1916.
According to Fr. Paul Cottone, pastor from 1973-2006, Agostino not only designed all the marble for St. Lucy’s Church but also went to Italy to supervise its construction. He also supervised its installation as it arrived from Italy. Due to World War I there was a delay of ten years before all the marble was finally installed in 1928. All the marble is hand carved white Carrara marble.]
We are in the process of trying to find better pictures. If you know of a relative of Agostino please let me know at email@example.com. or call the rectory at 570-347-9421. Thank you.
Vincent Russoniello, Architect, Succumbs
Scranton Times,Thursday, September 11, 1980
An illness proved fatal at home on Wednesday to Vincent Russoniello, 1302 Green Ridge St., Dunmore, an architect here for more than half a century, who designed many area churches and buildings. His wife the former Mary Cassese, died in 1978.
Son of the late Luigi and Giovanni Cardoni Russoniello, he was born in Italy, came to this country at the age of 15, and settled in this city. He began working as a stone cutter with the former Carlucci Stone Co., and later became a draftsman and an architect.
In 1921 he was certified as an architect by Pennsylvania and New York and joined the American Institute of Architects. He was a member emeritus of the institute.
Following World War II, he and his son Louis, formed the firm Russoniello & Russoniello. He was instrumental in the design of St. Lucy’s Church, St. Paul’s Church, the new home of the Little Sisters of the poor, Holy Family Church, St. Vladimir’s Catholic Church, St. Nicholas Greek Catholic church, Holy Ghost Church, Olyphant; St. Patrick’s Church, Wilkes-Barre, and Holy Ghost Church, Chester. He designed Allied Services for the Handicapped and the Affiliated Foods Warehouse.
A charter member of the Victor Alfieri Society, he was honored by the society in 1978 when the organization’s hall was renamed Vincent Russoniello Hal. He was a member and director of UNICO and a lifelong member of the Columbus Day Association of Lackawanna county, having been named ‘Man of the Year’ by the association in 1974. He was a communicant of St. Paul’s Church.
Surviving are two sons; Louis, Dunmore, and Lawrence, Clarks Summit; a daughter, Mrs. John Gallagher, Dunmore; eight grandchildren; two great-grandchildren, and nieces and nephews.
The funeral will be Saturday from the J. Robert McGoff Funeral Home, 1401 Capouse Ave., with Mass at 9:30 a.m. in St. Paul's Church.
Internment, Cathedral Cemetery. Viewing tonight, 7 to 9, and Friday from 2 to 4 and 7 to 9 p.m. Memorial contributions may be made to St. Joseph's Center, Adams Ave, Scranton.
Mr. Russoniello was born in San Andrea De Conza, Province of Avelino, Campania, Italy in 1890. His father, Luigi, was an expert surveyor. At the age of 15, his family immigrated to the United States leaving the port of Naples on the SS Piemonte on March 9, 1905 and arrived in New York City on March 29, 1905. When he left Italy, Victor Emmanuel III was the King of Italy.
The family eventually moved to Scranton were Russoniello began in public school but soon was working for Carlucci Cut Stone Company of Scranton in their quarry near Nicholson, PA. He was promoted to the office where he learned to make sketches and do project plans. By 1908 Russoniello became interested in architecture and embarked on a series of courses offered through the International Correspondence School, and in a short while he was working with a local architect, John J. Howley, in Scranton. By 1921, having the practical experience from working with Howley and the academic experience provided by ICS, Vincent Russoniello established an independent office with Gaylord Price, also a product of the Howley firm. This partnership lasted for approximately a year, and then Russoniello worked on his own, maintaining his ties to the quarry and stone business by taking on drafting for the Wyoming Cut Stone Company. Russoniello's experience with stone masonry would aid him in the many church projects which he undertook as part of his independent practice. He planned over 300 houses and commerical places as well as many churches. According to Balch Institute archivists, one of the largest projects launched by him during this time was for St. Patrick's Roman Catholic Church in Wilkes Barre, PA (1929-1930), where his expertise in stone work, along with his ties to Italy and Italian artists and artisans, proved extremely influential in the final product. [Information in this paragraph provided by the American Architects and Buildings database.]
According to the Petition for Naturalization (June 4, 1917) he was married to his wife Mary who was born in East Weymouth, Mass. And Louis, his son, was born on April 14, 1917. According to the 1930 Census the household contained Vincent (age 40), Mary (age 30), Louis, Jennie and Lawrence. Mr. Russoniello’s mother, Jennie, also resided with them.
(We are trying to find a better picture of Mr. Russoniello. If you can help, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call the office at 570-347-9421. Thank you)