Commendatore Aldo Mancusi

Memories of Coney Island in the 1930s and '40s and growing up in Brooklyn in an Italian family

Commendatore Aldo Mancusi, the founder of the Enrico Caruso Museum of America, brings his Hofbauer street organ from the museum to our annual Coney Island History Day celebrations. Born in 1929, Mancusi shares his memories of coming to Coney Island as a young boy, growing up in an Italian immigrant family in Brooklyn, the effect that the Depression had on his father's employment and his own jobs as a "workaholic" teen. His interest in Enrico Caruso began with his father's record collection and grew as a result of his friendship with Michael Sisca, who bequeathed his Caruso collection to Mancusi with the idea that he start a museum. Located in the Homecrest section of Southern Brooklyn, the museum was founded in 1987.