Collection Facts

Extent: 
225 items
Dates of Original: 
1943-1945
Collection Owner:
NYH Topic Area(s):

Historical Context

Angelo Solimino was born in Orange, NJ. His family moved to Queens when he was only one. He stayed in Queens until he was drafted into the Army. Mr. Solimino attended St. Joseph's Parochial Elementary School and later went to Bryant High School. Upon graduation he began work at a steel plant in the area.

Mr. Solimino was then drafted into the US Army at the age of twenty-one. Upon his discharge from the military, he obtained work at Astoria Federal Bank as a teller. Over Mr. Solimino's career at the bank, he was able to work himself up to VP of Mortgage Department. He worked for Astoria Federal Bank for over 36 years.

Mr. Solimino married his first wife, Lorretta, when he was in his twenties. They had five children together, one girl and four boys. His wife died Sept. 21, 1974.
Five years latter he met Rita at the bank; they fell in love and were married not long after. Mr. and Mrs. Solimino currently live in Syosset.

While in service to the Army, Mr. Solimino was sent with the 805 Tank Destroyers Co. C to North Africa. General Rommel only had four known places to supply in the desert. As the Allies tried to push Rommel up from the south, the 805th was put in Rommel's way to try to slow him down. They were capture by Rommel's troops in North Algeria on February 17th 1943. The 805th was sent to a transit camp via Italy and the Brennan Pass. After being capture one of Mr. Solimino's officers changed his pay book to make it appear that Mr. Solimino was an officer. This allowed him to go to a POW for officers opposed to a work camp for the enlisted men. While in the POW camp for 2 years, 2 month and five days, Mr. Solimino created this log to help keep his sanity. Upon being liberated by the Russians, on April 22, 1945; Mr. Solimino left the log behind. Someone picked it up and later returned it to Mr. Solimino.

Scope of Collection

The collection consists of a digital verison of a journal kept by Angelo Solimino during his service in World War II. The journal was later published by the War Prisoners Aid of the YMCA in Geneva, Switzerland in 2008 and deeded to the Pierson Middle School where Mr. Solimino transferred the Intellectual Property Rights to Susan Duff and then to Sag Harbor School District.