The Wheat Harvest and Memory: Returning to Calabria



(photo: the “wheat harvest”; taken in Calabria and including Latella and Scordo family members)

The above photo is a favorite from my mother’s collection and was taken on the Latella family wheat field in southwestern Calabria (just outside of Bagnara) during the late summer harvest, most likely in the late 1950’s / early 1960’s.  The photo includes my Grandfather (Vincenzo Scordo), Grandmother (Rosa Scordo), and various uncles, aunts, and family friends.  My grandfather is located on the right in the 3rd row and my grandmother is in the second row on the extreme right (looking down).  Both of my Scordo grandparents have since passed away but my mother’s mother and father (Vincenzo and Vincenzina Latella) are alive and (somewhat) well in Calabria.  

I’ve posted the photo this afternoon because we’ll be returning to Calabria over the next week for our holiday/vacation and hope to visit the family wheat field (though uncultivated for a number of years)!  Our trip will have us touching down in Reggio Calabria and spending a few weeks in the Bagnara area (Pellegrina) in the southwestern part of the province.  We hope to make some day trips into Sicilia and central/eastern Calabria and, of course, enjoy the sea, food, and culture of the region.  
We’re excited to visit the land of my father and mother and reconnect with our first cousins, aunts and uncles, friends, and my Latella grandparents.   In fact, Nonno Latella is as feisty as ever though struggling with late stage dementia and Nonna Latella continues her normal routine tending to a few chickens and carrying on as one of the shrewdest villagers in Pellegrina.   
While I’m not one of those sappy bloggers who find romanticism in every old photo I come across, there’s something about the “wheat harvest” photo above that makes me proud to be the simple son of immigrant Italian parents.  


  1. Blessings as you journey to your homeland.

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