Dear America Wiki
Dear America Wiki

"Suddenly I understood, the way you wipe a window clear of mist. We must save ourselves. That is what our strike was about. But the strike was just the beginning. We must keep fighting."
—Angela Denoto[3]

Angela Maniscalco (née Denoto; born c. 1895) was the second of four children born to Pietro and Mrs. Denoto. At the age of fourteen she left school to begin working at a shirtwaist factory. Angela joined the local union and participated in a strike with her friend, Sarah Goldstein. She later witnessed the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire.


Early life[]

Angela was born in 1895 to Pietro and Mrs. Denoto.[1] She had an older sister Luisa, and two younger siblings, Vito and Teresa. They lived in the western part of Sicily. Her family emigrated to New York City around 1905.[4] They settled in a tenement on Elizabeth Street. Angela attended school for four years and learned English.

Working at a factory[]

At age fourteen in September 1909, Angela left school to begin earning money for the family. She found work at the same shirtwaist factory as Luisa and their friend, Rosa Riggio. There Angela made a new friend, Sarah Goldstein, who talked to her about joining a union. Luisa disapproved of Sarah, believing she was "trouble." Angela decided to continue her friendship with Sarah, which caused a strain in her relationship with Luisa. Sarah also introduced Angela to Clara Ruben, whom became another good friend. Two months later, the shirtwaist workers' strike started. Angela then joined the union Sarah belonged to. She was worried about her parents' reaction, but they only told her to "be careful."

During the strike, Angela began visiting the headquarters of the Women's Trade Union League. She often served as a translator for the Italian girls. A few weeks into the strike, Luisa and Rosa found new jobs at the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory. Angela felt a pressure to start working again, but she continued on with the strike. Vito, meanwhile, left school and began working as a shoeshine boy. In January 1910, her family "could not wait any longer" as they really needed her wages. Angela was disappointed about having to find a new job, before the end of the strike. Thankfully, only two days later, Angela's factory settled which allowed her to return to her old job instead of finding a new one.

In March 1910, Teresa fell ill and passed away, devastating the family. The following summer, Audenzio Maniscalco, Rosa's boyfriend, participated in the cloakmakers' strike. Angela was able to distract herself for a couple months with news of the strike. Her life went on normally until March 1911, when Angela witnessed the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire. She witnessed Rosa jumping to her death in order to escape the flames. She later learned that Clara had died in the fire as well. After the tragic event, Angela and Luisa finally mended their strained relationship. Angela and Sarah later attended a march for the unclaimed dead of the fire, finding some solace in the moment.

Later life[]

Around 1912, Audenzio began visiting the Denoto family often. Angela suspected that he was interested in Luisa, but he actually had intentions for her. She and Audenzio married in 1915 when she was twenty. They had three daughters Teresa, Rosie, and Claire. Angela's children all finished high school and Teresa went on to graduate from college. At seventy-three, her daughters helped Angela write a memoir based on her teenage diary. In 1971, she attended several commemoration events for the Triangle fire. Angela lived long enough to see her granddaughter, also named Angela, earn her doctorate in sociology.

Personality and traits[]

Angela was often noted as being "bright," including by her teacher Miss Kelly. She was naturally inquisitive and serious. Angela quickly became interested in unions and worker's rights, becoming immersed in the subject thanks to her friend Sarah. She described herself as being "in between" her talkative mother and her quiet father. Angela disliked "being the center of attention," such as when she had to translate for the union workers. Over time, she became more bold and was better able to speak in front of others.

Family tree[]

The Denoto-Maniscalco Family Tree
Pietro Denoto
(d. 1921)
Mrs. Denoto
Luisa Denoto
(b. 1893)
Angela Denoto
(b. 1895)
Audenzio Maniscalco
Vito Denoto
(b. 1896)
Teresa Denoto
Two children
Teresa Maniscalco
Rosie Maniscalco
Claire Maniscalco

Behind the scenes[]



See also[]

Dear America characters
Main characters

Remember "Mem" Whipple | Deliverance Trembley | Lozette Moreau | Catharine Logan | Prudence Emerson
Abigail Stewart | Lucinda Lawrence | María Rosalia de Milagros | Hattie Campbell | Mary Driscoll
Florence "Florrie" Mack Ryder | Susanna Fairchild | Clotee Henley | Amelia Martin | Emma Simpson
Sarah Nita | Phillis "Patsy" Frederick | Libby West | Priscilla "Pringle" Rose | Mary "Polly" Rodgers
Nannie Little Rose | Angeline Reddy | Sarah Jane Price | Teresa Viscardi | Anetka Kaminska
Zipporah Feldman | Minette "Minnie" Bonner | Angela Denoto | Margaret Ann Brady | Kathleen Bowen
Simone Spencer | Lydia Pierce | Nell "Nellie Lee" Love | Bess Brennan | Minerva "Minnie" Swift | Grace Edwards
Julie Weiss | Madeline Beck | Amber Billows | Piper Davis | Dawn "Dawnie Rae" Johnson | Molly Flaherty

Supporting characters

Antoinetta Viscardi | Leon Nasevich | Daniel Pierce | Erma Jean Love | Patrick Flaherty

Lists of characters by book

A Journey to the New World | I Walk in Dread | Look to the Hills | Standing in the Light
Love Thy Neighbor | The Winter of Red Snow | Cannons at Dawn | A Line in the Sand
Valley of the Moon | Across the Wide and Lonesome Prairie | So Far from Home | All the Stars in the Sky
Seeds of Hope | A Picture of Freedom | A Light in the Storm | When Will This Cruel War Be Over?
The Girl Who Chased Away Sorrow | I Thought My Soul Would Rise and Fly | The Great Railroad Race
Down the Rabbit Hole | Land of the Buffalo Bones | My Heart Is on the Ground | Behind the Masks
My Face to the Wind | West to a Land of Plenty | A Coal Miner's Bride | Dreams in the Golden Country
A City Tossed and Broken | Hear My Sorrow | Voyage on the Great Titanic | A Time for Courage
When Christmas Comes Again | Like the Willow Tree | Color Me Dark | Mirror, Mirror on the Wall
Christmas After All | Survival in the Storm | One Eye Laughing, the Other Weeping
My Secret War | Early Sunday Morning | The Fences Between Us | With the Might of Angels
Where Have All the Flowers Gone?