Corina Favorito

Interviewer: Michael Kline
Date: June 4, 2013
Place of Interview: Concord Public Library, Lower Library
Transcriptionist: Stevie L. Rodriguez

Click here for audio. Audio file is in .mp3 format.

Corina FaoritoMichael Kline: 0:00:02.5 So, I'm Michael Kline. I'm here with Carrie Kline, in some of the staff area in the lower library. It's the afternoon of June 4th, a very beautiful afternoon outside. Would you please say, "My name is—," and introduce yourself?

Corrina Favorito: My name is Corina Favorito.

MK: Is there more to your name than that? Like a maiden name?

CF: You want the whole thing?

MK: Yes.

CF: Corina Vitali Favorito, and I live on—

MK: And we never ask people's ages, but maybe give us your date of birth.

CF: I was born in December of 1937.

MK: '37, okay.

Carrie Kline: And the day?

CF: The 17th.

CK: Thanks.

MK: And maybe start off—tell us about your people and where you were raised.

CF: Well, I was born in Milford, Massachusetts, but my parents were actually living in Providence, Rhode Island at the time. She wanted to be near her large family, so they went to Milford just for my birth, and then we moved back to Providence immediately thereafter. So I was actually raised, for the most part, in Providence, Rhode Island. But I have a large extended family in both Providence and throughout central Massachusetts.

MK: Talk a little bit about who they are.

CF: Okay. Well, on my mother's side, my mother was actually born in Vermont, in Hardwick, Vermont, because her father was a stone carver and that was an area of granite quarries. And so there were many people there from certain parts of Italy, Whales, Sweden, who came to the United States to work in the quarries. Many times these people moved from quarry to quarry. Many of the quarries evidently were owned by one company, for example, and so they had quarries in different states. So at the time my mother was born, they happened to be in Hardwick, Vermont with a number of other people. And from there they moved to the Milford Punk Granite quarry area in Milford, Massachusetts. And he spent—. So my grandfather, whom I never knew, spent the rest of his life working as a carver. He worked on the Union Station , which is made of Milford pink granite in Washington, D.C. He worked on the Baltimore Post Office, I believe, and also the Boston Public Library. It was only recently that I realized, found out that he was a carver, because he was a very small man, and I couldn't imagine him working in the actual quarries themselves. But I suspect he did a lot of the finishing work. Of course, as a result of this occupation, he died very young of silicosis which is what many of the quarriers got especially those whom worked inside what they call "the sheds," because that's where they did the finishing work. And of course there was much more dust that they absorbed. And my grandmother then brought up nine children on her own.

MK: 0:03:40.6 Her name was?

CF: Her name was Karina. Her maiden name was Strizzi, and the married name Filose. And the grandfather on my mother's side was Antonio Filose, and he was the person who worked. And they would move to Peekskill, New York, there were quarries in, I think, in Quincy, Massachusetts, but primarily they worked—. He worked in Vermont and in Milford, Massachusetts, where he also owned a General Store. And they had nine children, and there is two or three generations of them now.

MK: Can you talk about her life—

CF: My grandmother's?

MK: As the wife of a stone quarry worker moving from camp to camp.

CF: She came from a small town in the mountains of Abruzzo, where actually it's well-known because the King had his hunting lodge there and there are ski lodges there now. Then she came to the United States with her widowed mother in the 19th century. And I think there were four or five sisters—Karina, Rose, Florence—four or five sisters who came with my great-grandmother. And they settled in the Leominster-Marlboro-Milford area. Then they all married. But my grandmother met my grandfather and they married in Milford. And she would run the store and then she would take care of the boarders who were single—one of whom was a single designer. He designed the quarries' decorations. For example, if they were decorating a façade on a library, he—this man was the artist. And my mother said that when she was very little, she would sneak up to his studio and borrow his drawing paper and draw. And he wouldn't be happy. And so my grandmother had nine children, ran the store, took care of a boarder or two, and in addition to that she was quite well-known as a midwife. And very often if there was a difficult birth in Milford, one of two of the doctors would call upon her to help. And she often helped out with that as well. Very—. When she was very young, and they were in Hardwick [Vermont], they sent for my grandfather's mother and sister. And they were in this very southern part of Italy, where there are palm trees, et cetera, and they arrived in the port of Boston in December, after having been shipwrecked off the coast of Boston. It was a tremendous storm. I mean, the ship didn't sink, but a lot of it disappeared into the ocean. Well, then he brought them up to Vermont where they had never seen snow. But they settled in soon enough. And then ultimately, all moved to the Milford area. And there are of the nine children—let's see, one of them, only one is left.

MK: Really?

CF: 0:07:09.4 My uncle, who is 92. And he is one of the last of the Pearl Harbor survivor's here in Massachusetts. He went through the whole Pacific and North African campaigns. And, well, he was on the Pennsylvania when it was bombed in Pearl Harbor. And then he waited for the commissioning of the new U.S.S. Massachusetts, and he was the store supervisor on that as a teenager, really, all through very single campaign until the war was over. And he still resides in Milford.

Mario Favorito: With a steel trap mind, he'll tell you—he'll tell you—

MK: He's clear?

CF: Oh yes.

MF: Absolutely.

CF: In fact, he was recently interviewed for the December 7th anniversary, which was, I think now two years ago—

MF: Yeah.

CF: — of the Pearl Harbor anniversary. He was interviewed in the local Boston television station, as well as the Worcester Telegram, which is a central Massachusetts newspaper.

MK: How long of an interview was it?

CF: A long interview. I have it at home. He spoke of things in that interview that I can remember my mother telling me as a child, but I had never heard him say it. Because he didn't talk about it very much over the years. But the fact that he was able to—. He was on guard duty at the very top of the Pennsylvania with two other people, and when he called to the Captain that there were—. They saw planes coming in, he [the Captain] wasn't sure that they were being serious. "And then all of a sudden," he said, "they flew so close to us. They had their hatches open." And they could actually see their white silk scarves around their necks blowing in the wind as they came down and attacked. And he, he had some trauma for years and years after that. But we never knew it until really very recently that he started talking to us. He probably spoke to his own children more about it, but—. So it was after that that he was sent home and they asked him to wait. And he was on duty in Boston for a long time until that Massachusetts was completed. Then they went to North Africa, and he said they picked off whatever in the Mediterranean—

MF: It was a French battleship.

CF: 0:09:34.7 And the last time we talked to him, he said, "Oh, and by the way, and then we sailed to a southern port." Where was that?

MF: Norfolk—Newport News.

CF: Norfolk. They went to Norfolk, and they were—. He was the ship store man, and whoever his commanding officer was at the time said, "Now, we're on a secret mission. I want you to go out and buy 1200 pairs of sunglasses." He said, "How secret can it be, we're obviously going somewhere warm, so we must be going to the Pacific." So they went out and found 1200 pairs of sunglasses and then they sailed through the canal.

MF: Yep, sailed through the canal and then—

CF: And then up. He just told us this last year. And then they went into the Pacific and they were there for a long, long time.

MF: And the interview, from my understanding, was long enough and worthy enough that it's supposedly going to be Archives at the Library of Congress.

CF: Oh, that was part of it. He's been archived at the Library of Congress, that's right. That's how it began. They sent former officers around the area. I don't know why they waited so long, but anyway—two years ago. And a man from—

MK: Well, this certainly will be of interest to the Archive here.

CF: Oh, okay, well the Library of Congress has now archived his interview with this former Air Force officer, who was assigned to do a video and an interview with him. So then my dad, actually, who lived with us until he died in '91, he was one of the last of the World War I veterans who happened to be living here in town when he died. Yeah, because he lived a long—. He was 95 when he died. So he had gone in and, I don't know when he came from Italy—.

MF: He was 18—1919 was when—

CF: And then he enlisted in the Army, in with the act of 1919, which gave citizenship to immigrants who had served, by 1921 he had become a citizen. So it was—. But my uncle was kind of the hero of the family. Although, my grandmother was quite a hero too, she did a lot of interesting things. She was sort of a medical pioneer in the sense that she loved research. They researched a new method of treatment for cancer to be tried on her. The state of Massachusetts used to have a cancer research hospital, which is no longer in operation. It's—. I don't even know where it is exactly, southern Massachusetts somewhere.

MF: 0:12:19.1 (???) (inaudible)

CF: 0:12:20.4 Around, somewhere around Foxboro, I don't really know where it is, but at any rate—. So she had a very unusual form of cancer of the reproductive system. And so they said, "We can't do anything for you, but we would love to try this new method, which is radiation." And they had never really used it very much before. It was very, very experimental at the time. So this would have been '41-'42. So she went and had it done. And she was very ill for a time, a very small person. Eor someone who did so much with all those children, she was a tiny, efficient person. And then she began to get better. And a couple of years went by. And then the hospital called and she answered the phone, and they said, "We're checking up on Mrs. Falose, because we want to know, we want to clear up our records, and who's speaking?" And she said, "Well, this is Mrs. Falose." And she said they were just kind of amazed that she was still—. She was their success. They didn't realize that she was still living. And so they said, "You have to come." So she had to go back to the hospital so they could interview her and check on her. So she was kind of one of the early successes in the use of radiation.

MK: What a story.

CF: Yeah. It's kind of interesting how these little—. Just an ordinary family, so many things can happen in one small group of people.

MK: Yeah, her story is a perfect example of that.

CF: Yeah.

MK: So tell us about your own childhood a little bit and your path to Concord, and what your life here has been like.

CF: My childhood, well, then on my father's side, he came from—. My father and his—. I don't know when he came. He and his brother—. His father was already here doing business. He came from a family that had property in Italy and business, maybe a General Store kind of thing and property. So his father came to the United States, maybe at the turn of the century, to see how things were going here, and whether he wanted to start a business here. And then when the first world was started, he really somehow decided he wanted his sons here in the United States and not in Italy. Italy was an ally of the United States I think at the First World War. Isn't that right? But I think he just didn't want the boys to be involved with fighting the German Kaiser, as he put it. So they came here to help set up a business. And, ultimately, my grandfather returned and the boys stayed here, the two brothers. The rest of the family never came. They all stayed there through both wars. And my father did a number of things, but he ultimately ended up in Milford where he had a lot of extended family, aunts, cousins. And he was sort of involved in various businesses. He owned a small sort of manufacturing company, and he started a lunchroom. The sort of manufacturing company didn't last too long because of the Depression. People weren't paying their bills. He sold to big like dance halls, restaurants, and things like that. So then he had a little lunchroom.

MF: But he paid all his vendors.

CF: 0:15:47.6 He paid all of his vendors, right. He never—. But anyway, so we moved back and forth from Providence to Milford maybe twice. And then ultimately settled in Providence where he worked in the jewelry industry and then ultimately in—, with the United States government, the Navy department in Rhode Island. Because he had carpenter skills as well. His one insistence for us was that we absolutely get an education, because as far as he was concerned, if you had an education in this country, you just could do much better. And the Depression, and, you know, it was difficult. And he also worked at the Walsh-Kaiser Shipyard during World War II, because he was too old actually to be serving at that point. And he already served in the First World War. He spent the First World War, most of it, as is my understanding, at Fort Dix, New Jersey, building coffins, caskets for all the people who were in the services. Not those in battle, but those who were dying of the influenza epidemic. So he did—. That's basically what he did. In some respects, it was very—. Because he had the skill, but two it was nice that he didn't have to go abroad and face that awful war. So then we settled there. My sister and I went to school in Providence, a little K-3 school right across the street from our home. And then another elementary school, which then was 4-6. We had wonderful teachers. The Providence public schools were just fabulous in those days. And then I went to junior high school, mine was Gilbert Stuart, because of course he's a famous Rhode Island painter. And then I left to go to a public college prep school, which is called the Classical High School. They were still, at the time I went in, teaching Greek and Latin, and all the basic pre-college courses. And from there I went to Rhode Island College, which at the time was Rhode Island College of Education. And I majored in education and English. Then instead of doing the usual thing, which was to go off and teach or get married. I decided to go to Brown University and I got a Ford Foundation Fellowship to study English literature. And I got my Master's. Then I stopped just short of my Ph.D., because I got involved in the Kennedy campaign while I was in graduate school. So I finished my Master's thesis, and then I decided to move with a number of friends to Washington.

MF: 0:18:39.2 She was a "Kennedy Golden Girl."

CF: (laughter) That's what we were called, the Kennedy Golden Girls. Previous to that I had volunteered also in—

MK: The Kennedy—

CF: --Golden Girls.

MK: What was that about?

CF: Well we just wore Kennedy hats. You know those white—. They look like straw hats.

MF: Straw hats for the days.

CF: And then blue dresses and bandanas that said, "Kennedy," on them. And whenever there was a tea or a rally we would appear as a group. But we were all sort of friends. I was supposed to be writing my Master's thesis, I was not supposed to be out on the streets of Providence dressed up. But it was kind of my outlet for graduate school, because you know how that can be. So then after I got my degree, I followed many of my friends to Washington. And I lived there and worked at the United States Office of Education under HEW. I was assistant to the Director of Special Education Fellowship programs. And that's where I met my husband. (laughter) And then we moved back to New England in the 60s.

MK: When and why did you come back here?

CF: Well, we were engaged to be married and we wanted to be closer to our families. We didn't feel that Washington was a good place to stay to bring up children. There weren't—. I missed the New England towns. The idea of a town center. Everything was sort of suburban or the inner city. There was no in between it seemed. And so we looked around, and he was able to get a job in Connecticut. And then we went to—. So our children were actually born in West Hartford, Connecticut. And then after a few years, we moved to Concord because he changed positions to another company. And so he went from being a government attorney to corporate law. So we've been here ever since. And many of my friends who did go down to Washington at the same time, many of them are still there, married and settled there. So there was that whole group of us from Rhode Island who all exited. It was a very wonderful time to be there. And also a very sad time, of course, because, you know, one day I go up in the elevator with—.The U.S. Office of Education at the time shared its headquarters, which was quite small, with NASA, which was also quite small. We had three floors and NASA only had two floors. That was how small, when I think about it, the government was at the time in the early 60s. And I remember getting in to the elevator one day and there were all of the astronauts. All of them carrying the Gemini plans. It was just—. I was just dumbfounded. I couldn't even say, "Hello," I couldn't wait to get out of the elevator. (laughter) but it was so exciting to be there with Glenn and all of these other famous astronauts, just all crowded into an elevator with me. That's wonderful.

MK: Could you imagine they might go into orbit, or--?

DF: 0:21:52.0 I don't know. I thought, "Oh my gosh." I suppose someone else would have just kept riding, but I got off at my floor and just left. But that was wonderful. And another time it was October '63, I saw Haile Selassie come in from Union Station with the President and First Lady. We left the office to go down and wave to them. And then a month later he was back again for the funeral. (crying) I'm sorry, I can't talk about it.

MK: You have. You've spoken beautifully about it.

CF: I was down there with my roommate in front of the cathedral. And they were all there, King Saud of Saudi Arabia. Is that his name? King of Saudi Arabia.

MF: Yeah. It was Faisal, I think.

CF: Faisal?

MF: I think so.

CF: General De Gaulle, I could see them because they were the tallest people in the whole procession. And we were behind several layers of people. And then Haile Selassie was there. I don't remember, it was just so many people.

MK: This was at the—.

CF: At the funeral, in front of the cathedral.

MK: At the funeral of—?

CF: President Kennedy. But it was so funny, here I'd seen this man in my history books. And then to see him twice within a month was just too much, really.

MK: Sensory overload.

CF: It was really difficult. So then we moved here. And we've been here ever since, since 1970.

MK: Well your committee work in Concord is something of a legend.

CF: Mine?

MF: Un-hunh (affirmative).

CF: 0:23:50.2 His maybe.

MF: No, no, no.

CF: Mine?

MF: Yeah.

CF: What have I done? Which legend are we talking about? (laughter)

MK: What haven't you done? I wonder if you'd like to—

Carrie Kline: You moved in '70. Tell us some of the highlights.

CF: I had two little children in the 70s, so mostly I just have ideas of what went on there in terms of—. I think of it as a time of transition. So I had 3-year-old and a 1-year-old when we moved here in 1970. So mostly I was in the house with them. (laughter) And I had never lived this far north, so there was so much snow it seemed. And it was so cold all the time. But there was still bus service at the corner of our street in West Concord that went all the way to Cambridge, and I think it was a throwback from the old trolley-line in the early part of the 20th century. And then in the junction we had still freight trains operating. And what's now the shopping plaza was an old Victorian farmhouse with apple orchards. And then there were old stores that are no longer there, like the Hayes Shoe Store and the West Concord Post Office, which is really, has been rebuilt. But all of these little places were still there and have changed while we've been here. For example—.

MK: They were family-owned places.

CF: Family-owned places like the Dovre Ski-binding and the Hayes Shoe Store. And there were still some left but not as many. And then the children started school in the 70s, and they went to what was called the Harvey Wheeler Elementary School, which was actually built on the site of a grammar school that Rose Kennedy actually attended, because she lived in West Concord as a child with her father. Yes. And so on that same site, ultimately, was build the Harvey Wheeler School, which is one of the first that was built in the Spanish style with tile roofs. And it's still being used for a senior center and for an after-school and nursery school program. But my children were there in K-2, and then it closed. They were the last to go there for kindergarten and first grade. And then they went to the Thoreau School, which was a 60s school. And I didn't really get particularly active until they got much older. The highlights that I can remember of the 70s was the bicentennial, which was a big deal. The bicentennial of the battle of Lexington and Concord. And so the schools had the children, the children were all in colonial dress, it seemed all the time. My mother made them colonial costumes. They had capes, and aprons, and bonnets. They wore them to school. They wore them to birthday parties. They wore them to the big parade. And then they had a town meeting for the 4th or 5th graders, I can't remember what year it was, at the First Parish Church. And our daughter played—. Well only men could speak at town meetings, so my daughter dressed in male colonial clothes so that she could speak as a town meeting member. You know, this kind of reprising the town meetings of the 18th century. And then the next big thing I kind of remember—.

Well, to go back to the bicentennial, the celebrations were amazing. But we had also--. Every year there's always been a military ball around Patriot's Day at the Armory. And that year was a very big military ball. And people dressed either in colonial dress or regular formal clothes, and the military actually dressed in dress uniforms and come to the ball. And it's always been a tradition, I don't know if it's still done, but certainly in those days. After the ball was over around midnight, we all would walk downtown to the First Parish Church, and then a local doctor would ride in on a white horse reprising—.

MF: 0:28:11.9 We think it was William Dawes.

CF: But we can't remember who it was who actually warned the Concordians that the British were coming. So every year around midnight after we went to that ball, particularly during the bicentennial year, we would walk down to the First Parish and watch him come in. It's hard to explain that kind of a holiday to people who don't live here.

MF: The surgeon Dr. Seymour DeMaury, he would ride in on his white horse at midnight. (laughter)

CF: And then the day of the huge parade in '75, President Ford was coming. And we were in a grand stand, because my husband was on one of the committees of preparation for the bicentennial holiday. And the children were dressed and we were waiting, and waiting, and waiting for President Ford to come. Well, there had been demonstrations. People had come across the river down at the bridge where he was supposed to be speaking. And as a result the Secret Service wouldn't allow him to stay very long or walk in the parade, and so all we actually saw of him was being whisked by us very, very quickly with a local Congresswoman in the car. So we didn't actually—.

MF: My children were disappointed.

CF: 0:29:31.8 Very disappointed. But the bicentennial was quite an amazing event for the whole town. And then the next really big thing that happened that we can recall is the blizzard of '78. I mean, that was—. It snowed forever. And the plows were stuck. And the school closed for weeks, several weeks. And the children loved it. And eventually we let them out. At first there was so much snow it really wasn't safe to do that. My husband shoveled, and shoveled, and shoveled for days to get a path about a foot wide out of the front door and down to—. In case of fire, away from the house. But then we had neighbors in. Somehow we had plenty of food. Our milkman managed to deliver milk, because he was coming from west of here, so he wasn't on any highway. And we had a birthday party and everyone came, because the children were so bored they just couldn't wait to go somewhere else besides their own front yards. But that was quite an event, too, along with '75 and the bicentennial.

There were things that were different then when the children were all little. All the yards where we lived—and I think pretty much everywhere—were kind of open to one another. And throughout the neighborhood the children were just able to play quite freely in each other's yards. We had a bell that I would ring in case I needed them for anything. But pretty much they were out. And there was no such thing as a play-date. They just played outside after school until it was time to come in. And that was pretty simple and maybe very old-fashioned, looking back on it now, when everything is so much more arranged.

CK: This is fabulous.

CF: You wanted me to talk about my volunteer—? My volunteerism started when they were in elementary school, starting around 5th grade. I served on the board of the parent's group. And I helped with the teachers whenever they needed anything special, like a special project. I would do a holiday cooking with one group or I'd help with—.

MF: A holiday cooking?

CF: Well, one Easter the children wanted to make something for the holiday. So I brought in a special Italian recipe that my grandmother would make at Easter-time, an Easter basket cookie that has an egg baked right into it. And so all the children make them. And then I tried to (laughter)—I tried to bake them in the school cafeteria oven and it was a convection oven, which I had never come across before. And I had foil on the pans, and then when I went back, the cookies were fine, but the foil had become atomized. There were bits of foil all over the inside of the oven of the school cafeteria and they were about to come in to start cooking the lunches. So I (laughter)—so I had to find gloves to get all the foil out before someone had caught me—, that I had ruined their ovens. But the kids loved the little Easter basket cookies. So all's well that ends well. And then I did other things with the parent group. In middle school we had a parent group there and I became the President of that. And we had seminars and meetings. Whenever there were issues, I was able to meet with the principals.

MK: Do you remember the issues of the time?

CF: 0:33:12.1 I can't right now.

MK: That's all right.

CF: I just kind of met on a general basis to talk about things that parents were concerned about, maybe once a month or so with the principles. There were two principles and the superintendent of schools, very often. And we would just meet. But I don't remember any—. Nothing really comes to mind particularly. And then we were parents who really felt that we should be involved. Somehow the parents in the 70s felt that they needed to—. I shouldn't be making blanket statements, but the parents of the 70s seemed to feel that they should give the kids plenty of space. And somehow, this new group of parents including me, felt that we wanted to know what was going on with our children. Because a lot of us had moved in from out of town. And so anyway, we formed kind of a parent group at the high school level as well. And we were one of the first groups ever to, when our children entered 9th grade at the high school. to give kind of a formal dinner to the whole faculty, so that they would know that we liked them, and that we were happy that our children were there. And I think they enjoyed that quite a bit. And we would meet, then we set up meetings with the principle. And once a month a group of us would meet with the principle to discuss issues. And they weren't—. We weren't all the parents of freshman, but it was just a place where you could air things.

MF: It was rather collegial actually. They talked about issues and tried to work through them.

CF: And since our children were involved in the marching band, and all the musicals, and things like that—then I became kind of involved in that with making sure the costumes were clean and making costumes for events. My daughter was lead in The King and I, she was Anna.

MK: You were the seamstress?

CF: I helped. Well, they would rent, but then a lot of work had to be done beside that. We had a 5 &10 in town, we still do, which actually still sold snoods, which are hairnets that catch a little bun, so that in The King and I, when Anna was dancing, she had to have a purple snood to match her gorgeous dress. And they still had that snood at the 5 & 10 in West Concord. So I didn't have to do very much. Then after they left and went to college, of course, things changed a little. Somewhere in there I was on the bus committee.

MK: You were?

CF: I don't remember what decade it was.

MF: Late 70s.

CF: Late 70s. People decided that we needed a community bus for people who didn't actually drive, people who were older or didn't drive or just didn't want to drive. And so we formed through the town meeting process, a community bus committee. My husband was first on it, and then I took over his—. There were three of us. We did everything from negotiating with the bus drivers--. We hired the school bus drivers when they weren't actually driving. Because we own our own busses here and we have our own school bus drivers who were hired by the town. So whenever they weren't driving, we set up schedules three days a week, I think it was, for them to go around certain routes and pick up people, take them downtown shopping. And at the time there was a big Woolworth's there and there were shops, and then to certain supermarkets, and then pick them up on a regular basis. And this went on all year long for years, for quite a number of years this community bus, servicing people. And it's amazing how many people used it. Some people would just get on for the ride, to go for a ride.

MK: 0:37:12.1 Would they pay enough to support it though and the gas that was burned?

MF: No.

CF: They didn't pay at all.

MF: The town.

MK: Who paid?

MF: The townspeople paid.

CF: The town paid.

MK: So you had to get this through the town?

CF: We did.

MF: Yes, I did.

CF: Well, you were involved in that beginning part. So that was a few years that we worked on that. And it went on for quite a number of years. And then things changed a little and there is—. I'm not sure if the senior center still has something like that or not. There are other forms now of transportation that may be available. I'm not familiar with them. But that was kind of fun. And then the children in the neighborhood used to call me "the bus lady," because they would call when they were on school break, they realized that by the age of 10 or 11, their parents would let them go off. So they would all gather in front of my house, which was the bus stop for our neighborhood and take the bus downtown, and go to Woolworth's and have a soda or an ice cream, and then get back on. And they felt so independent, because they didn't have to have someone drive them downtown. But this was during school breaks, when they had, you know, the time to do that. It was kind of fun for them. But mostly it was older people, I think, primarily. I don't know what I did next.

MK: 0:38:23.7 It's so interesting to have sat through scores of interviews with people in Concord, and to hear the details of these social models that all seem to—for some reason—they all seem to originate here or at least to surface here. I mean, what you've just described is first of all, such an absolutely humane concept.

CF: Yes.

MK: And then secondly, it's an efficient use of bus drivers who otherwise would be sitting around.

CF: That's right, who would be sitting around. And the interesting thing is, I guess they were on an hourly—. I don't' know if they were on an hourly at the time.

MF: I think it was on an hourly, and if—

CF: And then when we paid them, we also paid them on an hourly.

MF: --and it had to be free, because if you charged, then you get into all sorts of regulations.

CF: The thing is that I had an ulterior motive. I lived in the city all of my life, so in Providence, I either had public transportation. Providence, Rhode Island is a very small city, so you could get from place to place very easily. You either walked, or you took public transportation, or if I were in my carol at the John Hay Library at Brown until midnight, my father would pick me up. So I didn't really need to drive. And I had friends, and so I never really drove. And then I moved to Washington and we took taxis, or we took buses, or my roommates had cars. So when I moved here, I felt as if I were in the middle of the countryside, because I didn't—. So I was so happy to have that little bus. I would do a little grocery shopping with the bus and take the little children down, because—. And then they would be going to nursery school. And after a while I learned to drive and got a car myself. But so I had sort of an ulterior motive to get involved with the community bus, because I wanted—.

MK: Oh, so there was a little self-interest in this. I see what you're saying.

CF: Definitely some self-interest.

MK: 0:40:12.2 Why don't we switch horses, as the—

CF: The other volunteer work—. I had a small antiques business for a while and then in the 90s I got involved with the Visitor's Center in the central part. Because of my business I was aware of the fact that we had great numbers of people who came to town to shop, not necessarily come to tour the historic sights. And there were no public facilities for them. And also the Visitor's Center was a charming booth on the outside of town. So as a result of several town meetings, et cetera, we were able to pass a town meeting resolution to build a Visitor's Center and public facilities in the center of town. And after several years, that actually, with very generous contributions from business partnerships and individuals, to build a restroom and Visitor's Center downtown. And one of the banks actually offered part of their garden to us for that. So that's right down the road here. And that was pretty much what I—, the last of the most difficult volunteer things that I did in the late 90s.

MF: Yeah, and the finance committee.

CF: Oh, I forgot about that. And I did serve briefly on the finance committee, but that was just a very—part of someone else's term that I served.

MK: Well, congratulations on your magnificent civic history—personal history.

CF: (laughter) Well, he's the one that has—.

MK: Well, we'll see about that..

0:41:54.4 (end of audio)

Corina and Mario Favorito

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Text and image mounted 28 May 2014 -- rcwh.