Commonwealth of Massachusetts
A Proclamation
His Excellency Governor Deval L. Patrick

Whereas This year marks the 500th anniversary of the first public viewing of Michelangelo Buonarotti's artistic masterpiece on the vaulted ceiling of the Sistine Chapel in the Palace of the Vatican in Rome depicting more than 300 biblical figures in brilliantly colored frescoes as well as the 500th anniversary of the death of the Italian navigator Amerigo Vespucci whose accomplishments inspired the German geographer Waldseemuller to use "America" as the name for the great land masses we know today to be  North and South America; and  

Whereas As we commemorate the 200th anniversary of the victory at sea by the USS Constitution against the British warship HMS Guerriere during the War of 1812, which earned her the indomitable name "Old Ironsides," we also celebrate the work of Michele Felice Corne, who was born in Italy and worked in Salem, Massachusetts, and whose 1803 painting of Old Ironsides was selected by the United States Postal Service's for its 2012 commemorative "Forever Stamp;" and

Whereas This year marks the 100th anniversary of the Lawrence, Massachusetts textile mill strike known as the "Bread and Roses" strike in which a coalition of immigrant workers from Italy and many other different nations, led by Joseph Ettore and Arturo Giovannitti of the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW) labor federation, successfully resisted an effort to reduce worker wages due to a legally mandated reduction in worker hours; and

Whereas This year marks the 100th anniversary of the birth of Dr. Salvador Edward Luria, winner of the Nobel Prize in Medicine in 1969 for his research in molecular biology; Dr. Luria not only distinguished himself as a professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), but through his roots at the University of Turin in Italy, he maintained a lifelong friendship and collaboration with two other distinguished Italian scientists, Dr. Renato Dulbecco, a virologist and winner of the 1975 Nobel Prize in medicine, who died earlier this year, and Dr. and Senator-For-Life Rita Levi-Montalcini, winner of the 1986 Nobel Prize in Medicine and the oldest living Nobel laureate; and

Whereas As we prepare for the 2013 celebration of Italian culture in the United States, we recognize the significant contributions of Italian-Americans in education, science and technology, commerce, agriculture, public service, and entertainment,

Now, Therefore, I, Deval L. Patrick, Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, do hereby proclaim October 2012  to be

ITALIAN HERITAGE MONTH

And urge all the citizens of the Commonwealth to take cognizance of this event and participate fittingly in its observance.

Given at the Executive Chamber in Boston, this twentieth day of September, in the year two thousand and twelve, and of the Independence of the United States of America, the two hundred and thirty-sixth.

By His Excellency

Deval L. Patrick
Governor of the Commonwealth

William Francis Galvin
Secretary of the Commonwealth

God Save the Commonwealth of Massachusetts