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Groppi, James Edward (16 November 1930–04 November 1985), Catholic priest and civil rights activist, was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, the son of Giocondo Groppi, a grocer, and Giorgina (maiden name unknown). James Groppi was the eleventh of twelve children. His father was a first-generation Italian immigrant who spoke broken English, a fact that Groppi said earned him “humorous contempt.” This early introduction to prejudice had a lasting influence on Groppi, particularly since his father insisted that the Groppi children refrain from retaliating in kind when they were subject to ethnic slurs. A second influence on his attitudes about prejudice came indirectly from the church; the Irish Catholic parish the Groppis were expected to attend was less than friendly to Italian parishioners, many of whom responded by having their children baptised in a parish church in Milwaukee’s Italian third ward....

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LaFarge, John (13 February 1880–24 November 1963), clergyman, journalist, and civil rights advocate, was born in Newport, Rhode Island, the youngest child of John La Farge, a painter and art critic, and Margaret Mason Perry, a granddaughter of Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry. Growing up in this distinguished Catholic family, LaFarge was exposed to such famous people as ...