Minerva Maiullo – Park 39

THE GATEWAY TO BOSTON EDISON

“Like the famous Flemish tapestries that tell stories, we are the weavers, the creators of the patterns in our own lives,” wrote Minerva Maiullo in her 1972 memoir, A Tapestry of Memories.

There’s a handful of parks in Detroit honoring the lives of women.. Here’s one of them.

Minerva Maiullo’s life was filled with culture, elegance, art and philanthropy. Born in Ontario, Canada in October 1891, genealogical accounts trace her ancestral line to the royal Etruscan House of Tarquin whose kings ruled Rome hundreds of years before Caesar.

The lovely Minerva Maiullo on the cover of her 1970’s book. Photo credit: Ebay / A.S. Barnes Publishing

Her parents were both musically gifted. Minerva followed suit with demonstrated talents in song composition and voice training that prepared her for an operatic life. In 1925 she performed the role of Nedda in Il Pagliacci in Verona, Italy as an operatic debut. Regardless of professional praise and promise, Minerva chose familial instinct and married her childhood sweetheart, Anthony Maiullo. Together, they raised a family in Detroit’s grand Boston-Edison neighborhood.

 

The Maiullo’s led a busy and charmed life. Minerva was well known as Detroit’s cultural hostess. She entertained many celebrities at her once famous salons. She sang only at benefit performances and for close friends. A Detroit club woman, her philanthropic efforts included involvement with The Detroit Symphony Orchestra, DIA Founder’s Society, Detroit Grand Opera Association, Women’s City Club, Detroit Historical Society, Friends of the Detroit Public Library and on.

Welcome to historic Boston Edison
Welcome to historic Boston Edison

She was awarded a citation from the US War Department for founding and organizing the “Adopt a Soldier’s Son” program during WWII.

Her husband, Anthony Maiullo (1886-1976) was a prominent criminal and corporate Detroit attorney who once survived an assassination attempt when answering his front door. The Maiullo’s were benefactors of Detroit Institute of Arts, gifting sculpture to the museum.

WHO KNEW THESE WERE NAMED PARKS?

Two lots flank the entrance to Boston Edison neighborhood at Woodward and Chicago Blvd.  North lot
Two lots flank the entrance to Boston Edison neighborhood at Woodward and Chicago Blvd. North lot

 

 

South lot looking toward Woodward.  Nothing more than well mowed grass and a bus stop.  A nice green space though.
South lot looking toward Woodward. Nothing more than well mowed grass and a bus stop. A nice green space.

 

During the 1960’s, Anthony donated two lots at the corner of Chicago Boulevard and Woodward to the city of Detroit naming them “Minerva Maiullo Parks” in honor of his wife.

Today, these lots are unmarked and provide a buffer green space to the entrance of this historic Detroit neighborhood.  Minerva Maiullo passed in May 1973; she is buried in Holy Sepulchre Cemetery, Southfield, MI.

 

Historic Boston Edison neighborhood outlined in red. The address of prominent Detroiter’s. Maiullo park flanks Chicago at Woodward. The larger green space is Voigt Park. Map courtesy of Google.
 copyright 2015, andrea gallucci.