Other Notable Deaths


May 20, 2007

GIORGIO CAVAGLIERI, 95 Spurred urban preservation

Giorgio Cavaglieri, an Italian Jewish architect who designed airfields for anti-Semitic dictator Benito Mussolini before fleeing to America and spurring the urban preservation movement, died Tuesday at Mount Sinai Medical Center in Manhattan of internal bleeding, said his nephew, Andrew Tesoro.

The architect's name is linked to some of New York City's most famous buildings.

He transformed the old Astor Library in the East Village into Joseph Papp's Public Theater and created the Delacorte Theater in Central Park.

Mr. Cavaglieri had graduated from Milan's Polytechnic University and was working for the insurance giant Assicurazioni Generali when Hitler came to power, with Mussolini as his ally. Generali was founded by Venetian Jews in the 1830s and became a leading insurer in what was then the Austro-Hungarian empire.

In 1939, after the family's assets were seized, Mr. Cavaglieri boarded a ship for the U.S. with his mother and sister. They moved into a $15-a-month apartment on Madison Avenue before Mr. Cavaglieri found work in Baltimore, where he met his wife, Norma Sanford. During World War II, the architect served in the Army as it helped liberate Europe from the Nazis and Fascists.

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