Department of Correction
A former "Sand Hog" for 17 years, Abbate has been a member for almost 10 years. He attends union meetings regularly and continues his membership in two other unions. Abbate says a union is the most important organization to belong to in life, and is the only way to enter the middle class. He enjoys cooking Italian food and traveling with his wife, Therese.
Hercules Cornish went to work for the Housing Authority as a caretaker J in 1952 and retired 24 years later as a stores worker. He died the year following this interview, which was conducted in June 1999.
Originally I was from Harlem, but when I came out of the service in 1945 my wife had moved to the Bronx, so I moved there, too. I went to work for the New York City Housing Authority in 1952.