Giorno della Liberazione or Festa della Resistenza is celebrated in Italy on 25th April. It recognises the end of the Italian Civil War and the end of Nazi occupation of Italy in WWII in April 1945.
The liberation led to a referendum on June 2nd which resulted in the end of the monarchy and the creation of the Italian Republic.
April 25th was designated a national holiday in 1949 by Alcide De Gaspari, the last Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Italy.
There are celebrations all over Italy to mark the day. There are marching bands, parades and political rallies.
We attended an event in Vergemoli in Garfagnana. It seems difficult to believe that this tiny town with a population of about 100 people was caught up in the conflict, but the most northern of the fortifications the German army built across Italy, the Gothic Line, went right through the area.
Old army vehicles assembled in front of the comune.
Inside there was a collection of old photos. The tiny village saw lots of action and the village itself was bombed.
The photos are by Attilio Viziano.
Here you can see Vergemoli being bombed.
The people in front of this air raid shelter look remarkably cheerful.
This is a photo of Vergemoli. It is interesting to note that there are no forests around the town as there are today. All the land was cultivated in those days. The hills were planted with wheat, grape vines and vegetables. No doubt this helped the people survive the horrors of war.
I can’t imagine having to live through what these people did. What a pity we don’t seem to learn enough from past conflicts.
A book has been put together by Andrea Giannasi and Moreno Maffucci about the Gothic Line in Garfagnana where these photos and more have been included.
We bought it even though it is in Italian. It will be good practice to try to read it.