Itinerary of Freedom. (Itinerary 1)
The origins of humankind in Modena’s Western
Apennine are lost in the mists of time; since the earliest
Mesolithic settlements, through the Bronze age, up to the
Etruscans, the Ligurians and the Romans passing through the Middle Ages
and the fervour of those centuries, up to nowadays, to the most tragic and painful
periods of contemporary history such as the Second World War.
This large Apennine region and its inhabitants were the protagonists of the
Resistance movement that led to the withdrawal of the German troops and to the
liberation of Modena’s area in 1944-1945. Follow the Itinerary of Freedom and
allow you to be carried away by the very intense feelings of that tragic period,
but also by the euphoria of a finally ended war. Follow either on foot or
by mountain bike the several trails evoking the events of those years.
During your journey through forests, ridges, and ancient villages, imagine to
move the clock of your time machine back to 1944 and you will soon find yourself
marching along with a Resistance brigade, listening to the speeches of the young
fighters and the strategic plans of their commanders and you will feel adrenalin
flowing inside your body as you observe people fleeing from a combing out operation.
Riding your bicycle imagine you are running to the side of a brave
Resistance courier towards his final destination.
Stepping inside an ancient court, imagine that the old farmer welcoming you is a
child again who tells you about her past memories full of fear and hope.
There are many places that can evoke history and there are many people you can
meet who experienced it personally. Your excursion can start in Montefiorino,
where from 18th June to 2nd August 1944, the first Resistance Republic was
declared, an experience that can be considered unique in Italy under many respects.
Its imposing medieval castle is home to the Resistance Museum inaugurated
in 1979 housing an important collection of objects, weapons, uniforms,
letters and documents of the Resistance fight as well as a detailed
historical description of the Republic life.
Near Monchio, stop in Monte Santa Giulia Resistance Park, featuring
a wonderful nature and large forests. At the entrance of the park you can also
admire fourteen single-piece statues commemorating the massacres of Monchio,
Costrignano, Susano and Savoniero in 1944.
In each hamlet around Montefiorino you can see inscribed pillars and other
monuments commemorating fights, battles, and the people killed by the Nazi invaders
or by local Fascists, in particular in Monchio, where a monument has been erected
to foster forgiveness, reconciliation, peace and brotherhood among all the peoples.
Heading towards Rubbiano and Frassinoro you will finally reach Farneta,
whose imposing hydro-electric plant escaped the allied bombings thanks to a
lawn that was grown on its roof to mask the building. You will find all this and
much more during your journey through the places of Freedom, which are
also the places of memory paying homage to many innocent victims,
to those who fought for their ideals, above all with the aim
of preventing this from happening again in the years