13th May it is celebrated, throughout the national territory, the Journey of Common Heritage by Italia Nostra ONLUS organization. It is a Journey to sensitize citizens on archaeological heritage at risk in Italy. Each regional committee of Italia Nostra identifies an archaeological risk in your region. Provincial commitee of Campobasso has chosen to move citizens in cleaning historic ice houses in mountain and a historic haystack, in a pastoral activity district until the middle of the twentieth century. Activity was made in collaboration with the Superintendence Archaeology, Fine Arts and Landscape in Molise of the Ministry of Heritage, Activities and Tourism.

With the supervision of the archaeologist Francesca Di Palma, of the Municipality of Civitanova del Sannio, a group of citizens has put in sight two ice houses freeing them from weeds.

These two were part of a row of fifteen ice houses (“neviere”), placed on a point in the mountain where the snow settles more abundantly in winter. Each ice house was deep and wide enough to get: wide to have maximum harvesting capacity but not too much so as not to melt snow; not too deep to be able to get inside and collect the snow; for most of the depth below rock level to keep the snow frozen.

It is known that until the middle of the twentieth century the snow was collected to be used, among other things, by ice cream makers in the summer village parties.
During the cleaning works, the citizens were able to listen to the history and the construction techniques of the ice houses, and at the same time becoming protagonists as the first person for their protection and enhancement.

After cleaning the ice house in the mountain we went downhill to clean a dry stone structure with a tholos roof (“pagliare”), used up to decades ago to store straw.

But it is not known when it was built. Again, citizens cleaning the structure, literally masked by weeds, were able to discover the sight of its original structure and learn its use by the peasant community.

The day ended with the sharing of typical dishes of the region, also linked to the farming world of the past, such as the ice houses and the haystack.

CAMPOBASSO, March 7, 2018

A travel in the Neolithic in the Archaeological Museum of Venafro, Tratturi, June 9th 2017

The traces affected by the tratturi to the transhumance in historical times, were probably the same ones that the first shepherds have traveled in the Neolithic age. So also an activity with the school public that foresees the knowledge of the Neolithic can help to make children understand the possible antiquity of these tracks, today candidate at the UNESCO World Heritage.
Within the school / work alternation project, promoted by the Italian Ministry of Education and University Research (M.I.U.R.), the Regional Direction of the State Museum of Molise he hosted a series of activities with professors and students. The aim was to make the students work on the archaeological heritage in the normal activities of museums. In the Archaeological Museum of Venafro, there was the need to install an exhibition on the Neolithic evidences discovered in 2014 during the excavation of a pipeline. Seven students from the third year of high school were involved.

Near Venafro in 2014 evidences of a Neolithic village have been found, during the works coordened by Dr. Diletta Colombo of the Superintendence Archaeology, Fine Arts and Landscape of Molise. Along with this, a child skeleton was found, that is the oldest inhabitant of Venafro until now known. Everything is dated about 8,000 years ago, thanks to the ceramic style and the optical luminescence analysis of the soil.

Students, with the support of their professor of humanities and of the archaeologist of the Museum, took knowledge of archaeological materials and themes related to the following areas: finding context, Neolithic diet, dating methods in archeology and what was the Neolithic.

After this brief training, the students were left independent in managing the production of the exhibition’s communication supports: they thought and realized graphics, contents and language of the posters that explain the Neolithic world, how the human diet changed from the Paleolithic and how it differs from the current one, how and where the remains of the Neolithic Venafro were found and how the archaeologists are date the context. A student also wrote a story on the child skeleton and a poster was dedicated to it.
On the last day of school, on June 9th 2017, the exhibition was inaugurated and the seven students served as guides to the exhibition, while other students explained to their colleagues the whole museum.

160 students they had the chance to get to know the local Neolithic through an exhibition with archaeological artefacts, posters conceived and written by their peers and guided by their classmates also in the discovery of the archaeological museum.

Tales of the Abbey under stars, San Vincenzo al Volturno, August – September, 2017

This event was planned to link the monastic life with the knowledge, in an interactive event, like those that had occurred in the Benedictine communities in the Middle Age. Ancient Abbey of San Vincenzo al Volturno is, today, a large archaeological area which allows to visit and understand a considerable part of the ancient structures and the night of 10th august is commonly a good moment to look and discover constellations, planets, stars and shooting stars.

By combining these two favorable factors, together with the charm of the archaeological area illuminated at night, public was involved in a reasoned guided tour:

The different abbey environments, like refectory, churches, Chapter room or works area, have been shown and commented by prof. Federico Marazzi and Dr. Simona Carracillo, following the “Rule of St. Benedict”, which ruled the daily life of the monks. In this way, public could look, understand and live the planning of the abbey structures, the timing of daily life of monks, the link between abbey architecture and the maxim “ora et labora”.

After the “reasoned” visit of the abbey where, within the scope of its activities in Middle Age, knowledge was rescued and valorized, in the large open space of ruined big church of San Vincenzo Maggiore, inside at the medieval abbey area, public could approach astrophysics science with prof. Dario Mancini: observing the constellations, the stars and the planets in the night sky with a portable telescope, and talking and asking questions, people of all ages could be able to dive for some hours, informally, in a world of astrophysics. In this way, for one night, the ruined abbey of San Vincenzo is returned to one of its ancient functions: to be a place of knowledge.

Workshop disclosure, San Vincenzo al Volturno, August 2017