Italian Alpine troops during the First World War

Plans to mark the First World War Centenary gain momentum in Trentino, Italy

Posted on on 03 June 2013
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Trentino '14-'18. From war to peace is an initiative which is planning a series of events to commemorate the Centenary of the First World War in the autonomous northern Italian province of Trentino.

Trentino was a major area of combat between the opposing Italian and Austro-Hungarian armies during the First World War.

The initiative is coordinating efforts within the province in order to deliver "a wide-ranging and diversified programme of events taking place up to 2014, involving valley communities, schools and institutes, tourist offices, associations and those working in the fields of culture and tourism".

The Trentino '14-'18. From war to peace initiative describes itself as having been "designed to safeguard assets and resources, as well as encouraging development so that they can be appreciated by visitors and tourists".

Several key areas have been identified in the province to mark the Centenary of the First World War:

Restoration of fortifications.

"Path of peace and recovery of trenches": A path which makes its way from Passo del Tonale to the Marmolada, over a distance of around 521 km.

Museums, exhibitions and research: Artefacts and stories of the First World War are held by 19 museums in the province, with research being supported by various institutions for the Centenary.

Teaching and training activities: Local schools and institutes will be working together to provide educational programmes and to promote tourism.

Rete Trentino Grande Guerra: "The First World War Trentino Network" combines territorial associations, museums and institutions in Trentino dealing with the study, protection and enhancement of the heritage of the First World War. 

"Projects at high altitude": Two sites "above the snow line of the perennial snow fields" are being investigated for this project. "Archaeologists of the Libraries, Archives and Archaeological Heritage Department" are working at one site, Punta Linke on the Vioz, at an altitude of more than 3,600 metres. The second site, the Corno di Cavento Gallery, on the Adamello mountain, at an altitude of almost 3,400 metres, has been restored by the Historical and Artistic Heritage Office and the Mountain Valley Department.

A forum was held in April 2013, "Toward the Centenary of the Great War", which was sponsored by "the Autonomous Province of Trento in collaboration with other actors in the Great War Operations Committee".

The forum brought together stakeholders, including corporations, institutions, museums, associations, who are involved with the Centenary and history of Trentino during the First World War.

The meeting allowed plans from around the region to be discussed, such as a project underway being organised by the University of Trento and the Laboratory of History of Rovereto, with the support of Fondazione Bruno Kessler.

The "Project refugees" will explore the theme of people displaced from Trentino at the outbreak of the war. The project will include research into Austrian archives, the Italian psychiatric hospital of Pergine and further research projects on prisoners from Trentino in Russia and on ex-combatants at the end of the conflict.

Discussions also focused on the wider national Centenary commemorations, as well the possibility of coordinating projects with neighbouring provinces in other countries.

Other projects discussed included the restoration of eleven war memorials, as well as the redevelopment of some museums and the possibility of a documentary about the front line being filmed. A particular emphasis during the discussions was educational programmes and the development of Centenary tourism.

To find out more about plans to commemorate the Centenary of the First World War in Trentino, click here.

Images courtesy of Wikipedia

Posted by: Daniel Barry, Centenary News