Historical Institute of Resistance in Tuscany, Florence, Italy

The Historical Institute of Resistance in Tuscany (L’Istituto storico della Resistenza in Toscana) is associated with the National Institute for the History of the Liberation Movement in Italy (INSMLI).

The Institute deals with contemporary history, in particular Italian and European twentieth century, fascism and anti-fascism and resistance in Italy and Tuscany. He has a wealth of archival and library resources, including a rich collection of periodicals, photographs and written and oral testimonies (audio and video).

He has an intensive research and teaching activity in history, for teachers and students of every order and class, collaborating with Tuscan universities and other cultural institutes, above all the historical Institute of Resistance and Contemporary Age present in Tuscany and in general those associated with them to the Insmli network. It also promotes initiatives aimed at consolidating the role of historical knowledge in public debate, in collaboration with associations and other actors in civil society.

They have public and private contributions, mainly on specific projects.

His current location is at Via Giosuè Carducci 5 in Florence, where he is from November 17, 2008. Previously he had a seat in Via Cavour, in the Medici Riccardi Palace, where he still retains the most precious exhibition space and for some time in via dei Pucci, at Palazzo Pucci, where the documentary and photographic archives were kept, with the tape recorder and the video library.

It dates back to a group of Florentine antifascists, composed by Carlo Campolmi, Dino Del Poggetto, Enzo Enriques Agnoletti, Mario Fabiani, Mario Leone, Foscolo Lombardi, Attilio Mariotti, Achille Mazzi, Guido Mazzoni, Giulio Montelatici and Nello Niccoli. founded on October 24, 1953.

The Institute:

collects and orders all the documents and memorabilia that relate to the history of the Resistance in Tuscany and the publications published everywhere, from the beginnings of Fascism until the Italian liberation ended;
collects testimonies of the participants in the fight, promotes inquiries with public and private bodies, ascertains statistical data on the military, political, economic and social life of that period;
promotes cultural events and compiles and possibly publishes a periodical bulletin of studies and monographs.

The Institute retains, among other things, funds from participants in the Liberation War, including the Nello Niccoli Fund, containing correspondence, memorabilia, papers by Aldobrando Medici Tornaquinci, containing documents relating to its political activity, donated to all Institute of Heirs; the archive of Foscolo Lombardi.

Moreover, due to their magnitude and importance, the Tuscan National Liberation Committee Fund (CTLN), the National Liberation Committees Fund (CLN) of the Municipalities of the Province of Florence, the National Liberation Provincial Committee’s Fund (CPLN) Apuania, the Fund for Justice and Freedom, the Gaetano Salvemini Fund, the National Association of Italian Partisans (ANPI) in Florence and the Tuscany Region Fund.

In the last two decades of the twentieth century, the Institute has been providing the Central State Archives with extensive documentation of Tuscan fascism and anti-fascism and numerous microfilms of the documentation produced by the Wehrmacht departments, purchased by the National Archives of Washington, they operated in Tuscany.

In 1962, the Council of the Institute acquired many historical volumes, all of which ranged from World War I to Liberation and Reconstruction. The library then included 1727 volumes and pamphlets. The volumes were all cataloged by counselor Dino Del Poggetto, thanks to which the library had a log of access and a file; the pamphlets were also recorded and cataloged.

In the following years, the integration of the library with purchases on the current and antique market and donations (eg bookstore fund John Francovich, book fund Ferdinando Schiavetti) continued to be integrated, resulting in tens of thousands of titles.

Access to the library and archives was established by a regulation drafted by Foscolo Lombardi and approved by the Council with amendments. Both the library and the archive received numerous donations from members of the Institute, consisting of books, documents, photographic material, newspapers, clandestine prints and posters, reports of partisan formations, documents that were part of the filing commission , documents extracted from the Mario Carità trial, concerning its arrest and subsequent deportation, memoranda

It should be pointed out that: (a) that the papers concerning the punishment commission have never been part of the archives of the Institute, since at the end of the work of that commission the documentation produced by it was delivered to the prefecture of Florence; with these cards were poured, and never again found, the practices of the CTLN Information Office, which therefore, in this respect, is mutilated; b) that the cards defined as relating to the process of Mario Charity are in fact the documents relating to the process of the gang members whom the Charity has named; Charity was never arrested or prosecuted for the simple reason that in the first days after the end of the war he was killed in a clash with a department of Anglo-American security forces who were searching for him.

An assessment of the size and importance of the ISRT archive can be carried out on the basis of the Archiving Guide, which is part of the Resistance Archives Guide published in the “State Archives Review”, new series, at. II (2006), n. 1-2

The Institute received other donations: the last autograph of Piero Calamandrei, entitled Our Republic, by Mrs. Ada Calamandrei; documents relating to C.L.N. of Asciano and of Castelfiorentino; were donated by the heirs of Aldemiro Campodonico documents relating to the criminal trial of Campodonico-Favi for the controversy owned by the New Journal; In addition, the Ministry of Education – Directorate General Academies and Libraries donated some seventy volumes around the history of fascism

Starting from 1965, with the consent of the Ministry of Education and the local Provveditorato to the Studies, the Institute banned a competition to award an annual prize to the best theme among high school pupils. This prize was named after the memory of Adina Tenca, consort of Enzo Enriques Agnoletti, who gave the Institute a sum, whose fruits, earned annually, served to the creation of the prize. The Prize Luigi Boniforti was also set up for the best thesis graduate degree on Resistance that was discussed in one of the Universities of Tuscany The National Research Council awarded the Institute a £ 1 million research grant for the development of a program for the identification and retrieval of documentary sources and archival material on Resistance in the various provinces of Tuscany

Assemblies held in 1964-1965:
On 15 March 1964 Carlo Ludovico Ragghianti commemorated Cesare Fasola. On January 31, 1965 Secretary Foscolo Lombardi, together with Giorgio Spini, Giulio Montelatici, Nello Traquandi, Alfredo Merlini, Giuseppe Pratesi, reminded Attilio Mariotti

The History of Resistance in Tuscany:
At this Institute on September 29, 1963, in the room of Luca Giordano, in the Palazzo Medici Riccardi, the first conference of Storia della Resistenza in Tuscany, I C.L.N. of Tuscany in their relations with the Allied Military Government and with the Government of Liberated Italy. The program of the convention was foreseen the celebration of the twenty years of the constitution of C.L.N. and Enzo Enriques Agnoletti was the rapporteur, with the introduction by Carlo Ludovico Ragghianti

November 4, 1966:
During the flood of 1966 in Florence, the Institute, whose seat was located on the ground floor of Palazzo Medici Riccardi, was invested and covered with water and mud and many papers were flooded, including Calamandrei cards, Foscolo cards Lombardi. Also the collection of clandestine newspapers published during the liberation war, together with newspapers, periodicals of the fascist, pre-fascist and post-liberation period, together with the collection of La Martinella, the first socialist newspaper printed in Tuscany between 1886 and 1923, they had the same fate. The library, specializing in the Fascist period and World War II, including unpublished works featured about 1,000 flooded volumes, about 5,000 volumes. Other damage suffered from the files, the furniture, the publications of the Institute. The work of release from the mud began from November 5, 1966 and saw the attendance of students from the University of Siena, Syracuse University and Smith College, among others, under the direction of the Institute’s staff. Florence and Piombino From an initial estimate, it was found that most of the documents could be saved, while the 1,000 volumes flooded could partially be restored and partially replaced by the purchase of new books. In fact, the flooded documentary material could be saved in the size of 95/98% by virtue of the aid received from the Provincial Administration of Pistoia and the other Institutes of Resistance in Italy, in particular that of Turin.

Tuscany in the fascist regime (1922-1939):
On 23 and 24 May 1969, at the Four Seasons Hall of the Medici Riccardi Palace in Florence, a convention was held on the subject: Tuscany in the fascist regime (1922-1939). The official acts of this convention were printed on the volume published by Leo S. Olschki on the initiative of the Regional Association of the Tuscan Provinces (URPT), the Provincial Administration of Florence and the Historical Institute of Resistance in Tuscany.

Historians and scholars present at the Conference
The Management Committee of the Modern and Contemporary Tuscany History Library entrusted the organizational aspects and features of the Conference to a committee composed of Professors Giorgio Spini, Ernesto Ragionieri, Giorgio Mori and Carlo Francovich. Professors Andrea Binazzi and Ivo Giusti of the Cultural Office of the Province of Florence joined the executive branch. Many reports and interventions by Italian and foreign historians, including Alberto Predieri, Mario Rossi, Giorgio Luti, Emilio Sereni, Stuart Woolf, Reading University in the United Kingdom, Max Gallo, Wilhelm Alff of Marburg, Leopoldo Sandri, General Manager of the Central State Archives, Dr. Bonelli of the Einaudi Foundation in Turin, Antonio Bernieri, Roberto Cantagalli, Lando Bortolotti, Franca Pieroni Bortolotti, Marino Raicich, Antonio Pellicani and Franco Catalano.

Interviews by Gabbuggiani and Niccoli:
The President of the Province of Florence, who at the time was Elio Gabbuggiani, said that the conference was intended to make a contribution to the history of the economic, political and social structures of Fascist Italy, in the historical period between 1922 and 1939.

In Niccoli, in that year, President of the Resistance Institute in Tuscany, in his opening speech, he explained that the conference was intended to study with what methods fascism had been established in the region; what structures he used for economic, social and cultural policy; what forces were associated with the regime to profit, and who, on the contrary, had suffered for political oppression and the economic exploitation of fascist dictatorship. Niccoli said: We have to investigate if there were positive aspects of fascism in our region. The more we will be objective, the more we will be faithful not only to our duty of historians, but also to the democrats and antifascists. He added that if the conference did not come to immediate results, the study setting, the research suggestions formulated in […] two days of work would be important in the name of a rigorous and objective scientific criterion

Other Conferences:
In addition to the above-mentioned conference, the Institute organized, in the autumn of 1963, the Congress on “Resistance and Allies in Tuscany” and, subsequently, “Tuscany in World War II”.

The liberation of Florence:
The documentation useful for writing the book The liberation of Florence was made available by the Historical Institute of Resistance in Tuscany thanks to the collaboration of Giovanni Verni who evaluated and coordinated the material used. For the cover of the volume, the Historical Institute of Resistance in Tuscany granted the historical photo of Florence. In fact, Giovanni Verni did not evaluate and coordinate a good deal, but merely encouraged the research of the author of the book, Giovanni Frullini, pointing to , as it was used to do with all those who addressed him, publications and documents in the Institute concerning the subject of research.