Ian McCathy of Casa della Memoria, the association dedicated to preservation of the history of P.G. 59, is spearheading a crowdfunding initative for community purchase of a historic building, Casa Monti, in Servigliano:
According to gofundme.com, “the big house is used by various community groups and currently to temporarily house young people in difficulty and migrants, and which also houses the Servigliano English Library. There is no set time frame for this project but we hope to achieve the goal within 1 year from August 2020. The aim is to preserve the social use of the property where other community projects can be developed.”
“The house was the original base of Casa della Memoria before we had the museum in the old station,” Ian wrote to me, “but it’s now used by other associations.”
For families of Allied POWs who were sheltered by courageous local Italians after the P.G. 59 breakout, this an excellent opportunity to show gratitude. I encourage you to support this worthy endeavor, and I will look forward to seeing many British and American names on the donor list in months to come!
After years of collecting documentary material and recording stories related to the history of Camp 59, an educational center is in sight for members of the Associazione Casa della Memoria (the House of Remembrance) of Servigliano.
The old train station—through which Allied prisoners were brought to camp—will be renovated. The building has been granted to the association for its educational mission.
The old Servigliano train station viewed from the north.
The front of the station faces the northwestern wall of Camp 59. At one time tracks paralleled that wall of the camp.
The Associazione Casa della Memoria (House of Remembrance Association) of Servigliano, Italy, is now on Facebook.
While the focus of the “Survivors of Camp 59” site is on World War II, the camp has a longer history.
According to the Casa della Memoria website, the association’s broader remembrance of the past is defined in this way:
“These events left their mark on the history not just of the small community of Servigliano, but also of the many villages that overlook the Tenna Valley.
“Recovering the memory of all these events involving the Prison Camp is a duty we have to the people who lived through those difficult times, but also to the new generations. The events can be divided into three moments, in relation to the three great dramas of the 20th century:
the First World War;
the Second World War;
the Cold War.
“Each of these moments can be seen as a ‘crisis of values’ in our society, the enslavement of human intelligence and of resources to ideologies that claimed to be absolute, leading to an apocalyptic climax of destruction and death:
the use of the Camp during the First World War was due to nationalism;
the use of the Camp during the Second World War was due to Nazi-Fascism;
the use of the Camp during the Cold War was due to totalitarian socialism.
“Among the various Prison Camps scattered around Italy, the one in Servigliano permits a possibly unique reconstruction of twentieth-century history and its twisted ideologies.”