THE GARDETTA ROADS
THROUGH THE MUNICIPALITIES OF ACCEGLIO, MARMORA, CANOSIO, CASTELMAGNO, DEMONTE, SAMBUCO, AND PIETRAPORZIO RUNS A NETWORK OF PAVED AND UNPAVED ROADS THAT EVEN TODAY CONNECTS THE VALLEYS OF MAIRA, GRANA, AND STURA.
It is an extraordinary historic and economic patrimony for the local communities as well as for the public in general. On the one hand, it still allows for all inhabitants of the valley and for those who work in the mountains to reach hamlets and alpine pastures as well as the neighbouring valleys. On the other hand, it shows the tourism and sports potential with an itinerary that winds amidst high passes, pilgrimage churches, historic civic architecture and typical and protected natural landscapes, right in the heart of the valleys of Occitan language and culture.
THE GARDETTA ROADS
THE COLLECTIVE MEMORY (1890-1960)
Images of men and women, of old people and children, single or group portraits. People were immortalised while practising one of the many crafts that mountain life has always required of its inhabitants, or during moments of celebration and joy, when events like weddings, communions, or christenings became important occasions for individuals and their respective families to share their feelings with a larger group of people.
Also images of places that show views that are familiar to people who had lived or still live in those valleys; and images of buildings, streets, and squares that show rare cars – if they occur – as nothing more than dark silhouettes parked in open and apparently empty spaces.
THE ALPINE WALL
THE MILITARY ROADS OF THE VALLEYS MAIRA, GRANA, AND STURA
Part of the famous «Alpine Wall», the military roads of the valleys Maira, Grana, and Stura, were largely built in the 1930s, often integrating or repairing traces of dirt roads and mule tracks already existing in Piedmont and having been destroyed by the French in the 19th century. After the cession of Nice and Savoy to France, an entire defensive system called «belt of forts» was built in about ten years to strengthen the new frontier, constructing emplacements and dozens of kilometres of roads and trails.