Gothic recalls Frederick Hartt and the Monuments Men

  • 15 July 2023
1024 682 Gothic Tuscany aps

the editorial team

On 15 July 2023, a ceremony took place in Florence with Maria Federica Giuliani - Councilor, among other things, for Relations with religious confessions, and for the Culture of Memory and Legality of the Municipality of Florence. The occasion is the arrival of the Jeep relay organized to celebrate the 80th anniversary of the Allied landing in Sicily, created with the contribution of Gotica Toscana aps and the HMV (History Military Vehicles) Italia association, which is based in Ponzalla, near the Mugot – Gothic Museum of Scarperia.

The Monuments Men and the New Zealand soldiers who fought to save the Florentine works of art from destruction and theft were thus honoured. In this regard, there was a tribute to Lieutenant Frederick Hartt in the cemetery of San Miniato al Monte. A wreath was placed on his tomb, in the presence of the Councilor for the culture of memory Maria Federica Giuliani and Filippo Spadi, president of the HMV Italia association, and the Consul General of the United States of America in Florence, Ragini Gupta.

“Frederick Hartt Florence was responsible for saving many of our works of art at the end of the war – recalled councilor Giuliani – he was a great scholar and art historian of the Italian Renaissance, whose profound love he had for Italian art, after enlisting in the United States Army in 1942, encouraged him to join the Monuments Men, the military corps that played a fundamental role in the safeguarding and recovery of some of the most precious works of art in the world." “For this, Florence will always be grateful to him – concluded councilor Giuliani – and has awarded him honorary citizenship and welcomed him, as per his wish, at the Porte Sante cemetery in San Miniato a Monte”.

The relay of Willys jeeps continued along the Gothic Line on the Apennines, visiting the bunkers on the Giogo pass. In the Po Valley the vehicles will stop in Felonica (Mantua), on the trail of the German retreat from the Po. The journey concludes with stops in Salò and Desenzano, and the arrival in Milan, at the Commonwealth cemetery of Trenno.

Essential stops are the museums of the 'Italy War Route' cultural circuit, historical places symbolizing the Italian countryside. The mission is combined with a fundraiser to be allocated to the Tommasino Bacciotti charity, a non-profit organization that supports research in pediatric oncology and helps the families of young patients. 100 T-shirts commemorating the raid have been created, which will be sold at the symbolic price of 20 euros. The entire proceeds will be donated to the Bacciotti association.

Some photos of the event

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