Acquafredda di Badia Prataglia

13/04/1944

Rounding-up operation for control of territory

During the second week of April 1944 the road over the Mandrioli Pass (SS71) was subjected sporadically to the actions of partisan squads, not locals but linked to the Romagna Resistance. The testimony of some Casentino partisans tells of the existence of a shelter used as a small field hospital near the Pass, this too linked to Romagna formations. Fascist documentation records an attack on a German car near the Pass on April 10th, with no casualties on either side. On April 12th, some partisans (most likely linked to the Grande Brigata Romagnola retreating after the battle of Biserno) attacked a car transiting State Road 71 near the cemetery: an officer and a sergeant lost their lives, while another NCO was wounded but survived. On the morning of April 13th, a unit of the 1st Armoured Parachute Division Hermann Göring, linked to the troops operating at the same time in Partina and reinforced by fascist soldiers, broke off and set out for Badia Prataglia along the Mandrioli Pass road. In Acquafredda, the unit spotted Guido Ciampelli, who happened to be leaving Badia Prataglia on his way to buy a cot for his daughter who was about to be born. Perhaps mistaking him for a partisan, they immediately executed him. A few hundred metres from the village, the unit captured three young labourers from the Todt Organisation who were leaving Badia to go to work on the construction in nearby Pian del Ponte. They were taken in a truck to the bridge over the river at Isola and shot in front of a wall. In the meantime other armoured paratroopers set fire to the Hotel Belvedere and rounded up about fifty men, intending to shoot them by the wall of the village primary school. What seemed an inevitable outcome was averted by the arrival of Mario Battisti, an officer of the Milizia Nazionale Forestale (National Forestry Militia) and Commander of the Badia Prataglia station since 1936. Although urged by his wife and children not to take risks, he came out of the barracks and, addressing the Göring officers in perfect German, after an hour of negotiations obtained the release of all the hostages. The episode was undoubtedly linked to the operation launched against Monte Falterona together with Vallucciole, Partina, Moscaio and Lonnano.

The Voices

Guido Mulinacci

Crediti: Località Badia Prataglia. Riprese e intervista di Pier Angelo Bonazzoli realizzate il 01/04/2018.

Pasquale Donati nicknamed “Il moro” (The dark-haired one)

Crediti: Località Badia Prataglia. Riprese e intervista di Pier Angelo Bonazzoli realizzate il 21/04/2018.

The Signs

Monument to the Fallen of Badia Prataglia

Informations

Place of placement: Lato strada

Date of placement:

Description

The monument consists of two large marble slabs resting against a wall, on the left of which are inscribed the names of those who died in the First World War; on the right are the names of those killed during the Second World War and nazi-fascist reprisals against civilians. Between the slabs is a large niche containing a large bronze votive lamp. Above the two slabs is an entablature with the inscription “Badia Prataglia to its Fallen”.

Personal observations

News and contextualisation

Anche questa strage non è conseguenza delle due azioni di guerriglia del 10 e 11 Aprile cioè due attentati partigiani ad auto in transito lungo la statale 71 dei Mandrioli che aveva provocato la morte di due o tre soldati tedeschi ma si inquadrano nella logica di una vasta operazione di "Bonifica" della fascia Appenninica compresa tra il passo del muraglione (statale 67) e quello dei Mandrioli (statale 71), iniziato il 7 Aprile e che aveva il duplice obiettivo di stringere in una sacca senza uscita le bande partigiane Romagnole e Toscane e per rendere sicure e transitabili le vie di collegamento nord-sud della decima armata tedesca della Wehrmacht. (Alessandro Brezzi, Poppi 1944. Storia e storia di un paese nella "Linea Gotica" 2015 pagina 67, ed associazione Nazionale combattenti e reduci-sezione di poppi, tipografia la Zecca , Levane Arezzo). Le compagnie del Panzer Regiment Hermann Göring affiancati dai reparti italiani della GNR uccidono un uomo all'altezza della località Acquafredda pochi chilometri prima dell'abitato di Badia Prataglia, li allinearono ad un edificio che si trova sul ponte del torrente Fiume d'isola. Altri cinquanta uomini vengono allineati contro il muro della scuola elementare. Si dà inizio alla strage uccidendo a colpi di maschinenpistole i tre giovani prelevati all'ingresso del paese(Gino Grilli, Otello Zani, Sincero Tacconi). A questo punto appare sulla scena "Il Militare Scelto" Mario Battisti comandante della stazione forestale di Badia Prataglia; l'appuntato rivolgendosi in perfetto tedesco ma il giovane ufficiale tedesco convincendolo circa l'innocenza dei Badiani e del fatto che fra loro non si nascondevano partigiani, concluse la trattativa con la liberazione degli ostaggi.

Gallery:

Author: Istituto Comprensivo Dovizi Bibbiena

Memorial stone to Guido Ciampelli

Informations

Place of placement: Lato strada

Date of placement:

Description

The memorial stone is dedicated to Guido Ciampelli, a civilian killed here by the Germans of the "H. Göring" Division. Göring" Division on April 13th 1944 during the rounding-up operations on Mount Falterona against partisans. It is a rectangular stone block with a square marble plaque fixed to the front. The plaque is inscribed with the name of the dead man and the date of death. In the centre of the upper part of the plaque is engraved a small cross. Both the lettering and the religious symbol are lined with black paint. Above the block there is an iron cross. The memorial stone is located at the side of the road, between two small cypresses.

Personal observations

News and contextualisation

Gallery:

Author: Alessandro Bargellini