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Torremaggiore, 23 August 2007 - 80th anniversary of the death of Sacco and Vanzetti

category italy / switzerland | history of anarchism | news report author Saturday August 25, 2007 15:27author by FdCA National Secretariat - Federazione dei Comunisti Anarchiciauthor email internazionale at fdca dot it Report this post to the editors

Thursday 23rd August in Torremaggiore, near Foggia, the birthplace of Ferdinando (Nicola) Sacco, was home to a day of events to remember the 80th anniversary of the death by electric chair of sacco and Vanzetti, organized by the Promoting Committee of the association that bears the name of these two Italian anarchists.


Torremaggiore, 23 August 2007
80th anniversary of the death by electric chair of Sacco and Vanzetti

Thursday 23rd August in Torremaggiore, near Foggia, the birthplace of Ferdinando (Nicola) Sacco, was home to a day of events to remember the 80th anniversary of the death by electric chair of sacco and Vanzetti, organized by the Promoting Committee of the association that bears the name of these two Italian anarchists.

At 5.30pm at the entrance to the cemetary in this village near San Severo in the Apulia region, around 50 people took part in a short secular ceremony at the monument erected by the local town council that contains the mixed ashes of Nicola Sacco and bartolomeo Vanzetti. Flowers were laid together with a red and black anarchist flag which was presented by a delegation from the Federazione dei Comunisti Anarchici. Then Mrs Fernanda Sacco, a descendent of Sacco, spoke a few words of thanks to those present, to be followed by a few moments of silence and the playing of a trumpet adagio from Joaquim Rodrigo's Concerto de Aranjuez. Then the architect and sculptor who carried out the work on the monument spoke to explain the symbolism behind the design of the monument, the base of which is a block of local white stone, representing the world crushed by the forces of repression. On the front is carved the profile of Torremaggiore's castle and the house where Sacco was born (his place of departure), while the back shows a silhouette of New York (his place of arrival). The base is surmounted by a monolith in steel-edged black marble representing new York's skyscrapers and bearing the words of Sacco and Vanzetti's official pardon in 1977 by the Governor of Massachussets, Dukakis.

At 6.30pm the constitution of the Associazione Sacco e Vanzetti was signed. This non-profit association has the aim of preserving the memory of Sacco and Vanzetti and fighting against the death penalty and racism. Mrs Fernanda Sacco was proclaimed as Honorary Chairman of the association.

At 7.30pm in Via G.B. Vico, there was an inauguration of a mural dedicated to Sacco and Vanzetti, the work of young local artists, and in the adjoining pub, "Il Saloon", there was an exhibition of art on the two anarchists, with refreshments being served.

At 8.30pm in the town square of Torremaggiore, there was a debate forum on the subject of Sacco and Vanzetti, at which around 150 people participated.

Chaired by Matteo Marolla, there were speeches and talks from most of the invited guests and many others, including the Town Council of Torremaggiore, the Town Council of Villa Falletto (Vanzetti's birthplace), the Foggia Provincial Council, Amnesty International, the Associazione Nessuno Tocchi Caino, the ex-Comitato pro-Silvia Baraldini, the Associazione Carlo Tresca from Sulmona, the SPI-CGIL trade union, and the Federazione dei Comunisti Anarchici. Great attention was paid to the aspect of the use of the death penalty around the world and of the use of "scapegoats" as a regular part of the mechanisms of State repression. The role and significance of anarchism both in the past and the present and of anarchist and Italian emigrants in the USA was remembered in the speech given by the representatives of the Associazione Carlo Tresca and the FdCA, who compared the situation of Italian immigrants in the USA in the past with that of today's immigrants to italy.

A list was also read of the various streets throughout the country named after Sacco and Vanzetti, for example in the towns of Pedaso and Jesi.

There was a good deal of participation by the public, who suggested some other aims which the new association might have, including fighting revisionist attempts to throw doubt on Sacco and Vanzetti's innocence, and fighting the defamation and disinformation that often strikes anarchists and anarchism even today, as it did 80 years ago in the USA.

The forum was then followed by refreshments and a concert by local bands.

The new association faces an important and difficult task. It must seek to avoid rhetoric and the pointless beatification of Sacco and Vanzetti, while ensuring their memory survives and that the values of equality and liberty which inspired Nicola Sacco and Bartolomeo Vanzetti continue to inspire others.


National Secretariat
Federazione dei Comunisti Anarchici

24 August 2007

Related Link: http://www.fdca.it
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