(215 METRES ABOVE SEA LEVEL – 7 KM FROM CARPANETO)
The district is at the southern borders of the town. Badagnano occupies the second place on the list of the nine stations of the Piacenziano’s Reserve for the outcropping of sandstone sedimentary rock stratums that compose the big Pliocene ridge.
In “Case Speroni” locality in 1966 a fictile dolium was found in graveled terrain at the height of 1.35 metres and with the diameter of 1.38 metres that was used by the Romans with the aim of preserving wine, oil and groceries. The ancient artefact is now safeguarded in Veleia’s Antiquarium.
CASA TORRE MILITARE
The establishment year might be 1383 as it would state a date in Roman numerals engraved on an architrave in the basement.
The Tower House is a classic example, almost uncontaminated, of a minor military construction.
The formidable and austere stone building, composed by a squared tower backed against a massive residential building, doesn’t show any specific ornamental friezes or typical elements of military fortifications.
The tower, lowered in the first years of 1900 of about 10 metres, preserves above two archway small windows a characteristic circular stone on which appears an aristocratic emblem, and on its top the monogram B M and a peculiar Greek-Orthodox cross.
The building a long time ago hosted a military garrison whose purposes were guarantying safety in the area, checking from the top of the tower the passages on the important arterial roads of Val Chero, collecting the taxes imposed on the feudatories and cashing in the tolls for the close Chero ford.
SAINT ESPEDITO’S HERMITAGE
Saint Espedito’s hermitage is made up of S. Giovanni Battista’s dedicated church, the adjacent parsonage and a few rural residences. It is possible to get there only through a narrow street that connects it to Badagnano’s centre.
The devotion for St. Espedito was introduced only in 1922 when with the parish priest Carlo Comotto arrived the statue of the Saint inside of a wooden trunk that had been transported by a horse.
As for the choice of the term HERMITAGE, which is a suitable term to define this solitary and loner place, it certainly must have influenced the fact that in a cavern close to the church had lived for decades, in poverty, in worship and in penitence a hermit, Giuseppe Bonetti, called The Saint.
The small temple, with neogothic façade, it’s internally divided by three aisles defined by round vaults. The patron’s San Giovanni Battista altarpiece, work by G. Ferrari, dates back to the first years of 1900.
The church is equipped of a secondary rear entrance with a staircase very used by the devotees. St. Espedito’s feast is celebrated on the first Sunday of May.
The adjacent graveyard is surrounded by a grove of pines, oaks and locusts and it’s very suggestive.
(261 METRES ABOVE SEA LEVEL – 10 KM FROM CARPANETO)
Olmeto is the last southern extremity of the district, in south-west direction from Badagnano, that includes the inhabitants of Mirandola and Olmeto with the ancient castle.
The fortalice raises still solid and massive not far from the ridge and it’s reachable from the country road after traversing a short lateral unpaved street.
We have news of this castle since 1216, during a battle Cremonese and Parmesan militias destroyed the castle that has been later rebuilt.
The building, transformed in a farm, still maintains his original architecture: two circular towers and above the main door, there are the drawbridge’s joints.
The external recess of the ancient Oratory preserves even now a wooden statue from the XV century, at this point corroded by the time that has passed, depicting Virgin Mary with the Child on her knees that the popular pity has always idolized as a miraculous lightning conductor against the curse of the hail.
(Translated by Laura Fugazzi)