City of Caltanissetta
HISTORY - The origins of the city of Caltanissetta probably date back to the people of the Sicani. However, sources linked to these news are not certain.
After the Roman and Arab rulers, Caltanissetta in 1086 was conquered by the Normans. In the eleventh century, Count Roger I of Sicily conquered the Pietrarossa castle, and the city became a feud of the royal family. In the second half of 1100 the city passed to the Swabians, (it’s due to Frederick II the establishment of Santa Maria degli Angeli as a parish church) . Subsequently, the city fell under the rule of the Aragonese and, in 1407, was granted to the Moncada di Paterno, one of the most powerful Sicilian families.
To promote the export of sulfur, the Moncada family built the Capodarso Bridge on the Salso River. Between 1500 and 1700 many nisseni municipalities were transformed from rural villages in real cities to witness the growing feudalism. (All this until the suppression of the latter in Sicily in 1812). In 1718 Caltanissetta took an active part in the revolt antisavoiarda in Sicily, managing to stave off the army of Savoy from the city. In 1816 (the Bourbon period) Caltanissetta became the provincial capital. In 1848 the city joined in the uprisings in Sicily and became part of the Kingdom of Italy in 1860. After that date, the city began a real economic boom, thanks to the mining activity in the area. However, at the end of the twentieth century the sulfur mines were abandoned because they were crushed by the force of the new international competitors.
THE TERRITORY - Caltanissetta, counts about 60,000 inhabitants, is the capital of the province and includes 22 municipalities. The city covers an area overlooking the entire Valley of the South, and it’s located in a basin formed by the hills of St. Anne, Monte San Giuliano and Poggio Sant'Elia. In addition to the story linked to mineral resources, which constituted a major source of wealth for the entire region (Sicily was the first world producer of sulfur), the nisseno territory boasts a unique natural heritage. The reserves in this area of Sicily are numerous. Among these are mentioned the Monte Capodarso Reserve and Valley of the Southern Regional Nature Reserve Monte Conca, the Natural Reserve of Sughereta Niscemi and many others. This strip of land also gives important glimpses of history visible, for example, from the impressive castles and Petrarossa Musselburgh, followed by those of Mazarin, Falconara, Resuttano. With regard to the typical products of the Province of Caltanissetta, really renowned the productions of oil, artichokes, dairy products, honey, hazelnuts. In the field of gastronomy reigns the food related to game. Also important is the viticulture, with a significant presence among the most productive wine districts of Italy (Vallelunga Pratameno, Riesi, Butera, Serradifalco, San Cataldo, Milena, Sommatino, Delia). The Province of Caltanissetta is inserted in the Routes of the Roads of Wine for excellence.