La Rocca di Campiglia,
a witness of three millennia of history
Campiglia is mentioned for the first time in a deed of gift to the Benedictine Abbey Church of Santa Maria di Serena, dating back to 1004. Until the end of the 13th century, a branch of the Della Gherardesca aristocratic family lived in the Rocca and transformed Campiglia from a small village of huts into a castle. The high part of the hill was therefore the most representative area of a town which, in the 12th century, grew to include a village built on the terraces below the Rocca, defended by mighty stone town-walls. Following political conflicts with the Counts of Campiglia, Pisa sent a military garrison that occupied part of the Rocca’s buildings until the early 15th century. When Florence then conquered the town, the Rocca was occupied until the mid 16th century by soldiers sent by Florence to control these lands.
The monumental complex of the Rocca represents an important historical connection between the borough of Campiglia and the Archaeological Mines Park of San Silvestro, in which there is the medieval Rocca, built for the use of the miners and smelters that worked for the Della Gherardesca family.
The Rocca di Campiglia bears witness to three thousand years of history: from the first settlement in the 8th-9th century of a village of pig farmers’ huts, the arrival of the powerful Della Gherardesca counts from Pisa through to current times. The monumental complex, which was inaugurated on 7 June 2008 after meticulous and respectful renovation, represents an important historical connection between the town of Campiglia and the Archaeological Mines Park of San Silvestro, in which there is the medieval Rocca, built for the use of the miners and smelters that worked for the Della Gherardesca family.
The history of the castle begins much earlier than indicated in the document of 1004, discovered in the Della Gherardesca counts’ archives in which Campiglia is mentioned for the first time in a deed of gift to the Benedictine Abbey Church of Santa Maria di Serena. The archaeological digs in the late 1990s, under the scientific direction of Prof. Riccardo Francovich and coordinated by Prof. Giovanna Bianchi, professor of Medieval Archaeology at the University of Siena, brought to light many interesting finds that are now on display in the museum in the Rocca’s old keep.