FOREWORD

           This catalogue regards the mineral gold, the ores that generally accompany it and the mining activities that have interested them, with particular respect to Italy.  The materials have been collected during my 30 years activity of exploration and historical search; the "trespasses", sometimes only apparent, sometimes substantial, are due to the different interests on mining, to the necessity to know better history and nature of some localities, especially of those that hosting the Museum, and, in some case, to the casualness of publications and documents acquisition.  

Since the purpose was that to have to the hand how much could serve one for thematic and topographical searches, besides the possible original, they have been collected also photocopies of publications and documents, in libraries and archives not only Italian: to notice that today it is impossible to have copies of many originals, others cannot be found, for which the possessed photocopies go to replace them and they constitute some rarities that go to enrich the more than few rare if not sole originals that I had the fortune to purchase.  For the same purpose I preferred to extract how much it interested from books and revues, sometimes also materially: for this reason the mostly used modern periodical revues have not been preserved, if not in the case of monographic numbers.  The drawn out publication sometimes reduces him to a page or less, but it represents the only interesting and available part for the treated argument. 

Good part of the material obviously concerns Piedmont and Aosta Valley, our classical "auriferous" regions, and, for recent times, southern Tuscany and Sardinia, regions that were discovered auriferous following my exploration activity and my indications.  And since such activity concerned in particular way the Liguria, it achieves the rich documentation for this region.  All the other Italian regions have not been neglected, obviously for which I have expressly looked for the whole news on the gold presence, also the most meaningless or abstruse, not disdaining to collect all the material interesting ores or mining-history which comes upon me during the searches. 

The collected material regarding foreign ores, over those I directly explored, obviously served for close examinations and for comparisons: useful they have been particularly the studies on the exploitation of gold placers in various parts of the world, to compare them with the initial state of the gold terraces that anciently were to the feet of the Alps and to understand its exploitation methods.  Notable it is, as one can seen, the harvest of clippings of newspapers, primarily of the period 1980-2000, that concern the gold activities in every part of the world that follow the price climb up, with the consequent digging poverties, the market illusions and the stock-exchange speculations: the material has served in part for a Thesis of Degree (VIGLIANI BINELLO) but it deals with a matter that must be better analyzed in future times.  

Always regarding the foreign ores, and particularly to the gold rushes, during the historical and bibliographical searches emerged an underestimated involvement of Italian diggers and writers, starting from Christopher Columbus, which can be defined the first gold digger of the New World:  therefore it is logical the specific books collection about him and texts of Italian authors that treat of gold mines in various parts of the world.  Speaking of these authors it is necessary to specify that some of them properly are not Italian, but almost: Nesbitt was of Italian mother and lived a lot in Italy; Strozzi came form the Italian Switzerland (Canton Ticino); Rolle is American, probably of Italian origin, and however his book concerns the Italian immigration in the United States; Dianda is German but of Italian origin, as from him declared, in Italian language, in a television interview.   

The abundance of archaeology publications is not casual.  To them must applies looking for connections between ancient presences and local ore resources, that is an entirely neglected matter in Italy, because of the wrong conviction that Italy is poor if not entirely deprived of ores.  The resources, especially the metallic ones, have spread instead in many parts of our Country, and if today they don't offer any economic perspective, it has not always been so, you are enough to think that in the second half the eight hundred Italy was among the most greater European producers of gold, of copper, of iron, of manganese, of mercury and of pyrite.  For the ancient times it needs to make the accounts with the discreet alluvial gold deposits, especially the gold terraces that were completely exploited by the ancient populations and by the Romans, and with an infinity of metalliferous shows that today can appear meaningless but that in the antiquity, and also in a less remote past, have been able to constitute discreet sources of silver, copper, iron and other metals with which to manufacture in place objects of which, almost always, the "Archaeology" looks for distant productions instead. 

            The most ancient publications are been retrieved on the antiquarian market; a lot of those more recent originate from exchanges, from donations and from the personal printing.  The older original archive materials originates from purchases and from exchanges; those regarding more recent activity, of which I have not personally dealt, have been given in part by René Bruck, William Rebora, Maurice Stupini and, above all, Franco Meliconi of Grosseto, that succeeded in recovering part of the file of the RIMIN to Follonica, after the dissolution of that State Mining Company followed to the scandal "Tangentopoli" and to the investigation "Clean Hands" that interested it: part of that file, constituted also thanks to not orthodox systems of retrieval in the various Mining Districts, is ended in Switzerland, in base to I don't know what relationships among some company managing and some Italian-Swiss professorials. 

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            The publications are brought following a scheme of bibliographical quotation, so that to allow its retrieval, when possible, also in other library.  The distinction among the books and the brochures inserted in the miscellanies is not based so much on the number of pages, more or less of 50, how much on the physical consistence and, above all, the content.  I have also inserted in the miscellanies the Illustrative Notes of the Geologic Maps, both because they are not so much numerous to deserve a cataloguing apart, both because generally they are very stingy on mining news.  

Apart those cumulative, that are reported with the title, the publications are pointed out beginning from the last name of the author, if not anonymous, followed by the name, for wide or with the only initial, as it appears on the covers.  In case of more authors, thin to a maximum of three everybody is brought; if in greater number I have preferred to point out only the first one followed by “et A.” (et alii), since more than few publications, also of few pages, they bring numerous signatures.  The titles of the publications are brought in cursive: in the case of part of a volume, the titles of the chapters are brought followed by the title of the volume in commas.  In the books they follow the publisher, the city and the year of publication, when they are present, otherwise the omission is underlined (s.A., s.l, s.d.) even inserting among parenthesis those presumed or known from other source.  It follows the number of pages, pointing out possible absences (pp.n.n. or s.n.p.), and the indication of possible tables, figures or maps out text, suitable with headway (tavv., figg., c. f.t.).    

The “classic” extracts from magazines and from cumulative publications, with cover and, sometimes, proper numeration of pages, are expressly suitable, while are not suitable as such the articles materially draws, the photocopies and the modern original extracts from magazines, also them materially treat to the source without any additional operation if not the sting.  The title of the Magazine, as that of cumulative publications and actions of Conferences, are brought among quotation marks, generally in shortened form but easily resolvable: since the jobs belong to different disciplines, I preferred not to use the proper abbreviations, hardly resolvable for the not introduced.  The magazine called Rivista Mineralogica Italiana, for instance, that itself initial RMI, is suitable as Riv. Min. It.  I have maintained the most known initials, instead SIM and SIMP, for the most known and diffused Rendiconti della Società Italiana di Mineralogia, then became Società Italiana di Mineralogia e Petrologia.  The abbreviation Boll. Ass. Min. Sub. it obviously points out the Bulletin of the Mining Subalpine Association, edit near the Polytechnic in Turin, but must be to point out that in the last years the initial GEAM was joint, to indicate Environmental Geology, that has ended to replace completely the old title following the mining disciplines collapse of interest. 

            The series of the revues is expressly suitable (s.) only when it appears on the extract or in article head.  They follow the year end/or the volume, that not always coincide, in Roman numbers or Arabs, as brought in the specimen, the year of the publication, that often doesn't coincide with that of press, due the general chronic delay in the exits, the possible issue and the number of the pages.  It is pointed out, among parenthesis, if it is a photocopy.  

The documents, divided as the publications for theme and for geographical areas, are summarily described, and it is pointed out if they are original or photocopies.  A more accurate description would involve long times and the publication of a voluminous specific catalogue is not excluded in expectancy.  

 

                                                                                                                                                         Joseph Pipino

SUMMARY CATALOGUE