Sassoferrato is an enchanting Marche village nestled in the Apennines with a territory that includes a wide valley with water courses that cross the monumental Frasassi Caves.
The highest peaks reach 1700 meters with Monte Catria and life in this area has been characterized by the relationship with nature and by one of the largest sulfur mines in Europe.
The known history of Sassoferrato began with local populations being defeated in 295 BC. by the Romans during the 3rd Samnite War in Sentinum, in the current territory of Sassoferrato.
The city became part of Regio VI Umbria and enjoyed a certain prosperity until the arrival of the Barbarians. After the fall of the Roman Empire, initial stability was given by the Lombards who ruled the area of the Duchy of Spoleto.
Finally, around 1000 on one of the hills the Castrum Saxum Ferratum was formed to protect the population from continuous enemy incursions. It was exactly 1150 when Count Atto gave the castle its name and he became the first feudal lord of Sassoferrato.His family ruled the town within the Papal State despite several attempts to conquer by the Malatesta family of Rimini, Braccio da Montone and Francesco Sforza.
Around 1365 Cardinal Albornoz had part of the castle rearranged with the money of the Atti family and the Albornoz fortress can still be visited today and is one of the symbols of the town.
In 1460 Sassoferrato became a free municipality and the town's statute was in force until 1827. Around 1500, for a period it was ruled by Cesare Borgia, the Duke Valentino son of Pope Alexander VI Borgia.
Not much is known about the history of the following centuries but in the seventeenth century Giovan Battista Salvi was born in Sassoferrato, one of the greatest Italian painters of the time whose works can be found all over the world.
One of the episodes to report was the arrival of the Roman Republic in 1798 which subverted the power of the Papal State. But the Sassoferratesi organized a counter-revolution and appointed 3 priors. Napoleon then occupied the city and gave it to the Austrians who then returned it to the Papal State. Years followed in which many infrastructures were built such as roads and bridges but this did not stop the Garibaldian spirit and the accession to the Kingdom of Italy.
During the first years of the reign, many public works were started such as the construction of schools, a theatre, the railway and a civil hospital. Especially in this period, important sulfur deposits were discovered and what became the largest mines in Europe were opened. These were active until 1950-60 and, after their closure, many people went to work in the steel industry in Michigan where they founded a community with the emblematic name: Iron Mountain.
Today Sassoferrato is an enchanting mountain village animated by children, who come to study painting and art, and by all nature lovers. Among the food and wine excellences are the presence of, and the experiences of searching for truffles, which are included in the list of the Intangible Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO.