Via delle Rose, Loc. Castel dell'Aquila, Montecastrilli, (Terni)
Permanent Exhibition of Peasant Instruments and Tools of Rural Civilization Opened for the first time in 1985 as a temporary exhibition, the Mostra Permanente di Arnesi e Strumenti della Civiltà Contadina, Museum of Castel dell’Aquila has been hosted in some rooms in the High School of the village since 1988. The collection is the result of the work of the members of the Circolo Culturale “Don Vincenzo Luchetti”, who collected the tools from the families of the place. There are 3500 well-documented items in the museum today. The large room hosting the museum is subdivided in the typical spaces of a sharecropping farmhouse: the kitchen-living room, with its fireplace and the sideboard; the bedroom, with the bed warmer and the items for children, such as the baby walker, “camminarello”, the table for changing diapers, “fasciatoio” and the rudimental playpen or “guardiolo”. There is also the room of the traditional handmade works of women, where the tools women used for embroidery, for spinning hemp and wool fibers are displayed. The women were often assisted by children, who wound up the hank and skeins of yarns with the “naspo”. The room dedicated to the traditional artisanal work that men used to do includes the “gigliara” used to sift out the seeds, it was hung on the ceiling and twirled around. The room of the shoemaker, or “ciabattino”, displays the tools and the instruments used to work in the fields. The thematic axis around which the display is arranged is that of the “penny pinching” culture of recycling. The meager rural economy, in fact, imposed the optimization of resources and consequently the reuse of every object possible, often reconverted for purposes different from the original: from the medicine bottles, useful if recycled as small candle holders or lamps; to the broken plates, restored with a hand made tool called the “appuntapiatti”, a rudimental sort of drill allowing the making of small holes to crimp and re-put the pieces together; to the caldron reused as a funnel; and the barbecue grill, which had a compartment to contain the meat fat, to be reused in the kitchen as shortening and in the laundry for soap making.