Cella Monte: the history of this little hamland the Ecomuseo of the Cantoni Stone

Cella Monte is the small village in the heart of Monferrato in which we grew up.

A tiny town where the main activities focus around agriculture and viticulture. It is a precious place where our headquarter is located.

The main streets are only two but you can find anything you might need walking along them: a grocery shop, a bank, a post office, a tobacconist, one coffee bar, a soccer field, a tennis field, a church, a small theatre, dozens of infernot and wine cellars, bed & breakfast and lodging houses, agricultural activities and since 2003 the Ecomuseo of the Cantoni Stone all surrounded by a green and healthy nature.

The value of this splendid hamlet has been brought to light during the last 10 years thanks to the hard work of the public services as well as the local organizations and all the inhabitants who everyday give their contribute to embellish their houses and give a warm welcome to tourists.

Every corner of this village treasures a sweet memory for us but at the same time it inspires us for our ongoing project, reminding us the importance of tradition, patience and heritage.

A little bit of history

The first documents stating “Cella Monte” as the name of our village go back to the XII century, both in the plural form “Cellae” (1116) and in the singular one, “cella” (1143). It seems that the name comes from cellae vinarie, formerly carved into the stone and above which house have been built.

In 1311 the first organizations were born, formed by 1 or 2 lineage, which grew during the years because of female legacies and new borns.

In 1708 it became part of the Casale municipality and so within the land controlled by the french. After the Napoleonic period it went back to be part of the Alessandria province.

In 1863 the major Luigi Vallino, to whom the name of the only square is dedicated, requested the extension of the word Monte next to Cella. The reason? Because our village was, and for us it is still, one of the most beautiful hills of Monferrato.

The Ecomuseo of the Cantoni Stone

The Ecomuseo of the Cantoni Stone that has been working for 15 years now to guarantee the development of a united culture coming from all the different realities present in Monferrato. It promotes many initiatives to preserve this territory, as an historic testimony, a community example with the aim to revitalize the local activities as well as buildings and constructions.

The cantoni stone is a precious material. Its origins are mostly calcareous and it is usually distinguished into 2 types. The less recent one, rich in fossils and coming from not too deep seas, is not very much workable and it is mainly used within the cement industry. All the irregular blocks extracted were used as constructions stone and still visible on many walls and houses on the territory.

The most recent parts instead were extracted in squared blocks and used mostry into the construction sector.

It is indeed from this stone that the typical infernot were carved. An appendix to the wine cellar, without light and natural air usually located underneath the houses or the courts which you can find in the most part of the houses within our territory. Places strongly connected to the wine culture which we have to preserve and live with respect.

If you haven’t visited our infernot yet we are waiting for you for an underground walk inside our headquarter!

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