The Historical Artifacts

At Capo Rama there are vestiges that attest to the presence of man and the use that has been made of this promontory over the centuries: dry stone walls that trace geometries among the shrubby vegetation, the remains of ancient shelters that demonstrate an ancient frequentation of the site, the more recent signs of a stone quarry, a probable limekiln, the presence of straw mats, and agricultural and pastoral activities.A military fort and a stone and mortar house dating back to the Second Great War hand down the memory of a sad past. The most conspicuous artifact, which has become the symbol of the Reserve, is the watchtower that rises at the end of Cape Rama.

The tower, which inherited its name from the promontory, was one of the first to rise on the Sicilian coast and represents the oldest existing artifact in the Terrasini municipal area. It was Martin the Younger in 1405 who envisioned its construction at this location, which the King of Sicily himself singled out for strategic value. The circular plan, modest size of the structure, and simplicity of form are, in fact, architectural features in use in the 15th century. The tower was built to spot pirate boats and signal their presence through the fani and is included in all official lists of the towers that made up the complex and articulated coastal watch system. The Capo Rama tower was part of the 11 towers controlled by the Senate of the City of Palermo, of which it also represented the westernmost.

Two watchmen or torrari served inside, but at certain times there were three men, who took turns in guarding it. Although partially ruined, the tower retains its charm and historical and architectural value.

The Tower has undergone two consolidation works, the projects of which were carried out by the Palermo Superintendency of Cultural and Environmental Heritage: the first in 2005 in order to secure the artifact (financed by Cepima and Panormedil), the second, begun in 2007 and completed in 2008, made possible the recovery of the vault and the entire structure (financed through the interregional project ” Green Tourism “) .

Fortification World War II

On the coast, near the Cape Rama promontory, there is a coastal observation post (POC) built during World War II. It is a single-weapon circular post with characteristics more of a control and surveillance than a first line of defense, as are the other similar ones along the Tyrrhenian side of the island. This post, due to its type of construction, was apt to cope with possible landings but not to stop them for a long time while waiting for mobile reinforcement units; it is not, in fact, structurally suited to the test of large calibers, nor suitable for sustaining strenuous resistance to the bitter end (A. Albergoni, 2006. Fortified military architecture in the Palermo area 1940-1943).

to top