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Valley of the mills of  Gragnano
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A complex system made of channels, aqueducts and tanks built two centuries  before the birth of Leonardo Da Vinci.

.......multiple waterfalls provided power to a series of mills of equal productivity!

The principle of consecutive mills was valid because the water coming out of a mill reached the next mill through a sloping channel and so on for all the others located further downstream. The energy provided by the water was consistent from water mill to water mill.

… these pages are an opportunity to pay due tribute to those who nearly a thousand years ago built an industrial district using water and gravity to drive the mills. We are not talking about a single watermill used by the local community, but about an INDUSTRIAL ECOLOGY system where large amounts of wheat were ground. It’s a sign that human beings, even in the darkest centuries, have never stopped using their genius in works that could improve their living conditions. This site has been hidden and abandoned for too long, but it must now be returned to the world as it bears historical and cultural witness of a territory with an industrial history of its own that has to be recovered.

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listen here........
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The mills were amazing structures which represented an innovation during the dark period of the Middle
Ages compared to the primitive milling techniques.
A recognition to Mankind for using its ingenuity and  improving its living conditions.

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The mill was the structure built around a hydraulic machine, constructed with the readily available material. The shape and size of the mills were designed  for practical applications with very little aesthetic in mind.

The introduction of water mill technologies  had huge impact on people during the middle age.the new milling tecniques  drove social development  and wealth. Grain crops have always been the foundation of  agriculture and milling processes have developed in parallel to transform harvests into food.Large stones grinding grains were the most popular technique  for producing flour. Originally  activated by man power, it became soon obvious that for improving productivity more energy was required  to rotate heavy stones. Animal power was soon introduced to replace man power. Animal had limitation too so with the understanding of hydraulic laws water became soon the new source of energy to operate milling machines . Clean, free energy contributed to  improve the production of flour and made it more affordable to lower social classes.       

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4-La Mena
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how to organize a tour in the valle dei mulini

.. Pictures from the Valley
slope of the territory
“… I can’t explain what I’m seeing”. Wolfgang Goethe couldn’t find
words to explain the wonder of the places he visited in Italy
To better understand the functioning of the Valley of Mills water system, we must keep in mind that everything was possible thanks to a ......

The natural slope of the hills was  the key factor  which drove the water system of the Valle dei Mulini .

Gravity consented the water to flow!

... pubblications
Valle dei mulini has always been the center of the attention of artists who got inspired to create several
masterpieces other than depliants showing amazing places which can be seen by clicking
Film footage of the Valley showing the beauties of the place, a way to revisit an enchanting place

The Valley of the Mills in Gragnano is part of the ancient path which ran from Castellammare to Amalfi. Walking along the Vernotico river, travellers could water their pack animals before starting the steep climb all the way to their destination.

The presence of many water sources on an optimal slope would allow for the building of a set of mills with a horizontal water wheel on a vertical axle, driven by the force of water.

© 2017 by Ingenito Pietro - 

Disclaimer: Some of the  photos utilized in this website have been sourced online; if any IP or copyright has been infringed please notify us immediately by email to  

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