Documents from the Sal Republic

Scope and Content

The collection includes material from different administrative departments. One group of files from the Ministero degli affari esteri contains around 350 documents pertaining to the requisition of properties for government use. Other sections include orders from the Ministero delle forze armate: Sottosegretariato di Stato per la marina, vehicle and travel permits from the Guardia del Duce, and anti-Allied and pro-Fascist propaganda from the Ministero della cultura popolare. There are also three passports issued by the regime, around 40 intercepted radio messages from Allied broadcasts, including from Reuters and from the Vatican radio, and twenty bulletins issued by the regime's news agency, the Agenzia Stefani.

Administrative / Biographical History

In September 1943 the Italian government surrendered to the Allies, and subsequently declared war on Nazi Germany. Mussolini, freed from captivity by the Germans, was instructed by Hitler to set up a new Fascist regime in German-occupied northern Italy. This regime was a republic by default, since King Victor Emmanuel had renounced Fascism, and was officially called the Italian Social Republic (Repubblica Sociale Italiana). It was based along the shores of Lake Garda, with most of the more important administrative offices located in the small town of Sal, and therefore came to be known as the Sal Republic. It lasted until the Allied forces and Italian partisans re-took the area in 1945, when Mussolini was captured and executed.

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Description prepared by Bridget Andrews.

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