The town of Marsciano is well known for its production of brickwork and pottery. These represent the underlying theme of the city, through which its history unwinds, not just from an architectural and urbanistic point of view, but above all through its business and economic relations and its entrepreneurial families and social stratification. The geographic location of Marsciano and its territory run along a major road, the ancient via Orvietana. The development of Marsciano and the constant presence of clay production over the centuries have been made possible by the wealth of good quality clays, woods from which to obtain timber and the availability of water. This production flourished during the Renaissance and was documented by the presence in the area of at least twenty-nine ollai (where clay pots were made). In fact, several historical documents from the 16th century stated that “the main activity of those men is to make pignatte (pots)”. Little by little, pottery production began to dwindle, following the creation of industries, in which household goods used in everyday life were mass-produced, using different materials. From the second half of the 18th century, the activity was geared towards the building of construction elements, with the emergence of industrial businesses linked to the production of brickwork. Their development led to the establishment in the 20th century of the Fornaci Briziarelli (Briziarelli Furnaces), representing Umbria’s main group operating in this field. Today, Marsciano is the home of the Associazione Italiana Città del Laterizio, which is a domestic network joining together all the towns (about twenty), in which there has been a significant development over the years in the field of brickwork production on an industrial, artisan or artistic level.

TAKEN FROM ABITARE IL TERRITORIO (Living in the territory) volume 1

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