Włochy / Pomnik
Quota 424 is the name given to the top of the small hill in the Altavilla Silentina area, where a small monument commemorates the fighting in September 1943, during Operation Avalanche, for the conquest and control of the area.
The hill was subjected to numerous clashes due to its tactical importance. In fact, it provided a tremendous vantage point over the entire landing zone. The battle, one of the fiercest, took place between 11 and 17 September and spread across Piana del Sele. Near the monument visitors can find material that the locals find in the soil of the hillside.
Although scarcely known to the chronicles and subsequent historiography, the battle that took place on the hills on which the town of Altavilla Silentina stands was among the most important ones from a strategic and military perspective. From the highest elevation of the territory, which reaches the now symbolic 'Quota 424', the enemy manoeuvre could be controlled and this was essential for the defensive operations of the German troops. The hand-to-hand fighting between German and American troops lasted until the ammunition ran out. On 15 September, the hill and the village were subjected to a naval bombardment that caused much damage to the population that had already been exhausted by the fighting in the previous days. When the fighting ended, there were more than two hundred casualties between Germans and Americans in the area over a period of about seven days. The monument, dedicated to those who fell in those battles, stands next to a small votive shrine that already existed before those events.
Today, 'Quota 424' is part of a wide landscape, full of cultivations, orchards and isolated farms that characterises the land between the districts of Pagliara and Campo Fiorito. When visitors reach the junction with State Road No. 19 of Calabrie, they can continue north along the latter until you reach the winding bridge over the Sele River, a very important strategic point for the outcome of the battle in those days.