The washtubes

The ancient public wash-houses of Mezzaluna and Saint Andrew were built at the end of the nineteenth century. They lean against the walls of two defense batteries of the old port of Milazzo, which date back to the second half of the sixteenth century.

Located on the beach area, the washhouses have been fundamental for the Vaccarella community for many decades. Water from there, in fact, was used for daily routine tasks, and it is still used for fishing-related activities. Before then, the community had to draw water from springs in the promontory of Cape Milazzo (“S.Opolo”, la “Funtanedda”), or from cisterns, or private wells.


The installation of the wash-houses and their use, which prolonged for about a century, provided for great improvement in hygienic conditions and for a better quality of life.

The building of both washhouses may approximately date back to 1883.  Date and coat of arms are carved in the municipal fountain located in the tiny Mezzaluna square. Washhouses and fountain are fed by the municipal tank which had been just built near the Spanish walls and the Walled Town.

Two washhouses are placed on the sides of the base of Mezzaluna Battery. A third one is located close to St. Andrew Battery, opposite its namesake church; there is no trace of its probable twin, though.


Text edited by Italia Nostra sezione di Milazzo