Letter delivered 17 years late in Bolzano

A letter posted just 500 metres away from its intended destination in the northern Italian city of Bolzano has been delivered - 17 years late.

Letter delivered 17 years late in Bolzano
File photo: Monica Arellano-Ongpin/Flickr

The letter was signed by Giorgio Holzmann, an ex-politician with the now defunct Alleanza nazionale (National Alliance) party, and sent from its former headquarters in Via Locatelli in 1996, Alto Adige, a local news site, reported.

Posted with a 750 lire stamp, the letter was intended for one of the party’s supporters, who lived a short distance away on Piazza Mazzini and has since died. It contained a membership card for the Alleanza nazionale, which was merged with Silvio Berlusconi’s People of Freedom party in 2009.

Alto Adige did not name the recipient but said the letter was found by his widow on December 6th.

“The fact that there was a letter for him didn’t surprise me,” she told the website.

“In the three years since his death, letters continue to arrive for him…But with this one, I was surprised to see the yellow membership card, with a letter saying ‘I am pleased to send you the AN membership card for 1996’. So I knew something wasn’t right. I then checked the envelope and saw it was posted in 1996.” 

In September, a postcard sent from Ostia, a seaside town near Rome, in 1962, finally arrived at its destination in Brescia. READ MORE HERE.

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Shoe that lay in prof’s office is nearly 6,000 years old

A snowshoe discovered over a decade ago in Italy’s Dolomite mountains and previously thought to belong to a nineteenth century cattle farmer is actually nearly six thousand years old, it has been revealed.

Shoe that lay in prof's office is nearly 6,000 years old
The snowshoe was just a few thousand years older than thought. Photo: Roman Clara/Bolzano regional government
The shoe was found in 2003 in the melting snow of Gurgler Eisjoch glacier by Simone Bartolini, a cartographer for the Military Geographic Institute in Florence. Bartolini was mapping the Austrian-Italian border in South Tyrol, a German-speaking area of northern Italy. 
Assuming the shoe to be about a hundred years old, Bartolini displayed the shoe in his office as a memento. He only realised that it was much older than previously thought after discussing it with an archaeologist colleague. 
Radiocarbon dating by two separate labs now shows the shoe dates from 3800-3700 BC. This makes it up to 600 years older than the famous ice man Ötzi, who was found in 1991 just seven kilometres from the site of the latest discovery.
The shoe was presented at a press conference in South Tyrol on Monday. It is made from a 1.5 metre piece of birch wood bent into an oval. 
“It is the oldest snowshoe in the world,” the scientists said in a statement.
Catrin Marzoli, director of the South Tyrol office of archaeological monuments, told a press conference in Bolzano on Monday that the snow shoes were almost identical to those worn in the area until just a few decades ago.
“The glacier has given us an exceptional testimony”.
“It indicates that as early as the late Neolithic period people with proper equipment were present on the alpine watershed at an altitude of over three thousand meters,” she said, according to Südtirol News
Archaeologists believe that ancient glaciers melted by global warming could turn up a large number of prehistoric finds in the future.