San Martino in Rio

SAN MARTINO IN RIO dates back to the first half of the eleventh century when the first documents mention the appointment of the Patron Saint and construction of its castle. Charlemagne donated these lands to the Church of Reggio Emilia which in turn, through Bishop Maltraversi Nicholas, sold them in around 1050 to Boniface of Canossa. It subsequently became a fiefdom of the Roberti da Tripoli family in around 1115. The Council of Elders of San Martino drew up the statues, deeds of local governance regulating administrative, civil and juridical matters. In 1618, the constitutions were printed. After the French Revolution, San Martino became part of the Cisalpine Republic, losing however the villas of Prato and Lemizzone, ceded to the jurisdiction of Correggio.

There are those who, at San Martino in Rio, still remember the arrival of the first vehicles of the Car Museum in 1956. The Regina d’Africa, a Fiat 634 truck, arrived from Via di Modena at the entrance to the noble town of San Martino in Rio, transporting three vehicles between tractor and trailer. During other trips, the Regina d’Africa and other trucks transported to San Martino in Rio around twelve old cars collected by Domenico Gentili and stacked in the yards and under the lean-to roofs of his firm. These were the origin nucleus of what is still known as the San Martino racing team.
While this species of collection-museum continued to expand with new, makeshift premises, tens of fantastic, rare items arrived at San Martino, located by Barighin, a well-known local personage with a passion for cars, all over Italy. The distant origin of some of the vehicles of the old Museum that still remain is revealed by their number-plates.


San Martino in Rio

Mayor: Paolo Fuccio
Official website:
Town Hall: Corso Umberto I, 22 – Postal code 42018
Population: 8.053
Phone: 0522 636711
Surface area: Km2 22,65



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