The year 1848 saw the beginning of the First Italian War of Independence and the critical event known as the Le Cinque giornate di Milano, fierce fighting between the city’s population and Austrian troops between March 18 and 22 of that year. The spark that set off the rebellion began in prior days, when the news spread of revolutionary uprisings broke out in France, Austria, Hungary, Bohemia and Croatia.
On March 21st, 1848, the Milanese captured the Austrian barracks and later that evening forced the retreat of Marshal Radetzky and his Austrian troops, who withdrew from the city. The events helped thrust Milan into a central role of the Risorgiomento – the process of Italian independence and unification – as volunteers from nearby cities of Turin and Genoa began arriving the next day.
The structure of the map itself is quite interesting, laid out on on nine sheets, eight of which are dissected into twelve sections of 14 square cms. The central section instead contains fifteen sections including printed lists of sites on either side of the core of the city.
The sheets overlap in a kind of puzzle, duplicating each in lateral sections around the central sheet, resulting in an overall map of nine by nice sections, i.e. eighty-one total sections (the external measurement of which is 126 x 126 cm).
The maps are contained in original green card folder and slipcase with a printed label: “Die Pläne sind beim Verfasser selbst zu bekommen. Adresse Professor Franz Valmagini, Cont del Carmine. N1647.”
Further information: The map shows the Strada Ferrata per Monza (opened 1840) and the Strada Ferrata Ferdinandea (1846) but no other railways. It extends from Bresso (N) to Quinto Sole (S) and Novegro to Baggio (W). Scale is circa one inch to 500 passi.