Each new bathing establishment is relevant to a metropolis or a small population center, (sacred place in the human consortium to charity, where the physical conditions of the organism are improved, which contribute to constituting the atmosphere in which the process takes place. natural life such as the increase of the sciences, the culture of the arts and commerce, and military power) marks the movement of civilization, to which the physical and moral life of a people is united, the so-called civil progress of an epoch.
Ben says Gioberti that civilization by its nature equal to any other force, perfects itself and fills its own gaps.
The mineral waters of Cammarata, province of Girgenti, hardly recall any mention in the stories.
After so much forgetfulness in the extensive and delightful area of the Lycoplatans (1), a picturesque valley, the Establishment of sulphate-alkaline waters now rises, to which so many patients with skin diseases resorted, and obtained prodigious and rapid healings.
The 52C. D. Giuseppe Longo, owner of the lands and waters, eminently deserving of social well-being, taking advantage of the happy opportunity of the Cammarata train station, open eight minutes away on foot, so that it can be accessed in three and a half hours from Palermo , and in two from Girgenti, he thought of turning his waters to the better good of the sick, and erected a bathing establishment there.
It is dear to us to transcribe the opinion of a competent medical authority on the matter of the Sulfo-alkaline water plant of Cammarata, published in the New gazette of Palermo at n. 146, to 8 May 1884.
Mineral baths of Cammarata.
In a countryside of Cammarata from ancient times a mineral water flows copiously, to which they have resorted in every age (Volgarmente Platani). numerous sick people from nearby places, and they have regained their health there; nor could it happen otherwise, that water being sulfur-alkaline like the healthiest in Sicily, and on land. This gave birth in the owner of the water of Cammarata, the well-deserving don Giuseppe Iongo, the very happy idea of raising one meter far from the spring in a high place, and with an extended horizon, a plant suitable to welcome those of Sicily, who wanted to restore their ill health in salutary waters. There are already four bathrooms on the ground floor, which have been in operation for a year, and a few more elegant ones will be finished in a few weeks. Upstairs there are various rooms in order and shortly thereafter, the last hand will be given to the cd placed in the kitchen.
In addition, by drawing from a spring of very clear drinking water from a high place, the plant will be amply supplied for all uses of life, and as an aid for the care in cases of very delicate skins, which need to make the water less strong. mineral.
The owner, who does things right, has entrusted the task to competent men for a very minute quantitative examination of the waters so that the customers of the Establishment know which elements they rely on; and since he does not want anyone to move from his house without a well-founded hope of finding health in the waters of Cammarata, the enemy of announcing them as the panacea for all diseases has made conscientious clinical observations undertaken, in order to establish which diseases are beneficial, and which ones are not.
In this study he asked for the competition of prof. of dermatology of our University; knowing from experience that the waters of Cammarata, like most of the minerals, bring their salutary action mainly on skin diseases.
In these observations we also want to establish the practical and rational way of choosing, and of the union of the various ways of treatment; that is, baths, drinks, and anointings of mud.
The meritorious owner and founder is also proposed to put a carriage and cart service at the Cammarata station at the arrival of each train from Palermo and Girgenti, in order to transport men and furnishings to the factory. - In this regard, we like to let you know that the Longo factory is a few kilometers from Cammarata, but from the railway station of this name it is so close that it can be reached in five minutes on foot. waters of Cammarata after only three hours of comfortable travel, and after two and a half hours starting from Girgenti. necessary (except linen, which each bather will bring with him for his own peace of mind); however, if some meticulous individual or a lover of comforts wants to bring mattresses or other things with him, the provident Longo has the means of transport ready at the station.
For the near future, Don Giuseppe Longo has two projects which will bring to fulfillment what will be suggested by experience from the advice of practical men. The first project is to enlarge the current building up to three times to add other rooms for accommodation, bathrooms, a beautiful dining room to be able to function as a restaurant, and a living room that gathers the swimmers, and amuses them with the billiard table and the piano.
The other project is to build a small house with all the comforts of life in the heights of the farm just a few minutes away from the bathrooms, in a healthy position with an enchanting horizon.
It seems to us that the new Establishment must have a fortunate future, bringing together all the conditions that recommend it: and we believe we are giving praise, solemn praise to the meritorious priest, who, instead of enjoying the comforts of life in his old age. advanced in which it finds itself, it spends time, thoughts, and a part of its patrimony for the benefit of suffering humanity and civilization.
The surgeon of the plant is Mr. cav. Giuseppe Biancorosso.
The graphic surface of the land, the district called Acqua fitusa, where the bathing establishment is located, is above sea level at about 275 meters, and lies on beds of compact limestone, alternately stratified and covered by tertiary soils. The same area of the sulfur soils of Casteltermini.
There are many rocks overhanging steep, granite, that is formed of crystallized minerals, grouped in bulk, and a large deposit of fine-grained bituminous stoneware.
The configuration of the district offers the observer among the various prominences, depressions and accidents of fertile and very pleasant soil, the eastern side of the hill the hibiscus, which is the last part of the chain of hills, which descend from the majestic mount of Cammarata.
There are troglodyte caves, and unequivocal signs of great cataclysms, and of ancient dwellings.
The various rooms, equipped with all comforts, are high, spacious and cheerful.
The influence of the valleys, and the various hills, and the direction of the winds make the climatic conditions excellent.
In the summer months, the daytime temperature in the shade is pleasant, and the average variations in heat range from 22 to z6 degrees centigrade.
The spring, very close to the Establishment, due to its physical constitution between dense limestone layers, cannot face steep slopes, cataclysms due to the alternation of times and seasons.
There is an apparatus for heating the water, which in less than twelve minutes makes it boiling, the water transmitted into a large, well covered tank. with pipes it goes down into the tubs, which are almost all of marble, where one can make the mixture with natural tepid glue at will.
The plant is rich in good drinking water.
of the Establishment was made in April I885; and closed prematurely due to the dire circumstances of Asian cholera on September 2 of the same year.
How to use sulfur-alkaline water (I).
The immersion in the baths can be done at the natural heat of the water, which is almost lukewarm in the hours of am.
sensitive subjects will be able to their pleasure to make the mixture with hot mineral.
If the temperature of the liquid is raised, the absorbency of the skin also increases.
The average duration was 3o minutes.
Many young subjects have prolonged it with relief for nearly an hour.
Soft drink water does not cause any disturbances, on the contrary it is very useful as an excellent alkaline water.
Clinical Journal on Water Efficiency
In making public the scrupulous observations on the sick, welcomed in the bathhouse of Cammarata in the summer months of 1885, the way to go is not long.
As a brief mention of the first year, a summary exposition of the culminating diseases is produced for now, which felt the beneficial effects of baths, drinks, and the local use of mud; such as they resulted from clinical observation.
Therefore it is necessary to order them into three categories; that is, dermatosis, rheumatism, and scrofulous affections.
The living being is in immediate relationship for some of its parts, such as the skin, with the environment.
The mud, or the sediment of mineral water, has been successfully used in the rooms of the dermatological clinic in Palermo by the distinguished prof. G. Prophet.
In making public the scrupulous observations on the sick, welcomed in the bathing establishment of Cammarata in the summer months of the tSS5 year, the way to go is not long.
As a brief mention of the first year, a summary exposition of only the culminating diseases, which felt the beneficial effects of baths, drinks, and the local use of rank, is proved for now; such as they resulted from clinical observation.
Therefore it is necessary to order them into three categories; that is, dermatosis, rheumatism, and scrofulous affections.
The living being is in immediate relationship for some of its parts, such as the skin, with the histological environment in which you live that administers the subsistence material to beings (Verncuil).
The integumentary surface, active in the functional task, and in the material exchange, organ of a typical anatomical compage, regardless of topographical and functional differences, accessible to the touch, at low, what temperature, and excitable to various morbid causes, is frequently affected by various efflorescences, now widespread, now isolated.
If we want to judge from the facts, observed with care, the sulfur-alkaline waters have produced good effects among skin diseases, in herpes, and especially in herpes tonsurane under the ordinary forms of herpes vesiculosus, erythema maculosus, eczema marginate with eruption. with chronic circular plaques; and in the diffuse and partial itchy forms in the hands, ears, and forehead.
They could not mention the causes to the sick, as they are not well known to science.
They were, however, of lymphatic habit, and with vulnerable skin.
As a conspicuous morbid localization, parasitic sycosis (Gruby), trichomycosis nodosa (Ilobner) was observed on the upper lip, which, following the penetration of the microphyte into the hairs and follicles, has for visible clinical characteristics a pathological relevance to the bearded part of the cheeks , cd is often the consequence, that is the terminal phase in the (herpes tonsurans.)
The morbid process, sufficiently revealed in its external appearance, was chronic. A local eczema, as in folliculitis barbac (Kobnet) must have been valid for a stimulus, which operated in the peri-follicular conjunctive tissue, as the cause of the sycosis.
Local mud poultices are a valuable means of curing this eruption of red, hard, painful knots with scattered, recent, and resolving pustules.
There has been no lack of opportunity to greatly appreciate the sulfur-alkaline waters, and the local use of mud, among chronic dermatoses, in eczema in the neck, nape, and hair with clear notes of diffuse and point redness.
Eczema, a very frequent skin affection, of exact local origin in the plurality of cases, sometimes not associated with alteration of the nervous system in the centers, or in the peripheral nerves, which depend on it, which is related to psoriasis, but which is not considered as identical morbid process, as Campbell wished to demonstrate, despite the examples in support of his thesis of the Butkley and Wayler clinics, and the authorities of Garrod, Urchison, and Paget, was also observed extended to the face with thickening of the epidermis and of the coin.
Dermatosis, especially in a soldier, reached its clinical climax with its humidity, gave a mood, which was a whining filter of serum.
With the baths, the drinks, and the local use of mud, the subject achieved the desired cure in 20 days.
Human mange has been studied with its three orders of symptoms; very common disease in disinherited families, and due to the presence of the acarus. In three forms of mange the valid etiological influences that favored its transmission were repeated infections with mangy. L; rash was extensive in various places on the surface of the body, with annoying itching. The therapy was entrusted exclusively to hot baths, and to anointing with mud shots.
In the scrupulous evaluation of the facts, the sulfur-alkaline waters and the mud are among the countless acaricidal substances: there are not even any after-effects left.
Many subjects, both men and women, were in the last summer season for the sultry heat troubled by itching, not of the severe form (prurigo Agria Feroz hebra), but of the prurigus parzialis with very showy rash, of very small red knots, similar to chronic urticaria , without typical localization; however in some cases of prurigo of ancient origin the symptoms of a chronic dermatitis were visible.
The itch was observed without any hereditary disposition.
The sulfur-alkaline spas are effective for the treatment of itching; however we must not make use of them (aposi) so fleetingly, as happens in health centers.
Shingles healed with mud baths and anointings. The sick had not suffered a similar disease before.
We cannot close this article without talking about the fissures, or the lacerations, or fissure excavations of the epidermis in a symmetrical form on the palms of the hands; some deep up to minting with bristling and bleeding margins. He was an invalid from the province of Caltanissetta. He achieved the cure with mud poultices.
The greatest number of diseases was represented by chronic muscle and joint rheumatism.
All the causes of rheumatism were colds, and usual irregularities of the cutaneous respirable. Some people had lived in cold-humid and not very sunny houses, of such clinical cases there were very many.
A monial lady, who had suffered from acute rheumatism of all the joints for three years before, and who in the following years had been subjected to the same painful attacks with the appearance of joint fluxes, gradually became completely paralyzed.
When she was received in the Establishment she could not bend, and her legs could not flex. With the hot baths he was able to go out on his own legs, and eat as in the healthy state, with his own hands.
baths were useful in sciatica, and in migraine.
One woman, among the various infirm, was caught following a cutaneous refrigeration from right posterior scia¬tica; the pains disseminated to nearby tissues had been around for five months, and were deaf and gradually more intense. There seemed to be, in addition to the common rheumatizing note, due to anatomo-pathological cause, a diffuse peripheral neuritis (Filets and terminal nerve networks.
The forms of migraine eliminated the concept of a deep lesion to the crtphalic centers (development of tumor.
The headache was continuous, due to a simple rheumatizing cause.
the sick had previously suffered vague rheumatoid pains.
The salutary influence of water in chronic rheumatism can be affirmed behind so many favorable results.
Skin diseases and rheumatism have been studied so far, it remains important to know how sulfur-alkaline waters behave in scrofulous processes.
Among the affections of scrofula, which are affected quite notably by sea baths, scrofulous conjunctivitis was observed in three boys, including one belonging to the well-to-do class.
It seems a splendid case, where the scrofula found favorable conditions for its development in an imperfect nutrition.
In a small patient with a spondylitis, or dorsal deviation, which predominates in childhood, the conjunctivitis marked a diathetic manifestation with copious proliferation of anatomical elements, extended to the cornea.
The morbid form of the conjunctivitis accentuated, according to the dermatological doctrines about their division, the eruptive, which is to be the very clear note of the scrofula.
The baths and the drinks were sufficient to give a very happy result: that is to say, the disappearance of the dark red color of the conjunctiva, which had lost its smoothness and homogeneity, and the hateful impression of light, the photophobia. The cornea regained the state of transparency, to which the function of the eye is inexorably linked.
Baths and drinks favored the adhesion of certain subcutaneous fistulas which had become refractory to local surgical treatments, in subjects with a scrofula disposition, consecutive to small cold abscesses of the cellular tissue on the back, and under aponeurotics (Denonvillicrs) without primary lesion of the bones, and not accompanied by phlogistic work.
They have also been profitable in the alteration of the ganglia of scrofulous individuals (scrofulous adenitis) with hardening of the tissues, the so-called fungal skin ulcers; and in simple chronic adenitis of the lymphatic ganglia, characterized by indolent swelling in various lymphatic glands without traces of scrofula or syphilis.
Syphilitic dermatoses, such as roseola, and acne have not yet been observed; not even the most frequent manifestations of constitutional syphilis; for these and other diseases, taking advantage of the reasons that will come to us from clinical science, we will try to follow the new facts carefully.
For now we do not continue with the analysis of the observations, other than those, which have been mentioned among the most important, although the narrowness of the same space has not allowed us to report them in full, which proved to be the therapeutic efficacy of sulfur-alkaline waters. by Cammarata.
It seems that we have reached the modest aim set for illnesses, which have given the occasion to carry out such assessments.
the Establishment then, although it is in its infancy, cannot despair a growing confidence with the evidence of the facts, and from the aesthetic point of view it will not even leave room for strong criticism.
The mineral baths of cammarata (taken from the book of 1886)
The source and the caves
The source of '' Fitusa water '' is located 8 km from the center of San Giovanni Gemini, to the right of the old route of the state road 189 PA-AG, in an area easily accessible both from the junction for Cammarata and from the nearby railway station Cammarata-San Giovanni Gemini, along the Agrigento-Palermo line . The springs emerge close to a rocky ridge that mainly overlooks the San Crispino district to the east and the well-known Puzzillo district to the north.
The caves of '' Acqua Fitusa '' they are of particular interest for their geological formation, as well as for their historical importance. They fall within a territory once belonging to the Sac. Giuseppe Longo, who, towards the end of the 19th century, built a building probably intended for thermal treatments, now abandoned for some time. The waters are found inside caves dating back to the Stone Age and where traces of the passage of man have been found. The caves, especially those of Contrada Puzzillo, have never been adequately explored, yet many lithic finds and artifacts found there allow us to affirm that they were inhabited in the period epipaleolitic. In the course of some exploration, shards of clay material, smooth and painted ceramics were also found. The cave consists of a small entrance hall, a few meters deep, with an opening in the end that leads into the cave itself. After this opening, you find yourself inside a gigantic dome. The dimensions of the cave are impressive: at least 20 m high, it has a diameter of about 50 m. The typical formations of these places are beautiful: stalactites and stalagmites cover the vault and the ground of the cave taking on various colors (white, pink and black). The waters of the springs can be classified as: mineral, hypothermal, sulphurous-salsobromo-iodine-alkaline and have particular therapeutic properties in the treatment of many skin diseases.
One of these caves is that of Acqua Fitusa, it was explored in 1931 by Mr. La Pilusa, who wrote a report explaining in detail its characteristics. The entrance is located in the middle of a sheer wall about 10 meters above the ground. There are openings near the entrance, but of little importance.
From the main entrance which, as it widens, you come to a large chamber, made up of limestone boulders. From this chamber you pass to a narrow tunnel that represents the main corridor of the cave, which must be crossed on all fours and, in certain points, even crawling. The echo of the stones thrown is lost in the distance, giving the sensation of an incalculable depth. It does not allow the passage of man therefore it is impossible to probe it thoroughly. In the corridor there are also several lateral openings, but of little importance.
After about 60 meters from the camerone, the tunnel forks: the left arm gradually tightens until it closes; the right arm, on the other hand, gives access to a series of stairs and tunnels that compromise exploration making it really difficult. After about 4 meters, the arm forks again, presenting a slit 20 meters wide and quite deep. On the right, there is a narrow passage that extends for 40 meters and leads into the main corridor, almost at the height of the big room. Continuing further north, the corridor widens and takes on the appearance of a rather low and wide vaulted cave. The discovery of numerous shards of vases and other objects in worked raw earth is noteworthy. The gallery, which extends for about 20 meters, leads to the hall of stalactites. It is a large room, circular in shape, which transmits the vision of one of the most beautiful spectacles that can be admired to the human eye, in fact, in the flickering light of candles, the myriads of droplets suspended on the tips of the stalactites reflect, in a play of magnificent iridescence, a real symphony of colors.
Countless intertwined stalactites in various shapes are attached to the vault of the large room, while straight stalagmites rise from the ground and rocks. In the cave there are no streams and no air currents. Scientific exploration of the Fitusa Water Cave has only recently begun, thanks to the Italian Institute of Prehistory and the Superintendence of Antiquities of Agrigento.
Regarding the chronology, from the coal samples, found in the gray state, it is possible to estimate their origin around 13760 years ago.
According to the unanimous testimony of ancient historians, summarized by Thucydides, our territory, before the Greek colonization, was occupied by the Sicans who had given their name to the island therefore called Sikania, instead of Trinacria.