Camera del Lavoro di Milano

Headquarter of the Sindacati Fascisti dellIndustria and, after 25th April 1945, headquarter of the free trade union. The square is where Stella Zuccolotto was killed by three armed fascists, on 23rd April 1946.

The building in Porta Vittoria 43, current headquarter of the Camera del Lavoro of Milan has been home to the Sindacati Fascisti dell’Industria for more than 10 years. Built in the 1930s and designed by architects Angelo Bordoni, Luigi Maria Caneva and Antonio Carminati, it was seen by Mussolini as a symbol of the strength of his regime. In reality, the fascist union was never really successful in Milan, despite its monopolistic position obtained in 1925 with the dissolution of the Confederazione generale del Lavoro and of the Camere del Lavoro. Twenty years had to pass for the Camera del Lavoro to come back and for Milan’s workers to have their home back. In the night between the 25th and the 26th April 1945, the partisans of the 6th Brigata Garibaldi (Nello) attacked the palace in corso Porta Vittoria 43.

Two fighters lost their lives in the clash, but the building was eventually occupied and given to the Comitato Sindacale di Milano e provincia, which up to that point had been operating underground.

The re-institution of the committee was reported on the pages of the newspapers “l’Unità” and “l’Avanti!”, and the new secretary Giuseppe Alberganti announced on Radio Milano that: “After more than 20 years of fascist unionism, suppression of freedom of association, […] our Camera del Lavoro, thanks to the heroism of our workers, resumes its activity”.
A year later, on the evening of 23rd April 1946, the Camera del Lavoro was the target of a fascist attack in which Stella Zuccolotto, a member of the lega portieri participating to a meeting on the first floor, lost her life. Ms Zuccolotto died on 28th April 1946, and a large crowd of people took part to her funeral.
A plate in the forecourt of the Camera del Lavoro commemorates her departure, which was initially dated 1945 and later corrected with the exact date, while below it, the verses composed by Alberto Bellocchio and taken from “Sirena Operaia” embellishing her memory.


Debora Migliucci