2 centuries, 6 generations
SINCE 1833 FROM 1900
It’s 1833 when Francesco Marcone went to the Sulmona Civil Registry to register the born of his son Filippo and declare, then his profession already launched as “confettaio”. Just here, in the Peligna Valley, among the mountains of Abruzzo, the extraordinary William di Carlo’s history has begun.
In 1894 Filippo became owner of the “Marcone&Figli” confetti industry, one of the most famous manufacturing companies in Sulmona and central Italy.
The delicious confetti were made in the so-called “bassina”: large copper pots hung from ceiling, under a warm brazier where the almonds rolled arounds and slowly combined themselves with sugar, thanks to the constant movements of the master confettai.
Achille, son of Filippo, was born a few years before, in 1870. The years of youth spent in the father’s industry were a priceless source of experience for Achille and allowed him to become famous and appreciated by many people: when the King Umberto I of Savoy came to Sulmona, Achille, beyond welcoming the guests as well as dealing with the entire catering, gave him a chocolate box depicting his face. The King got impressed by the hospitality and the delicacies tasted, so he decided to give to Marcone Family a diamond brooch, whose image is still today integral part of the company’s brand.
Besides the Achille’s job satisfactions kept increasing. In 1925, he realized a chocolate copy of the Ovidio statue, just inaugurated in Piazza XX Settembre in Sulmona, to give it to the well-known sculptor Ettore Ferrari who realized the original one. And, he also invented the abruzzese “version” of the cassata.
FROM 1900 TO 1950
Among the various merchants who went to Sulmona in the early 1900s, there was also Gaetano Di Carlo, Centerba manufacturer and coming from Giulianova, he often went to the town to manage numerous business contacts and sell his liqueour.
Gaetano often went with his son Alfredo who felt madly in love with a beautiful local girl named Rosina, Chiara’s sister and Panfilo La Civita’s daughter, owner of the homonym confetti factory situated in the old town. At first, the relationship between the two young people was disapproved of the respective families, to the point that, they used to send each other coded love messages through L’Amore Illustrato (“The Illustrated Love”), a very popular magazine at that time.
Then, from this marriage they had, in 1903 in Giulianova, their son William Di Carlo. After just four years, Alfredo and Rosina migrated to United States and they granted the custody of William, who was 4 years old, to the aunt Chiara. In the meantime, the latter became the owner of the “La Civita” confetti factory”, inherited by her father Panfilo.
The new business-woman immediately decided to differentiate the artistic activity relating to the creation of the famous Sulmona Flowers from the confetti production for which, in 1921, she launched ad hoc society with Mr. Pietro Celidonio in order to give a job to her nephew, William, and his son.
So, the first “Riunite Confetti La Civita – Celidonio Factory was launched.
In the same period, Achille Marcone had two children, Umberto and Clotilde, both involved in the family bakery, situated in the Sulmona old town.
Thus, it happened that Clotilde knew William; the two young people felt in love with each other and decided to get married even though they belonged to families whose companies strongly competed against each other. In 1923 a share of the “Industrie Riunite Confetti” was transferred to the new business partner Achille Marcone, who managed the company with Chiara La Civita since 1924, following the exit of Pietro Celidonio. As a consequence, the “Riunite Confetti – Marcone” Factories were founded, where both Umberto Marcone and William Di Carlo were actively involved.
The company enhanced its repution until 1936, after many vicissitudes and some misunderstanding between Chiara and Achille, the latter left definitively the company and his company stock was passed to the son William, given life to the current “Riunite Confetti La Civita – Di Carlo” Factory.
FROM 1950 TO 1995
Despite of the war just ended, the bombardments of the Anglo-American allies who destroyed a good part of Sulmona and the consequent death of his mother Clotilde, the sacrifices and the good effort were able to re-emerge the entire Peligna Valley.
William Di Carlo and his wife Clotilde were also able to rebuild the confetti factory near the square of the train station of the town and back to smile again with their activity.
An activity deeply loved by William, a real artist in the making of almond paste: it was indeed evident and recognised his art of reproducing everything in several shapes, so close to reality to be misleading for those who admired them. In June 1965, the president Gronchi came to Sulmona for the two -thousand year celebrations of the birth of the poet Ovidio Nasone, and found himself in front of a almond paste reproduction of “The Metamorphosis” of the Latin poet and started browsing.
William and Clotilde had eight children, but only two of them have handed down his art until the present days: Italo and Chiara.
FROM 1995 UNTIL NOW
Since 1995 William Di Carlo junior took the helm of the “Riunite Confetti William Di Carlo Factories”, Italo and Rosetta’s son. William is also President of AGIRE, Agri-food Innovation Centre for the region of Abruzzo.
On 15 november 1999 it was built the new art factory along the Viale del Lavoro, not far from the the old town of Sulmona.
The company, while keeping its traditional features, with its confetti, confetti flowers, chocolate and torrone sweets, has already reached the entire national territory overcoming the borders to establish itself in almost all the EU countries and in many Extra-European countries (Usa, Canada, Russia, Emirates, Australia, Brazil) through a dealer network or direct clients.
Considering the acknowledged high-quality, the William Di Carlo’s products are always addressed to medium-high market. It follows that, in choosing the supply channels, so far they have been favoured the specialized shops and, in some cases, in line with the market trend, a few selected large distribution centers with agreements for specific product lines.
William Di Carlo, today as yesterday, creates confetti respecting the family pastry-making tradition, but always with special attention to reserach, innovation and people.