La mine from defense a Vieste has been considered for many years a cornerstone of European mining archeology for the extraction of flint, both for its high antiquity (about 7000 years) and for the typology of the plant, which already appears highly evolved at the beginning of the process of neotilization that invests the western Mediterranean between the seventh and sixth millennium BC. The mine, discovered in 1981, has been the subject of systematic research since 1986, which has made it possible to explore and survey a considerable part of the upper floor of the structure, whose extension is currently around half a hectare. It is a mine of the so-called "chambers and pillars" type, with two superimposed floors, excavated in two distinct limestone layers containing flint nodules. The upper floor today appears as an extended horizontal cavity with a very low ceiling (about 50 cm), with rock pillars spared, filled with debris up to the ceiling, inside which corridors delimited by dry stone walls have been created. Ceramic vases were found along the corridors, sometimes whole and with food remains inside, stone lamps and mining tools such as flint picks and mallets for digging limestone. The presence of whole ceramic vases in their original position has led to the hypothesis that the mine was quickly abandoned following a seismic event, which would later definitively close the entrances.
The Archaeological park is currently not open to visitors.
For further information, we refer you to the Book “Defensola: a flint mine from 7000 years ago” edited by Attilio Galiberti et al story of the discovery of the mine by Franco Ruggieri.