An extract from the book entitled "History of Italians in SA 1489 - 1989" by Gabriel Sani, page 211. Read the excerpt >>

The mine was started by two brothers, Vincenzo and Antonio Ciolli, who originated from the Abruzzi province in Italy. From 1939 until 1951, the Ciolli Brothers quarried the yellow/white stone from a deposit located next to the river at Klipheuwel. They did this on land owned by the Railways. The Ciollis supplied 4 rail trucks of stone a day, which was used to fill in the breakwater at the Cape Town harbour.

In 1951, the Ciolli Brothers started Gran Sasso Quarry with small earthworks on Henry Mellish's Durbanville farm. In 1953, they bought 12,85 hectares of the farm land from Henry Mellish. They named their Durbanville quarry, Gran Sasso Quarry; after the Gran Sasso mountain, which is the highest mountain in the Abruzzi province.