The Port of Augusta, on the shores of the island of Sicily, lies on a small promontory on the island’s southeastern shores between the Gulf of Augusta and the Ionian Sea. Connected to the main island by two bridges, Augusta has long been a naval station, and it is now an important Sicilian trading port. It is one of Italy’s most important ports, particularly for the oil refineries nearby. In 2006, almost 34 thousand people lived in the Port of Augusta.
The Port of Augusta’s traditional industries include agriculture, salt mining, fishing, and anchovy preservation. Over the past years, it has become an important trading port for Sicily, with much industrial development on the waterfront. Due to the oil refinery and chemical complex at the waterfront, the Port of Augusta suffers serious environmental problems.
The ancient Port of Augusta was a Greek settlement and then a Roman military base.
In 1232 AD, Emperor Frederick II founded the Port of Augusta near the ancient site of a Dorian town, Megara Hyblaea, when he destroyed the towns of Centuripe and Montalbano because of their rebellions. The Port of Augusta was one of the Emperor’s favorite vacation spots, and he built the Castello Svevo (Swabian Castle) there.
During the 15th and 16th Centuries, the Port of Augusta was a busy banking center. An earthquake in 1693 near destroyed the town, but it was soon rebuilt.
In the early 1800s, the Knights of Malta selected the Port of Augusta as a supply depot. The city became part of the Kingdom of Italy in 1861.
During World War II, Allied forces led by Britain’s General Montgomery used the Port of Augusta as entry point for their invasion of Sicily in 1943.