Music books are placed to dry at the first floor of Venice Conservatory after being recovered from ground floor, Italy, Saturday, Nov. 16, 2019. High tidal waters returned to Venice on Saturday, four days after the city experienced its worst flooding in 50 years. Young Venetians are responding to the worst flood in their lifetimes by volunteering to help salvage manuscripts, clear out waterlogged books and lend a hand where needed throughout the stricken city.(AP Photo/Luca Bruno)

Young Venetians volunteer after flood of their lifetimes

November 16, 2019 - 11:48 am

VENICE, Italy (AP) — As soon as waters receded from this week’s devastating flood, about 50 young Venetians wearing rubber boots and gripped by a sense of determination showed up at the city’s Music Conservatory to help save precious manuscripts.

Thanks to their work, some 50 linear meters of archival manuscripts lay strewn in the conservatory’s upper floors to dry this weekend.

A network of young Venetians responded to the worst flood in their lifetimes by organizing work groups to help salvage what they could.

Modeling their network after the so-called “Mud Angels” who famously poured into Florence after the 1966 flood swamped that city’s treasures with mud from the Arno, these youth are calling themselves “Angels of the Salt,” for the corrosive, destructive saline content of the lagoon water.

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