Located in the center of the homonymous gulf, Follonica is a famous seaside resort, whose city name probably derives from “fulloni”, meaning the bellows used in the foudries.
The first document in which the town is mentioned is dated back to 1038; however many important archaeological remains of the Etruscan period were founded during recent works.
Folonica’s history is strictly linked to smelting art and especially to Leopold II of Lorena, who firmerly wanted a foundry here.
In 1977, in the old iron and steel industry was putted on the Museum of Iron and Cast Iron, to testify local activity of artistic manufacture of iron. In the museum it is possible to revive all the phases of manufacture of iron and to admire the old machines used in the above mentioned manufacture.
The Church of San Leopoldo, also known with the name of “iron church” was designed by the architects Alessandro Manetti and Carlo Reishammer between 1836 and 1838. It is in neoclassic style with latin cross plan with iron pronao, rose window and apse. Inside it is characterised by only one nave and cross vault in addition to the use of the iron for the realisation of the base of the pulpit, the balaustrade of the presbytery, columns and candelabras.