In the last decade of the 19th century (1897 is named most often), Gerolamo Ceresa began to work as a subcontractor for the pipe factory of Ferdinando Rossi in Barasso, where extensive building projects had led to bottlenecks in production. In this first period the bowls were made in Cassano Magnago while the mouth pieces were prepared and polished in a very small workshop in Cavaria. Even so there was already a water driven generator. The Ceresa sons Pietro, Enrico and Luigi grew up joining the family business one after another. Although Pietro and Enrico were sent to the front, the production during World War I could be continued.
In 1919 the Ceresas acquired an area of land on Via Visconti in Cassano Magnago where a new factory was built. All business activities were united in the new rooms. Since the complete factory was operated electrically, the firm received the new name Gerolamo Ceresa - Fabbrica elettrica pipe. "Electric pipe factory" sounds a bit amusing today, but at that time it was certainly the proud expression of modernity! To bring forward the company furthermore on the European markets, Enrico went to Saint-Claude in 1923 for some years to study the fabrication procedures of the French manufacturers. Returned to Italy in 1926, he extensively restructured and modernised the firm. A new name was coined: Fabbrica Pipe Cassano. The order fabrication for Rossi was continued, but from now on also own pipes under the brand name Cassano were offered with increasing success. The Ceresas were among the very first who strove to sell Italian made pipes with a quality above the abundantly produced industry ware.
Pietro Ceresa emigrated to Brazil in 1929. He had two orders in his baggage: To promote the sales of the Cassano pipes in South America and to attach contacts with suppliers of Brazilian horn. Horn was still with the most important raw material for mouthpieces and Brazilian counted as the best. (Presently not known, whether there is a connection to the brand Cassano Pipes in Argentina.)
In the 1930s the big Italian pipe manufacturers steered toward the climax of their production. Legions of workers - the absolute majority being women - produced tenthousands of pipes day by day. Also in Cassano Magnago, the businesses had developed so well that in 1934 considerable expansions of the factory were necessary. Important buyers, headed by the USA, were Belgium, the Netherlands, Sweden, Denmark, Austria, Germany, Hungary and even England. During World War II the fabrication went on, though at restricted terms. But the gigantic economic and social difficulties in destitute post-war Italy enforced an almost two-year standstill. Extremely laboriously, above all by compensation businesses with the USA, the production could be re-established until ca. 1950. However, it reached never again the circumference of the pre-war years.
Since 1970 Carlo Ceresa, a son of Enrico, is heading the Fabbrica Pipe di Carlo Ceresa & C. as it is currently named. In 2004 there were eight employees working in the production. Sales are running so well that Ceresa today must make use of wherewith they themselves once began: subcontractors! The principal customer are still the USA where Cassano pipes are regarded as an estimable Italian series pipe, featuring very good characteristics already for less than 100 dollars.
Especially nice look the pipes of the "Mare" line: Deep sandblasting in untreated nature color with pearl colored Acrylic bits.
Cassano Pipe Fabbrica Pipe SAS di Carlo Ceresa & C. Via Don Giuseppe Castiglioni No. 3 IT - 21012 Cassano Magnano (Varese / Lombardia) Tel.: 0331 201134 Fax: 0331 201134