Because of its location between Austria and Tyrol, and later Italy and Feltre, Castel Ivano, through its millennium old history, stood many an event and several landlords.
The core of the Castle was a defence manor built by the Lombards (VI-VIII sec a.C.) during the great barbarian invasions after the fall of the Western Roman Empire. This occurred approx. in 590 a.C., when the Lombards built new fortresses in Valsugana – next to the military street called Claudia Augusta Altinate – to protect themselves from the attacks by the Fancs and Allemans.
The Lombards left Italy in 774 a.C. and since then the Valsugana went under the Francs and their king Charle Magne, the future Emperor of the Sacred Roman Empire. Under the kingdom of Berengarius, great grandson of Charles Magne, the valley was invaded by the Hungarians and this led to a further development of the existing defence fortresses. The size of the manor was therefore extended.
In 1027, by grant and grace of the Emperor Conrad II the Salian to the Bishop of Feltre who ruled over the territory of the lower Valsugana, Castel Ivano was placed under Venetian jurisdiction.
The first historical record about the Castle dates back to 1187 and mention is made a Lord called Ivano.
In 1228, the ruling by the Bishops and Counts of Feltre was over, Castel Ivano and lower Valsugana became the prey, for almost 200 years, of fights between a number of Lords, such as Ezzelino da Romano, the da Caminos, the Scaligeris from Verona, the Carraresis, and Gian Galeazzo Visconti. It was approximately 1375, under the Carraresis, the coat of arms of the House – four wheels and two bars of a cart – was put on the tower of Castel Ivano.
In 1413, the lower stretch of the Valsugana was annexed to the County of Tyrol and became part of the Austrian House of Augsburg, and therefore Castel Ivano went under their ruling. Castel Ivano first went under the ruling of the Captains of Faith, and later by the Tyrolian family of the Wolkenstein-Trostburg that managed the feud as a pawn for the money that was lent to the throne by them until 1750, when Empress Marie Therese of Austria granted in perpetuity the feud to the family.
Catel Ivano was ruled by a number of Captains among whom Giorgio Pucler, killed by the local farmers during some riots, the so-called “war of the farmers” that began in 1525 in Tyrol and in the region of Trient against the aristocrats in an attempt by the farmers to free themselves from fuedal laws. A few years before, the Emperor Maximilian I of Augsburg visited Castel Ivano when traveling through the Valsugana during the political riots caused by the invasions from the Venitians (1504). He went to trient where he proclaimed himself Elected Roman Emperor on February 4, 1508.
When the last Wolkenstein, Count Antonio, died in 1913. In the aftermath of the First World War, in 1923, his heirs sold the manor, which was in very bad conditions, to Count Wolkenstein’s administrator, Franz Staudacher from Bruneck, who used to live with his family in the manor since 1901. Franz Staudacher rebuilt the manor, restored it as well as its gardens and land.
His children, and more specifically world renown surgeon Vittorio Staudacher, all worked to fully restore Castel Ivano to bring it back to its past splendour.
His grandchildren, Ivana and Carlo, the present landlords of the Castle, are continuing with the huge efforts to preserve and improve it.