The Expedition of the Thousand is the Garibaldi’s expedition is that, by breaking down the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies, gave the final push to the unification of Italy. The first author of the enterprise, Francesco Crispi, proposed the expedition to Giuseppe Garibaldi, who agreed to lead it; but Garibaldi ask for a revolt in Sicily before the expedition. On April 4, 1860 there was an uprising in Palermo and this revolt, tamed in the city, continued to spread in the countryside. The Thousand (exactly 1084) departed from Quarto, near Genoa, May 5, 1860 on two steamers, the “Piedmont” and “Lombardy”. The Thousand landed at Marsala (May 11), them they arrived at Salemi where Garibaldi assumed the dictatorship in the name of Vittorio Emanuele II and he decreed the conscription. Defeated the Bourbon troops at Calatafimi, the partisans reached and occupied Palermo (May 27 to 29).
Meanwhile Cavour, after the first successes of Garibaldi, held off European diplomacy and sped up the delivery of assistance in Sicily. Palermo lost; King Francis II promised a constitution in Naples and he also promised the autonomy to Sicily; then he sent a diplomatic shipping to Turin for an alliance with Piedmont. But Garibaldi won again in Milazzo (July 20) and he drove out the Bourbons from almost the whole island; then he crossed the strait between the Island and the Peninsula, while the Bourbon army dissolved and Basilicata and Calabria rose up, and he stepped up to Naples where he entered on September 7. Cavour decided the royal intervention: the Piedmontese army invaded the Marche and Umbria and entered the Kingdom of Naples from the Abruzzi. The decisive battle took place on the Volturno. On October 26, Garibaldi met the king in Teano, then he went with him to Naples and he took there the power.
Letters from Garibaldi to Thousands’s priest: