Bergamo is located in Lombardia 40 km northeast of Milan, pop: 120,000. The foothills of the Alps begin just north of the town. Bergamo occupies the site of the ancient Bergomum, founded as a settlement of the Celtic tribe of Cenomani. In 49 BC it became a Roman municipality, containing 10,000 inhabitants at its peak. An important hub on the military road between Friuli and Raetia, it was destroyed by Attila in the 5th century. From the 6th century on, it was the seat of one of the most important duchies of northern Italy, together with Brescia, Trento, and Cividale del Friuli. After the conquest of the Lombard Kingdom by Charlemagne, it became the seat of a county under one Auteramus. In 1428 it fell under the control of the Venetian Republic, remaining part of it until 1797. In 1815, it was assigned to the Austrian Empire. Giuseppe Garibaldi freed it in 1859 during the Second Italian War of Independence, when it became part of the Kingdom of Italy. During the 20th century Bergamo became one of Italy’s most industrialized cities.
As of 2010, 85% of the population was Italian. The largest immigrant groups come from other European nations (mostly Romania and Ukraine): 4.89%, Americas (mostly from Bolivia): 4.61%, sub-Saharan Africa: 1.59%, North Africa: 1.53%. Currently 1/5 of babies born in Bergamo has at least one foreign parent.