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S+L in Rome: Vatican City State turns 80

Kris Dmytrenko

February 9, 2009
The three Lateran Accords signed by the Holy See and Italy, 1929
If you've seen the Salt + Light documentary Mission to the UN, you'll know that the Holy See and Italy signed the Lateran Accord 80 years ago (on February 11th, to be exact). The treaty settled the longstanding territorial dispute called the "Roman question", which began in 1870 when Italy overwhelmed the French garrison protecting Pope Pius IX. But the Church would not accept the resulting infringements on its sovereignty, so in 1929 a deal was struck granting the independent territory known as Vatican City State.
As part of this year's celebrations, the Vatican Museum opened a new exhibit on the history of the Vatican City State. Today press were invited to preview the exhibit before it opens on Thursday. Follow the jump for some highlights.
Table upon which the Lateran Accords were signed, 1929
Table upon which the Lateran Accords were signed, 1929
pope-pius-xis-1929-citroen-3.jpg
Citroën belonging to Pope Pius XI, 1929
Telephone of Pope Pius XI, 1930.jpg
Telephone of Pope Pius XI, 1930
plaster-cast-for-500-lira-vatican-coin-1929-2.jpg
Plaster cast for 500 lira Vatican coin, 1929