During the 19th century, the passage of French troops through the province left numerous scars, both in our physical geography and in our emotional substrate. Evidence of this is left by the plaque located inside the Calvari hermitage, whose text in Valencian remembers the names of the 29 residents of Sant Joan d’Alacant, murdered by Napoleonic troops on April 21, 1812, during the War of the Independence. That episode also ended with the looting of the building and the loss of highly valuable images.
But the hermitage also suffered its ordeal during the Spanish Civil War. In 1936 it was attacked, its doors were burned and the boxes of the Stations of the Cross disappeared. Fortunately, before the attack, the owners of the hermitage rescued the images from inside, taking them to a safe place in the cemetery. Once the war ended, the hermitage was repaired and the coffers were rebuilt.
In the 1960s the hermitage went through a period of abandonment that culminated in a severe deterioration of the property and the disappearance of the caskets of the Stations of the Cross, but finally in 2007 the city council proceeded to restore it. During those works, a lead projectile dating from the War of Independence was found. Finally the hermitage was inaugurated in 2009. In 2012, the plaque was placed in memory of the Santjoaners murdered by Napoleonic troops in 1812.
The monumental complex present on Mount Calvari, with its hermitages, cisterns, irrigation ponds, its views of the Alicante geographical landmarks, the cemetery and the defense tower, constitutes one of the most important attractions of Sant Joan d’Alacant .