The ancient fortress, as it appears today, was rebuilt in the mid-sixteenth century but is of much older origins: the first document in which the castle of Sestola is named is the Diploma of Astolfo of 753 AD, with which the king of the Lombards donated Castrum Sextulae (the current Sestola) and the territories adjacent to the Abbey of Nonantola, then founded by Sant’Anselmo. In the thirteenth century it was the scene of clashes and sieges between Modena and Bologna, Sestola was already a small autonomous municipality. From 1337, thanks to its central and easily defensible position, the fortress was the seat of the governor of Frignano appointed by the Este family.
At the decline of the capital of Frignano, in the nineteenth century, the castle was transformed into a penitentiary, which remained in operation until 1866.
At the end of the 20th century the fortress underwent a further transformation by hosting a meteorological observatory and a summer institute for the care of children