Departments of France
In the administrative divisions of France, the department is one of the three levels of government below the national level, between the administrative regions and the commune. Ninety-six departments are in metropolitan France, five are overseas departments, which are classified as regions. Departments are further subdivided into 334 arrondissements, themselves divided into cantons; each department is administered by an elected body called a departmental council. From 1800 to April 2015, these were called general councils; each council has a president. Their main areas of responsibility include the management of a number of social and welfare allowances, of junior high school buildings and technical staff, local roads and school and rural buses, a contribution to municipal infrastructures. Local services of the state administration are traditionally organised at departmental level, where the prefect represents the government; the departments were created in 1790 as a rational replacement of Ancien Régime provinces with a view to strengthen national unity.
All of them were named after physical geographical features, rather than after historical or cultural territories which could have their own loyalties. The division of France into departments was a project identified with the French revolutionary leader the Abbé Sieyès, although it had been discussed and written about by many politicians and thinkers; the earliest known suggestion of it is from 1764 in the writings of d'Argenson. They have inspired similar divisions in some of them former French colonies. Most French departments are assigned a two-digit number, the "Official Geographical Code", allocated by the Institut national de la statistique et des études économiques. Overseas departments have a three-digit number; the number is used, for example, in the postal code, was until used for all vehicle registration plates. While residents use the numbers to refer to their own department or a neighbouring one, more distant departments are referred to by their names, as few people know the numbers of all the departments.
For example, inhabitants of Loiret might refer to their department as "the 45". In 2014, President François Hollande proposed to abolish departmental councils by 2020, which would have maintained the departments as administrative divisions, to transfer their powers to other levels of governance; this reform project has since been abandoned. The first French territorial departments were proposed in 1665 by Marc-René d'Argenson to serve as administrative areas purely for the Ponts et Chaussées infrastructure administration. Before the French Revolution, France gained territory through the annexation of a mosaic of independent entities. By the close of the Ancien Régime, it was organised into provinces. During the period of the Revolution, these were dissolved in order to weaken old loyalties; the modern departments, as all-purpose units of the government, were created on 4 March 1790 by the National Constituent Assembly to replace the provinces with what the Assembly deemed a more rational structure.
Their boundaries served two purposes: Boundaries were chosen to break up France's historical regions in an attempt to erase cultural differences and build a more homogeneous nation. Boundaries were set so that every settlement in the country was within a day's ride of the capital of a department; this was a security measure, intended to keep the entire national territory under close control. This measure was directly inspired by the Great Terror, during which the government had lost control of many rural areas far from any centre of government; the old nomenclature was avoided in naming the new departments. Most were named after other physical features. Paris was in the department of Seine. Savoy became the department of Mont-Blanc; the number of departments 83, had been increased to 130 by 1809 with the territorial gains of the Republic and of the First French Empire. Following Napoleon's defeats in 1814–1815, the Congress of Vienna returned France to its pre-war size and the number of departments was reduced to 86.
In 1860, France acquired the County of Nice and Savoy, which led to the creation of three new departments. Two were added from the new Savoyard territory, while the department of Alpes-Maritimes was created from Nice and a portion of the Var department; the 89 departments were given numbers based on the alphabetical order of their names. The department of Bas-Rhin and parts of Meurthe, Moselle and Haut-Rhin were ceded to the German Empire in 1871, following France's defeat in the Franco-Prussian War. A small part of Haut-Rhin became known as the Territoire de Belfort; when France regained the ceded departments after World War I, the Territoire de Belfort was not re-integrated into Haut-Rhin. In 1922, it became France's 90th department; the Lorraine departments were not changed back to their original boundaries, a new Moselle department was created in the regaine
Benfeld is a commune in the Bas-Rhin department in Grand Est in northeastern France. It is situated on the river Ill. In the nearby hamlet Ehl there is an archaeological site with the remains of the Gallo-Roman city Ellelum or Helvetum; the handsome 1846 synagogue survived the Nazi occupation. Communes of the Bas-Rhin department INSEE commune file
Asswiller is a French commune in the Bas-Rhin department in the Grand Est region of north-eastern France. The inhabitants of the commune are known as Asswilleroises; the commune has been awarded one flower by the National Council of Towns and Villages in Bloom in the Competition of cities and villages in Bloom. Asswiller is in the Northern Vosges Regional Natural Park some 27 km south-east of Sarralbe and 38 km south-west of Bitche. Access to the commune is by the D9 road from Durstel in the north-west passing through the heart of the commune and the village and continuing south-east to Petersbach; the D309 road goes south-west from the village to Drulingen. There is a large forest in the west with strips of forest along the borders with the remainder of the commune farmland; the Isch forms the south-western boundary of the commune as it flows west to join the Sarre west of Wolfskirchen. The Ottwillergraben forms the eastern border of the commune as it flows north to join the Eichel at Tieffenbach.
718: Asco vilare 1793: Asveiller 1801: AsswilerIn German the commune name is Aßweiler. Asswiller was a small lordship dependent on the Counts of La Petite-Pierre; when the Count palatine of Bavaria, Georg Johann I of Bavaria, took possession of the county, he granted Asswiller as a hereditary fief to the Dalheim family, who were soon succeeded by the Steinkallenfels family: senior officials of the palatine counts. These Protestant lords introduced the Reformation and remained in Asswiller from the 16th century to 1819. In 1789 Asswiller belonged to the Lord of Carbiston who had acquired it in 1771 by marriage with the heiress of the Steincallenfels family. After the French Revolution Asswiller was attached to France in 1793 by decree of the National Convention which overrode the rights of princes holding possessions. List of Successive Mayors In 2010 the commune had 285 inhabitants; the evolution of the number of inhabitants is known from the population censuses conducted in the commune since 1793.
From the 21st century, a census of communes with fewer than 10,000 inhabitants is held every five years, unlike larger towns that have a sample survey every year. Population change Sources: Ldh/EHESS/Cassini until 1962, INSEE database from 1968 Many buildings and structures in Asswiller are registered as historical monuments: A Farmhouse at 2 Rue du Cimetière A Chateau at 6 Rue de Drulingen The Town Hall/School at 10 Rue de Durstel A Farmhouse at 18 Rue de Durstel A Courthouse at 2 Rue de Durstel A Farmhouse at 26 Rue de Durstel A Farmhouse at 5 Rue de Durstel A Farmhouse at 5 Bis Rue de Durstel A Farmhouse at 14 Rue de Petersbach A Farmhouse at 8 Rue de Petersbach A Mill called Jaegermuhle Several religious buildings and structures are registered as historical monuments: A Cemetery at Rue du Cimetière A Protestant Church at Rue de Durstel A Protestant Presbytery at 4 Rue de Durstel A Lutheran Church at Rue de l'Eglise The Cemetery contains two items that are registered as historical objects: The Rauscher family tomb 3 SculpturesThe Lutheran Church contains two items that are registered as historical objects: The Furniture in the church The Organ Communes of the Bas-Rhin department Asswiller on the old IGN website Asswiller on Lion1906 Asweiller on the 1750 Cassini Map Asswiller on the INSEE website INSEE
Belmont is a commune in the Bas-Rhin department in Grand Est in northeastern France. Communes of the Bas-Rhin department INSEE commune file
Aschbach is a French commune in the Bas-Rhin department in the Grand Est region of north-eastern France. The inhabitants of the commune are known as Aschbachoises. Aschbach is located some 13 km south by south-east of Wissembourg and 8 km east of Soultz-sous-Forêts. Access to the commune is by the D245 road from Stundwiller in the south passing through the village and continuing north to Seebach. With exception of a small band of forest on the western border the commune is farmland; the Seebach river forms the eastern border of the commune as it flows south to join the Seltzbach at Buhl. An unnamed stream rises in the centre of the commune and flows south-east through the village to join the Seebach on the south-eastern border. In the 14th century Aschbach was the property of the Diocese of Speyer. Under the Ancien Régime Aschbach and Oberroedern formed the Superior Court with their church at Stundwiller; these three villages were merged in 1974 but Aschbach was separated again in 1988. According to the cadastral plan of 1839 there were buildings built close together and other places which were marshlands.
The school was built in 1833, an oratory at a place called Kreutzfeld dates to 1864, the church was built in 1871. The village suffered terrible damage in the Second World War and reconstruction gave the village a new look with a larger and more open built-up area; the presbytery was built in 1950. List of Successive Mayors In 2010 the commune had 667 inhabitants; the evolution of the number of inhabitants is known from the population censuses conducted in the commune since 1793. From the 21st century, a census of communes with fewer than 10,000 inhabitants is held every five years, unlike larger towns that have a sample survey every year. Population change Sources: Ldh/EHESS/Cassini until 1962, INSEE database from 1968 Aschbach has four registrations as historical monuments; these are: Parish Church of the Immaculate Conception Farmhouse at 19 Grand Rue House and Farms The Village The Church of the Immaculate Conception has many items which are registered as historical objects. These are: 2 Monstrances Monstrance Cross: Christ on the cross Painting: Saint Joseph with the child Jesus 10 Statues of Saints Pulpit, 2 Confessionals, Baptismal fonts 3 Altars, 3 Tabernacles, 3 Retables, church stall, half-height panelling Furniture in the Church Wayside cross: Christ on the cross at Hohlacker Inside the Church Communes of the Bas-Rhin department Aschbach, Bas-Rhin on Lion1906 Aschbach on the National Geographical Institute website Aschbach on Google Maps Aschbach on Géoportail, National Geographic Institute website Asbach on the 1750 Cassini Map Aschbach on the INSEE website INSEE
Alsace Grand Cru AOC
Alsace Grand Cru is an Appellation d'Origine Contrôlée for wines made in specific parcels of the Alsace wine region of France. The Grand Cru AOC was recognized in 1975 by the INAO with subsequent expansion in 1983, 1992 and 2007; the wines come from selected sites in the Alsace AOC region, located at altitudes between 200 m and 300 m. To qualify for Grand Cru status, the wine must first meet the AOC Alsace-rules and other strict requirements. Thus, the yield of the vineyards has to be 55 hectoliter per hectare or less, the wine has to come from a single named vineyard of Grand Cru status, the name of the vineyard must be listed on the label; as of 2011, 51 lieux-dits are listed as Grand Cru, the latest addition being Kaefferkopf of Ammerschwihr in January 2007. In Alsace, the concept of cru came early. In 613, the king-to-be Dagobert gave vines on the Steinklotz to the abbey of Haslach. In Rouffach in 762, Archbishop of Strasbourg, founded the abbey of Ettenheim and made his income up of the vines of the Vorbourg.
In Bennwihr in 777, the missi dominici passing through Alsace exposed in their report to Charlemagne the quality of Beno Villare wines which vines showed off on the Marckrain. In Sigolsheim, a charter of 783 notified that the Sigoltesberg vineyard was the common property of the nearby lords and monasteries. In Kintzheim in the 9th century, the Benedictine abbots of Ebersmunster owned vines on the Praelatenberg; this lieu-dit is attested since 823. In Dahlenheim and Scharrachbergheim, a charter pointed for the first time to the vineyard of the Engelberg in 884. In Wintzenheim in the 9th century, a gift from the abbey of Murbach cited the Hengst for the first time; the lords of Hohlandsbourg and the bailiff of Kayserberg shared its feodal rignts until the French Revolution. Between 1000 and Renaissance, each other Alsacian lieux-dits has been owned or a fief of the nobility or the clergy; the wealth or the alsacian cartularies and charter-binders would only be erudites treat if it hadn't formed the historical basis of the delimitation of the Alsace grands crus lieux-dits.
The status of Alsace wine region is a case apart within the French wine regions. After 1919's Treaty of Versailles and Alsace's return into France, German law remained force in this Reichsland as local law, introduced as soon as 1919 and legalized in 1924; this situation held up the recognition of Alsace wines. After the ordonnance of 1945 defining the designation of origin of Alsacian wines came in 1962 the decree relating to the use of such designations: the appellation d'origine contrôlée Alsace was born. Neither the ordonnance nor the decree contained a word about geographical designations or an allusion to crus; the situation began to evolve with a decree in 1975 which created the designation "alsace grand cru". Its first article makes clear. A decree in 1983 designated 25 lieux-dits to join the grands crus d'Alsace. In 1985, the INAO accepted a new folder to increase the alsace grands crus list; the same year, a decree added 25 new names. Meanwhile, these texts have been modified. In 1984 were vendange tardive and sélection de grains nobles introduced.
Alsace grands crus are produced in north-eastern France, in the region Alsace, on the territory of 47 communes, from Marlenheim at northern end, westward from Strasbourg, to Thann at southern end, westward from Mulhouse. Alsace plain occupies the south part of the Upper Rhine Plain, which formed from a collapse during the Oligocene and is followed since the Miocene by the river Rhine; the vineyard stays on the lower slopes of the Vosges Mountains, on the fault zone of the graben, covered by alluvial fans of the many rivers and creeks flowing from the nearby heights. This explains the variety of the subsurface materials and their succession forming a true mosaic: limestones, shales, gneiss or sandstones; the upper part of the slopes of the subvosgian hills consists of old rocks: plutons and metamorphic rocks like granite, gneiss or slate. Vine-planted parcels climb up to 478 m height; the lower part of the slopes consists of layers of limestones or marls covered by loess where the slope is rather smooth.
Endly, the plain consists of a thick layer of alluvium deposited by the Rhine. This zone is more fertile than the two previous with an important aquifer close to the surface: the Upper Rhine aquifer; such differences between a place and another allow each Grand Cru to benefit from a particular terroir more differentiated by the climate. On the western side, the Vosges Mountains shield the Alsacian vineyards from rain. Dominating western winds loose their moisture on the eastern side of the Vosges and arrive as foehn winds into the Alsace plain; the precipitation mean in Alsace is the least of all French vineyards and Colmar one of the dryest towns of France. The climate is more temperated than expected at this latitude: the annual mean temperature is about 1.5 °C higher. The climate is semi-continental and dry with hot springs and dry summers, long autumns and cold winters; each of the Grands Crus benefits from a microclimate different from place to place. As of 2011, all wines are white and can be produced from the noble Alsace varieties: Riesling, Pinot gris and Gewürztraminer grapes.
In 2006 Zotzenberg became the first Grand Cru vineyard that could conta
Altorf is a French commune in the Bas-Rhin department in the Grand Est region of northeastern France. The inhabitants of the commune are known as Altorfois or AltorfoisesThe commune has been awarded one flower by the National Council of Towns and Villages in Bloom in the Competition of cities and villages in Bloom. A part of the Canton of Molsheim and its arrondissement, Altorf is located about 15 kilometres west of Strasbourg; the A352 National Highway runs from east to west across the southern portion of the commune but has no exit. Access to the commune is by road D392 which runs parallel but north of the highway and connects with Highway exit 8 to the east of the commune and west to Dorlisheim. Another access road is the D127 which comes from Jaegerhof just over the northern border south to the village continuing south to Griesheim-pres-Molsheim. There are a number of small country roads covering the commune. Most of the commune is farmland with some forests in the north-eastern portion; the Bras de la Bruches flows through the commune from west to east, through the village east to join the Muelbach and flows east under the name Altorfer Arm until it joins La Bruche river north of Eintzheim Airport.
In the north-east another waterway forms the north-eastern border of the commune. The only other hamlet in the commune is that of Forstoff north-east of Altorf village, it was known as Altum Coenobium in 787. The origin of the commune name Altorf is from the form Alt-dorf; the old spelling was still visible before the Second World War. However the spelling Altorf through Altorfium / Atorfium it is more to come from the Latin root altum. Climate in this area has mild differences between highs and lows, there is adequate rainfall year-round; the Köppen Climate Classification subtype for this climate is "Cfb". Altorf is located on the ancient Roman via romana or Bergstrasse which connected Strasbourg to the strategic pass of Donon; the funerary steles of the 3rd century attest to a Roman presence. The village's history became intertwined with that of its Benedictine abbey, founded in 960 by Hugues III of Eguisheim called l'Enroue, Count of Nordgau and his wife Countess Hewilde, his father, Count Eberhard IV was buried in the abbey in 972, sealing the connection between the family and Altorf.
The abbey had was built following a cenobite community of monks called the Altum Coenobium, reported in 787, where the name of the abbey and village came from. Pope Saint Leo IX, son of the powerful empire family of Eguisheim-Dabo came to Altorf in 1049 to honor his ancestors, he endowed it with relics. The reliquary in oriental style represents a bust in polychrome wood and with the words notitia altorfensis is one of the major parts of the Abbey. Cyriac of Malaga, who had cured epilepsy of the daughter of the Emperor Diocletian in the 4th century, became the patron saint of the village and he is celebrated on 8 August. Altorf was a place of pilgrimage for epileptics and people possessed with demons with many healings reported in the abbey archives in the 13th century; the chapel was consecrated in 974, under the leadership of Maïeul, Bishop of Cluny, Erchembald, Bishop of Strasbourg. As with the abbeys of Steige and Marmoutier, the Altorf Abbey was successful because of its many dependencies.
The churches of Barembach and Grendelbruch, although remote, were incorporated into the abbey by a papal bull of 1192 from Pope Celestin III which involved in particular the attachment of tithes. In particular its properties along the right bank of the Bruche extending from the course of the Rothaine into the plain of Alsace were attached to the bishopric of Strasbourg in 1226, extinguishing the line of Eguisheim. In addition, the emperors gave the abbey the right to issue currency, from the Ottonian revival at the end of the 10th century; the Holy Roman Emperor Frederick Barbarossa explicitly recognized this right with a charter in 1153. In the 13th century however, this privilege was transferred to Dachstein Molsheim; the cultural influence of the abbey led to the establishment of a university, subsequently transferred to Molsheim in the Carthusian heartland there to be moved aside to form the University of Strasbourg. Economic and cultural power caused the shedding blood in Altorf in 1262 when the village and monastery were burned by the Strasbourgers who were in revolt against Bishop Walter de Geroldseck.
In 1525 there was the peasant revolt. A century during the Thirty Years War which included Swedish and French forces. In 1606, Altorf Abbey joined the Union of Bursfeld which included a hundred Benedictine monasteries and was in 1624 formally called the Benedictine Congregation of Strasbourg; the Peasants' epic struggle, which had originated from the Holy Roman Empire in 1524, crystallized in Lower Alsace around Altorf and Boersch. The leaders of the movement were Erasmus Gerber and Georg Ittel from Molsheim and Rosheim, established themselves with a group of 1500 men at their headquarters in Altorf, from where the contagion spread throughout the province in a week with their troops raiding monasteries and mistreating Jews. Father Nartz reported these events in his mo