Fort de Mutzig
The Fort de Mutzig known as Feste Kaiser Wilhelm II, is located near the town of Mutzig, in the Bas-Rhin department of France. It is one of the fortifications built by Germany at the end of the 19th century to defend Strasbourg, it was the first new fortification built in what was German territory after the invention of high explosives, which rendered earlier masonry fortifications obsolete. Fort de Mutzig was part of a network of forts surrounding Strasbourg and Metz, built by the Germans after the end of the Franco-Prussian War. Earlier forts built from 1872 to 1880 used masonry, which did not resist high explosives, or concrete; the Mutzig works were planned as a demonstration of new technology. The western fort, built in 1895, was built of concrete from the beginning, while the 1893 eastern fort, built in masonry, was reinforced and covered in concrete. Armored observation points and 150mm howitzer turrets were installed, while Mutzig was the first German fort with its own electricity generating plant.
It was equipped with a radio link to Strasbourg, infantry shelters and underground living quarters. Costs were estimated at 15 million marks; the fortifications comprise three main portions. The newest section, the place used for tours, is located in the northwestern fort; the 1895 west fort is located somewhat to the south, the eastern fort about one kilometer to the east of the western fort. Together they comprise a Feste, or fortification, a concept, developed in the construction of the French Maginot Line fortifications. In 1914, the 254-hectare fort comprised 50 buildings, with an underground space of 40,000 square meters. With 22 turrets equipped with 10 cm and 15 cm howitzers at a maximum rate of fire of 6.5 tons of shells per minute, Mutzig was one of the strongest forts in Europe. 8,000 troops of the German army manned the defenses of Strasbourg at the time. Forces were disposed in the ring of forts around Strasbourg, as well as the Vosges mountains for defense against French forces around Belfort.
The fort's armament included: 8 x 150 mm howitzers in turrets with a range of 8,500 metres 14 x 105 mm guns in turrets, of two models, with a range of up to 13,000 metres 8 x 57 mm guns in mobile turrets 12 x 53 mm guns in embrasures 12 armored observation points, two with periscopes, 7 infantry observation positionsThree concrete barracks for the garrison and 18 concrete shelters for infantry were provided, along with four wells and other support facilities distributed around the fortification. The province of Lorraine had been captured during the Franco-Prussian War, prompting an arms race in the form of fixed fortifications on the parts of France and Germany; the fortress saw no significant fighting during the First World War, was handed over intact to the French Army after the Armistice of 1918, with the exception of about half of its 105 mm guns, salvaged in 1917 by the Germans. The French Army designated Mutzig a rear defense of the Rhine frontier. During the Second World War the fortress was occupied for a time by German artillery and infantry regiments but on June 13, 1940 forces were ordered to evacuate the area and all the guns were decommissioned.
Despite this, it was bombed by the German Luftwaffe when it was suspected that French troops had taken possession. However, part of the Wehrmacht's 215th Infantry Division was in fact in the fortress at the time and more than 70 German soldiers were killed in the Stuka attack. In November 1944 the US Third Infantry Division took the fortress, thinly occupied by German forces who were forced to surrender after a short time for want of ordnance and reinforcements. After the Second World War the fortress was used by the French Army for exercises up until the 1960s when it was abandoned but remained in the possession of the military; as the fortress never saw substantial military action, it remains one of the best preserved pre-World War I sites in existence. This enormous site, which retains all its original equipment, has been under a process of restoration by a joint German–French group since 1984 and in 1995 a Museum was opened to the public together with some restored areas of the site. Local historical reenactment groups make use of the fortress.
Since 2014 the fortress has been known by its original name, the Kaiser Wilhelm II fortress. This article incorporates text translated from the corresponding German Wikipedia article as of February 9, 2010. Fort de Mutzig site Fort de Mutzig at Chemins de mémoire Fort Mutzig at Traces of War
Communes of France
The commune is a level of administrative division in the French Republic. French communes are analogous to civil townships and incorporated municipalities in the United States and Canada, Gemeinden in Germany, comuni in Italy or ayuntamiento in Spain; the United Kingdom has no exact equivalent, as communes resemble districts in urban areas, but are closer to parishes in rural areas where districts are much larger. Communes are based on historical geographic communities or villages and are vested with significant powers to manage the populations and land of the geographic area covered; the communes are the fourth-level administrative divisions of France. Communes vary in size and area, from large sprawling cities with millions of inhabitants like Paris, to small hamlets with only a handful of inhabitants. Communes are based on pre-existing villages and facilitate local governance. All communes have names, but not all named geographic areas or groups of people residing together are communes, the difference residing in the lack of administrative powers.
Except for the municipal arrondissements of its largest cities, the communes are the lowest level of administrative division in France and are governed by elected officials with extensive autonomous powers to implement national policy. A commune is city, or other municipality. "Commune" in English has a historical bias, implies an association with socialist political movements or philosophies, collectivist lifestyles, or particular history. There is nothing intrinsically different between commune in French; the French word commune appeared in the 12th century, from Medieval Latin communia, for a large gathering of people sharing a common life. As of January 2015, there were 36,681 communes in France, 36,552 of them in metropolitan France and 129 of them overseas; this is a higher total than that of any other European country, because French communes still reflect the division of France into villages or parishes at the time of the French Revolution. The whole territory of the French Republic is divided into communes.
This is unlike some other countries, such as the United States, where unincorporated areas directly governed by a county or a higher authority can be found. There are only a few exceptions: COM of Saint-Martin, it was a commune inside the Guadeloupe région. The commune structure was abolished when Saint-Martin became an overseas collectivity on 22 February 2007. COM of Wallis and Futuna, which still is divided according to the three traditional chiefdoms. COM of Saint Barthélemy, it was a commune inside the Guadeloupe region. The commune structure was abolished when Saint-Barthélemy became an overseas collectivity on 22 February 2007. Furthermore, two regions without permanent habitation have no communes: TOM of the French Southern and Antarctic Lands Clipperton Island in the Pacific Ocean In metropolitan France, the average area of a commune in 2004 was 14.88 square kilometres. The median area of metropolitan France's communes at the 1999 census was smaller, at 10.73 square kilometres. The median area is a better measure of the area of a typical French commune.
This median area is smaller than that of most European countries. In Italy, the median area of communes is 22 km2. Switzerland and the Länder of Rhineland-Palatinate, Schleswig-Holstein, Thuringia in Germany were the only places in Europe where the communes had a smaller median area than in France; the communes of France's overseas départements such as Réunion and French Guiana are large by French standards. They group into the same commune several villages or towns with sizeable distances among them. In Réunion, demographic expansion and sprawling urbanization have resulted in the administrative splitting of some communes; the median population of metropolitan France's communes at the 1999 census was 380 inhabitants. Again this is a small number, here France stands apart in Europe, with the lowest communes' median population of all the European countries; this small median population of French communes can be compared with Italy, where the median population of communes in 2001 was 2,343 inhabitants, Belgium, or Spain.
The median population given here should not hide the fact that there are pronounced differences in size between French communes. As mentioned in the introduction, a commune can be a city of 2 million inhabitants such as Paris, a town of 10,000 inhabitants, or just a hamlet of 10 inhabitants. What the median population tells us is that the vast majority of the French communes only have a few hundred inhabitants. In metropolitan France just over 50 percent of the 36,683 communes have fewer than 500 inhabitants a
Artolsheim is a commune in the Bas-Rhin department in Alsace in northeastern France. Artolsheim has the distinction of being further from the sea than any other place in France; the Gulf of Genoa and the mouth of the River Scheldt are both 430 kilometres away. Employment opportunities in the village are limited; the traditional economic focus of the region is Sélestat some fifteen kilometres to the west. The river crossing of Marckolsheim with its associated locks and hydro-electric power station offer employment opportunities: many low-paid seasonal jobs are provided by the Europa-Park'theme park'. Communes of the Bas-Rhin department INSEE commune file
Albé is a commune in the Bas Rhin département in Alsace in north-eastern France. It is located 2 km northeast of Villé, on the left bank of the river Giessen close to the valley of Erlenbach, from which it derives its name. To the North and West it is bounded by mountains leading to the communes of Breitenbach. To the East is the peak of Ungersberg. Numerous streams flow from this mounting and the buttresses of the Champ du Feu to the north, which merge to form the brook of the Erlenberg; this river flowed down the main street of the village, but has now been covered. The village is at 300 m altitude; until 1867 the village was known by its German name Erlenbach. The name Albé was formally adopted in 1919. Under Louis XIV it was awarded a coat of arms emblazoned "Azure, three chevrons Argent"; the Azure suggests the river and the three chevrons a narrow boxed valley. The village is first mentioned in 1303 as a possession of the Habsburg Empire. A growth in the population, as a result of an expansion in farming and forestry led to the demands by the abbot of Honcourt for the construction of a church, begun by 1342.
From the 13th to the 15th century, the area was occupied by various armies loyal to the German Emperor or the Pope. The nearby camp of Armagnacs, stationed in Châtenois, may have plundered Albé and other villages in the region. During the Easter of 1525, the peasantry of Albé took part in a revolt and the Abbeys of Honcourt and Baumgarten were destroyed; the revolt was crushed by troops from Lorraine on 20 May 1525, Albé was named by the Lord of Ensisheim as among those responsible for the sacking of the abbeys, liable for reprisal. Fire spread through the village in 1575 resulting in the destruction of the church; the town suffered again during the Thirty Years War. After attempting to resist Swedish troops, the town was laid waste. After the war, the town grew again and there was an influx of people from many different backgrounds, who brought with them their architectural traditions. A century of peace brought prosperity based again on viticulture, during the 18th century many grand lintel frame houses were built.
The French revolution brought a mixture of fear and hope, the town preserves a tree of freedom, a lime planted in 1795 in the village square. The church had been enlarged in 1752, by 1802 the village had a full-time vicar and obtained the status of parish. At the end of the 19th century the farmland was becoming exhausted and the spread of phylloxera gravely affected the town and the population shrank. Coal mines are operating in the village; the town is principally known for its wine, it is the only town in the valley to produce its own vin d'Alsace. The vineyards are on sunny slopes; the vineyards now cover about 15 hectares, this area is expected to increase as hillsides are improved for the purpose. Most of the grapes are processed locally; the forest surrounding the town is held in common, though some is managed for chestnuts and fuel. There is little industry in Albé, cottage industries such as weaving are not significant; however the production of brandy has taken place on a commercial scale.
The Maison du Val de Villé is a local museum, housed in the former mairie. Communes of the Bas-Rhin department INSEE commune file
Bas-Rhin is a department in Alsace, a part of the Grand Est super-region of France. The name means "Lower Rhine", geographically speaking it belongs to the Upper Rhine region, it is the more populous and densely populated of the two departments of the traditional Alsace region, with 1,121,407 inhabitants in 2016. The prefecture and the General Council are based in Strasbourg; the INSEE and Post Code is 67. The inhabitants of the department are known as Bas-Rhinoises; the Rhine has always been of great historical and economic importance to the area, it forms the eastern border of Bas-Rhin. The area is home to some of the foothills of the Vosges Mountains. To the north of Bas-Rhin lies the Palatinate forest in the German State of Rhineland-Palatinate, the German State of Baden-Württemberg lies to the east. To the south lies the department of Haut-Rhin, the town of Colmar and southern Alsace, to the west the department of Moselle. On its south-western corner, Bas-Rhin joins the department of Vosges.
The Bas-Rhin has a continental-type climate, characterised by cold, dry winters and hot, stormy summers, due to the western protection provided by the Vosges. The average annual temperature is 7 °C on high ground; the annual maximum temperature is high. The average rainfall is 700 mm per year. Established according to data from the Infoclimat station at Strasbourg-Entzheim, over the period from 1961 to 1990; this is the last French department to have kept the term Bas meaning "Lower" in its name. Other departments using this prefix preferred to change their names - e.g.: Basses-Pyrenees in 1969 became Pyrénées-Atlantiques and Basses-Alpes in 1970 became the department of Alpes-de-Haute-Provence. The same phenomenon was observed for the inférieur departments such as Charente-Inférieure, Seine-Inférieure, Loire-Inférieure. Bas-Rhin is one of the original 83 departments created on 4 March 1790, during the French Revolution. On 14 January 1790 the National Constituent Assembly decreed: "- That Alsace be divided into two departments with Strasbourg and Colmar as their capitals.
In 1871 Bas-Rhin was annexed by Germany and became Bezirk Unterelsass in Reichsland Elsaß-Lothringen. Strasbourg, the chef lieu of Bas-Rhin is the official seat of the European Parliament as well as of the Council of Europe; the demography of Bas-Rhin is characterized by high density and high population growth since the 1950s. In January 2014 Bas-Rhin had 1,112,815 inhabitants and was 18th by population at the national level. In fifteen years, from 1999 to 2014, its population grew by more than 86,000 people, or about 5,800 people per year, but this variation is differentiated among the 517 communes. The population density of Bas-Rhin is 234 inhabitants per square kilometre in 2014, more than twice the average in France, 112 in 2009; the first census was conducted in 1801 and this count, renewed every five years from 1821, provides precise information on the evolution of population in the department. With 540,213 inhabitants in 1831, the department represented 1.66% of the total French population, 32,569,000 inhabitants.
From 1831 to 1866, the department gained 48,757 people, an increase of 0.26% on average per year compared to the national average of 0.48% over the same period. Demographic change between the Franco-Prussian War of 1870 and the First World War was higher than the national average. Over this period, the population increased by 100,532 inhabitants, an increase of 16.74%, compared to 10% nationally. The population increased by 9.23% between the two world wars from 1921 to 1936 compared to a national growth of 6.9%. Like other French departments, Bas-Rhin experienced a population boom after the Second World War, higher than the national level; the rate of population growth between 1946 and 2007 was 83.83%
Barembach 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 Barembachoises. Barembach is located in a valley perpendicular to the Bruche valley some 25 km west by south-west of Illkirch and 30 km north-west of Sélestat at 350 metres above sea level; the Barembach Forest covers most of the commune with several summits including Pépinière, Barraque des Bœufs, Ordon Saxe, Haut de la Brûlée. Access to the commune is by the D204 road from Grendelbruch in the north-east which passes through the north-eastern corner of the commune and continues to Schirmeck. Access to the village is by the D193; the D1420 from Muhlbach-sur-Bruche in the north-east passes along the northern border as it goes south-west to Fouday. The Barembach river rises in the south-east of the commune and flows north-west to join the Bruche just north-west of the commune; the Bornichon river rises in the south of the commune and flows north to join the Barembach at the village.
Barembach was destroyed in 1875 by a violent fire. After the reconstruction of the village immediately after the disaster, the economy first restarted with livestock and forestry. There were mills and sawmills producing galoshes which changed to weaving. An enterprise was set up by Camille Glaszmann; the company was continued by Mecatherm who extended the buildings. Shortly before Liberation the village was the headquarters of Marshal Jean de Lattre de Tassigny and served as a springboard to free the region. Barembach included part of the commune of Rothau on the north shore of the Rothaine. Barembach appears as the same on the 1790 version; the name Barembach originated from the German Bach meaning "stream" and Bär meaning "bear". List of Successive Mayors In 2010 the commune had 868 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 communes that have a sample survey every year.
Population change Sources: Ldh/EHESS/Cassini until 1962, INSEE database from 1968 The commune has many buildings and sites that are registered as historical monuments: Houses and Farmhouses The War Memorial at Route du Maréchal-De-Lattre-de-Tassigny A School at 14 Rue Principale The Town Hall / School at 15 Rue Principale The Town Hall / School contains several items that are registered as historical objects: A Heating Stove A Monumental Cross: Christ on the Cross and the Virgin and child The commune has several religious buildings and sites that are registered as historical monuments: The Barembach Cemetery on the D204 The Cemetery contains several items that are registered as historical objects: A Cemetery Cross Funeral Monuments The Schirmeck Cemetery at Rue du Douar The Cemetery contains many items that are registered as historical objects: Funeral Monuments Funeral Crosses A Monumental Cross A Monumental Cross: Christ on the Cross A Cemetery Cross: Christ on the Cross The Chartier Family Funeral Chapel on the D204 The Vogt Family Funeral Chapel at Rue du Douar The Church of Saint-Georges at Place de l'Eglise The Church contains several items that are registered as historical objects: A Chalice with Paten A Monstrance The Furniture in the Church The Church Organ A Presbytery at 16 Rue du Presbytère 3 Wayside Crosses are registered as historical objects.
Marshal Jean de Lattre de Tassigny had his headquarters in the village. The street from the cemetery to the church bears his name. There is a monument to him on this street near the church. Communes of the Bas-Rhin department "Barembach", in The Upper Valley of the Bruche, Alsace Heritage, General Inventory of Monuments and artistic riches of France, Éditions Lieux Dits, Lyon, 2005, p. 38-39, ISBN 978-2-914528-13-9 Barembach official website
Adamswiller 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 Adamswillerois or Adamswilleroises Adamswiller is located some 20 km north by north-west of Phalsbourg and 20 km south-east of Sarralbe; the D9 road from Mackwiller passes south through the western part of the commune on the way to Durstel in the south. The D182 runs off the D9 in the commune to Rexingen in the south-west. There is the D239 road from the village going north-east to join the D919 road just outside the commune; the commune is farmland with a little forest in the east. The commune is renowned for its pink sandstone from the north-east of the commune, approved for the restoration of historical monuments; the Eichel river forms the north-western border of the commune and the Marstbach forms the western border. The commune lies within the Northern Vosges Regional Natural Park; the commune was part of the County of La Petite-Pierre. Between Adamswiller and Mackwiller there have been found ancient tombs which have been given the name Totdenberg due to the heights on which they were found.
1281: Adelmanswiler 1793: Adamsweiller 1801: AdamswilerIn German: Adamsweiler. List of Successive Mayors of Adamswiller Population change Sources: Ldh/EHESS/Cassini until 1962, INSEE database from 1968 The commune has a number of buildings and structures that are registered as historical monuments: A Blacksmith's House at 27 Rue Principale The Town Hall / School at 44 Rue Principale A Farmhouse at 51 Rue Principale A Farmhouse at 55 Rue Principale The Au Cheval Noir restaurant at 59 Rue Principale The Weaver's House at 68 Rue Principale The Worker's House at 69 Rue Principale A Restaurant at 73 Rue Principale The Totenberg Tile Factory at RD 239 Houses and Farms A Public Bench at 12 Rue de la Gare is registered as an historical object. Other sites of interestThe Rauscher Quarry The Black Horse bistro The commune has several religious buildings and structures that are registered as historical monuments: A Monstrance Altar Bench at CD 239 A Lutheran Church at Rue Principale; the Church has several items which are registered as historical objects: The Furniture in the Church The Organ A Baptismal Ewer and Basin The Cemetery.
All movable items in the Cemetery are registered as historical objects. Communes of the Bas-Rhin department Communes of the Bas-Rhin department sorted by arrondissements and cantons Communities of Communes of the Bas-Rhin département Arrondissements of the Bas-Rhin département Cantons of the Bas-Rhin département Adamswiller on the old National Geographic Institute website Adamswiller on Lion1906 Adamswiller on Google Maps Adamswiller on Géoportail, National Geographic Institute website Adamsweiller on the 1750 Cassini Map Adamswiller on the INSEE website INSEE