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Nogent-sur-Marne

 

Nogent-sur-Marne is a French commune with 32,851 inhabitants (as of January 1, 2017) in the Val-de-Marne department in the Île-de-France region; it is the administrative seat of the arrondissement of Nogent-sur-Marne.

Nogent-sur-Marne is located in the Paris basin between Fontenay-sous-Bois in the north, Le Perreux-sur-Marne in the east and Joinville-le-Pont and Champigny-sur-Marne in the south, on the banks of the Marne and on the eastern edge of the Bois de Vincennes, thus borders directly on Paris. Until the end of the 19th century, the neighboring town of Le Perreux still belonged to the town of Nogent.

 

Landmarks

Baltard Pavilion by Victor Baltard, former poultry pavilion in the Paris halls, built in Nogent in 1977
Saint Saturnin church from the 12th century
Hôtel des Coignard, built in the 17th century

 

History

Middle Ages
From its position on the edge of a river, the Marne, and the forest, Nogent-sur-Marne is a place conducive to the creation of an agglomeration, thus a settlement from the Gallo-Roman period is referenced to this in law.

A Merovingian palace of Chilperic I (526-584) would have been located in Nogent-sur-Marne. In 581, Gregory of Tours cites Novigentum as the king's residence8. Chilpéric received a delegation from Childebert II there, probably in 581.

In addition, a charter of the Nogentais site and dated May 5, 692, would have been issued by the Merovingian king Clovis III (670-?).

It is possible that Thierry III also stayed in Nogent in 675 or 676.

Other official documents also attest to a Merovingian occupation on the territory of the town. This was demonstrated during rescue excavations in 1977 and 1987. During these searches, a number of burials from this period were brought to light. The dating of five of them shows a perennial occupation over all the Merovingian and Carolingian periods. The oldest is dug between 422 and 563 AD.

Domains were established in the Middle Ages:
The Château de Plaisance, built in the thirteenth century, which accommodated Charles V and Jeanne de Bourbon in 1375. The only vestige that remains is a pavilion of the current Maison de Sante, 30 rue de Plaisance, as well as the bottom of the wall. enclosure of the gardens.
The Château de Beauté-sur-Marne, from the fourteenth century, is a royal residence. In the 15th century, Charles VII gave it to his favorite Agnès Sorel, who would thus become Lady of Beauty. It was Cardinal Richelieu who had it razed in 1626.
The seigneury of Nogent belonged to the monks of Saint-Maur-des-Fossés then to the kings of France, but the monks and Charles VI freed the inhabitants from the right of capture.

An ordinance of February 14, 1404 ruled that the Nogentais would mow three arpents of a royal meadow, and would transport the hay to the castle of Vincennes.

In March 1475, by his letters patent, Louis XI confirmed the rights of the inhabitants granted by his predecessors.

Modern times
From the seventeenth century, when the rural population was made up of a majority of winegrowers and farmers, the bourgeoisie discovered the charms of the country and settled in Nogent-sur-Marne; among others:

Jean-Antoine Watteau, the painter who came to spend his last moments with M. Lefevre and died there in 1721 - the precise place of residence in Nogent where he lived the rest of his life caused a debate between Pierre Champion and Émile Brisson towards the late 19th century -. A monument dedicated to his memory, in the form of a bust supported by a pedestal, was subsequently inaugurated in 1865.
The Coignards, printers of the king, with Jean Baptiste II who prints the first edition of the dictionary of the French Academy, and his son Jean Baptiste III who takes over his office and becomes secretary of the King and curator of mortgages.
Abbot of Pomponne, Abbot of Saint-Médard de Soissons, Ambassador of Venice, King's chaplain, State Councilor and creator of the first Arc Company in Nogent in 1733.

The Vandenywers, the Countess Dubarry's bankers, who will be guillotined with her.
The Comtesse de l'Arboust, granddaughter of Louis XV's nanny, who saved the latter from poisoning by feeding him exclusively at the breast, leaving him sole heir to the throne, while we witnessed the near deaths of Louis XV. Dauphin, son of Louis XIV, of Louis, Duke of Burgundy, grandson of Louis XIV, of his wife Marie-Adélaïde of Savoy, and of Louis, Duke of Brittany, elder brother of Louis XV.

French Revolution and Empire
In 1789, during the administrative upheaval of the country initiated by law of the Constituent Assembly, the municipal archives appeared with the creation of the commune of Nogent-sur-Marne, whose activity they retraced. In 1814, on the eve of the occupation of Nogent by the Cossacks during the French Campaign, the municipal authorities put them in safety in a cellar, then during the Franco-German war of 1870, on the eve of the arrival of the German Confederate troops, transfer them to the Paris Commercial Court.

Contemporary period
Shortly after 1870, the current new town hall was built in Square d'Estienne-d'Orves where the archives were stored, then classified methodically once the fighting in 1940 was over, then relatively neglected from 1950 to 1983, and reorganized since that date.

Nogentais railway, viaduct and trams
The construction of the two railway lines from Paris to Mulhouse and from the Bastille to La Varenne in the 1850s further accelerated the process. The train arrived at Nogent-sur-Marne in a temporary station on July 7, 1856 (current line from Paris to Mulhouse). Nogent - Vincennes station opened in 1859 on the Vincennes line.

 

The Nogent-sur-Marne viaduct serves the Paris-Mulhouse line, and in particular for the Paris Gare de l'Est suburb in Tournan-en-Brie (which became RER E in 1999), built by the Auvergnats and the Belgians, was destroyed. first time on September 15, 1870. It was the Italians who rebuilt it. It will be dynamited again by the Germans in 1944, and the destroyed arches replaced by reinforced concrete arches in 1945.

1887 saw the opening of a line of tramways "Vincennes - Ville-Evrard line", of the Nogentais railways with compressed air traction, then electric from 1900.

Bus network
From 1937, a network of buses, leaving in particular from the terminus of metro line 1 Château de Vincennes, will take over (crossing the Bois de Vincennes via the Yellow Door) (113: Le Perreux via the boulevard de Strasbourg, 114 : Le Perreux via the Grande Rue, 120: Bry-sur-Marne, via the Grande Rue). This network will continue until the more practical arrival of the RER A in 1969, following some modifications: the 313 then leaving from the Château de Vincennes, and all the other buses from Nogent station.

Italian transalpine community
No doubt attracted by the reconstruction work, it was the Italian community that took hold. Most of them come from the province of Plaisance, they come from the Val de Nure, no less than 40% for Ferriere, and more precisely from the frazione de Rocca, Bettola, or Val Ceno (Bardi), but also from the province of Novara, or even South Tyrol, Tuscany or Friuli. The story of this immigration is immortalized by François Cavanna in his novel Les Ritals.

Italian immigration began around 1870 and reached its peak around 1926, remaining significant until the 1960s.

Isolated since 1854 by the construction of the viaduct of the Paris-Mulhouse line, the town of Perreux was born after a struggle of more than 10 years in 1887.

Urbanization and development of the road network are continuing with the construction of schools, buildings and the Nogent bridge. After the Second World War, a renovation policy was carried out, and islands were built along the main roads. The banks of the Marne are redeveloped with the filling of its backwater, the construction of the nautical center and the marina.

Near the Bois de Vincennes
The forest bordering Nogent, having become the Bois de Vincennes, entirely redeveloped in 1855 and 1866, at the request of Napoleon III, its proximity to Saint-Mandé on the edge of Nogent, makes it an easily accessible leisure place for children, walkers or cyclists, by joining the Minimes lake near the yellow door.

For more information on the urban history and heritage of Nogent-sur-Marne, see the work published in the Images du Patrimoine collection of the Ministry of Culture: General inventory of cultural heritage, Île-de-France region. Isabelle Duhau (editor); Stéphane Asseline and Laurent Kruszyk (photogr.).

The guinguettes on the banks of the Marne
Nogent-sur-Marne is well known in particular for its taverns, mostly located on the banks of the Marne. From the second half of the 19th century, the common people of Paris, using the new railroad, came in large numbers on Sundays to drink the guinguet, the local wine, exempt from the Parisian alcohol tax. Many musette ball orchestras follow one another, many dancers or titis who came to "hustle" and "encanailler" spinning their rider to the frantic rhythms of the accordion, on Sunday afternoon in particular. The number of taverns was particularly important during its golden age around 1900, favored by the arrival of the Italians. Nogent is then nicknamed the Sunday El Dorado and a documentary film by Marcel Carné (1929) deals with this subject. The musette balls then gradually became scarce, especially from the 1960s, dethroned by the new dance styles and rhythms from the United States. The most famous of them, which still exists today, together with the "Petit Robinson" in Joinville le Pont (closed in 2007), is "Gégène". The boaters were also famous for taking a boat trip on the Marne at that time.

 

Little white wine festival
The Viaduct festival with rowing races and nautical jousting and sometimes the release of aerostatic balloons, took place on August 15 at the beginning of the twentieth century. Nogent-sur-Marne is famous thanks to the song of 1943 in the form of musette waltz, Ah! the little white wine with lyrics by Jean Dréjac and music by Charles Borel-Clerc, then interpreted by Lina Margy. In June 1954, under the aegis of Roland Nungesser, who became mayor of Nogent-sur-Marne in 1959, the small white wine festival was organized, together with the Guinguettes festival and the Back to school festival, in September, of Perreux sur Marne.

This festival brought together in the form of a parade or even concerts, every two years in June for two consecutive days, many brass bands from different countries, such as those from the twin cities, German of Siegburg and Swiss of Yverdon, as well as Holland, made up of brass, fifes and drums, preceded by majorettes, including those of the quadrille de Nogent, accompanied by corsos made up of flowery floats and shipments of multicolored confetti. It started from the top of the Boulevard de Strasbourg, going down Place Leclerc, to move into the Grande Rue and end by regrouping in front of the town hall for a brass band concert in the square. It was enclosed by fireworks on the banks of the Marne. The election of the "miss" designated "Queen of the little white wine" was a personality of the show (cinema, song or television). The last little white wine festival took place in June 1990.

In homage to Jean Dréjac who died in 2003, the city inaugurated in 2007 the Petit-Vin-Blanc square bordered by vines and the Jean-Dréjac alley.

The Quadrille of Nogent-Val de Marne
It began in 1966 in the form of “ballroom and Belle Epoque dances”, inspired by the Lanciers quadrille, comprising five figures. He presents in period costume, where the boater and boat rides on the banks of the Marne were in vogue ... then takes part in the Siegburg carnival. Folk dances were then added to the performances, with the appropriate costumes. He participates in many parades including the Fête du petit vin blanc.

The Sparrows of Val-de-Marne
In 1953, Father Pierre Tessier created the choir-choir des Moineaux de Beauté-Plaisance, a reference to two districts of Nogent. In 1965 they became Les Moineaux du Val-de-Marne, singing in particular at the Saint Saturnin church. Father Roger Coutelle then took charge of it until around 1975. He also wrote and composed several religious Christmas songs. Denis Chasset takes over. They record several famous discs.

Scouting is also very present near the banks of the Marne.

The stadium under the moon, the swimming pool and the Réveil de Nogent
Rowing also has its sports club.

During the 1960s, the “Stade sous la lune” was created, then the marina jetty.

Finally, in 1972, the swimming pool was erected32, containing an indoor pool of 25 m, an outdoor one of 50 m, as well as a pit below a set of large diving boards of 3, 5, and 7.50 meters, the highest rising up to 10 meters. A bowling alley was added to it.

Le Réveil de Nogent was founded in 1883 initially for gymnastics and shooting, then in 1933 created a section for basketball, handball in 1953, classical dance in 1951 and rhythmic dance in 1973.

Art, culture and conferences
At 28 rue Émile-Zola, in 1936, a multipurpose ballroom was fitted out with beautiful decorations and a glass roof with a particular "retro" character, in place of a former municipal gymnasium itself erected in 1927, for conferences. , election votes, documentary screenings, shows, dance, meetings of the Nogent Societies, etc.

The Maison des Jeunes et de la Culture Louis-Lepage (name of the former deputy mayor), was created in the 1970s, offering many artistic and cultural activities: theater, dance, pottery, chess, literary workshop, etc.

The little Place du Théâtre was also created in 1990 near the Nogent-Le Perreux station to build La Scène Watteau, suitable for plays, concerts and shows.

Royal-Palace Cinema
In 1921, Albert Klein built the Royal-Palace in the Grande Rue, which was also used during the interwar period as a music hall, welcoming great artists like Fernandel.

In 1972, it was transformed into four separate Artel-UGC theaters, each showing a continuous film. Faced with the crisis in cinematographic exploitation, it closed its doors in the early 1990s, then reopened in 1997 under its original name of the Royal Palace. In 2012, he added two rooms at the back of the historic building, making it compliant with standards for people with reduced mobility. Its facade was listed as a historical monument in 1990.

 

RER A
In 1969, the crossroads of the Place du Général Leclerc were redeveloped, following the arrival of the new RER A serving Boissy Saint-Léger to Nation initially, replacing the old steam locomotive train which served as far as Bastille. Nogent - Vincennes station is closed to be replaced by the current Nogent-sur-Marne station. Many ten-story buildings were built there. A new covered market was established there as well as an ice rink which operated during the 1990s on this square. The entrance is on avenue des marronniers.

The Baltard pavilion
In 1976, the mayor Roland Nungesser bought the 8th Baltard pavilion, originally built under Napoleon III and dismantled from the old market of the Halles in Paris, to have it rebuilt, by re-adapting the interior to make it a performance hall. .

In this pavilion, he also reassembles the former Gaumont-Palace cinema organ, and installs a piece of the stairs of the Eiffel Tower as well as a carousel of 1900 wooden horses, a Morris column and a Wallace fountain.

Many artists and shows follow one another such as organists John Mann or Rhoda Scott, singers Georgette Plana, Jack Lantier, Michel Sardou, Les Compagnons de la chanson, Thierry Le Luron, the choir Vent d'Est with the Andean group Los Calchakis and the Quadrille de Nogent (Belle Epoque and folk dances) 28. From 1990 to 1994, Michel Drucker made his programs broadcast on TF1 at the Baltard pavilion, under the name of Stars 90.

The sub-prefecture of Val-de-Marne
Around 1978, the oldest buildings located between Grande rue Charles-de-Gaulle and rue Pierre-Brossolette were demolished, to build the new sub-prefecture of Val-de-Marne. Roland Nungesser baptizes the adjacent esplanade in homage to the aviators Nungesser and Coli, thus honoring the memory of his uncle. Watteau Park, until now private, becomes at this same period accessible to the public.

The park of the Biblical Institute has one of the largest cedars in Lebanon in the Parisian suburbs, an arboreal heritage, the second could not be preserved during the development of the sub-prefecture. The street which borders it was also called rue du Cèdre before being renamed rue Jean Moulin around 1959 in homage to the hero of the Resistance,

At the start of the 1990s, the Place du Marché was redeveloped with a kiosk, new buildings replaced the old ones in a more "friendly" way and gradually over the years, the whole of the Grande Rue, as well as the rue Jacques- Kablé. Rue Baüyn-de-Perreuse, where the primary school is located, followed by the Lycée Edouard-Branly (one of the steepest near Paris), becomes entirely pedestrian for the pupils.