1914 Siege of Maubeuge to be commemorated with two days of events

Posted on centenarynews.com on 02 September 2014
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Two days of commemorations are planned in Maubeuge to mark the siege of the French town by German troops during the opening campaign of the First World War. 

Maubeuge, close to the Belgian border, was attacked on 24th August 1914 as British and French forces started their long retreat to the Marne. 

For the next two weeks, its fortresses were heavily bombarded by German artillery, culminating in the surrender of the garrison.

Fort de Leveau, near the village of Feignies, will be at centre of the commemorations on September 6th and 7th 2014, coinciding with the 100th anniversary of the fall of Maubeuge.

The 19th century fort was severely damaged by shelling in the final hours of the siege, leaving 120 soldiers dead. 

Nine bodies weren't recovered until 1998, when they were reburied at Assevent Military Cemetery, near Maubeuge.

A ceremony at Assevent, launching the weekend of commemorations on September 6th, will pay tribute to all those who fell in the fighting. 

Fort de Leveau will be the setting for live reconstructions of the garrison by actors in period military uniforms, as well as a son-et-lumière show and fireworks display.

The fort's original drawbridge, destroyed in 1914, has been recreated for the Centenary, and will be inaugurated on September 7th.

Full details of the Maubeuge/Val de Sambre commemorative programme are available here.

More information about the history of Fort de Leveau can be found here.

Sources: Communauté d'Agglomeration Maubeuge-Val de Sambre; Association Sauvegarde du Fort de Leveau; Nord Tourisme; Wikepedia

Images courtesy of Communauté d'Agglomeration Maubeuge-Val de Sambre; 

Posted by: Peter Alhadeff, Centenary News