The national necropolis of Dormans
La nécropole nationale de Dormans. © ECPAD
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The Dormans national necropolis contains the remains of about two thousand soldiers who died during fighting in the region in 1918. The cemetery was redesigned between 1918 and 1922 to bring together the bodies of soldiers exhumed from isolated graves and various temporary cemeteries in the region (Anthenay, Igny-Comblizy, Soilly and Vandières). From the Great War there are some 1,895 French soldiers (including 661 in two ossuaries) and 22 British, notably RAF airmen. In 1954, the bodies of 34 combatants who died for France in June 1940, including seven unidentified bodies, were interred in the cemetery, including twin brothers Albert and Henri Adda, members of the 173rd Alpine infantry regiment, who died on 9th June 1940 in Maizy (grave 1292) and 13th June 1940 in Festigny (grave 1291) respectively. The adjoining German cemetery contains nearly two thousand soldiers, many of whom fell in 1918, belonging to regiments from Thuringia, Saxony and Eastern Prussia.
In the hills above the town, a memorial to the sacrifice of the French and allied troops who fought in the two battles of the Marne was erected between 1921 and 1931 thanks to the backing of Madame de la Rochefoucauld, the Cardinal of Reims, the Bishop of Châlons, the military authorities and many donors. With the Douaumont ossuary, the basilica of Notre-Dame de Lorette and the Hartmannswillerkopf memorial, this was one of four national monuments erected by subscription after the Great War. The Gothic construction is based around two commemorative chapels illustrated by patriotic stained-glass windows. Outside is a “lantern of the dead” recalling the sacrifice and losses of many families. An ossuary contains the remains of nearly 1,500 soldiers, mostly unidentified. In 2014, the Ministry of Defence decided to provide the Dormans municipal council, owner of the site, with support for the restoration of the entire memorial.
À 16 km à l'est de Château-Thierry, sur la RN3, à la sortie nord-est de Dormans
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