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Saint-Louis (Municipality, Haut-Rhin, France)

Last modified: 2004-07-17 by
Keywords: haut-rhin | saint-louis | fleur-de-lys: 3 (white) |
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[Flag of Saint-Louis]by Arnaud Leroy

Source: Pascal Vagnat


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Presentation of Saint-Louis

Saint-Louis (20,321 inhabitants) is the third biggest city in the department of Haut-Rhin. It is located in the region called Sundgau, close to the borders with Switzerland and Germany. This area is also known as Pays des Trois Frontières (Country of the Three Borders).
Saint-Louis is very close to the Swiss city of Basel, and the EuroAirport Basel-Saint-Louis is located on its municipal territory.

The natural reserve area of La Petite Camargue Alsacienne is partially located on the municpal territory of Saint-Louis (borough Neuweg). This protected area was created in 1982 and stretches over 150 ha around the former main bed of the Rhine. An ancient fish farm with its ponds and buildings dated 1853 (Second Empire) can be seen there.

The city of Saint-Louis was founded in 1684 by king Louis XIV and placed under the patronage of king Saint Louis (Louis IX), upon request of the inhabitants of the city (royal decree from 28 November 1684).
Saint-Louis was initially a small locality, administratively part of the municipality of Village-Neuf. Due to its location on the road between Mulhouse and Basel, Saint-Louis developed around a customs house and a post house.

After the Revolution, Saint-Louis progressively gained municipal autonomy. In 1793, Saint-Louis was officially merged with Michelfelden and renamed Bourglibre. In 1827, the parish of Saint-Louis was created; in 1847, Saint-Louis gained its own municipal territory.
In 1866, Saint-Louis had 2,500 inhabitants, several workshops and a brewery. Industrialization developed until 1914 fror the neighbouring city of Basel.

On 20 November 1944, Saint-Louis was the first Alsatian city liberated from the German occupation. In 1953, it was merged with Bourgfelden, and annexed La Chaussée in 1958. The international airport mentioned above was inaugurated in 1970.

Source: Municipal website

Ivan Sache, 17 January 2004


Description of the flag of Saint-Louis

The municipal flag of Saint-Louis is a banner of the municipal arms, whose history was related by Christian Wilsdorf, former Director of the Departmental Archives of Haut-Rhin, in Les armoiries de Saint-Louis, Memento municipal # 7 (1969-1970).

The coat of arms of Saint-Louis blazons:

D'azur à trois fleurs de lys d'argent posées deux et une. (Azure three fleur-de-lys argent 2 + 1)

These arms were designed in 1901-1902, for inclusion in a stained-glass window of the cantonal court of Mulhouse. They recall both Saint Louis, the patron saint of the city, and king Louis XIV, the founder of the city. The arms of Saint-Louis are based on the arms of the kings of France:

D'azur à trois fleurs de lys d'or posées deux et une.

The first version of the municipal arms was heraldically incorrect, since an horizontal stripe of gold had been placed on the fleur-de-lys. The mistake was corrected in a further version of the municipal arms, still in use today.

Source: Municipal website

Ivan Sache, 17 January 2004

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