Key dates in 1830

Chronology from Le Maitron of key dates in French labour history

Author: Stéphane Sirot, additional material by Michel Cordillot, René Lemarquis and Claude Pennetier with Steve Jefferys (italicised)

January 19 The first extreme cold period of the year that began on December 6 1829 ends.

February 7 The government decides to seize Algiers.

February 8 The second extreme cold period of the year that began on January 24 ends.

February 15 The Globe set up by Paul-François Dubois and Pierre Leroux becomes a daily.

February James Fazy and Antony Thouret‘s newspaper La Revolution first appears.

May 16 Charles X dissolves the Chamber of Deputies after 221 deputies had voted against his ministers.

May 25 The French expeditionary force of 38,000 soldiers embarks at Toulon to attack Algiers.

June 23-July 19 The new elections give outright majority to the liberal opposition to Charles X with 274 deputies out of 428.

July 5 Algiers is taken and Algeria becomes a French colony. This colonisation without consulting the British leads their ambassador to not give support to Charles X during the July Revolution; the expedition also weakens the number of loyal troops based in and around Paris. The news reaches Paris on July 9.

July 25 Under Article 14 of the 1814 Constitutional Charter that allowed the King to rule by decree, Charles X signed four decrees at St Cloud to restrict press freedom to cut the number of voters (by excluding patents from the possessions that counted towards taxable wealth), to dissolve the new Chamber of Deputies and to set up a new reactionary government.

July 26 The new ordinances were published, sparking a protest letter signed by 44 journalists from 12 newspapers who met in the National office in the Rue St Marc. They included Leroux of the Saint-Simonian Le Globe and Thiers of the constitutional monarchist Le National. Four newspapers (Le National, Le Temps, Le Globe and Le Journal du commerce) decide to go ahead and publish the protest letter, Thousands of copies are then distributed in the streets.

July 27-28-29 The ‘Glorious Three days’. Barricades across Paris. Louis-Philippe replaced Charles X in August.

July 27 The Commerce Law Court declares the ordinances restricting the electorate of the merchant and commercial classes was contrary to the 1814 Charter and was not obligatory. In the printing districts a large number of print workers found themselves unemployed, and angry, unleashed a Paris-wide insurrection threatening the government and ministers. A big crowd gathered in the gardens of the Palais-Royal and are cleared by mounted troops. In the early afternoon, after troops killed one man and wounded three others, the first barricade was built in the Rue Saint-Honoré, turning over a builders’ rubble cart that had been waiting for the troops to pass.

That night barricades were built across Paris, using paving stones and tree trunks where they could be cut. Meanwhile Charles X’s new military commander, Marmont, the hated Duke of Raguse, dispersed his 15,000 troops to key places such as the Place du Carrousel, the Place Louis XVI (Concorde), the Bastille square, the Place Vendome and the Pont Neuf.

July 28 As Paris students, workers and shopkeepers armed themselves fighting took place near the Town Hall that Marmont attempted to retake, and in the Rue Saint-Denis and Rue Saint Martin in an effort to clear Rue St Honoré. By early afternoon the troops were cornered and fraternisation was beginning. But Charles X rejected proposals to negotiate.

The Town Hall was occupied and the fearful government ministers escaped back to the Tuileries Palace. At nightfall Marmont organised a difficult retreat to a defensive rectangle stretching from the Place de la Concorde to the Louvre, with the Rue St Honoré and the Seine its north and south limits. Altogether some 800 insurgents had been killed and 4,500 wounded in the fighting, while 200 soldiers were killed and 800 wounded.

The people spent the night building still more barricades which in some places were every 20 metres, making it very difficult for the troops to move their artillery. Eyewitnesses suggested after the event that there were 4,000 barricades built in total during the July revolution.

July 29

July 30 The club called Friends of the People is set up.

July 31 The last attempt to prevent Lafayette from transferring power to Louis-Philippe fails.

July-November Strikes take place for higher wages and the reduction of the working day in Rouen, Darnetal, Paris, Roubaix and Limoges. Some printing and weaving machines are borken.

October 17-20 Considerable unrest in Paris when the trial of Charles X’s ministers takes place. Posters appear on the walls again in the workers’ districts inciting citizens to arm themselves to reconquer the rights they have again been denied.

December 20-22 A new wave of poster proclamations aimed at ‘the People’ and calling on the workers’ districts to take action and demanding an elected assembly representing these districts renewable every year. Some very violent worker and student demonstrations take place followed by a large number of arrests.



Key Dates 1816 – 1829

Chronology from Le Maitron of key dates in French labour history

Author: Stéphane Sirot, additional material by Michel Cordillot, René Lemarquis et Claude Pennetier and Steve Jefferys (italicised)


May 8 Divorce abolished (only to be re-established in 1884) by the ultraroyalist chamber of deputies elected in august 1815 by a majority of 225 to 11.


January 8 An order forbidding introductio of black slaves into French colonies was issued

January/February Rural unrest as bread shortages and local famines hit the Brie and Champagne areas of France.

February 5 A new electoral law restricts the electorate to those who pay 300 francs in taxes, to about 90,000 men, and to become a deputy requires paying 1000 francs in taxes, limiting eligibility to about 15,000. Elections take place at meetings of electors who have constituted themselves as an Electoral College.

February 12 A law permits those suspected of plotting against the royal family or state security can be arrested and held without being taken to court.

April 1 The coalition powers agree to a reduction in the numbers of occupying soldiers from 150,000 to 120,000, reducing the cost of supporting them to the treasury.

June 8 An insurrection breaks out in Lyon and the surrounding area, leading to the first executions of workers on June 13.

September 20 Elections for the Chamber of Deputies see some liberal deputies elected and the formation of an Independent Party in the Chamber.

October Trials take place in Lyon of the Lyon workers arrested in June.


March 20 A fire takes place at the Odeon Theatre.

October 20-26 Partial elections in which the Independents gain 20 seats.

November 30 The occupying troops leave France after it paid war indemnities,


February 26 Weaving machines are destroyed in Vienne and later in the year at Mortagne and Limoux.

September 11-20 The liberals have some success in the elections


February 13 Assassination of the Duke de Berry, King Louis XVIII’s nephew and son of the future Charles X provoking a government shift towards repression and the start of the second wave of White Terror. Censorship is reestablished and individual liberty suspended.

June 3 A 17-year-old student Nicolas Lallemand is killed by a palace guard in the Place du Carrousel during a demonstration against giving two votes to the tax payers who pay the most tax.

June 9 Lallemand’s funeral procession to Pere Lachaise cemetery was swollen to 6,000 people by large numbers of workers from the Saint-Antoine area.

August 19 The French Bazar conspirators of the Rue Cadet try to initiate a Bonapartist conspiracy, at the same time as in Lyon and Colmar.


May 1 The French Carbonari movement is founded by Philippe Buchez, Saint-Arnand Bazard and Jacques-Thomas Flotard. Support for secret societies is in part a response to the gradual elimination of liberals in the National Assembly as the 1820 law of the double vote takes effect.

May 5 Napoleon dies on Saint Helena. The news reaches Paris on July 5.

December 24-28 A Carbonari insurrection is Saumur fails to take off.

France: Population is 30,461,875, of which Paris is 713,000 and the next two largest towns are Marseille with 116,000 and Lyon with 115,000.


January 1 La Fayette arrives in Belfort but the Carbonari plan for an insurrection is discovered.

February 24 Carbonari insurrection led by General Berton fails at Thouars. His march on Saumur is stopped and he is executed on October 5.

Spring Charles Fourier published the first abridged 700-page version of his Grand Treatise, proposing the establishment of ideal communities and moved from Besancon to Paris with most of the 1,000 copies to sell them to as many people as possible. Initially only having a handful of followers, the Fourierist movement developed rapidly in the 1830s under the leadership of Victor Considerant.

March 19 Four sergeants based at La Rochelle are arrested for planning a Carbonari insurrection.

July 1-3 A Carbonari insurrection at Colmar aiming to release the Belfort prisoners and to bring Napoleon II to power, fails. It was led by Colonel Caron, who was executed in Strasbourg on October 1.

September 21 The Four Sergeants of La Rochelle are executed in the Place de Grève in front of the Paris Town Hall. The executions are witnessed by the young Auguste Blanqui.


March 3-4 Jacques-Antoine Manuel, a minority liberal deputy and friend of Beranger, is thrown out of the Chamber of Deputies for opposing Louis XVIII’s proposed invasion of Spain to ‘restore a grandchild of Henry IV to the throne of Spain’ and with him, royal despotism. Some rioting in Paris followed.


February 25 – March 6 The ultra royalist right secure 415 deputies out of 430 after rigged elections that follow the victory of the French army over the Spanish democratic movement.

August 6-8 A strike and demonstrations involving over 1,500 spinners at Houlmes, near Rouen, and neighbouring villages demands parity with wages and conditions in all the factories in the region.

September 16 Louis XVIII dies. Charles X becomes king.


May 19 Death of Saint-Simon, author of the Catechism of Industrials and New Christianity. Few knew of them during his life, but his ideas were popularised by his disciples Olinde Rodrigues, Prosper Enfantin and Saint-Amand Bazard., who brought together between 1826 and 1830 a philosophical school comprising a brilliant and active group. Saint-Simon is buried at Pere Lachaise.

October 1 The first issue is published of the Saint-Simonian Producer journal, whose final issue is published on December 12.

November 30 Between 60,000 and 100,000 people attend the funeral of the former Napoloeonic General and liberal deputy Maximilien Sébastien Foy, who is buried at Pere Lachaise.

December 24 A strike takes place in the coal mines and mirror factories of Commentry in central France. This small town became the first in France to elect a socialist mayor in 1882, and hosted the September 1902 unity congress that created the short-lived Socialist Party of France with the merger of the ‘Marxist’ French Workers Party (POF) of Jules Guesde, with the Blanquiste Revolutionary Socialist Party of Eduard Vaillant and its semi-autonomous Revolutionary Communist Alliance led by Arthur Groussier.


November 1 The Law Gazette appears for the first time.


February 7 Nine miners are killed in a coal mine in Aniche.

March 30 The funeral of La Rochefoucault-Liancourt sparks a riot after the police charge the students carrying the casket in the Rue Saint-Honore, and it falls to the ground and breaks open.

April 29 A republican demonstration takes place against the new press censorship laws. The Parisian National Guard is disbanded.

August 24 Some 100,000 people attend the funeral of the liberal deputy Manuel who had earlier opposed the French army intervention to restore absolutism in Spain.

September The royalist Pierre Charnier founds the earliest Lyon mutual aid society among the silk weavers of Lyon. It watches prices and allows the master workers to support each other.

October 4 The French start fighting the Dey of Algiers following the alledged insult to the French consul on April 30.

November 17-20 After the electoral success of the opposition (180 government absolutism-supporting deputies are re-elected with an opposition of 170 liberals and 80 right/conservative deputies) violent demonstrations, met with severe repression, take place across France but especially in Paris. Many workers are killed and wounded. For the first time since the 17th century Fronde barricades appeared on the streets. Blanqui was shot in the neck on the corner of the Rue aux Ours and the Rue Quincampoix on November 19.

November 30 The Lyon Mutual Aid Society founded by Jacques Lacombe is authorised by the mayor.


Bazard publishes the Doctrine of Saint-Simon. Buonarroti publishes in Brussels his historic Conspiracy of Equals. This action, and the success of this book, stimulate the emergence after 1830 of a communist neo-Babeufian movement that will inspire the secret societies of the first decade of the July Monarch, that will develop further during its second decade.

Journalists associated with ‘Young France’ and the La Tribune des départements which is launched the following year, becoming the official voice of the Rights of Man society, form a Republican Society.


January 1 Gas lights are lit for the first time in the Rue de La Paix (10) and in the Place Vendôme.(4). By the end of the year 12 gas lights lit up the night at both the Place de l’Odeon and the Rue de Catiglione, as well as the galaries of the Palais Royal.

May 25-30 The ‘War of the Maidens’ (Guerre des Demoiselles) breaks out in the Ariège department in the Pyrennees in protest against the 1827 Forestry Code that prohibited peasants from collecting wood, cutting it and keeping their animals in pastures in the forests. The rebellion continued off and on for three years, and then sporadically until 1872.

June 8 The republican daily newspaper, La Tribune des départements, is published

December The newspaper Le Globe moves under the control of the Saint-Simonians under the influence of Pierre Leroux.


Rue de Verneuil

Arrondissement 7

Numbers: 46

The road was named after the Duke Henri de Bourbon-Verneuil, a son of Henry IV who was Abbott of the nearby St Germain-des-Pres abbey in 1640 when the road was first opened.

Jean Zay lived in a flat at No. 46 from 1934. His eldest daughter was born there in 1936, the year he became Minister of Education and Culture in the Blum Popular Front government.

There is now a rare plaque to a leftist on the wall outside the flat.

After facing increasing threats from La Cagoule, the undergorund fascist organisation, the Zay family moved to the Rue de Bourgogne.


Key Dates 1795-1815

Chronology from Le Maitron of key dates in French labour history

Author: Stéphane Sirot, additional material by Michel Cordillot, René Lemarquis et Claude Pennetier and Steve Jefferys (italicised)


April 1-2 A workers’ insurrection repressed in Paris.

May 20, May 23 Another workers’ insurrection in Paris ending in the Army occupying the militant Saint-Antoine district. The revolt is finally over after three days of fighting. The slogan of the revolutionaries was ‘Bread and the Constitution of Year 2‘.

December Workers strikes in Paris


March 30 Gracchus Babeuf and his comrades establish the Insurrectionary Committee of the Equals. Sylvain Maréchal drafts the Manifesto of the Equals.

May 10 Babeuf, Buonarroti and 245 ‘Equals’ supporters arrested.

September 9, 10 Equals plot to win over the Grenelle soldiers for a revolution foiled. Many arrests.

October 10 30 of the Equals condemned to death by a military court.


May 27 Babeuf and others in the Conspiracy of the Equals guillotined.

November 16 Carpenters strike in Paris


September 19 110 inventors and industrialists participate in the opening ceremony of an Industrial Exhibition in the Champs de Mars organised under the 1795-1799 Directorate.


November 9 Louis-Napoléon Bonaparte stages a Coup d’État that overthrows the Directorate and opens a period of social calm with regulations highly favourable to employers. This took place on the 18 Brumaire an VIII in the revolutionary calendar.


December 24 Chambers of Commerce and Industry are created by the 1799-1804 Consulate that replaces the Directorate.


April 12 A law is passed regulating work in factories and workshops and at the same time renewing the illegality of workers’ combinations.

December 1 The workers’ passbook (livret ouvrier) is introduced. It is a kind of identify passport that allows the police and employers to know the exact situation of each worker. Any worker travelling without their passbook is declared to be a vagabond and can be treated as such.


March 21 The Civil Code (article 1781) states that in the case of a dispute about a worker’s salary the word of the master takes precedence over the worker’s statements in front of a tribunal. This article is only abolished in 1866. The Code provides for divorce, but within a marriage the wife is treated as a minor, and her property is given to her husband. On his death the property is divided equally between the children, abolishing the right of the oldest male child to inherit all the property.

December 2 Napoléon is crowned Emperor at Notre-Dame Cathedral by Pope Pius VII.


March 18 Establishment of the first industrial tribunals called Conseils de prud’hommes (Wise Men Councils) to arbitrate where there were disputes between employers and their skilled workers. The first one appeared in Lyon.


June 11 Decree passed to finalisie the 1806 Industrial Tribunal law.


February 10, 22 A decree outlining a new Penal Code was passed into law. It codified all the penal laws passed between 1791 and 1800. Its articles 291, 292, 414, 415 and 416 required all associations of 20 or more people to secure government approval for their existence and confirmed the illegality of all combinations of workers aiming to stop work or modify wages.


March 2 Hunger riots in Caen; an order is passed organising the distribution of 2 million soups.


January 3 A decree fixes the minimum age a child can go down a mine to ten.


March 31 Coalition armies enter Paris. Napoleon abdicates at Fontainebleau on April 5 in favour of his son, and then unconditionally on April 11.

May 3 Louis XVIII enters Paris.

June 4 Louis XVIII issues a Constitutional Charter providing for a parliamentary system with a house of lords nominated by the King and an elected chamber of deputies.

October Saint-Simon and his then secretary, Augustin Thierry publish De la réorganisation de la société européenne. It proposes the extension of English parliamentary rule under a constitutional monarch to every European state with a European parliament above them. It escapes the restoration censor, unlike its second edition.


February 25 Napoléon Bonaparte leaves Elba for France.

June 18 Napoléon defeated at the Battle of Waterloo.

June 24 Napoléon leaves Paris.

July 8 Louis XVIII returns to Paris.

July 15 Napoléon surrenders to the English on the Bellerophon that sails for Plymouth

August 7 The Northumberland leaves for Saint-Helena with Napoléon on board. It arrives there on October 16.

November Pierre-Jean Béranger published his first book of songs, Chansons morales et autres in which he celebrated the victories of the Revolution and the Empire, attacked the ancien regime and the supremacy of the clergy.

December 7 Marshal Ney is executed in the Luxembourg Garden for having supported Napoléon during the 100 Days.

PLACES 1795-1815

Key dates 1787-1794

Chronology from Le Maitron 1791-1794 of key dates in French labour history

Authors: Stéphane Sirot, additional material by Michel Cordillot, René Lemarquis et Claude Pennetier, and from 1787 to 1790 by Steve Jefferys


May 25 Assembly of Notables called by Louis XVI to support his proposals to raise taxes and put pressure on the 13 local Parlements to endorse them was dissolved after failing to agree to them.


May 5-6 Paris rioted when its Parlement was surrounded by troops after refusing to register the new tax laws and called for the King to call an Estates-General meeting.


January 24 Louis XVI called for elections to the Estates-General, the only body with the power to advise the King to raise taxes directly.

April 28 After a candidate in the Paris elections argued that deregulating the price of bread would allow wage cuts a riot took place around his wallpaper factory and home in the Rue de Montreuil, during which some 25 people were killed by the troops.

May 5 The deputies from the nobility, clergy and Third Estate (everyone else) met in Versailles near the royal chateau.

June 17 The Third Estate deputies voted to declare themselves a National Assembly, representing the people of France.

June 20 After the King ordered the closure of the Assembly’s meeting place the delegates met in a nearby Tennis Court and swore ‘The Tennis Court Oath‘ not to disperse until they had agreed a new French Constitution.

July 13 After Louis XVI began to move troops into Paris, the new Paris Assembly of Voters and its Third Estate deputies decided to create a militia of male voters to defend order and their property.

July 14 When the militia were prevented from taking gunpowder from the Bastille fort/prison for the muskets they had seized, shots were exchanged and a short siege took place before the Bastille governor surrendered.

August 4 The National Constituent Assembly passed the first of 19 decrees carried in just one week that ended the privileges of the nobility and went on to abolish taxes to be paid to the Church and then to end serfdom.

August 26 The Assembly passed the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen.

October 5-6 After some 10,000 women marched from Paris to Versailles, under great pressure the royal family agreed to go back with them the next day to live in the Tuileries Palace in Paris.


May 21 The Constituent Assembly established the Paris Commune with each of 48 administrative sections sending three delegates to the new municipal government, voted in by ‘active’ citizens – men aged 25 and over who paid taxes.

June 19 Hereditary peerage abolished by the Constituent Assembly.

July 12 A new Civil Constitution for the Clergy was passed, requiring the clergy to give an oath of fidelity to France.


March 2, March 17 The Allarde Law outlaws corporations and proclaims the principles of the freedom of work, business and industry.

May 22, June 14 The Le Chapelier law outlaws combinations of tradespeople/workers and strikes.

July 20 All agreements on wages and prices are banned.


June 20 The Parisian Sans-Culottes (trouser wearing workers) storm the Tuileries Palace and force King Louis XVI to wear the red phrygian bonnet.

August 10 The Sans-Culottes create a insurrectional commune (Paris government) invade the Tuileries Palace and overthrow the monarchy.

August 11 Universal suffrage is enacted by the Legislative Assembly.


April 6 Committee of Public Safety established by the National Convention.

May 24 The Girondins arrest the ‘Enragés’ Jacques Hébert.

May 31 A Paris insurrection takes place against the Girondins.

July 27 Maximilien Robespierre is elected to the Committee of Public Safety.

September 5 The leader of the Enragés, Jacques Roux, is arrested.


March 13, March 24 The remaining Enragés leaders, known as Hébertists, are arrested, tried and then executed.

July 28 Robespierre is executed in the Place de la Concorde.

PLACES 1791-1794

Rue Boulard

Arrondissement 14

Numbers: 36, 46

Built in 1838 in the Montrouge commune and absorbed into Paris in 1863 it was named after Michel-Jacques Boulard, Josephine’s official Imperial tapestry-maker, who. He spend the last three years of his life in a hospice and left a huge amount of money to build the new St-Michel Hospice that opened in 1830.

No. 36 was opened on 17 April 1871 as a recruitment office for the National Guard during the Paris Commune.

Proudhon lived at No. 46 with his family for several years in the 1850s. Having been rebuilt or built in the late 19th century as a local boys school, this address is now an elementary school .

Fifty years after Proudhon had lived in Rue Boulard the street had changed little

Proudhon, of course, would not have approved of the state deciding how to educate children. He believed this could lead to brainwashing. He argued instead that each family (father) should be responsible for the education of their children.

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Rue des Bourdonnais

Arrondissement 1

Numbers: 11, 32

Rue Bourdonnais photographed by Charles Marville in 1853

This road owes its present name (finally decided in 1852) to the brothers Adam and Guillaume Bourdon, provost of the merchants of Paris and wealthy Parisians in the 12th century.

On July 29 1843 Alexandre Ledru-Rollin and Louis Blanc together with François Arago, Ferdinand Flocon and Godefroi Cavaignac met at Ledru-Rollin’s office at No. 11 and decided to set up a radical newspaper that would campaign for democracy,  La Réforme. The photograph above of Rue Bourdonnais was taken ten years later by Charles Marville.

This was where on February 21 1848 the Republicans around the Reform paper took the decision to resort to armed resistance to the King’s decision to ban the Paris banquet in their national campaign to extend the franchise. Among those meeting were the Worker Albert, Ledru-Rollin, Etienne Arago and Marc Caussidière.

The office became the headquarters of the February Revolution, and was where on February 24 1848 Ledru-Rollin, Blanc, l’ouvrier Albert, Flocon, Arago and Cavaignac drew up the left’s list for membership of the provisional government.

A century later, No 32 was the home from 1954 to 1958 of the Catholic priest, Henri Grouès (called l’abbé Pierre), who had been in the resistance and then a deputy, and was the founder of the Emmaüs charity.


Rue de Bretagne

Arrondissement 3

Numbers: 14, 39, 49, 62, 71

The road was named ‘Brittany’ after a never completed project of Henry IV to build a great square into which several streets would run, each with the name of a different province. After two streets were merged in 1851 the road is nearly half a kilometre in length. The even-numbered side of the road was demolished in 1920 to widen the road to its present width.

No. 14 was where the first issue of the centre-left newspaper Libération was prepared and published on April 18 1973.

The oldest covered market in Paris at No. 39, the Market of the Red Children (Le marché des Enfants Rouges), was established in 1628 near an orphanage whose children were dressed in red, the colour of charity). During the ‘Bloody week’ at the end of the Paris Commune in May 1871 the market was fortified and defended.

On January 2 1910 Lenin attended a revolutionary ‘goguette‘ – a kind of drinking + sing-song / poetry-and-literature dinner with roughly 20 people – organised by La Muse Rouge in a room on the first floor of No. 49. We don’t know if he was accompanied by Krupskaya or Inessa.

No 49

The venue (shown in the photograph taken in the 1910s) was the Third arrondissement’s communal building. At the time there were hundreds of these goguette events being organised regularly in Paris. The Muse Rouge theatre group was expelled by the PCF in 1925.

By 1921 the building included the office of the Paris Federation of the SFIO (Socialists) and this was where Breton and Aragon came to apply to join the new French Section of the Communist International, less than a week after the majority of socialists had voted at the Tours Congress to affiliate to the Third International.

In 1922 the cooperative workers’ restaurant and café La Famille Nouvelle based at No. 49 was visited by many leftists including Ho Chi Minh. Many left events took place, including monthly dinners of the Revolutionary Esperantists, who were entertained by the Socialist Federation’s choir.

On September 1 1939 Palmiro Togliatti was arrested by the French police and taken to the Police Station at No. 62. They didn’t find out his true identity and he was jailed only for holding false papers and finally released in February 1940.

In the bloody week of May 1871 a barricade across the road at No. 71 defended by the 86th National Guard battalion mounted strong resistance to the Versaillais troops. This was also the address where Sylvain Maréchal, who drafted the Equality Manifesto of April 1796 is supposed to have lived.


Rue Cabanis

Arrondissement 14

Number 1

Opened in 1861 the road was renamed in 1867 after one of the major influences on the teaching of medicine in France, Pierre Jean Georges Cabanis.

The hôpital Sainte-Anne at No. 1 was funded by the Queen Regent, Anne of Austria, in 1651 in exchange for it being called by her name and prayers being given for her soul by the inmates. It was completely rebuilt in 1772, and in 1863 Napoléon III decided to build a psychiatric hospital or asylum on the site of the neighbouring Saints-Anne farm.

Althusser was one of the many patients treated at the hospital. His first time was in 1947 and last in 1980, after he strangled his wife.

Other patients included Maurice Utrillo in 1904 to try and cure his alcoholism.


Boulevard des Italiens

Arrondissements 2, 9

Numbers: 2, 8, 9, 19, 22, 30

Boulevard des Italiens by Gustave Caillebotte (1880)

One of the ‘Great Boulevards’ in a wealthy part of Paris, it was built on the allotments outside the city when in 1670 Louis XIII’s wall around Paris was declared obsolete. Initially called the ‘New Boulevard’ and then the ‘Depot Boulevard’ (after the 1764 regimental arms depot there). It was finally named after the Italian Theatre built there in 1783 that is now occupied by the Comic Opera.

Even numbers are in the Ninth arrondissement, while odd numbers are in the Second.

From December 1919 to 1923 Louis Aragon and André Breton with other surrealists used to meet regularly in the Café Certà at No. 2. This address was in the ‘Passage de l’Opéra‘ – two parallel galleries of cafés and shops first built in 1822 and demolished in 1925.

The Mulhouse bar was based at No. 8. In March 1848 meetings of the German democratic association used to take place here, attended, among others by Karl Marx and Ludwig Feuerbach.

Ironically, on the other side of the Boulevard, at No. 9, in 1942 to 1943 the Vichy government tried unsuccessfully to recruit French workers to work voluntarily in Germany.

Crédit Lyonnais’s headquarters was built between 1876 and 1913 in the grand Haussmann style. This didn’t stop it experiencing a strike and occupation in 1968

Arlette Laguiller, who became the first woman to stand for President of France as a candidate of the Trotskyist Lutte Ouvriere sect in 1974, led a strike and occupation in 1968 at the Credit Lyonnais headquarters at No. 19 in 1968. The building had been the first in Paris to be lit by electricity in 1876.

Louis Blanc lived above the Tortoni café at No. 22 for a period.

No. 30 was the site of a bomb left by the anarchists Action Directe against the Israeli Leumi bank on 13 April 1985.

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Avenue Reille

Arrondissement 14

Numbers 7, 25, 53

Running southwards up to the Montsouris Park the avenue was opened in 1865 under the Second Empire. Because it was close to the Thiers wall around Paris, it was named after Marshal Charles Reille who had died five years earlier. He had been promoted to General by Napoleon Bonaparte, whom he supported during the 100 days of 1815, leading the Second Army corps at Waterloo.

The leafy Avenue Reille in 1900, fifteen years after Rosa Luxemburg moved in.

For 18 months from 18 March 1895 Rosa Luxemburg shared a third-floor flat at No. 7 with Cezaryna Wanda Wojnarowska, a Polish revolutionary who had already lived in Paris for several years and who lived in France for the rest of her life, joining the SFIO in the 1900s.

Rosa Luxemburg shared a flat at No. 7 in 1895-96 while working on her doctorat and producing the ‘Workers’ Cause’ Polish social democratic newspaper.

In September 1910 Inessa Armand stayed for a couple of months at No 25 with her former husband, who then moved back to Moscow with their three children.

No. 53, the Villa Reille, was the first building in Paris, a house cum artist’s studio, designed by Le Corbusier working with his cousin, Pierre Jeanneret, in 1923.

Georges Braque also lived in the Avenue in the 1920s.