Rue Méchain

Arrondissment 14

Number 13

The site at No 13 rue Méchain of the famous left-wing Union print works from 1910 to 1990.

What was once the Ruelle des Capucins was renamed in 1806 soon after the death of the astrologist Pierre Méchain, due to its proximity to the Observatory that was founded in 1667.

Georgi Plekhanov, a founding figure of Russian marxism, used the Russian language Union print shop to print his Fundamental Marxist Questions in 1910

The Union printers, a Russian immigrant printing works, was set up here in 1910. Hazan (WTP) writes that it was supposedly used by Plekhanov and Lenin. It then moved in book printing, along with publications of the modernist movement.

In 1913 Monatte had the CGT paper, La Vie Ouvrière printed here.

Founder of surrealism Guillaume Apollinaire published his Calligrammes poems of peace and war in 1918 at the Union printshop

Shortly after his death in the Spanish flu pandemic of 1918, Guillaume Apollinaire’s Calligrammes was also printed here. From 1930 to 1933 the Union also printed the Surrealist group’s periodical, Le Surrealisme au service de la revolution.

The printshop finally closed in 1990.

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