Rue Guynemer

Arrondissement 6

Number 36

Léon Blum moved in to No 36 Rue du Luxembourg in 1896 upon his marriage to Lise Bloch. In 1898 the young lawyer began to support the Dreyfus campaign.

Léon Blum lived here in 1898, helping Émile Zola’s defence team, as the Dreyfus campaign was at its height. A qualified lawyer, Blum carried out legal research for Zola’s defence and also wrote a column on each day’s events. He lived here with his wife, Lise Bloch, whom he had married two years earlier.

The street was called the rue du Luxembourg when Blum and Lise Bloch lived here. It was renamed in 1918 in honour of Georges Guynemer, a 23-year-old French fighter pilot killed in combat in 1917.

A more interesting World War 1 fighter pilot for the left than Guynemer was the first black fighter pilot, Eugene Jacques Bullard. Despite being awarded the Legion d’Honneur (Chevalier) in 1959 for service to France in two world wars, there is no street named after him that I can find in France. I have found, however, a reference to him drinking and deciding to become a pilot at the Coupole brasserie on the Boulevard du Montparnasse in 1916.

A more realistic photograph of the World War 1 fighter pilot Bullard appears in Aviation History