Thursday, March 18, 2021

The Underground City of Naours, France

The underground city of Naours is one of the largest tunnel networks in northern France, a centuries-old complex of hand dug stone chambers and tunnels.  It is also home to over 3,200 signatures of World War I soldiers on the western front and is believed to be the highest concentration of graffiti from that conflict yet discovered.  

Two thirds of the etchings on the chalky walls are from Australian soldiers and archaeologist Billes Prilaux has been tasked with connecting the signatures on the walls with the names and bio's of them. So far he has identified 370 soldiers with certainty and has another 140 in the process. 

Prilaux's findings are the basis for a new museum in that country with the theme "Life Behind the Lines". It is a new chapter of Australian war history and will allow visitors to see the graffiti, biographies and portraits of the soldiers before they are lost forever. 

Meet the archaeologist in this short but fascinating video ...



Blogger Anvilcloud said...

A new tidbit of information for me. I hope you are doing well.

4:52 AM  
Blogger Arkansas Patti said...

How great that all those signatures have been preserved all these years. That is quite a job he has.

7:01 AM  
Blogger Marie Smith said...

I saw something like that a few years ago for Canadian soldiers too.

11:55 AM  
Blogger Linda P. said...

Fascinating. I'm a family genealogist. I imagine that many such genealogists have volunteered to research the names.

5:15 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home