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DEAUVILLE: (Calvados département, Basse-Normandie région) PDF Print E-mail

49°21′33″N, 0°04′17″E. This commune with its racecourse, harbour, marinas, conference center, villas, Grand Casino, and sumptuous hotels is regarded as the queen of Norman beaches. The first reference to Deauville was in 1060 when the village then called A Enilla (German for wet meadow) was more a fishing hamlet than a village. The village was originally up on the hill with a few houses built next to the St Laurent chapel. Near the coast, the village had a small and unimportant harbour on the river Touques. Deauville or Dauville owes everything to the Duc de Morny. He described the village thus: Calm city, street uninhabited, forming an absolute contrast with Trouville, enlivened and loud. But this lack of life is, in reality, only surface, due to splendid ownership, as well as delightful gardens that encircle them, with such care that tthey cannot beany more refined. In 1855, land was being bought at 5 centimes/m²; in 1862 the same land was worth 1 Franc/m². The buyer had bought marsh land and sold buildable land. In 1858, Doctor Oliffe, who owned a villa in Trouville, decided to create a town for pleasure on the deserted sand dunes. In 1862, the first stone of today's Deauville was laid. The duke bought 2.4 square kilometres of marsh land and dunes for 800,000 Francs. The Touques was still unchannelled but during the Second Empire, low tides permitted the construction of walls. In the 1860s, visits by Napoleon III made the coast of Normandy adjacent to Deauville fashionable. Soon speculators developed the infrastructure necessary to accommodate members of the Imperial court and the growing Parisian bourgeoisie. The railway arrived at Trouville-sur-Mer in 1863 and using the station called Trouville, passengers reached Deauville in six hours from Paris. The harbour with locks was dug up in 1866. Morny, who had influence at Court, managed to persuade the aristocracy that staying on the coast would benefit their health. Land was bought and large villas, sometimes even palaces, constructed. A casino and hotels soon followed as rich tourists came in numbers. Deauville hardly suffered during the First World War. During German Occupation in World War II, Deauville saw most of its leisure proprieties confiscated for use by the occupying force. During the 1960s, Deauville started to accept less fortunate, but still now is a haven for the rich and famous as well as holiday makers. Home to the Deauville-La Touques Racecourse, the countryside around Deauville is the main horse breeding region in France and home to numerous stud farms. Synagogue: 14, rue Castor - 14800 DEAUVILLE, Tél 02-31-81-27-03. [January 2008]

Burial site is undetermined. [January 2008]

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