Hello! My Sunday Salon is very late this week, because I’ve been gone for the past 36 hours, we were down in Indianapolis for my grandma’s surprise birthday party. It was lots of fun and Daniel was a big hit.
What I really wanted to talk to you all about, though, is something that popped up in my reading a whole lot this week: Le Havre, France. I have never before heard of La Havre, but it popped up in THREE different books I was reading this week.
First, it was the home of Claude Monet and his family before he left his father and siblings to go to Paris and pursue his art in “Claude and Camille.”
Then, I was following Madame Leon Grandin and her husband from France to Chicago for the World’s Fair in “A Parisienne in Chicago,” her travelogue.
That it was in those two books was strange enough, but once I finished those, I thought I was done with Le Havre. Imagine my surprise when I started the audio of “My Life in France” and Julia and Paul Child voyaged from the United States to France by way of Le Havre as well.
That many instances in so few days and I had to learn something about the place! Here are some highlights from Wikipedia:
- Founded in 1517 by King Francis I, originally called Franciscopolis in his honor (thank goodness they changed the name!)
- Le Havre literally means ‘the harbor’ in French, which explains why Madame Leon Grandin and Julia Child both traveled through there on ship.
- 12th largest city in France
- The city was destroyed by the Germans during WWII and rebuilt in the modernist style, then declared a World Heritage Site in 2005.