4 juin 2018

History of the memorial

History of the memorial



All the events that marked the history of the Armistice Memorial and its carriage


4 juNE 1914

Carriage 2419D is brought into service

22 identical restaurant carriages are put into service by the Compagnie Internationale des Wagons-Lits. Carriage 2419D is sent to the Gare Montparnasse station serving the western lines.

28 October 1918

Carriage 2419D is requisitioned

Carriage 2419D joins the command train placed at the disposal of Marshal Foch.

11 november 1918

Carriage 2419D becomes the “Armistice Carriage”

On 11 November 1918, Marshal Foch and Admiral Wemyss, representing the Allies, and Minister of State Erzberger, representing Germany, sign the armistice at 5:15 AM. It will take effect at 11 AM.

11 NOVEMBER 1918

10:45 am : Augustin Trébuchon

Augustin Trébuchon is the last WWI French soldier to be declared killed.

11 NOVEMBer 1922

Inauguration of the Armistice Clearing

At the entrance to an avenue stretching 250 metres is erected the Alsace-Lorraine Monument in pink sandstone from the Vosges. Within the clearing, a granite slab reads: “Here, on 11 November 1918, the criminal pride of the German empire was vanquished by the free peoples it had sought to enslave.”


Exhibition of the carriage at Les Invalides

 Symbolizing France’s victory over Germany, the carriage is exhibited in the main courtyard at Les Invalides, capturing the public’s attention

November 1922

The carriage is restored

 During 6 years, sitting outside at Les Invalides, the carriage must brave the bad weather. Newspapers finally cry out. H. Fleming, an American billionaire, offers 10,000 gold francs for the carriage’s restoration and relocation to the clearing.

11 NOVEMBer 1927

Inauguration of the shelter

Georges Leygues, representing the French government, inaugurates the shelter housing the Armistice Carriage, in the presence of Marshal Foch and numerous dignitaries.

26 september 1937

Inauguration of the Marshal Foch statue

The work by Firmin Michelet is inaugurated in the presence of a multitude of civil and military authorities.

10 MAy-22 JUne 1940

The Battle of France

In the space of 40 days, the German army occupies Holland, Belgium, Luxembourg and a portion of France.

21 JUNe 1940

Reading of the Armistice conditions

On 21 June, Hitler, surrounded by his general staff, welcomes within the carriage (reinstalled in the clearing) the French delegation led by General Huntzinger. After the reading of the Armistice conditions, Hitler leaves the clearing.

22 JUne 1940

The Signature of the Armistice

On 22 June, the Armistice is signed by Generalfeldmarschall Keitel and General Huntzinger.

JUly 1940

The carriage and monuments are taken to Germany

On Hitler’s order, the carriage is transported to Germany, as are the Sacred Slab and the Alsace-Lorraine Monument. The Marshal Foch statue is spared and protected during the clearing’s complete destruction.

1940 - 1945

The carriage in Germany

The carriage is initially exhibited in Berlin. It is then transferred to the Ohrdruf prison camp to protect it from the Berlin bombings.


End of the Second World War

The carriage is destroyed in the accidental burning of the Crawinkel railway station next to the Ohrdruf prison camp.

11 NOVEMBer 1946

The monuments recovered

Recovered in Germany, the monuments are brought back to France in July 1946. They are reinstalled in the Armistice Clearing in time to commemorate 11 November 1946.

16 SEPTEMBer 1950

The carriage’s installation

A carriage from the same series is presented by the Compagnie Internationale des Wagons-Lits. It is identically furnished and fitted out and installed within a new shelter attached to a rotunda built to house 800 stereoscopic views.


Museum extension

 An extension allows for the creation of two exhibition rooms focusing on the 1918 and 1940 Armistices.

1 st march 2018

Reopening of the Armistice Memorial

Following four months of closure due to extension work, the Armistice Memorial reopens its doors with new exhibition rooms housing the old showcases prior to the new scenography’s inauguration planned for the summer of 2018.