Chécy, Friends of the vine (Translation in progress)

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n France, Orléans is the northernmost town on the Loire:
  • surrounded by the rich farmland of Beauce,
  • close to Sologne on the South,
  • controlling the Loire, and as such…
  • strategic point for crossing the river, being the closest to Paris.
Taking advantage of this remarkable geographical position, the Gauls had implanted there the town Genabum, an important commercial city, being with Chartres one of the two main towns of the Carnutes.
After its capture by Julius Caesar in 52 BC, it was renamed Aurelianis in the 3rd century to honor the emperor at the time. At the fall of the Roman Empire, the town suffered from the barbarian invasions, resisted to the armies of Attila in 451, and became the capital of a Frankish kingdom under the Merovingians to be joined in 613 to the kingdom of Neustria.
In the Middle Ages, Orléans was one of the three richest cities of France with Paris and Rouen. It became the capital city of the Robertians, Dukes of France and of their descendants, the first Capetian kings of France before giving up the title to Paris… and be relegated as a duchy in favour of the king's younger son. It was the capital of the former province of Orléanais until 1790, time of creation of the "Departements" or Districts.
For a long time, the prosperity of Orléans came from the fluvial traffic on the Loire, but towards end of the 19th century, after development of the railway and road transport Orléans lost most of the economic importance brought by navigation on the Loire.
Its proximity from Paris promoted a new economic development in the 1970s, with the establishment of many companies while, at the same time, opening the Parisian source of employment to residents of Orléans.
But the most significant historical event in the history of Orléans is still the taking of the Chatelet des Tourelles by Joan of Arc May 8, 1429 and the freeing of the town from the siege by the English. This victory was the first step in the reconquest of France by Charles VII and the beginning of the end of the Hundred Years War.
Since that time, Joan d'Arc has been object of a boundless admiration from the people and the event is commemorated by a big party every year in May.
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