Paris and inner ring departments
|• Mayor (2008–2014)||Jean-Pierre Spilbauer|
|• Land1||3.35 km2 (1.29 sq mi)|
|• Population2 density||4,600/km2 (12,000/sq mi)|
|INSEE/Postal code||94015 / 94360|
|Elevation||36–100 m (118–328 ft)|
1 French Land Register data, which excludes lakes, ponds, glaciers > 1 km² (0.386 sq mi or 247 acres) and river estuaries.2 Population without double counting: residents of multiple communes (e.g., students and military personnel) only counted once.
Prehistory and early history
Bry's name comes from the Celtic word Briw, which means a bridge or a river crossing. The area has been inhabited since Neolithic times. The town's motto, which features on its coat of arms, is "Moult viel que Paris" - old French for "Much older than Paris".
In 1903, archeologist Adrien Mentienne uncovered the bones of a large bovine which died 15,000 years ago. In 1982, the skeleton of a woman who died in the 5th century BC was uncovered beneath the playground of a school in Bry. It is now housed in the town's museum.
From that century onwards, there was a permanent human presence where Bry now stands. In 1886, a necropolis was found which contained pottery, Gaul and Frankish weaponry, silver and gold jewelry, and coins, dating from the Gaul era to the Merovingian. The first known written mention of the town named Bry was in a charter signed by King Charles the Bald in 861.
The first church was built in 1130.
From the feudal era to modern times
In 1404, Robert de Châtillon, cousin of King Charles VI, was Bry's feudal lord. His castle no longer stands, and its exact location is uncertain. Bry's current château was built in the 1690s. It became the town hall in 1866. It was rebuilt after the Franco-Prussian War of 1870.
- Photographer Louis Daguerre died in Bry-sur-Marne in 1851 and a monument marks his grave there.
- Laurel Zuckerman, author
Bry's most treasured artwork is a diorama painted by Louis Daguerre. The painting changes as each day wears on, mimicking daylight and night-time; the painted candlesticks light up at night. It is kept in the local church.
- (French) Official town web page on the town's history
- (French) Official town web page on the coat of arms
- see reference note n°1
- (French) All about Daguerre's diorama
- (French) About the diorama on the town's website
- "Mentions légales." Institut national de l'audiovisuel. Retrieved on 5 May 2011. "Siège social et adresse postale : 4 avenue de l'Europe - 94366 Bry-sur-Marne cedex "
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Bry-sur-Marne.|