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Place Abbatucci
Place Abbatucci
Coat of arms of Huningue
Coat of arms
Huningue is located in France
Coordinates: 47°35′31″N 7°35′04″E / 47.5919°N 7.5844°E / 47.5919; 7.5844Coordinates: 47°35′31″N 7°35′04″E / 47.5919°N 7.5844°E / 47.5919; 7.5844
Country France
Region Alsace
Department Haut-Rhin
Arrondissement Mulhouse
Canton Huningue
Intercommunality Trois Frontières
 • Mayor (2008–2014) Jean-Marc Deichtmann
 • Land1 2.86 km2 (1.10 sq mi)
Population (2008)
 • Population2 6,503
 • Population2 density 2,300/km2 (5,900/sq mi)
INSEE/Postal code 68149 / 68330
Dialling codes 0389
Elevation 242–259 m (794–850 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.

Huningue (French pronunciation: ​[ynɛ̃ɡ]; German: Hüningen; Alsatian: Hinige) is a commune in the Haut-Rhin department of Alsace in north-eastern France. Huningue is a northern suburb of the Swiss city of Basel. It also borders Germany (Weil am Rhein, a suburb of Basel located in Germany). In 2008 it had a population of 6503 people. The main square of the town is the Place Abbatucci, named after the Corsican-born French general Jean Charles Abbatucci who unsuccessfully defended it in 1796 against the Austrians and died here. Huningue is noted for its pisciculture and is a major producer of fish eggs.


A diagram of Huningue's former fortifications

Huningue was first mentioned in a document in 826. Huningue was wrested from the Holy Roman Empire by the duke of Lauenburg in 1634 by the Treaty of Westphalia, and subsequently passed by purchase to Louis XIV. Louis XIV ordered the construction of the Huningue Fortress and was fortified by Vauban (1679–1681) and a bridge was built across the Rhine.[1] Construction of the fortress required the displacement of the population on the island of Aoust and the surrounding area. In 1796 to 1797, Huningue was besieged by the Austrians.[2] General Abbatucci held the fort for three months before being killed. In 1815, Napoleon's army resisted three months and a half against the Bavarians. Huningue was besieged for the third time in 1815 and General Barbanègre headed a garrison of only 500 men against 25,000 Austrians.[2] At its surrender to the Habsburg Empire on August 26, 1815, the city was a ruin and was dismantled at the request of Basel.[3]

The building of the Huningue channel in 1828 made the area more navigable (the entire channel system was completed in 1834);[4] it provided water to the Rhone-Rhine canal. The Huningue canal is a feeder arm of this Rhone-Rhine Canal; it enters the river opposite the main dock basins.[5] Only about a kilometre of the canal is still navigable, leading to the town of Kembs.[6]

In 1871, the town passed, with Alsace-Lorraine, to the German Empire.[7] Alsace-Lorraine returned to France after the First World War. It was evacuated in 1939, retaken by Germany in 1940 with some 60% of the town destroyed during World War II, and finally returned to France once again in 1945. In 2007, a bridge over the Rhine, linking Huningue wirh Weil am Rhein, Germany was built.


Huningue is situated on the left bank of the Rhine, and is an ancient place which grew up around a stronghold placed to guard the passage of the river. It is a northern suburb of Basel.


Huningue is noted for its pisciculture and is a major producer of fish eggs.[8][9] Several chemical, plastics and pharmaceutical companies have factories in Huningue, mainly Swiss firms such as Novartis, Ciba, Clariant, Hoffmann-La Roche, Weleda etc. The Rhine port is managed by the Chamber of Commerce and the industry of Mulhouse, which lies to the northwest of Huningue.

Notable landmarks[edit]

Since March 2007 Huningue is connected with Weil am Rhein via an arch bridge. With 248 meters of length it is the longest of its kind for pedestrians and cyclist. Because the bridge connects the two countries France and Germany and is near Switzerland it is named the Three country bridge or Passerelle des Trois Pays in French.

  • Musée historique et militaire : The military and historical museum evokes the military life of the ancient fortress of Vauban. The museum is housed in a former residence of the intendant of the place and commissary.
  • L'ancienne église de garnison : the former garrison church was built according to plans of the engineer Jacques Tarade; the church which dominates the Place Abattucci is now disused as a church. The building occasionally is host to concerts of chamber music. It also serves as a polling station during elections. Since 1938, the facades, the bell tower and the roof have been listed in the inventory of historical monuments.
  • Parc des Eaux Vives and the Wheelhouse : a park with an artificial torrent, with kayaking, canoeing, and white water rafting.
  • Le Triangle - The Triangle is a cultural complex covering 5540 square metres, divided into 21 activity rooms. Created by architect Jean-Marie Martini, it was inaugurated in February 2002. In addition to the many varied shows (dance, theater, music, circus arts, comedy), the Triangle also hosts exhibitions (sculpture, painting, writing) and a forum for the exchange of information and entertainment for the young . In addition, regular tea dances are organized, philosophy workshops and hearings of the Academy of Arts (music, dance, theater), conferences and meetings with artists.

Notable people[edit]



  1. ^ Malte-Brun, Conrad (1831). Universal Geography, Or, a Description of All the Parts of the World, on a New Plan: Spain, Portugal, France, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Belgium, and Holland. A. Black. p. 395. Retrieved 26 October 2011. 
  2. ^ a b Jaques, Tony (2007). Dictionary of Battles and Sieges: F-O. Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 462. ISBN 978-0-313-33538-9. Retrieved 26 October 2011. 
  3. ^ Jerrold, Blanchard (1874). The life of Napoleon III: derived from state records, from unpublished family correspondence, and from personal testimony; with family portraits in the possession of the imperial family, and facsimiles of letters of Napoleon I., Napoleon III., Queen Hortense, &c. Longmans, Green. p. 343. Retrieved 26 October 2011. 
  4. ^ The Encyclopaedia Britannica, or Dictionary of Arts, Sciences, and General Literature. Black. 1842. p. 6. Retrieved 26 October 2011. 
  5. ^ Harbour authority (1 January 1955). The Dock and harbour authority. Foxlow Publications, ltd. pp. 138, 142. Retrieved 26 October 2011. 
  6. ^ McKnight, Hugh (September 2005). Cruising French Waterways. Sheridan House, Inc. p. 109. ISBN 978-1-57409-210-3. Retrieved 26 October 2011. 
  7. ^ Pounds, Norman John Greville (1963). Political geography. McGraw-Hill. p. 249. Retrieved 26 October 2011. 
  8. ^ Chambers's encyclopædia: a dictionary of universal knowledge. W. & R. Chambers. 1868. p. 559. Retrieved 26 October 2011. 
  9. ^ Dallas, Eneas Sweetland (1862). Once a week. Bradbury & Evans. p. 206. Retrieved 26 October 2011. 
  • Tschamber, Geschichte der Stadt und ehemaligen Festung Hüningen (St Ludwig, 1894)
  • Latruffe, Huningue et Bale devant les traits de i8i~ (Paris, 1863)

External links[edit]