Oignies

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Oignies
Oignies is located in France
Oignies
Oignies
Coordinates: 50°28′12″N 2°59′40″E / 50.47°N 2.9944°E / 50.47; 2.9944Coordinates: 50°28′12″N 2°59′40″E / 50.47°N 2.9944°E / 50.47; 2.9944
Country France
Region Nord-Pas-de-Calais
Department Pas-de-Calais
Arrondissement Lens
Canton Courrières
Intercommunality Communauté d'agglomération d'Hénin-Carvin
Government
 • Mayor (2008–2014) Jean-Pierre Corbisez
Area
 • Land1 5.52 km2 (2.13 sq mi)
Population (2006)
 • Population2 10,551
 • Population2 density 1,900/km2 (5,000/sq mi)
INSEE/Postal code 62637 / 62590
Elevation 23–33 m (75–108 ft)
(avg. 28 m or 92 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.

Oignies is a commune in the Pas-de-Calais department in the Nord-Pas-de-Calais region of France.

Geography[edit]

Oignies is a former coalmining town, nowadays a light industrial town, 10 miles (16 km) northeast of Lens, at the junction of the D46 and the D160 roads. The A1 autoroute passes through the commune, alongside a wooded and lake-filled parkland area.

History[edit]

Ancient times[edit]

The town of Oignies seems to have been inhabited since early Christian times. Then it was known as Ongniacume.

Coal is discovered[edit]

In the grounds of the Château of Mme De Clercq on the 7th June 1842 an Engineer, Monsieur Mulot, discovered the presence of coal, an economic godsend for the region which then developed a huge mining industry. This was the first discovery of coal in the region.

The two world wars[edit]

During The First World War, the town was occupied by the Germans. Shortly before their retreat from the territory in October 1918 they destroyed the town and coal mines.

Between 28 May 1940 and 2 September 1944, the town was once again occupied by the troops of Nazi Germany. Shortly after they arrived the occupying forces burned 380 houses and killed 80 civilians in revenge for the fierce resistance they met on the bridge of the Battery.

In 1919, Oignies saw the arrival in the town of Georges Clémenceau who came to bestow the "Croix de guerre". In 1948, it was the turn of Vincent Auriol accompanied by François Mitterrand who once again bestowed the cross on the town. He inaugurated a mausoleum remembering those 80 shot on 28 May 1940 and declared Oignies a "Ville Martyre" (martyred town).[1]

End of coal mining[edit]

On 21 December 1990, the last truck of coal was hoisted from the shaft 9 of Oignies. This well-publicized event marked the end of coal mining in the whole of the north of France.

Heraldry[edit]

Arms of Oignies
The arms of Oignies are blazoned :

Vert, a fess ermine. (Oignies, Beaucamps-Ligny, Estrées, Gruson and Wicres use the same arms.)



Population[edit]

Population history
1962 1968 1975 1982 1990 1999 2006
11,340 12,563 11,649 10,546 10,660 10531 10,551
Census count starting from 1962: Population without duplicates

Notable people[edit]

Places of interest[edit]

The coal mines
  • The church of St. Barthélemy, rebuilt along with most of the town, after the First World War.
  • The coalmining museum.
  • The chateau, dating from the sixteenth century.
  • The war memorial.

Twin towns[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Local history, Oignies town site consulted 10 Jan 09

External links[edit]