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On November 27, 1870, during the Franco-Prussian War, Gentelles was the scene of a skirmish between the 20th Battalion of Chasseurs and the Germans. There were 25 fatalities, of which 12 were French, who are buried in the cemetery, where later a memorial was erected.
During World War I, the village was at the centre of fighting during the Battle of the Somme and was all but destroyed.