Church of Isigny
|• Mayor (2008–2014)||Gérard Quesnel|
|Area1||17.44 km2 (6.73 sq mi)|
|• Density||160/km2 (410/sq mi)|
|INSEE/Postal code||14342 / 14230|
|Elevation||0–37 m (0–121 ft)
(avg. 30 m or 98 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.
Geography and Economy
Positioned at the bottom of the Baie des Veys, Isigny is an important milk production area, known for its AOC butter and cream, as well as its cheeses (Mimolette, Pont-l'Évêque, Camembert, Trésor d'Isigny, etc.) made by the Isigny Sainte Mère co-operative. Since the second half of the 20th century, oysters have been extensively cultivated nearby in the baie des Veys. A river, the Vire, passes through the commune.
The town is well positioned and owes its significance to its industrial history. The industrialisation of milk processing began at the start of the 19th century: many factories were built, especially by the Dupont d'Isigny family, which then diversified and created the famous Isigny caramels. More recently, the co-operative Isigny dairy has dominated. Meanwhile, the agricultural fairs and markets have also contributed to Isigny's reputation.
In 1924 Isigny was renamed Isigny-sur-Mer.
The port, often overlooked, was important in facilitating inshore navigation, allowing commercial and industrial activity to be developed and maintained (import of wood from the North; export coal from the mine at Littry and butter). Fishing was important until the end of the 1970s (mussel fishing and small vessels crewed by fishermen from the Hogues quarter). The famous "Caïeu d'Isigny" is a hymn to Isigny's sailors and fishermen, created in 1869 by Alfred Rossel.
Isigny was more than 60% destroyed by two bombardments on 8 June 1944 and has since been almost entirely rebuilt. Isigny played its part in the D-Day landings: twenty small Dutch coasters, Schuyts, were employed by the Americans to bring stores and equipment inland from the larger cargo ships that were moored off-shore. Charles de Gaulle paid its inhabitants visits on 14 June 1944 and 16 June 1946.
The Disney surname derives from the canton of Isigny. The earliest known ancestor of Walt Disney, with a similar name, was Jean-Christophe d'Isigny ("of Isigny"). "d'Isigny" was, over the generations, transformed into "Disney".
Isigny-sur-Mer is the seat of the canton of Isigny-sur-Mer, which includes 24 communes and has a population of 9,935 inhabitants.
The commune is twinned with:
- David Palumbo-Liu; Hans Ulrich Gumbrecht (1997). Streams of Cultural Capital: Transnational Cultural Studies. Stanford University Press. p. 204. ISBN 978-0-8047-3036-5.
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