Last modified: 2021-04-24 by ivan sache
Keywords: altkirch |
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Flag of Altkirch - Image by Olivier Touzeau, 18 October 2020
The municipality of Altkirch (5,698 inhabitants in 2018; 954 ha), located 20 km of Mulhouse, is the capital of Sundgau.
Altkirch (lit., Old Church) was founded in the 12th century by the Counts of
Ferrette who had the St. Morand priory built.
From 1215, Altkirch was protected by ramparts with towers and three gates. The
Schlaghaus Tower and the Belfort Gate, aka Old Gate, are vestiges of the fortification.
In 1648, Altkirch became French by the treaties of Westphalia.
During World War I, on the morning of 7 August 1914, the French army seized the town of Altkirch and moved north the following day, gaining control of Mulhouse thanks to a strategic withdrawal from the Germans. The town was decorated on 2 November 1921 with the 1914-1918 War Cross.
During the Second World War, the 1st French Army, commanded by General de Lattre de Tassigny, liberated Altkirch on 21 November 1944 in its victorious march to the Rhine and the Danube.
Olivier Touzeau, 18 October 2020
The flag of Altkirch (photo,
photo) is a banner of the canting municipal arms.
The oldest known seal of Altkirch, dated to the late 13th century (1292 and 1296), shows a simple church. The design was subsequently embellished (1472 and 1720), the colors being first shown in the Armorial Général. The grant dated 24 July 1699 describes the arms as "Azure a church argent roofed gules on a base vert the bell-tower shaped like a square tower roofed gules and ensigned by a cross or." The grant kept in the Municipal Archives, however, shows a different drawing from D'Hozier's Armorial kept in the National Library.
[Armorial des communes du Haut-Rhin]
Pascal Vagnat & Ivan Sache, 18 October 2020