Where three French generals rest in peace: the Protestant cemetery of Puylaurens
How many generals are buried in your local graveyard? I have found three in mine, all from the same family!
But back to the generals. Jean and Louis were brothers, both born in Puylaurens in the 1860s. Louis survived two world wars and died peacefully in 1960 at the age of 94. His brother was less fortunate. Throughout the Great War, Brigadier-General Jean Rey commanded the 5th brigade of dragoons. On the day of the armistice he was still alive, but he died five weeks later on 17 December 1918 from an illness he had contracted during the war.
During Napoleon’s exile to Elba, General Rey was given a knighthood by Louis XVIII and appointed military commander for the department of Basses-Pyrénées (now called Pyrénées-Atlantique). He remained in post during Napoleon’s Hundred Days, but after Waterloo he was placed on the reserve list. Under Louis-Philippe, he was appointed military commander of several other departments until his retirement in 1832.
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Colin Duncan Taylor
"I have been living in the south of France for 20 years, and through my books and my blog, I endeavour to share my love for the history and gastronomy of Occitanie and the Pyrenees."