Oradour-sur-Glane Tram

The photo above shows the tram at the passenger station, which is shown on the right. The main tram track is in the foreground; the tram is on the sidetrack in front of the station. The tram station is located in the Upper Town at the northern end of the main street, Rue de Emile Desourteaux.

Sarah Farmer wrote the following description of the tram in her book entitled "Martyred Village":

Five trams a day ran in each direction from Limoges to St.-Junien, with a stop in Oradour. The trip from Limoges to Oradour took a little over an hour. On Saturdays during the war years, residents of Limoges came by tram to provision themselves with meat and other items that were in short supply in the city. The Limogeauds often made the trip into a day's outing, spending the morning shopping and then taking the afternoon to picnic or fish on the banks of Glane, which passed under a bridge at the southern entrance to the town.

While the SS soldiers were in the midst of destroying the village, a tram arrived from Limoges and was stopped before it crossed the river Glane. The 22 residents of Oradour-sur-Glane, who were returning home, were taken off the tram, but not the other passengers. The Oradour residents were held for two hours and then told that they were free to go. One young girl was given a bicycle by one of the soldiers so that she could leave faster. The tram returned to Limoges, arriving around midnight.

The photo above shows the bridge over the Glane river. On the extreme left is the church with its spires still intact. Women in the village are washing their clothes on the banks of the river.

In her book entitled "Martyred Village," Sarah Farmer gives the following description of Oradour-sur-Glane:

In the interwar period, Oradour was also a lively center of sociability. There were numerous cafes, three musical clubs, a soccer team, and two veterans' associations from the Great War. On Sundays, clubs from Limoges would come by tram to spend the day on the banks of the Glane, where they organized fishing contests. Commercial and social connections created a tightly knit extended community. Local farmers came into Oradour to conduct all manner of business. Their wives ventured into town less frequently but could be seen on the semimonthly market days going to the local grocer, or sometimes stopping at the fabric shop of Monsieur Dupic in the main street. The commune's elementary schools were in town, so many children from outlying hamlets walked into Oradour to go to school.

The photo below shows the intersection of the main street, Rue de Desourteaux, with the Les Bordes road. The tree in the background is the Tree of Liberty, planted in 1848, a time when there were left-wing revolutions throughout Europe. To the right of the tree in the background is a building that was called the Oak cafe when this photo was taken. At the time of the massacre, this was the Milord Cafe and Hotel. The car in the photo appears to be a model that was manufactured in the early 1930ies.

The photo above shows Les Bordes road at the intersection of the main street, as it looks today. Note the tree that is still there.



SS officers


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