Grande Carrière in Euville

The “Carrières d’Euville” are a unique site in Lorraine – thanks to the size of the quarries and their history.

It is located between the Meuse valley and the Meuse coast, which are perfect areas to discover geology, stonework and the life of quarry workers from the early 19th to the 20th century.

 

The Tourist Office of the Commercy area invites you to discover a story which was buried after the world wars – but which experienced a significant expansion and made Euville the richest town in France!

Events, visits, exhibitions, tours… discover the story of the “Carrières d’Euville”!


Cut stones have always been seen as a top-quality material. The wishes of the quarry workers to defy men and time can be felt throughout their use – as well as the stratification of the society.

 

150 million years ago – because of the continental drift – the Meuse, which was submerged nearly 1,000 meters deep, crossed  the Tropic of Cancer. From this period called “Jurassic” by geologists, we inherited crinoidal limestone formed by the accumulation of crinoid deposits and sea urchins who lived in the seabed.

At the end of the 19th century, these crinoidal limestone was exploited in about twenty quarries in the Commercy area. The most famous are located in Euville and Lérouville where around 1,500 persons worked with ultimate high-performance machines.

Then, the stones were sent throughout Europe. In Paris, they have been used in most of the monuments which were built since Napoleon III (Louvre, Grand and Petit Palais, Opéra, Gare de l’Est, Pont Alexandre III…). Nowadays, they are exploited only in Euville by the company Rocamat.

Exhibition “Euville stone, story of a myth”

This exhibition – which covers 600 m² in the cut workshop of the Grande Carrière in Euville – presents the story of these fifty years which made Euville famous. It shows how important is this quarry throughout the exploitation of local stone in the area of Commercy, but also throughout the human aspect of the work, the progression in know-how, and the social life it has created…


Going for a walk

The stone tour will take you towards a marked path to discover the site of the “Carrières d’Euville”.

This is an ideal walk for families. You will enjoy amazing sceneries thanks to the former quarries (they are called “La Sablière”) and the current quarry Rocamat which is still in operation.

Cross the forest, spend some time in places that will make you believe you are on a different planet.

Between vegetable and mineral world, the landscape of Euville will win you over!

During your walk you could meet some beautiful flowers! Indeed, the quarries of Euville house a wide population of orchids: 34 listed and protected species. You don’t have to pick them!

Especially in spring, it is a wonderful, rare stretch of shapes and colours which makes the limestone come alive.

Maybe you will be lucky enough to see them during a walk!

 

Relax

Holding centre “La Villasatel”

“La Villasatel” – which is located 200 meters away from the cut workshop of the Grande Carrière – houses a holding centre with 16 rooms from 2 to 6 beds and a room with fully-fitted kitchen.

It is perfect for weddings, birthday parties, hiking groups, school groups, but also for individuals with night or week packages.

 

See our package of services for accommodation and food for groups and individuals

Visit the website: www.villasatel.fr


For the anecdote… 

At the end of the 19th century, many workers set up in Commercy thanks to the development of the quarries. The school of Euville was located about 2 miles away and was overcrowded. Evariste Maillard – the mayor – decided with the town council to build a new school next to the quarries on March, 1897. Available areas were missing, that’s why the school was built on the forest in 1898. Gutton, the architect, has also built the city hall inspired by the Art Nouveau style in Euville and Charles Rusque was the contractor.

The school used to welcome up to 75 pupils including 34 children from 3 to 5 years old, whereas it had been designed to count only 50 pupils from 6 to 13 years old.

That’s why it was enlarged in 1902 with three new rooms: a second classroom and two rooms for the doctor’s office.

In the early 1970s, this former school became a summer camp for the APAJH – the association for adults and young people with disabilities of Bar-le-Duc. The building was equipped with bedrooms, kitchens, showers… and called the “APAJH”. In 2001, the town of Euville took back the building thanks to a long-term lease and set up a tourist shelter – but also the school canteen from 2003 to 2009. Since 2009, the centre regained its original name – “la Villasatel” – and the Tourist Office of the Commercy area manages its activities as the stone tour.

For schools… 

Activities for school groups

The partnership for the development of the stone tour organises several recreational and educational activities.

 

All the activities we offer are approved by the Regional Park of Lorraine with its label “Charte education” which is a quality guarantee regarding reception and pedagogical support.

See our workshop offers per day or our themed school trips which include on-site accommodation. 

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