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La Roche-Sur-Yon

LA ROCHE-SUR-YON, a town of western France, capital of the department of Vendee, on an eminence on the right bank of the Yon, 48 m. S. of Nantes on the railway to Bordeaux. Pop. (1906) town 10,666, commune 13,685. The castle of La Roche, which probably existed before the time of the crusades, and was frequently attacked or taken in the Hundred Years' War and in the wars of religion, was finally dismantled under Louis XIII. When Napoleon in 1804 made this place, then of no importance, the chief town of a department, the stones from its ruins were employed in the erection of the administrative buildings, which, being all produced at once after a regular plan, have a monotonous effect. The equestrian statue of Napoleon I. in an immense square overlooking the rest of the town; the statue of General Travot, who was engaged in the " pacification " of La Vendee; the museum, with several paintings by P. Baudry, a native artist, of whom there is a statue in the town, are the only objects of interest. Napoleon- Vendee and Bourbon- Vendee, the names borne by the town according to the dominance of either dynasty, gave place to the original name after the revolution of 1870. The town, is the seat of a prefect and a court of assizes, and has a tribunal of first instance, a chamber of commerce, a branch of the Bank of France, a lycee for boys and training colleges for both sexes. It is a market for farm-produce, horses and cattle, and has flour-mills. The dog fairs of La Roche are well known.

Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)

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