In the vicinity
Memorial to the destroyed village of Fleury-devant-Douaumont, 2012. All rights reserved.
Numerous forts still exist in the area around the museum; they have now been preserved for one hundred years. Even though nature has reclaimed the land it lost, notably the forest that is the dominant feature here, the scars left by the Battle of Verdun remain visible. The Open-Air Museum provides visitors with a chance to see the battlefield from a different angle, by drawing on several different knowledge bases.
The destroyed village of Fleury-devant-Douaumont changed hands sixteen times during the fighting. It was razed to the ground – not a single house or street was left standing. In 1918, Fleury was declared a “village that died for France”. The Mémorial de Verdun was inaugurated there in 1967, on the site of the former railway station.
Fort Froideterre, although little known to the general public, played a crucial role in the defence of Verdun. Built of reinforced concrete, it contained quarters for approximately one hundred soldiers and was equipped with various defensive features (observation domes, machine guns, 75 mm gun turret). This concrete gun turret provided significant firepower, which helped to repulse a German attack on 23 June 1916.