Monument to the ​​​Tavaux-et-Pontséricourt massacre





​​On 30 August 1944, in retaliation for several attacks by the Resistance, the village of Tavaux was partially destroyed by fire. Twenty civilians and one member of the Resistance, all aged between 7 and 87, were massacred.​

In the morning of 30 August 1944, fighting between Resistance fighters and young SS soldiers broke out in several places in the village of Tavaux. Several soldiers were wounded, a German officer and a soldier were killed, but others managed to escape to seek help.

Fearing German retaliation to these actions, the leader of the Resistance group, FFI Lieutenant Pierre Maujean, asked for help from neighbouring Resistance groups.

The German reprisal was not long in coming. On the afternoon of 30 August, the village of Tavaux was completely surrounded by German troops. Three Tiger tanks, two machine guns and one truckload of troops from the Adolph Hitler Division and the Hitlerjugend Division came to reinforce the soldiers.

All the houses and farms in the village were set on fire, with 86 houses completely destroyed by the flames. The SS also shot at everyone they came across, and twenty civilians (men, women, old people, children) were massacred. One Resistance fighter, Henri Mourain, also died of injuries sustained during the morning confrontations with the German soldiers.

On 31 August 1944, the village was liberated by the local Resistance fighters, who responded to Pierre Maujean's call for help. The American Army arrived in the early evening of that same day.

A memorial was erected on the square near the church, to commemorate the civilian victims and the deportees. The names of the 21 massacred were engraved there. A commemorative plaque, in honour of all victims of Nazi barbarism and the martyred villages of the Aisne, was erected near the church of Tavaux-et-Pontséricourt.

The municipality received the Resistance medal on 31 March 1947.


​​Tavaux-et-Pontséricourt​, ​​02250​