Le château de Montréal

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Montreal Castle is an ancient 13th century castle.

The remains of the castle rise above the city of Montréal-la-Cluse, a commune (incorporated municipality) in the Ain department in the Rhone-Alpes region of eastern France. It is located in the historical region of Bugey and its inhabitants are known as the Montréalais. 

The castle was built in 1245 by Etienne II Thoire-Villars (1235-1279) near the parish of Sénoches on a steep rock he called Montreal (Mons Regalis, Mont Royal). He remained in the House until 1402 Thoire-Villars Humbert IV (1255-1301) began to build at the foot of the castle a city that bore the same name and to which he granted franchises to all who come settle there (letters patent from 1287) . The walls were erected between 1317 and 1353.

In 1402, Philip of Burgundy, known as "Philip the Bold," did occupy Montreal and all the castles in the area (Arbent, Matafelon Brion Fortress de Beauvoir, Cerdon, etc ...) following the refusal of Humbert VII to pay tribute to some of his possessions. By deed dated Castle Trevoux 14024 October 29, Humbert VII last name Thoire-Villars thus resolved to give up to the sum of 100,000 gold florins. All possessions to Count Amadeus VIII of Savoy. It came fully in possession of his land than September 13, 1414 following negotiations with Philip the Bold. Fortification works made ​​this place "the capital city of the mountain possessions" of the counts and dukes of Savoy. His successors retained the lordship united in their area until 1523

On 02.11.1523, the Duke Charles III gave Montreal, with right of redemption, Laurent Gorrevod; this clause was quickly applied. On 18/09/1565, Emmanuel Philibert gave Montreal to Charles House, Baron Meximieux with right of redemption; Then in 1566 he gave the right to Oddinet Louis, Lord of Montfort who applied the 07/02/1570 and the 07/22/1570 could obtain the rank of county in Montreal. On 12/10/1574, Louis Oddinet bequeathed it to his nephew George of Mouxi, lord of St. Paul.

The war between France and Savoy demonstrated the strategic importance of the Citadel MONTREAL. In 1602, King Henry IV ordered the demolition of the castle. In 1622, Louis XIII had it rebuilt the castle and installed a garrison. In 1635, Major Antoine de DOUGLAS was ordered to demolish the castle again. His son, Charles bought DOUGLAS County MONTREAL 1757 MONTREAL Thus entered the DOUGLAS family who lived a more modern castle built in the foothills of MONTREAL. This castle was acquired by the town in 2000.

In 1622, Louis Chamber of Seyssel took the stronghold of Montreal, which was in the hands of his descendants until 1720, when it was sold to Bernard Bude; the heirs of the latter yielded on 04/13/1757, for 60,000 florins, Charles Joseph Douglas, Lord of Mépillat, Chiloup and Hautepierre, captain of the regiment Royal Scots, whose son, Louis Archambaud Douglas (1758-1842), was the last lord Count of Montreal; he built a new castle on the plain near the city. This castle was acquired by the municipality of Montreal-Cluse during the year 2000.

Pierre Archimbaud de Douglas, born 1758 in Montreal, Canada, is said to have inherited the Château de Montréal, and probably his title of Count. He was a Knight of the Order of Saint-Maurice and Saint-Lazare, lord of Terrebonne and Beauregard.

He received the Legion of Honor from S.A.R. Monsieur during his visit to Bourg in 1814. He was elected deputy of Ain on August 22, 1815.

He died in Montréal on February 22, 1842.

Le château de Montréal est un ancien château fort, du xiiie siècle.

Les vestiges dominent la ville de Montréal-la-Cluse dans le département de l'Ain en région Rhône-Alpes.

Le château aurait été érigé en 1245 par Etienne II de Thoire-Villars (1235 – 1279) à proximité de la paroisse de Sénoches sur un roc escarpé qu’il appela Montréal (Mons Regalis ; Mont Royal). Il resta au sein de la Maison de Thoire-Villars jusqu’en 1402. Humbert IV (1255 – 1301) entreprit de faire construire au pied du château une ville qui porta le même nom et à laquelle il concéda des franchises à tous ceux qui viendraient s’y établir (lettres patentes de 1287). Des remparts furent érigés entre 1317 et 1353.

En 1402, Philippe II de Bourgogne, dit « Philippe le Hardi », fit occuper Montréal ainsi que toutes les châteaux de la région (Arbent, Matafelon, Brion, forteresse de Beauvoir, Cerdon, etc,…) suite au refus d’Humbert VII de lui rendre hommage pour certaines de ses possessions. Par acte daté du château de Trévoux, le 29 octobre 1402, Humbert VII dernier nom de Thoire-Villars se résolue ainsi à céder pour la somme de 100.000 florins d'or toutes ses possessions à Amédée VIII Comte de Savoie. Ce dernier entra entièrement en possession de ses terres que le 13 septembre 1414 suite à des négociations avec Philippe le Hardi. Des travaux de fortification firent de cette place "la ville capitale des possessions de montagne" des comtes puis ducs de Savoie. Ses successeurs conservèrent la seigneurie unie à leur domaine, jusqu'en 1523

Le 02/11/1523, le duc Charles III céda Montréal, avec droit de rachat, à Laurent de Gorrevod ; cette clause fut rapidement appliquée. Le 18/09/1565, Emmanuel-Philibert céda Montréal à Charles de la Chambre, baron de Meximieux, avec droit de rachat ; il céda ensuite en 1566 ce droit à Louis Oddinet, seigneur de Montfort qui l’appliqua le 02/07/1570 et put obtenir le 22/07/1570 le rang de comté à Montréal. Le 12/10/1574, Louis Oddinet le légua à son neveu Georges de Mouxi, seigneur de Saint-Paul.

Le château féodal fut démantelé en 1602, puis complètement détruit en 1635.

En 1622, Louis de la Chambre de Seyssel reprit le fief de Montréal qui fut aux mains de ses descendants jusqu’en 1720, année où il fut vendu à Bernard de Budé ; les héritiers de ce dernier le cédèrent, le 13/04/1757, pour la somme de 60 000 livres1, à Charles-Joseph de Douglas, seigneur de Mépillat, Chiloup et Hautepierre, capitaine au régiment Royal-Ecossais, dont le fils, Louis Archambaud de Douglas (1758-1842), fut le dernier seigneur comte de Montréal ; ce dernier fit bâtir un nouveau château dans la plaine à proximité de la ville. Ce château a été acquis par la commune de Montréal-la Cluse au cours de l’année 2000. 

In 1601, while the Savoy rule in Bugey draws to a close, he (???) returned to King Henry IV to bring the province to FRANCE, and this time for most of the department of Ain.
And immediately manifest themselves about the castle MONTREAL-FRANCE, inconsistency and French lightness. On the report of Baron LUX, Henry IV ordered the demolition of several fortified places MONTREAL the number.; eight hundred men recruited by chores in County MONTREAL work tirelessly for a month to raze the fortress to its foundations. After that, we see that the Franche-Comté border is nearby, the Franche-Comté belongs to Spain, which may one day declare war on FRANCE, and there is an urgent need to rebuild the MONTREAL fortress. A document from 1622 shows:
"Castle sits MONTREAL and raised on a rock, and owned by Her Majesty LOUIS XIII;
which was rebuilt again after just a few years, and by his command, his fees will maintain a garrison of soldiers.
"The city of MONTREAL, sits at the foot of the rock on the side of the morning, which is a small village, which formerly was enclosed by walls, but now, the biggest part thereof are ruined and fallen down. .. "

In 1635, war was declared between FRANCE and SPAIN, Antoine Duglas governor by King Castle MONTREAL, receives the Governor of Burgundy strange note as follows: (in old French)

Mr. Duglas,
Desiring that the chasteau MONTREAL or Razé according to the intention of the King, I actually ship ay my committee to proceed with the demolition dictates, the Bugey syndicqs the country with whom I ay fit to employ you said works, you have included in ditte commission, whereby you manquerés together with syndicqs said, to no earlier razer and demolish said chasteau and fill ditches Therein, so that the intention of His Majesty, touching razement said, is fully executed, and this reduced space in a condition of being unable to bring any harm to his service.
Intended the artillery and ammunition that are audict chasteau MONTREAL, for the town of Bourg en Bresse pieces, I ordered ay to Mr. Besson, Chastellain icelle and trustee of the country Bresse to ship audict place to remove all artillery and ammunition, which you put into his hands, for inventory drawn up at the bottom which said Besson parts will give dudict empties the container inventory, both to the King as any other.
Promise me you employerez cestus to share with affection and loyalty vostres ordinary, I Feray you presnte more expesse and will content myself to make sure I am, Sir GLAS of your best amy

Monsieur DUGLAS,
Désirant que le chasteau de MONTREAL, soit razé suivant l'intention du Roy, j'ay fait expédier ma commission, pour procéder à la dicte démolition, aux syndicqs du pays du Bugey, avec lesquels j'ay jugé à propos de vous employer auxdits ouvrages, vous ayant compris dans la ditte commission, suivant laquelle vous ne manquerés, conjointement avec lesdits syndicqs, de faire au plus tôt razer et démolir ledit chasteau et combler les fossés d'iceluy, en sorte que l'intention de Sa Majesté, touchant ledit razement, soit entièrement exécutée, et cette place réduite en estat de ne pouvoir apporter aucun préjudice à son service.
Ayant destiné les pièces d'artillerie et munitions de guerre qui sont audict chasteau de MONTREAL, pour le ville de BOURG EN BRESSE, j'ay commandé au sieur BESSON, chastellain d'icelle et syndic du pays de Bresse, à se transporter audict lieu pour retirer toutes les pièces d'artillerie et munitions, lesquelles vous lui mettrez entre les mains, par inventaire qui sera dressé, au bas duquel ledit BESSON vous donnera descharge du contenant dudict inventaire, tant envers le Roy que tous autres.

Jacques Marie Gabriel "Henri" de DOUGLAS
Né le 16 août 1889 - Montréal-la-Cluse (01460), Fr-010, Ain, Rhône-Alpes, FRANCE
Décédé le 11 décembre 1924 - Paris (75012), Fr-750112, Paris (Seine), Ile-de-France, FRANCE , à l’âge de 35 ans
Sous directeur de banque, Chevalier de la Légion d'honneur, Croix de guerre 1914-1918,

Jacques Théodore Sholto de DOUGLAS 1844-1925
Yvonne Marie Félix LE GENTIL de PAROY 1848-1905


Sholto de Douglas was mayor of Montreal 1858-1865



See also:

  • Francois-Prosper Douglas, Chevalier de Douglas
  • The Douglas Chapel
  • The Douglas family in France
  • Knights of Malta



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