Traffic Out of a Dream
Traffic jams at the beginning of the 20th century? At that time, seek one could not even have conceived of this future problem. At the intersection of rue François I and Avenue George V, viagra a picture reflects only a tranquil atmosphere, nearly a rural scene with a horse at rest and pedestrians crossing the street at a leisurely pace. The isolated vehicle enjoys an enviable amount of space in which to maneuver: traffic signs and lights were still non-existent. But the appearance of the intersection has changed only moderately. In this picture postcard, one recognizes the Haussmann-style buildings with their long balconies stretching along the façade of the second and fifth floors. The photo was taken in front of what is today the Hermès Sellier boutique. The private mansion on the right has undergone a few transformations. Its main floor in glass is now the home of Bulgari.
Rue François 1er
The Sweet Life
Crinoline dresses and refi ned hats in the shadow of the gas lamps: A certain art de vivre
radiates from this lovely colored photo. It depicts a scene during the reign of Napoléon
III, at the beginning of the third Republic, an era when certain Parisian neighborhoods
still felt like villages. A very unusual village perhaps, since the architecture here is decidedly monumental. two elegant ladies stroll through the intersection of Rue
François-I and Rue Pierre-Charron. Farther on, to the right, is the start of a little street,
rue de Cérisoles (less than 100 meters long), then, still farther on, the rue Marbeuf.
these streets are paved with cobblestones: tarmac appeared in the 1850’s but would
not be commonly used until later. Sidewalks, another recent innovation, are already in
place here. like the buildings, the sidewalks obey the rules of Haussman proportions,
occupying 2/5ths of the space separating the two sides of the street, with the remaining
3/5ths reserved for the road. In the foreground on the left sidewalk is the Hotel Powers,
and across the street, the Hotel Château Frontenac.
Rue François 1er
In the Name of King François
If this street is named for one of the most loved kings of France, it is for a good reason. the king never lived here: he preferred his dear loire Valley, the palaces of the louvre, or even more, the chateau in Fontainebleau. But the special place in the hearts of the French that François I held inspired developers during the fi rst decades of the 19th century. With the French Restauration in full swing, what could be a better selling argument than a royal reference. So it was thus from Moret-sur-loing, a village that would later become a favorite among impressionist painters, that an elegantly decorated little house, dubbed the Maison François I, would be moved to Paris. the street and the square which were under construction would, of course, be named for the monarch. Don’t try to fi nd this house today: In the middle of the 20th century the Maison François I was once again moved, retracing its path. today it can be found in its original home in Moret-sur-loing.
1910, a Very Wet Year
If Paris couldn’t go to Venice, Venice would come to Paris. At least, this is the impression given by this striking photo of the fl ood of 1910. the water began rising after torrential rains at the beginning of the year, and fl ooded the quays on January 23 before reaching its highest level on January 28th. the Champs Elysées was fl ooded and the water even reached the Saint-lazare train station, and spread to rue du Bac, rue de l’Université and Boulevard Saint-Germain. the quayside roads were, of course, submerged, as were all of the neighboring streets. And the Avenue Montaigne took on the appearance of the Canal du Midi. life went on nonetheless. the population went to work in boats and deliveries continued in high-sided carts that became amphibious. But the majority of the plays and spectacles announced on the city’s Morris columns were cancelled.