rochefort-en-terre-chateau.jpg
©Alessandro Gui
Castle ofRochefort-en-Terre

Castle of Rochefort‑en‑Terre

The castle was built on a rocky spur from which it was possible to watch over the Grées,
which was a strategic point of passage through these schistose hills.
From this tactical interest, the occupation of the site seems to have been present from the XI -th century.
Ancient vestiges from the Gallo-Roman period, such as tiles or coins, have been found.

The reign

of the Rocheforts

The first known lord is Abbon de Rochefort, in 1118.
This name already evokes the existence of a fortress.
The lords of Rochefort-en-Terre enriched and expanded their domain considerably by various alliances. In 1374,Jeanne de Rochefort and Jean de Rieux II married, and then became one of the most powerful families in the duchy of Brittany.

In1488,Jean VI de Rieux-Rochefort, who was leader of the Breton army, lost the battle of St-Aubin-du-Cormier against France Charles VIII, it was then that his fortresses were dismantled.

ThenAnne de Bretagne, having become queen, granted a compensation of 100,000 gold ecus, to her former guardian, which would allow her to renovate her castle of Rochefort.

From the seigniory

to the Revolution

The castle to was able to welcome within its bosom in the XVIth century, a prestigious guest, King François 1 er.
Then the castle was incendiated in 1594 during the Wars of Religion because it belonged to an illustrious Protestant family, the Coligny.

Thereafter the seigneury of Rochefort would belong to the Lorraine-Elbeuf, then to the Hay des Nétumières and later to Vincent-Exupère de Larlan who rehabilitated the castle in 1673.
In 1793 during the Revolution the castle would be pilled and taken by the Chouans and then by the soldiers of the Republic and will later be demolished by order of the departmental administration.
The castle will then become, only imposing ruins.

The times

of the revival

Alfred Klots will be a person who will bring much to the commune of Rochefort-en-Terre and its inhabitants. He will buy the property in 1907 and will take care to renovate the castle and add two towers as well as gotic and Renaissance dormers.

In 1918-1919, he will not hesitate to open its doors to the American Red Cross to make it a convalescent center for soldiers. His wife, as early as 1915, would work actively for the Fund for the Relief of French Wounded.

Despite the fact that the Klots family lived between America in the winter and Rochefort-en-Terre in the summer, they would be adopted by the people of Rochefort, who owed them much. Indeed the artist created an annual flowered window contest and invitedAmerican painters to paint portraits of the small city of character and made it atourist place.

Learn more about the castle and the Klots family

interactive guided tour

Close