Photos of the dismantling of the fleet, maps of the shipyard… these remarkable donations to the municipal archives of La Seyne

You may have old documents in boxes or in the attic that may be of interest to the municipal archive service. Regularly, the latter actually receives donations from individuals or associations, appraises them and slowly digitizes them so that everyone can access them through a website recently put online. This is a donation made by Mr.I Marie-France Fiol, former school principal of La Seyne, sent about fifty photographs of the dismantling of the fleet in Toulon. But not only that.

Explanations with Alan Virot, head of the municipal archive service.

How unusual is this collection of photos of the dismantling of the fleet in Toulon?

Many photos of this event are circulating, but MI Fiol is the most comprehensive we’ve ever seen. It includes approximately fifty photographs, most 8.5 cm x 6 cm, others 11 cm x 7.5 cm (these were the usual formats of the time). We see boats billowing out big plumes of smoke and others sinking. Almost all the pictures have the names of the ships written on the back (but a few are not identified). This is a nice collection full of numbers and they are original (not reproduction) but not unique. I have already seen some of these photos in other funds.

Do we know where these photos came from?

We only know that MI Fiol got them from his father. They are believed to be part of a series of photos taken during the event and several copies sold as “souvenirs”. However, it remains interesting because it helps document this page of history. This may bring additional items to people who are interested in the topic.

What condition are these photos in and how do you store them?

Some are a little bent because they took in the humidity at some point, but they are in good condition. We put them all in protective storage bags, which are made of plastic that will never degrade or damage the photos.

And these pockets themselves are placed in neutral cardboard, in a special folder that protects against mold and dust, where they can remain for years without spoiling.

How can the public get involved?

All these photos have been scanned in high resolution, which allows you to zoom in to find any detail. Therefore, everyone can look at them on our website and maybe provide additional information about, for example, unknown boats.

Gift M.I Did Fiol include other documents?

Yes, he gave us a commemorative album of a hundred photographs of the summer camps of the little Seynois in Presles (Iser) from 1968 to 1984. (1). We rarely see the daily life of the caterers we meet (as opposed to the photos of the children being held by the families). They are school catering workers of the city who go to prepare food with the colonies and take their photos. The pictures are captioned, names are shown and we are trying to recover their surname. It is interesting for us because it changes the institutional documents we are used to. This is a rare testimony and is in line with our mission, which is primarily to preserve the documentary products of municipal services, but we are also interested in private archives related to our area.

Are the shipyard archives also online?

Of course, there are some among the hundreds of old postcards that have been digitized. And we will soon be posting online movies made between 1949 and 1987, in black and white, color, sound or silent. Many of them were given to us by the Sillajlar association, which disappeared in the early 2000s. This is in addition to the background of 50 linear meters of documents already available on the construction sites, some of which were given to us in 2019. Shipbuilding Resource Center.

1. This album is MI M. by FiolI Josette Bertolucci (née Jaubert).

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *