Museum of Franco-American cooperation, château of Blérancourt, Anne Morgan remembrance
The dressed stone chateau was built in the 17th century as a country house for the de Gesvres family.
During the French Revolution it was taken over by the state and the central part of the building was demolished. Ornamental elements and reusable building materials were auctioned off. All that remained were the great gate and two wings.
During the First World War these remaining buildings were heavily damaged. After the German retreat in 1917, Anne Morgan and Anne Murray Dike, two wealthy American ladies, made it the headquarters of C.A.R.D. (American Committee for Devastated Regions or Comité américain pour les régions dévastées). They began by erecting a wooden building to house an office and warehouse plus a dispensary, domestic science school and poultry yard. Their aim was not only to provide free food but to help the local population get back on its feet.
In 1918 the German offensive destroyed what was left of the building. Anne Morgan bought the ruins in 1919. On 30th July of the same year, Anne Morgan and Anne Murray Dike were made Officers of the Légion d'Honneur by General Pétain in the chateau. Rebuilding work began in 1924. In 1938 the south wing ,“pavillon des volontaires”, was rebuilt to house souvenirs of American volunteers in the Great War.
Today the remains of the Chateau de Blérancourt are home to the National Museum of Franco-American Cooperation, and its grounds have been transformed into the “Jardins du Nouveau Monde", or "New World Gardens".