It is situated twenty-eight miles (45 km) east of Metz, France and seventeen miles (27 km) southwest of Saarbrücken, Germany. This area has frequently suffered invasions and since the nineteenth century has been controlled alternately by German and French authorities.
The original Abbey of Saint Nabor began as an oratory for a sixth-century monastery. Gradually a complex developed after it received the relics of Saint Nabor, and the church was rebuilt in the eighteenth century, in part following baroque style. It was designated as a basilica.
During the French Revolution, the monastery and church suffered extensive damage; the cloisters were destroyed. The ancient parish church was sacrificed in exchange for keeping Saint Nabor. The abbey also suffered bombing damage during World War II, but much of the church has been restored.
Just north of the town is the site of Europe's largest United States' World War II military cemetery, the Lorraine American Cemetery and Memorial, with the graves of 10,489 American soldiers who died during World War II. Most of the men were killed during the United States' drive to expel German forces from the fortress city of Metz toward the Siegfried Line and the Rhine River. The soldiers were mostly from the U.S. Seventh Army's Infantry and Armored divisions and its cavalry groups.