Place:Neuchâtel, Switzerland


Alt namesCanton of Neuchâtel
Neuchâtelsource: Getty Vocabulary Program
Neuchâtelsource: Wikipedia
Neuchĉhatel cantonsource: Getty Vocabulary Program
Neuenburgsource: Cambridge World Gazetteer (1990) p 445
Coordinates47.0°N 6.917°E
Located inSwitzerland     (1815 - )
source: Getty Thesaurus of Geographic Names
source: Family History Library Catalog

the text in this section is copied from an article in Wikipedia

The Republic and Canton of Neuchâtel is a French-speaking canton in western Switzerland. In 2007, its population was 169,782, of whom 39,654 (or 23.4%) were foreigners. The capital is Neuchâtel.


the text in this section is copied from an article in Wikipedia
Rulers of Neuchâtel 1034–1848
Name Reign
Ulrich I de Fenis1034–1070
Mangold I1070–1097
Mangold II ?–1144
Rudolph I?–1148
Ulrich II 1148–1191
Rudolph II 1191-1196
Berthold I1196–1259
Ulrich III1191-1225
Berthold I1159–1263
Rudolph III 1259-1263
Ulrich IV 1263-?
Henri  ?-1283
Amadeus 1283–1288
Rudolph IV 1288–1343
Louis I 1343–1373
Elisabeth 1373–1395
Conrad IV of Freiburg1395–1424
Jean de Fribourg1424–1458
Rudolph IV of Hachberg-Sausenberg1458–1487
Philip of Hachberg1487–1503
Johanna of Hachberg 1504–1512
Swiss Confederacy 1512–1529
Johanna of Hachberg 1529–1543
François d'Orléans-Longueville 1543–1548
Léonor d'Orléans-Longueville 1548–1573
Henri I 1573–1595
Henri II 1595–1663
Jean Louis Charles 1663–1694
Marie de Nemours 1694–1707
Frederick William I of Prussia 1708–1740
Frederick II 1740–1786
Frederick William II 1786–1797
Frederick William III 1797–1806
Louis Alexandre Berthier 1806–1814
Frederick William III 1815–1840
Frederick William IV 1840–1848/57
Republic of Neuchâtel 12 September 1848

The only part of present-day Switzerland to enter the Confederation as a principality (in 1814), Neuchâtel has a unique history. Its first recorded ruler, Rudolph III of Burgundy, mentioned Neuchâtel in his will in 1032. The dynasty of Ulrich count of Fenis (Hasenburg) took over the town and its territories in 1034. The dynasty prospered and, by 1373, all the lands now part of the canton belonged to the count. In 1405, the cities of Bern and Neuchâtel entered a union. The lands of Neuchâtel had passed to the Zähringen lords of Freiburg in the late 14th century as inheritance from the childless Elisabeth, Countess of Neuchâtel, to her nephews, and then in 1458 to margraves of Sausenburg who belonged to the House of Baden.

Their heiress, Johanna of Hachberg-Sausenberg (Jehanne de Hochberg), and her husband, Louis I d'Orléans, duc de Longueville, inherited it in 1504, after which the French house of Orléans-Longueville (Valois-Dunois). Neuchâtel's Swiss allies then occupied it from 1512 to 1529 before returning it to its widowed countess.

The French preacher Guillaume Farel brought the teachings of the Protestant Reformation to the area in 1530. Therefore, when the house of Orléans-Longueville became extinct with Marie d'Orléans-Longueville's death in 1707, Neuchâtel was Protestant, and looked to avoid passing to a Catholic ruler. The rightful heiress in primogeniture from Jeanne de Rothelin was Paule de Gondi, Duchess of Retz, who was Catholic. The people of Neuchâtel chose Princess Marie's successor from among fifteen claimants. They wanted their new prince first and foremost to be a Protestant, and also to be strong enough to protect their territory but based far enough away to leave them to their own devices. King Louis XIV of France actively promoted the many French pretenders to the title, but the Neuchâtelois people in the final decision in 1708 passed them over in favour of the Protestant King Frederick I of Prussia, who claimed his entitlement in a rather complicated fashion through the House of Orange and Nassau, who were not even descended from Jeanne de Rothelin.

Frederick I and his successors ruled the Principality of Neuchâtel in personal union with Prussia from 1708 until 1806 and again from 1814 until 1857. Napoleon Bonaparte deposed King Frederick William III of Prussia as prince of Neuchâtel and appointed instead his chief of staff Louis Alexandre Berthier. Starting in 1807, the principality provided Napoleon's Grande Armée with a battalion of rangers. The rangers were nicknamed Canaris (i.e. canaries) because of their yellow uniforms.

After the Liberation Wars the principality was restored to Frederick William III in 1814. The Conseil d'État (state council, i.e. government of Neuchâtel) addressed him in May 1814 requesting the permission to establish a special battalion, a Bataillon de Chasseurs, for the service of his majesty.[1] Frederick William III then established by his "most-supreme cabinet order" (Allerhöchste Cabinets-Ordre, A.C.O.), issued in Paris on 19 May 1814, the Bataillon des Tirailleurs de la Garde following the same principles as with the Neuchâtel battalion within the Grande Armée.[1] The Conseil d'Etat of Neuchâtel had the right of nomination for the battalion's officers. The commander was the battalion's only officer chosen by the monarch.

A year later he agreed to allow the principality to join the Swiss Confederation, then not yet an integrated federation, but a confederacy, as a full member. Thus Neuchâtel became the first and only monarchy to join the otherwise entirely republican Swiss cantons. This situation changed in 1848 when a peaceful revolution took place and established a republic, in the same year that the modern Swiss Confederation was transformed into a federation. King Frederick William IV of Prussia did not cede immediately, and several attempts at counter-revolution took place, culminating in the Neuchâtel Crisis of 1856–57. In 1857, Frederick William finally renounced the monarchy's claim on the area.

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