Essaouira Mogador is a town at the Atlantic coast of Morocco

En langue française


The French

In 1626 the French Cardinal Richelieu sent his envoyé Chevalier Isaac de Rasilly (1587 - 1635) to occupy the Island of Mogador. But he found the island not defendable and not suitable for a base for further Atlantic expeditions.

Bombardement Essaoira 1844

Following Morocco's alliance with Algeria's Abd-El-Kader against France, Essaouira was bombarded and briefly
occupied by the French Navy under the Prince de Joinville on August 16, 1844.

Hommage du  Syndicat d´initiative:The French Consulate

In Rue Laalouj (Medina - Kasbah) there is
the building of the ancient French Consulat.

Charles de Foucauld (1858-1916)
undertook a risky exploration of Morocco (1883 -1884) as an adolecent searching for God. As a priest he returned to Morocco in 1901 and stayed in Sahara, first in Beni Abbès and later at Tamanrasset among the Tuaregs of the Hoggar. He had a great respect for the culture of Morocco and faith of muslims.

Charles de Foucauld




Buildning the French protectorate

Administrative buildings
from the French protectotrate
30 Mar 1912 - 2 Mar 1956

The French presence during the protectorate is important . French is the first foreign language and is widely spoken in the Moroccan administration and the schools.

French soldier with  moroccan woman



Petit pains au chocolat

The French culture is immanent in all aeras
but certainly the most appreciated is
the French pastry and the "Petit pains au chocolat"

Today you find the best
Petit Pains au chocolat
in Azlef (Patisserie Patachou)


Read also about the tragic death of Lieutenant Aviator Cazes, a pioneer French pilot, who died when he crashed on the rocks on the shore of Mogador in 1913. Here


The attack of Mogador by the French fleet in August 1844, Serkis Diranian.

The attack of Mogador by the French fleet in August 1844, Serkis Diranian.
Serkis Diranian (1854-1918) was an Armenian orientalist painter.
Originally from the Ottoman Empire, he was established for many years in Paris.

Bombardement de Mogador

Bombardemnet Mogador 1844

The bombing of Mogador was a naval attack launched between 15 and 16 August 1844 by the Kingdom of France against the Moroccan city of Mogador (present-day Essaouira), as part of the Franco-Moroccan war between the two countries following the the support of Sultan Moulay Abderrahmane to Emir Abdelkader.
After first exchanges of artillery fire against the fortifications of the city that turn to the advantage of the French, the French expeditionary force lands on the islet of Mogador and seizes after a fierce Moroccan resistance. The French then seize the port without encountering resistance, while in the meantime, Masmouda tribes in the region took the opportunity to attack the city and loot.

The French fleet commanded by Francois d'Orleans, prince of Joinville, son of King Louis-Philippe, successfully bombed MOGADOR allowing the capture of the city and its port.

Histoire de Mogador (Essaouira) Bombardement de Mogador 15 août 1844 – 17 août 1844
Texte de : Abdelkader Mana Voix off : Yoan Afriat

Empire francais par Kiwi

Auguste Beaumier (1823 -1876)

Auguste Beaumier

He is the son of a sea captain from Marseille. After learning Arabic, he became an interpreter in Mogador, Tangier, Tunis and Rabat (1847) then was appointed consul in Mogador in 1865 and officiated there until his death 1876.
Exploring the regions subject to the authority of the sultan, he visited on horseback the Atlantic coast from Tetouan to Mogador and, in 1868, with his wife, Jeanne Pingot, traveled from Mogador to Marrakech with return via Safi. He then draws up reports, itineraries and maps of his travels which he sends to the Geographical Society. See his map of the marche of cholera in 1868
In addition, we owe him numerous translations of Arabic historical and literary works. He was instrumental in spreading the French language and culture in Mogador. Through his action and his many approaches, he contributed decisively to the establishment in Mogador of the school of the Alliance Israélite Universelle (A.I.U.) of Paris despite the opposition of the Jewish oligarchy which had remained very Anglophile. Later, the school of the A.I.U. would take the name of “Ecole Auguste Beaumier”, out of recognition and in homage to this defender, before the hour, of the Francophonie.



The French General Lyautey leaves Mogador 1913

The French General Lyautey leaves Mogador 1913

Maréchal Lyauthey ordered 1912 to build the clocktower (Magana) in the new Kasbah.

Sidi Lyautey

Sidi Lyautey - an icon

. Resident-General Lyautey a fervent proponent of indirect colonisation especially in Berber speaking areas, has kept that role and even enhanced it by given an important role to local notabilities such as T'hami El Glaoui, to act as a relay between the population and the French authorities to govern the country.The Makhzen is a very ancient notion in Morocco, it roughly coincides with the notion of the ancien feudalist state predating The French protectorate.

External links (en français)
Maroc : Sidi Lyautey, un siècle après

Maréchal Juin Resident General in Morocco (1947 - 1951) visited Mogador the 4th of May 1951
and inaugurated the biggest hotel in the town: Hotel des Iles.

13 Mar 1919 - 18 Feb 1956 Civil Ensign

Lyautey Map of Morocco

French Military governor    
4 Aug 1907 - 28 Apr 1912 Louis Hubert Lyautey (b. 1854 - d. 1934)
French Residents-general    
28 Apr 1912 - 25 Aug 1925 Louis Hubert Lyautey (s.a.)  
12 Dec 1916 - 7 Apr 1917 Henri Gouraud
(acting for Lyautey)
(b. 1879 - d. 1949)

4 Oct 1925 - 1 Jan 1929

Théodore Steeg
(b. 1868 - d. 1950)
2 Jan 1929 - 14 Sep 1933 Lucien Saint (b. 1867 - d. 1938)
14 Sep 1933 - 22 Mar 1936 Auguste Henri Ponsot (b. 1877 - d. 1963)
22 Mar 1936 - 16 Sep 1936 Marcel Peyrouton (b. 1887 - d. 1983)

16 Sep 1936 - 21 Jun 1943
Hippolyte Noguès (b. 1876 - d. 1971)
21 Jun 1943 - 4 Mar 1946 Gabriel Puaux (b. 1883 - d. 1970)
4 Mar 1946 - 14 May 1947 Eirik Labonne
(b. 1888 - d. 1971)

14 May 1947 - 28 Aug 1951

Alphonse Pierre Juin

(b. 1888 - d. 1967)
28 Aug 1951 - 20 May 1954 Augustin Léon Guillaume
(b. 1895 - d. 1983)
20 May 1954 - 20 Jun 1955 Francis Lacoste
(b. 1905 - d. 1993)
20 Jun 1955 - 31 Aug 1955 Gilbert Yves Édmond Grandval (b. 1904 - d. 1981)

31 Aug 1955 - 11 Nov 1955

Pierre Boyer de Latour

(b. 1896 - d. 1976)

11 Nov 1955 - 2 Mar 1956

André Louis Dubois

(b. 1903 - d. 1998)


The French flag in the port

The French flag at the marine door

From 1912 to 1956, Essaouira was part of the French protectorate of Morocco. Mogador was used as a base for a military expedition against Dar Anflous, when 8,000 French troops were located outside of the city under the orders of Generals Franchet d'Esperey and Brulard.
The Kasbah of Dar Anflous was taken on 25 January 1913.
France had an important administrative, military and economic presence. Essaouira had a Franco-Moroccan school, still visible in Derb Dharb street. Linguistically, many Moroccans of Essaouira speak French fluently today.

Operations from December 1912 to February 1913 in the Haha-Chiadma circle
- return from Dar-el-Kadi of the Brulard and Massoutier column.
From left to right: the air force of Morocco renders the honours-General Brulard-General Franchet.
The landing companies of the cruisers Du Chayla and Friant. Photo: Georges Guerard (Site:

General Franchet d'Esperey and the lieutenant Dohu at the gate of Mogador

General Franchet d'Esperey was appointed Major General in 1912, and General Lyautey entrusted him with the command of the troops in Morocco. During the difficult period of the beginnings of the Protectorate, he took an important part in the pacification and organization of the country.

The caserns of the Zouaves RegimentThe barracks of of the Zouaves Regiment

Moroccan soldiers fight for France
(Les anciens combattants)

More than 100,000 African soldiers died in battlefield or by disease (36,000 North Africans and 30,000 black Africans). In July 1916, the terrible "Battle of the Somme," the summer of 1918 at Chateau-Thierry, in the woods Courtons (10th Colonial DI), on the Montagne de Reims (1st Colonial Corps ) and during the offensive Mangin (RICM)

Under the protectorate, French civil servants allied themselves with the French settlers (colons) and with their supporters in France to prevent any moves in the direction of Moroccan autonomy. As pacification proceeded, the French government promoted economic development, particularly the exploitation of Morocco's mineral wealth, the creation of a modern transportation system, and the development of a modern agriculture sector geared to the French market. Tens of thousands of colons entered Morocco and bought up large amounts of the rich agricultural land. Interest groups that formed among these elements continually pressured France to increase its control over Morocco.


Avenue Franchet d´Esperey

Avenue du Maréchal Franchet d´Espérey got a new name after the protectorate
which was Avenue de L´Istiqlal but the local name is Haddada.
Read more about names of streets



Sandillon Mill

In 1896, Ferdinand SANDILLON built the first mill in Essaouira.

Remparts Bab al Bahr

The mill is now replaced by a riad in Street Oujda
just on the medina walls by the Bab al Bahr facing the sea.
Low tide in picture above

The Sandillon flourmill

Jean Carel

Carel tannery

Notice from 1931

Notice in L ánnuaire Marocain Professions de Mogador 1931

Carel Tannery

The famous tannery Jean Carel, today abandoned was the first unit created in 1929 in the industrial area (quartier industriel) of Essaouira. Mogador-Essaouira was one of the leading suppliers in the kingdom of skins in the mid-twentieth century. The tannery Carel was the largest in Africa. It was sold by the family Carel in the early 80 to Moulay Massaoud, associated with Moulay Abdallah, the brother of King Hassan II. The tannery survived until 1992, when it closed its doors after a the workers' struggle and unsuccesful strike.

The Bouveret  clinic
Bouveret clinic

Dr Charles Louis Gustave Bouveret - who lived and worked as doctor in Mogador from 1913 until his death 1948.

L'histoire du protectorat français au Maroc

Mars 1912 : le Maroc devient protectorat français

Bombardment of Mogador (Wikiwand)



The French

External Links

Prince de Joinville

Charles de Foucauld

Alliance Franco_marocaine d´Essaouira

World Stateman

Ben Cahoon

Les Francs-Maçons au Maroc
sous la IIIe République
1867 - 1940

General Franchet d´Esperey



L'exposition Coloniale

Maghreb Colonial