Alsace-Lorraine under German Rule

By Charles Downer Hazen | Go to book overview

CHAPTER II
ALSACE-LORRAINE BEFORE THE TREATY OF FRANKFORT

WHAT was this country, now transferred as a war prize, in its essential character, in its fundamental nature? Was it German or was it French? The question has received two answers. The Germans have asserted that it was German, the French that it was French. The opinion of those most intimately concerned, the people of Alsace and Lorraine themselves, was just as explicit as either of these. They asserted, as we have seen, that they were French and wished to remain French, and that the document that pretended to transfer them was from the start and would forever remain null and void.

What light did history throw upon this problem, if it was a problem? It is impossible within the confines of this volume to recount with any fulness the crowded annals of this people. The story does not easily lend itself to compression, it is so long, so varied, and so involved. Nevertheless, out of its bewildering intricacies, a few features in the slow

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