Ouvrage du Michelsberg


Useful Information

Location: Rte de Dalstein, 57320 Ébersviller.
(49.2997614, 6.4126727)
Open: APR to mid-JUN Sat, Sun 14:30.
Mid-AUG to SEP Fri 14, Sat, Sun 14:30.
SEP Sat, Sun 14:30.
OCT to MAR every second Sun 14:30.
Online booking required. [2023]
Fee: Adults EUR 7, Children (8-14) EUR 3.50, Children (0-7) free.
Groups (10+): Adults EUR 5, School Pupils EUR 3.
[2023]
Classification: SubterraneaCasemate SubterraneaWorld War II Bunker TopicLigne Maginot TopicRoute des Fortifications Européenes
Light: LightIncandescent Electric Light System
Dimension:  
Guided tours: D=90 min.
Photography: allowed
Accessibility: no
Bibliography:  
Address: Association Ouvrage du Michelsberg, Allée du Commandant Pelletier, 57320 Ébersviller, Tel: +33-750-66-39-19. E-mail:
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.

History

APR-1930 begin of construction.
1935 completed.
1937 handed over to the army.
1956 designated part of the Mòle de Boulay, a strongpoint in the northeastern defenses against Soviet attack.
1971 end of maintainance.
1978-1988 used for the cultivation of mushrooms.
1993 Association Ouvrage du Michelsberg founded, begin of restauration.
1996 opened to the public.

Description

The Ouvrage du Michelsberg was a part of the Maginot Line, Fortified Sector of Boulay (SF), which was integrated into the Fortified Region of Metz. The Michelsberg accommodated men, ammunition and equipment. In front there are five combat blocks equipped with six cannons, two mortars, several dozen rifles and machine guns. Its firing power was one ton of shells per minute within a radius of more than 12 km. The 75 turret is the largest turret model in the Maginot line, with a weight of 265 t. All those structures are connected by more than a kilometer of galleries at a depth of 30 m.

The site is maintaine by the non-profit association Association Ouvrage du Michelsberg, which was founded in 1993. They also had the idea to create the European Fortification Forum, events were such groups from all over Euorope met once a year. One of the biggest in 1995 had more than 2000 visitors. They opened the site with regular open hours in 1996, although visits on reservation were actually possible since 1993. The association also started the renovation of the Abri d'intervalle de Bilmette, a different kind of shelter located 300 m from the entrance. The renovation is still ongoing. Since 2016, the association is partner in the European Fortifications Route (RFE) which promotes modern military fortifications in the Grand Est.

Michelsberg did not see significant action in the Battle of France. In June 1940, it was attacked from the rear by German forces that had bypassed the Maginot Line. It successfully resisted these attacks, but surrendered in accordance with the 25-JUN-1940 armistice. Unlike most other fortifications of the Maginot Line it was renovated as a Cold War fortification against a potential Soviet invasion. But the work was limited to restoration of systems and improvements to existing armament. Those forts were actually neither secret nor equipped for nuclear war, they were intended for conventional war. In the late 1950s the money needed to maintain and upgrade the fortifications was diverted for the nuclear programs.