The development of Amélie-les-Bains
The development of the city
In 1815, the municipality of Arles on Tech sold the Roman Thermal baths to M.Hermabessière father. This one will bring big improvements, he tried to preserve what stayed of the antiquity. His son, Dr Hermabessière, took the succession, was a mayor of Amélie in his turn, his son-in - law, Dr Forné, was also a mayor until February 14th, 1874, date in which he was replaced at the head of the municipality by Viaris de Lésigno's account named(appointed) a mayor by order of Home Secretary.
Dr Pujade, is a doctor leader(head) of the armies of First Empire, in his turn, bought grounds adjacent to the only source formerly known for Romain, made execute searches(excavations), discovered 14 sources independent from the primitive source and built a hydropathic establishment near Mondony in 1840. This doctor had understood all the interest and the curative value of our sources. He presented to the Academy of Science a report on his works.
The creation of the Thermal Hospital of the Armies
From 1835, the general of Castellane had appreciated the charm of our climate and the value of our sources. So, in realistic man, he had seen the interest to build in a site so privileged an establishment to look after the servicemen repatriated to Port-Vendres, during the conquest of our colonies. His first care was to give to Lloc dels Banys (" place of Baths ") the name of Queen Amélie, woman of Louis-Philippe, to facilitate he said the creation of the Military Hospital. During his numerous stays, he made build ways and walks in the mountain which surrounds the city (...)
The first stone was put on October 3rd, 1847 and it was for the inhabitants a festive day (...) The hospital was opened in 1855, that is penny Napoleon III. In 1860, it was declared permanent. The seasons were of two months, and the categories of sick were six times renewed a year.
Amélie's sulphurous waters were thus used for the water cure in three establishments distincts: a military hospital, a property of the state subjected to the direction of the doctors of the Army and two civil establishments under the supervision of a civil medical inspector.
Origin of Amélie les Bains's name
The site of thermal baths and neighborhood is known to the Latin period under the name of Arulae. The term indicate very exactly small altars raised certainly to the neighborhood of sources and thrown from the early Christian time(period) (IVth century). The site will always guard the name of Arulae (Arles). Later, after the Norman invasions, from the end of the IXth century, when the abbey saint-Marie will be reconstructed on the current site a few kilometers away from there, the name will follow. This municipality, because of thermal baths, will not be known any more while under the name Els Banys (Baths).
Els Banys became Amélie-les-Bains on April 7th, 1840. This is the way, all at once of a sudden, at the request of Marshal de Castellane, municipality of the Pyrénées-Orientales.