HistoryThe formation of the department of Lot-et-Garonne brings interesting lightings on the way in which the political officials of the time conceived the divisions of influence between rival cities while considering their bonds with the campaigns. Because, from a geographical point of view, the Lot-et-Garonne consists of extremely different areas: “north could just as easily be attached to the the Dordogne, the south is hardly distinguished from the slopes gersois, as for south-west it is only one additional Landes” (Luxembourg Mr.).
Until the Revolution, the Agenais passes more for one “country” than a quite precise province. Located at the hinge between the Guyenne and the Languedoc, between the influence of Bordeaux and Toulouse, the Resident of Agen would have being completely absorptive by one or the other. Agen belonged, at the first centuries of the Christian era to the Aquitaine, which definitively fixed the Diocèse of Agen in the mobility of Bordeaux. The collapse of the Roman Empire had consequences much more serious on the political plan. The Resident of Agen then was subjected to the most various influences. “Walk” for the King de France vis-a-vis the power of the Gascon during all the Early middle ages, it was to be the victim of the wars between this sovereign and that of England, the political or military border passing, sometimes upstream, sometimes downstream from Agen. Between 1196, date on which Richard Lion-hearted gives the Resident of Agen in dowry to his/her sister, who marries the Count de Toulouse, and 1271, where Philippe Bold the returns this territory to king d' Angleterre, the Resident of Agen rather belonged to the States Toulousains. It enters then during its English time, intersected with some short time of French domination. It is with Louis XI that the Resident of Agen was definitively to break any bond with Languedoc and Toulouse, depend until the end on the Ancien Mode, of the Parlement of Bordeaux and of the Gouvernement of Guyenne.
During this very animated period, the Resident of Agen seemed a quite dubious entity. Thus, the Diocèse of Agen was divided into two during the creation of that of Condom in 1317. The administrative or legal jurisdictions were superimposed or overlapped, maintaining a certain confusion. Moreover, certain territories continued to look towards Toulouse, like the Viscount of Brulhois, whose capital was Laplume, whereas the others depended on the Généralité of Bordeaux. If, from the administrative point of view, the Sénéchaussée of Agen were very vast, covering the northern half of Lot-et-Garonne current, it was stripped, in the south, of this authority, because Condom, Nérac (because of the powerful family of Albret) and Bazas, were also the seat of a seneschalsy. This cut was facilitated by the Garonne. The use of this river like dividing line, on several occasions during the history, testifies that the Garonne was an obstacle with circulation in the North-South direction and a well marked natural limit mainly administrative point of view.
Pursuant to the directives formulated by the constituent Assembly, the Agen-native deputies imagined a corrosive department on the Quercy and the Gascogne, while supporting the creation of an intermediate department between Bordeaux and Agen in order to prevent that the future departmental chief town is rejected with the periphery of an administrative unit too much vast. The others limiting lent less to discussion because of the agreements occurred between the deputies. Thus in north it was very quickly acquired that the Dropt would form separation with the future department of the the Dordogne. Towards Gascogne, it seemed normal that Condom is dependant on Agen and it was, in any event, necessary that the future department settles on both sides of the Garonne, to make it possible Agen to fully exert its radiation but Condom itself required to be turned towards Auch and to take the head of a district. Finally towards the east the residents of Agen required the fastening of the cantons of Auvillar, Valence of Agen, Borough-of-Visa and Montaigu-with-Quercy.
Thus constituted, the Lot-et-Garonne was to choose a chief town and if Agen were likely all to carry it, competition was however rough between the cities placed better in central position. The first meeting of the departmental Parliament took place with Agen as agreed, but the other cities claimed the respect of the rotation. The suppression of this last by the Parliament supported Agen, in spite of a last attempt on behalf of Aiguillon which required to become, because of its situation in the middle of Lot-et-Garonne, the final chief town. It was however Agen, in spite of its offset position, which carried it taking into account its role in the past.
In 1808, the creation of the Département of Tarn-et-Garonne modified the Eastern limits. During the development of the chart of the departments, the deputy of Montauban had not been able to obtain that this city is with the head of one of new administrative divisions, Cahors overriding his rival Tarn-and-garonnaise. The inhabitants then multiplied the interventions to show that it was abnormal that Montauban sits of Evêché, a Seneschalsy, of a General information, is thus lowered to the row of district. By a decision of 1808, Napoleon 1st reached their desire by creating the Tarn-et-Garonne, whose Montauban became the Chef-lieu. For that one cut down the Lot-et-Garonne by the cantons by Montaigu-of-Quercy, of Borough-of-Visa, Valence-in Agen and Auvillar, which had however always belonged to the historical Resident of Agen and the Guyenne.
GeographyThe department of Lot-et-Garonne belongs to the area Aquitaine. It is bordering on the departments Lot, of Tarn-et-Garonne, Gers, Landes, the Gironde and the Dordogne.
Great natural fields and landscapes
As a whole natural environment batch-and-garonnais present of modelled rather soft because of the nature of the geological grounds which constitute it. The vast zone of plates which covers less than 400.000 ha is made up of grounds of marly or mollassic origin and slopes limestones or argilo-limestones.
The septentrional part of Lot-et-Garonne, between the Garonne, Batch and Dropt, rather makes up of hills limestones to the undulating forms. On the hillocks are placed some large boroughs like those of Monflanquin, Monclar, Cancon or Castillonnès. The landscape is open with large cereal fields and meadows. The areas close to the Eastern northern edge present more contrasted forms, because of the existence of Jurassic Calcaires in the Quercy and cretaceous in Périgord. It is about the “country to the wood” thus named because of the maintenance of an important forest cover. This area also provided iron ore which made it possible to fix the metallurgical activity along the rivers and on the Batch.
Between the Garonne and Lot the “country of the greenhouses is placed”, plate which dominates in a marked way (sometimes of more than 100 m) the two river valleys. Flatness is not absolute because of the notch of the rivers which go down quickly towards the two large valleys and from the existence of hillocks, the “pechs”, at the top of which large villages like Tournon-with Agenais or Puymirol are sometimes placed.
In the south of Agen, the hills of Néracais develop on the molasse and announce the landscapes gersois. Very undulating landscapes carry a cereal and wine agriculture.
Sands of the solid mass landais recover the south-western quarter on approximately 80.000 ha. The Landes of the Lot-et-Garonne are integral part of the Landes of Gascogne: moutonnées forms, maritime pines, rectilinear roads, traditions and populations (Gascon of the moor).
Between Casteljaloux and the Marmandais opens a space of transition marked more and more by an intensive agriculture while approaching the Vallée of the Garonne.
The plains hold a great place (more than 100.000 ha), mainly those of the the Garonne and Lot, which widen in certain places on several kilometers. The divagations of the Garonne in its valley obliged the cities to be fixed on its Right Bank: Agen, Pivot, Tonneins, Marmande. The modern transportation routes, except the highway, made in the same way. The floodplains or wet are often occupied fields of Maïs and Peupleraies whose production is used in the industry of wood for the manufacture of small cages. Over these rich person grounds dominate a fruit-bearing and vegetable agriculture however.
Rivers and the threat of water
Two reasons explain mainly the frequency and the gravity of believed in Lot-et-Garonne. This phenomenon is due initially to the exceptional concentration of the rivers in this area. In addition to the large emissary which are the Tarn, upstream of Agen and the Lot in its central part, both bringing the water fallen into the south from the Massif Central, a multitude of more or less long rivers, join the the Garonne on left bank: the Gers, the Fall for most important. This gathering, combined with the narrowness of the bed of the Garonne, which even in period of overflow is encumbered many obstacles, make catastrophic the risings caused, according to the case, by precipitations and the snow melt. Moreover, the majority of the rivers have a low hydraulicity because of their modest slope; this one is lower than 0,5 per thousand upstream on the Garonne starting from Malause of Agen.
The climatic data also play a determining role in the rise of water. The Garonne average is sensitive to all kinds of influences: rains of Mediterranean origin, known as still Cevennes affecting mainly the upstream reservoir of the Tarn; those, oceanic, striking the the Pyrenees and Lannemezan associated with the snow melt; those, finally, related to the disturbances concerning the Western part of the basin. The great rising of March 1930 is of the first type, while one of most recent, that of December 1981, concerns the last influence rather. Lastly, one should not neglect to them violent stormy heavy showers, which in the best of the cases touch only one small area, but can also reach an exceptional width. For a medium flow of 650 m ³ /s with the Farmhouse-with Agenais (1800 m ³ /s with high waters and 120 m ³ /s with the low water level during the summer months), one reaches exceptional values at the time of great the hundred last years risings: 8500 m ³ /s in May 1875, 7500 m ³ /s in February 1952 and in December 1981. These paroxysms are accompanied by maximum dimensions regularly exceeding of 10 m the normal level with Tonneins, Marmande and Réole. The record is of 10,70 m with Tonneins in 1930 (10 m in 1981), of 11,40 m with Marmande in 1875, (10,56 in 1981). Agen making exception, the damage affects the campaigns more the cities. At the time of the most recent catastrophe, that of December 1981, no loss in human life was deplored, which had not been the case in 1875 where one counted 500 dead and in 1930 (200 died for all the basin). In 1981, the property damages were estimated at nearly 25 million euros for the whole of the basin. About half represents the losses caused by the immersion of more than 80.000 ha in the plain of the Garonne, value definitely higher when the rise of water with place with the Printemps, at the moment when the fields are sown. It is conceived, under these conditions, that the political officials and economic are interested by the application of a certain number of measurements aiming at eliminating the risks from risings. The solutions are known since strong a long time: to build large tanks on the Garonne and its principal affluents, to reinforce the dammings up and to rationalize their establishments, to release the minor bed of all the obstacles which block the fast circulation of water at the time of their rise. Some of these proposals are however inapplicable and the cost of these operations prohibitory. Important work was undertaken to protect the Agen-native agglomeration. It is true also that in relation to the probable climate change, the interest for these great projects is slackened because there no were important risings during these last years.
ClimateThe Lot-et-Garonne is located in the oceanic climatic zone. But, it is about a oceanic Climat degraded with a thermal Amplitude annual more marked and precipitations less abundant than on the Aquitanian littoral. Moreover, unlike the littoral more, spring (especially at its end) there is sprinkled than the winter. The dominant winds are of west without being exclusive.
Population of Lot-et-GaronneIf the Lot-et-Garonne counts nearly 318.000 inhabitants in 2005 according to an estimate of INSEE, it remains less populated than in the middle of the 19th century because it knew a demographic decline pronounced on nearly one century. After having recorded a clear demographic recovery after the second world war, its population does not progress any more in a regular way during the 25 last years.
The depopulation of Lot-et-Garonne between 1841 and 1921Depopulation is the striking fact of the demographic history of the department during a hundred years. It is possible to distinguish three great phases. Initially a period of growth continuous, since the end of the 18th century until worms 1836 - 1841, followed by a fall of the population, revealed by the census of 1846. From now on the Lot-et-Garonne, just like the close departments, loses inhabitants and this movement continues until the Entre-deux-guerres.
The Lot-et-Garonne gained 22.450 people in forty years, that is to say on average 2.800 every five years; the progression was strongest between 1821 and 1836 with a profit higher than 16.000 over fifteen years. If the maximum were actually reached in 1841 with a little more than 347.000 inhabitants, it should be considered that the period of growth was stopped as of 1831. During 80 years, from one census to another, the Lot-et-Garonne lost inhabitants. The shortly after the First World War, the Lot-et-Garonne did not count any more that 240.000 inhabitants against 347.000 in 1841, is a loss of 107.000 individuals. Concern related to this situation is perceptible through the bitter reflection of the departmental archivist, commenting on the results of 1911: “the Agen-native race, however so gracious and if alarm, tends more and more to be eliminated from the French soil. The every day it melts under our eyes”. Between 1841 and 1921, only twelve communes including three chief towns of district: Agen, seat of prefecture, Marmande, and Villeneuve-sur-Lot like some industrial cities (Casteljaloux, Miramont-with-Guyenne, Lavardac, Fumel) does not lose inhabitants. On the other hand, nearly 30% of the communes lost more half of their population. All the other communes record strong rate of retreat of their population, half of them losing nearly 50% their inhabitants. Only the rural communes close to the valleys know less strong reductions.
The reduction of the number of the Naissance S is the leading cause of the Dépopulation of Lot-et-Garonne. In one century, of 1846 with 1946, it lost more than 130.000 people because of too many deaths compared to the births, partly made up deficit, only, by a migratory contribution of more than 50.000 individuals, mainly between the two wars and during the second world war because of the reception of refugees. It is between 1901 and 1921 that the retreat of the population is pronounced the most because of a natural deficit which passes very close to 40.000 individuals (deficit of the births and human losses during the first world war) whereas the migratory contributions are negligible.
It is difficult to determine the causes of the Dénatalité. Two things at least are acquired: the fall of the fruitfulness, which one can measure starting from the Années 1850, and the ageing of the population which prohibits then very begun again. Low fruitfulness testified to a voluntary limitation of the births on behalf of the inhabitants. There no were precise studies on the means used to arrive to this result. A doctor, good expert of the campaigns, wrote that the severe repression of the Avortement S, would raise the Natalité of a quarter. The fall of fruitfulness would have begun very early within the middle-class, then would have gained the rural owners living of the Polyculture. The relative richness of the plain of the the Garonne made it possible to largely live or to even grow rich, on the condition of restricting dimensions of the household.
Because of its positive Migratory balance, the Lot-et-Garonne gained some 15.000 people between 1821 and 1901, which is little, if one thinks that represented a little less than 200 individuals per annum. Between 1821 and 1851, the absence of great upheavals explains the importance of the surpluses for this period, those being besides higher lasting the first two decades than during the last. Of 1851 with 1861, on the contrary, the departures overrode the arrivals, because of the disordered states appeared in several spheres of activities: crisis of the old agricultural system of production, fold of certain industrial activities, decline of the Shipping, on the Tributary Garonne and its , consecutive with the competition of novel modes of transport.
The Lot-et-Garonne however offered the originality to be one of the rare French rural departments, having known a surplus of the arrivals on the departures over the period which runs until the second world war. Périgourdins, Caussenards, Limousins, Pyrenean or Aveyronnais, moved towards this area; many toponyms in Marmandais evoke indeed today Auvergne, Auvergnats, Aurillac, Rouergats, Landais of the coast (Marensin) come for the Gemmage from the maritime pines in the Moors of the Lot-et-Garonne. Very other was the arrival of the peasants of the West, which began only at the end of the 19th century; most important, the migration of Vendean, began towards 1890, culminating at the beginning of the 20th century and died out a little before the First World War.
Although modest, the contribution from abroad cannot be neglected. Before 1850 one counted some less than 2.000 in Lot-et-Garonne. This number strongly increases after 1860, the maximum being reached in 1881 with 7.000. More than 90% from these abroad were Spanish. A small minority of them came as agricultural seasonal workers; some were fixed gradually while taking in lease smallholding S. the majority settled in the main cities of the Resident of Agen, occupying as a majority of the industrial employment, as workmen and operations; they gathered in some districts, such with Agen that of the Porte of the Pine where they were more than 3.000 or in Néracais and Casteljaloux to meet the need for labor of industry and the construction of the railway lines. Between the two wars, the massive arrival of the Italy NS, originating for the majority in the area of Venice, was at the origin of the swelling of the foreign population in Lot-et-Garonne, so that in 1936 the Italians accounted for approximately 60% from abroad. No other attempt at settlement met as much success, the Poles being very few (less than 2.000) in spite of a regular progression their manpower, the very limited interest of Swiss and the proportion of Spaniards always rather stable. This foreign population was much younger than the autochtones, half of the individuals having less than 30 years and 2,5% only more than 65 years (against 9% for the whole of Lot-et-Garonne). Arrived indeed a majority of young adults, for the majority with the head of an large family. Moreover, these Italians preserved a fruitfulness much stronger during a few years, which explained the proportion of the children of less than 15 years, about 30% compared with 23% in the countries garonnais. However these immigrants, more particularly the Italians, were integrated so perfectly in their new territory, which they very quickly adopted the local practices as regards Fécondité.
This migratory contribution between the two wars was thus an element rather favorable for the Lot-et-Garonne touched hard by the fall in the birth rate and the losses related to the combat of the war of 1914 - 1918. But, contrary to other areas which were used as discharge system with the migrations because they needed an industrial labor, they were in this case movements repopulation campaigns.
New forms of the demographic trends after 1945Inter-war period with the Years 1980, the Lot-et-Garonne gained more than 50.000 inhabitants. Compared to the previous period, it is about a fundamental change which is explained, mainly, by the place taken from now on by the cities in the general process of growth of the population of this area: the urban centres knew, since 1936, a supported progression, at the rate of 5 to 10% between each census, whereas the rural world recorded a continuous retreat. However, if the population increases it regularly is almost always at intervals slower than that of France and this growth is especially the fact of the most important cities. This growth rests more on the migratory contributions than on the regularly overdrawn natural balance since the middle of the years 1970. After the stagnation of the Years 1990, the population of Lot-et-Garonne increases again, in a clear way to reach nearly 318.000 inhabitants according to the estimates of 2005. This new growth is to be put in connection with the attractivity of the Aquitaine near the migrants come from the areas at the north of the the Loire. For as much, the Lot-et-Garonne attracts less than the littoral, it counts less inhabitants than at the beginning of the 19th century and remains the department less populated Aquitaine.
After more than one century of fall in the birth rate, the Resident of Agen entered a new demographic phase starting from the Second world war. The births more than the deaths allowed a regular growth of the population until the beginning of the Années 1970. Then, because of the departure of young people towards the regional Paris region and the two metropolises, Bordeaux and Toulouse, the natural balance is become again negative. The consequences of the ageing of the population are clearly felt at the end of the 20th century, with a deficit of more than 3.000 people in the last decade.
The ageing of the population (the Middle Age passed from 40 to 42 years between 1990 and 1999) does not forecast anything good, with regard to the demographic dynamism, for the years to come, the more so as the young adults continue to leave the department whereas this last attracts already married adults, with children. Thus, between 1990 and 1999, more than 40% of the newcomers have between 30 and 60 years and a third of them has more than 40 years. Fortunately, they have children, less than 14 years representing more than 20% of the new arrivals since 1990. These elements explain why the inactive ones gather 40% (children, wives…) of these recent migrants towards the Lot-et-Garonne and he would be necessary to add the 13% of pensioners to it. Employees and intermediate occupations, then the workmen, are most numerous among the credits.
During second half of the 20th century, the Lot-et-Garonne knew the most formidable rural migration of its history. The rural communes lost, on average, nearly 1% their inhabitants per annum between 1954 and 1962, but some definitely more: in 35 of them one records an annual loss higher than 3%. Their apparent dispersion on the whole of the department should not make illusion, it underlines on the contrary the spaces most struck by this phenomenon of desertion from the campaigns. It is thus in the Serres of the Residents of Agen, perfectly limited between the Lot and the the Garonne, where the only cases of growth are observed in the valleys around large cities. Even the boroughs, chief towns of cantons, like Montaigu-with-Quercy, Laroque-Timbaut or Prayssas were unable to be opposed to this exodus which was added to a long fall in the birth rate. The attraction of Agen and Villeneuve-sur-Lot is exerted here fully. The departures are quite as frequent in the Landes and their edge safe in some boroughs or cities, like in the hills of the Gers, so that all the southernmost fringe of the Resident of Agen was affected by this exodus. There some are ones of the least populated communes Lot-et-Garonne. Under a title shock, " S.O.S is it condemned to die? " , the mayor of this village summarized the recent evolution thus: “when I was child, there were 1200 inhabitants in the borough, maintaining 700. To each time I returned to the country, according to the chance of my professional displacements, I saw S.O.S declining? The merchants passed, let us maquignons them passed, and the fairs disappeared, whereas they attracted such an amount of world here. On five coffees, there remains about it only one; on three restaurants, it does not remain about it any more that only one, and still these three restaurants camouflaged us a long time reality, as they attracted world, we believed that the life was always there”. In the slopes north of the the Garonne, more particularly in contact with Périgord, the situation is not more enviable, and, of Duras to Villeréal, the losses are considerable, the departures putting in difficulty the rare trade or remaining services, which in their turn, at the time of their closing due to retirement, can cause a new wave of migrants.
Always present, in Lot-et-Garonne, the foreigners weigh however less heavy within the total population. From a little more than 33.000 with leaving the last war, their number passed to 17.500 worms 1975, figure still in reduction today since they are less than 15.000 in 1999. At the same time, their share is in retreat, falling from 12% of the total staff complement to less than 5% currently. If one is quite informed on their arrival, one on the other hand misses precise details on the departures and naturalization, which makes difficult any explanation of this evolution. A certain number of them regained their country, Italians, and especially Spaniards, who for a share, were refugees of the civil war of 1936. Some required to be naturalized because, being assimilated without difficulties, they preferred to make stock in Agenais. The Italians are replaced by people originating in the Iberian peninsula, especially of the Portuguese, whose manpower approaches 15% of the foreign population, and by Maghrebians, Marocains mainly. So some remain employees of agriculture, industry accommodated of it the greatest number, more particularly in the Fumélois.
At the time of the difficult period of the Decolonization, France had to accommodate several thousands of repatriates, all French of nationality, some belonging however to different cultures. The Lot-et-Garonne, of course, profited from this contribution. A camp had been built, on the territory of the commune of Sainte-Livrade-sur-Lot, to receive Vietnamese prisoners, of which the number reached 2.000 in 1946. Thereafter this camp was useful for other refugees of Indo-China, after the defeat of 1954; those formed a true community around a Buddhist Pagoda, with their own trade and activities, in margin of the borough. With little distance from there, with Bias, the doors of Villeneuve-sur-Lot, was created a reception center for the French Moslems of Algeria, expelled after the independence of this country. In provisional, but always functional structures in the years 1980, were lodged up to 3.000 Harkis starting from 1962. Contrary to the Indochineses who fixed themselves little in the Resident of Agen, Harkis essaimé in direction of the main cities.
Very other is the arrival of the repatriates of North Africa of European stock who arrived in mass, and were directed mainly worms of the farms which they bought. The first wave of 1954 with 1960 is made up fortunate people who take possession of the fields of vast dimensions in the valleys like in the slopes gersois. Their arrival made a strong impression on the local farmers, because of financial means of which they had and the commercial techniques or methods that they reflect in practice, marking of their print the local productions and leading some local peasants to imitate them. Although the number of these first " colons" that is to say vague, their manpower modest was compared with the massive arrival of the " rapatriés" following the Agreements of Evian, in 1962. In Lot-et-Garonne, it was deducted by it nearly 20.000, between 1962 and 1966, including 83% of European origin, the very great majority having given up the Algérie. All however did not acclimatize themselves in this area and only ten thousands remained. Their dispersion is rather strong in Lot-et-Garonne; four cantons, those of Lasted, Marmande, Monclar and Villeneuve-sur-Lot accommodated more than 50 families of " feet noirs" ; those preferred in the other cases, the valleys of the Garonne and the Batch, but forsook the Moors, the Greenhouses of the Resident of Agen and the north of the department. With time, a small number only (less than 2.000) continued to work the ground, not without success, in particular in the field of the production and marketing. But the large majority of the repatriates now have employment in the other branches of the economic activity, residing in the cities and the boroughs of the area. The increase in the population of Lot-et-Garonne does not benefit the unit from the communes from the department. The most favorable dynamics is observed around the three principal Agglomération S because of their capacity to create jobs and to fix the migrants who they come from the other communes of the department, the areas close or the remainder to France.
The recent evolution indicates however, that only the agglomeration of Agen remains gravitational. Its share in the total population increases unceasingly because of the stagnation of the population of Villeneuve-sur-Lot and Marmande. Within the limits of the urban Aire, i.e. of the zone within which at least 40% of the credits work in the agglomeration, Agen gathers 30% of the population of Lot-et-Garonne in 1999 against 27% in 1982. Moreover, its capacity required employment to the young couples makes it possible Agen to have an always positive natural balance whereas it is not any more the case of the department and the majority of the other cities. Thus, checks itself, in Lot-et-Garonne as in the remainder of France, polarization with the profit of a major pole concentrating the administrative duties between Bordeaux and Toulouse.
Agriculture plays a big role in Lot-et-Garonne
Agriculture occupies a dominant position in Lot-et-Garonne as well by the number of the credits as by the incomes drawn from this activity. That is due to undeniable climatic and pedological advantages, which make that the valley of the Garonne appears more specialized in the cultures of Fresh produce, that any other area of South-west, even if the Céréaliculture always occupies a great place there. That also results from the work of the men and the choices which they operated. This Spécialisation towards the market obliged the Lot-et-Garonne to live very early in open economy in order to be able to run out its productions towards the other French areas and with the international one.
Some studies stressed that the Pays of the Garonne belonged, at the 18th century, with the rich, associating agricultural productions and industrial areas. Even if other more recent research questioned this reality, it is probable that the valley of the Garonne actually knew a period very favorable to the 18th century. The 19th century was less favorable, which did not prevent agriculture from recording important changes because of disappearance of some productions or the development of news.
In 1806, 53% of the useful grounds were devoted to the Labors, 11% with the Vigne S and less than 6% with the Herbage S. For this same date: on 41,5 franc million, the vegetable Productions represented 37,5 million and the livestock productions four million francs only. With him only, the Blé added up 45% of these incomes, and, with the others Céréales, remained the most widespread culture in the countries of the Moyenne the Garonne. This cultivation of cereals prevailed on the hills limestones and molassic, located on both sides the Garonne and Lot, like between these two rivers. Great richness of export (10 000 T) for the owners, the wheat was the great concern of the latter, which encouraged its extension to the detriment of the other productions, except for the Maïs which was to nourish the workers of the fields. The Vigne recorded a strong development. However the Vin S of quality very few, were then installed on the slopes which produced in the majority of the cases, of the liqueur-like white wines, also called “wines rotted” because the vintage intervened the latest possible, like currently for the Sauternes. Known long time, the Prunier grafted (plum tree of Graft) extended largely to the 18th century around Clairac, Tonneins and Villeneuve-sur-Lot. Planted in the vines, it provided a very tasty fruit, being preserved perfectly and being able to be exported.
Some industrial plants made, they also the reputation of the Agenais. The Chanvre that the peasants worked in partnership with the Blé in the grounds of valley was used in particular with clothing and manufactures as ropes. As of the end of the 18th century, hemp moved back in front of the Tabac, because of the loss of the outlets in industry, and the end of the monopoly of the Compagnie of the Indies. Introduced in 1637 into the area of Clairac, the Tobacco, very quickly under the control of the State, was to acquire a great notoriety very quickly and to cause a true passion in the farmers all around Tonneins.
Changes of agriculture during and the beginning of the 20th century
In 1856, the agricultural sector made live 68% of the population of Lot-et-Garonne and occupied more than 70% of the active . In 1946, more half of the inhabitants of Lot-et-Garonne still depended on the agricultural activities and a higher number (57%) always found an employment in this branch. Between these two dates, the rise of putting forward direct made it possible in the majority of the owners to be a Master of their farming choices. The Métayage, very widespread at the 19th century disappears completely after the Second world war.
This transformation of the structures of exploitation is accompanied by change in the cultivation methods. After having increased during all the 19th century to reach 58,7% in 1897, the share of the arable lands regresses with the profit of the meadows and the specialized cultures, whereas the Vignoble sees reduced planted surfaces of half (35 000 ha in 1936) in relation to the crisis of the Phylloxera and exclusion of the Zone of name “Bordeaux”. Occupying less than 10.000 ha in first half of the 20th century, Fruit S and Légume S have, altogether, a very modest importance. However their appearance is capital, because present for a long time, their rise in the new agricultural system corresponded to a larger influence of the cities, with a development of the railway network which opened broader commercial horizons just as an already underlined extension of the Polyculture. Thus, the Tomate was essential in the Western half and towards 1930, all the cantons of the Arrondissement of Marmande produced more than 1000 quintals of tomatos. The development was related to exports of fresh tomatos towards the capital or the foreign countries, like with an increased request of the Conserveurs. In the valley of the Batch and that of the Garonne, with the liking of the national request, one cultivated the Oignon S, the Asperge S then the cauliflowers of winter, the Carotte S, the Céleri, the Salsifis, the Garden peas, the French beans and finally the melon. During the same period, the Lot-et-Garonne became a fruit-bearing area. The Prunier of Graft was more particularly collected in the Villeneuvois. The diseases which affected the tree, the climatic conditions caused too many variations in harvests to resist the competition of prunes of California. The chasselas constituted a great innovation during its introduction towards 1880 - 1885 to Port-Sainte-Marie and Prayssas. Are added to it the development of the plantations of Pommier S, Pêcher S, Cerisier S, Poirier S and Abricotier S in the slopes then in the two large valleys.
Less and less many farmers
Majority in the population of Lot-et-Garonne at the time of the Second world war, the farmers are not it any more as of the beginning of the Années 1960. The reduction in the agricultural active population developed then: a little more than 50.000 credits in 1962, 25.600 in 1982, less than 15.000 according to the estimates of 2005 (more by integrating seasonal employment). The reduction of the population of the agricultural households is a little stronger because of the reduction in the number of the people in the Family unit. In spite of that the Lot-et-Garonne still counts a proportion of agricultural credits higher than the French average. That is due mainly to the resistance of the small-scale farmings directed in specialized productions which use an important labor. The number of exploitations fell by half between 1979 and today, passing of more than 17.000 to 8.100 in the estimate of 2005. In parallel, the intermediate size of the exploitations did not cease growing between these same dates to reach 36 ha in 2005 against hardly 20 ha in 1979. Curiously, the share of the exploitations of less than five ha remains stable (close to 25%), either because of the intensity of the agricultural production when they are vegetables, in particular under greenhouses, or more surely by continuation of an activity in farms in the process of discontinuance of business. In fact the exploitations count between 5 and 50 ha which moves back expressed as a percentage and of number, with the profit of that of more than 50 ha which is from now on more than 2.000. If this evolution affects the exploitations practitioner Polyculture and breeding, it relates to especially those which were directed towards the cultivation of cereals and the Oléagineux as those which are devoted almost only to the breeding. In fact the slopes are especially touched by this evolution. This one should continue in an inexorable way because of the big part of the old farmers: 1/3 have between 50 and 60 years, nearly 25% have more than 60 years. This situation influences the modes of development and the structures of the farms. Whereas the farming by the owner, characteristic of the family dimension of agriculture in Lot-et-Garonne, occupied 80% of the useful agricultural Surface (SAU) in 1980, its share fell to less than 50% according to the estimates from 2005, with the only profit of the Fermage which is the mode today dominating. The Share-cropping, a long time very represented, in particular in the Marmandais, at the origin of many claims on which the Communist party sat its representation, almost disappeared. It is increasingly difficult to enter the occupation of farmer or to take the continuation of a family exploitation, because the Break-even point regularly rose. Thus surface minimum to allow the installation of a young farmer is of 17 ha in the plain and 23 ha in the slopes. However, the hectare of arable land in the plains of the Garonne and the Batch is worth 5.400 euros in 2005,5 000 euros in the southern slopes of the Garonne, less than 2.500 euros in the oriental party of the Greenhouses or the Fumélois. Even if the monetary value has not progressed any more for a few years, these amounts are raised and that explains the success of the tenant farming partly. These changes are accompanied by a progression of the agriculture of group. One counts 421 GAEC thus (agricultural Groupement of joint exploitation). The farmers batch-and-garonnais, like their counterparts of the other French agricultural areas, benefitted from the common Agricultural policy. Admittedly, the latter played little in the field of the fruit and vegetables, crossed however by many and sometimes severe crises in relation to the fall of the prices, the Surproduction and the Concurrence of the countries of the south of Europe. Until the Years 1990, FNSEA and MODEF were the two most influential trade unions in Lot-et-Garonne, the first with the head of the Chambre of agriculture when the second confined himself in a role of opposition in the defense of the small-scale farmings. The reform of the CAP to the beginning of the year 1990 deeply modified the power struggles between trade unions with the rise to power of the Peasant confederation and especially of the rural Coordination. In the campaigns, signs or other symbols denounced the programmed death of the small family agriculture. This phase of intense country anger benefitted a little the Peasant confederation and more still with the Rural Coordination which assumed the chairmanship of the Room of agriculture. The recent poll, in 2007, confirmed the weight Rural Coordination, rather of right-hand side, whose list asserted “to nourish men deserves a worthy income”. It thus keeps the Room of Agriculture without being in a majority. FNSEA gathers a third of the members of the various colleges, MODEF remains stable to 11% and the Peasant confederation crumbles to 9%.
Agricultural production at the beginning of the 21e century
If the Lot-et-Garonne remains an area of Polyculture S in relation to the small dimension of the exploitations of the family type and the will to distribute the risk as a practitioner several cultures on sufficiently rich grounds to support a intensive Production, specialization in the vegetable cultures is essential and progresses during the fifty last years. The force of these changes was analyzed for the exploitations of the southern slopes during the last half-century. With leaving the Second world war, the standard exploitation shared its surfaces and drew its incomes in three great thirds: breeding, Cereal S, Vine associated with fruit trees. In 2000, the distribution is basically different, especially the incomes are not directly related to the occupied surface. The vine and the breeding crumbled. The field crops, cereals and oilseeds occupy more half of the grounds but contribute more modestly to the turnover of the farm. The vegetable cultures and those of seeds of Betterave S increased their importance in surface and it is they which ensure the financial re-entries most important. It is the result of progress of the organization as regards marketing as well as the influence of the large firms for the beet seeds. On the other hand, most of northern the slopes chose to specialize in the field crops and the breeding.
These changes find in the full value of the agricultural production in Lot-et-Garonne estimated in 2005 at 655.000 euros, that is to say almost six times more than in 1960, or twice as much as in 1980. After regresshaving slightly regressed with the profit of the breeding between 1960 and 1970, the share of the vegetable productions in this end value reaches 73% in 2005. If the cereals contribute to it for a little more than 10%, the weight of the vegetable and fruit-bearing cultures is important, about 30%. This constitutes one of the strong characteristics of agriculture batch-and-garonnaise. The breeding is in fold, directed more towards meat the Production than of Lait. The Cereal production arrives definitely at the head as well by the occupied surfaces as by the turnover (119 million euros in 2005).
The culture of the Blé is old, present in all the agricultural areas of Lot-et-Garonne. It was not the case of the Maïs whose culture progressed in a very spectacular way because of the attractive prices and the considerable investments carried out by the communities, in particular the General advice of Lot-et-Garonne, to multiply the capacities of Irrigation. In 2005,38% of the useful agricultural Surface is irrigated, that is to say more than 110.000 ha. Initially the Maïs could develop in the plains of the the Garonne and the Lot, then it gained the slopes at the rate/rhythm of the construction of water reserves in the areas collinaires. One counts today more than 3000 lakes to which the theoretical capacity is close to 90 million m3. This strategy reached today its limits with climate warming. Never the low water levels of the Garonne were also modest these last years, never the lakes collinaires were not also deprived of water. The owners gradually give up corn on the grounds most difficult to sprinkle: between 2004 and 2005, the surfaces devoted to corn passed from 60.000 to 49.000 ha and the Rendement S strongly fell.
Among the Oleaginous , the Sunflower, cultivated in dryness, benefits from the retreat of corn on the not easily irrigable grounds. It occupies in 2005,34 000 ha, that is to say 6000 of more than in 2004. The sunflower was spread in the southern and northern slopes of Lot-et-Garonne where it occupies on average from 10 to 35% of the SAU. It is particularly present in the Néracais where its diffusion must much with the influence of the owners close to Gers. The Colza is always preceded by the Soja which covers nearly 10.000 ha, in zone irrigated with more than 90%. The turnover of the oilseeds is of 33 million euros.
The weight of the fruit-bearing and vegetable die is measured more with the turnover carried out than with the acreages. Three productions are detached clearly: 65 million euros for the plum with prunes, 35 million euros each one for the strawberry and the Tomato. These values recover the whole of the activities of the die and not only the turnover of the farmers. The Lot-et-Garonne indeed counts a score of establishments of transformation of prunes and about thirty stations of conditioning for the fruit and vegetables. There exists also a Marché of national interest to Agen and very active deprived traders with Agen, Marmande and Villeneuve-sur-Lot.
The orchard of plum with prune (plum tree of Graft) covers more than 8.000 ha and delivered nearly 100.000 T in 2005 (one needs then three kg of plums of Graft to obtain 1kg prunes of Agen). Its dynamism is due to the control of the operations by the die organized around the interprofessional Bureau of the prune (IBP) which aims to control the market and to ensure the promotion and the marketing of the “Pruneau of Agen”. The IBP (created in 1963) knew to pass the bad course of the Années 1970 (bad harvests and too low price) and to obtain the support of Brussels. The producers obtained the inscription of the 118 cantons of the surface of production in a IGP (geographical Identification protected) which guarantees the origin and the Traçabilité of prunes of Agen. The die remains however very sensitive to the climatic risks and the variations of the request.
The culture of the strawberry covers nearly 700 ha for a production always higher than 12.000 T, which places the Lot-et-Garonne at the first rank to Aquitaine (with the the Dordogne) and in France. The strawberry is economically important for the department of Lot-et-Garonne where it accounts for 20% of the turnover of the fruit and vegetables and approximately 10% of the agricultural turnover of the department. The culture of the strawberry makes live approximately a thousand of exploitations and delivers nearly the quarter of the French strawberries, in particular the variety Gariguette which becomes ripe at the beginning of the month of April. This precocity allows to the producers strawberries of the department of Lot-et-Garonne to precede the producers of the other French departments and to occupy only the market during the three weeks located between the end of the Spanish and Moroccan imports, and the arrival on the market of the production of other departments. Very strong competition causes a regular drop on behalf of the production batch-and-garonnaise since ten years. Hitherto cultivated in “full field” the various varieties of strawberry are today placed under plastic shelter and more and more are the subject of a culture except ground to take again the initiative vis-a-vis competition. It is in Lot-et-Garonne, that the strawberry Except ground gains the most ground, with today 65 ha. The production of strawberry is present throughout the two valleys of the Garonne and of the Batch, it also gained the slopes close especially near the principal centers to trade: Marmande, Nérac and Agen.
the Tomate is a production intended at the same time for the market of the expenses and the processing industry. During very a long time, the department had remained at the head in France for the volume of tomato, losing its position only during the Eighties. The Lot-et-Garonne carries out approximately 10% more French production. The production of preserve tomato is made in full field and is contractual, i.e. before the season of the agreements between producers and conservatives made, bearing on a price and tonnages to be delivered. This production is much less intensive than that of tomatos of forwarding which is much neater and speculative. This explains why the preserve tomato covers even more than 600 ha (twice less however than in 1980) for a production of almost 50.000 T. The tomato intended for the market of fresh produce does not cease moving back on the surface, 229 ha in 2005, because the Culture in full field yields the step to the cultures under greenhouses, except ground more and more. The production of tomatos for the Marché of the expenses is of 38.000 tons in 2005, that is to say appreciably less than preserve tomato. The Marmandais, cradle of origin of the introduction of this culture, only provides to him approximately 23.000 tons. It is in this city that one of the most important exploitations of except ground developed of France, on about fifteen hectares. It was a question of answering the Spanish threat with the entry of this country in the European Union and of spreading out the delivery over more a long period. Very organized within various co-operatives for better controlling the prices and the setting in market, the producers remain subjected to a sharp competition, source of divisions between the organizations, and they must enter from now on networks of marketing dominated by the farmers of the south and the west of France.
the Vigne covers more than 8.000 ha, delivers nearly 400.000 hl what represents nearly 5% of the turnover of departmental agriculture, that is to say appreciably the same thing as the Blé. Thanks to the efforts of the local wine growers the vine and the Vin use a production of quality profiting from the label AOC (Appellation of controlled origin). Three zones dominate both for the surfaces the quantities: the Pays of Lasted, the Côtes of Marmandais (Beaupuy and Cocumont) and, especially, the vineyard of Buzet. All have jointly to be animated by cooperative wine caves which knew to make progress quality, to open new outlets, but are subjected to a sharp competition. Thus, those of Cocumont and Marmande had to amalgamate and operate painful reorganizations. Some local wines, like that of the Coasts of Brulhois, supplement this range.
Great areas of agricultural production
The alluvial plains gather the richest grounds, of the owners directed towards the market, and the main part of the specialized cultures of Lot-et-Garonne. They are followed by transportation routes fast, recent, allowing an accelerated forwarding of the products, thanks to the presence of many cities which bring multiple services. As a whole, the small-scale farmings are lower than 15 ha, often even much less. The Irrigation is the rule almost everywhere, with a preponderance of individual pumpings in the tablecloth or directly in the two rivers. Not being able to face his family with the work requested from the moment of the collection of the fruits or vegetables, in full summer, the owner calls upon Saisonnierrs S. MSA counts in 2005 more than 28.000 paid in agriculture. The major part of these employees are seasonal workers. They came from Spain, more particularly from the provinces of the South, or of the Portugal. They arrive from now on Morocco: nearly 1000 in 2005 compared with less than 100 five years earlier. New currents currently take shape coming from the countries of the Europe of the East recently entered the EU. In the area of Marmande, cereals, cultures vegetable, tobacco (in retreat pronounced after closing the Manufacture of Tonneins) and Vigne dominate clearly. Even if the cereals use farming rotations, the vegetable and fruit-bearing vocation (in particular plum trees) of the valley of the Batch is marked with deliveries more directed towards preserve. The sector of Agen, of the junction of the Batch to that of the Tarn with the the Garonne, while giving much place to the vegetable and fruit-bearing cultures, east can be less specialized of the three.
Slopes and hills largely develop as soon as one leaves the plains and terraces of the large valleys, except spaces densément wooded of the south-western and north-eastern quarters. Indeed, in the Moors and the Fumélois, where more than 40% of the registered surface is wooded, the Forestry development dominates, agriculture remaining an ancillary activity within the framework of small units less than 10 ha whose owners occupied an employment complementary in rather many industrial plants to Casteljaloux or to Fumel.
In spite of a certain number of nuances, one observes many similarities under the conditions of production of the hills and slopes of Lot-et-Garonne. The grounds are concentrated there in the hands of some peasants: the units frequently exceed there 50 ha and dimension increases as one moves away from the valleys. The situation with the variation of the great transport infrastructures influences the possible types of cultures in the slopes and the hills and, consequently, the quantity of ground necessary to an agricultural household to live on the exploitation. Breeding and fodder cultures are the agricultural main activities of the slopes located at the north of the valley of the Garonne and the Batch. Surfaces always bleaches on grass some are very widespread there, occupying 30% of the SAU and giving place to an exploitation in the form of Foin, supplemented by Fourrage S where the Orge occupies a dominating place. This explains the existence of an important herd of Bovin S, approximately 45% of the departmental manpower, leaves which is still of increase. Between the Batch and the Garonne, in the Greenhouses of the Resident of Agen, one finds same dualism: traditional cultivation of cereals, oilseeds, fodder, natural meadows and grounds of course for the cattle, the breeding taking an extensive character sometimes. In the south of the Garonne, Néracais is marked by association cultivation of cereals and oilseeds, the progressing Tournesol more. The vegetable cultures exist in the communes closest to Agen. The vine is maintained near the wine co-operative of Buzet, but also while going towards the Condomois (Armagnac). Finally between Casteljaloux and Marmande reign the mixed-farming associating specialized cereals (important place given to corn), cultures and breeding.
Leitartikel: Geography of Lot-et-Garonne
EconomyLeitartikel: Saving in Lot-et-Garonne
The extreme point of the forest landaise covers the south-west of the department: the Moors of the Batch and the Garonne. In south-east, the vine growing dominates (Armagnac), as in the extreme north where in particular the Coast-of-Lasted are the prolongation of the Vignoble the Of Bordeaux one. In the north of the Garonne, cultures and breeding are associated. The valleys are the field of the truck farming and the fruit-bearing cultures (prunes of Agen). The principal industrial sites are Marmande, Tonneins, Fumel and Agen. Their industries are diversified and of modest size. The axis of transport Bordeaux - Toulouse crosses the department (channel, TGV, Autoroute). The Lot-et-Garonne is the first producer of France of kiwis, hazel nuts and strawberries. In addition to the wine of Lasted - fatherland of Marguerite - one finds Buzet, the coast of Marmande. Surface: 5.361 km ²; population (1999): 305.380 inhabitants; population density: 57 inhabitants/km ².
TourismRural and river tourism (200 km of inland waterways), Country houses, castles, Gastronomy, golfs, estival festivals.
Green lane (cycle track) of 87 km along the Channel of the Garonne. Véloroute (route cyclist) along the valley of the Batch. Leitartikel: Tourism in Lot-et-Garonne Producer country of holidays, with the wire of the Eau, soft climate but the winter can be cold some time, excursions, almost all that is natural will find it here to you. Bodegas, festivals pastoral, etc, the Gastronomie are not any more has to make unfortunately it becomes very difficult to find an old residence to be repaired because our friends of on the other side of the channel one almost very acquired they were not mistaken there but there are still many possibilities to be established on its account lodgings, restoration, Tourisme and many other things still it is a very pleasant department has to live with very many country houses and castles and ideally located on the geographical point the Pyrenees at 2:30 the Océan has 2:00 and the the Mediterranean has hardly 4:00 it has besides at the borrowed architectural level has its close neighbors, Moors, Gers, the Dordogne, the Gironde what makes there a very soft country look at and to visit from its diversity. In the north of the department full of mill on Dropt can be visited.
Recovered of “http://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tourisme_en_Lot-et-Garonne” -->
PolicyLeitartikel: Political of Lot-et-Garonne
- the Communities of communes of Lot-et-Garonne
- List of the deputies of Lot-et-Garonne
- List of the senators de Lot-et-Garonne
- List of the general advisers of Lot-et-Garonne
AdministrationLeitartikel: Administration of Lot-et-Garonne
List of the prefects of Common Lot-et-Garonne
- of Lot-et-Garonne
- Old communes of Lot-et-Garonne
Personalities, Batch-and-Garonnais famous
- Chimène Badi, singer of French variety.
- Jean François-Poncet, senator de Lot-et-Garonne, chairs commission of the foreign affairs of the Senate, former president of the general advice
- Georges Leygues, French Politician (Député, Ministre of the Navy, chairs Commission of the Foreign affairs, creator of the tomb of the unknown soldier with Paris)
- Marianne Alespée (16th century), mistress of Henri II of Albret which made renovate for it the Château of Lagrange-Monrepos;
- Abdelatif Benazzi
- Francis Cabrel, born the November 23rd 1953 with Agen, is a French singer. Francis Cabrel is close to the political life of the commune of Astaffort. It was indeed elected city council man in March 1989.
- Michel Montallier, Song writer and performer installed in the Lot-et-Garonne
- François Darlan (1881-1942) known as the admiral Darlan, admiral and French politician, born with Nérac, wire of a mayor of Nérac.
- Armand Fallières (1841-1931), French Politician, mayor of Nérac, appointed Lot-et-Garonne, minister then president of the French Republic.
- Albert Ferrasse, former president of FR and current president of the foundation which bears its name.
- Michel Polnareff, Song writer and performer, born with Nérac in 1944
- Philippe Sella
Léo Melliet, member of the council of the Common of Paris, appointed Lot-et-Garonne, born with Lévignac-with-Guyenne in 1843
- Farmhouse-of Resident of Agen
- Cocumont, and in the canton of Cocumont:
- the Meilhan-on-Garonne
- Warp end-in Agenais
- Saint-Pardoux-of-Breuil the
- General advice
- the Prunes saphy
- Lot-et-Garonne: churches of the High Resident of Agen
- Directory of the professionals of Lot-et-Garonne
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