Wednesday, April 16, 2014
Orleans, France and the Loire River
  Orléans, France

Today there are three soldiers from the 137th Infantry who are still living in Wichita.

Train sent in 1952 by the school children of Wichita. It is located in Pasteur Park in Orléans.

Original Joan of Arc statue was presented in 1970 by the people of Orléans, but was removed due to concerns about its condition. The copy was cast and rededicated and stands by the Wichita Main Library.

Orléans is a city in north-central France, about 130km (80 miles) southwest of Paris and is the capital of the Loiret department.

The city is on a strategic point on the Loire river. With its bridge, it was able to charge tolls to those traveling to and from Paris in the north - thus becoming a wealthy city in the Middle Ages.

Joan of Arc liberated Orléans and she is honored to this day as the Maid of Orléans.

In 1306, the University of Orléans was granted the rights and privileges of a university.

During World War II, the Nazis turned the railroad station in Orléans into a major logistical hub. It was heavily bombed during the liberation.

In August 1944, the Americans including the 137th Infantry from the Kansas 35th Division liberated the people of Orléans from the Nazi occupation.

In 1973, Wichita and Orléans formally became sister cities.

Copyright 2011 by Wichita Sister Cities