Local History

La Neuveville. Photo/Foto: TES.

The City of La Neuveville

The city of La Neuveville (canton of Bern) is part of the (French-speaking) Jura and the administrative region of Jura bernois. La Blanche Eglise, built in the Carolingian period, is mentioned in a document from 866 and fell under the abbey of Moutier-Grandval.

The chapel came under the administration of the abbey of Bellelay in 1141 after the Prince-Bishopric of Basel had obtained secular rights in this area from the monastery of Moutier-Grandval in 999.

The Prince-Bishopric of Basel founded the city of Neuveville (Neuenstadt in German) around 1320. It has always been a small town, around 1700 it had about 800 inhabitants, but in this period it was a refuge for thousands of Huguenots after the revocation of the Edict of Nantes by Louis XIV (1685).

Neuveville had already adopted the Protestant faith in 1530 but remained part of the Prince-Bishopric until 1798.

France annexed the southern part of this Prince-Bishopric in 1798, after it had added the northern part of the Prince-Bishopric to the department of Mont-Terrible in 1792, from 1800 part of the new department of Haut-Rhin.

After the French defeat in 1813, Neuveville was assigned to the canton of Bern.

La Blanche Eglise has endured all this political unrest and has been thoroughly renovated in recent decades and is still the symbol of the beautiful medieval town of La Neuveville, the official name since 1948.