Philippe François Marie, comte de Hauteclocque was a French
general during World War II, but he changed his legal name to incorporate his French
resistance alias Jacques-Philippe Leclerc and throughout France he is generally known as
just Maréchal Leclerc.
General Maréchal Leclerc was a French Commander who fought in North Africa and upon
returning to France, he led the 2nd Armoured Division and with support from the 4th
Division of the American Infantry, it led to the liberation of Paris from German Occupation in August 1944.
The Mayor of Paris, Jacques Chirac, inaugurated this museum, the Memorial of the
Liberation of Paris on 24th August 1994, which was the 50th anniversary of the liberation
of Paris from German Occupation.
The museum displays some personal items of General Maréchal Leclerc, including jackets
and a helmet that he used to wear whilst in Africa and China, plus walking canes.
Along with the personal effects, there are also documents, photos and files of General
Maréchal Leclerc and coded messages of the 2nd Armoured Division which he led.
There are lots of audio and visual exhibits and one particular area has lots of screens
(around 14) that project moving images, which shows the visitor what it was like in
occupied Paris, and the Liberation of Paris, plus there are testimonies, war images and
even charts that make it easy to follow the course of the war.
The museum is located in the 15th Arrondissement of Paris above the tracks of the
Montparnasse train station and there are several ways to get to the Memorial. One
entrance is through the Gare Montparnasse and on the second floor of the station is a
stairway on the left that leads to the Atlantic Garden on the roof which the Memorial
borders on and there are also two elevators. One elevator is located in front of 4
Rue du Cdt. René Mouchette and the other is in front of 25 Boulevard de Vaugirard, plus
there is a stairway in the building opposite this particular elevator.
As well as the permanent exhibitions, there are also temporary exhibits at different times
of the year and the Mémorial du Maréchal Leclerc de Hauteclocque et de la Libération de
Paris is only closed on a Monday and on national holidays.
The little known yet interesting museum is open from 10am through to 6pm from a Tuesday to
Address & Contact Details:
Mémorial du Maréchal Leclerc de Hauteclocque et de la Libération de Paris
23 Allée de la 2e Division Blindée
Jardin Atlantique (covering la gare Montparnasse)
Telephone: 1 40 64 39 44