EVACUATION, PHONY WAR
AND COLLAPSE, MAY-JUNE 1940
From 1939 to 1940
On September 1, 1939, Germany invaded Poland. Immediately, France mobilized its troops.
The total evacuation of the Alsace-Moselle border area over a distance of ten kilometres is ordered. More than 600,000 Alsatians and Mosellans are forced to leave, taking with them the bare minimum, leaving behind their homes and possessions. They are directed to host departments such as the Charente, the Vienne, the Dordogne . . .
This exodus lasted until July 1940, when the evacuees were repatriated by the German authorities.