Versailles was a French territory

The Versailles Peace Treaty and its effects

The peace treaty came into force on January 10, 1920. On June 28, 1919, it was signed by the German Reich in protest in the Hall of Mirrors of the Versailles Palace.

The Versailles Treaty

After the armistice was signed in November 1918, the victorious powers USA, France and Great Britain negotiated the peace treaty from January onwards. The German Reich was not admitted to the talks that lasted until May 1919. Only later was it possible to submit written submissions. However, this resulted in hardly any changes to the contract.

The treaty formally ended the First World War. Among other things, he obliged the German Reich to disarm, assign territories and pay high reparations. The Saar area was mainly affected by the Saar Statute of the Versailles Treaty.

The effects on the Saar region

At first it was unclear whether the Saar area would belong to France or the German Reich after the war. The Saar Statute stipulated that the coal mines would become French property.

An area of ‚Äč‚Äčaround 1900 square kilometers, the Saar area, was subordinated to the newly founded League of Nations. It included the coal mines, the associated industry and the workers' living quarters. A referendum was planned after 15 years. The population should decide whether to maintain the status or to join France or the German Reich.

Basis of independence

The large economic area up to the Rhine and the Prussian social system no longer existed. Many economic relationships were ended, and the connection between the Saarland and Lorraine mining industries no longer existed. The League of Nations government, which was initially headed by the French Victor Rault, led to Franco-German tensions.

Nevertheless, the Versailles Treaty laid the basis for the independence of the Saar region. Because the unit established at that time has largely been preserved to this day. The name changed to Saarland only after the end of the Second World War.