Mahieu Jan

Mahieu Jan
Mahieu Jan

Jan Mahieu-Liebaert was born in Roeselare on November 12th, 1874. He was elected mayor of the city in 1908, and held his office until 1946. During World War I, he often took a stand for his city, mediating between the city’s inhabitants and the German Ortskommandant. When most of Roeselare was evacuated in 1917, Jan Mahieu went to Brussels. He was succeeded by acting mayor Pieter Staessens. Mahieu returned to Roeselare towards the end of 1918 to take leadership of the city’s reconstruction.…

Matten Julien

Matten Julien
Matten Julien

Born in Boezinge, near Ypres, Julien Matten was 10 years old when he found himself caught in the chaos and panic of the first German chlorine gas attack in the Steenstraat on April 22nd, 1915. Along with his 14-year old sister Emma and their 22-year old neighbour Marie Desaegheer, who was deaf, Julien fled towards Roeselare. It was not long before they fell in the hands of the Germans. The trio ended up in a German trench, where they did not receive a warm welcome. They were sent away by a Germ…

Monteyne Leontine

Monteyne Leontine
Monteyne Leontine

Leontine Monteyne was born in Ingelmunster on March 18th, 1989. During World War I, Leontine was twice captured and detained by the German occupier.  On October 11th, 1915, Leontine was arrested after hostile song lyrics about the German Emperor had been discovered in her home. She was imprisoned at Halle an der Saale, in the federal state of Saksen-Anhalt.  Based on reports in the journal of Ernest Schotte, Leontine was not the only woman in the region that was arrested in October 1915: “A…