Chateaubriand and Surcouf
Witness of Chateaubriand games and a famous dual of Surcouf
On the beach, at the foot of the Fort, when Chateaubriand (1768-1848) was a kid, he used to climb the breakwaters and to run into the waves with his friends. He explained in his memoir " Mémoires d’Outre-Tombe " that he fell one day with them in the water and their old nurses save them.
Chateaubriand is burried on the Grand Bé island, few meters away from the Fort National. The Fort was also the theater of more originals events. The famous corsair Robert Surcouf (1773-1827) fought against 12 Prussian officers at the foot of the Royal Fort, one of the most important dual of our history.
It remains a military expedition punished by the State. Each corsair had a letter of marque that gave him the autorization. Without this letter, the captain, then presumed pirate, was attached at his yardarm. The French corsairs were the first ones, and among them, people from Dunkirk and St Malo.
Within 5 years of fighting, British corsairs took us 375 boats and French corsairs commandeered or sank 2266 English or allies ships. Extract from Surcouf corsaire written by Jean de la Varende.