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|Prefecture and commune|
The Moselle River
|Canton||Épinal-1 and 2|
|• Mayor (2008–2014)||Michel Heinrich|
|Area1||59.24 km2 (22.87 sq mi)|
|• Density||600/km2 (1,600/sq mi)|
|Time zone||CET (UTC+1)|
|• Summer (DST)||CEST (UTC+2)|
|INSEE/Postal code||88160 /88000|
315–492 m (1,033–1,614 ft) |
(avg. 340 m or 1,120 ft)
1 French Land Register data, which excludes lakes, ponds, glaciers > 1 km2 (0.386 sq mi or 247 acres) and river estuaries.2 Population without double counting: residents of multiple communes (e.g., students and military personnel) only counted once.
The old town centre features the Place des Vosges, the Chapitre district, Saint-Maurice's Basilica, medieval castle remains and the Roman House (11th and 13th centuries). It is also known for its parks and gardens, as well as a large communal forest with arboretum (the Arboretum de la Forêt d'Épinal).
There are major fortifications, extended and maintained until the early 20th century. There is a legend, among the populace of Épinal, that Napoleon's ghost strolls the wall ramparts on 9 September of each year at 05:00. It was on this day and at this time that, in 1811, Napoleon gave his first and last oration to the city of Épinal, wherein he addressed the challenges posed by northern expansion.
There is an American military cemetery on the outskirts of the town where United States service members killed in World War II are buried.
- Isabelle Cogitore (born 1964), historian
- Jean-Baptiste Jacopin (1755-1811), general of the armies of the 1st Republic and the First French Empire.
- Jean-Charles Pellerin (1756-1836), cartoonist, illustrator and French printer, famous for the popular images he printed from 1800.
- Simon Lefebvre (1768-1822), general of the armies of the 1st Republic and the First French Empire.
- Henri Hogard (1808-1880), geologist
- Jean-François Cerquand (1816-1888), discoverer of the monument de La Turbie.
- Paul Chevreux (1854-1913), archivist and historian of Vosges.
- Émile Durkheim (1858-1917), founder of sociology
- Louis-Ernest Mougenot-Méline, (1862-1929), architect
- Louis Lapicque (1866-1952), physiologist, specialist of the nervous system and known for his discovery of the chronaxie.
- Marcel Mauss (1872-1950), father of French modern ethnography and nephew of Émile Durkheim.
- Marc Boegner (1881-1970), writer, thinker and pastor, president of the Fédération protestante de France and the World Council of Churches, a member of the Académie française.
- Henry Daniel-Rops (1901-1965), writer and historian
- André Jacquemin (1904-1992), painter and engraver, member of the Académie des Beaux-arts de l’Institut de France.
- Jean-Marie Cavada (1940) journalist and politician.
- Louis Guillon (1887-1947), French politician, député of the Third Republic.
- Léo Valentin (1919-1956), French soldier and adventurer, nicknamed "l'homme-oiseau".
- Marceline Loridan-Ivens (1928), film director
- Odile Redon (1936-2007), historian, specialist of the Middle Ages
- Philippe Séguin (1943-2010), Mayor of Épinal, French politician, President of the Court of Auditors under the Fifth Republic.
- Bernard-Nicolas Aubertin (1944), bishop of Tours.
- Ségolène Royal (1953), completed her high school in Charmes, before joining the Lycée Saint-Joseph of Épinal in 1968.
- Laetitia Masson (1966), screenwriter and film director
- Laurent Mariotte (1969), presenter and food writer.
- Valérie Donzelli (1973), actress and film director
- Jeanne Cressanges, novelist, essayist
- Nicolas Matthieu (1978), writer, winner of the Prix Erckmann-Chatrian in 2014.
- Jean-Sébastien Petitdemange, (1966), author and radio and television host.
- Marie-Antoinette Gout, Righteous Among the Nations
- Gauthier Klauss (1987), canoeist.
- Matthieu Péché (1987), canoeist
- Aurore Mongel (1982), swimmer
- Damien Nazon (1974), rider
- Fabrice Lepaul (1976), football player
- Guillaume Cecutti (1970), football player
- Jean-Patrick Nazon (1977), rider
- Julien Bontemps (1979), windsurfer
- Maxime Mermoz (1986), rugby player
- Patrice Vicq (1944), football player
- Nacer Bouhanni (1990), rider
- Rayane Bouhanni (1996), brother of the former, also a rider
- Grégory Gaultier (1982), 2015 squash world champion
- Estelle Vuillemin (1984), mountain biker
Épinal is best known for the "Images d'Épinal" – which is now a common expression in French language – the popular prints created by a local company, the Imagerie d'Épinal, formerly known as the Imagerie Pellerin. These stencil-colored woodcuts of military subjects, Napoleonic history, storybook characters and other folk themes were widely distributed throughout the 19th century. The company still exists today, and still uses its hand-operated presses to produce the antique images. Other local industries include textiles, metals, morocco leather, precision instruments, and bicycles. There is a school of textile weaving.
SAS Épinal is based in the commune.
Épinal participates in town twinning to foster good international relations. Its current partners include:
- Jeanne Cressanges: installed in Épinal since 1968, novelist, essayist, screenwriter originally from Noyant in the Allier, who dedicated two of his works to his adopted region: "Je vous écris d’Épinal" and "Je vous écris des Vosges" éditions Serge Domini, respectively in 2009 and 2014.
- Nicolas Mathieu a le spleen des Vosges on lemonde.fr.
- "British towns twinned with French towns [via WaybackMachine.com]". Archant Community Media Ltd. Archived from the original on 5 July 2013. Retrieved 2013-07-20.
- "Schwäbisch Hall and its twin towns". Stadt Schwäbisch Hall. Retrieved 2013-07-26.