Massacre of El Ouffia

The Massacre of El Ouffia on 6 April 1832, during the French conquest of Algeria, was a war crime committed by the troupes coloniales under Colonel Maximilien Joseph Schauenburg against the tribe of El Ouffia near El Harrach.[1]

Massacre of the El Ouffia tribe
Part of the French conquest of Algeria
Native nameمجزرة العوفية
LocationMitidja, French Algeria
Date6 April 1832
TargetAlgerians of the El Ouffia tribe
Deaths100 civilians killed, only 4 survive
Perpetrators France
No. of participants
Chasseurs d'Afrique
300 cavalry of the French Foreign Legion
DefendersSeveral members of the El Ouffia tribe

Historical ContextEdit

The arrival of the Duc de Rovigo in Algiers in December 1831, in order to establish the French colonial power in Mitidja, coincided with the reconfiguration of the regiments of troupes coloniales involved in the offensive against the Algerian resistance fighters scattered all around the Casbah of Algiers.[2]

The Chasseurs d'Afrique were created by virtue of an ordinance of 17 November 1831 to establish the presence of cavalry capable of rapid incursions into the heart of rebel areas in French North Africa.[3] Formed of four squadrons, this regiment of horsemen immediately began targeting the insurrectionary tribes around Algiers.[4]

The members of le 1er régiment de chasseurs d'Afrique proved to be disciplined and reliable, and were placed under the command of Colonel Maximilien Joseph Schauenburg in order to guarantee the pacification of the suburbs of Algiers.[5]

Raid on El OuffiaEdit

Colonel Schauenburg's cavalry regiment began its raids against the tribes around Algiers (Fahs) in a bloodthirsty and macabre way in the sad attack of the tribe of El Ouffia near the course of Oued El Harrach, which had taken place on 6 April 1832, just five months after the formation of this new regiment.[6]

While this regiment was being equipped with arms and supplies, Colonel Schauenbourg received from Governor Savary the sudden order to leave the Algiers encampment at night towards the bank of Oued El Harrach in a first mission against the Algerians.[7]

The horsemen then began a nocturnal and silent march, but which was an ordinary prelude to the raid and carnage which was being prepared against the civilians of the tribe of El Ouffia.[8]

This column of horsemen was led by General Faudoas, who was an officer of the First French Empire like his colleague Colonel Schauenbourg, and this punitive expedition was intended to punish the tribe of El Ouffia and other neighboring allied tribes who were considered dangerous against the French colonial presence in Algiers.[9]


General Marquis de Faudoas arrived with Colonel Schauenburg and their horsemen on the night of 6 April 1832 at the village of El Ouffia while the members of the tribe were asleep in their tents.[10]

By virtue of the strict instructions of the general-in-chief, the Duc de Rovigo, this expeditionary body of troops from Algiers had the task of slaughtering all the unfortunate civilians of El Ouffia without sparing a single one of them, including women, children and the elderly.[11]

The sleeping Algerians were surprised at dawn on 7 April 1837, and all were slain without a single one of them even attempting to defend themselves.[12]

None managed to escape the massacre, with the horsemen of General Faudoas scrupulously following their orders to make no distinction regarding the age or sex of their Algerian victims.[13]

On the return of this shameful and criminal expedition which carried out the massacre of unarmed and sleeping civilians, the riders of Schauenburg's regiment carried at the entrance to the city of Algiers the heads of their victims at the ends of their spears.[14]


See alsoEdit

External linksEdit


  • Revue de Paris, Tome 5. Brussels: Bureau de la Revue de Paris. 1844. p. 105.

French conquest videosEdit


  1. ^ "Revue des deux mondes". 1860.
  2. ^ "L'Univers: Histoire et description de tous les peuples". 1850.
  3. ^ "L'Algérie ancienne et moderne, etc. Vignettes par Raffet et Rouargue frères". 1844.
  4. ^ Galibert, Léon (1843). "Histoire de l'Algérie ancienne et moderne depuis les premiers établissements des Carthaginois jusques et y compris les dernières campagnes du général Bugeaud: Avec une introduction sur les divers systèmes de colonisation qui ont précédé la conquête française".
  5. ^ "Histoire de l'ancienne Légion Étrangère créée en 1831, licenciée en 1838. (Première partie. Organisation, travaux et opérations militaires de la Légion en Afrique en 1831, 1832, 1833, 1834, 1835 par le général J. Bernelle.-Deuxième partie. Opérations militaires de la Légion en Espagne en 1835, 1836, 1837 par A. De Colleville.) [Edited by A. De Colleville.]". 1850.
  6. ^ Grad, Charles (1889). "L'Alsace: Le pays et ses habitants".
  7. ^ "L'Algérie. Histoire, géographie, climatologie, etc". 1865.
  8. ^ Hue, Fernand (1887). "Le 1er régiment de chasseurs d'Afrique: 60 illustrations de Gil Baer".
  9. ^ Dhur, Jacques (1899). "Le père d'Émile Zola: Les prétendues lettres Combe[s] (Lettre à M. Le procureur de la République".
  10. ^ admin (2014-04-07). "Cela s'est passé un 7 avril 1832 : Massacre de la tribu El Ouffia d'El Harrach". Babzman (in French). Retrieved 2021-03-05.
  11. ^ "Revue de Paris". 1844.
  12. ^ De Mont-Rond, P. E. (1847). "Histoire de la conquête de l'Algérie de 1830 à 1847".
  13. ^ "Annales algériennes". 1854.
  14. ^ Fillias, Achille (1860). Histoire de la conquête et de la colonisation de l'Algérie (1830-1860) (in French). Arnauld de Vresse.