“Here, on April 17, 1891, absolutely NOTHING happened”: where does this plaque in Le Havre come from?

At 177, boulevard de Strasbourg, in Le Havre, there is a plaque on which it is written “Here, on April 17, 1891, strictly NOTHING happened”. (©VM/76 actually)

It was one of the mysteries of Havre. What is this plate doing, under the 177 Strasbourg Blvd.indicating “Here, on April 17, 1891, absolutely NOTHING happened” ? Residents and neighboring businesses have had fun with it for many years, but it is impossible to determine since when exactly.

A collective, a comedian?

In fact, in this case, not easy to collect any information. For the City of Le Havre, it was a collective, which had installed this plaque. For Le Havre specialist Jean-François Masse, it is the work of a comedian. The historians consulted smile, but are unaware of its origin. Even Jean-Baptiste Gastinne, first deputy mayor, gives his tongue to the cat. Would omerta reign around this plate?

“It’s a joke! »

To find out for sure, we drew our pipes and magnifying glasses and went knocking on doors until we found Patrice Allonier-Belliot, owner of an apartment at number 177. “It’s a joke! laughs Le Havre, too proud of his joke. A friend gave us this plaque 15 years ago. Instead of leaving it in the basement, with the neighbors, we decided to put it on our building. There are plenty of places that say ‘so and so slept here, so and so lived there’, so we put up this plate. »

The funny plate, boulevard de Strasbourg, was installed 15 years ago by a resident of 177.
The funny plate, boulevard de Strasbourg, was installed 15 years ago by a resident of 177. (©VM/76 actually)

The tablet can easily be purchased on the internet. Besides, our great prankster is not the only one to have had this idea. You can meet her everywhere Francefrom Gemini (21)to Deshaies (Guadeloupe)Passing by Garnerans (01), Selestat (67) or Lautrec (81).

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“What’s funny is seeing people’s faces”

Patrice went so far as to install this plaque high up, “so that it doesn’t fall under people’s eyes”. This element, added to the fact that time has weathered it, makes it perfectly authentic. The joke only becomes tastier for its author. “People photograph it, we find it in treasure hunts, we even had someone on a blog who made a whole explanation about it, he revels. What’s funny is seeing their faces. They have a moment of waiting where they reflect, then they understand that they have been had! »

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