Château de Hautségur

2014 Grant of $15,000—Boston Chapter

Built in the 12th century, the Château de Hautségur overlooks the Ardèche Valley and was originally a watchtower for the château de Ventadour nearby and was part of a network of roads since Roman times.

Partially destroyed during the Wars of Religion, it was reconstructed at the end of the 16th century. The watchtower became a real château during its reconstruction in the 16th century. The added watch turrets were damaged during the French Revolution.

It remained in the family until 1752 before being sold and renamed Hautségur. Since the 18th century, numerous families owned the château and the estate had been divided between several owners. In 2012, the current owner succeeded in reunifying the entire estate after two years of negotiations with the various owners. This illustrates the difficulties faced by châteaux owners to preserve inherited estates – a critical first-step before restoration work, now underway, could even begin.