I realize that most people have no interest in French history. Generally, I’m one of them. For my Tales from the Archives story, however, I found myself sucked into a black hole of research for this piece and I thought perhaps I would share a few links with all of you. These are all pieces of the story. If you’re interested in the facts behind my fiction, I encourage you do a little light reading. :)
Amédée Bollée. French inventor known for his work with steam vehicles.
Prince Phillipe d’Orleans, Count of Paris. Died at Stowe House in September 1894 (apparently after giving Doctor Sound a tip off about the case in Paris).
Gaston Migeon. Curator of the Objets d’Art at the Louvre from 1889-1930 (year of his death). Note: this link is to the translated English version of a French site.
My original research placed the medallion of Catherine di Medici in the Louvre, but it now appears in the Bibliothèque Nationale de France in Paris.
While Catherine was responsible for the introduction of the fork to the French table, she was indeed quite adept with a spoon also. Those Medicis, always poisoning one person or another.
For more information on Diane de Poitiers, I highly recommend this site, assembled by one of her descendents.
On the 26th of March, 1894, anarchist Jean Pauwels took a small bomb to La Madeleine church in Paris. While not really powerful enough to do the damage described in “From Paris, With Regret”, it did kill him when it exploded in his pocket. There’s an illustration available to view here.
I tried to include as much detail about the City of Light as I could, as it’s one of my favorite places in the world. If you’d like to see some of the settings from the story, check out the Hotel Crillion, the Place d la Concorde (1894, Google images), the Louvre, and the Champs-Elysees (painting, 1894).
The research isn’t essential to the story enjoyment, but there it is, in case you are of the curious mindset.
Au revoir pour maintenant!