MAY 23rd, 1944

Auguste Cathala

Auguste CathalaOn May 23rd, 1944, searching for some maquisards in the region of Montjardin, the Germans arrived at the Vinsous farm, where the Cathala family lived.They forced Auguste Cathala in leading them to the Roudié farm where some of the partisans of the Maquis Faïta had taken refuge.

Near the farm, warned by his shouting, the maquisards escaped and hided in the woods. Furious, the Germans tortured Auguste Cathala and killed him. They destroyed the farm, threw the body of the young man inside and set everything on fire.

His courage and sacrifice helped the maquisards escape without loss.

Cathala farm

Vinsous farm

This is a part of a letter from Caplan to the Teisseyre family:

«Before night-fall, the young Cathala took me to the Faita Camp, the night before the attack on the Vinsous Farm by the Germans led by the Limoux militia. Before leaving his parent’s farm, Auguste gave me some bread and “cambajou*” to eat. I had not eaten for 24 hours. At dawn the next day, awoken and startled, we heard (I do not remember who told us or how) that we were going to be surrounded. We scattered around in the woods as far as possible from the camp. Hidden in the bush, we saw the attackers, heard the shots of the machine guns and saw the smoking above a small building and then, there was silence. Darkness came upon. We saw the flames but we did not know what kind of fate had fallen on Auguste. During the night we gathered together without water of food far away from the flames. At an unknown place deep in the woods Alcantara and Riffaut joined us …All my life I have lived with the anguish of this fire…»

* ham (in local dialect)

Cathala farm

Vinsous farm

Monument pour Auguste Cathala

Auguste Cathala

JULY 26th 1944

André Riffaut - Michel Gabin
Paul Alcantara
Attilio Donati - Ito
Auguste Pratz - Gaston

Two chiefs of the maquis Faïta , Riffaut and Alcantara, accompanied by Attilio Donati alias Ito”, Auguste Pratz alias “Gaston” and Bourges, were scouting in the vicinity of Lairière (Corbières), on July 26th 1944, looking for a new location for the maquis Faïta.

They ran into a German section, Donati and Prat been killed on the spot, Alcantara was wounded and died later on, Bourges was captured and Riffaut, who was also wounded, was taken captive by the Germans and he died later from his wound.


JULY 27th 1944


Helmut Thomas

Helmut Thomas

On July 27th, 1944, the Germans left their vehicle by the crossroad of the D 16 (from Sonnac to Camplimoux) and the D 63 (towards Courtauly). They headed towards the Col de la Flotte and ambushed a maquis truck.

They killed Paul Verniers, Louis Bages and Andre Laffont. Then they continued to walk, reached the Planquet farm and killed Helmut Thomas and Fernand Predal.

Col de la Flotte


AUGUST 6th 1944


Auguste EscrivaOn August 6th,1944, a division of 15 FTP of the Maquis Jean Robert is sent on a mission to join the Cathala Camp at Gaja La Selve. It suddenly came up against a German division in position on the road 120 at the Col de la Babourade

During the clash the Germans killed Auguste Escriva. He was born on June 1st, 1927 at Campagne sur Aude. He was only 17 years old.

Auguste Escriva's memorial