Until the Second World War, a market was held every Monday in the main square of the village, called " La Place ". Already existing under the Old Regime, it was officially authorized in 1802 . Campagnac was then a local economic center , on " the path to Millau ", an important communication route linking Saint-Geniez and the mountains to Languedoc:
“ Campagnac, a small town located at the eastern end of the department of Aveyron, has a population of 1500 to 1600 inhabitants . It is the seat of a Court of Peace. Its territory is very fertile in grain and hay. There is extensive trade there. There is a very considerable factory of cadis *. Fabrics are made there. A large amount of cotton is spun there. The inhabitants of its surroundings and in particular those of the western part of Lozère go there daily to buy food, wool, cotton and sell the goods they have crafted there. Every week, carriers from the Hérault come to barter the produce of their soil for local foodstuffs ”. (1802)
The years 1800-1825 correspond to the peak of the market . It then loses its importance, following the decline of the textile activity. Around 1855, it is reported that:
“ As far as industry is concerned, our locality only covers a period of 25 years, from 1800 to 1825, more or less. This is its peak of luster. Then, the trade of wools, cadis, cottons occupied a great number of arms and Campagnac was, for the trade, the factory of all the canton , as it was since the office of bank for the uneasy owners of the others. municipalities. The markets, which were fixed for every Monday of each week, were very frequented, at that time, by foreigners who had come from various points and who left a good number of capital in the locality. As machines have done away with arms and better-made fabrics have supplanted our cadis, the markets, no longer having sufficient food, have lost their importance and are now followed only during the months of May and June. This is the time when the owners get rid of the superfluous of their animal menus ”. There was also a special market for the hire of mowers and harvesters by the day (the “ loue ”). Established in 1853, it took place every day, from June 15 to September 15, and allowed owners to recruit the labor they needed for summer work .
Stone grain measures once existed in most market places. They cease to be used in the 19th century and most are destroyed. Few are the complete series still in place .
The measures of Campagnac date at least from the official establishment of the market, in 1802. They are placed in order of size and dug with a cylindrical cavity, the bottom of which is inclined in order to allow the flow of the grains by a square pantry located at the low point. The volume of each cavity corresponds to a reference quantity: emine (the smallest), quart , cup and bushel (the largest), old capacity measurements for the grains. These are poured from above in the chosen measure whose drainage hole has previously been plugged. One uses for this operation a square of wood which one flattens on the hole. Once the measure is filled, the square is removed and the grains fall into the bag placed below.
In order to keep the grains sheltered from bad weather during the transfer operations, the measures were protected by a hall , called " La Halle au Blé ". Created in 1802, it stood at the current locationof the Mission Cross . Small square building of 4 m side, whose vault rested on 4 columns. The hall was demolished in 1826 to erect the cross and the measures were moved to the retaining wall of the square.
* The cadis : woolen fabric, similar to serge, coarse but solid, which was used to make popular clothes. Made mainly in the south of France, it remains known for its use in the Pyrenees where it was the main material for shepherds' capes, but it was also used elsewhere, notably by Occitan and Provençal shepherds. (Wikipedia)
-Texts of the Association " Living in Campagnac and its Hamlets "-
Comments are approved before publication.