Couple Discovers Cache of French Resistance Guns and Ammo

A couple living in Burgundy found a hidden cache of weapons that local historians claim belonged to the French Resistance. The cache included three Sten submachine guns, over a dozen grenades and more. (Photo: L’Yonne Republicaine)

A Burgundy couple discovered a hidden cache of World War II-era arms that likely belonged to the French Resistance. The cache included pistols and submachine guns as well as grenades and plenty of mags and ammo.

The couple described the cache which included three Sten guns, three pistols, over a dozen grenades and well over a thousand rounds of ammunition. Two of the Sten guns have engravings. One bears the name “Pepette” and the other “Alice.”

The couple donated the cache to a local museum. The museum will put them on display next year in honor of the Maquis who lived there.

The identities of the couple and the original cache’s owner are being kept anonymous. The museum is confirming that these are Maquis weapons.

Aurore Callewaert, the museum curator, substantiated the couple’s claim by tracing the weapons to a known member of the Resistance.

The museum will “demilitarize” or demill the guns before putting them on display next spring. They are being hosted by the Museum of the Resistance in Morvan.

The first Morvan Maquis volunteers, from left to right: Lucien “Popaul” Charlot, Armand “Theo” Simonnot, Andre “Max” Roguier and Rene “Francois” Mace. (Photo: Aurore Callewaert/Museum of the Resistance in Morvan)

The Resistance museum chronicles the actions of Maquis men and women who fought against the Nazi occupational forces and collaborationist Vichy government. It’s also a memorial to those who fought and died in the Resistance.

Additionally the museum has maps of the region for people to visit the local historical sights including the homes of the Maquis fighters as well as locations of skirmishes, battles, and massacres in the Morvan region.

The underground movement in Morvan started in 1943 with only a handful of volunteers. By the end of the war the local Maquis forces grew to around 600 Resistance fighters.

See Also: British Father and Son Find Dozens of Guns Fishing with Magnets

Nazi occupational forces relied on a network of French informants to root out members of the French Resistance. Toward the end of the war as informants grew scarce the Nazis turned to mass punishments.

In Morvan and across France the Nazis routinely massacred townsfolk unrelated to the Resistance in order to weaken the resolve of its members.

{ 38 comments… add one }
  • JM Wapple October 30, 2017, 4:42 pm

    Something that the French ultra-left, i.e. Communists, are proud of, is that many, many people in the Resistance *were * *communists*. Some French folks were glad to not be under communist rule, if they somehow had the choice. The Marshall Plan was one of the greatest anti communist moves the USA ever made, it stole the fuel from all those commies just waiting to ravage Europe like they did the Eastern Bloc. In any case, I too mourn the demilling of these fine pieces. To have a decent self-loader in France, the gouvernement has to know when you fart.

  • Peter Brown October 28, 2017, 1:57 am

    A premium price for those weapons with inserted or affixed white flags.

    • Russ H. October 29, 2017, 3:25 pm

      The French Resistance were NOT quitters or surrender monkeys – they fought hard under the most difficult situations and were extremely brave. Getting caught meant being executed. The French government surrendered to the Nazis – the French Resistance did not .

  • fritz bousigschouer October 27, 2017, 9:47 pm

    that must have been the french version of the german gutmenschen, liberal messups, that dont keep the arms and ammo, especial in the current like civil war conditions in many places in france.
    why have french tanks rear mirrors? that they can drive fast and easy backwards, to get away from the actual battle.

  • Mahatma Muhjesbude October 27, 2017, 9:19 pm

    I’ve fired a lot of these Stens, all the versions, in fact, but never saw one like the top one in the picture. With the bottom magwell position instead of the standard side angle so you could lay flatter with it on the ground . I don’t think it technically existed.? Wonder if the French underground were making their own version of clones and these, like other ‘underground’ fighters did in other countries and these, in fact, were not British made? That would make them r rare collectibles. I guess it’s not hard to rotate the magwell as it’s all a one piece sleeve, but then the bolt would have to be changed or modified? And the ejector that’s welded to the inside of the tube moved. Also the trigger guard looks bigger than the other two. And it would seem like way too much trouble and for what better tactical purpose?
    Or…the British made a limited production down mag position version that never ‘made it’ in actual combat so it somehow wound up with the French? That would then be a super duper collectible relic and it should then be a crime to demill it!
    ..

    • Chris October 30, 2017, 9:19 am

      Amen. I was just thinking it’s a crime to demill any of them. Especially as France is getting overrun. These might need cleaned, oiled, and put into service…

    • Charlie October 30, 2017, 2:34 pm

      Most Sten Marks had a magwell storage position. By pressing a catch you could rotate the magwell 90 degrees. Cannot go off if the mag will not feed.

  • Boz October 27, 2017, 5:26 pm

    Lucky for them that they are not in England (Britain). They would go to jail just for finding them.

  • Glen Mcclester October 27, 2017, 4:16 pm

    RGE I think you said it all brother, we were raised Americans. Right left or in the middle who cares? as long as it is in the best interest of us all that should be what matters. The reason things are like they are, its easier to control us when we’re divided. Anyway the guns are a link to a past and should be treated as such. As for me can’t really say much about about france. I’m glad to be an Amercian!
    Axes52

    • qhorse13 October 29, 2017, 3:02 pm

      a link to the past no doubt, and then the museum ruins the by “demilling” them. they will(have) taken the true history away from the firearms by doing that. i have a friend that had a WWII jeep that had been straffed by an ME109. he restored the jeep and filled in all the bullet holes. and to me that ruined it. i would have restored it just as it was with the holes in it. that was a historical piece. just as these firearms, and doing anything to them just takes away the history from them.

  • craig ramsey October 27, 2017, 12:16 pm

    Like new condition. Never fired, dropped only once.

    • big bob October 27, 2017, 1:50 pm

      Yeah-Yeah, very funny. You do injustice to all the resistance fighters that fought and died defending France against the Nazi’s.

      • Richard October 29, 2017, 10:25 am

        To honor the Resistance the weapons are being “demilitarized’ !!!!??? Like the British who took back and destroyed all the guns used in defense against the Germans! Same mentality.

    • DaveP326 October 27, 2017, 8:28 pm

      No. That was the ad for war surplus Italian rifles.

  • Silverbullet October 27, 2017, 12:04 pm

    The way the world is now, no way id turn anything in not even the grenades . We’ve got lib loving Muslims just ready to take over and destroy everything we stand for. Congress trying there best to help in the takeover. Goon squads are being conditioned as we try to stay free. Hitler type NAZI take over , you watch the amendments are all under fire. When one goes they all follow quickly , we need control the people not congress who are bought daily with millions and still cry for raises . Any senator who’s net income is more then a million dollars shouldn’t be paid at all. How can they come out multimillionaires in only a few years on the job as congressman ??? Most of us aren’t stupid we know they’re thieves of course legal thieves .
    If I had ever had any or found any war era guns and armament that were usable bet your butt I’d keep them . These people who turned them in May live to regret it. One thinking goon may think there’s more and zip there dead. I hope and pray people will learn to live and let live , but they don’t the why I just don’t understand. If we all worked together there wouldn’t ever be poor or rich , bum or leader just all looking out to help each other. All working and living in peace. But utopia will never be. YUPP keep your guns Frenchy we can’t fight all your battles.

  • Patrick October 27, 2017, 11:24 am

    These are the true French heroes…. Hope they survived to enjoy de Gaulle return to Paris

  • Mike October 27, 2017, 10:30 am

    A lot of you have a very superficial view of history. The French WW I generals commanding in WW II had too much faith in the Maginot Line and didn’t know anything about modern tactics, forcing their troops to surrender early. And the Vichy government made sure the citizens were complacent. But the Maquis were brave fighters and deserve far more credit than they are being given here.

    The US and many of our leaders of industry were pro-nazi at the time and might have done the same.

    We would not have won the Revolutionary war without the help of the French.

  • Jerry S. October 27, 2017, 10:19 am

    No way in hell would I tell anyone I had found something like this…..only a sheeple, brain-dead liberal would be of such a mind, but then that describes half of France now.

    • Chris October 30, 2017, 9:21 am

      Exactly. So sad.

  • ILL WILL October 27, 2017, 10:11 am

    Ahhh immaturity reigns supreme in the ol comments as usual. “Stupid French, they couldn’t fight no Nazis, I woulda beat those Nazi turds into a pulp!”

    It’s called being sold out…The French govt and elites welcomed the Nazis with open arms like 99% of the fools throughout history. This exact thing has been happening in US for decades. And I’m willing to bet none of you have noticed or are doing anything about it. The reason the French didn’t fight is because most saw zero chance of making an impact and stayed with their families. It takes something special to fight against the greatest war machine ever assembled and only a select few joined the resistance. Not a French lover, or Nazi sympathizer, but you shouldn’t knock on an entire country and group of people without looking at the US in the mirror…Our society is 100 times worse than the French in WW2. Think we stand a chance?

    Definitely would’ve kept those Stens…

    • Carl Smith October 28, 2017, 12:30 am

      America is facing an re-enactment of history that has been played many times before with a populace that has already completed phase 1 of the destruction of the Republic. INDOCTRINATE the youth to not believe anything about our Founders beliefs in morality , religion and the rule of law. I believe this is pretty apparent in todays demonstrations. So the social justice farce is now believed by a majority of not only our youth but academia and a compliant media. SUMMATION; The 1st Amendment has been corrupted to the point of being totally ignored. The next step has been in the works for most of my 80 years and that is the assault on the 2nd Amendment. Shall Not be Infringed has been twisted to mean “unless the Government thinks otherwise”. Step one is Registration which insures “The Government” knows where to go to Confiscate the Peoples last defense against an oppressive Government. SUMMATION; The 2nd Amendment has also been Ignored or misinterpreted to the point even avid gun owners are bowing to “A little regulation here and there is Okay” How long before the Government just decides to just stop all the gun deaths and confiscate all guns? Ignoring the 98,000 Hospital malpractice deaths and the 35,000 annual auto deaths is ignored by the Progressives because they know they can’t stop doctors “Practicing” medicine and outlawing Cars??? Lost your mind? America has had some serious problems in the past and we, unlike other nations, have overcome the wrongs and for over 240 years have done something no other nation in the world has done, Peacefully turning over the power of Government to the opposition by Elections. This Administration is different in that roughly 1/2 of the Elected official and 1/4 the population have not accepted this after almost 9 months into his term, and some are screaming Impeachment ( for what?) and the media( supposed Journalist and the used to be funny late shows) are full tilt to demean and degrade the POTUS in spite of the most robust Stock Market in 30 years and every single economic indicator is saying the opposite of what is being fed the general public.
      I have had the privilege of traveling and working in over 20 countries in Europe, Asia and S. America and I could fill a couple volumes of the horrors and living conditions I have witnessed and don’t even get me started on the complete disregard for human life I have seen. SUMMATION; America has it’s problems but is hands down better than anything I have seen in my travels, and is worth listening to our Founders admonition that Freedom is Never Free and the tree of Liberty will have to be refreshed from time to time if this experiment is to last.

      • Kit November 2, 2017, 2:52 pm

        Amen, and excellent comment. I would like to add, “Those who do not remember the past are condemned to repeat it”. Meaning: our supposed “educators” are not teaching factual history, but rather some version (fantasy) that is politically correct bullcrap and nothing more than indoctrination to make America out to be evil and a terrible country. I would challenge these propagandists to move to a country they think is better, and that will tolerate their hatred of the country in which they live. I will even buy them a one way airplane ticket (coach only), but they cannot return to the United States.

  • RGE October 27, 2017, 10:02 am

    Demilling them shouldn’t be an option. First off those guns are property of Her Majesty. Last I recall Stens were made in England. These are valuable specimens that should be preserved. There are plenty of demilled Stens that can be displayed and these can be kept locked up. The French resistance were much more hardy than just being surrender monkeys. Though I will agree that the French hate Americans though every time they get invaded they beg us for our help and then when they have a huge war debt, demand that we forgive the debt!

    Now on a more serious note. They brought on a lot of the fury on their own. Aside from the Italians, they have a volatile politik and often demand more than they deserve. They cradle socialism and terrorists but hate the cost of it (like who doesn’t?). And nowadays over here we keep getting politicians that want a socialist style government, cradle all sorts of people that some of which hate us back, which may and likely will make us all look like the French one day which is sad. Look around you, half the country hates the other half. This is not what America’s about. I’m getting fed up with the BS about people bashing each other, the president, and haircuts for that matter. I don’t care what color you are, whether you’re gay or straight or a “some kind of it” in between along that continuum, don’t care which or what god you pray to or even if you pray to a god; couldn’t care less if you get abortions or go home and do drugs or drink. Just don’t go around hurting other people for no reason. The rest of us should be happy we have neighbors, friends and communities but a good half are never satisfied unless they can dictate to the other half. Its disgusting!

    Anyway my rant. The guns should be preserved and not demilled; my conclusion property of the British government.

    • Patrick October 27, 2017, 11:26 am

      Hear Hear!

    • wjr1984 October 27, 2017, 2:36 pm

      I imagine by “demil” in regards to this article, they’re going to have the fire control group removed or something while leaving the exterior intact. That way, someone can’t break in and steal a functioning sub machine gun. I doubt it’s going to be like our version of “demil” where it’s cut in half with a chopsaw. Wouldn’t be that impressive of a display then.

  • Philip October 27, 2017, 9:50 am

    They can start selling the collection 1 gun at a time. “New WWII guns, never fired, dropped once…” LOL

  • Philip October 27, 2017, 9:40 am

    They can start selling the collection 1 gun at a time. “New WWII guns, never fired dropped once…” LOL

  • Mike October 27, 2017, 7:53 am

    It’s amazing that in one generation since ww2 how the world forgets how the Americans liberated them from Nazi power. The French today are not anything like the French who helped US against the British. The free world always knows the Americans will come help them so they don’t put but a fraction compared to what we do in our military. We do need more articles regarding civil defense. That is why Radical Islam can have such a lasting effect as well.

  • Henri October 27, 2017, 7:23 am

    Viva let France !! Wee wee ….

  • Michael poletti October 27, 2017, 6:09 am

    I would have kept a Sten gun and a pistol and donated the rest

    • Chris October 27, 2017, 8:17 am

      I’d of kept everything but the explosives – love WW2 era firearms!
      Finders keepers.

      • Doug October 27, 2017, 10:34 am

        Who’s to say someone didn’t? Maybe there were a dozen Stens originally…at least, that’s what might have happened if I’d found them.
        “Yes sir, there were only those three in the cache…not a single sidearm or rifle either.”

      • Keith Clark October 27, 2017, 12:34 pm

        Hey, at least you could have gone fishing with the grenades……. if they didn’t instantly explode in your hands. Err, never mind. As for the guns, What Guns?

  • Beauchamp Fornortener October 27, 2017, 3:31 am

    I place a bet those weapons were never fired….the French being surrender monkees also shows a lack of resolve as most could care less the Germans were running the place.

    Their reputation…at least in many parts of the U.S…is that they smell (don’t bathe regularly), are obsessed with cheese, their creamy saucy semi-bland food, use wine both ways….to complain and drink……and generally are in love with themselves and their language – – – which when spoken sounds the speaker is “mental” or drunk.

    Note: WW 2 French tanks had three reverse gears…………..

    • Fred October 27, 2017, 9:35 am

      The correct description is “Cheese eating surrender Monkeys”

  • Dr Motown October 24, 2017, 6:43 am

    Too bad they’re being de-milled. Would’ve been fun to blast a few mags through them before donating to the museum

  • Robert Smith October 23, 2017, 10:44 pm

    This story begs for, “if only those guns could talk”. I’ll bet they would say they survived the war because their owners were too scared to use them. Perhaps understandably so, given how few Frenchmen actually took up arms in the Resistance. If you want a look at what really happened in WW II France, watch Marcel Ophuls 1969 documentary, “The Sorrow and the Pity”. Simply put, most people supported the pro-Nazi Vichy government.

    • Tyrone October 27, 2017, 12:34 pm

      Seeing as how quick you are to condemn whoever hid that cache, stuffed with useful tools for a purpose, is sad. It is quite possible the they were rounded up and shot or something similar, which could equally explain why the cache had been left untouched. If that was the case, or anything close to that, then they are unsung heroes. Only God knows for sure….

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