Staouëli

Abbey & Brewery
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La Trappe de Staouëli was a monastery located in French Algeria during the  
colonialist period.

In 1841, the deputy De Corcelle was in charge of an information mission in Algeria. Its goal was to formulate proposals in order to consolidate the French conquest and ensure its future.


He called on monks to launch a solid movement of colonization.

Marshal Bugeaud held the real power in Algeria and favored a colonial policy. He was amenable to the idea of ​​associating "plowman monks" to his work.

The monks had left without really knowing where to go and found themselves, for lack of hospitality, reduced to sleeping under the stars at the foot of a large oak tree. In the trunk of the old tree, they found a comb of honey which provided them some sustenance.

The Cistercians were chosen for their qualities as farmers, their selflessness and their courage; but it was in order to live there as a Christian and for the glory of Christianity that Father François Régis accepted the primary responsibility for this new Trappe.

The contract for a concession of 1020 ha., mentioned in the Official Journal of July 11, 1843, was established and would become final after the fulfillment of draconian conditions. The concession title in full ownership would be established only if, at the end of five years of usufruct, the conditions of the contract had been followed, including the cultivation of the land, the planting of 10,000 trees, and operating and residential buildings completed in one year ...

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On July 11, 1846, La Trappe de Staouëli was established as an abbey. The monastery was then at the head of a large agricultural operation cultivating vines, citrus fruits, wheat, corn, sorghum, sweet potatoes and beets, as well as 30 ha. of geraniums.

Dom Louis de Gonzague André, elected abbot in 1900, considered that the lack of local recruitment could compromise the future. He also feared that his monastery would be threatened by the anti-religious laws of 1901. Even though Mgr Oury obtained from the president of the council that the domain of Staouëli "model farm" would escape government threats, the domain was sold in 1904.

Written sources from 1849 attest to the existence of a brewery, installed between 1845 and 1849. Another testimony appears here.

Interior view of the Trappe de Staouëli.