In 1964, the first French woman to be honored by the Yad Vashem commission with the title “Righteous among the Nations” was a math teacher at a girls’ school in a remote town in France’s mountainous Auvergne region.
Alice Ferrières of Murat was a Protestant whose family was affected by 1685’s revocation of the Edict of Nantes, which abolished Protestants’ civil rights and sent them fleeing France.
In 1941, when Nazi occupiers seized French Jewish businesses, Ferrières began helping Jews in any way she could, eventually rescuing around 50 adults and children, despite having no special power, financial resources, or influence. Ferrières kept full records of her correspondence and other documents from this era, which have only now been published as “Dear Miss: Alice Ferrières and the children of Murat, 1941-1944” by Les éditions Calmann-Lévy.
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