|On April 22 1915 Germans used for the first time posionous gas in Steenstraete, a hamlet of Ypres. The chloric gas attack, which sturck especially French troops, took place in the sector of the Regiment Grenadiers until 1914 the “Beremutsen translated: bearskin hats”). Together with the French and Canadians, the Grenadiers succeeded to close the breach in the frontier. The honourable mention “Steenstraete” will be written on the flag of the regiment and Leopoldsburg will get a “Steenstraetelaan”.|
|Tabora, a city in the Tanzania. During WW I Tabora was part of German East-Africa (Tanganjika). During the campaign in East-Africa the allied forces (British, French and Belgians) had one’s hands full with with the German General Paul Emil von Lettow-Vorbeck. As part of a pincer movement the Belgian General Charles Tombeur, commander of the Forces Publiques, managed to conquer the city Tabora after being engaged in violent combat (September 1916). This battle is also a part of the movie “The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles”.|
|In 1888, 10 years after the first train, the first steam-tram drove from Bourg-Léopold to Bree. 2 years later there was also an connection with Maaseik.|
The first tramline was put next to the ‘iron road’. This made Leopoldsburg an important junction on the tramline Beringen-Maaseik and on the railway Diest-Mol.
|Hubert Anselme Vander Elst was the first mayor of Bourg-Léopold (18/12/1850 until 24/11/1871).|
He was born in Meerhout on January 27, 1809 and died in Leopoldsburg on November 24, 1871.
His main merits were, besides the expansion of the village, also the organisation of education, the construction of metalled roads and the improvement of public health.
|Antoon van Dyck was born in Antwerp on March 22 1599 and deceased in London on December 9 1641. Van Dyck was a painter and a etcher. With Rubens and Jordaens he made part of the painting school of Antwerp in the 17th century.|
|Victor Lemmens, born in Koersel on September 18, 1900, died in Brussels on October 8, 1942 as a victim of the nazi-regime. An interesting newspaper article can be found HERE.|
|Victor Swerts, born in Anseremme on September 9, 1886, died in the prison of Sint-Gillis (Brussels) on March 18, 1941 as a victim of the nazi-regime.|
|Between 1922 and 1942 Leopoldsburg had 2 cycle race-tracks. The neighbourhood of the cycle race-tracks were completely tuned to provide cyclists and public a lot of comfort.|