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The Mougettes on their way

Over the seasons, the residents of Anniviers were required to live according to the rhythm of the remuages (movements) constantly. They owned meadows, vineyards and gardens in the valley of the Rhone; meadows, fields and forest land close to their villages and pasture land in the mayens (small houses associated with mid-mountain pastures). Everyone moved : the parish priest, the authorities, villagers and the schools.

Map of St-Jean

“It is worth stopping to look at a remuage convoy. On the wagon, the people strove to somehow install children, the grandfather and grandmother, cats, a rooster, chickens, goats and a little pig, wood, straw, food, a few wooden utensils, and their Sunday clothes in order to be welldressed in Sierre. Young people followed the cart with the herd. “ (« Le remuage. Moeurs et coutumes d’Anniviers ». Annales valaisannes, Monnier)

The “Mougettes” (field mice), a nickname given to the people of Saint-Jean, moved at the same time as the residents of other villages until the middle of the 20th century.

The mule track created opportunities for meetings between young people and created welcome alliances.

The history of the valley’s communication channels is inseparable from that of its inhabitants who are, as the likely etymology of Anniviers suggests, on the roads all year.

According to Bernard Crettaz, “the development of the road corresponds to the loss of the community in favour of individualization.” The development of access roads, with the arrival of the carriage road, changed the behaviour of the inhabitants of the valley. The people of Anniviers finally settled down.