Jean-Jacques Rousseau Museum
a citizen of Geneva, lived from 1712 to 1788. His many controversial
books earned him popularity among many, but also anger from government
and religious authorities. As a result he was sometimes 'on the run.'
One of the places he ran to was Môtiers a little village
in the Travers Valley in present day Switzerland
where he lived for about three years. He would have lived longer in
this small, quiet, idyllic village if he had not been, more or less,
chased out of town.
From Môtiers he traveled down the Travers Valley to the area of the bigger town of Neuchâtel. Jean-Jacques had friends in the area, one of whom lived on the street Coq d'Inde downtown. In Neuchâtel he left some of his original manuscripts. Jean-Jacques continued on and stayed briefly on an island called Isle St. Pierre in the middle of a lake. His stay on Isle St. Pierre was brief. The island was in the jurisdiction of the city of Bern. The city authorities did not want such a controversial person in their territory, so ordered him to leave.
The very small Rousseau
Museum houses some of Rousseau's hand-written manuscripts,
a bust of the philosopher, copies of engravings, timeline, and other
details of Rousseau's life. The museum is located in the
Neuchâtel's Public and University Library (Bibliothèque
publique et universitaire).
Finding the museum can be a little difficult, so I will give you fairly
Go to the main post office in downtown Neuchâtel. If you are standing with your back to the tower of the post office, walk two blocks down the street in front of you. The library is on your left.
Go up the wide stairs of the library, open the big wooden door, and walk right in. The library building is open to the public, so you don't need to feel you are intruding.
As you enter through the wooden door you will see a grand staircase directly in front of you. Go up the staircase, and make a left. You will see a long hallway in front of you.