The most interesting account relating to Bérenger Saunière came from a Monsieur Espeut, relating to his activities of the 1920s:
"...I would like to state that the Abbé Saunière never found any treasure. You see, I was actually born in Espéraza. My family knew the Dénarnaud family. In 1925, when I was 14 years old, I used to go up regularly to Rennes-le-Château. I used to go and see Marie Dénarnaud. She was living in rather pitiable circumstances. I did my harmony lessons on the organs in the salon, which have now disappeared. In the library of the Tour Magdala, I read all the correspondence of the priest with his ecclesiastical lawyer at the time of his trial at the court of Rome. It was by collecting money for saying masses that the Abbé Saunière was able to construct his estate. He published small ads in the Catholic press throughout the world. I was able to read their texts, and I have seen thousands of replies".(Midi Libre, 13 February, 1973).
Thanks for this. It really is interesting.
So when did the treasure rumours start then?