In contrast to the "official history" of the Conseil d'État that presents it as a prestigious and neutral institution, new work ought to reflect on how the grand corps of the Conseil d'État has been implicated in the major issues and crises of French political history, especially in the twentieth century. Drawing on recent historiography, this article focuses in particular on the Conseil d'État during World War II and the Algerian War. It also analyzes the variety of everyday practices of the Conseil d'État and its role in the development of administrative law. Finally, this article examines the professional careers of the members of the grand corps that have staffed this institution. It thus seeks to chart, through the study of a single institution, a path for writing the political history of the state administration that engages with the work of legal scholars as well as political scientists.