Wednesday, March 3, 2021

From Bayonne to Studio City: Jules Violé

Recently, we met newspaper editor and civil engineer Félix Violé, whose move to Los Angeles was inspired by the same newspaper he wound up editing.

Félix's brother Jules, also inspired by that fateful newspaper, joined his brother in 1888, less than a year after Félix's arrival. He was 24.

Jules was a pharmacist, and cofounded Violé & Clipfel at 100 Aliso Street, right in the heart of Frenchtown. He also partnered with German immigrant John Lopizich. The 1894 city directory lists the Violé & Lopizich pharmacy at 503 N. Main Street (with Jules living more or less onsite at 503 1/2). Fittingly, 503 N. Main Street would become the headquarters for another French pharmacist, Lucien Brunswig, in 1907. The building currently houses La Plaza de Cultura y Artes

By 1897, the building had been purchased by F.W. Braun and Co. The Violé & Lopizich pharmacy had already moved down the street to 427 N. Main (now a parking lot for the Plaza) the previous year. The pharmacy even had its own phone number (not a given in 1897): Main 875. Voter records indicate that Jules was living on the premises.

Jules married Angele DeGroote, a Walloon (French-speaking Belgian), in 1892. They had two daughters, Andree and Yvette, and a son, Pierre. Census records indicate Angele's brother Harry was living with them in 1900. 

By 1915, the Violé & Lopizich pharmacy had a second location further down Main Street. If it were still standing, it would be in City Hall's shadow at 242 N. Main. The city directory for that year lists elder daughter Andree as a pharmacist at this location. 

Pierre Violé became a doctor, and practiced medicine in Los Angeles for many years.

The 1930 census shows Jules and Angele living at 11901 Iredell Street with younger daughter Yvette, by then 27. I looked up the address. Records indicate the property dates to 1918, with a house built in 1926. Unfortunately you can't see it on Google Maps due to a privacy gate and a deep lot with abundant mature trees, but I for one am tickled to know the house still exists (and is in Studio City!). (10/21/21: Google Maps now has the house tagged as "Adobe House" and states it is a historic landmark. However, there seem to be no further photos.)

Jules Violé passed away in North Hollywood in 1948, and is buried at Calvary Cemetery.

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