Person:Willie Benoit (1)

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Willie Benoit
m. Abt 1875
  1. Eustlian Benoit1879 - 1960
  2. Julian Benoit1879 - 1959
  3. Roman "Romey" Benoit1879 - 1975
  4. Murphy Benoit1882 - 1957
  5. Rayme Morgan Benoit1888 - 1963
  6. Preston D Benoit1892 - 1962
  7. Willie Benoit1894 - 1985
m. 30 Apr 1923
  1. Berta Lou Marie Benoit1926 - 2013
  2. Joseph Benoit1927 - 1927
  3. Twin Baby Boy #2 Benoit1927 - 1927

Willie "Bill" Benoit was born on 27 Jul 1894, to Michel Maran Benoit and Michel's second wife, Marie Domatile Duhon. Bill married Lucy Courrege in 1923 and they raised one daughter. During his lifetime, he was a business leader, war veteran, city alderman, active member of the American Legion, and owner of Benoit's Variety Store in Vinton, Louisiana. He died in 1985, after a courageous battle with cancer. He is remembered as a kind and soft-spoken man, with a great sense of humor.

Contents


Facts and Events

Name[1][2] Willie Benoit
Gender Male
Birth[1][2] 27 Jul 1894 Vinton, Calcasieu, Louisiana
Residence[1] 13 Jun 1900 Calcasieu, Louisiana, United States
Military[2] 5 Jun 1917 WWI - served in France
Residence[1] 17 Jan 1920 Vinton, Calcasieu, Louisiana, United States
Marriage 30 Apr 1923 Vinton, Calcasieu, Louisiana, United Statesto Lucy Pauline Courrege
Residence[4] 3 April 1930 Vinton, Calcasieu, Louisiana, United States
Death? 16 Mar 1985 Vinton, Calcasieu, Louisiana


Pedigree

Pedigree of Willie Benoit (1894-1985)
Willie Benoit (1894-1985) Michel Miran Benoit (1833-1909) Michel Benoit (1809- ) Francois Xavier Benoit (1779-1823)
Madeline Marguerite Trahan (1791- )
Elise Granger (1814- ) [[Person:|unknown]]
[[Person:|unknown]]
Marie Domatile Duhon (1863-1896) Jean Serazin Duhon (1820- ) Cyprien Duhon (1803-1878)
Julie Granger (1804-1885)
Marie-Celanie Farque (1822- ) Joseph Pierre Farque (Abt 1766-1792)
Victorie Broussard (1787-1850)


Birth and Parentage

Willie "Bill" Benoit was born on 27 Jul 1894, and was the youngest of seven known sons of Michel Maran Benoit and Michel's second wife, Marie Domatile Duhon. His father Michel passed away in 1909, when Bill was 15 years of age. Bill moved into his older brother Julian's home, as did their younger sisters from Michel's third marriage to Geneva Montie.

In 1922, Willie Benoit was listed in the succession of Clairville Granger, as descendants of Elise Granger, sister of Clairville Granger and wife of Michel Benoit. Successions were often printed in the Lake Charles newspaper as the original documents would have been destroyed when the courthouse was destroyed by fire on April 23, 1910.

1900 Census

According to Bill's notes, his mother Domathile died on 26 Mar 1896. After her death, Michel married for a third time, to Genevieve "Jennie" Montie. Bill was listed as being three years old in the 1900 census, however, if he was born in 1894, he should have been listed as being older.

1900 Census - Household of Michel Benoit [1]

Ward 5, Lower Sabine, Calcasieu Parish, Louisiana, USA
13 Jun 1900

  • Benoit, Michel Head WM Apr 18 67 M4 Daily laborer (parents born in LA)
  • Jennie Wife WF Jun 1879 20, M4 Mother of 2 children, Read-no, Write-no, (parents born in LA)
  • Justilian son WM Apr 1879 21 Daily laborer
  • Ustilian son WM Apr 1879 21 Daily laborer
  • Murphy son WM Jan 1883 17
  • Renie son WM Mar 1885 15
  • Roman son WM Feb 1886 12
  • Preston son WM May 1892 8
  • Willie son WM Jun 1896 3
  • Ida daughter WM Nov 1899 1
1900 Census - Household of Michel Benoit [1]
Enlarge
1900 Census - Household of Michel Benoit [1]

World War I

Bill's draft registration card was signed on 5 June 1917. He trained in New Orleans at Tulane University. Because he spoke French, he was sent to France, where he served in the 80th Division at a camp for German POWs.

WWI Draft Registration Card

Willie Benoit's WWI Registration Card

Registration Location: Calcasieu County, Louisiana; Roll: 1684666; Draft Board: 0.

  • Board: 0., 15 Jun 1917
  • Birth date: 27 Jul 1894
  • Residence: Vinton, Calcasieu Parish, Louisiana, USA
  • Employed: Clerk, Intercoastal Mercantile Co.
  • Height: Medium
  • Build: Medium
  • Eyes: Grey
  • Hair:Brown
  • Have you a father, mother, wife, child under 12, or a sister or brother under 12, solely dependent on your for support (specify which)? Child, Sister, 12 years old
Willie Benoit's WWI Registration Card [2]
Enlarge
Willie Benoit's WWI Registration Card [2]

WWI News Clippings That Mention Willie Benoit

Vinton WWI Veterans Honored in 1975

1920s

1920 Census

The 1920 Census lists Bill, age 25, and his younger sisters as part of brother Julian's household. Bill's occupation was listed as a salesman in a feed store.

1920 Census - Household of Julian Benoit [1]

Vinton, Calcasieu, Louisiana, USA
17 Jan 1920

1920 Census - Household of Julian Benoit [3]
Enlarge
1920 Census - Household of Julian Benoit [3]

Willie Benoit's News Stand

Willie Benoit opened Willie Benoit News Stand in the early 1920s.

Marriage to Lucy Pauline Courrege

When soldiers were leaving for the war, they would throw pieces of paper with their names to girls waving to the trucks of soldiers. Bill starting writing to a girl from New Iberia. After the war, he would visit her in New Iberia. He was friends with Gus Courrege, who was from New Iberia but lived in Vinton, so the two men would ride the train together, and Bill would stay at the home of Jean and Marie Courrege in New Iberia, parents of Lucy Pauline Courrege. At the time, Lucy was living with Gus's family and working in Vinton at a store on Main Street. She would ride the train with Gus and Bill to New Iberia. Lucy would later tell her daughter that, "after a while, Bill would still go to Louisiana, but he stopped visiting the other girl."

Bill and Lucy were married on 30 April 1923. They had one daughter, Berta Lou Marie Benoit, on 1 April 1926. They had twin sons on 31 May 1927. One twin was stillborn and the other died on 3 June 1927.

1930s and 1940s

1930 Census

Willie is listed as the owner of a fruit and candy business in the 1930 census. His daughter would remember big stalks of bananas hanging in the store window. Teachers in the Vinton school would often board in the Benoit home. In 1930, Blanch Segura was boarding at their home. She later married a Seguera and moved away from Vinton.

1930 Census - Household of Willie Benoit [4]

Ward 5, Lower Sabine, Calcasieu Parish, Louisiana, USA
13 Jun 1900

  • Willie Head WM 35 Retail merchant-Fruit and candy, Employer
  • Lucy wife WF 30
  • Berta Lou daughter WF 4
  • Blanche Segura WF 24 Boarder, teacher in public schools
1930 Census - Household of Willie Benoit [4]
Enlarge
1930 Census - Household of Willie Benoit [4]

In 1930, Willie's brother Julian was living next door on Eddy Street in Vinton. Julian used the blueprints from Willie's house to build his own home.

1930s Newspaper Clippings


Willie Benoit - City Councilman, Community Leader

Bill served his community as a city councilman.

American Legion

Willie was an active member of the American Legion. In 1934, he was listed in the newspaper as being the adjutant of the Vinton post. He also served on the selective service board during World War II.

1950s

Retirement

Bill and wife Lucy owned "Benoit's Variety" Store. They retired and closed the store in 1969, after 22 years in business.

Death and Burial

Bill passed away on 16 Mar 1985, after a long battle with cancer. He is buried in Big Woods Cemetery in Edgerly.

Family Stories

Salt in the Sugar Bowl

Willie Benoit had a great sense of humor and liked to play practical jokes. Once when his wife Lucy was entertaining friends with coffee, he put salt in the sugar bowl before the ladies arrived. Then he waited around the corner to listen to their reactions when they tasted their coffee.

Prohibition

It was a well known family fact that one of Lucy's brothers, who lived in New Iberia, made and sold liquor during and after the prohibition years. But it was not known to Willie's family that Willie sold the liquor to his customers in his store in Vinton. That information was told to Willie's granddaughter by one of the brother's nephews at a family gathering in 2005. Willie was a businessman, and selling moonshine was good business.

References
  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 United States. Census Office. 12th census, 1900. Louisiana, 1900 federal census : soundex and population schedules. (Washington, District of Columbia: The National Archives, 19--?), Roll T623_561; Page: 5B; Enumeration District: 18, 13 Jun 1900.
    1900 Census
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 United States. Selective Service System. Louisiana, World War I Selective Service System draft registration cards, 1917-1918. (Washington, District of Columbia: The National Archives, 1987-1988), Registration Location: Calcasieu County, Louisiana; Roll: 1684666; Draft Board: 0., 15 Jun 1917, Primary quality.
    WWI Draft Registration Card
  3. United States. Bureau of the Census. 14th census, 1920. Louisiana, 1920 federal census : soundex and population schedules. (Washington [District of Columbia]: The National Archives, 193-?), Roll: T625_606; Page: 10A; Enumeration District: 54; Image: 512., 17 Jan 1920.
    1920 Census
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 United States. Bureau of the Census. 15th census, 1930. Louisiana, 1930 federal census: soundex and populations schedules ; NARA microfilm publications T626 and M2054. (Washington, District of Columbia: Bureau of the Census Micro-Film Laboratory, 199-?), Roll: 789; Page: 2A; Enumeration District: 26; Image: 224.0., 3 Apr 1930.
    1930 Census
  5.   Social Security Administration. Social Security Death Index, Issue State: Louisiana;Issue Date: Before 1951.

    Name: Willie Benoit
    Last Residence: 70668 Vinton, Calcasieu, Louisiana, United States of America
    Born: 27 Jul 1894
    Died: Mar 1985

  6.   Vinton, Calcasieu, Louisiana, United States. Vinton News. (Vinton, Louisiana).
    WWI Veterans Honord, 1975
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 7.4 Lake Charles, Louisiana. American Press. (Lake Charles, Louisiana).
    BBQ, 1935 Vinton Home Boys Honored, 1917 Course at Tulane, 1918 Newstand Ad, 1922 Newstand Ad, 1923 Elections, 1937 Thanks Voters, 1937 Elections, 1941 Re-elected, 1941 Vinton Proceedings, 1941 Vinton Proceedings, 1942 Elections, 1944 Succession Clairville Granger, 1922 American Legion, 1934 American Legion, 1938 Memorial Day, 1938 Selective Service, 1946 1949 Town Cleanup, 1938 Class One Men, 1918 Obituary