History

History of the Association

Formation

This Association was formed in 1977 by descendants of Francois Violet, who settled in the St. John River valley near what is now Van Buren, Maine, in 1789. Rita Violette Lippe (#1) had done considerable genealogical research, and a group thought it would be fun to have “family reunion”. This event was held in Methuen, Massachusetts, and was so well attended that those there decided to have another reunion the following year, in Augusta, Maine. From there, Reunions have been held every three years, with the next one coming up in 2014.

History of

The Violette Family Association
 

July 16, 1978

Rita Violette Lippe, after doing years of research on the Violette family, decided to hold a family reunion. She planned the Reunion to be held in the parish hall of the Catholic Church in Methuen MA, and originally planned for about 50 to attend. Well, 375 showed up and the Violette Family Association (VFA) was formed that very day.

August 1978 

The first VFA newsletter was published and was mailed to about 46 families

August 1979 

The second Violette Reunion was held in Augusta ME, 489 attended the banquet.

August 1981

Third Reunion was held in Van Buren ME, the cradle of the Violette family. There were approximately 850 in attendance including two families of Violettes from France. The highlight of the reunion was the dedication of the large stone memorial to “Francois Violet”. It is located in the “Violette Brook Park’ on Main St, Van Buren ME. Cost was $1177. Membership stands at 1053.

September 1982

47 Violettes undertook a sentimental voyage of discovery back to the Old Country of France. They were accompanied by the two people most responsible for discovering the origins of the Violette family – Rita Violette Lippe and Maurice Violette.

1984

Rita Violette Lippe published her long-awaited book on the history and genealogy of the Violette family. Rita was awarded the title of “Genealogist Emeritus” by the Federation des Societes d’Histoire de Quebec.

August 1984

Fourth Violette Reunion held at Windsor CT. 600 were in attendance. Membership now at 1380.

August 1987

Fifth Reunion held in Portland ME

January 1990

Violette Family mailing list now computerized thanks to MBR# 621, David Violette of Lewiston ME. It is a tremendous help in keeping the membership lists and preparing mailing labels.

1990

Maurice Violette of Augusta ME published a book entitled “The Violette Family-A History”

August 1990

Sixth Violette Family Reunion held in Grand Falls.  Current active membership 1357

August 1993

Seventh Reunion held in Lewiston, ME.

July 1996

Eighth Reunion held in Gorham, NH

July 1999

Ninth Reunion held in Westford, MA

Jun 18, 2000

We mourn the loss of Elmer Violette, one of our more illustrious and accomplished members. Elmer was the chairman of the Van Buren ME Reunion. He held many elected and appointed positions, including Van Buren Municipal Court judge, Maine State Representative, Maine State Senator, Maine Superior Court judge, and Maine Supreme Court Justice.

August 2002

Tenth Reunion held in Edmundston NB. There were 250 in attendance.

July 2005

Eleventh Reunion held at the Towne & Country Hotel in Gorham NH. 105 were in attendance. The lowest turnout to date.

October 2005

Dedication of the Corriveau grist mill and wool carding machines at the Acadian Village in Van Buren ME. This is one of the oldest machines of its kind in the upper St. John River Valley. It has been installed in the Violette Industrial Building. This is an especially fitting memorial to the Violette family as our progenitor Francois Violet constructed one of the first grist mills in the area in 1791. This dedication was made possible by a very generous grant from Alderic (Dick) VFA#100 and Alice VFA#101 Violette of Warner NH. Alderic is the retired Chairman of the Board and CEO of the Merrimack County Telephone Company (MCT) in Contoocook NH. He is currently the Chairman of the New Hampshire Telephone Museum located at Warner NH.

August 2008

The 12th Violette Family Reunion was held at the Howard Johnson Inn & Conference Center at Windsor Locks CT. This was the celebration of our 30th anniversary of the founding the Violette Family Association by Rita Violette Lippe in 1978. There were about 200 in attendance.
To date there have been 61 newsletters published in 30 years and we now mail or e-mail to approximately 1200 families.
Family information and copies of past newsletters are available at the family website at www.VioletteFamily.org