Individual Record 6

Name}   Williams, Viola Clide (Vi) Family History} Hancock              
  Title}   Race} White Sex} Female
Birth:   Date} Exa 12 Sep   1920 Place} Walnut Street, Coffeyville, Montgomery, Kansas
Marr.1: Date} Exa 19 Mar 1939 Place} Presbyterian Church, San Rafael, Marin, California  (Link)
Marr.:2 Date} Exa 16 Sep   1942 Place} First Methodist Church, Napa, Napa, California        (Link)
Death: Date} Exa 20 Sep   1993 Place} 1147 Hardman Avenue, Napa, California
Burial: Date} Exa   1 Oct   1993 Place} Duhig plot, Tulocay Cemetery, Napa, Napa, California
Grave Marker} Yes
Source 1}      6 = Family notes
Source 2}      8 = Family Notes
Source 3}   732 = 1930 USA cen
Source 4} 1598 = Marriage rec
Source 5} 1600 = City directory
Source 6} 1587 = 1940 USA cen
Source 7}   443 = Divorce rec
Source 8}   247 = Church rec
Source 9 1586 = 1950 USA cen
Source 10}   854 = Newspaper
Source 11}  154 = Geog history
Source 12}  289 = Cookbook
Source 13}  290 = Cookbook
Parents: } Simeon Clyde (Si) Williams & Bessie Crystal (Bess) McFarren
   Relationship No.}   5
1st Household No.} 80 = 1611 F Street, Napa, California
      Occupation 1} Housewife
       Occupation 2} Musician
       Occupation 3} Writer/author
  Religion/Church} Methodist
Spouses:    First } Hancock, Warren Samuel (Bud)
                Second} Duhig, Stewart Morton (Duke)
 Total Number of} 2
Source 14}    291 = Cookbook
Source 15}    856 = Newspaper
Source 16}    857 = Newspaper
Source 17}  1594 = Public index
Source 18}    415 = Address book
Source 19}    375 = Biography
Source 20}    324 = Death certif
Source 21}    861 = Death record
Source 22}  1599 = S.S. record
Source 23}    316 = Obituary
Source 24}      30 = Cemetery rec
Source 25}  1588 = Cemetery rec
Source 26}    675 = Photographs
Source 27}    701 = Photographs
Source 28}  1218 = Photographs
Notes:  Viola Clide Williams was born 12 Sep 1920 in Coffeyville, Kansas, while her mother was on a trip to Kansas to visit Vi's grandmother.  Shortly after her birth, her parents moved with her into a two-story house at 1611 F Street in Napa.  Vi loved that house and all of its good memories.  Vi started kindergarten in 1925 at the Lincoln School on Main Street in Napa.

In the 1930 U.S. census, Vi, 9, was living with her family at the 1611 F Street house.  Her father was a bookkeeper for a poultry plant. Besides her mother and younger sister Lorraine, her uncle Roy McFarren and his wife Nell lived with them.

Vi took piano lessons from Flossie Grigsby for 12 years.  She had piano recitals every year in the high school auditorium.  In the seventh grade at Intermediate School she started cello lessons.  She carried her cello to school twice a week for two years from the F Street house.

Vi's family moved into a house at 458 Brown Street just as she was ready for high school in 1934.  Vi walked two miles to high school and carried her cello each day until she got a boyfriend to carry it for her.

Lyrie Concert Trio Soon Vi was became quite proficient at music.  She joined with Marilyn Walker on violin, Vivian Gardner on piano, and Vi on cello to form the Lyrie Concert Trio.  See the photo at the left.   They played for teas, fashion shows, dinners, lodges — and even competed on Buddah's Amateur Hour on CBS Radio in San Francisco.  They won the audition and then in the finals, after six weeks of going down once a week, were beat out by a soprano in her 40s.

The Napa High School orchestra, under the direction of Luigi Catalano was getting very good during this time.  (Mr. Catalano was from Sicily and had played violin first chair in top symphonies in Italy.)  For three years Vi played very difficult operatic numbers with the orchestra.  Luigi formed the Philharmonic Society made up of the best of school instrumentalists.  Vi played concerts with them, accompanied guest stars, and played intermissions for Pretenders Playhouse plays.

Vi also played third-chair in the cello section in the Napa Valley Symphony orchestra with her father, a concert violinist.  She played two concerts with the Vallejo Symphony with her father.

Viola C. Williams Lorraine, Geno, & Viola The photo at the left shows Vi at age 18 in 1938.  It was then that she dated Geno Gattavara before she married Bud Hancock.  See the photo at the right.

After graduating from Napa High School, Vi received a nursing certificate from a nursing school in Sacramento.  Then she ran the lab and x-ray at the Napa State Hospital, Imola.  However, she was soon diagnosed as a TB carrier and had to give up her nursing career.

She also briefly tried modeling:  her legs were photographed for silk hosiery advertisements.

Vi married Bud Hancock on 19 Mar 1939 in the Presbyterian Church, San Rafael, Marin, California.  After first living with his parents, they bought a house at 1206 Banks Avenue in the Alta Heights area of Napa and moved in late 1939, along with their son Dan.  In the 1940 USA census this was their residence.  Bud and Vi's marriage ended on 15 Sep 1941 with a divorce.  Bud was awarded the custody of their child and also their Ford coupe.  Vi was awarded visitation rights and their house at 1206 Banks Avenue.

Vi married Duke Duhig on 16 Sep 1942 in the First Methodist Church, Napa, Napa, California.  Duke moved into the house on Banks Avenue.  At the time, Vi was employed at the Benicia Arsenal.    In voter registration records, she was listed as a clerk, and registered as a Democrat.  On their honeymoon, they traveled to Tahoe and/or Yosemite Park.  Their marriage lasted 44 years.

In the 1950 U.S. census, Vi, 30, was living with her husband Duke, 42, and their two children, James, 6, and Patricia, 3, at 246 Banks Avenue.  She was keeping house, and her husband was the owner of a tire store.  In 1980, Vi and Duke are listed as living at 1147 Hardman Avenue, Napa.

Vi was the past Noble Grand of the Ivy Rebekah Lodge No. 23 in Napa and a leader of the Vichy 4-H Club for 18 years.  She was a charter member of the Vichy Mothers Club and the Napa Valley Art Association.  She was also a member of the Napa Valley Garden Club, the Browns Valley Garden Club, the Welcome Wagon Garden Club, the Napa Valley Historical Society, Napa Valley Landmarks, the Sierra Club, and the Napa County Land Trust.

She was a double breast cancer survivor.  She had a mastectomy in 1955 and a second one in 1968.
Viola C. Duhig
Vi was the owner and operator of Vi's Begonia Garden at her Hardman Avenue residence for 25 years.  The photo at the right shows Vi with a cello at Fort Bragg circa 1975.

She wrote three cookbooks, published in 1979, 1980, and 1989, respectively, that were full of her family's edible heirlooms, family treasures and Vi's own unusual twists for entertaining.  After the death of her husband Duke, Vi published a book that he wrote called Huichica in 1990.

Viola C. Duhig Viola C. Duhig The photo on the left shows Vi in February 1986.  The photo on the right shows Vi in August 1986 in front of her home at 1147 Hardman Avenue in Napa.  During her last five years, she volunteered in the district attorney's office in the Victim's of Crime-Witness Program.

Vi died 2 Jun 1987, at home, at age 73 after a six-month battle with lung cancer.  She had been a heavy smoker of Chesterfield cigarettes during her younger years.  Her death certificate lists her middle name as Clyde.  A memorial service was held 1 Oct 1987 in the First Presbyterian Church, the Rev. Erwin E. Bollinger officiating.  Interment was in the Duhig plot in the Tulocay Cemetery, Napa, California.
Time of Birth}   Time of Death} 4:30 A.M. Fraternal/Social} Rebekah
Baptism Date}   Place}   Viola C. Williams
Confirm. Date}   Photos} Vi circa 1938 (age 18)
Immigr'n Date} N/A Port} N/A
Education: Grade} Junior college         Top Degree} Nursing school
Military: Service} None
Health Condition} Breast cancer x 2
  Cause of Death} Lung cancer
Last Updated
by} Karen Hancock
Date Updated}   1 Dec 2022
Date Created}  17  Jun 1994
Copyright © 2005, 2010, 2017 by Daniel W. Hancock and 2022 by Karen L. Hancock.  All Rights Reserved.

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