| Drauzin Joseph Angelle
(Louisiana political power broker known as "the father of the
|Born|| December 25, 1871 |
St. Martin Parish
|Died|| December 19, 1958 (aged 86) |
Cecilia, St. Martin Parish
|Spouse|| (1) Aminthe Guidry Angelle (married 1892-died)
(2) Agnes Guidry Dupuis Angelle (married 1894-1958, his death)
Drauzin Joseph Angelle (December 25, 1871 – December 19, 1958) was a French-American farmer and deputy sheriff and a Democratic power broker for his native St. Martin Parish, Louisiana, from 1924 until his death. Located near Lafayette, St. Martin Parish is known for its traditional sugar-production.
Angelle was born in Breaux Bridge in St. Martin Parish to Jean Baptiste Angelle (1842-1922), a veteran of the Confederate Army, and the former Arthemise Dupuis (born 1843-date of death unavailable) (pronounced DEW PWEE). He was twice married, first in 1892 to the former Aminthe Guidry (1872-date of death unclear), by whom he had a daughter, Mozella Marie Angelle Willis (1892-1970). Aminth apparently died in childbirth or shortly thereafter. In 1894, Angelle wed Aminthe's older sister, Agnes Guidry Dupuis (1869-1969), and they had eight children.
TDrauzin and Agnes' only son, Robert Joseph "Bob" Angelle, served in the 1920s as the mayor of Breaux Bridge, also in St. Martin Parish, and thereafter as a state representative from 1934 to 1964. Bob Angelle was also the House Speaker from 1957 to 1960 in the third Earl Long administration. One of their seven daughters, Agnes A. Hardy (1904-2008), who died at the age of 103, was a teacher and school principal from Cecilia and the mother of future Louisiana Lieutenant Governor Paul Hardy, the first Republican to hold that office, with service from 1988 to 1992. Paul Hardy was hence a grandson of Drauzin Angelle and a nephew of Speaker Bob Angelle. Hardy's brother, Florent Hardy, Jr., Ph.D., has served as Louisiana's State Archivist since 2000.
Drauzin Angelle's only elected position was as a constable for the Fifth Ward, a position that he held from 1914 to 1924, when he became the chief deputy under Sheriff Wade O. Martin, Sr., and continued in that capacity after Martin was elected in 1932 to the Louisiana Public Service Commission. Angelle hence remained chief deputy under a number of sheriffs who ran for reelection every four years along with the gubernatorial race, but Angelle as the power behind the sheriff remained chief deputy through three decades. Angelle was known as the organizer of "The Old Faction" and the "Father of the Fifth Ward".
Angelle was tied to the Long political faction|faction as was Sheriff Martin. However, in the late 1950s, following the death of Wade Martin, Sr., son Wade O. Martin, Jr. (1911-1990) as the elected Secretary of State, quarreled with Governor Earl Kemp Long, who obtained legislative passage of bills to strip the junior Martin of much of the jurisdiction of his office. From this dispute, the since disbanded Elections Commissioner position, was established under the name "Custodian of Voting Machines." Martin ran for governor in the first ever nonpartisan blanket primary election held on November 1, 1975. Incumbent Edwin Edwards defeated both Martin and then state Senator Robert G. Jones of Lake Charles, a son of former Governor Sam Houston Jones, the leader of the anti-Long faction. Wade Martin, Jr., like his successor, Paul Hardy, later switched his partisan affiliation from Democrat to Republican.
- Agnes Angelle obituary. avoyellestoday.com. Retrieved on May 21, 2020.
- Drauzin Joseph Angelle. Findagrave.com. Retrieved on May 21, 2020.
- Angelle, Drauvin. A Dictionary of Louisiana Biography: Louisiana Historical Association. Retrieved on May 21, 2020.
- Agnes Guidry Angelle. Findagrave.com. Retrieved on May 21, 2020.