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Victor Rigal and Louis-Charles Rigal


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#1 Nanni Dietrich

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Posted 01 July 2022 - 15:03

Possibly we have already debated, in case, I apoligize.

 

In the early decades of 20th Century, two French drivers by the same surname competed in Europe with considerable success: Victor Rigal (born in 1879 in Paris) and Louis-Charles Rigal (also born in Paris, in 1887).

I did not find any source indicating they were relatives (brothers? cousins?)

What is the truth? :confused:


Edited by Nanni Dietrich, 01 July 2022 - 15:04.


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#2 Vitesse2

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Posted 01 July 2022 - 15:53

Definitely not brothers. Ancestry has birth records for both of them and although both their fathers were called Louis the signatures on the records are different. As are the maiden names of their mothers. From the look of it, Victor Rigal's father was barely literate - the recording clerk actually wrote the surname and 'Louis' is almost illegible. The signature of Louis-Charles's father is very neat.

 

Apart from one 1908 travel record for Victor - Le Havre to New York, final destination Savannah GA - and the marriage banns for his parents in 1877, that's all I can definitely assign to either of them though.



#3 robert dick

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Posted 01 July 2022 - 16:04

According for example to L'Auto/14 June 1924/page 2, Victor and Louis Rigal were brothers.
 



#4 Doug Nye

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Posted 01 July 2022 - 18:45

That would not have been the first time journalists got it wrong?

 

LOUIS-RIGAL.jpg

Louis Rigal

 

VICTOR-RIGAL.jpg

Victor Rigal

 

Brotherly resemblance?

 

DCN



#5 LittleChris

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Posted 01 July 2022 - 21:56

Don't know when each photo was taken in terms of each Rigals age but the eye's look very similar to me


Edited by LittleChris, 01 July 2022 - 21:57.


#6 Vitesse2

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Posted 02 July 2022 - 15:32

Copies of the birth records I mentioned above.

 

Victor Rigal, born 23 September 1879. Parents Achel Louis Rigal and Anne Appolina Abelina Mouillet.

 

Rigal1.jpg

 

Louis Charles Rigal, born 20 July 1887. Parents Louis Rigal and Marie Blanche Gaudry.

 

Rigal2.jpg

 

One thing which stands out is that Louis-Charles's father is stated to have been aged 22. Which pretty much negates the possibility that Louis-Charles was Victor's brother!



#7 oliver heal

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Posted 05 July 2022 - 19:24

Maurice Louche gives them as brothers in his "Siecle de Grands Pilotes Francais" so historians as well as journalists make mistakes. The age of the fathers seems to rule out that relationship  but the signature is fairly similar. Interesting that Louis-Charles' mother was not married.



#8 Michael Ferner

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Posted 24 February 2024 - 15:39

Not really helpful at all, I know, but just an example of how even period sources can lead one astray: During his motorcycle days, Victor Rigal was once entered as "Louis-Victor Rigall, Paris", and even the Motocycle-Club de France, in an early attempt to raise awareness for the sport's pioneers in 1935, began its list of 94 laureats with the year 1897 and the name Louis Rigal...



#9 brands77

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Posted 05 March 2024 - 13:25

Are they any relation to Hubert Rigal, b 1948, the Monegasque motorbike rider, Dakar racer and classic bike dealer?



#10 Laurent Friry

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Posted 06 March 2024 - 20:17

The French sport newspaper L’Auto, which changed name to L’Equipe after WWII, published the obituary of both Victor Rigal (4 June 1941 issue) and Louis Rigal (15 Aug. 1953 issue).

 

Victor Rigal was born on 22 Sept. 1879 and he died on 1st  June 1941,  while cycling close to the city of Gisors, he was 62 years old.

 

Louis Rigal was born on May 29, 1895,  he died during the first half of August 1953 (I haven’t been able to find yet the exact day), aged 59 years old following a surgery intervention.

It is also mentioned that he was the half-brother of Victor, who passed away about 12 years earlier.

 

L-Auto-v-lo-VR.jpgL-quipe-LR.jpg



#11 Michael Ferner

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Posted 07 March 2024 - 07:07

Thank you, excellent finds!  :up:



#12 ReWind

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Posted 07 March 2024 - 07:18

I agree.
But if "L'Auto" on the 4th says Victor Regal "est mort, hier", should that not point to the 3rd instead of the 1st? (Although the 1st was a Sunday, perhaps more appropriate for a family bicycle tour.)

Regarding Louis Regal: So we have to accept that the 1887 to 1974 guy was the wrong one?



#13 Michael Ferner

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Posted 07 March 2024 - 08:29

I would think so, yes. Didn't look right for me anyway, as it would have made him quite old when starting his career.



#14 Laurent Friry

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Posted 07 March 2024 - 21:34

I also agree with you but... I found another obituary published in L'Officiel de l'Automobile, du cycle, de la motocyclette from 22 June 1941 that indicates that Victor Rigal passed away on May 12, 1941 ! 

I think this is wrong date, as I found another announcement about his funeral (see bottom picture)

 

L-Officiel-du-cycle-du-motocycle-bd6t541

 

 

In the newspaper Le Matin from June 4, 1941 (see below), an announcement from the Rigal family is indicated that Victor died on June 1st and his funeral will be on June 5th 1941 (the same date is also published in L'Auto) . We can then supposed that there are exact dates.

                 

 

Le-Matin-derniers-t-l-grammes-bpt6k58711



#15 Nanni Dietrich

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Posted 09 March 2024 - 08:12

I have strong doubts about the one Louis Rigal born in 1895 and dead in 1953.

 

It would mean ALL the researchers, journalists, books, websites, magazines all around the World, since 70 years ago, including the Bibliothèque Nationale de France, were WRONG? :eek:

 

In addition to the article published by L'Auto, posted by "Laurent Friry", I don't find any other newspaper article from August 1953, confirming the deceased man named Louis Rigal was the race car driver.

I lean more towards an error on the part of the editors of the newspaper L'Auto, who confused the name of a man who died in 1953 (born in 1895) named Louis Rigal, believing he was the racer.

 

And, Louis-Charles Rigal (our man) was born in 1887, according to the birth certificate posted by "Vitesse2", not in 1895.


Edited by Nanni Dietrich, 09 March 2024 - 08:20.


#16 ReWind

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Posted 09 March 2024 - 08:31

Is there evidence (from contemporary sources) that the racing driver was Louis Charles Rigal?

To me Laurent Friry's discovery is convincing because it fits with the long-going assumption that Victor and Louis were brothers. Now we learn that they were half-brothers.

Of course a birth certificate for the one born in 1895 would help. Does it show the same father (or the same mother) as the 1879 birth certificate from post # 6?



#17 Michael Ferner

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Posted 09 March 2024 - 08:58

I fully agree with Reinhard. As stated earlier, I was always a bit doubtful about the supposed age of Louis, but realize that's a weak argument. A birth certificate would certainly help!

 

I don't think it'd be very unusual for wrong info to spread to various 'original' sources, it happens all the time. I mean, how many of us are prepared to check every detail of info we find? I for one am very happy to know people like Reinhard who have specialized in this sort of research, so I don't have to perform this (to me) tedious task, and I suppose others are happy for not having to do the things I do. Division of labour is a great thing, I don't have to learn to bake in order to enjoy the bread I eat! In return, we accept that the things in this world are not all exactly like we would have it.



#18 Nanni Dietrich

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Posted 09 March 2024 - 10:04

Is there evidence (from contemporary sources) that the racing driver was Louis Charles Rigal?

To me Laurent Friry's discovery is convincing because it fits with the long-going assumption that Victor and Louis were brothers. Now we learn that they were half-brothers.

Of course a birth certificate for the one born in 1895 would help. Does it show the same father (or the same mother) as the 1879 birth certificate from post # 6?

 

But Reinhard, if they were half-brothers... it is confirmed that Victor's half-brother was Louis-Charles, born in 1887. Both of them, sons of Louis Rigal. Not the one born in 1895 (waiting for eventual birth certificate). Half brothers, 16 years difference??? very strange...

 

I am convinced that this information was already known in 1953 and the author of L'Auto's article added it to the short biography of Louis Rigal (the alleged racer) he wrote.


Edited by Nanni Dietrich, 09 March 2024 - 10:10.


#19 ReWind

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Posted 09 March 2024 - 10:47

Both of them, sons of Louis Rigal.

But look at post # 2.



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#20 ReWind

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Posted 09 March 2024 - 15:08

Half brothers, 16 years difference??? very strange...

Something similar happened a century later in your patria, Nanni:

MotoGP rider Luca Marini (b. 1997) is a half-brother to the legendary Valentino Rossi (b. 1979). 18 ½ years between them, and they do not share their father but their mother!



#21 Michael Ferner

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Posted 09 March 2024 - 15:52

Half brothers, 16 years difference??? very strange...

 

 

not at all. My mother was almost twenty years younger than her oldest brother, and two of my elementary school class mates were aunt and niece to each other (the niece actually a few months older than her aunt) - and that's with the same parents in both cases, no half siblings!


Edited by Michael Ferner, 09 March 2024 - 15:55.