ST. CLAIR, Labert Sprint - Fountain County INGenWeb Project

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ST. CLAIR, Labert Sprint

Photo from Ancestery - Susan-Neikirk

Source: None given but assumedly the Danville News ?

Sprint St. Clair is married. Everybody of the newspaper guild in Danville remember this brilliant young newspaper man, who began his career as a reporter for the Commercial News and whose meteoric rise in the newspaper world has been a source of great pleasure to his friends. The Chicago Tribune of Tuesday mroning reproduces the painting of the "lark girl," with the following story. "A midnight automobile dash to Wheaton, a bride-to-be, roused protestingly from her slumbers, an early morning service before a justice of the peace, that's how the "lark girl," was married yesterday. The "lark girl," to be explicit was Miss Mae G. Dirks, a sister of Rudolph Dirks, creator of the Katzenjammer Kids, who draws Hans & Fritz for the Sunday Tribune. Miss Dirks, a former school teacher won her sobriquet by posig for a remarkable faithful production of Jules Breton's famous painting, The Song of the Lark. A year or two ago Labert St. Clair - better known in newspaper circles as "Sprint" St. Clair - was hunting bear in the WIsconsin woods. St. Clair has been handling "big" stories for the Associated Press for some time now, but in this instance he was trying to forget that work existed. One afternoon a pelting rainstorm drove him to shelter of an old time log schoolhouse, and as he himself put it, "Bing! Zowie! Biff! There was the girl." The romance began right there. Correspondence fostered it when Miss Dirks went abroad, but the wedding date was never set. Late Sunday night St. Clair arrived unheralded in Chicago. He made a dash for Miss Dirk's home, woker her up, roused Judge W.H. Johnson of Wheaton and before she knew it, the gasping bride was greeted as Mrs. St. Clair. An hour or two later the couple left Chicago for an impromptu wedding trip to Bermuda. ON their return they will live in Washington where Mr. St. Clair is an importnat member of the Associated Press staff at the capital.

Source: Dec 22, 1949 - Wheaton Illinois News

Mr. and Mrs. Gordon St. Clair of Glen Ellyn have just returned from the funeral Tuesday of Labert St. Clair in Washington DC. Labert St. Clair, 62, publicist, writer and former Chicago newsman died suddenly Saturday morning near Vienna, VA. Services were held at 10 a.m. Tuesday in Washington where he made his home. Death was caused by a heart attack. Mr. St. Clair had been a frequent visitor at the home of his brother, Gordon St. Clair of 751 Riford Road and had many friends in Glen Ellyn and Wheaton Born in Veedersburg, Ind Mr. St. Clair began his newspaper career as a reporter for the Danville, Ill Democrat and the Danville Commercial News. In 1907 he joined the staff of the Chicago Inter-Ocean. Later, he served as traveling correspondent for the Associated Press as night city editor of the AP Chicago bureau, and manager of the AP Bureau in Albany, NY. From 1909-1917 he was head of the AP House of Representatives staff in the nationals captial leaving that position in 1917 to serve for two years as director of a newspaper and magazine publicity for the war-time Liberty Loan drive. In 1933 he helped organize the publicity bureau of the NRA and the Federal Housing Administration in Washington and served from 1935-1937 as transportation assistant to Secretary of Commerce Roper. Since 1937 he had engaged in private practice as a public relations counselor. Among his writing are two books, Transportation Since Time Began, a historical survey and I've Met the Folks, his reminiscences of a news career. His other writings include The Story of the Liberty Loans, Getting the Public Eye and Ear, Juggling the Heavyweights, and a newspaper column syndicated from Washington in 1919-1920. He was also the author of various magazine articles, published most frequently in Nation's Business. In 1916, he was married in Wheaton to Miss Mae G. Dirks, then of Chicago. Surviving are his widow and two daughters.

Thanks so very much to: Susan Neikirk Grovetown, IN for these nifty pieces :) kz

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