Tuesday, April 12, 2016


Ink-Slinger Profiles by Alex Jay: Sam Loyd Jr.

Sam Loyd Jr. was born Walther L. Loyd in Elizabeth, New Jersey, on June 15, 1873. Loyd’s birth information was found in the New Jersey Birth Index at Ancestry.com.

The 1880 U.S. Federal Census recorded Loyd in Jersey City, New Jersey at 427 Grove Street. He was the second of three children which included two sisters. Their parents were Samuel, a printer, and Addie.

The Brooklyn Daily Eagle (New York), February 24, 1934, said Loyd attended Brooklyn public schools and Pratt Institute. In the Brooklyn Eagle Sunday Magazine, January 19, 1927, Loyd talked about his early career in newspapers.

“I started to earn a living at 18 by becoming a cub reporter on the New York Mail and Express. Soon after I was given charge of their Brooklyn office, where I was expected to letter the bulletin board, solicit advertising and turn in a daily column of Brooklyn news.

“Later I joined the staff of the Brooklyn Standard Union under Murat Halstead, the famous Cincinnati ‘war editor.’ Eventually I became the editor of the Mount Vernon (N.Y.) Chronicle, a country weekly.

“As the result of my successful efforts to make this a live newspaper by a puzzle department, I soon decided to make puzzles my life business. I went about the country interesting editors in the feature, and later went to Europe….”
According to the 1892 New York state census, Loyd, a clerk, resided with his parents and three sisters in Brooklyn. Loyd’s father, an editor, was known for his writings on chess, and starting in the 1890s, gained world-wide fame as a puzzlemaker. Loyd worked with his father.

Loyd has not been found in the 1900 census, but he was recorded in the 1905 New York state census at 153 Halsey in Brooklyn. Both Loyd and his father were on the editorial staff of a newspaper. Sometime after this census, Loyd changed his name to Samuel “Sam” Loyd Jr.

The New York, New York, Marriage Index, at Ancestry.com, recorded Loyd’s marriage to Helen M. Douglas on November 21, 1907, in Manhattan. Loyd’s marriage was mentioned in the Salt Lake Tribune (Utah), December 1, 1907.

In the 1910 census, Loyd was married to Helen and they had a year old son, Samuel Jr. The family lived in the Bronx at 1027 Southern Boulevard. Loyd was a self-employed journalist.

American Newspaper Comics (2012) said Loyd produced the Adventures of Tom Tinker—The Puzzle Kid from November 6, 1910 to May 13, 1911. Tom Tinker appeared in the Daily Eagle which published Tom Tinker’s Blackboard Puzzles beginning June 3.

A 1911 New York city directory listed Loyd and his father at 7 Dey Street, room five. Both were involved with puzzles. Loyd resided at 1027 Southern Boulevard, while his father was at 153 Halsey in Brooklyn.

The Daily Eagle, April 11, 1911, reported the death of Loyd’s father.

Loyd continued to produce puzzles for various publications.

The 1915 state census listed Loyd, a journalist, in Hempstead, Long Island, New York, on Hamilton Place.

Loyd signed his World War I draft card on September 12, 1918. The author lived at 433 Dean Street and worked at 246 Fulton Street; both addresses were in Brooklyn. He was described as tall, medium build with blue eyes and brown hair.

According to the 1920 census, Loyd was a Brooklyn resident at 205 St. James Place. He had his own business as a self-employed author. He was featured in the Sunday Eagle Magazine, January 9, 1927.

Loyd has not been found in the 1930 census.

Loyd passed away February 23, 1934, in Brooklyn. His death was reported the next day in the Daily Eagle, February 24, 1934. News of the funeral service was published two days later. Loyd was buried in Maple Grove Cemetery the same as his father. The terms of Loyd’s will were revealed in the Daily Eagle, March 7, 1934. 

—Alex Jay


I only discovered this lovely summary a few hours after I posted my own such appraisal:


Nicely done!
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