Thursday, April 25, 2013

Robert T. Griebling

Robert T. Griebling (b. Milwaukee, Wisconsin, 9 November 1901; d. Tarentum, Pennsylvania, 1959)

Robert Theodore Griebling was the oldest of three sons (three daughters died in infancy) of Oscar Griebling (1858-1928) and Louise Dammann (1867-1934), who were married in Milwaukee on 12 May 1897. Both parents were the children of German immigrants who had settled in Wisconsin. Oscar Griebling worked in insurance, and his wife Louise was a school teacher.

Robert T. Griebling in 1922
Robert T. Griebling and his brothers grew up speaking German at home, where they read Grimms fairy tales and other German stories, including tales of the Rübezahl, and Struwwelpeter. Robert attended the University of Wisconsin in Madison, studying journalism and graduating in 1922.  His thesis was on James Gibbon Huneker as a dramatic critic.  He married Mary H. Hughes (1902-1989) on 29 January 1927, and they settled near Pittsburgh, where Mary Griebling worked as a school teacher, and Robert T. Griebling worked in business.  

Some of  Griebling’s early writings were included in the “Little Blue Book” series published by Haldeman-Julius of Girard, Kansas. These include the title essay of Snyder-Gray Murder Echoes (1928), and pieces on “The Greek Letter System” in The Revolt of Modern Youth (1928) and “On the Correcting of the Plebs’ in Small Town Humor (1929).  One single short story, “A Wager in Candlesticks,” was published in Weird Tales magazine for May 1928. It is derivative of Richard Connell’s famous story “The Most Dangerous Game,” which had appeared in Collier’s Weekly for 19 January 1924 and which was filmed successfully in 1932.  Griebling’s variation has a Russian aristocrat killing people in candlestick duels.  After this Griebling apparently ceased publishing, until he collaborated with his two brothers on a pamphlet, The Story of Oscar Griebling on the Observance of the 100th Anniversary of His Birth, March 16, 1958 (1958), prepared as a memorial for the subjects grandsons.  The November, 1959, issue of Wisconsin Alumnus notes Robert T. Greibling’s passing. 

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