Introduction

"Isn't somebody in this family going to do something else [besides writing]?" -- Ring Lardner, Sr. (Lardner, p. 244).

A family portrait in 1923. From left: Bill, Jim, Ring, David and John.

Ring Lardner was one of the most popular sportswriters of his time. He began writing for the small town newspaper of South Bend, Ind., near his home in Niles, Mich. Later he moved to Chicago and New York writing many entertaining short stories for readers of all ages and classes. He also had four sons: John, James, Ring Jr., and David. All four of his sons went on to become great writers in their own sense. Three of them, John, Jim, and David were war correspondents. Ring Jr., also known as Bill, became infamous when he became known as one of the "Hollywood Ten." This group of ten screenwriters were blacklisted from Hollywood during the 1950s because they were followers of Communism.

Many of Ring's grandchildren have also become prolific writers. His great-nephew George Jr. recently won a Pulitzer Prize for a story about his own daughter's death, and Ring's grandson James is a novelist. I encourage you to take a deeper look into how much the English language has played a part in the Lardners' lives.


Pages created by Sarah Bembry.