Fanny Cory Romance In Syndicated 1904 Minneapolis Tribune Article

Syndicated article, as it appeared in the Minneapolis Tribune, May 1, 1904, p. 4 

(This article was kindly provided to F.Y. Cory Publishers by Ruth Berman)

Note: the accompanying photos could not be provided

because of the poor quality of the aged microfiche prints.

"Romantic Marriage of the Girl

Who Draws Cute Babies

Won Like the Heroine in a Melodrama."


            News of the culmination of a delightful romance comes from Montana. Of course, that means the marriage of the hero and heroine. In this case the heroine is especially distinguished by reason of the extent to which she has endeared herself to many thousands who have never seen her. And the romance is a welcome relief from the usual article supplied by this sedate and uneventful age, being of the good old-fashioned kind, in which the hero rescues the heroine from the very brink of death.

            In short, this heroine is none other than Fanny Y. Cory, whose characteristic pictures of children and child life have delighted magazine readers for the last half dozen years. The charming pictures on this page from the pen of Miss Cory are from the recent files of Harper's Bazaar, and many of them were drawn to illustrate ''The Memoirs of a Baby," a delightful volume just issued by Harper & Brothers.

            In view of the news from Montana, to glance at these pictures is to excite new and pleasurable anticipations. Every one of these marvellously lifelike little ones, in their infinite variety of characteristic infantile attitudes and expressions of countenance -- denoting the various emotions to be expected in a genuine live baby undergoing the usual vicissitudes of baby existence -- is the creation of a spinster, who had to content herself with the study of other people's babies.

            Now that she is Mrs. Fred W. Cooney, how can we refrain from pleasant speculations upon the future? When other people's babies depicted by Miss Cory's pen are so irresistible, what delights may we not anticipate when happy and proud motherhood has furnished Mrs. Cooney with inspiration and little models that are all her own?

            Strange coincidence! The gifted author of ''The Memoirs of a Baby," who, like the illustrator, was a spinster -- Josephine Dodge Daskam -- is now a wife also. In their future collaborations -- well, it certainly is something well worth looking forward to.


             If ever a girl deserved a real romance that girl was Fanny Y. Cory. With her own brains and hands she built up her own fortune while giving wholesome pleasure to thousands of her fellow-beings in all classes of society. She was born in the far West -- Helena, Montana -­where only ripples from the art centers are felt. As a mite of a girl she felt that she had talent. To develop it she realized the necessity of study under competent masters, and seven years ago she established herself in New York.

            Almost from the start she found a market for her drawings. Her reputation grew and her work improved so that in 1901 she received honorable mention at the Pan-American Exposition. Pupils, as well as publishers, flocked to her. In her leisure moments she conducted an art school in which several illustrators now in demand caught the spirit of her methods.

            The close application to her dual task of illustrating and teaching undermined her health, and two years ago she returned to her native State to recuperate. She built a charming bungalow in the mountains where she could work, while utilizing every spare moment at outdoor exercise. As her health improved under the influence of that simple life and the bracing mountain atmosphere, she increased her indulgence in vigorous outdoor exercise and sports until now she is a fine, athletic young woman.

            Of course, Miss Cory's reputation had preceded her. Montana was proud of her and would have overwhelmed her with attentions but for the knowledge that she needed quiet and freedom from the social obligations. But as the last holiday season approached her complete restoration to health was so apparent that society would no longer be refused. In fact, she was glad to take part in the festivities of her old home --and this renunciation of her hermitlike existence precipitated the romance.

            Miss Cory had learned to love the outdoor sports which had restored her health and spirits. So, when, in December, a large skating party was formed in Helena she eagerly joined it. Many of those in the party were friends of her school days, while others were comparatively new residents whom she was to meet for the first time. One of the latter was young Fred Cooney, son of a wealthy ranchman -- a splendid specimen of physical manhood and a trained athlete. 

Fanny Still Single


            The evidence of the young ranchman's complete subjugation the moment he set eyes upon the artist was the subject of quiet laughing comment among Miss Cory's old friends. They teased her about it a little as the party set out merrily for Lake Sewall.

            "Poor, dear Fred," said one of the girls, "it is all over with Fred!"

            "He's perfectly splendid," said another; "Fanny couldn't possibly do better."

             But Miss Cory's mind was all on the skating. Lake Sewall is just across the Missouri River from Helena. It is very deep, and was formed as a storage reservoir in connection with the great dam at this point.

            There had been a week of sharp cold weather, but the day of the memorable skating party was mild, with a brilliant sun in the sky. The air was fine and bracing, and the party found the surface of the ice in splendid condition for skating -- a kind of ice about which skaters in the city parks know nothing. It was like glass, without a crack and as yet without a scratch from a steel runner.

            The girls were delighted with the prospects for an ideal afternoon's sport. They could hardly wait to have their skates strapped on. Young Cooney would have given his ears for the privilege of performing this service for Miss Cory. All the girls knew it and guyed him slyly -­which made it all the more impossible for him to arise to the occasion on such short acquaintance.

            This is one of the tantalizing features of social occasions in the West. Esprit de corps prevails to such an extent that there is rarely any "pairing off," except in the case of engaged couples and husbands and wives. Everybody is attentive to everybody else, and all watch for opportunities for mischievous raillery.

            But the smitten young ranchman's hour was approaching.

             Miss Cory is an accomplished skater. Sh3 had no need for the support of anybody's strong right arm. What she felt that she did need was to speed away over the smooth surface, with the ringing sound of the steel runners in her ears and her whole body tingling with the pleasure of the swift, rhythmical motions of the experienced skater's whole body. Her contemplative habit naturally separated her, under these conditions, from her laughing, chattering companions.


             The ice seemed perfectly safe. In some places near the shore, where the sun was reflected from a steep, bare, black bank, there were puddles of melted ice, but the only problem these occasioned was where some unlucky skater missed the stroke to avoid a place and fell, dripping, after splashing some half a dozen yards in the bank. Then there was laughter, but no warning. {Some words may be transcribed inaccurately. This paragraph suffered in the microfilm process.}

            On the northern side of the lake, where the high bank is sheltered by clumps of willows, the rays of the sun beat in so fiercely, even on that December day, and were reflected with such added intensity that the ice for quite a distance was rotten. In the glare of the sun even the practiced eye would not have noticed this. The preoccupied young ranchman, however, having lost his footing in one such place, was beginning to have suspicions -- especially as he observed the tendency of Miss Cory to ''flock by herself."

            Even now she was far away from the rest, and if there was danger at the spot just described she would soon know it, for she was now skirting the northern margin of the lake. On a sudden impulse Young Cooney shot out across the lake to interrupt and caution her.

            He was still fifty yards away when he saw Miss Cory swerve suddenly toward the shore, as though alarmed, and an instant later disappear through the ice. The instinct which had turned her toward the shore had drawn her to the spot where the ice was rottenest.

            Nearly the whole party witnessed the appalling accident from a distance, and saw Fred Cooney speeding to the rescue. They saw Miss Cory's head appear above the broken ice just as the ranchman reached the spot, only to become himself a victim of the treacherous surface. The men hastened to the rescue while the frightened girls made haste to the nearest shore.

            Fortunately Mr. Cooney is a fine swimmer and inured to all sorts of hardships. A few strokes carried him to the artist struggling in the water among the lumps of broken ice.


            "Take a firm hold on my coat collar," he said, "and don't be frightened."

            Miss Cory did as she was told and felt that she was in strong and resolute hands. She did not know until afterward that the water at that point was more than forty feet deep.

             Knowing that to reach the shore it would be necessary to break the ice all the way, Mr. Cooney swam with his fair burden toward the solid ice farther out. . Reaching it he treaded water, and, lifting the artist, set her upon the edge of the ice. It immediately crumbled beneath her.

            The rescuing party was still some distance away. Three times Mr. Cooney lifted Miss Cory upon the ice -- a feat possible only to an expert swimmer and a strong man -- and each time her weight was too much for the sun-rotted margins. The fourth -- and the last of which the fatigued swimmer would have been capable -- succeeded.

            "Hurry!" he said. "Get farther away -- to the solid ice."

            "But you," she said, "you will drown."

            "Pshaw!" panted the ranchman, "I can tumble about here all the afternoon: do as I tell you."

             As the rescuers were now at hand, Miss Cory concluded to obey orders. Afterward she smiled on recalling that Fred Cooney was the only man who had ever presumed to express himself to her in such peremptory fashion.

            By throwing himself full length on the ice, each man gripping the next one by the ankles, the man next to the open water was thrust forward till he could reach the swimmer, then one strong pull all together and the exhausted ranch man was safe.

            This was enough skating for that day. Neither Miss Cory nor Mr. Cooney suffered even a cold in the head from their experience. And it is to be remarked that not one of this party had the hardihood to appear to notice from that day on the fast ripening intimacy between the artist and her rescuer.

            When there were other skating parties, and Mr. Cooney evinced an inflexible' determination to strap on Miss Cory's skates, nobody paid any attention -- except Miss Cory, who had no objection whatever. When there was dancing, the sight of Miss Cory's card filled from top to bottom with Cooney's name excited no comment. And when the hero and heroine of the skating episode were discovered in the act of "sitting out" at least half of these dances in secluded nooks, everybody, with a common impulse, looked the other way.

Fanny and Fred Many Years Later

            Never before had a Western community so completely overcome its disposition to make uncomfortable a young man in the early throes of his first serious love affair. This shows how universal is interest and sympathy in a genuine, old-fashioned romance. That of Miss Cory and Mr. Cooney was "pushed along" by every means known to their friends.

            Within two months the engagement had been quietly announced -- and now the name "Fanny Y. Cory" exists for professional purposes only.

This site was created by Fanny Young Cory’s grandson –Bob Dodgson

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