Yesterday I mentioned how I was trying to track down David Pace Wigransky, the author of a letter during the comics scare of the ’50′s. Well, after what was a very tiring but shorter-than-imagined search, I actually found him.
The first thing I did was google him, of course–which provided the information that he had published a book on Al Jolson (Jolsonography). Or I should say may have written–there were two Amazon entries. One listed him as the author, another listed a man named Dave Jay. I searched copyright holdings and found that the two men had also apparently worked together on a book called Raising Hell, published in 1963 by the self-publisher Vantage Press.
So, I tracked down Vantage Press, and called them a total of three times to get through their automated menu. Editorial led to an automated message stating that the chief editor had left and could be reached elsewhere. Pressing ’0′ gave me a voicemail line that cut off after 45 seconds, before I could finish spelling “wigransky.” Finally, though, I hit upon accounting, where a lady who was obviously bemused and a little confused by my question told me they don’t keep records that far back.
Back to google. This time I checked the Social Security death index. He would be around 78, so maybe he had passed away. But I found nothing.
What eventually happened is I took a break from trying to find Wigransky to actually start writing the paper, and at the very bottom of an article someone had sent me for reference was the note that David Pace Wigransky died in 1969, around the age of thirty-six.
I am very sad, and in need of chocolate.