I am continuing today with a week of posting transcriptions of newspaper articles about Clara Ward, the daughter of Eber Brock Ward. These articles provide a glimpse into 20 years of scandal and adventure in Pre-WWI Europe.
From the New York Times, Jul. 16, 1910, pg. 4: “CLARA WARD ASKS DIVORCE. Former Princess Chimay Sues Husband, Peppino Ricciardi, in Paris. PARIS, July 15 - Clara Ward, formerly Princess Chimay, has brought formal divorce proceedings against her husband, Peppino Ricciardi. The court made the customary efforts to effect a reconciliation, but without sucess.”
From the New York Times, May 29, 1915, pg. 5: “PRINCESS DISINHERITED. Mother of Former Clara Ward Leaves Her Only $1,000. CHICAGO, May 28 - Oue [sic] of an estate valued at more than $1,000,000, the former Princess di Chimay, who was Clara Ward of Detroit, Mich., is bequeathed only $1,000, by the will of her mother, Mrs. Catherine L. Ward-Morrow, of London.
The will, filed here yesterday for probate, disposes of the estate to various relatives. The legal residence of the family has been in Chicago and the fortune left the former Princess by her father, E.B. Ward, a millionaire ship owner of Detroit, has been held in trust for her here. Mrs. Morrow and her daughter, however, spent most of their time abroad.
Acquaintences of Mme. Ricciardi, as the former Princess is now know, said today that she is now living in New York.”
From the New York Times, Dec. 19, 1916, pg. 3: “CLARA WARD DIES IN ITALY. Former Princess Chimay, Who Eloped with Rigo, Gypsy Violinist. DETROIT, Mich., Dec. 18 - Princess Chimay and Caraman, formerly Miss Clara Ward, of Detroit, died at her Villa in Italy today, according to advices to the Detroit Free Press. The cause of death is not given.
Clara Ward, formerly the Princess Chimay, and later the wife of Peppino Ricciardo, was born in 1873 in Detroit, Mich. She was the daughter of the late Captain Eber Ward, the wealthiest man in Michigan, where he was known as the ‘King of the Lakes.’ He left her more than $3,000,000.
Miss Ward was educated in London. She met Prince Joseph of Chimay and Caraman in Nice, to whom she was married by the Papal Nuncio in Paris, in 1890.
Four years later, Princess Chimay met Rigo, the Gypsy violinist, who was then playing in a Paris cafe. She became infatuated with him and shortly afterward they eloped and for several years they were frequently heard of in various European capitals. They were together for about three years, and the last heard of the affair was in 1913, when she sued Rigo for $100,000, which she alleged she had loaned to him.
In June, 1904, Princess Chimay married Peppino Ricciardo, a canvasser for a tourist agency in Paris, but was unhappy in this union, as it was reported during 1910 that they had parted.”