BLEMKER CLIPPINGER, Class of 1910
October 3, 1887 - December 3, 1929
Journalism Hall of Fame in 1966
Nine students founded Sigma Delta Chi, later to become The Society of
Professional Journalists, at DePauw in 1909. Three of those
founders were Psi Phi Dekes, Charles
Pulliam, and Gilbert
When Gilbert Clippinger was a young boy, he was enterprising and had
many projects. He had a newspaper route and started writing for his
school newspapers at an early age. His father was a Methodist minister.
The family moved from New Albany, Indiana, to Vincennes, Indiana, where
Gilbert attended school through his junior year in high school. They
then moved to Indianapolis and he finished his high school career at
Shortridge High. He was in the senior play, on the debate team, and was
valedictorian of his class - the class of 1906.
He entered DePauw University in 1906. While at DePauw he worked his
way through school by being manager of The DePauw Men's Glee Club and by
writing a column for the Indianapolis Star. Like his father, Henry
Clayton Clippinger '82, his uncle, J.A. Clippinger '85, and his older
brother, H.F. Clippinger '08, Gilbert was a member of Psi Phi of Delta
Kappa Epsilon. He also was a member of the debate team and
graduated Phi Beta Kappa in 1910. While at DePauw, he and nine of his
friends founded Sigma Delta Chi, a journalistic honorary fraternity.
In his class was Anna Ibach, who was his sweetheart through college.
They were married October 9, 1910. Anna's father, George Ibach '83, was
a Psi Phi Deke, as was her brother Joe '14. Her mother also graduated from DePauw as did her
grandfather. Gilbert and Anna had two daughters, Mary Jane and Jo Anne,
both of whom attended DePauw. Gilbert's sister, Mary Eleanor, also
was a DePauw grad.
Gilbert was a family man and enjoyed his family and friends. His
closest friends were his high school and college classmates. He was an
active member of the Meridian Street Methodist Church in Indianapolis,
Indiana. His hobbies were sports related for he enjoyed golf, hunting,
and fishing. Yearly, he went on fishing expeditions into Canada to fish
for muskies. A local pleasure of his was frog gigging at the fish
hatcheries in Martinsville, Indiana. An entirely different hobby was
singing tenor in a barbershop quartet.
Upon graduating, he worked briefly for the Indianapolis Star and then
went to work for the Fletcher Trust Co. in Indianapolis, where he became
a vice president in charge of bond purchases. The bank sent him to Coral
Gables, Florida, during the land boom of 1926 to buy and develop
property. After returning to Indianapolis in 1928, he worked there for
the bank until his death in 1929 at age 42.