The Amazing Lanes
an addendum
Dennis E. Power
expanding upon The Amazing Lanes by Win Eckert

The story of Margo Lane is more complex. She was born Mary DeLorn in New Orleans, c. 1910. Her mother was an African-American woman named Eula DeLorn, her father an unnamed New Orleans politician, who refused to acknowledge the child. Mary changed her name to Margaret, moved to Chicago, and was briefly married to broker Dick Evans in 1928. The marriage lasted one year before he apparently committed suicide amidst an embezzlement scandal. She fled Chicago, changed her name again, to Margo, and eventually met Lamont Cranston, a shadowy figure who offered her a position in his organization. She accepted.

In 1931, in order to prevent unscrupulous characters from making a connection between Cranston and Margo, Cranston arranged for twenty-year-old Margo to be legally adopted by Dr. Reinhardt Lane, who was also an "associate" in Cranston's organization. Margo Lane spent several years establishing her identity as a wealthy New York socialite about town. She also came to view Reinhardt Lane as the true father she had never known. Finally, late in 1934, Margo received a call from a gentleman named Burbank, and the real fun began.

In 1949, Kent Allard, the man Margo knew as Lamont Cranston, closed up his operations in New York City and prepared to depart for the mystic land of Shamballa. He left Margo with a gift, and their son Kent Lane was born in 1950. Kent Lane went on to become a private eye, although only one of his cases has ever been recorded.

    The above is an excerpt from Mr. Win Eckert's The Amazing Lanes. It uncovers the truth of Margo Lane's heritage with facts discovered by Gerard Jones and Mr. Eckert. The truth is, however, often elusive, especially when we are dealing with people adept at creating false identity trails. Margo successfully hid her true history aided by the fact that her mother had assumed a different name than her birth name. She did this to spare her parents the shame of knowing what their daughter had become.

    Margo Lane whose birth name was Mary DeLorn was the daughter of Eula DeLorn. Eula DeLorn's birth name was Eula Silver. She was the daughter of Yancey De La Roguierre Silver and Clotel David. Yance Silver was better known by his nickname Yancy Derringer, he was a gambler in old New Orleans. What was not generally known was that he was also a government agent during the Civil War. (See All that Glitters is not Gold: The Silvers). In the late 1890's long retired from government work, he married, to his family's shock and dismay, Clotel David. A notorious African-American author and speaker. In addition to being an avocate for African-American voting rights she was also a suffragette and advocate of women's rights. Yancy had been hired to guard her and they had surprisingly hit it off.

    Clotel David was the daughter of a African-American activist and missionary Topsy St. Claire and Jemal David. Topsy St. Claire was a former slave who jes grew into a leading voice for African-American rights. Her early childhood is seen in part in the volume Uncle Tom's Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe. Topsy was adopted by Miss Ophelia and carried on the tradition of religious and social advocacy. Jemal David's real name was James Douglas and he was the son of James Douglas of The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.
He could not accept his father's friendship with the ward of a slave holder and so left his family and changed his name. He became a bounty hunter and then a Wagonmaster, leading ex-slaves out west to start communities freed of racial strife. It was on one of these trips he met Topsy St. Claire. She tamed his wild nature.

    Part of their family history can be viewed at Hammer of Freedom-The Henrys

    Because of her parent's constant traveling, Eula Silver had been raised in part by nannies at their New Orleans home. The only relatives that would have anything to do with Yancy after he had taken up with the woman he had married were his cousins the Crosses. This may have been because Yancy had saved Jeremiah Cross' bacon quite a bit. The Crosses were somewhat renown as black sheep themselves. The Cross family was derived from Estevan de la Cruz, a charming con man who was also the maternal uncle of Diego de la Vega, aka El Zorro. Estevan had married Emma Silver, the daughter of John Silver, reputed to be something of pirate himself.

    Jeremiah Cross made a modest fortune in Louisiana and Texas Oil around the turn of the century. His son Noah would also branch out into cotton and tobacco. They Cross family was notorious for sharp practise and shady dealings and ties to the underworld. Noah Cross in particular was purported friends among the Black Hand, that proto-Mafia organization that flourished in the gay nineties in New Orleans.

    Noah Cross was about thirty-five years old in 1909. He was a well connected if not well liked business man and city official. His city job was actually a front for his control of the political machinery of the city. Noah Cross seduced his fifteen year old cousin, Eula, who was by all accounts a mature  and quite beautiful fifteen. He set her up as his mistress. Having a mistress was not an uncommon practice for a man of his stature in that time and place, that his dusky mistress was his cousin was unusual but he denied that relationship.

    When Eula became pregnant, Noah became furious. He kicked her out of her apartment and cut her loose without a penny. When she threatened to go to the press, he had her shut up in a bordello. As soon as the baby was born, he made certain that she earned her keep. Eula out of shame never returned to her home, her parents never knew what became of her. Yancy began an investigation that ended up with his death in an alley.

    Noah Cross left New Orlean shortly after that, relocating to California for more lucrative pasture. He however did not leave behind his predeliction for incest or his evil nature.

The Amazing Lanes Family Tree in graphic format

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The Amazing Lanes:an addendum was written for the sole purposes of entertainment and information. All rights reserved. The text of this article is © 2001 by the author, Dennis E. Power. No copying or reproduction of this article or any portions thereof in any form whatsoever is permitted without prior written permission and consent of the author.