Divorce of Alfred Gwynne Vanderbilt

The article in attachment VanderbiltDivorce040208 published in the Indianapolis Star on April 24, 1908, reports on the pending divorce of Alfred Gwynne Vanderbilt and his wife Ellen French. Alfred was a motorsports enthusiast and owned race cars including the Fiat driver Paul Sartori drove in the first Vanderbilt Cup in 1904 and 1905.
Alfred's cousin, William K. Vanderbilt Jr. founded the Vanderbilt Cup and had a very respectable set of credentials racing cars in the United States and Europe. The article reports that Alfred left for Europe in the company of his sister, Consuelo, the Duchess of Marlborough. This is inaccurate in that the Duchess was his cousin, not his sister. She was actually Willie K's sister.
A few weeks after the article about a pending divorce the Indianapolis Star ran a story on May 18, 1908, about Mrs. Alfred Gwynne Vanderbilt's deep concern over her ailing dog and how she was sparing no expense in his medical care. This article is in attachment VanderbiltDog051808. I also include attachment VanderbiltActress070408 which insinuates that Alfred had an affair with actress Lena Ashwell. If such a thing occurred it was probably a dalliance from the perspective of both parties as Ashwell had recently gone through a divorce and may have been exploring her new-found freedom. The image indicates that she was extremely beautiful.
Another article, this one from the Indianapolis News dated August 26, 1909, continues the theme of Alfred's turbulent life. Apparently, Alfred was the topic of a practical joke that forced the expenditure of taxpayer money by mobilizing police and other public services. Someone telephoned the coroner's office to report that Vanderbilt had been shot twice at the Grand Union Hotel
Police were dispatched and the news media launched into action to scour the city searching for the breaking story. Vanderbilt had not visited the Grand Union. Part of the report indicated he had been taken to Bellevue Hospital so a mix of authorities, family, and friends rushed there. It was all for naught.
Vanderbilt was located the next day peacefully enjoying breakfast at the Hotel Plaza. No one can know if he was behind the prank or just that a buddy thought it would be amusing to play games with everyone else. Either way, the image of that entitled generation being irresponsible and out-of-touch was strengthened. 

VanderbiltDivorce040208.pdf613.24 KB
VanderbiltDog051808.pdf299.54 KB
VanderbiltActress070408.pdf236.89 KB
VanderbiltNews082609.pdf1.18 MB