Writing would bring Maud Hart and Delos Lovelace together, with a little help from a matchmaker. That matchmaker was Lillian Wakefield.
In 1915, Delos Lovelace began working as a reporter for his good friend Harry Wakefield, the city editor of the Minneapolis Tribune. The following year, Wakefield’s wife Lillian opened the Wakefield Publicity Bureau in Minneapolis. At some point Harry steered Delos to his wife’s office. In the spring of 1917, Delos left the publicity bureau to join the First Officer’s Training Camp at Fort Snelling.
When Lillian was charged with spearheading a fundraising effort she needed a writer, and she was introduced to Maud Hart. Maud recalled, “I went to see her and we liked each other very much. She told me to look through the collection of articles and materials to see the kind of thing they were doing. I remember coming across Delos’ name and saying, ‘Why, what name is this? It sounds like a valentine.’ Then I went on to read some of the things he had written, and I said, ‘My, he certainly writes well.’
In a 1974 interview with Jo Anne Ray, Maud told her, “Mrs. Wakefield was a great matchmaker, and she invited Delos, myself, and Helen [Maud’s sister] to dinner at her home – I think she invited Helen because she was young enough not to give any competition. Well, we had a lovely time Delos and I were seated across from each other and we kept eyeing each other. I remember we walked Helen home and then Delos and I walked and walked, around the lakes, and talked and talked – it was practically dawn before we reached my home. After that, whenever possible, Mrs. Wakefield would send me on assignments out to Fort Snelling,” where Delos was stationed.
This first meeting between Maud and Delos was in April 1917. They were married on November 29, 1917. When they wed, their combined names sounded even more “like a valentine”.
Maud dedicated Betsy’s Wedding to Lillian Hammons Wakefield, the matchmaker who brought her and Delos together. The fictional names Maud gave to the Wakefields were Bradford and Eleanor Hawthorne.