Monday, May 18, 1981 The Detroit News Page 3-B
Allen Nieber, reporter, editor
Michigan has been endowed with many outstanding newspapermen,
but few acted or looked like the role Hollywood created for them with
more commanding presence than Allen J. Nieber of The Detroit News.
Tall, tough-talking and ham-fisted at the typewriter, he wore
snap-brimmed hats and snapped out questions like a prosecutor
whether interviewing governors or escaped convicts. He intimidated
both sorts into honest answers, just as he would later first instill fear of
failure in cub reporters working for him – followed by a slavish devotion
to a boss who had done it all before them, usually better.
Born in Detroit in 1903 and educated at Central High School, Mr. Nieber
came to the News staff just after the start of Prohibition and for ten
years covered the often-bloody struggle for domination of Detroit’s
illegal liquor business. Much of this was centered in the downriver
suburbs of River Rouge and Ecorse, where his impartial reporting
gained him the respect of police and lawbreakers alike.
In fact, pick nearly any major story that occurred during the first three
decades of his career and chances are “By Allen J Nieber” appeared
on it. Such a reputation led to promotion, first to city editor in 1952 and
then assistant to the managing editor in 1962, six years before his
2016 Claudia N. Oltean All rights reserved.
Assistant to the Managing Editor,
The author's grandfather, Allen J. Nieber, is the inspiration for her first
fiction thriller, Another Chance to Die, historical fiction set in Detroit
during the tumultuous, danger-filled Prohibition years.
Another Chance to Die