The Press: The Payoff

To generations of newsmen in St. Louis, the squat, hustling figure of Sammy Bronstein was as familiar as their city editors —and sometimes more important. Sammy, peering sharp-eyed through thick glasses, regularly made the rounds of pressrooms and other reporters' hangouts, lending newsmen enough money—at high rates—to tide them over until payday. Last week Sammy Bronstein, 78, himself made news for his old customers by pulling off his greatest financial coup; for an investment of $3,600 made in bonds in the bankrupt Missouri Pacific Railroad 18 years ago, Bronstein got $970,000 in securities...

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