Cabot, Miles. See the Radio Man entry.
Orhan ( I won't try for his last name, as I'm unable to completely duplicate
it; it has a tilde over the g, but I've been unable to find an ASCII character
that will duplicate that character) was created by the Turkish writer Murat
Akdogan (the g in his last name needs a tilde, too) and appeared in a series
of novels in Turkey in the late 1930s and early 1940s. Orhan Cakiroglu
was a policeman in Constantinople who worked the city streets and those
of its suburbs, solving nasty crimes in this pseudo-police procedural potboiler
Note: I've been unable to find more than a very little information in English on this character. If any of you out there have additional information, I'd love to hear it--Yr. Humble Site Master
Calhoun, Jack. Jack Calhoun was created by Edward Ware and appeared in Flynn's Weekly and Detective Fiction Weekly, running from 1926 to 1935. Calhoun is the "Chief Inspector" for the U.S. Rangers stationed in the "sunken lands" of northeastern Arkansas; although Calhoun's title often changes, his job never does. The sunken lands are full of "swamp rats," inbred scum who run alcohol, counterfeit, blackmail and commit murder, and it is Calhoun's job as a Ranger to stop them. This job is not an easy one; they are many, and native to the area, and he is only one. He manages it, however. He is skilled in the swamp, wears a pair of .45s, carries a rifle, and is described, by himself, as "hard-boiled without much conscience"--an over-harsh description, as he has more sentiment than that, but one not without some truth in it. It is fortunate that he is on the side of the law, because he would be a fearsome criminal. One group of thieves is taken in the night by Calhoun, who guns them down, one by one, one bullet per criminal, and then brings them back to the Rangers station. Others are gunned down in fair fights and not so fair, on muddy islands in the Mississippi and shanty shacks and hotel halls. Crazed outlaws like the Panther and the Jungle Butcher run amok until Calhoun kills them. Calhoun, finally, is a killer vigilante, a precursor to the Spider, though not nearly so psychotic.
Callaghan, Slim. See Lemmy Caution, below.
Calvo, Román. Roman Calvo was created by Alberto Edwards and appeared in Pacífico Magazine, a Chilean magazine, between 1912 and 1920. He was "el Sherlock Holmes chileno," the Chilean Sherlock Holmes and one of many Holmes "homages" to be published during those years. Calvo, like Holmes, was a recluse, believed that the Santiago police were backwards and dull (especially Federico Rios, Calvo's Lestrade), had a hard time finding cases that really interested him, had a Watson by the name of "Miguel de Fuenzalida" (also the pseudonym of Edwards himself), and was an expert in various fields (in Calvo's case genealogy and heraldry as well as the hard sciences). Calvo was also something of a dandy, being given to dressing very extravagantly. He was also a butterfly collector and as time went by increasingly devoted himself to historical investigations, rather than those which took place in the modern day. He has a wide range of interests, but unlike most Holmes types he never publishes, being content to stay in his apartment and do his research. For all of that, however, he was a good man and likeable despite his reclusive tendencies. Miguel de Fuenzalida, for his part, was Watsonian both in his role and in his personality, being ingenuous and faithful.
Campbell, Angus. Angus Campbell, along with his partner Patrick O'Rourke, was created by Max Brand and appeared in Detective Fiction Weekly in the late 1930s. Campbell and O'Rourke were New York City policemen and partners. They were also stereotypes of Scots and Irishmen, and the point of the series was not so much crime as for the readers to laugh at these silly Scots and Irishmen. Aren't ethnic stereotypes funny? Ho. Ho. Ho.
Campenhaye, Paul. Paul Campenhaye was created by J.S. Fletcher and appeared in a group of stories which were collected in Paul Campenhaye, Criminologist (1918). Campenhaye is an average detective whose opponents are often dangerous members of the upper class.
Camp Fire Girls. Not a group I know much about, I'm afraid; they were Stratemeyer Syndicate products (written under the name of "Hildegarde G. Frey") who did their bit helping Our Brave American Boys from the homefront. They were Sahwah and Migwan, among others, and they, as sixteen-year-old girls, did everything they could, romancing young pilots and trapping German spies.
Campfire Girls (I). The first set of Campfire Girls were created by Jane Stewart and appeared in the six book "Campfire Girls Series," which appeared in 1914 and began with A Campfire Girl's First Council Fire. The Girls were best friends Bessie and Zara, and they belonged to the "campfire girls" (a version of the Girl Scouts). Among their adventures were interacting with the Romany, foiling kidnapers, beating the boys at sports, showing up snooty city girls, and saving Zara's father from a counterfeiting charge.
Campfire Girls (II). The Campfire Girls were created by Julianne DeVries and appeared in the four book "Banner Campfire Girls Series," which ran from 1933 to 1935 and began with The Campfire Girls Flying Around The Globe. The Girls (haven't been able to find their names yet, sorry) fly around the world in a technologically-advanced airplane (provenance unknown to me, alas), fought crime (as "federal investigators," no less), and even met the President.
Campion, Albert. Albert Campion was created by Margery Allingham and appeared in at least two dozen novels and short story collections beginning with The Crime at Black Dudley. Campion is the child of an aristocratic family who began his literary career as "a lunatic...quite inoffensive...just a silly ass" and who claimed to be a con man and criminal for hire. As time went by he changed, becoming a detective and then possibly an agent of some kind for the government, especially during wartime.
A site on Allingham and her works, including Campion.
Candid Camera Kid. The Candid Camera Kid, sometimes known as Jerry Wade, appeared in Detective Novels from 1939 to 1945. Jerry Wade arrived in "the city" armed only with his camera and looking to get a job at a local newspaper. He is handed an impossible assignment and solves it with aplomb, getting both the job and the nickname "the Candid Camera Kid." Wade used his Kodak Bantam Special to take pictures of everything that came along; when what he sees has to do with crime, as it usually does, he solves it, and when the crooks come at him with fist and knife and gun, he turns into a "wildcat." He was a 26-year-old short, wiry red-head. The blonde and pretty Christine Stuart is the newspaper's crack reporter, and she teams up with Jerry on various cases and becomes his girlfriend. Wade is aided by Sergeant Orr of the local P.D., who values Wade's contributions.
Canevin, Gerald. Thanks to Rick Lai I can provide some information on Gerald Canevin. He was created by Henry Whitehead and appeared in a variety of pulps, including Weird Tales, Strange Tales, and Adventure in the early 1930s; a collection, Jumbee and Other Uncanny Tales, was published in 1944. Canevin is an American writer, scion of a Virginian family, who traveled across the Caribbean, encountering various weird and outré creatures and beings, many of which were voodoo- and Cthulhu-connected. As Rick Lai says,
Canevin is more often an observer like Arthur Machen�s Dyson rather than an occult investigator like Seabury Quinn�s Jules de Grandin. In some stories like �The People of Pan,� he only listens to the recounting of bizarre events that happen to others. Occasionally he does perform heroic acts such as beheading a ghost in �Mrs. Lorriquer,� exterminating a family of ghouls in �The Chadbourne Episode,� and fighting off Central American worshippers of an air elemental in �The Great Circle.�Rick also notes that "The Shut Room" has a direct crossover with the Carnacki the Ghost-Finder story "The Whistling Room."
The Captain, the Cook, and the Engineer. This trio, creator unknown (to me, at least), appeared in Pluck before the war. Captain Kelly, R.N.R. was �a very exceptional-looking man...enormously broad, if short, he was sun-tanned to a degree, also bearded, and he smoked incessantly long, fat, and strong cigars. His attire proclaimed his rank, for he was arrayed in a new and well fitting blue reefer suit, with gold bracelets on his sleeves to the number of four. The enormously powerful bulldog expression about his face was softened by a kindly light that twinkled in the sou�sou�west corner of his eyeballs.� Cookey Scrubs was a �middling little man of middling size...clothed in immaculate white ducks...he was by profession a ship�s cook. But no mention of his personality would be complete without a reference to an enormous ham-bone he carried, and which was his inseparable companion. The ham-bone was of enormous length, and its bald knuckle-end revealed that it had stood true and staunch in many a hard fought fray.� Donald was �a ship�s chief engineer. His reefers were designed more for comfort and use than outward show. He neither judged by appearances, nor cared for his own appearance. He smoked a short clay pipe, and the usual stolidity and rugged grit and good nature of the born and bred Scotsman characterised him.� In the words of Herbert Leckenby, �the stories were grand stuff, stirring adventure all over the world expertly flavored with dry, whimsical humour.�
Captain Blood. The infamous Captain Blood, scourge of the Spanish Main, was created by Rafael Sabatini and first appeared in Adventure in 1921 before being published in novels and put into movies. Blood was originally English, a doctor educated at Trinity College in Dublin. This being the 1670s, Blood has a desire to see beyond the horizon and takes to the sea. He serves with the Dutch under Admiral De Ruyter, learning seamanship and naval war, especially against the Spanish. Blood was captured by them and spent two years in prison. He returned to England in 1685 and was immediately embroiled in the Monmouth Rebellion. Blood made the mistake of treating a wounded gentleman on the wrong side and was arrested for a traitor. He was shipped to Barbados as a slave and bought by the Colonel of the Barbados Militia, though selected for purchase by Arabella, the Colonel�s daughter. Blood soon is ministering to the Colonel and his wife, all the while plotting escape. Then Spanish pirates arrive and attack the town. The authorities flee, leaving the Spanish to plunder the town. Blood takes advantage of the pirates� dull wits and gathers two dozen slaves. They take the Spanish ship, the Cinco Llagas, and kill the pirates when they return for it. From there Blood begins a very successful career as a pirate, always preying only on the Spanish. He acquires four more ships and a thousand men under him, all loyal. The Cinco Llagas is renamed the Arabella, after the love of his life. After several adventures, including a major defeat of a strong French fleet, he finally accepts an English commission to stop warring on the Spanish, marries Arabella, and becomes Deputy-Governor of Jamaica. (It�s all great fun, one of the classics of adventure fiction)
Author Rafael Sabatini
A very nice page on Sabatini and his works. Has links to e-texts of his work, including Captain Blood.
The complete e-text.
Captain Combat. Captain Combat appeared in an eponymous pulp in 1940. Captain William Combat is an American fighter pilot, and a good one. During the early days of World War Two he is assigned to the RAF (unofficially, of course, as the American government cannot officially be involved against the Germans). Combat gladly goes, as he hates the Germans; his mother was fatally wounded by machine gun fire from a German airplane that was pursuing them as they escaped from Berlin. He flies a Hawker Hurricane for the 42nd Home defense Squadron, and his arch-enemy is the German pilot Secret Agent 36.
Combat - The Sky Beast of Berlin
The cover of one of the novels
Captain Danger. Captain Danger, one of many air ace characters who appeared with the start of World War Two, was created by "Lt. Scott Morgan," the house name for F. E. Reichnitzer and Robert S. Brown. He appeared in Air War beginning in February 1940. He was an air ace and "air spy" who, in the words of one critic, "traveled far and wide, taking whatever assignments and missions came his way much to the regret of the Axis powers."
Captain Easy. It's not quite fair to include Captain Easy without his compatriot George Washington Tubbs II, but I can't do them both in the entry. Captain Easy was created by Roy Crane and appeared in Wash Tubbs, starting in 1924 and ending in 1983.
What you have to understand about Wash Tubbs is that it is one of the greatest comic strips of all time. In the words of one critic, "Wash Tubbs...should take its place as one of the heralds of the modern adventure strip, alongside the two other outstanding features that came out of that fateful year 1929, Tarzan and Buck Rogers." Much of the brilliance of Wash Tubbs is due to Roy Crane, the writer and artist of the strip. Crane's artwork is Art, make no mistake. It's brilliant, and the few images I've been able to find on the Web just don't do it justice.
George Washington Tubbs II is better known as "Wash Tubbs." He was a small teenager from a tiny Midwestern town who dreamed of wandering and of adventure while he clerked at a grocery store. Soon enough the wanderlust got too much for him, and he went looking for sunken treasure in the South Seas. As time passed and he grew up, he teemed up with Cozy Gallup, another young adventurer (though much cockier than down-to-earth Wash Tubbs), and they ranged across Africa, Mexico and North America looking for the big score. They meet any number of women, as well, many of whom are enamored of Wash Tubbs, none more so than Tango, the whip-wielding tiger tamer.
Things really pick up when, in the jails of the flyspeck Balkan kingdom of Candelabra, Wash Tubbs meets "Captain Easy," an adventurer of mysterious background. It turns out that he'd eloped with a superior officer's daughter while at West Point and been expelled from the Point for it. From there he became a mercenary, serving in Latin America, Europe, and Asia. He'd fought evil, overthrown tyrants, won wars, and helped peasants on every continent, in Cuba, China, India, and in various made up countries: the small banana republic of Costa Grande, in a region of the Himalayas unknown to white men and somewhat resembling Shangri-La, in the Balkan nations of Hitaxia, Kleptomania, Nikkateena and Woopsydasia. Easy had been everywhere and done everything.
Tubbs and Easy break out of the jail and go on a series of adventures which have lost none of their luster. Their longest trip was on board a whaler going from Holland to Alaska, where Easy helped Wash Tubbs beat Bull Dawson, a thick-necked bullying sea captain and long-time nemesis of Tubbs'. The pair had a wide range of exploits, but Wash Tubbs eventually found himself a nice, respectable girl and decided to get married and settled down. Captain Easy continued to swashbuckle his way across the world, but when World War Two began he returned to the U.S. and helped fight German and Japanese efforts in the U.S., catching spies and saboteurs and eventually, after Pearl Harbor, regaining his rank as Captain in the Army.
Easy & Wash Tubbs
An image of one of their Big-Little Books
This Boy's Dragon
An nice appreciation of Roy Crane and Milton Caniff, by Pete Hamill
Captain Future. One of the more memorable pulp characters, Captain Future was created by noted science fiction writer Edmond Hamilton. His first appearance was in Captain Future v1 #1 (Winter 1940) and his stories ran through Captain Future and Startling Stories until May 1951. Captain Future's adventures took place in the future--1990! Roger Newton, his wife Elaine, and Simon Wright have created much advanced science, but are threatened by the schemes of Victor Kaslan, who lusts for power. So the trio leave Earth to go to the Moon, where the three of them establish an advanced laboratory. In this lab, which is filled with technology beyond that of Earth, they create two artificial beings: Grag, a seven foot tall, superstrong robot, and Otho, an android who "looked only half human...its arms and legs had a rubbery, boneless look. Its artificially created flesh was not pink like human flesh, but pure, dead white. The white face had no eyebrows or eyelashes, and there was no hair whatever upon the well-shaped, pure white head." Unfortunately, Simon ("who had achieved fame in a half dozen different fields of science") is dying from an incurable disease, and Roger is forced to remove his brain and put it in a plastic box (look, it's the pulps, just accept it, okay?); the box (otherwise called a "serum-case") has a speaker through which Simon can communicate and artificial eyes with which he can see. (Eventually he got tractor beams so he could move around) Grag, Otho, and the Brain become known as the Futuremen.
Kaslan eventually catches up with Newton on the moon, unfortunately, and Roger and Elaine are killed. This leaves their infant son Curtis an orphan, but Grag, Otho and the Brain decide to raise him, which they do. He grows up to be Captain Future, a strapping six-foot-four, red-haired scientific genius with "space-bronzed" skin and two powerful fists. His lab is based beneath the Tycho crater on the moon, and Otho, Grag and the Brain are his steadfast companions and friends, although Otho and Grag are continually bickering with each other. He flies around the galaxy in his spherical rocketship and mobile lab The Comet, upholding the laws of the System Government and helping the Planet Police. One of their agents, Joan Randall, becomes a friend of the Futuremen and Captain Future's love interest.
He wears a blue "synthe-skin" zipper suit and uses, among other advanced weaponry, a "proton pistol" and "antigravity boots." His arch-enemy is the Magician of Mars, a Martian half-breed and the son of Victor Kaslan; he is almost as brilliant as Captain Future himself, and challenged Curtis in The Seven Space Stones and The Magician of Mars before finally being killed in The Solar Invasion. Cap travels in time as well, going back a hundred million years in one story and, in another, three billion years backwards, to save the natives of the planet Katain.
The best of the Captain Future sites, with plenty of information.
32 Captain Future links, most to German sites. (Who knew the good Captain was so popular in Germany?)
A decent site on him, with bibliographic information and some info on Captain Future.
A good site if you're looking for images and cover scans.
Captain Gardiner. Captain Gardiner was created by Allen Robert Dodd and appeared in Captain Gardiner of the International Police (1916). In the far flung year of 1975 ("sixty years after the last and most terrible European war") Captain Gardiner, a squarejawed two-fisted Slab Thunkchest type, is the best agent that the International Police have. The world is ruled by the International Federation, you see, which some decades ago dissolved all nations (there was an imminent threat of a world war) and put them under the Federation's rule. The International Police are the enforcement arm of the Federation. Unfortunately, there is no war or threat of war to be seen, and various groups are agitating to reduce the International Police's power or (no!) dissolve it all together. Fortunately for Gardiner, there's always the threat of the "Orientals" to keep him busy. Gardiner and his superior and sidekick Major Wilkie are sent on an ultra secret mission to Peking; the Chinese and the Japanese have been plotting war against the white world (payback for the Opium Wars, no doubt), and Gardiner's job is to steal the plans. Wilkie and Gardiner go to Wu, the last descendant of the Manchu emperors, who had promised to sell the pair the plans, but wouldn't you know it, Wu double crosses them! (Just like them demmed Yellow Peril types!) Wilkie and Gardiner are trapped, with no possible way out. So Wilkie commits suicide after instructing Gardiner to hide the plans (Wu had given the pair the plans before plunging them into a pit) inside his stomach after he's dead. Unfortunately, Gardiner is then put to the Question and tells all. Another agent is forced to retrieve the plans, and as the International Federation declares war on the "Orientals" Gardiner is released by Wu and resigns from the International Police. The Federation wins, in large part due to the work of "Lt. Col. Smith," (Gardiner in disguise), who is a great help to the Federation both on the front lines and from headquarters. Gardiner eventually lives down his failure and is absolved by the Federation, which restores him to his former position.
Captain Hazzard. Created by "Chester Hawks," aka Paul Chadwick, and debuting in Captain Hazzard #1, May 1938, Captain (no first name) Hazzard, a rather pale Doc Savage imitation, is a master of technology and advanced science, as well as being an "ace adventurer, conqueror of fear, and master of modern science." Armed with his telepathy and a number of Monk & Long Tom-like aides, including "Crawley" and "Randall," he fought against a volcano-using madman in his only appearance, "Python Men of the Lost City."
Oh, alright, more information. He loses his sight as a child, and to compensate he developed his other senses to the human peak. He also developed limited telepathy, being ability to project his thoughts across long distances. An operation restores his eyesight, and Hazzard is inspired to use his new good fortune to help others. He sets up a laboratory on Long Island and acquires a group of sidekicks and operatives, the bald mathematician Washington MacGowan, the cowboy Jake Cole, and the aforementioned Crawley and Randall.
Captain Hazzard - Python Men of the Lost City
A rewritten and edited version of Cap's debut.
Captain Justice. Captain Justice was created by Murray Roberts and appeared in Modern Boy and Boys Friend Library beginning with "Captain Justice--Modern Pirate" in the November 1930 issue of Modern Boy. Justice sounds interesting; I wish some of his stories were easily available to read. Jack Adrian described him as "a cross between Cutcliffe Hyne's Captain Kettle and Sidney Drew's Ferrers Lord," and, indeed, his is quite visibly similar to Captain Kettle, enough so that one would be forgiven for suspecting a familial relation. Captain Justice is the "Sea Rover," a "modern pirate," as mentioned, an "adventurer of the highest order" whose home base, a technological wonder (it had two-way television in it), was a mile-high fortress, Titanic Tower, floating somewhere in the Atlantic. He used an invisible airship to take him and his friends, Midge the red-headed boy assistant (think Sexton Blake's Tinker and Nelson Lee's Nipper) and Professor Flaznagel, around the world, from hidden cities to the depths of the Sahara, and to fight evil and wrong-doers wherever he found them. This often entailed, for example, confronting evil Sheiks who used armies of giant spiders, or going to Lost Worlds and fighting "hordes of prehistoric monsters," or saving the Earth from alien invasions, or stopping renegade Americans and evil Sheikhs from conquering the world. There were drowned worlds coming to the surface, and technologically advanced Lost World natives in the Amazon threatening to invade the outer world, and Cap took them on. There were the evil androids of "Robot City," and the ill-inclined inhabitants of a Lost World in India, and even the "Weed Men" from the Sargasso Sea, and Cap took them on, too. There were boy Rajahs from places like Bhuristan, who of course needed restoring to their rightful thrones, stolen from them by evil viziers, and Cap helped them. There were monster robots on South Seas islands and lost civilizations beyond the Arctic ice and dinosaurs in volcano-heated lands beyond the Antarctic ice. There was the "Wolf of Kabul," the Afghan/Russian Kolensky, whose heart's aim was to bring down Britain and the British Empire.
There were metal cubes with unnatural powers, the product of Thunder Mountain, a source of "priceless electric ore." There were cannibals and pygmies in unexplored Africa. There were Kiang-Ho duplicates named Yong Huey who made the mistake of kidnaping Professor Flaznagel. There were would-be conquerors like Marcus the Mysterious, who planned on becoming the "Emperor of Earth." There were invasions from the sea, by aquatic creatures, from fish-humanoids to giant crabs. There were invasions from space, as when Professor Flaznagel's magnetic ray attracted the unwelcome attentions of the inhabitants of the planet Nuvius, who brought not only themselves but their entire planet to attack Earth. There was the Black Napoleon of Science City, out to conquer the world. (The Science City, see, was this city of advanced workshops, power houses, and laboratories, ringed by a huge stone wall and a maze of death traps, built by captive white scientists in the middle of a vast, isolated forest, and the scientists managed to get an SOS out to Captain Justice to free them. Justice finds the Science City, somewhere in the depths of the Amazon, and finds that the native (black) Ambani people, with their advanced technology and robot slavers, were behind the slavery.) There were the Tiger Priests of the Hidden Land. There were giant robots from the floor of the ocean who emerged to stomp on everything in their sight, from shipping to Captain Justice's tower. There was Garth Leopold, with his remote-controlled robot who was a threat to the world's shipping. There were men who tried and even briefly succeeded in taking over Captain Justice's tower. There was even an earthquake which brought down Titanic Tower, trapping Captain Justice, Midge, and Prof. Flaznagel in it; Captain Justice eventually recovers his secrets and wondertech from the ruins of the Tower and creates a floating skyscraper city in the Atlantic as his new base. And, inevitably, there were the evil High Lamas of Tibet. It was all great fun, and inspired no less than Brian Aldiss to write science fiction.
Captain Midnight. While Captain Midnight is today most remembered as a comic book character, he began life (what an odd thing to say about a fictional character. Sometimes I look at the stuff I write and just shake my head) as the main character of a radio program (created by Robert M. Burtt and Willfred G. Moore) on WGN out of Chicago in 1938, making it into the comics in 1941 and comic strips in 1942. Captain Midnight was actually "heavily influenced" by Don Winslow, something not many people remember. Captain Midnight was actually Captain Red Albright, who had gained his nickname for his nocturnal actions as an Army Captain during World War One. During World War Two Captain Midnight led his Secret Squadron ("hardy, adventuresome fellows who laughed at danger") against the worst the Germans and Japanese had to offer. Captain Midnight was under the command of Major Berry Steel and was aided by mechanic Ichabod "Ikky" M. Mudd and the junior members of the Secret Squadron, Joyce Ryan and Chuck Ramsey, Midnight's teenage wards. The Secret Squadron was managed by Steel, Midnight's pal from WW1, and the Squadron had a government sanction to do what they liked. Midnight led various independent missions, shooting down enemy plans, fighting the Axis' worst villains, the Japanese Barracuda and the Russian (or perhaps Eurasian--this changed as time went by and WW2 began) Ivan Shark (and Fury Shark, his beautiful daughter), and carrying out clandestine missions behind enemy lines. He also had various encounters with Luna White, the "Moon Woman," an Allied agent and mysterious, sultry woman who never quite got romantically involved with Midnight.
A good site for the radio show
Captain Midnight History
A good short history of the character and radio show.
Captain Satan. The memorably named Captain Satan began life in 1938. Caray Adair, a criminal trying to reform, leads a band of gangsters (Doc, Happy, Frenchie, Soapy, Big Bill, and Gentlemen Dan) in a war against crime. He robs from the crime lords and redistributes the wealth to the poor and needy. In his guise as Captain Satan he pretends to be superhuman, and he uses the devil symbol on his chest in much the same way that the Spider did, to frighten criminals. He also leaves behind projects a devil symbol (by taping a cut-out devil figure onto a flashlight lens) to scare crooks.
Captain Strange. Captain Strange appeared in Boys' Herald in 1903, his creator unknown. He was a proper upright British patriot, and so when the demmed Frenchies decided to declare war on the U.K., Strange swings into action. He is, of course, an inventor, having conceived of a wonderful steam-powered claw which he placed on the back of his yacht, and when the French mini-subs attempt to maneuver their way through the British minefields he uses the claw to pluck them from the water and drag or tow them into port. However, after a successful series of attacks by the French on Gibraltar, Strange is horrified; M. Santon Dumas, you see, had announced that he would be putting his "aerial flying machine" at the service of the French government, and Strange realizes that the destruction of Gibraltar and of the British fleet was the fault of Dumas' airship. In the end the zeppelin-like airship is destroyed, having flown too low and into the grasp of the claw of Strange's ship, and England wins the war with France.
William N. Elison interestingly notes that
In your entry on Captain Strange, you mention the villainous French aviation pioneer, M. Santon-Dumas. This dude's name is clearly based on that of an actual guy, the real-life Brazilian-French aviator Alberto Santos-Dumont, whose exploits were well known by 1903 and sufficiently advanced scientifically that in Brazil, anyway, he's regarded as the inventor of powered flight.Captain V. One of the better air ace pulp heroes, Captain V was created by Ralph Oppenheim appeared in seven memorable stories in Battle Birds Magazine from 1942 to 1943. Captain V had been a minor attaché at the Berlin Embassy before the War. However, the Gestapo decided that he knew too much, so they arranged for a plane crash to kill him. Captain V was declared dead, but he was only mutilated, and American Intelligence surgeons rebuilt his face so that it was handsome but dead and unmoving. He trained and became a top ace, and returned to warfront duty as the mysterious �Captain V.� He worked closely with British Intelligence and formed his own air wing, the V Aces. They had their own underground hangar and their own "Bell P-39 Airacorbras."
Captain Yank. Captain Yank was created by Frank Tinsley and ran from October 1940 through the end of 1945. Captain Yank was actually Doodle, a famous test pilot and airplane engineer. Flying his specially-designed plane, the Bat ("a strange fighting plane, tailless and shaped like an arrowhead"), and with the help of Daniel Boone, direct descendant of the more famous Boone, and of Captain Algernon Marmaduke Jeeps of the U.S.A.F. (a black "A-1 pilot and master mechanic" who, alas, served as Yank's valet), Doodle spent 1940-1942 fighting spies, saboteurs and traitors on the homefront, including the dreaded spy group the Black Column. In mid-1942 a change of ownership led to a change of character. Doodle was now a Captain of the U.S. Marine Corps led a specially trained group of flying commandos behind enemy lines in the Pacific heater.
Caradosso, Luigi. Luigi Caradossa was created by F.R. Buckley and appeared in Adventure from 1924 through 1953. Caradossa, a foundling of humble origin, is a free-lance soldier and captain of men in Italy from around 1520 to 1580. For thirty years Caradossa served the Dukes of Rometia, eventually being pensioned off. As a youth he was a big, agile man, touchy in his honor and often vengeful, although he sees himself as a man of peace. (This, despite having 37 scars, 12 on his face, and missing a little finger and the top of his right ear) He was a very capable fighter, especially good with swords; he was the creator of the colpo di Caradosso, a thrust that seemed aimed at the stomach but sliced the artery just under the right ear. For the Dukes he fought duels, stormed seemingly-impregnable castles, and such-like tasks that a Renaissance Italian condottieri would be required to carry out.
Carberry, Jane. Jane Carberry was created by Beryl Simmons and appeared in five novels, beginning with Jane Carberry, Detective (1940). Jane was a society woman of a certain age, solving crimes among the active set.
Cardiff, Tom. Tom Cardiff was created by Howard R. Garis (here he is again) and appeared in the two-book "Tom Cardiff Series," which began in 1926 with Tom Cardiff's Circus and ended the next year with Tom Cardiff in the Big Top. I'm not going to go into any detail, since this involves the circus and clowns, and we all know how evil they are. Let's just say that Tom solves mysteries, has fun at the circus, and finds the remains of the Cardiff Giant.
Cardigan. Cardigan was created by Frederick Nebel and appeared in Dime Detective starting with "Death Alley" in November 1931 and running through 1937. Cardigan was a smart and very hard operative of the Cosmos Detective Agency, a hard man in a bad world. He was, in the words of one critic, �rude, restless, streetwise, and shrewd. It was his steadfast policy not to take any crap from anybody, no matter which side of the law that person was on.� He was not a neat dresser, most often being rumpled or even wearing clothes that he has slept in. He drinks too much. And he was not stunningly intelligent. But he was persistent, tough (very tough), good with his guns, and a complete professional.
Cardigan was a partner of the Cosmos Agency, working in its many offices, from New England to San Francisco and many points between. He was assisted by Pat Seaward, an attractive and capable operative for the Cosmos Agency with whom he carried on an interesting (thought never consummated) flirtation.
Yet another of Michael Grost's well-done essays.
Carlier, Inspector. Inspector Carlier was created by the Dutch author H. van der Kallen under the pseudonym of "Havank" and appeared in a number of novels, beginning in 1935 with Het mysterie van St. Eustache. Carlier, an inspector with the Parisian police, was also known as De Schaduw, or "The Shadow."
Carlton, Linda. Linda Carlton was created by Edith Lavell and appeared in the five-book "Linda Carlton" series, which began in 1931 with Linda Carlton, Air Pilot. As you might guess, Linda was a pilot and her adventures were all aviation-related, taking her from California to Hawaii to the South Pacific.
Carlyle, Gerry. Gerry Carlyle was created by Arthur K. Barnes and appeared in a series of stories in Thrilling Wonder Stories from 1937-1946, several of which were collected in Interplanetary Hunter (1956). Gerry Carlyle is the beautiful and fabulous galactic big game hunter, a sort of Frank Buck Rogers, who works for the London Interplanetary Zoo, capturing dangerous alien beasts on far distant and often dangerous alien worlds, and bringing the BEMs back to the Zoo. In this Gerry is assisted by her bold and rather clever sidekick Tommy Strike, with whom Gerry has a love/hate relationship.
Carse, Hawk. Hawk Carse was created by Harry Bates and Desmond Hall under the pseudonym of "Anthony Gilmore" and appeared in Astounding Stories beginning with "Hawk Carse" in Astounding's November 1931 issue. Quoting E.F. Bleiler's Science Fiction: The Gernsback Years:
The Hawk Carse stories, which are dated vaguely as in the period A.D. 2117-2148, are for all practical purposes traditional pulp Western stories transplanted into space, with the addition of an Oriental villain in the mode of Sax Rohmer's Dr. Fu-Manchu. While stories by other authors have approached this same aesthetic, the Hawk Carse series is a typological extreme. Hawk Carse, "the greatest adventurer in space," "he of the spitting ray gun and the phenomenal draw," guns down his enemies; these are outlaws who are the equivalent of cattle rustlers or minions of an Oriental fiend. Carse is so fast and so accurate with either hand that he permits his enemies, in face-to-face duels, to draw their weapons before he shoots neat holes in their foreheads. Four- and five-to-one odds are nothing to the Hawk. In this expertise the Hawk excels his cowboy prototypes. Carse is cold, icy, and passionless, except for anger when harassed by badmen. For his trusty steed the Hawk has the Star Devil, the fastest ship in space, designed by his friend and associate Master Scientist Eliot Leithgow. And for a faithful companion, the Hawk has the giant black man Friday, whom Carse's foes refer to as a nig or nigger. The Hawk's ultimate purpose is revenge for an injury done to him in the past, a wound that necessitates his wearing his hair in bangs over his forehead. The Hawk is also greatly concerned to clear the name of his friend Leithgow, who has been framed for a crime. The Hawk's counterbalance and relentless foe is the diabolic Eurasian scientific genius Ku Sui. A monster of evil, he is the overlord of gangs of space pirates and similar criminals. He is the master of strange knowledges and tortures, and only the Hawk can stand against him.Carmichael, Dr. Michael. Dr. Michael Carmichael was created by John Laurence and appeared in Flynn's in 1925. Carmichael is a doctor and a professor of criminology at "Central University." Carmichael is "one of the most brilliant scientists and reasoners of his time," although his stories don't quite bear this up. He's a tennis player and the "Official Expert Adviser to Scotland Yard," but more details are not given about his personal life. He's got keen powers of observation (but of course) and lightly bestows his clues and words upon the police and reader. Carmichael takes on conspiracies involving Russians, cocaine addicts, and so on. He's not very interesting.
Carnacki, Thomas. Thomas Carnacki, one of the earliest and best of the occult detectives, was created by William Hope Hodgson (1875-1918), an author who was greatly influential on modern horror fiction, especially his immortal The House on the Borderland. Carnacki debuted in "The Gateway of the Monster" in the January 1910 issue of The Idler and appeared in eight more stories. Carnacki was a "Psychic Investigator," someone who, like Dr. John Silence, was called in to investigate psychic and or occult phenomena. Carnacki, though, uses far more scientific equipment than Silence ever did; Carnacki was working from the Dr. Thorndyke tradition of the scientific detective, but verging towards the occult. (Carnacki also used the traditional equipment of the occultist) In the Carnacki stories the world is full of evil psychic forces, the "Outer Monsters," and these sometimes break through into our reality to threaten humans. Although he is doubtful about the occult--"all hauntings (are) unproven until he has examined them"--over half of the stories in which he appears involve the supernatural and/or psychic. Carnacki always begins by testing for real-world causes of the seemingly supernatural horrors; when his days-long investigation does not reveal anything, he then moves on to checking the occult. Carnacki uses such things as pentacles, standard magical equipment like candles, ribbons, and the like, and the Sigsand Manuscript, a 14th century document of great occult insight and worth.
The stories are usually told by Carnacki himself, relayed to his friends Jessop, Arkright, Taylor and Dodgson, at Carnacki's home at 472 Cheyne Walk in "Chelsa."
The Carnacki Cylinders
The zipped version of "The Carnacki Cylinders," a roleplaying game based on the Carnacki stories.
Ghost Finder (1910)
Five stories from Carnacki the Ghost Finder e-text
Typical insight on Hodgson and Carnacki from Michael Grost
Hope Hodgson's Occult Detective "Carnacki"
An interesting, medium-length essay on the Carnacki stories
Carner, Mary. Mary Carner was created by Zelda Popkin and appeared in five novels, beginning with Death Wears a White Gardenia (1938). Mary Carner Whittaker (she usually dropped her ex-husband's name) was a floor detective for Blanchard's Department Store, inevitably finding murder on the job.
Carr, Alan. Alan Carr was created by Percy Westerman and appeared in five books, beginning with His Unfinished Voyage (1937) and ending with Alan Carr in Command (1945). Alan Carr is with the British Merchant Navy; he works his way up from Cadet to Captain, fighting against U-boats, psychotic Brazilians (in Rio), and hurricanes, sailing the seas from the North to the Pacific.
Carr, Johnny. Johnny Carr, sometimes called "Johnny Cass," was created by Roger Torrey and appeared in Dime Detective starting in 1935. Carr is a tough, cynical, wise-crackingtmprivate eye who was a bit more violent than the norm and whose stories are told in the present tense.
Carrados, Max. Max Carrados was created by Ernest Bramah and appeared in a number of short stories and one novel, beginning with Max Carrados (1914). Carrados was the first blind detective, and a man capable of such feats that it's entirely possible that Stan Lee, creator of the comic book superhero Daredevil, had read some of the Carrados stories somewhere along the line. When Carrados was a young man he developed amaurosis as the result of an accident; this blinded him, although his eyes remained the same. In reaction to this, "so far from crippling his interests in life or his energies, it has merely impelled him to develop those senses unused. Thus you will understand that while he may be at a disadvantage while you are at an advantage, he is at an advantage while you are at a disadvantage." His other senses were heightened, almost to a supernatural degree, and he uses them to become a detective. He is capable of Holmes-like deductions about those around him, can read newspaper headlines with the touch of a fingers, can recognize a friend he has not seen in over twenty years simply by the sound of his voice, can smell a false mustache, and on at least one occasion out-shot a man. He can even sense good and bad "emanations." Carrados is a good private investigator, even without his senses, and he uses both his intelligence and his own sense of justice to help the preyed-upon. He is assisted by Parkinson, his faithful and observant, if none-too-bright ("a greater depth of mental vacuity than was humanly credible") personal attendant.
A good, entertaining essay on Bramah.
The Coin of
The Ghost at
More Carrados e-texts.
Carring, Leo. Leo Carring was created by the Swedish writers S.A. Duse and J. Regis and appeared in ten novels, beginning with Stilettkäppen (�The Stiletto Cane�) in 1913. Carring, headquartered in Stockholm but active around Europe, was a consulting detective and Sherlock Holmes clone, so much so that, in proper Holmesian style, he criticised the competition�in this case, Holmes himself. (In Stilettkäppen Carring faults Holmes for the sloppy handling of evidence and for his undeserved luck.) The critic Bo Lundin described Carring as a �superhuman bully, lawyer, and master detective,� and Carring Lundin does anticipate Bulldog Drummond in several respects, not least his unconcern for legal niceties (in one story he lets a murderess escape because of the victim�s unpleasantness) and his anti-Semitism (in another story Carring is quite happy to allow the murders of seven Jewish Bolsheviks). Lundin goes on to describe Carring this way:
Duse and his Carring represent many of the most unpleasant traits of the well-to-do bourgeoisie of that day: a self-satisfied pomposity, sublime inability to make note of any but social equals, knowledge limited to obscure subjects, and conversation with the sole aim to put down others and prove one�s superiority.Lundin further notes that Agatha Christie�s authorial trick, in The Murder of Roger Ackroyd (1926), was anticipated by Duse in 1918 in Dr. Smirnos Dagbok (Dr. Smirno�s Diary). Lundin concludes with this description of Carring: �an omniscient, though taciturn, detective, who would sooner let an extra person or two from the lower classes get murdered than express himself hastily.�
Carson, Curlie. Curlie Carson was created by Roy J. Snell and appeared in the eight-book "Radio-Phone Boys" series, which began in 1922 with Curlie Carson Listens In. Curlie was part of the Radio-Phone Boys, who solved crimes across the Western part of the U.S., from the deserts of Arizona to the Yukon, with the help of that wonder tool, the radio-phone.
Carter, Ken. Ken Carter was created by Norvell Page and appeared in Ten Detective Aces starting in 1934. He was a tall, thin man who'd formerly been a professional juggler before entering the private eye game, in which he was successful and became wealthy. His stories tended to the bizarre; there'd be dead men dangling from parachutes, bodies turned blue or into stone, music that killed, curses involving "Satan's hoof," and so on. Carter had a "lithe, long body" (of course) and "pale blue eyes." He is not nationally known, but in the Northeast he is known and feared. He has a long record of killing, although of course, as he says, "When I have killed, it has been to save my own life. And those I killed already had taken human life."
Although it's not fair to hang Norvell Page for the sins of his generation or to expect him to be a better man than many of his time, it still must be said that the depiction of blacks in the Carter stories doesn't just come close to racism, it seems to embrace it.
Carter, Nick. See The Nick Carter Page.
Carver, Norman. Norman Carver was created by Clarence Burleigh and appeared in the "Norman Carver Series," which ran from 1908-1910, beginning with All Among the Loggers, or, Norman Carver's Winter in a Lumber Camp. Carver and his best pal (haven't been able to find his name yet, sorry) found mysteries and adventure in the North Woods, among lumber camps and the wilderness of Maine and New England.
Casey, Flashgun. Flashgun Casey was created by George Harmon Coxe and appeared in Black Mask from 1934 to 1943, with films, radio shows, and comic books variously following. Jack "Flashgun" Casey, a WW1 vet with the AEF, was a photographer for the Boston Globe, but after a fight with his bosses was hired by the rival Express. While working for the Express he finds that his photographs often lead him into trouble, usually involving murder investigations. He solves them, naturally, while also scooping his rivals. He's tall and brawny, with a quick temper. He is assisted by Tom Wade, his friend from the Globe who followed him to the Express. His police contact was Lt. Logan and Sergeant Manahan. He also spends time with Ann Williams, his reporter girlfriend, and chats with the bartender Ethelbert in his favorite bar, the Blue Note. During the war Casey, who is ineligible for active duty because of his age and a bad knee (injured by a bootlegger's bullet), solves murders on the homefront and teaches a class in "defense photography."
Cashin, Carrie.Cashin Carrie was created by Theodore Tinsley and appeared in Crime Busters from 1937 to 1942. She was the senior partner in the Cash and Carry Detective Agency, partnered with "her stooge" Aleck Burton. Although Aleck was neither as bright nor as brave as Carrie, Aleck nonetheless pretended to be the head of the Agency, so that clients with a suspicion against women detectives would be willing to hire the Agency. (This was Carrie's idea) The fact was that while Aleck was broad-shouldered and handsome, it was Carrie who solved the cases and brought home the money. Carrie was smart, pretty, and brave, although, in the words of one critic, "she favored a system of detection that put much of the emphasis on physical fitness."
The entertaining entry on her from the Thrilling Detective site
Catalyst Club. The Club was created by George Dyer and appeared in six novels, beginning with The Five Fragments (1932). The Club were a group of like-minded scientists, each a specialist in a different area, who applied their individual skills towards solving crimes.
Catfitz, Archibald. Written by C.S. Montayne and appearing in Top Notch starting with �The Dishless Dish� in the May 1, 1919 issue, Archibald Catfitz, like Mr. Hawkins, was one of the best examples of humorous inventors in the pre-War literature. Catfitz is brilliant, but in a highly impractical and scattershot way. He is capable of inventing things like the �Iceless Icebox,� the �Coalless Stove,� and the �Dishless Dish,� but there are flaws in every invention, and every one of his efforts comes to nothing. His dishless dishes are made from a clay batter that makes wonderful synthetic porcelain, but the resulting dishes are not waterproof. His mimeograph reproduces color paintings, but the colors run when the paintings are set vertically. And so on. Catfitz is accompanied by his friend, Major Hoople, and his long-suffering boarding house roommate, Bill, who has to listen to Catfitz�s schemes and be the subject of endless sponging by Catfitz. Catfitz eventually gives up inventing and takes to salesmanship.
Caution, Lemmy. Lemmy Caution was created by Reginald Evelyn Peter Southouse Cheyney and--no, he was not created by Godard--and first appeared in--shut up, it was not Alphaville--in Dames Don't Care (1938). Yes, this is the same Lemmy Caution who was the "star" of Alphaville, only the original Caution, not the futuristic Caution. The original is an English detective who with his partner Slim Callaghan operates in London's West End. Lemmy and Slim are cruel but effective; the milieu in which they operate, the desperate clubs, brothels, and dives of the West End seem to bring out the worst and most violent in the pair.
Caverly, Tim. Tim Caverly was created by Joseph O�Donnell and Wyndham Gittens and appeared in Ghost Patrol (1936). Caverly is a government agent, equally at home in the saddle or at the controls of a plane, who is hired to find out why so many mail-carrying planes have been crashing in the Shiloh Mountains. He discovers that Professor Jotham Brent (Jotham?) had invented a �radium tube� which halts the operation of internal combustion engines, and (Jotham??) that bad guys Dawson and Kincaid had been holding him hostage and using his invention to bring the mail planes down and loot the wreckage. Good (Jotham???) triumphs, though�not to worry.
Cawthorne, Fred. Fred Cawthorne was created by George Stratton and appeared in Electrical Experimenter from 1915 to 1916. Cawthorne is a millionaire inventor and manufacturer who is the only clear-headed one among the many other manufacturers and government figures, so that when the "Oriental powers" are threatening America, Cawthorne is the only one to really do anything about it. (Yes, the stories are as racist as the premise sounds) When the "Japo-China" fleet threatens San Francisco, Cawthorne creates a submarine with electromagnetic clamps and ether-cannon. When Mexico allies with Japan and invades America, he uses an airplane with a gravity nullifier to stop the enemy troops. Cawthorne destroys an enemy fleet with an electron ray. And when, near the end of the invasion, a Mexican bandit chief bothers the American forces, Cawthorne uses a "electromatograph," which can visualize on individuals from far away, to track the bandit down.
Challenger, Professor. Professor Challenger was created by A.Conan Doyle and appeared in The Lost World (1912), The Poison Belt (1913), The Land of Mist (1926), The Disintegration Machine (1928), and When the World Screamed (1929). Challenger is a short, conceited, pugnacious genius, scientist, and adventurer who�s really quite insufferable. The worst part is that he�s usually right. Whether adventuring in the Roraima plateau, and discovering dinosaurs there or preparing for a wave of �poisonous ether� to sweep across the Earth, it�s best to listen to Challenger and do as he says.
Chan, Charlie. Charlie Chan was created by Earl Derr Biggers and debuted in The House Without a Key (1925), appearing in many more sequels and movies. Chan works for the Honolulu Police Department, first as a detective sergeant and then later as an inspector. He's Chinese-Hawaiian, living on Punchbowl Hill with his wife and 11 children. He's rather genial, but this pleasant nature, broken English, and fondness for quoting aphorisms and maxims conceals a good mind. He's very intelligent and wise, well-educated, and a damn good investigator--so good, in fact, that he's often called upon to solve crimes in other parts of the world outside of Hawaii. He is assisted by his sons, who do the strongarm and legwork for him; their names are "Number One Son," "Number Two Son," and so on.
Charlie Chan Page
The best Charlie Chan site on the 'Net.
Another good Chan site. (That's two more good sites than many worthy characters have)
Chance, Peter. Peter Chance was created (I think) by John Hickling and appeared in �The Adventures of Peter Chance,� an Australian radio show broadcast in the early 1940s. Peter Chance was a two-fisted private eye.
Chandu the Magician. Chandu was created by Harry Earnshaw, Vera Oldham, and R.R. organ, and debuted on "Chandu the Magician," an eponymous radio show, in 1932. The show ran through 1936, Chandu having gone on to star in movie serials during that time. He returned to the radio in 1949. "Chandu" is actually Dr. Frank Chandler, a secret agent for the American government who went to Tibet and then India and stayed there for three years, learning hypnosis and the various (mystic, occult, and undefined--usually whatever is required by the plot, although he had a sort of clairvoyance via a crystal ball and it was established that his "magic" was "impotent in the face of blind fear") "arts of the yogi" from a yogi, and then returned back home to continue the war on crime and evil. He takes on enemies as various as common crooks and saboteurs, Roxor (a mad scientist with a death ray), and ancient Lemurian cultists. The first story arc involved Chandu's search for Robert Regent, the husband of Chandu's sister Dorothy. Regent had been supposed to have died in a shipwreck a decade previously, but Chandu, through his "occult powers," had learned that Robert might still be alive, a prisoner of Roxor. Chandu went off to Egypt with Dorothy, where they eventually freed Robert after various adventures, including Chandu's romance with Nadji, an Egyptian "princess." From there they went to "Monrovia," Algiers, a Romany camp in "Montabania," and Lemuria.
Chandu the Magician
An image from a Big Little Book, Chandu the Magician
A summary of the characters and plot from the "Chandu the Magician" serial.
Mr. Chang. The wonderful Mr. Chang, who was created by A.E. Apple, appeared in around 33 stories running through Detective Story from 1919 to 1931, and in two collections, Mr. Chang of Scotland Yard (1926) and Mr. Chang's Crime Ray (1928). Apple was a detective writer about whom little information is available. Chang is another in the Fu Manchu mode, an "Oriental" mastermind of no morals and great genius. However, Mr. Chang differs from similar characters, like Fu Manchu and like Li Shoon, in that he has no aspirations beyond the assembling of wealth. To these ends he's willing to do just about anything, murder being a mere inconvenience. He is portrayed as being utterly ruthless; in his own words, "I have no scruples. I am a criminal without a single redeeming virtue." In the classical Greek sense he does have one virtue, however: areté, the quality of excellence detached from ethics. Mr. Chang is very, very good at being Mr. Chang. He is unable to be flustered, regardless of circumstance. He is completely devoted to building wealth through criminal means. ("He devoted his energies and talents to it as effectively as if...to an honest calling.") Temporary lulls in fortune or losses of money, even down to having only pocket change, do not bother him. He has become the top of his profession: the "archmurderer of the century." He is a legend of terror in China, and is wanted in every country and in every state in America. Chang murders, blackmails, drugs (his yellow-bark brandy removes morals from its victims), survives capture and sure death a dozen times, endures torture and imprisonment of three years, survives a trip to Hell (in which he stole everything not nailed down) and a resurrection, and continues to steal, steal, steal, an "emperor of crime" to the last.
Chang is originally of Chinese descent. His father was a "prince," a "mandarin of the first class." Unfortunately, Chang was a brilliant rotter, committing his first murder at age nine, and after years of "spectacular crime" his family connections could no longer shield him. He was forced to flee China, a step ahead of the police, and he made it to the Philippines with only the ruby buttons he'd cut from his father's robe. From this lowly start, as a "wild man from Luzon with a wagon show," he made it up to controlling a great criminal empire. His strength is on occasion superhuman, and he's a strong fighter.
Chantecoq. Thanks to Marc Madouraud I can provide some information on Chantecoq. Chantecoq was created by Arthur Bernède and appeared in a number of novels and series, beginning in 1912 and running intermittently through 1930. Chantecoq was a French private detective, but he began life as a counter-espionage agent, fighting against German spies before WW1. During the War he took on and beat every German plot and spy, helped by his scholar and scientist friend John Asbury, who created for Chantecoq a variety of technologically-advanced gadgets. He then went on to become the "King of Detectives" and even appeared as Belphegor's enemy. Chantecoq is a somewhat standard detective, although in the early years he is notably patriotic. He appeared in The Heart of France (1912), The Espionage of William (1914-1915), Chantecoq (1921, four stories: "Cocorico!" "The Smiling Man," "Hunting Monsters," "We Have Them!"), Belphégor (1927), The New Adventures of Chantecoq (1929-1930, eight stories: "The Mystery of the Blue Train," "The Haunted House," "The Aviator's Crime," "Zapata?" "The Ogre in Love, "The Ghost of the Father-Lachaise," "Condemned to Death," "The Murderer of Women") and The Devil's Daughter (1932).
Chard, Francis. Francis Chard was created by A.M. Burrage and appeared in various stories which were collected in Burrage's Some Ghost Stories (1927). Chard is an occult detective and "psychic sleuth." He is Watsoned by his friend Torrance.
Charles, Nick and Nora. Nick and Nora Charles were created by Dashiell Hammett and debuted in The Thin Man (1934), reappearing in numerous movies and radio and tv shows. Nick is actually Charalambides Charles, a former operative for the Trans-American Detective Agency. He met and fell in love with Nora, a 26-year-old heiress, and they married. He moves in with her and stops being an official detective, but he can�t help continuing to do unofficial detecting. They are a witty, alcoholic, greatly amusing pair, his cynicism being matched by her spirit of fun. (And they have great banter with each other)
Chase, Bob. Bob Chase was created by the Stratemeyer Syndicate and appeared in the four-book "Bob Chase Big Game" series, which began in 1929 with Bob Chase with the Big Moose Hunters. Bob Chase was a big-game hunter who traveled around the world, from Canada to Africa to India, hunting large animals and killing them.
Chéri-Bibi. Chéri-Bibi was created by Gaston Leroux and appeared in an eponymous 1930 novel, which was later made into The Phantom of Paris in 1931. Chéri-Bibi is a mysterious magician and escape artist who is charged with murdering his father. He's actually framed by a romantic rival, Max, who combines with his two-timing girlfriend Vera and sets Chéri-Bibi up. Chéri-Bibi is forced to become an outlaw, and for a while becomes the king of thieves, the thief that other thieves and the police fear, the one with the magic touch for escape and the ability to rally other thieves to him. However, he eventually proves himself innocent and then begins fighting crime, using his various skills to catch the bad guys.
a man with a big square head, wide mouth and thick lips, short, squat nose, immense ears, small, round, extremely piercing eyes, always on the alert underneath the arch of their harsh and bushy eyebrows; hair closely cropped...revealing the exact outline of the skull in which Gall or Lavater would easily have discerned bumps of amativeness, combativeness, and destructiveness which might pertain alike to a ragamuffin who would defend his mistress to the death, or to a soldier who would die for his country.Chinese Heroes. China, of course, has a long tradition of stories about heroes, predating by centuries similar Western writings. The frustrating aspect of this, for bibliographers and scholars like me, is that so little of it has been translated into English, and much of what has been translated is scattered about and lacking in substantive detail. Still, I've been able to find some of it and am providing it here.
The Blue Rattlesnake. This character was created by Sun Liaohong some time during the 1920s. She was an evil spy for Japan who was nicknamed "the Yellow Mata Hari."Christopher, Jimmy. See the Operator #5 entry.
Fuermohsi. Sherlock Holmes stories first appeared in China in 1896 and were immediately popular. Very quickly pastiches of Holmes, whose name in Chinese was "Fuermohsi" (or "Fu-er-mo-hsi" or "Fu-er-mo-ssu," depending on what reference source you read), appeared in various magazines, showing Holmes fighting against ghosts and fox women and fairies and other such traditional Chinese mythological beings.
Lu Bin. Lu Bin was created by He Puzhai or perhaps by He Puzhai and Yu Mugu--I've seen references to both authors being Lu Bin's creation. Lu Bin appeared in various stories and in a book in 1926, co-written by He Puzhai and Sun Liaohong. Anyhow, Lu Bin is the "Oriental Arsene Lupin." (Note the similarity in names) I don't have much more information about him, I'm afraid.
Sophia Perovskaya. There was a real Sophia Perovskaya, a Russian revolutionary anarchist who was part of the group which assassinated Tsar Alexander II. There was also a fictionalised Sophia Perovskaya, who appeared in Xin xiaoshuo huipan (New Fiction, 1902). The story, which was written by Luo Pu and was based on a previous Japanese work, Kinsei museifushugi by Kemuyama Sentaro. The fictional Sophia Perovskaya was (of course & naturally) a heroic, courageous, and unselfish heroine, a fighter against despotism (which Tsarist Russia certainly suffered under, but let's not lionize assassins, either), the "girl on the threshold," the ideal of the self-sacrificing spirit which Chinese intellectuals of the early 20th century found exciting and wonderful.
Christmas, Captain. Captain John Christmas was created by Stacey Blake and appeared...well, that's sort of tricky. Blake definitely created John Christmas, and Christmas definitely appeared in Penny Pictorial (in 1917) and The Thriller (in 1929) as well as in various of Stacey Blake's Sexton Blake stories in Union Jack, Detective Weekly, and The Sexton Blake Weekly, but apart from W.O.G. Lofts' comment that Captain Christmas was introduced in the Sexton Blake stories I don't know when or where he debuted. What I do know about Captain John Christmas is that he was a stout officer of the Empire, defending Britain and all things White from those heathen Africans. He was active across the continent, against Arabs and Ashanti, keeping the peace and fighting the good fight, etc.
Chu-Sheng. Chu-Sheng was created by Eugene Thomas and appeared in The Shadow of Chu-Sheng (1933), The Dancing Dead (1933), and Yellow Magic (1934). Chu-Sheng is a somewhat typical Yellow Peril characte, in this case a Chinese deaf-mute with various paranormal abilities. He works with the Japanese in their espionage efforts against America, and is opposed by Bob Nicholson, an American government agent, and his friend and ally Lai Chung, a Mongol prince, who works with the sangha of a group of lamas. The lamas provide the good magic, Nicholson provides the beefy fists, and together they defeat Chu-Sheng's schemes.
The Circus Boys. The Boys were...no, I can't do it. Circuses are evil--EVIL, DO YOU HEAR ME? I can't even bear to type the word. Look, just go to the link below and read about them:
Circus Boys on the Plains
*sob* the horror, the horror...
Clackworthy, Amos. Another of the pulp grifters, and longest running of them all, Amos Clackworthy was the creation of Christopher B. Booth, a widely published writer of mysteries and pulp stories. Clackworthy appeared in Detective Story Magazine from 1920 through 1930 and had two books about him published, Mr. Clackworthy (1926) and Clackworthy, Con Man (1928). Clackworthy and his assistant and friend James Early (known as "The Early Bird") work from Clackworthy's apartment in the Lakeshore Apartments of Chicago, overlooking Lake Michigan. (As a sidenote, there is a nice condo called the "Lakeshore Apartments" off of Lakeshore Drive in Chicago--just the sort of place a successful con man would live) Clackworthy was, as noted, a grifter, and he was all about separating the "suckers" from their money, but when he could afford it he focussed his attention and expertise on lightening the wallets of the undeserved rich. Clackworthy dresses well and looks handsome and solid, but inside he is slick and sharp, and even though the Depression wiped out his funds, he still continued to rip off the suckers (born once a minute). He even crossed over with Thubway Tham in a three-part serial in 1922.
Clark, Ben. Ben Clark appeared in "The Secret City" in 1941 and 1942. He was a private eye assisted by Jeff Wilson, a mechanic. The more interesting section of the serial came in the early sections, when Clark was investigating the nefarious and criminal doings of the mysterious arch-criminal The Stranger in a long-abandoned Chicago-area mansion.
Clavering, Jim. Captain Jim Clavering was created by Walter Frost and appeared in Flynn's in 1926. Clavering is a bluff, hearty man with a problem. The woman he loves, Helen Armistead, was somehow involved in the theft of several jewels. Clavering, a WW1 vet, feels the need to see them returned to their rightful owners, so that Helen, dear Helen, will not be in any trouble. Actually returning the gems proves more difficult, as there are criminals and police everywhere. Clavering manages, of course (was there any doubt), using his fists and guns when his brains do not prove sufficient, and discovers that Helen, sweet Helen, was innocent, that the thief was a friend of hers. But of course.
Clay, Cuthbert. Cuthbert Clay was created by J. Allan Dunn and appeared in "Marked By The Dead" in the 20 August 1917 issue of Detective Story Magazine. Robert Sampson has noted Clay's significance in the detective genre, and he's right; Clay marks the transition of the Holmes figure, the amateur detective, to a more realistic world of detective fiction, in which heroes have limitations and the police are not fawningly grateful for whatever help the mighty and vaunted amateur detective bestows upon them, however cryptically phrased. Clay is brilliant, of course, and in excellent shape, well-versed in nearly every field of learning and wealthy because of family money. He is also eager for excitement, and has made a hobby of solving crimes. However, the police only tolerate him, and his work does not take precedence over what they are doing, and more remarkably he admits this and does not complain. (Okay, the Inspector of Police comes to hold him in high regard and bends the rules for him, but it is a case of a character doing that for another character, and not the author bending the rules for a character)
Cleek, Hamilton. The "Man of Forty Faces," one of the more memorable of the early heroic amorals, what Robert Sampson calls the "bent heroes." Hamilton Cleek was created by Thomas W. Hanshew (1857-1914), an American who emigrated with his family to England in the late 1890s and began writing the Cleek stories soon after. Hanshew was a writer of dime novels (among them Old Cap Collier's) and other, more respectable mysteries, which were unfortunately highly derivative of Fergus Hume (of Hagar Stanley fame) and R. Austin Freeman (creator of Doctor Thorndyke). Cleek's adventures appeared in a number of venues, from magazines like Short Stories and All-Story Weekly to books of his own; their appearances ran from 1901 through 1925. Hanshew's death in 1914 did not stop the Cleek franchise, obviously; Hansew's wife, Mary, and daughter, Hazel, carried on the stories.
Cleek began as the foremost criminal of Europe (his stories were set in England and Europe). To quote from Cleek, the Man of Forty Faces (1910),
The biggest and boldest criminal the police had ever had to cope with, the almost supernatural genius of crime...who for sheer deviltry, for diabolical ingenuity and for colossal impudence...had not met his match in all the universe.Cleek is actually of royal descent, "Hamilton Cleek" being only an assumed name. He is the titled King of Maurevania, "that dear land of desolated hopes, dear grave of murdered joys." His mother, Queen Karma, was exiled and died penniless. Cleek's daughter died young, and his other brother disappeared into Persia. Cleek himself simply vanished, and there is no record of what he did after leaving Maurevania and before beginning his life of crime in Europe.
Who or what he really was...no man knew...in his many encounters with the police he had assumed the speech, the characteristics, and, indeed, the facial attributes of various nationalities...with an ease and a perfection that...had gained him the sobriquet of "Forty Faces" among the police, and of "The Vanishing Cracksman" from newspaperdom.
Quite a life of crime it was, too. He habitually warned the police when and where he would strike next, giving them twelve hours' warning. Needless to say, they are never successful in stopping him, and the morning after each exploit Superintendent Maverick Narkom of Scotland Yard would receive a small item from the theft, always contained in a small pink box tied with a rose ribbon, and accompanied by a card which reads "With the compliments of the man who calls himself Hamilton Cleek." During this time Cleek also became involved with Margot, Queen of the Parisian Apaches. ("apaches" was the Victorian-era phrase for street thugs) Margot is a rather alluring, if evil, woman, a "graceful, willowy figure" with an "enchanting, if rather too highly tinted face, with almond eyes and a fluff of shining hair," and she commands dozens (perhaps hundreds) of ruthless apaches, all devoted to her and willing to kill and die for her.
Alas, all good things must come to a badly-written ending, and so too with Cleeks' idyll of larceny. He meets Ailsa Lorne, a twenty-year-old orphan living in the mansion of her uncle, Sir Horace Wyvern, and directing his household. (She's penniless, despite her uncle's wealth) She's small and fair, very beautiful (but a trifle too much of a milksop for my taste). It only takes a glimpse of Ailsa's face for Cleek to be filled with remorse and vow to make himself worthy of her, even if it means returning all of his stolen loot, giving up his merry life of crime, and going to work for the side of Good.
He writes to Narkom, offering his services, and Narkom falls over himself accepting his offer. And so he becomes a consulting detective, putting his special skills to good use. He resolves not to propose to Ailsa until he's made restitution to all his victims; it doesn't help that her first reaction to him is repulsion. Cleek gets a boy assistant through Ailsa; Dollops, a starving nineteen-year-old Cockney, turns to crime and tries to rob Ailsa, and Cleek stops him and then adopts him, saving him from a life of illegalities. Dollops becomes very devoted to Cleek. Narkom similarly becomes devoted, albeit in a more craven way.
Life as a consulting detective agrees with Cleek. When he solves a case, he retires to his country home, to be dragged back into service by Narkom only after extensive beseeching. In action he motors around London in his red (or blue, depending on the story) Rolls royce. However, all is not perfect for Cleek. Margot, on being dumped by Cleek, swore vengeance on him, and sent her apaches after him. Cleek has to survive traps, bombings, gunshots, daggers, explosions, flaming buildings, and many other distressing events. Even when he makes it through these Margot and the apaches remain out there, hunting for him. Too, Cleek's "ordinary" adversaries, the criminals he hunts, are sometimes on the fantastic side. Cleek even goes to Maurevania, but refuses the offered kingship, on the grounds that Ailsa would only be a "morganatic wife," and not a proper queen.
Cleek, around 30 years of age, is "faultlessly dress, faultlessly mannered, with the slim-loined form, the slim-walled nose, and the clear-cut features of the born aristocrat...there was something about him, in look, in speech, in bearing, that mutely stood sponsor for the thing called `birth.'" His most distinguishing feature, though, is his face. His mother, while pregnant, played with a rubber-faced toy, and this somehow affected the fetus sometimes known as Hamilton Cleek, giving him the ability to rearrange the features of his face, somehow making the bone and cartilage go as flexible as putty. (Obviously a great advantage to criminality)
Among the other distinctive things about Cleek are his habit of whistling "God Save the King," his "queer little smile" that goes up one side of his face, and his military bearing and walk. He is, of course, very well-educated, even in the arcana of crime.
Michael Grost's comments on the Hanshews and Cleek.
Clowd, Ruderick. Ruderick Clowd first appeared in The Rise of Ruderick Clowd (1903), written by "Josiah Flynt," the pseudonym of Josiah Flynt Willard (1869-1907). Flynt, frankly, is a lot more interesting than Clowd is. Clowd is a rather bland young man who is driven to a life of crime as the masked "Second Story Man" and who succeeds and then retires to a life of love and leisure. Flynt, on the other hand, was an American who left college to live the wandering life of a hobo and who tramped around America and Europe. He began writing about his experiences in 1900 and penned several short stories and books based on them.
Clunk, Joshua. Joshua Clunk was created by H.C. Bailey and appeared in a dozen novels, beginning with Garstons (1930). Clunk is the most crooked and amoral lawyer in England, the one the worst criminals go to, knowing that he will do all he can to get them off, usually succeed and always give the judge the most difficult time possible. Clunk is widely loathed, not just by Scotland Yard (despite the help he has rendered to them on several occasions--help with ulterior motives, to be sure) but by other lawyers. Clunk's ineffective nemesis is Scotland Yard's Superintendent Bell, whose immortal quote is "I don't mind Clunk's always having five aces up his sleeve, but I do object to his telling me the Almighty put `em there." Clunk is short, plump, and dressed conservatively except for his stickpin, which has a large, gaudy ruby in it.
Michael Grost on Bailey and Clunk.
Cobra. The Cobra was created by Richard B. Sale and appeared in Ten Detective Aces in 1934. (In at least one later story he was referred to as the "Asp," but in most of the stories he was the "Cobra," so that's how I'm going to refer to him.) The Cobra is Deen Bradley, an Indian detective who works for British Intelligence. Bradley is a good detective, capable of operating and solving crimes in America and Britain as well as India, but the Cobra, his alternate identity, is much more feared; crooks were known to flee India when they heard the Cobra was coming after them. The Cobra even put down a "Persian uprising" in Bombay--he was that good. The Cobra is of course good with his fists and a good shot, but what he has going for him in particular is his cigarette holder, which can shoot poison darts tipped with cobra venom, a weapon that the enemies of truth and justice never expect or guard against.
Coe, Phyl. Phyl Coe appeared in "The Phyl Coe Mysteries" in 1936; her creator (and cast and crew, for that matter) remain unidentified. Coe was a "beautiful girl detective," smart and aggressive.
A decent summary of the character. From the Thrilling Detective site.
Cole, Dick. Dick Cole appeared in "The Adventures of Dick Cole," a 1942 radio serial. Cole was a cadet at the Farr Military Academy, where he won football games, tracked down crooks, and generally did his alma mater proud. He was assisted by his friends Ted and Simba (!).
Cole, Rex, Jr. Rex Cole, Junior was created by Gordon Chapman and appeared in the two-book "Rex Cole, Jr. Detective Stories" series, beginning with Rex Cole, Jr. and the Crystal Clue (1931) and concluding that same year with Rex Cole, Jr. and the Grinning Ghost. This is a series I'd very much like to know more about, as Rex is described by one source as a "juvenile occult detective," a genre that's always interested me. Did he take after his father--was his father also an occult detective? Were his opponents real ghosts and evil magical things, or were they Scooby Doo-style man-made enemies? I don't know, but if anyone out there does, please let me know.
That was what I originally wrote about RC Jr. Since then I've acquired Rex Cole, Jr. and the Grinning Ghost, and can provide somewhat more information on Rex. He does investigate the occult--in The Grinning Ghost the case involves a stolen Indian ruby, reported cursed--but the occult aspect of things turns out to be a hoax, designed by evil men to scare and fool the ordinary person. Rex, of course, is too clever for that and foils the bad guy's schemes. Rex himself is a strapping young man, with "steel grey eyes," a "straight, aquiline nose," a strong mouth and chin, and curly chestnut hair. He's avid to solve crimes, and thrusts himself into investigations which under normal circumstances would be the province of adults alone. Rex became famous after his first case, "marked...as a youth of great ability and initiative," and even Scotland Yard was impressed by him, enough so that they sent a special investigator to obtain his help when a valuable Indian ruby is threatened with theft. Rex is the son of Mayor Rex Cole of Hilton, Illinois; Rex's best friend is "Butterball" Thomas, his "greatest intimate" and a stereotype of fat boys everywhere, down to his clumsiness. Interestingly, Rex and Butterball are out of high school but are not college-bound, perhaps reflecting the assumptions of the early 1930s about what kids would do after high school.
Collin, Filip. Fillip Collin was created by "Frank Heller," the pseudonym of the Swedish writer Martin Gunnar Serner, and appeared in several novels, beginning with Herr Collins affärer i London (The London Adventures of Mr. Collin, 1914). He was a Swedish-born but internationally-operating "Continental Raffles," a good-guy thief. Formerly a Lund academic but now exiled for his crimes, Collin goes by the alias "Professor Pelotard," and is very much a Robin Hood kind of guy. Bo Lundin says, of Collin:
Collin has stolen some of his characteristics from Maurice Leblanc�s Arsène Lupin, but got even more from Heller himself. He is an excellent, logically sharp detective when that is called for, but might as easily decline to involve himself in the mystery he finds uninteresting compared to the surprises and high drama of life itself. Collin is a bonvivant and impudent flaneur rather than a sleuth. In contrast with most of his contemporaries in the criminal genre, he does not take anything or anyone very seriously, himself included.�Heller is not active in Sweden, but rather travels the Continent, fleecing those unfortunate enough to attract his interest. In three novels, reportedly his best, he investigates the dirty financial affairs of the Grand Duchy of Minorca. In another three novels he was quite active in France.
Collins, John. John Collins was created by Frederick Davis and appeared in Black Mask in the early 1940s. Collins was an operative for Army Intelligence who worked undercover as a piano player. Collins was abrasive, aggressive, and distinctly unlikeable.
Collins, Malay. This "master thief of the East" was created by "Murray Leinster" (pseudonym for William Fitzgerald Jenkins) and appeared...well, in some pulp of the 1930s, anyhow.
Thanks to Win Eckert, I can provide a bit more information on Malay Collins. He appeared in three short stories (original magazine unknown), "The Eye of Black A'Wang" (January 10, 1930), "The Emerald Buddha" (February 10, 1930), and "The Black Stone of Agharti" (September 10, 1930). Quoting Win:
Malay Collins is a Caucasian, apparently orphaned in the East at age eight: "Owning to the stupidity of certain white folk who did not recognize his race as a child, Collins was raised by a benevolent Oriental master thief to be his assistant in the business." However, "His brain is definitely a white man's brain. He knows it. At age eighteen he decided to return to the white race, and in eight months he learned no less than three languages for the purposes of selecting a nationality. But that affair turned out rather pathetically."Colt, Captain Lancing. Captain Lancing Colt was created by Frederick C. Painton and appeared in All Detective Magazine in 1934. Colt, a very talented man, worked for the Eugene Smithson Munitions Corporation as its "chief agent." But Colt never allowed his desire to earn a healthy salary to overwhelm his patriotism. Even in 1934 he was deadset against Japan and Germany, believing that both countries were being prepared for war against the USA. Colt took actions to stop this end, testifying to the Senate and, when that proved insufficient, taking on the agents of each country, as well as evil-doers in other countries (including one Eastern European operetta country. Colt is six foot tall, "lean and powerful," with brown hair, a handsome face, and green-grey eyes. He's also hot-tempered, an expert at savate, and a champion at the rapier. He lives in New York City but often passes time in Washington DC, at the Astor Towers. In his attacks on crime and evil he is assisted by a squat, red-headed mercenary and Marine veteran named Skit Shane. His girlfriend is Noreen Dale, a hot-tempered Irish beauty (that's not stereotypical at all), and the detective figure who admires Colt from a distance is Joe Walsh, who worked out of the Centre Street Headquarters, the same location as the detective in the Green Lama series.
Hey, I'm not making this up; that's why I put it in quotes. :-) (Quotes are from "The Emerald Buddha.")
Colt, Thatcher. Thatcher Colt was created by Anthony Abbot and appeared in a number of novels and movies, beginning with About the Murder of Geraldine Foster (1930). Colt is a child of privilege, born to a wealthy New York City family, raised in comfort and put through the best schools. While in college he grew interested in criminology and turned towards police work. He served in the American military during WW1 and then, after the war, became a policeman, rising in rank to become the city's Police Commissioner. He's not well-respected by those who don't know him; they see him as something as a dilettante. Those in the know, which include both his colleagues and the criminals of the City, regard him as the best Commissioner since the days of Teddy Roosevelt. He has a long string of successful convictions, is bright, well-schooled in the most advanced techniques, and is very good at using the resources of the N.Y.P.D. to their fullest. He is in his early forties, tall and strong and well-dressed.
Colton, Thornley. Thornley Colton was created by C.H. Stagg and appeared in three novels, beginning with Silver Sandals (1915). He was a blind detective, somewhere between Max Carrados and Captain Dunclan Maclain in abilities. Colton was "totally blind since birth" but overcame his disability to succeed as a musician, man-about-town, and detective, though assisted in some tasks by his secretary. He trained his other senses to ovecompensate for his blindness, and he now has "wonderfully sharp ears" and "super-sensitive fingertips."
Conan. Conan the Cimmerian, the reaver, dark, sullen-browed, Conan the Barbarian, a �strange, aloof man-beast,� was created by Robert E. Howard and debuted in �The Phoenix and the Sword,� Weird Tales, December 1932. I�m not going to spend too much time on Conan, since he�s one of the best-knowncharacters in the world---in the words of John Clute, �he became the central underlier figure for the sword-bearing, brawling, upwardly mobile barbarian hero of heroic fantasy.� He�s also indirectly responsible for the endless lifts, �homages,� pastiches, and rip-offs which cluttered newsstands and store shelves for decades, the �his sword wove a glittering web as he reaped a bloody harvest of death� characters. But the original stories are far superior to the imitations, as is almost always the case, and are well worth reading.
Connie. Constance Kurridge, best known to her many friends and readers as "Connie," was created by cartoonist Frank Godwin and debuted in Connie on 13 November 1927, running through the end of 1944. The indefatigable Connie, a feminist and woman's libber decades before her time, had an amazing series of adventures done in outstanding style for a number of years, with Godwin's art and the scripts of Ray Thompson and Grace Congleton both at high levels of excellence. Connie was a blonde woman in her late teens or early twenties, but was the opposite of the dumb blonde stereotype. She was independent, wily, clever, witty, and absolutely refused to settle for anything less than what she wanted to do. She began as a carefree young woman living with her parents in suburban New York and having relatively mundane "adventures," fending off suitors and enjoying herself. Then she learned how to fly, and the strip took off. She fly to Mexico in search of buried treasure, she became a reporter for the Daily Buzz and reported on and helped solve various crimes and kidnappings, and she go involved in squelching a Red revolt in the flyspeck banana republic of Anchovy, whose El Presidente made her a field marshal in gratitude for her help in stopping the rebellion. Then, in 1934, her parents ruined by the stock market crash, Connie went to work in earnest, first as a full-time newspaper reporter, and then as a private eye and owner of her own detective agency. Her cases, and various other stories, took her far, far beyond the limits of the U.S. With Jack Bird, her pilot friend, she discovered an advanced lost civilization in the Andes. She found another lost city, Lahkpor, in the Tibetan Himalayas, and when she found that Lahkpor's leaders were planning to use their atomic technology to conquer the world, Connie saw to it that their plot was foiled. She traveled into the future a thousand years and found a gynocentric society; she traveled across the solar system with Dr. Alden, a female scientist and one of Connie's many friends, and found alien races, ably defending herself and Dr. Alden when they were attacked. Connie fought invisible men, worked as an agent of the United Nations, was capable of anything she put her mind to, and was damn near perfect. As was Connie.
Surprisingly, the Web has this very nice page on Godwin, chock full o' illustrations. From the Illustrator Biographies page of the Bud Plant Illustrated Books site.
Conquest, Norman. Norman Conquest was created by Edwy Searles Brooks, the creator of Falcon Swift among many others, and appeared in The Thriller beginning in January 1937, and in hardback starting with Mr. Mortimer Gets the Jitters in 1938. Conquest is a private adventurer who dedicates himself to tackling those crooks who are beyond the law; Conquest's justice is to rob them of their wealth and return it to those who deserve it. Originally from India, he had to watch his father be ruined through a swindler, which left the Conquest family bankrupt. (The Conquest family, "long known as the `Lawless Conquests', had fought under the Percies in the Border Wars.") This forced Norman to run away from home, and he'd lived "on practically every corner of this earth--including Cochin-China, Siberia, Borneo, and Wigan." The first thing that Conquest did on reaching manhood was to go to London and see to the swindler, now a respectable lawyer. From there he tackles criminal syndicates (Vultures, Limited), smugglers (The Black Ring), beautiful thieves (Primrose Trevor), white slavers (Sir Nicholas Glibley), cruel mine operators, crooked nightclub owners, gangsters, and the aboriginal son of a Duke who liked turning his victims into life-sized wax effigies. Conquest is a handsome and square-jawed Chunk Manmusk type of great strength and endurance; at times these qualities are superhuman, reflecting his origins as a fix-up of the Rupert Waldo, the Wonder Man character. He also occasionally uses interesting gadgets, such as explosive lighters and cigarettes and a wristwatch with a flexible, sharp, toothed metal band. (Very handy for sawing his ways out of ropes) Conquest is a dashing, affable, laughing, hard man, in the same vein as the Saint and as given to light-hearted remarks in the face of danger but more ruthless, more lethal, more violent, and with less of a conscience. He's basically a more likable and less hateful version of Bulldog Drummond.
Conquest lives in a converted railway viaduct (don't ask). He is assisted by Joy "Pixie" Everard, the former secretary of the man who ruined his father; she left him to help Conquest and they fell in love quickly. She is small and elfin, but plucky and brave, and saves Conquest's life on more than one occasion. Conquest is also helped by Mandeville Livingstone, a former toy maker who lost his wife and child to murder and took to wandering the roads of England. Conquest took Livingstone in, stopped him from being framed for murder, and Livingstone repaid Conquest's generosity by becoming his Man Friday. The inevitable police presence in the series is Inspector William "Sweet William" Williams, who has a love/hate relationship with Conquest, hating his interferences but grudgingly admiring him at the same time. During the war Conquest's house and Hispano roadster are destroyed in the crash of a German bomber, and Joy almost killed, prompting Conquest into a one-man invasion of Germany.
Conroy, Reed. Reed Conroy was created by "Alan Gregg" (Gertrude Mallett's pen name) and appeared in the eight book "Reed Conroy Series," which ran from 1940 to 1948 beginning with Winged Mystery. Conroy was a teenaged pilot with the U.S. Border Patrol who solved mysteries with the help of his plane, stopping criminals and spies.
Continental Op. The Op was created by Dashiell Hammett, creator of Sam Spade, and first appeared in Black Mask in 1923, his stories running through 1927. To quote Anthony Boucher, who aptly summarized the Op and spared me the job:
The Op is fortyish and a little heavier than he should be. He appears only in cases which might logically be brought to a private detective. He is on excellent terms with the police. He carefully avoids emotional involvements with the people in a case. He stays sober when working. He is no lone wolf, but a cog in a large and efficient organization. He is tough in self-defense, but completely devoid of sadism. Many of his cases involve no physical violence; in those which inevitably do, the violence is written with taut understatement. He describes one of his most dangerous situations as "a game that made up in tenseness what it lacked in action," and the description fits most of his adventures.One might add that he's cynical, enjoys being a detective, is realistic about his work, very experienced, good at what he does, and relies more on his knowledge of people than on evidence or intuition.
Cook, Barney. Barney Cook was created by Harvey O'Higgins and appeared in a number of short stories which were collected in The Adventures of Detective Barney (1915). He was a sixteen-year-old telegram delivery boy, plump and with a disarming smile, who applied for a job with the Babbing Bureau (he was inspired to do so by Nick Carter stories) and got it through a combination of enthusiasm and New York guile. He's not a great detective--that's the job of Walter Babbing, a rather hard man and clever mind--but he gets by on native cleverness.
Cook, Bob. Bob Cook was created by Paul G. Tomlinson and appeared in the five book "Flag and Country Series" (also known as the "Bob Cook Series") beginning with Bob Cook and the German Spy (1917) and appearing through 1919. Cook was a steadfast young American who fought against the dirty Germans in the trenches and skies of Europe during World War One, never sullying himself (oh, no, of course not!) and managing to kill lots of those dirty, evil, wicked Germans.
Cool, Bertha. Bertha Cool, one of the first of the hard-boiled female private eyes, was created by "A. A. Fair," the pen-name of Erle Stanley Gardner, he of Perry Mason fame, and appeared in The Bigger They Come (1939). Bertha is �a sizeable hunk of woman with the majesty of a snow-capped mountain and the assurance of a steam roller;� she is in her sixties, with gray hair, gray eyes, and a generally benign expression. She�s also on the heavy side, weighing in at over 220. Her fat covers a lot of muscle, however, and she is sprightly despite her bulk. She is hard-boiled, but more than that she�s somewhat mercenary; she squeezes pennies until they scream and will take whatever case presents itself just so long as she gets paid. (�A lot of agencies won�t handle divorce cases and politics. I�ll handle anything there is money in. I don�t give a damn who it is or what it is, just so the dough�s there.�) She excuses this on the grounds that she was a child in the 1930s and suffered through the Depression. She was married, and kept her weight down with great suffering to herself (�Nature intended me to be fat�), but caught her husband cheating on her and let herself go. When he died she took control of Cool Confidential Investigations, his former firm. She is assisted by Donald Lam, a short twenty-nine year-old disbarred attorney (unjustly disbarred, of course) who is the brains of the duo but is forever underpaid by Bertha. Donald has an off-again, on-again relationship with the firm�s secretary, Elsie Brand.
Copperhead. The Copperhead was created by Franklin Adreon and five other writers and appeared in The Mysterious Doctor Satan (1940). The Copperhead is Bob Wayne, whose father (an outlaw who fought for justice) died at the hands of the world-domination-seeking mad scientist Doctor Satan (with a name like that, what other career path was available to him?) (note that this is not the same Doctor Satan that appeared in Weird Tales). Wayne, a colourless Thunk McBroncSlab hero, puts on the costume of the Copperhead, complete with a snakeskin cowl, to fight Dr. Satan and prevent him from constructing and controlling an army of killer robots. Wayne (as the Copperhead) wins and Dr. Satan dies.
The Mysterious Doctor Satan
An entertaining look at the serial from which the Copperhead came.
Cordie, Jimmie. Jimmie Cordie was created by W. Wirt and appeared in Short Stories, Frontier, and Argosy from 1928 through 1935. Cordie leads a group of five mercenaries in action in Asia, mostly in China but also in Guatemala and Central Asia. All of the mercenaries are hard, cold men, dead shots and dead souls, perhaps hardened by the events of WW1 or just maybe born that way. They were �men of honor,� but entirely ruthless in battle and without any compunction in mowing the enemy down. They had fought in WW1, but the peace afterwards left them useless and out of work, and so they did what so many other characters in the adventure fiction of this time did: sold their talents. They had been officers with the American Expeditionary Force or had served in the French Foreign Legion, or both; one had been a combat pilot for the RAF. They were all familiar with the Browning M1917A1, the heavy machine gun which proved their salvation in most of their battles, the natives not having any match for it.
Cotton, Gunston. Gunston �Gun� Cotton was created by Rupert Grayson and appeared in fifteen novels, beginning with Gun Cotton (1929). Cotton is an agent for the American government who fights against various threats to world peace. With his wife Toni, another agent, he fights against a master criminal in America, fascists planning to start a world war by bombing various European capitals from the air, and anti-British conspirators in a Central African colony.
Couper, John. John Couper was created by "Francis Beeding," the author of the Alaister Granby novels, and appeared in several books beginning with The Black Arrows (1938). Couper was a tough, no-nonsense member of the British Secret Service who took on fascist enemies both at home and abroad.
Courage, Dora. Dora Courage appeared in Fun and Fiction perhaps beginning with v2 n57, 9 September 1912. Dora Courage was a typist and a crime-solving girl, the sort of spunky, headstrong type who they made movies about in the 1930s.
Coxheim, Professor. Professor Coxheim was created by Henry McRae and appeared in The Mysterious Contragrav, a 1915 movie. Coxheim is a patriotic professor who has invented "contragrav," an anti-gravity device which can be used to make planes fly farther and faster than ever before, and on nearly no fuel whatsoever. Unfortunately, "enemy agents" find out about contragrav and attempt to take it. They initially succeed, but Coxheim's son and daughter recover it and fly away with it. They are pursued by the agents; the daughter escapes by strapping the contragrav machinery to her body and flying away. The spies shoot down the plane, killing Coxheim's son, but he gets revenge by capturing them all.
Craig, Stony. Created by two former members of the glorious Corps ("Remember, maggots, that God loves the Marines so much that he likes to keep Heaven stocked with as many of them as He can manage"), Stony Craig of the Marines debuted on 20 September 1937 and ran through the end of 1946. Stony Craig is a Sergeant in the Corps ("God loves the Marines! We kill everything we see!"), a veteran of World War One and the very definition of "hard-bitten" and "no-nonsense." Serving with him in the Corps ("What makes the grass grow, maggot? Blood, blood, blood!") are "Slugger" Wise, the stereotypical aggressive boxer from off the street; Jed Fink, who began as a naive hillbilly but grew to become resourceful and wily; and Jimmy Hazard, the blond pretty boy. With these three men Stony helped the Corps ("Semper Fi, do or die!") fight the Japanese in Shanghai before WW2, helped a group of Chinese freedom fighters due in large numbers of Japanese troops (the Chinese were led by Tania, a half-Japanese Dragon Lady clone, and her half-brother Ivan, the gigantic former colonel in the White Russian army), and ranged from Alaska to the flyspeck European country of Littenburg. During the War they went all over the Pacific, killing many, many more Japanese.
Crane, Bill. Bill Crane was created by Jonathan Latimer and debuted in Murder in the Madhouse (1934), appearing in five novels in all. Crane is in some ways a standard two-fisted wisecrackingtm private eye, but he is far more of a drunk than most other p.i. characters. To quote one critic, "He...often solves the crime while recovering from a hangover. Bill not only drinks before breakfast, he drinks during breakfast, and he drinks after breakfast." He's no rummy, however, and relies on reason and logic more than his fists to solve crimes. He is also notably wittier than most other two-fisted wisecrackingtm p.i.s and is somewhat of the the quintessential screwball private investigator. He operates in Chicago and is aided by a younger p.i., Doc Williams, and an older cop, Thomas O'Malley.
Cranshawe. Cranshawe was created by Gordon Hillman and appeared in various pulps, including Ghost Stories, in the 1930s. Mr. Cranshawe (no first name was given as far as I know) is an occult detective, based out of New York but operating across the U.S. and in Europe. Unfortunately, the one story I've read with him in it is short and gives few details on his personality (he's educated, informed, and somewhat cynical, but not unduly so), methods (in this story he isn't even the one to lay the ghost), or abilities. We do know that he lives in a large mansion and is assisted by his Japanese valet and the nameless Watson-like narrator. One critic praised his "stylish demeanor," for what that's worth.
Crerar, Sheila. Sheila Crerar was created by Ella Scrymsour and appeared in The Blue Book Magazine in 1920. I don't know anything about Crerar other than that she was the first female occult detective (think Dr. Silence or Carnacki the Ghost Finder). More information on Crerar would be appreciated.
Crime Doctor. The Crime Doctor was created by Max Marcin and appeared in �The Crime Doctor,� staring in 1940 and running through ten films and nine years. Benjamin Ordway is a gang leader who suffers a severe blow on his head. He wakes up with amnesia, and with the help of a kindly doctor he builds a new life and new identity for himself. He goes on to become the nation�s foremost criminal psychiatrist and medical detective. He helps track down and put away all sorts of insane and disturbed criminals. He is known to other criminals as once having been a gang leader, and they hold this �betrayal� against him. This doesn't bother him, of course, and he continues to fix the disease that is crime.
Crimson Clown.The Clown was the creation of Johnston McCulley, creator of the Joker and the White Rook, and appeared in Detective Story Magazine from 1926 to 1931, with two collections, The Crimson Clown (1927) and The Crimson Clown Again (1928). The Crimson Clown is actually Delton Prouse, a wealthy playboy bachelor, a World War One veteran, big-game hunter, and explorer of the North Pole; he is tall, dark, and handsome in a very Beef McBroncChest way. He doesn't have any real origin that I ever found, and his raison d'etre is basically to steal from the unjust rich and return the money to its rightful owners. So Prouse dresses up in a white clown outfit, equips himself with a tear gas pistol (later a "gas gun"), and goes a-robbing. He's hunted by Detective Donler, like so many of McCulley's police nemeses, is capable except where it comes to the "hero."
Crimson Mask. The Crimson Mask was a colorless crime fighter who appeared in Detective Novels in 1938. He was "Doc" Clarke, the son of a policeman killed in the line of duty. Doc worked as a pharmacist, but when the red bulb beneath his drugstore counter lit up, Doc put on the titular mask and went to work fighting crime.
Cromwell, "Ironsides." "Ironsides" Cromwell debuted in September 1939 in The Thriller. He was created by Edwy Searles Brooks. Cromwell worked for Scotland Yard as a very efficient investigator of criminals and German spies. He was assisted by Sergeant Potter.
Crook, Arthur. Arthur Crook was created by Anthony Gilbert and appeared in over 50 novels, from 1936 to 1973, beginning with Murder by Experts (1936). Crook is an attorney-detective, a lower-class Brit with a Cockney accent, atrocious taste in clothing, and a penchant for vulgar, gaudy cars. He is burly and red-faced, given to excessive consumption of beer and speaking at too loud a pitch. For all of that, though, he is very successful at his job, which is defense attorney. His motto is "My clients are never guilty," and he goes to great lengths to prove this, roaming around England, from the worst alleys of London to the most remote and fog-shrouded moors, to find the evidence he needs to get his clients off.
Crook, X. "X. Crook" (get it? X Crook? Ex-crook? Get it? Get it?) was created by J. Jefferson Farjeon and appeared in Flynn's Weekly in 1928. His name is an obvious pseudonym, chosen to announce to the world that he had reformed. Formerly he was a Henry, although his last name is never revealed. Also formerly, he was a crook, and a successful one. But twelve years in The Big House sobered him up and gave him a conscience, and on exiting prison he began a new career as a private investigator, which he is also successful at. In the stories he is middle aged, somewhat pale and greying at the temples. He works in London, assisted by Ernest "Pip" Price, a street urchin that X saved and who repays him by performing the usual Baker Street Irregular functions. X's butler is "William Thomas," but he can hardly be said to be helping X, as he is really Detective Edgar Jones of Scotland Yard. Thomas doubts X's reformation, as does the Yard itself, and they continually view all of his activities with suspicion. X is often approached by crooks, hoping his reformation is a sham, but X rejects them all, capturing them when the situation calls for it, and continues on the straight and narrow. He helps people and astutely eludes frames when their application is attempted.
Culver, Grace. Grace Culver was created by Roswell Brown and appeared in The Shadow Magazine from 1934 to 1937. She's a young, pretty red-head, a secretary and sometime agent for Big Tim, who runs the Noonan Detective Agency. In the words of the Thrilling Detective site, she's "smart, competent, brave and independent," as well as being fueled by the fact of her father's death at the guns of gangsters. While she is usually rescued by men by the end of the stories, she's usually solved the case by that point.
The Back Pages!
A nice site on the back-up features in The Shadow Magazine. Includes Grace Culver e-texts.
Cummings, Chief Inspector. Chief Inspector Cummings was created by Paul McGuire and appeared in a number of novels beginning with Murder in Bostall (1931). Chief Inspector Cummings is a London cop who with his assistant Sergeant Wittler solves crimes in the big city.
Cunliffe, Dr. Theodore. Dr. Cunliffe was created by "H. Frankish," a writer about whom I've been able to discover nothing. Cunliffe's adventures appeared in several magazines I've been unable to find; they were reprinted in Dr. Cunliffe, Investigator (1913), from which I'm taking this information.
Cunliffe is an Oxonian and a medical doctor who gets called in by Scotland
Yard to investigate the occasional strange and exotic crime. Cunliffe is
very much in the Sherlock Holmes vein in personality but has the traits
of later pulp characters. He is brilliant, a genius at detection and as
a scientist, is widely traveled, experienced, and knowledgeable about the
most obscure matters, and has superstrength, being able to lift a ton of
weight and wrestle an ape to a standstill. Among his cases were the following:
an evil scientist who discovered a way to disintegrate matter; a giant,
egg-like tentacled vampiric alien preying on young children in the Norfolk
countryside; a secret society of Oxonians who worship a beautiful snakewoman;
a brain transplant gone wrong; and cat-sized wasps.
A. The Abbey Girls to Dusty Ayres
B. Bagley to Scott Burton
C. Orhan Cakiroglu to Dr. Theodore Cunliffe
D-E. Dana Girls to Don Everhard
F. Ralph Fairbanks to Miss Fury
G. The Gadget Man to G-8
H-I. Dr. Hackensaw to Baron Ixell
J. Jack, Doc & Reggie to Justice Syndicate
K. Calvin Kane to Kwa of the Jungle
L. Major John T. Lacy to Langhorne Lyte
M. Professor Maboul to Mr. Mystic
N. Lee Nace to Nyoka
O. Fergus O'Breen to Ozar the Aztec
P. Penny Packer to Judge Pursuivant
Q. Oliver Quade to Sebastian Quin
R. Ed Race to Captain Rybnikov
S. The Safety First Club to Tom Swift
T-U. Tahara to Godfrey Usher
V. Lieutenant Valcour to Norton Vyse
W. Inspector Wade to Dr. Xavier Wycherley
X-Z. X Bar X Boys to Zorro