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Vol.18      April 2018    Number 4

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The Friends of the Arthur Conan Doyle Collection at the Toronto Reference Library
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"Such was the remarkable narrative to which I listened on that April evening–a narrative which would have been utterly incredible to me had it not been confirmed by the actual sight of the tall, spare figure and the keen, eager face, which I had never thought to see again." (EMPT)


Our old friend, Jeff Falkingham, recently told us ,"Minnesota mystery writer Jeff Falkingham has had his two Sherlockian pastiches, The County Courthouse Caper, and In Search of the Source, converted to digital form (details at  Jeff says he anticipates a boost in sales among at least three groups: seniors, who like to download eBooks to their computers and enlarge the type to a comfortable size; technology-savvy youngsters, who like to read books on their portable electronic devices; and international readers, who can avoid the cost of shipping and handling the hard cover or paperback copies. 


Our old friend, Gord Shriver, from Atlanta sent this one over. He told us, "Here is the photo--as I mentioned, from the Vincent Price Estate--of him with MYSTERY! producer Joan Wilson, then Mrs. Jeremy Brett." (Thanks, Gord. Neat photo.)


And speaking of Gord Shriver, in a recent communication he reminded us that his birthday is on February 21, hence, 2/21.


floor plan


And, speaking of matters of the mystery, Brenda Rossini's book also comes to mind!
In response to requests from those who could not attend previously, Brenda is scheduling a return trip to Graceland Cemetery,
Sunday, June 2, 9:30 a.m. on the nosey.
If you would be so kind as to purchase the paperback magnum opus referenced above-- so that you can follow along as we tread the ghostly footpaths of the dead. (Contact Brenda here.)


From Peter Blau's " Scuttlebutt from the Spermaceti Press"

The Redbeard Brewing Co. makes "small batches of big beers" and has a craft
brewery and taproom in Staunton, Va., where you can imbibe their 221B Baker
Brown Ale <>.

They're off and running: The Baker Street Irregulars' triennial running of
The Silver Blaze at Saratoga Race Course in Saratoga Springs, N.Y., is set
for Aug. 11. Lou Lewis <> is the contact, if you want
to enroll on their mailing list.

"Holmes in the Heartland" is the title of the conference planned for Aug.
10-11 by The Parallel Case of St. Louis; details on the gathering will be
found at <>.

"People love the monster but do not always honor the book," Scott Van Wyns-
berghe wrote in the National Post on Mar. 9, in a long article about FRANK-
ENSTEIN <>, kindly reported by Cliff Goldfarb; one
might believe that the quote might apply also to Sherlock Holmes.

(Peter Blau can now be read on line, Click Here)


Annual Spring Meeting
Saturday 26 May 2018 at 12:30 PM
This Celebration Will be Held at
Club Quarters Hotel – 2nd Floor
40 West 45th Street (5th/6th Avenues), New York City
(Handicap-access elevator just inside street door)
Cost of the Meal: $50 per Person*
Cash Bar


Hansom in fog - a graphic sent over by Ron Lies. He said that it was done by Henry Lauritzen, a Danish Sherlockian artist.


There are current issues of many Sherlockian newsletters and Journals for which the world is quite prepared: Consider, the following, please:
Scott Monty's "I Hear of Sherlock Everywhere"
"Canadian Holmes"; from the Toronto Bootmakers
"Groans, Cries and Bleatings," The Baker Street Breakfast Club
"South Downers Journal, " South Downers
"The Bilge Pump," Crew of the Barque Lone Star (The Crew's web site)
"Gaslight Gazette," Survivors of the Gloria Scott
"Ineffable Twaddle," The Sound of the Baskervilles (Check out the SOB's web site.)
The District Messenger," Sherlock Holmes Society of London (SHSofL web site)
"The PINK 'UN, the Hansom Wheels of Columbia, SC (now published on the internet)
"Scuttlebutt from the Spermacetti Press," Peter Blau (can now be read on line, Click Here)
(BTW: speaking of Peter Blau, you might find it interesting to check out The Red Circle's web site!
Sherlock Peoria
Willis Frick's inimitable web site, Sherlocktron
Chris Redmond's site:
Interesting though Elementary
Rob Nunn's great website


Baker Street Elementary
Steve Mason, Rusty Mason, Joe Fay from The Crew of the Barque Lone Star


Of Jute, Jam, and Journalism
Liese Sherwood-Fabre

The port of Dundee in Scotland is mentioned in twice in the canon.” In “The Five Orange Pips,” the postmark on a letter from the port of Dundee indicates the writer was on board a ship. Holmes lures a harpooner (and murderer) who has sailed 26 voyages out of Dundee with a position on the crew for a fictitious exploration ship in “The Adventure of Black Peter.” Various aspects in these stories represent actual characteristics of the seaport during the late 1800s when these two adventures occurred.

Dundee is a very old (dating back at least to the 1100s) seaport northeast of Edinburgh, Scotland on the Firth of Tay. This estuary (firth) lies at the mouth of the river Tay and empties into the North Sea. The town has reinvented itself three times in the past four centuries, having to rebuild following almost complete destruction by Cromwell’s forces during the Third English Civil War in 1651; the rise in demand for British-made linen, whale oil, and marmalade in the 1800s; and a growth in tourism beginning in the 1960s.

The rebirth of the 1800s was said to have been founded on “Jute, Jam and Journalism.” In the 1700s, when an export tax was rescinded on linen, steam-power flax spinning mills were built to meet the increased demand for the cloth. By 1835, 36 such mills operated in the city. When jute arrived from India about 1835, the city used this commodity to produce carpet backing and sacks, further expanding production. Because whale oil was required in jute production and ships for transporting the goods, the rise in textile manufacturing spurred the increase in these industries as well. At its height, Dundee produced 200 ships a year.

Also in the 1700s, James Keiller & Son set up a jam factory and created the first commercially produced marmalade. By the 1880s, the company’s jams were shipped all over the world. The jars still bear their origin city in their name and labels today.  

The final “J” (journalism) traces its origins to William Thompson’s purchase of the Charles Alexander & Company, publishers of the local paper. In 1884, David Coupar Thompson took over the management of the company and created DC Thompson, a major publishing house that currently controls a wide array of newspapers, comic books, TV stations, and Websites.

As shipbuilding and textile manufacturing declined, the city sought to redefine itself once again. A new transportation route to the city (the Tay Road bridge, which opened in 1966), and a new attraction featuring the HMS Unicorn formed the basis for the city’s nascent tourism industry. This frigate, launched in 1824, is the only complete sailing warship remaining, and is one of the

few ships in the world that has had a permanent home port throughout its history. Additional support for tourism appeared with the return of the RRS Discovery in the 1980s. This ship, built in 1901, carried Robert Falcon Scott and Ernest Shackleton to Antarctic. It was also the last traditional wooden three-masted ship built in Britain. Today, it is housed at Discovery Point in Dundee. Various tributes to several successful Antarctic expeditions appear throughout the city.

The significance of Dundee as a major port and a center for whaling would not have been lost on Holmes. And the name of the Black Peter’s Sea Unicorn might just have had an inspiration from another Dundee resident.


“It is The Morning Chronicle of April 27, 1890. Just two months ago.” (REDH)


Ed's face
is rough
and rugged
Ed's wife
Doesn't hug Ed
(circa 1936)


In March, we asked
What canonical character might have said:

"Arthur, What do you suppose ever happened to Mary?"

From Jerry Riggs: This is Alexander Holder, senior partner in Holder & Stevenson of Threadneedle Street. He is asking his son Arthur about Mary Holder, Alexander´s niece and "a sunbeam in his house" ( BERY).

From Ron Lies: Alexander Holder, of the banking firm of Holder & Stevenson, of Threadneedle Street.

From Steve Mason: I am going with Mr. Alexander Holder, of Holder & Stevenson, of Threadneedle Street.  In “The Beryl Coronet,” he could easily be asking his niece, Mary, what had become of his wayward son, Arthur, and why he would have try to steal away the valuable gems entrusted to Mr. Holder.  Of course, Mary turns out to be the bad seed of the family.

From Ed Lear: It might be Watson if he ever had a seance with his father-in-law, Captain Arthur Morstan,  However I am thinking that it is Alexander Holder (BERY) who you had in mind.

From Anders Odensten: This is Alexander Holder, senior partner in Holder & Stevenson of Threadneedle Street. He is asking his son Arthur about Mary Holder, Alexander´s niece and "a sunbeam in his house" ( BERY).

Good scholarship, all!
Now, For April

What canonical character might have said

"I don't care what your real name is, I'm slapping you with a breach of promise suit!"

Click Here to respond.
Please put the word "Character" on your subject line. Thanks.

Thanks, all, for your interest and outstanding Sherlockian scholarship!


Important Sherlockian Events for April
1st: Stuart Gill Born (1935)
1st: The Hon. Ronald Adair murdered by Col. Moran (1894)
2nd: Elliott Black Born
(Our friend passed over Reichenbach April 24, 2015)
2nd: Radio Broadcast of "The Amateur Mendicant Society," Rathbone and Bruce (1945)
5th: Sherlock Holmes returns from The Great Hiatus! (1894)
8th: Cathy Gill Born (1950)
13th: The Adventure of the Solitary Cyclist begins (1895)
15th: "The Gloria Scott" published, Harper's Weekly (1893)
17th: Sherlock Holmes thrashes Mr. Woodley in the pub near Farnham (1895, SOLI)
22nd: Rondo Hatton Born (1894 - see Pearl of Death)
27th: Morning Chronicle announces vacancy in The League of Red-headed Men (1890)
29th: William Gillette dies (1937)
Release of movie, Sherlock Holmes in Washington (1943)


A bit of spring from our home to yours,
Carolyn and Joel

"Guilty mind sometimes pinch worse than ancient boot of torture."Charlie Chan