From: Dick Lochte ( dlochte@adelphia.net)
Date: 16 Dec 2002

-----Original Message-----

Date: Sun, 15 Dec 2002 17:53:47 -0500 From: Nathaniel Stout Adams < nsa8y@cms.mail.virginia.edu> Subject: RARA-AVIS: Mysterious citation

Hello everyone - I'm new to the list, so if I breach a sacred tenet of (n?)etiquette, please hasten to let me know.

I have a question that is indirectly related to mid-c.20 detective fiction. In doing some research on the history of autograph collecting, I found the following definition and citation in the Random House Historical Dictionary of American Slang:
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- -------- autograph hound n. a collector of autographs, esp. an offensive person who clamor for the autographs of celebrities. Now colloq.

1933 in Ruhm [ital]Detective[/ital] 72: He was an autograph hound....He collected autographs. Autographs of all the stars....He had five hundred of 'em.
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- -------- I'm curious about the citation. What "Detective" magazine is it referring to? Who is this mysterious Ruhm character? What does the number 72 refer to? The only info I've been able to dig up on the web relating the name Ruhm to detective fiction is Herbert Ruhm's anthology, "The Hard-Boiled Detective: Stories from Black Mask Magazine, 1920-1951." If anyone on the list who has seen that volume can speak to its relevance, or if anyone has an idea about how I should approach this problem, I would greatly appreciate any assistance you can provide.

The reference is to "The Hard-Boiled Detective" edited by Herbert Rumm
(Vintage, 1977). The reference is from page 72, early in a story by Norbert Davis, "Kansas City Flash."

"'He was an autograph hound,' Pete said. 'He came to just before he died and told me all about it. Before the doc got there. He collected autographs. Autographs of all the stars ...'"

Dick Lochte

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