RARA-AVIS: Contents for Lowndes-edited pulps

From: Moorich2@aol.com
Date: 09 Sep 2003

As I have mentioned before, I have been picking up a few copies of the detective pulps published by Columbia Publications and edited by Robert Lowndes. All of my issues date from the 1950s.

Here are the contents (along with my comments) of four issues of Columbia Publications pulps. The numbers at the beginning of a line are page numbers:

Famous Detective Stories (Vol 12, No. 3 February 1952) (25cents 130 pages) 8*Dead Freight* Hunt Collins (Cover "Feature Novel" w/series character Guthrie Lamb) 27*I Want You Killer!*Richard Brister ss 34*Hot Ice Housewarming*Seven Anderton ("A Ware & Pender Novel") 58*Bid For The Devil's Throne*Daniel R. Gilgannon nt 74*The Deadly Daily*Aaron Holm ss 81*Beware of the Cashew Tree*David MacGregor ("An Archie McCann Novelet") 98*Case of the Frightened Child*Patrick Laing ss 104*A Head For Murder*Daniel Pitt nt

As we've discussed, the Hunt Collins "novel" (actually estimated at about 17,000 words) is an interesting private eye story featuring Guthrie Lamb who roams New York City carrying a .45 automatic and driving a 1942 Ford with a 1948 engine. Elsewhere in the issue there is a "Coming Next Issue" blurb for another Guthrie Lamb novelet "The Body Beautiful." This would put it in the May 1952 issue. Steve Lewis has let us know that the Ed McBain novel GLADLY THE CROSS-EYED BEAR features an aging private eye by that name who helps Mathew Hope.

Famous Detective Stories (Vol. 13 No. 1 February 1953, 25 cents 130 pages) 6*Spotlight On Crime: A Department For Mystery Readers* by Harold Gluck; Item one "Ali Baba of the Andes" by Juan Pastor 10*Dollars For Dupes*Seven Anderton (Feature Ware & Pender "Novel") 37*Figures Don't Die*T.S.Stribling (Feature Dr. Poggioli novelet) 49*The Chair's First Victim*G.A.Cevasco (Special Fact Feature) 52*House By The River*Carroll John Daly nt 75*Case Of The Honest Thieves*Thomas Thursday ss 86*Blondes Don't Care About Murder*John Rogers ss 90*Get-Away Deluxe*Frank Kane ss 93*Eat, Drink--And Be Killed*Philip St. John ss 102*Extenuating Circumstances*Walter Kanitz ss 112*The Hex Cat Murder*William F.Schwartz (True Crime Story) 117*Your Face Before Me*John Foster ss

The billed star of this issue is T.S. Stribling, the only name listed on the cover. I wonder if this was a reflection of Lowndes taste more than a judgement by him of the sales value of the authors. Carroll John Daly was, perhaps, as "retro" as Stribling but so much more suited to the rest of the issue and, perhaps, to the audience. Don't get me wrong I am a huge Stribling fan. It seems likely to me that this story had been rejected by Ellery Queen prior to submission. EQ had become the source of new Poggioli stories since the mid-1940s. Stribling ended up publishing three stories in Lowndes-edited magazines but when "The Saint" appeared in 1953 that magazine became a regular publisher of Stribling stories.

By way of background, Stribling had several careers. One was as an author of
"Off-Trail" stories published in Adventure Magazine that was the home of the original Dr. Poggioli stories, which were very popular. Doubleday published a collection and then there was silence for ten years before Stribling returned to it with a series of stories in Ellery Queen. Separate from that history, Stribling was a pioneer in realistic Southern fiction winning a Pulitzer Prize in 1932 for THE STORE, which was the middle novel of a trilogy about the South. I am a huge fan of Stribling who dealt realistically with racial differences before Faulkner (who read and kept all of Stribling's novels).

Kane we know as the creator of P.I. Johnny Liddell. Philip St. John is Lester Del Ray of SF fame. Seven Anderton I suspected was a house name as it appears often in the Lowndes western as well as mystery pulps. Turns out he had stories in Argosy in the late 1920s and early 1930s and had an adventuresome life including a stint with Pancho Villa before turning to writing.

Gluck was in many issues of pulp and digest mystery and western mags with both nonfiction and fiction. A 1959 "Future Science Fiction Stories" had an article with his by-line that gave him a Ph.D.

Famous Detective Stories(Vol. 14 No. 4 December 1954, 25 cents 98 pages) In addition to Robert W. Lowndes listed as editor, the staff includes Milton Luros, art director, Marie Antoinette Park, associate editor and Cliff Campbell, associate editor. Park must have been the subject of an office joke.
 6*Spotlight on Crime*Harold Gluck (Nonfiction regular feature, this entry entitled "He cured His Friend With Poison!") 10*Murder Yet To Come*Carroll John Daly nt 31*Tell It To The Devil*Hal R. Moore ss 34*Stain of Guilt*Wade B. Rubottom ss (Ford Wyatt story) 48*Fingerprint Facts*J.J.Mathews (Special Feature) 50*Mind Your Own Business*Glen Monroe nt

The Columbia mags were one of the last regular fiction markets for Carroll John Daly who sold them at least ten stories with a few appearing under the by-line John D. Carroll. I don't know if any featured Race Williams but one of my issues promotes the return of his old hero Satan Hall in a new story entitled "Avenging Angel" in the February 1954 issue of "Famous."

A Harold Gluck Ph.D had an article "Space Law" in the October 1959 issue of
"Future." From the late 1940s throughout the 1950s, Gluck was a regular contributor of both fact and fiction to pulp and digest western and mystery magazines. Many of his stories were in Lowndes edited magazines.

Smashing Detective Stories ( Vol 3 No. 1 March 1954) (25 cents, 98 pages) 6*Spotlight on Crime*James A. Youell (Nonfiction: "Illusions About Death, Sudden and Otherwise By Asst. Police Chief James A. Youell, Miami, Florida") 10*The Iron Claw*Daniel R. Gilgannon nt 41*The Children's Gun*John D. Carroll ss 52*Trial by Trigger*T.W. Raines ss 61*The Muted Horn*Richard Brister ss 68*Justice Guides a Bullet*Seven Anderton ss 79*Kindly Die Quickly*Will O. Grove ss 84*The Extra Passenger*Harold Gluck ss

The amusing pseudonym "Will O. Grove" belongs to Richard Brister.

Richard Moore

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