TEN YEARS HAVE PASSED since the publication of The House of Beadle and Adams, and during that time I have discovered many changes and corrections that need to be made in the text, and much new material that should be added. In the first two volumes, the sources of the data given were cited in voluminous footnotes, but later discoveries showed that the published material was not always accurate. The memory of older men, and even of men not so old, is likely to be hazy about casual things which at the time made little impression. I mentioned this confusion in the memories of some of the dime novelists in the introductory chapter of Volume II, and noted that some articles, even by associates, were written long after the dime novel had ceased to be. Old tales, often repeated, unconsciously grow; consequently former gossip apparently becomes mentally fixed as truth. I always think that it is a lucky thing that people's memories are very short.
The data recorded in Volumes I and II of this work were taken from the best sources available at the time. Research, however, was not discontinued with the publication of the books, and a search through old newspapers, periodicals and letters, and visits to the old stamping grounds of the writers, brought to light further information. Fellow collectors have also unearthed obscure data. As this material accumulated, it seemed almost a crime to leave it unpublished, for the corrections and additions are necessary to bring the book up to date. While the old novels were fiction, many of them give better pictures of American pioneer days than some so-called authentic histories.
Besides amendments to the text, there also have been added several new subjects.
Among these is the pairing of the various Beadle novels with their English reprints.
Only the more important long runs are listed. No attempt was made to pair the
minor, sporadic English reprints or the numerous
translations into German, Scandinavian, or Romance languages. These translations are generally not in continuous series, although some, such as the German Wildtöter (300 issues), Texas Jack, and Buffalo Bill series were.
Another addition to this volume is the Index of Songs, listing the titles of all the songs which appeared in the many Beadle Songsters. Most of the titles were listed from songsters in my own collection, but a few are from lists published by Beadle in his own story papers; consequently, though rarely, an occasional song with a short title was not checked against another song with the same title, and the two may thus be listed together. Normally, two different songs with the same title are given in separate lines. For the sake of ease of reference, the index is preceded by a complete list of the 121 Beadle Songsters arranged chronologically, and these numbers are used after the song titles to indicate where they may be found.
There have been some changes in the list of pseudonyms of Beadle authors, but since the original list was fairly complete, the changes are not many. For other pen names, mostly of dime novelists writing for other publishers, the lists which appeared during the past two years in the Dime-Novel Round-Up may be consulted. A reference to these lists is given below with the newly added pseudonyms.
To Ralph Adimari, Ralph Cummings, George H. Cowdrick, Edward T. LeBlanc, Denis R. Rogers, Don Russell, Ralph Smith, and many other friends who so kindly assisted me by bringing to my attention widely scattered data, I am deeply grateful. Gratifying also, as showing the interest still taken in the old novels, were the many suggestions received for pairing the true names of authors with their pseudonyms. While many of these suggestions were found upon further investigation to be based upon foundations too nebulous to be used here, that does not make my thanks less sincere. That many of my friends who are not collectors of dime novels told me, as friends do, that they enjoyed Volumes I and II of this book, was very flattering but not unexpected, for I must acknowledge that these books are really beautiful pieces of bookwork by the University of Oklahoma Press, but that it should have moved such men as the late A. S. W. Rosenbach and other bookmen to write me personally was entirely unexpected and very gratifying. To all of them also, my thanks.
With this book I am probably closing my writing career. I have now done fourteen
books; possibly more than my share. The ranks of my contemporaries are getting
thin and the readers of the old black and white quartos are few and far between.
Twenty-four of my collector friends with whom I corresponded about the Beadle
novels during the past thirty-five years have passed away. To them I offer this
volume as a memorial.
Ave atque vale.
Winter Park, Florida
September 15, 1961
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