The European Wold Newton Universe
Updated 13 May; updates
c. 1860-c. 1900. A "blackness of treachery"
forces a Spanish nobleman to take to the Andalusian highlands and
become the infamous Don Q, "Don Quebranta Huesos," a.k.a.
"Don Bone Smasher." Don Q is no ordinary thief or bandit chief. He
is a sequestrador, one who kidnaps and holds for ransom, what
Don Q describes as “the noblest rank of brigand.” When his men discover
a traveler making his way across the “magnificent desolation” which
is Don Q’s home, they capture the traveler and escort him to the mountain
headquarters where Don Q resides. Don Q then chats with his victim,
usually cordially, for Don Q is an aristocrat to his bones and thoroughly
believes in the duties of the host, which include a kindly courtesy.
Don Q then disposes of “the disagreeables of business,” the setting
of the ransom, which is always what he believes his victim, or the
victim’s friends and family, or the victim’s country, can afford to pay.
If the ransom is not paid, “regrettable consequences” follow. If not all
of the ransom is paid, the consequences are equally regrettable; if only
75% of the ransom is forthcoming, only 75% of the kidnap victim will return
to freedom. (Kate and Hesketh Prichard's Don Q stories, beginning with
"The Parole of Gevil-Hay," 1897). (A later biography of Don Q, Don
Q's Love Story, cannot be reconciled with the earliest accounts of
Don Q's love and so must be disregarded).
c. 1861-c. 1900. A short, blond, cigar-smoking German
named Karl emigrates to the United States. He moves to St. Louis
to be a tutor to the Henries, a wealthy family of German immigrants.
But Mr. Henry, a famous gun-maker, sees that Karl has the potential
to be one of the great Westmänner, the “West Men” who
are taming the American frontier. Mr. Henry makes two special rifles
for Karl, Henrystutzen (“Henry Rifle”) and Bärentöter
(“Bear-Killer”), and gets Karl a job on a surveying crew for a railroad.
The Americans Karl works with are crude and ignorant, lacking the
education and wisdom of Karl, and he takes it upon himself to teach
them proper German manners. Karl readily admits that he is a greenhorn,
but because he is a German greenhorn he is a capable student who learns
During the surveying Karl and the rest of the railway
crew are captured by a band of Kiowa. The strongest of the Kiowa
warriors challenges Karl to a fight. Karl, who is not only unusually
strong but extraordinarily fast, knocks the Kiowa out with one punch—unlike
his opponent, Karl was not armed, as he dislikes bloodshed—and gains
himself the nickname “Old Shatterhand.” Karl saves the other
surveyors from being scalped by the Kiowa, but they are soon captured
by a band of Mescalero Apaches and brought to the pueblos of the Mescalero.
The Mescalero chief Intschu-tschuna and his son Winnetou force Karl
to undergo tests of strength, frontier skills, and endurance. Karl passes
them, runs a gauntlet, and succeeds in capturing Intschu-tschuna. This
earns Karl membership in the Mescalero as one of their chiefs. Winnetou
becomes Karl’s blood brother and teaches Karl the lessons of “Indian School,”
which includes not only the languages of the “Apache” and “Navajo," but
also the tactics of the “Indians.”
Winnetou’s beautiful sister, Nscho-tschi, falls deeply
in love with Karl. Karl does not believe in miscegenation, but is
willing to marry her if she converts to Christianity and is educated
in the ways of white men. Nscho-tschi and Intschu-tschuna are on their
way to a white school in St. Louis when they are murdered by an evil Yankee,
Santer. Over the next two novels Shatterhand and Winnetou pursue Santer,
accompanied by Karl's abnormally intelligent and faithful horse Hatatitla.
The trio wanders from St. Louis to San Francisco to Mexico, avenging
wrongs and teaching ignorant Americas the proper ways of the Westmänner.
Shatterhand, Winnetou, and Hatatitla rescue innocent maidens from bloodthirsty
and lust-filled native savages. They bring the the law to lawless towns.
They fight evil Mormons, degenerate half-breeds, and psychotically
evil Yankees. Santer is killed, but Winnetou is mortally wounded in
the struggle. He converts to Christianity before dying, and Old Shatterhand
continues on by himself. (Karl May's Old Shatterhand novels, beginning
with Winnetou v1, 1893).
1864-c. 1900. Texas Jack Omohundro becomes
a legend on the frontier, as a scout, cowboy, and soldier of fortune.
On behalf of the Mexican people he fights French soldiers in the
Mexico of Emperor Maximilian I. He fights opium smugglers in New
Orleans. He heads up cattle drives. He helps Buffalo Bill Cody
(see below). He works as a scout for the American army and as a hired
gun for the Mexican army. He works for the Canadian Mounties. He discovers
a number of enclaves of Lost Races. Stories of him are everywhere, and
a surprising number of them are true. (Texas Jack #1-215, 1906-1911,
Texas Jack, la Terreur Des Indiens #1-270, 1907-1912, Der
Grosse Kundschafter #1-100, 1911-1912, Texas Jack, Der Große
Kundschafter #1-120, 1930-1932, and Texas Jack, Der Große
Kundschafter #1-75, 1932-1934).
c. 1865-c. 1880. Olaf Svenson, a wandering
Danish swordmaster, fencing teacher, and mercenary, leads a life
filled with adventure. At different times of his life he is the swordmaster
to the Czar, where he fights a Nihilist conspiracy; the instructor
at arms to the King of Spain, the fencing instructor to the leader
of Cuba, and a mercenary in Honduras, hired to kill off the Seven Deadly
Brothers of Tabasco, a widely feared family of bandits and espadachins.
Svenson is a superior swordsman whose nicknames are “Iron Wrist,” because
of his strength, and “El Rubio Bravo,” the “brave blond,” because of
his white hair. Svenson’s skill at arms extends beyond the blade to guns,
and he is deadly even with the rifle and bayonet, but he is pure hell with
the sword. (Colonel Thomas Monstery’s Olaf Svenson stories, beginning with“Iron
Wrist, the Sword master. A Tale of Court and Camp,” 1879).
c. 1865-c. 1890. At the end of the American Civil
War a German emigrant arrives on the western frontier of America.
He immediately takes to the frontier life and quickly earns the respect
of both white and red natives, becoming known as the New Leatherstocking.
He helps the endangered weak (both Anglo and native), fights the malicious
strong (both Anglo and native), and solves criminal cases. Although
many of his enemies are ordinary, if wicked, some are extraordinary,
both superhuman and other than human, as in trip to the jungles of Mexico,
where he discovered “The City of the Gorilla Men.” (Der Neue Lederstrumpf
It is possible that the “City of the Gorilla Men” was the
source of the legendary Six-Gun Gorilla. There is no established
link between the "Gorilla Men" which the New Leatherstocking discovered
and O'Neil, and the level of sentience of the "Gorilla Men" seems
to have been beyond what O'Neil was capable of (although, like so much
else regarding Six-Gun Gorilla, this is contradicted by a number of
oral anecdotes), and O'Neil's provenance--bought from a wandering merchant--would
seem to argue against his having been born to the reclusive "Gorilla Men."
But there are no other reliable, documented examples of even partially
sentient primates (besides humans, of course) in North America. (The Six-Gun
Gorilla stories, beginning in 1925).
c. 1865-c. 1900. The Hunkpapa Lakota Sioux chief
and leader Sitting Bull leads a far more exciting and adventurous
life than the white American press gives him credit for. Both before
and after the 1876 battle at the Little Big Horn River, Sitting Bull
was active across the Americas, and although much of his time was spent
fighting the incursions of Anglos on to the lands of his people and
other native peoples, on a number of occasions he helped Anglos against
the efforts of evil natives. For at least a decade after his supposed death
he continued to travel in North and Central America and find adventure.
(Sitting Bull, Der Letzte Hauptling Der Sioux-Indianer #1-180, 1906-1909
and Berühmte Indianerhäuptlinge #1-160, 1906-1909).
Like most of his adventures, the date of Sitting Bull's
final, real death is unknown, as is so much of his life after the
December, 1890 death described in the newspapers of the time. It is
possible that Sitting Bull met and even teamed up with some of the more
native-friendly adventurers on the frontier, whether Old Shatterhand
or Deadwood Dick. It is known that the famous New York City detective
Old King Brady mourned Sitting Bull and went so far as to release
a public statement that the conditions under which Sitting Bull was supposed
to have died--dragged unarmed out of his cabin and shot by policeman--"make
me ashamed to call myself an American citizen." (Frank and Jesse James
story in Boys of New York, 1890). Whether Brady, who often
ventured into the frontier in pursuit of Frank and Jesse James
or Deadwood Dick, ever heard that Sitting Bull was still alive is
A innocent cowboy by the name of Tex Willer is
framed for a crime he did not commit and is forced to wander around
the frontier of the United States, Canada, and Mexico, trying to clear
his name. Even while a wanted outlaw he never fails to help those in
trouble, and after his name is cleared he becomes a Texas Ranger. He
marries Lilyth, a beautiful woman, and is eventually made an honorary
leader of the Diné (what whites call the Navajo) and
one of the de facto rulers of the Diné reservation.
As a Texas ranger his missions take him across the United States, from
Boston to San Francisco’s Chinatown to Texas. He fights savage natives
and bloodthirsty whites in Canada and fights a Lost Race of Mayans in
the Yucatan Peninsula. He befriends the famous scout Kit Carson
(who lived significantly longer than the 1868 date the history books give
as the date of his death), who becomes an uncle to Tex’s son, Kit Willer.
Tex befriends the famous Diné warrior Tiger Jack.
And Tex fights a variety of dangerous men: Proteus, an
armed robber with an almost superhuman mastery of disguise; Paco
Ordoñez, a.k.a. “El Muerto,” a crack shot whose face was disfigured
by Tex; Sumankan, a prince of Mali who lost his wealth and empire thanks
to the actions of white men and so came to America and, under the name
of “Tigre Nera,” tried to unite Chinese, Blacks, and corrupt/venal whites
into a fighting force to overthrow the American government; and Andrew
Liddell, a.k.a. “The Master,” a mad scientist who tried to blackmail San
Francisco and who used a cult of voodoo worshipers in an attempt to loot
New Orleans. Worst of all is Tex’s arch-enemy, Steve Dickart, who gained
eternal infamy as “Mefisto.” Mefisto was a stage magician and illusionist
who used his hypnotic ability for crime. Repeatedly defeated by Tex, Mefisto
studied under Padma, a Tibetan monk, and gained actual magical powers. Mefisto
allied himself with the wicked Hualpai tribe of Mexico and with a group
of voodoo worshipers but was never able to defeat Tex. He eventually died
in the flaming ruins of his castle in Arizona. (Bonellie & Galleppini’
Tex Willer, 1948-present).
It cannot be said with any certainty, but it is quite
possible that the evil Tibetan monk Padma was an agent of the Nine
Unknown, who as described
elsewhere are an organization of evil lamas, headquartered in
Asia, who use their unnatural powers and advanced technology to spread
misery and chaos across the world. Agents of the Nine Unknown were responsibel
for empowering a variety of men and women over the centuries, from Monsieur
Ming, the enemy of Bob Morane, to the would-be world conqueror Gorillard,
to the “mad scientist” Dr. Xhatan. It would be entirely in character
for Padma to have been acting on the orders of the Nine Unknown when
he gave Mefisto supernatural powers.
c. 1866-c. 1890. William “Buffalo Bill”
Cody leads an exciting, event-filled life. He ranges across the United
States and North and South America, fighting Aztecs, evil natives,
evil cowboys, evil Yankees, making life-long friends with various
natives, and in general helping the weak and fighting the oppressively
strong. (Buffalo Bill, der Held des Wilden Westerns #1-386,
1905-1912, and #1-123, 1930-1933). One of his best friends is Texas
Jack Omohundro, but the behavior of the real Texas Jack is significantly
at odds with the behavior of the fictional Texas Jack portrayed in certain
dime novels. (Ned Buntline’s various Buffalo Bill stories, beginning
with “Buffalo Bill, the King of Border Men,” 1869). The historical image
of William Cody is of a huckster who stopped adventuring in 1877 and
became a showman more concerned with making money and embellishing his
own legend than with doing good, but the true Buffalo Bill was far less
1867-c. 1890. On March 29, 1867 the British North America Act
united Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia into the Dominion
of Canada. Difficulties in the administration of the government of
United Canada had led to this move, and following the Act Canada
had finally become one nation. However, the nation faced a number of
threats. Anarchists were a very real danger, with Fenian violence
and raids on Canada from America having begun in 1866. The native peoples
felt, with reason, that their land was being surveyed by the government
only to facilitate its theft, and this feeling would lead to violence
in the 1869-1870 Red River Rebellion. And the nation itself was only
thirty years separated from the 1837 rebellion, which split Upper and
Lower Canada and led to street fighting in Montreal and an international
incident when the Canadian government seized and burned the American steamer
Caroline, which had been supplying the rebellion.
Well aware of these dangers, the new Canadian government
formed the Canadian Secret Service. One of their first recruits
was Jim Hoover, a hunter and trapper who agreed to carry out the duties
of a Secret Service agent on the frontier. With the help of his best
friend, the Mohawk Old Crow, Hoover (now known as Alaska-Jim),
patrolled the western frontier of Canada and defeated a wide range of
threats. One of those who occasionally assisted him was the man known
as Sturmvögel (see below). (Sachse and Winkler’s Alaska-Jim,
Ein Held der Kanadischen Polizei #1-227, 1935-1939).
It is not recorded whether Alaska-Jim ever encountered
the notorious half-breed trapper known only as Pierre, but
given their differing approaches to law enforcement–Alaska-Jim
was known as someone who, despite the unforgiving environment, hewed
closely to a strict morality, while Pierre cared far more about justice
than the law–if they had encountered each other there undoubtedly would
have been some conflict. (But it is equally without a doubt that Pierre
would have assisted Alaska-Jim in the pursuit and apprehension of truly
bad men). (Gilbert Parker’s Pierre stories, beginning with “The Patrol
of the Cypress Hills,” 1890).
Nor is it recorded whether Alaska-Jim ever worked with
members of the Mounties, although the 1875-1876 rebellion in northwest
Canada, which was put down largely through the efforts of Sergeant
Eric Lewis and his men, would surely have brought him running.
(Stewart Sterling’s “Red Trails,” 1935).
An individual who Alaska-Jim did encounter is the infamous
sky-pirate Captain Mors. An early (and obviously heavily
fictionalized) account was published early in Alaska-Jim’s serialized
biography. (Sachse and Winkler’s “Der Luftpirat von Oglivie,” Alaska-Jim
#5, 1935). Interestingly, the environment in which they clashed is
described as being remarkably similar to the environment around Promontory
Point, in what was the Nevada Territory. Promontory Point was the scene
of more than one conflict, but the one most relevant here was the 1873
clash between the bounty hunter Jonah Hex and a man calling himself
“Vandal Savage.” (Timm and Altieri’s “Showdown,” Batman the Animated
Series, 1999). As demonstrated in “An Extraordinary Family
of the Wold West,” this individual was not the fictional “Vandal Savage,”
but in all likelihood the very real and very dangerous Kane.
Intriguingly, the conflict between Hex and Kane took place over
(and at one point on top of) a technologically-advanced dirigible.
The science of this dirigible was significantly inferior to the technology
which Captain Mors used in his later aircraft, but it may be that Mors
took some of Kane’s technology for his own crafts. Certainly the aircraft
which Mors used in his encounter with Alaska-Jim was inferior to Mors’
The Canadian Secret Service Agency in which Alaska-Jim
served would later produce a much more celebrated agent: John Thibault,
better known as IXE-13. (Pierre Saurel’s Les Aventures
Etranges de L'Agent IXE-13, L'As des Espions Canadiens #1-960,
c. 1870-1873. Laura de Guéran, the
intimate of numerous explorers (including Overweg, Speke, Richardson,
Vogel, and Schweinfurth) and the wife of the celebrated and wealthy
French explorer the Baron de Guéran, is told that her husband
has disappeared somewhere in Egypt. She mourns for a year's time,
and then gathers together three of her best friends and announces
that she is traveling to Egypt to find her husband's remains and discover
why he was killed. Two of the men go with her, and the trio travel through
Saharan Africa and across Sub-Saharan Africa. They encounter enemy
tribes, rampaging elephants, and slavers, and survive abandonment by
their native guides. After Laura and her friends discover that Laura's
husband might still be alive in a country on the southeast coast of Africa,
they trek there, picking up an army of native warriors on the way (their
king falls in love with Laura and is persuaded to accompany her south). They
eventually find the Baron, who has been made the lover/prisoner of the beautiful,
powerful, and majestic queen Walinda, a “black Venus” in charge of a great
army of ferocious Amazon warriors. Laura’s forces defeat Walinda’s army
in pitched battle. The Baron attempts to escape from Walinda, but she falls
on him with her spiked armor and badly wounds him. Walinda is captured by
Laura. Walinda tries to kill Laura, to regain the Baron (who she is in love
with), but she kills the Baron instead and then drowns herself out of grief.
The group returns to Paris and Laura marries the member of the trio who did
not accompany her to Africa. (Adolphe Belot's A Parisian Sultana,
c. 1870-c. 1880. Pierre Biscard, a cowboy
of French origin, emigrates to the American frontier (perhaps inspired
by the earlier example of Vallentine Guillois) and achieves
many minor triumphs and victories. (Jean Petithuguenin's Rouges
et Blancs #1-80, 1913-1914).
A German immigrant recently arrived in New York City,
Fritz Stagart, finds that America is far more dangerous than
the press in Germany (and the colporteur novels of individuals
like Old Shatterhand) has described. He begins solving crimes
and fighting evil, both in the cities of the Eastern seaboard and on
the western frontier. His home remains New York City, however. (Max
Landenburg’s Fritz Stagarts Abenteuer #1-80, 1909-1910).
Winoga (I), a noble native chief, is assisted in his fight against
evil by two frontier adventurers who had both recently emigrated
from Italy: Tom Bartlett and Iron Fist. (Winoga, Occhi
di Falco, 1920-1930, and Pugno di Ferro e Tom Bartlett, Gli
Amici di Winoga, 1934).
c. 1870-c. 1890. A Mexican of noble Spanish descent,
Don César de Echagüe, pretends to be a useless fop
by day. By night he becomes the heroic do-gooder and enemy of evil,
the Coyote. (Jose Mallorqui's Coyote novels, beginning with
El Coyote, 1943).
Following the destruction of his ranch by a group of
savage natives, Tex Bulwer, a frontiersman from Germany,
begins wandering around the Western frontier. He has a long series
of minor victories helping others and discovering treasure. (Tex
Bulwer, Abenteuer in Wilden Westen, #1-80, 1936-1938).
A German youth, Jürgen Peters, goes to sea
as a boy. He sails before the mast on the ship Stürmvogel
(Storm Bird) for two decades. His captain is Kapitan Schlüter
and his best friend is the Stürmvogel's helmsman, Oll Kopp,
and together they have adventures around the world, some of them verging
on the fantastic. (Jürgen Peters der Schiffsjunge #1-448,
1870-1909. The Italian policeman John Siloch
begins a decades-long series of triumphs as a crime-solver, both
as a policeman and later as a private detective in Rome. He is assisted
by police Commissioner Clark. (Antonio G. Quattrini’s John Siloch,
il più grande poliziotto del mondo #1-20, 1909). Later researchers
would note Siloch’s similarities to Sherlock Holmes, and in
the 1890s and 1900s Siloch was billed as “the Sherlock Holmes of Italy,”
but as Siloch’s biographer pointed out, Siloch began his work over a
decade before Holmes made his debut. As has been noted in the “Great Detective Syndrome”
article, the similarity between Siloch and Holmes resulted from Sherlock
Holmes visit to Siloch in 1871, to learn what he could from Siloch’s
methods. (See also 1909 below).
c. 1875-c. 1890. A German adventurer on the American
frontier becomes known as Sturmvögel, the “storm bird,”
for his tendency to appear in a town just as the storm of evil is
about to break. With the help of his native friend, Old Grey, Sturmvögel
fights wickedness and helps the innocent from Canada to Mexico. On
occasion he aids his friend Alaska-Jim. (Winkler and Barthel’s
Sturmvögel, Mit Buchse und Tobbogan durch die Arktis #1-82,
1875. Ernest Fandorin, a Russian government
clerk, begins solving crimes as a sidelight. (Boris Akunin's Fandorin novels,
beginning with The Winter Queen, 2003).
1877. A private investigator from America, William
Dow, begins investigating a series of crimes in Paris. (Léon
René Delmas’ William Dow novels, beginning with Le No.
13 de la rue Marlot, 1877).
1879. An old raven, Dudu, helps a French
girl, communicating with her in reality and in her dreams. (Mrs.
Molesworth’s The Tapestry Room, 1879).
c. 1880-c. 1890. A Dutch diplomat, Baron Felix
Amella, succeeds at a series of high-level political intrigues
throughout the decade, including behind-the-scenes involvement in the
Boulanger Crisis (see Monsieur Sabin below). On occasion, when
the situation calls for it, Baron Amella engages in a little discreet
second-story burglary or even gentlemanly blackmail (all for honorable
ends, of course). (Achter de Scherman).
The white head of the government “Indian Police,” Colonel
Longarm, fights a series of evil natives while protecting the
good ones, both on the American frontier and in the more settled areas
east of the Mississippi River. He also fights vicious white men,
pirates, the Mafia, and so on. (Oberst Longarm #1-15, 1906-1907).
c. 1880-c. 1900. The last descendant of the noble
Mohican tribe, Winoga (II), leaves his ancestral homelands
and emigrates west, wandering around the American frontier and helping
natives and Anglos as he finds them. Late in the 1880s he found the
grave and weapons of his great-great-grandfather, Chingachgook.
(Winoga, der Letzte Mohikaner #1-90, 1921-1924).
It is a part of recorded history that Winoga was the
last of the Mohicans. (It is not recorded that he had fathered any
children). But the link between Winoga and Chingachgook is obscured.
It is possible that Chingachgook had a second biological son that
his biographer, James Fennimore Cooper, never knew about, although
it is doubtful that Chingachgook would have concealed such a fact
from his adopted son, Natty “Hawkeye” Bumppo. It is more likely
that Chingachgook’s son, Uncas, fathered a son before his death,
perhaps with Cora Munroe, and that Cooper, out of a personal dislike
for miscegenation if Uncas’ lover was white or simply out of respect
for Chingachgook, did not mention this fact. (James Fenimore James Fenimore
Cooper’s The Last of the Mohicans, 1826).
c. 1880-c. 1910. Gavur Memet begins active
duty in Istanbul. Memet is a policeman, active for the government of Sultan
Abdülhamit II as a special agent, both solving crimes and defeating
foreign spies, both within Turkey and outside of it. (Ziya Sakir's Gavur
Memet novels, beginning with Mahmut Sevket Pasa, 1939).
1882. For a brief time a woman known as La
Marmoset, “the Detective Queen,” becomes the most famous detective,
male or female, in all of France. (Albert W. Aiken’s “La Marmoset,
the Detective Queen; or, The Lost Heir of Morel,” 1882).
An Italian Priest, whose name American history
books has not recorded, works in the worst parts of Rome, solving
crimes and saving souls. A former policeman, he is particularly skilled
at catching criminals. (Mario Giudice’s Un precursore di Sherlock
Holmes – Ambienti romani, 1929). The Priest’s habits, appearance,
and crime-solving methods are markedly similar to Sherlock Holmes’,
and it is likely that the Priest was another sufferer from the "Great Detective Syndrome."
There is no historical record of this, but it is possible
that the English crime-solving priest, Father Brown, studied
under the Priest, however temporarily, during a visit to Rome before
Brown assumed his duties in England. (G.K. Chesteron’s Father Brown
1886-1889. General Georges Boulanger, the protégé
of Georges Celemenceau, becomes minister of war in France and begins
to receive significant support, both popular and from the military.
He begins conniving and scheming to take ultimate power in France,
but before he can do so, in January, 1889, he is forced into exile by
the French government. As Boulanger is maneuvering, his greatest supporter,
Monsieur Sabin, is working behind the scenes to resurrect the
French Monarchy. Sabin’s patrons finally force him to abandon Boulanger,
and Sabin retires to western Massachusetts. (E. Phillips Oppenheim’s
Mysterious Mister Sabin, 1898, and The Yellow Ribbon,
1886. Robert Easterley and Jack Wilbraham, two
Welsh teenagers, hear stories about alien abductions which reportedly
have been taking place in Wales for centuries. Easterley then witnesses
an abduction. (Robert Potter's The Germ Growers, 1892).
1887. An college student in Florence known only
as Alberto C. is suffering despair from bad grades and a
love affair gone awry. He quits his literary studies and takes up
chemistry, which he finds more real and less imaginary than love. After
playing around with various chemical combinations Alberto accidentally
mixes up a paint which nullifies gravity. Alberto and his friend Professor
Sandrelli build a ship, which they call the Casa Volante, or “Flying
House.” They travel around the world in it, seeing Africa and the Pacific
Ocean, and then go into space. Alberto and Professor Sandrelli eventually
return to Earth, landing the ship in a sea near the North Pole, where
it sinks. (Ulisse Grifoni’s Dalla Terra alle Stelle, 1887).
Tony, a clever and tough man, begins working for
the Third Republic against the spies of Kaiser Wilhelm II. He moves
on to police work, continuing to wage war on spies as well as ordinary
criminals. He involves himself in l’affaire Dreyfus and occasionally
fights more fantastic enemies, including a cult which could control
people’s spirits from long-distance. (Gabriel Bernard’s Les Mystères
de la cour de Berlin #1-33, 1916-1917, and Pages de gloire ou
les aventures de Tony).
One of those who Tony is responsible for defeating is
a large young man who is the leader of a gang of spies working for
the Germans. Tony is not wholly responsible for the capture of the
gang, however; one of the gang betrayed the gang to Tony. The police surrounded
the gang’s headquarters, a building in one of Paris’ slums, and attempted
to storm the building. A firefight followed, leading to the building
catching on fire, and all but two members of the gang were captured or
killed. The two who were not were the gang’s leader and his most trusted
assistant, who pulled the badly wounded gang leader from the flaming
ruins of the building. The gang leader recovered, although his legs were
permanently damaged, and emigrated to America, where he rebuilt his criminal
organization and, three decades later, became infamous as The Spider.
(Johnston McCulley’s Spider stories, beginning with “The Spider’s Den,”
1888. “Conrad Klotz,” a German professor who as demonstrated elsewhere
may have been the infamous Doctor Moreau, passes on the
secret of accelerated evolution. Kenneth Stafford, an American, uses
the knowledge gained from “Klotz” to create the supercanine Solarion.
(Edgar Fawcett’s Solarion, 1889).
1890-1905. Georges Manolescu, a Hungarian
thief, has a successful, fifteen-year-long career as a master thief.
During these years he jousts with many of the most successful and
famous detectives in Europe, including Nat Pinkerton. He spends
most of his time away from his wife, but he does visit her enough to
impregnate her. The child grows up to become the famous detective John
Kling, who is as law-abiding as his father was crooked. (Manolescu,
der Prinz von Dieb #1-27, 1928).
1890-1915. Dagobert Trostler gains fame
as a detective in Vienna. He is a sufferer from the “Great Detective Syndrome,”
but was secure enough in himself not to pretend to be Sherlock
Holmes, and was successful in Vienna for a generation. He disappears
during World War One during a spy mission. (“Balduin Groller”/Adalbert
Goldscheider’s Dagobert Trostler stories, beginning in 1890).
c. 1890-1934. As a seventeen-year-old German Hans
Stosch-Sarrasani begins a lifetime of high adventure which
will end only with his death as a sixty-one-year-old, in 1934. History
records that the Bavarian Stosch-Sarrasani would achieve fame primarily
as a circus clown, debuting in 1892 as an unusual "animal clown" and
gaining enough fame to be able to open his own Circus Sarrasani in 1902.
The Circus Sarrasani toured Europe to acclaim from 1907-1911, Denmark
during the war in 1915, and then South America from 1923-1925. By 1929
the Circus Sarrasani was the largest and most renowned circus in Europe.
But the rise to power of the Nazi party in Germany would interrupt Stosch-Sarrasani's
success, as he was opposed to their policies. In 1932 the Circus was
damaged by a fire of mysterious origin in Antwerp. From 1934-1936 Stosch-Sarrasani
toured South America, using the tour as cover by which to smuggle Jews
out of South America. He was granted Brazilian citizenship in 1934
and died later that year.
Or so most history books record. But Stosch-Sarrasani
was active in a field quite separate and different from that of clowns
and the circus, a field which attracted much less attention but which
did far more good. Beginning in 1890, Stosch-Sarrasani spent fully half
his life fighting evil, both in Europe and in the Americas. Many of his
most notable exploits took place on the American frontier, where he teamed
up with Billy Jenkins, but in many other cases he worked by himself.
He was a crack shot and able cowboy, skills he used for the betterment
of others. When his circus moved into a new location, he would investigate
the area, and if there were evils present there, he would destroy them.
He was active fighting Apaches in America, criminals in tea-houses in Japan,
murder in hunting parties in the Indian state of Baradhot, and evil Cossacks
in the Caucasus. (Hans Stosch-Sarrasini #1-80, 1923-1924, and
But his work as an adventurer is relatively well-documented
compared to his work as a kind of mentor to what might be called the
"Celluloid Adventurers," for more on which see Note #7.
1890. The ghost of Medea da Carpi (see
above, 1568-1582) returns to destroy an unwary student. (Vernon
Lee’s “Amour Dure”).
1891. The formation of the Pan-German League arouses
German patriotism among both industrialists and academics. One of
those, Dr. Ten Brinken, is insane and decides to create a superwoman
to serve Germany and the Kaiser. Following the directions handed
down from ancient times, he scrapes the ground beneath a freshly hanged
man and uses the semen gathered thereby to impregnate a prostitute. The
child, Alraune, grows up to be beautiful and superhumanly powerful,
but also quite evil, and all who become involved with her as an adult,
in the 1910s, come to a bad end. (Hans Heinz Ewer’s Geschichte eines
lebenden Wesens, 1911).
Robert Easterley and Jack Wilbraham graduate
from Oxford and go to Australia to become sheep and cattle farmers.
While trekking across the Kimberleys, the plateau region of northern Western
Australia, they discover the base of the aliens who have been abducting
Welshmen (see 1886 above). The human-looking aliens are led by a particularly
evil being who calls himself "Signor Davelli." Davelli claims that
his race has been warring on God, who Davelli calls "the Infinite One,"
for centuries, and that Earth has been used as the location for the proxy
war between Davelli's race and God. Davelli and the aliens on Earth
have greatly advanced technology and superhuman abilities, including
mind control, and intend to conquer the Earth and enslave humanity through
their technology, including their bioengineered plagues, and their mind
control. But when Davelli attempts to take control of Easterley's mind
God intervenes and protects Easterley, and then another alien race, led
by a creature calling himself "Leäfar," appears and destroys the alien
base, driving Davelli and his followers away from Earth. (Robert Potter's
The Germ Growers).
The attempt by "Davelli" and his followers to conquer the
Earth is the first Martian invasion of the 1890s. Mars is of course
a patchwork mosaic of aggressive, martial races, who war on each other
as often as they war on non-Martians, and as our colleage Dr. Lofficier
has pointed out, the involvement of Mars and Earth goes back centuries
and is a complex one filled with war more often than peace. But not
all of the Martian races are evil. Some, like the Sorns, are peaceful
and well-inclined, and the action by "Leäfar" is one of the few recorded
appearances on Earth by the Sorns. (C.S. Lewis' Out of the Silent
Planet, 1938). The Sorns would take at least one further action
against their Martian fellows, in 1898. (Moore & O'Neill's League
of Extraordinary Gentlemen v2, 2003). "Davelli" and his followers
would make one more attempt to invade Earth later in the decade. (see
1892-1922. A German reporter
for a Berlin newspaper, working under the pseudonym of “Mr. Nobody,” begins
tracking down international stories, no matter how fantastic they are. (Robert
Kraft’s Nobody - 30 Jahre im Dienste einer Weltzeitung #1-17, 1922).
1892. A Bavarian inventor, Nicholaus Geibel,
creates a mechanical man, Lieutenant Fritz, in an attempt to provide
his daughter and her friends with the ideal dancing partner. The
attempt is a horrible failure, and Lt. Fritz kills his partner.
(Jerome K. Jerome’s “The Dancing Partner,” 1893).
1893-c.1910. Joseph Müller gains fame
in Vienna, first as a policeman and then as a private detective.
Although a “Great Detective
Syndrome” sufferer, Müller displays a level of warmth and
compassion that fellow GDS victims and even Sherlock Holmes
himself never possessed, and is correspondingly beloved by the Viennese.
(Auguste Gröner’s Joseph Müller stories, beginning with
Die Goldene Kugel, 1893). There is no evidence that Müller
and Dagobert Trostler ever met, either as adversaries or allies.
1893. Fridolf Hammar gains fame in Sweden
as a detective. His home city is Stockholm, and he usually works there,
assisted by police Commissioner S., but on occasion he is called
upon to practice his skills in Norway or Finland or Denmark. He is
one of many “Great Detective
Syndrome” sufferers to appear during this decade. (“Prins Pierre”/Johan
Frederik Lindholm’s Stockholmsdetektiven, 1893).
c. 1895-c. 1910. A German detective known only
as Victor gains fame for his work solving crimes in Cologne.
Like his fellow German Dagobert Trostler (see above) Victor
is a “Great Detective Syndrome”
sufferer, but there is no evidence that Victor and Trostler ever
met each other or Sherlock Holmes himself. (Maximilian Böttcher’s
Victor stories, beginning with “Der Detektiv,” 1899).
1895. The Baronesse von Brannburg opens a one-woman
detective agency in Brandenburg and becomes famous around the country
as "Wanda of Brannburg, Germany's Master Detective." Her career
is intense, albeit not particularly long-lasting. She fights criminals
throughout Germany, from Berlin to Hamburg (where she overthrew
the city's crimelord), and across Europe. In Budapest she uncovered
the secret of the "vice caves." In Frankfurt she caught a serial killer,
and in Munich she fought a group of corrupt Masons. (Wanda von Brannburg
1896. Two members
of the French Foreign Legion discover a lost city, calling itself "Atlantis,"
ruled by the cruel Queen Antinéa. (Pierre Benoit's L'Atlantide,
1919). For more on Queen Antinéa, please consult Dr. Lofficier's dossier
1897-c. 1910. Following the announcement of the
discovery of gold in the Klondike, men and women from around the
world flock to the region hoping to strike it rich. One of them is an
Italian man, Joe Milton. He finds gold, but also finds adventure
while helping other men and women to survive and prosper in the otherwise
brutal area. (Joe Milton, Il Cercatore d'Oro del Klondike).
1897. Axel Johnson
begins a successful career as a police officer in Denmark. Working out
of Copenhagen, Johnson suffers from the “Great Detective Syndrome”
but is otherwise independent and very competent. At different times
during his career he is described as "A Danish Lecoq" and "A Danish Sherlock
Holmes." (C. Andersen's En Dansk Lecoq, 1897, and Genoptrykt som En Dansk Sherlock Holmes,
Karl Monk begins a short, if successful, career as a
detective in Norway. A former policeman and a “Great Detective Syndrome”
sufferer, there is no evidence that Monk ever met Sherlock Holmes.
("Christian Sparre"/Fredrik Viller's Kaptein Monks oplevelser,
A balloon expedition racing to the North Pole discovers a
Martian base on the North Pole and a Martian orbital station
above the North Pole. The Martians have advanced technology and claim
to be well-inclined toward humans and Earth, but their ultimate goal
is the conquest of Earth. They are eventually defeated and driven off
Earth. (Kurd Lasswitz's Auf Zwei Planeten, 1897) The Martians
appear to be human, but no one who took part in the brief destruction
of the Martian base was aware of Robert Easterley and Jack Wilbraham's
1891 adventure in Australia, or they would have recognized that these Martians
were the same race as Signor Davelli's, and that this was a repeat
attempt to conquer the Earth.
1898-1908. A “Great Detective Syndrome”
sufferer takes the name of "Sherlock Ol-mes" and begins working
as a consulting detective in Madrid. His cases often take him to America.
(The "Sherlock Ol-mes" stories).
1898. One of the most notorious of all mad surgeons,
Doctor Armand Caresco, begins work in France, using living humans
as subjects for his vivisection experiments. (André Couvreur's Le
Mal Nécessaire, 1899). (see also 1904).
The second defeat of an invasion from Mars, and the humans' destruction
of the Martian space station, brought about an immediate, full-scale
attack from Mars to Earth. This invasion was also a failure. (H.G. Wells'
The War of the Worlds, 1898).
1899. Count Leo V. Hagen, a German-American,
reports on his adventures around the world for a German newspaper.
(Robert Kraft's Aus allen Welttheilen #1-5, 1899).
An unfortunate, if not particularly well-inclined, Swedish
peasant woman discovers that the grave of King Atle is neither
quiet nor kind to the cruel. (Selma Lagerlöf's “The King’s Grave,”
1900. Newton Moore is a clever, resourceful
and tough agent of the “Secret Service Fund,” which works out of
the British War Office. Moore is one of the Fund's best agents and
is assigned by his superior Sir George Morley to handle the hardest and
hottest cases. Moore has a number of friends, contacts, and informants
in a wide range of professions, and he uses them to help him solve the
cases. His cases take him around the world, from Russia, Scotland and Germany
to the countries of “Contigua” and “Marenna.” Moore’s enemies are those
of the Empire itself: Russia and Germany, both of which scheme against
Great Britain and employ spies against it. The head of Germany’s intelligence
department is Emile Nobel, the “great, gross German” who is the
“chief rascal in the Rogues' Gallery of Europe.” Nobel is a deaf, squat,
toad-like man who is a brilliant chemist and is responsible for many
murders, “all strictly in the way of business.” Nobel succeeds in stealing
the plans to a recoilless, frictionless rifle that propels bullets by
means of “liquid air” and has a magazine of 400 projectiles. Moore, showing
ingenuity and physical stamina, succeeds in taking the rifle and the plans
away from Nobel, although Nobel manages to escape capture. (Fred M. White's
Newton Moore stories, beginning with “By Woman’s Wit,” July 1900).
There is little historical evidence about the existence
of a "Secret Service Fund," even as a minor subset of MI-6. It is
more likely that the "Secret Service Fund" was a front so that Moore,
if captured, could not betray anything of importance, and that Sir
George Morley worked for the Diogenes Club.
Unknown Members of the Wold Newton Family Tree.