Sunday, May 8, 2016


After reducing its publication schedule from thrice-monthly to twice-monthly in 1926, Adventure's publication dates were the 8th and 23rd of the month for the rest of the year. The magazine actually reverted to thrice-monthly for one last time that December, closing the year with the odd stunt of a December 31 issue followed virtually immediately by a January 1 issue. There was, no doubt, more of a gap between the dates those issues actually arrived on newstands. Anyway, here we are in May, with a decent lineup headed by Arthur O. Friel, introducing the series character Sixto Scott, and Gordon Young, with his long-popular series character Don Everhard. Eyebrows might raise at that name had editor Arthur Sullivant Hoffman not been something of a prude who wouldn't allow the words hell and damn into his pages. Ranking ahead of Young for me are Arthur D. Howden-Smith, here continuing a serial, and top-hand western writer Ernest Haycox. H. Bedford-Jones is here, too, with something simply titled "Son." Leonard H. Nason would make this a major issue if he weren't doing non-fiction this time. George E. Holt contributes a Mohamed Ali story, Bill Adams presumably adds a sea story, and F. St. Mars presumably includes an animal story. Overall a typically strong lineup, and with Adventure back to twice-a-month the typical issues should have more concentrated quality than before, when the standard already was very high.


  1. I don't think that Hoffman was something of a prude because he wouldn't allow hell and damn into the pages of ADVENTURE. He explained his stand in letter column and it was mainly because so many readers complained about the use of such language. It was a different time back then and he once had a letter from a woman who complained about the use of the word "whore" in a Gordon Young story.

    So he developed the habit of using dashes for curse words. Frankly I believe readers used far stronger curses in place of the dashes. I know I did and I'm not talking about hell and damn! Remember the fuss over Clark Gable using the word damn in GONE WITH THE WIND? And that was in 1939.

  2. I appreciate the insight, Walker. I notice that hells and damns started showing up in Adventure after Hoffman was gone, but the magazine may well have shed readers for that reason. Does anyone know whether Adventure under Hoffman was exceptional in its language policy? I see hells and damns and the like in Argosy all the time, but I've only read that magazine from the Thirties forward, so I don't know if was more refined in the Twenties.