Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Father Of Sam Spade...!

As many of you know, I really like mystery stories.

This particular author probably did more for the hard nose mystery stories and heroes than anyone I know of. His characters are still familiar to many folks, especially mystery lovers! Takes a heck of an imagination to be a good story teller, don't you think? Especially mystery stories!

Jan 10, 1961:
Dashiell Hammett dies

Dashiell Hammett, author of The Maltese Falcon, dies on this day in 1961.

Hammett was born in Maryland on May 27, 1894. He left school at age 13 and took a series of low-paying jobs, eventually landing at Pinkerton's detective agency. He worked as a detective for eight years and turned his experiences into fiction that set the mold for later writers like Raymond Chandler. Hammett's deadpan description of violent or emotional events came to be known as the "hard-boiled" style of detective fiction.

Hammett published short stories in his characteristic deadpan style, starting in 1929 with Fly Paper. He published two novels in the same style that year, Red Harvest and The Dain Curse. The following year, he published The Maltese Falcon, which introduced detective Sam Spade. The novel was filmed three times: once in 1931; once in 1936 under the title Satan Met a Lady, starring Bette Davis; and again in1941, starring Humphrey Bogart.

Hammett became involved with playwright Lillian Hellman (author of The Children's Hour in 1934 and The Little Foxes in 1939), who served as the model for Nora Charles in his 1934 comic mystery The Thin Man. The book was made into a movie the same year, starring William Powell and Myrna Loy, and the characters of Nick and Nora Charles inspired several sequel films. Hammett and Hellman remained romantically involved until Hammett's death in 1961.

Writers like Hammett were the founders and fathers of most all of the tough cops, hardened private detectives, and two timing females we find in most detective stories even today! Long live Sam Spade!

It's still raining this morning, so let's have our coffee in the kitchen, OK?

4 comments:

Sixbears said...

All great stuff! I don't know how many hours of entertainment he provided me -directly and indirectly. Not to many people create a whole class of literature and because of that, film. Good fun!

JOJO said...

I remember hearing about Sam Spade, I can't think if I ever read any of his books. But I do remember the Thin Man, I was very young.

Well I hope all this rain is going to help clear up your drought.
I will have a refill thank you.

Dizzy-Dick said...

He had quite a career, didn't know that he had worked for the Pinkerton's. He died the same year I graduated from high school.

HermitJim said...

Hey Sixbears...
Takes a heck of a talent and a good imagination!

A lot of his books turned into movies are still shown on TCM channel! Maltese Falcon and all the other Sam Spade movies...along with my favorites, The Thin Man series!

Just gotta love 'em! Hey, thanks for coming by today!


Hey JoJo...
Sam Spade was probably his most well known character.

I have a lot of respect for good writers, always wanted to be one myself!

Thanks so much for coming by this morning!


Hey Dizzy...
Quite a career, indeed! Very interesting man!

I didn't know you graduated in '61! Heck, I was right behind you in '63!

Wow...has it really been that long?

Thanks for coming by this morning, my friend!