August Derleth sent and received many Christmas cards during his career as a writing, publisher and family man. Christmas cards have become almost an anachromism in today’s world of e-mail, cell phones, and camera phones; somehow they are old fashioned, and expensive with postage charges, and international rates. I called overseas today with a flat rate of 2 cents per minute. A Christmas card would cost a minumum of $1.07 with HST! whereas with a telephone you get immediate feedback, with the give and take of social interaction. Here’s a scan of a card that the Utpatel’s sent to August Derleth in the 1940’s.
Category Archives: Utpatel, Frank
August Derleth’s scrapbook contains many different interesting items, including some woodcuts by Frank Utpatel that I have not seen before. There are two of particular note which I have entitled “The Garden of Eden” and “Auggie and Eve.” I suspect the originals were produced in the 1940s when Frank was at his best. I have censored the latter not so much because it has a single pornographic overtone, but rather to stump the pirates on the internet from appropriateing it the whole and reusing it. These illustrations would make good content for the dustjacket of Annals of Walden West. This volume is long overdue, and August was working on it, at the time of his death. Peter Ruber started to assemble short pirces for the volume in the 1990’s. I received the manuscript directly from April, in 2002, and showed it at the Walden West Festival that year, misplaced it at the Freethinker’s Hall and retrieved it once again in 2004.
It was Bob Weinberg’s idea in the first place. I discussed the project with April Derleth since her father had published two volumes of Whitehead’s fiction in the 1940’s — Jumbee and West India Lights. April agreed and I borrowed the Arkham archival copies of the two books in dustjacket. plan to the art work from the two Arkham editions and add a third volume containing other uncollected stories from the pulps. One story “The People of Pan” that was already collected merited a Weird Tales cover, and that story will be published in the third volume.
Right in the middle of this project I learned that Christopher and Barbara Roden of Ash Tree Press were also publishing the same project in three volumes, and the first volume had already been released. The stories were already in the public domain when Derleth published them, so there was no question of infringing any copyrights.
I telephoned Christopher to advise him that I was proceeding with the same project, and continued to collect the stories. The majority were from Weird Tales and many had been published in various anthologies over the past twenty years. I did not want to abandon this project especially since Arkham House had published the two volumes already, and both had been out of print for years
Before I can project I still have to find three of the stories, and one correspondent has advised there may be some more htat don’t have bibliographic data available which makes them even more difficult to locate. I append the list below, if anyone can assist I would be most grateful.
Want List for Whitehead
1. The Gladstone Bag, (ss) Black Mask Sep 1925
2. Gahd Laff!, (ss) Black Mask Jun 1926
3. The Return of Milt Drennan, (ss) Mystery Stories Jan 1929
4. The Great Circle, (ss) Strange Tales of Mystery and Terror Jun 1932; Bizarre Fantasy Tales Fll 1970
5. Ruby the Kid, (ss) Nickel Western Apr 1933
6 Litrachoor, (pm) The Writer; Omniumgathum, ed. Jonathan Bacon & Steve Troyanovich, Stygian Isle Press 1976;
The Writer Etchings & Odysseys #6 1985