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Hardy Boys Series

The Hardy Boys series was an offspring from the Dime Novels that began in 1860! The first 58 stories of the Hardy Boys series covered 1927-1979. Then, between 1959 and 1973 the first 38 volumes of this series were systematically revised by individuals who wrote, edited, and revised each book in the series under the collective pen name of Franklin W. Dixon, as part of a project directed by Harriet Adams, Edward Stratemeyer’s daughter.

Of the latter revised series we have: The Sinister Signpost, The Mark on the Door, The Crisscross Shadow, The Yellow Feather Mystery, Footprints Under the Window and The Twisted Claw.

The spines are in good condition with only one of them with soiled edges. One has a bent corner on the cover and they all have some edge wear. But, overall, they are in good vintage condition with no tears, marks or missing pages.


“Dime Novels” originated with the first book in Beadle & Adams Beadle’s Dime Novel series, Maleaska, the Indian Wife of the White Hunter, by Ann S. Stephens, dated June 9, 1860. As became the trend, the printed novel was a reprint of Stephens’s earlier series that had appeared in the Ladies’ Companion magazine in 1839. Roughly 6 ½ inches by 4 ¼ inches and around 100 pages, the first 28 were published in a salmon colored paper wrapper, and were priced for…ten cents.

Later, illustrations were added to the cover and the Beadle’s Dime Novel series ran for 321 issues, with outlandish stories of frontier tales. As the popularity of dime novels increased, the novels were reprinted many times, sometimes with different illustrations on the covers and the stories were often further reprinted in different series and even by different publishers. Like the first dime novel by Ann Stephens, much of the material came from the story papers, which were weekly newspapers only about eight pages and usually costing five or six cents. Starting in the mid 1850s, these immensely popular story papers were the predecessor to our TV series, only some titles running much longer than any of our modern runs. Some ran for over fifty years on a weekly schedule! Popular story papers included The Saturday Journal, Young Men of America, Golden Weekly, Golden Hours, Good News, Happy Days. It was into this setting in 1893 that an Edward Stratemeyer was hired by the popular dime-novel writer Gilbert Patten to write for the Good News publication. Stratemeyer was a pioneer for using the technique of producing long-running, series of books utilizing a team of freelance writers published under a pen name owned by his company – known today as ghost writing. Edward himself wrote in surplus of 1300 books and selling in excess of 500 million copies. He was the one who created the well-known fictional book series: The Hardy Boys, starting in 1927. But, he also created The Rover Boys (starting in 1899), The Bobbsey Twins (starting in 1904), Tom Swift (starting in 1910), and the Nancy Drew series (starting in 1930). The first 58 stories of the Hardy Boys series covered 1927-1979. Then, between 1959 and 1973 the first 38 volumes of this series were systematically revised by individuals who wrote, edited, and revised each book in the series under the collective pen name of Franklin W. Dixon, as part of a project directed by Harriet Adams, Edward Stratemeyer’s daughter.

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