dime novels

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dime novels,

swift-moving, thrilling novels, mainly about the American Revolution, the frontier period, and the Civil War. The books were first sold in 1860 for 10 cents by the firm of Beadle and Adams. The earliest was Malaeska: The Indian Wife of the White Hunter (1860), by Anne Stephens, which is said to have sold 300,000 copies in the first year; similar novels sold by the thousands throughout the country and especially in the Civil War camps. Such men as Bruin Adams, Col. Mayne Reid, Col. Prentiss Ingraham, W. F. Cody, and Ned BuntlineBuntline, Ned
, pseud. of Edward Zane Carroll Judson,
1823–86, American adventurer and writer. In 1845 he founded in Nashville Ned Buntline's Own, a sensational magazine.
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 wrote of their own adventures. Among the most famous series were those about Deadwood Dick, by Edward L. Wheeler, and those about Nick CarterCarter, Nick,
fictional detective character in dime novels said to have been created by J. R. Coryell in the 1880s. The firm of Street & Smith, New York City, published over 1,000 stories about Nick Carter, written variously by F. V. R. Dey, E. T. Sawyer, G. C.
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. After 1880, imitators entered the field with lurid stories that dealt in blood and thunder. Their popularity lasted until the 1890s, when they began to be replaced by pulp magazines, comic strips, and series of stories such as those about the Rover Boys and Frank Merriwell.


See E. Pearson, Dime Novels (1929); A. Johannsen, The House of Beadle and Adams and its Dime and Nickel Novels (3 vol., 1962).

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References in periodicals archive ?
The whole novel offers a big gray area for the reader to explore as its nooks and crannies are plentiful and deep enough but they do not take away from the action, which was the primary reason people bought dime novels. The action gives rise to the rumors about the participants in the robberies and chases, fueling people's imaginations and putting the frontiersmen of those times, whether on the side of law or not, in legends whose stories will be told in years and even centuries to come, regardless of the amount of truth involved.
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