Did Censorship Kill the Shudder Pulps? Timeline of Shudder Pulp History

Did Censorship Kill the Shudder Pulps? Conclusion
Did Censorship Kill the Shudder Pulps? The National Organization for Decent Literature Was Frightfully Active in 1943

Bacchus provides a chronological summary of shudder pulp history.

A few of the most key events in the history of the shudder pulps, arranged chronologically:

  • 1933 — Dime Detective Magazine begins (Popular Publications) begins publication
  • 1934 — Terror Tales (Popular Publications) begins publication
  • 1934 — Horror Stories (Popular Publications) begins publication
  • 1934 — Spicy Detective Stories (Modern Publications, later Culture Publications) begins publication
  • 1934 — Spicy Adventure Stories (Modern Publications, later Culture Publications) begins publication
  • 1934 — Spicy Mystery Stories (Modern Publications, later Culture Publications) begins publication
  • 1934 — Snappy Adventure Stories (Modern Publications, later Culture Publications) begins publication
  • 1934 — Snappy Detective Stories (Modern Publications, later Culture Publications) begins publication
  • 1934 — Snappy Mystery Stories (Modern Publications, later Culture Publications) begins publication
  • 1934 — March — 59 magazines temporarily banned from sale in NYC newsstands by Mayor La Guardia, according to Time. National circulation of 11 popular titles: 30,000.
  • 1935 — Horror Stories (Popular Publications) begins publication
  • 1937 — Detective Short Stories (Goodman, later Marvel) begins publication
  • 1938 — Complete Detective (Goodman, later Marvel) begins publication
  • 1938 — Mystery Tales (Goodman, later Marvel) begins publication
  • 1938 — April — 1.58 million horror pulps sold in America, according to critic Bruce Henry, losing his shit in conservative magazine The American Mercury
  • 1938 — Mayor La Guardia seems to have indulged one of his periodic impulses toward censorship, although details are unavailable; see “The Blue-Nosed Mayor”
  • 1938 — Catholic pressure group National Organization For Decent Literature founded
  • 1940Startling Mystery (Popular Publications) begins and ends publication
  • 1940Sinister Stories (Popular Publications) begins and ends publication
  • 1940 — MayMystery Tales ends publication.
  • 1941 — AprilUncanny Stories (Goodman, later Marvel) begins and ends publication)
  • 1941 — “Actions of blue-nosed watchdogs help propel weird menace magazines from market” per Don Hutchison essay; details not specified.
  • 1941 — March Terror Tales (Popular Publications) ends publication
  • 1941 — April Horror Stories (Popular Publications) ends publication
  • 1942 — April — The infamous “Mayor La Guardia Sees Spicy Mystery” anecdote, resulting, depending on whose account you credit, in the final end of Spicy Mystery, or merely its sale in NYC under counters or without covers
  • 1942Spicy Adventure, Spicy Detective, Spicy Mystery and Spicy Western Stories (all from Culture Publications) cease publication, to reappear in early 1943 as the toned-down Speed Adventure, Speed Detective, Speed Mystery and Speed Western Stories from Trojan Publishing Company

One thought on “Did Censorship Kill the Shudder Pulps? Timeline of Shudder Pulp History

  1. I was expecting some points on the shudder pulps being damaged as much by the mass enlistment of their main demographic into the military. But your timeline shows they were already running out of gas on the eve of the war. I guess it happens that there is rarely one single cause of a disaster. Shakey mail permits + LaGuardia + civic blue stockings + Pearl Harbor all had their parts to play.

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