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American Detective Fiction    Prior to July 1891

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  Published in
Experiences of a Real Detective by Inspector F.
Edited by “Walters,” author of Recollections of a Police Officer, Leonard Harlowe, etc.
London: Ward, Lock, & Tyler, 1862. 190-219.
 
Bigamy and Child-Stealing
by Inspector F.

  officer is going to groom horses in the New Forest for three or four months?”
 
“I don’t know, I’m sure. You had better call upon Mr. Bence and ascertain, taking this note with you. It’s a deuce of an in-and-out case of bigamy, child-stealing, and I don’t know what besides, and immediate attention to the affair is commanded. You must see Mr. Bence without delay. He is waiting at his office.”
 
“Oh, you are the detective officer whose services I have applied for,” said Mr. Bence, glancing first at me, next at a couple of lines which the inspector had written at the foot of his own note. “Sit down, I shall be disengaged in two or three minutes, and we will go into the affair.”
 
Mr. Bence finished a letter he was writing, dispatched it, gave orders that he was not to be disturbed whilst I was with him, settled himself in his leather fauteuil, and hooking his two thumbs into his waistcoat armholes, . . .

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    “LYNDHURST! Lyndhurst! Who knows Lyndhurst?” exclaimed the head superintendent at Scotland Yard, who had just opened a note brought by post, addressing a lot of us detectives. “Who knows Lyndhurst?”
 
“Lord Lyndhurst?”
 
“Bosh! A place somewhere in Hampshire. There’s a long job there for one of you—three or four months of it, perhaps, or more, Lawyer Bence, of New-square, intimates.”
 
“I have never been there,” said I; “but I know it’s in the heart of the New Forest.”
 
“In the heart of the New Forest, eh? Well, I think you had better take the affair in hand; a long spell in the heart of the New Forest would only suit a man without encumbrances; besides, you can groom horses, I know, a faculty which Mr. Bence thinks may come into advantageous play.”

“Does Mr. Bence, then, suppose a detective

   

 

 

 
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