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American Detective Fiction    Prior to July 1891

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  Published in
The New York Ledger, May 25, 1861.
 
A Detective Taken In
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by Sylvanus Cobb, Jr.
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  trader in the country had suffered in the possession of one or more of these bogus promises-to-pay. The flood of counterfeits increased as the weeks passed on, and so nicely executed were they that people began to lose their confidence in all kinds of bank paper.

At this stage of the game it became necessary for the banks to step in and do something; and they did it—they did it for their own salvation. They came together by their representatives, and formed an association for the purpose of breaking up counterfeiting then and in all coming time; and in the hands of an elected commission was left the business of employing such means as might be necessary to the end in view. Intelligence had been received which rendered it certain that the counterfeits were manufactured somewhere in Canada; and after a deal of inquiry and patient investigation, the bank commission not only became assured that Canada was the point of issue, but they also obtained the names of some dozen suspected men against whom the evidence was at least strong enough to warrant their apprehension.

But now, how should these men be found?. . .

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    Our readers may remember the circumstance of the arrest, some eight or ten years ago, of a band of counterfeiters in Canada, and of the capture of a marvelous quantity of tools and implements of the nefarious craft. It may have been over ten years ago, though I am inclined to think it was a later date. However, the newspapers were full of the startling intelligence at the time, and as my story does not depend for its interest or truthfulness upon the exact date, we will not be particular. And, furthermore, if Mr. Sharp should see this bit of gossiping history, I beg that he will not blame me for having written it. He will observe that I have kept his real name out of sight; and so, if he keeps his own counsel, the uninitiated will be none the wiser touching his share in the transaction.

In that other time of which I have spoken the business community of New England was startled by the appearance of new and dangerous counterfeit banknotes. They came, no one could tell whence; but they came in great quantities; and ere long nearly every

   

 

 


 

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