American Detective Fiction    Prior to July 1891

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  Published in
Burton’s Gentleman’s Magazine, January 1839.
Unpublished Passages
Vidocq, The French Minister of Police

No. V
The Strange Discovery

by J.M.B.
  accommodate her. To this Madame Launay replied, she had no objection for a few days, as Julie, her waiting woman, could sleep in the same room, and when opportunity offered they might be better accommodated. The hostess curtsied assent, and Madame Launay was shown to her apartment, where, after partaking of some slight refreshment, she, with her maid, very soon retired to their separate beds, and in profound sleep forgot the fatigues of their journey, and the comparative inconvenience of their lodgings.

In the middle of the night Julie awoke, and finding her mouth parched from the still feverish excitement of the journey, got out of bed to obtain a draught of water from the dressing table. As Madame Launay always slept with a candle in her room, she had no difficulty in finding the water, and was returning into bed when her eye fell upon a handsome travelling cloak, which was lying by the bedside of her mistress. This Julie had . . .


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    There was, some few years ago, in one of the streets leading from the rue St. Honore, an hotel known by the name of the Renard d’Or. It does not exist at the present day, but at the time I am speaking of was much frequented by persons from the south of France, who came to Paris with the intention of stopping a few days. Amongst the persons who were in the habit of residing there, during their stay in our metropolis, was a Madame Launay, the widow of a rich banker of Bordeaux, who came every year for the purpose of receiving her dividends, and transacting such other business as circumstances might require. On her arrival late one evening from Bordeaux, she was informed, by the landlady of the Renard d’Or, with a profusion of apologies, that unless Madame would for once put up with a small room, containing two beds, she should be unable to    




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