The Air at the Top of the Bottle

The Ullage Group header image 1

Entries Tagged as 'Forteana'

Little Blue Books by Forteans (6): Scott Nearing

October 23rd, 2013 · 2 Comments

Scott Nearing became an Honorary Founder of the Fortean Society, replacing Alexander Woollcott.  Woollcott had left early in 1942, presumably because he liked Fort, but didn’t get along with Thayer.  Thayer’s attacks on Roosevelt may have nettled him too, as he was an FDR fan.  Nearing was a very different kind of character, a life-long […]

[Read more →]

Tags: Forteana

Little Blue Books by Forteans (5): T. Swann Harding

September 3rd, 2013 · 2 Comments

T. Swann Harding replaced Harry Elmer Barnes as a Founder of the Fortean Society.  As usual, I don’t know how active he was.  His papers, now in the Library of Congress, contain correspondence with Thayer, and he did contribute to Doubt, so I assume he was involved more than some of the others. I haven’t […]

[Read more →]

Tags: Books · Forteana

Little Blue Books by Forteans (4): Harry Elmer Barnes

August 27th, 2013 · 2 Comments

I’ve posted the Little Blue Books of Theodore Dreiser, Ben Hecht, and John Cowper Powys.  None of the other Founders (Tiffany Thayer, Harry Leon Wilson, Burton Rascoe, Alexander Woollcott, J. David Stern, Aaron Sussman, Booth Tarkington) wrote for Haldeman-Julius — except one.  That was Harry Elmer Barnes. Barnes quickly disappeared from the Founders’ roster.  He […]

[Read more →]

Tags: Forteana · Literature

LIttle Blue Books by Forteans (3): John Cowper Powys

July 16th, 2013 · 4 Comments

John Cowper Powys was a Founder of the Fortean Society, and professed himself delighted with Fort’s work.  Although remembered today mostly for his fiction, his contributions to the Little Blue Book catalog were all essays.  His first was #112, The Secret of Self Development; it was followed by #414, The Art of Happiness, and #435, […]

[Read more →]

Tags: Ephemera · Forteana

See and Hear Tiffany Thayer!

June 17th, 2013 · No Comments

Tiffany Thayer, aka Elmer Ellsworth, founder of the Fortean Society, publisher of Doubt, writer of memorably sleazy fiction, was in Hollywood throughout much of the ’30s.  Several of his novels were made into reasonably successful movies (particularly Call Her Savage, tailored for Clara Bow).  He had less luck writing screenplays; only a few scenes and […]

[Read more →]

Tags: Forteana

Tiffany Thayer’s Fortean Categories

June 10th, 2013 · 4 Comments

Tiffany Thayer had his own, rather idiosyncratic, ideas about what topics were suitable for the Fortean Society.  In the 56th issue of Doubt (sometime in 1957), he published a list of categories that members were urged to investigate.  The list differs in many ways from contemporary Forteana, particularly in Thayer’s customary mix of social and […]

[Read more →]

Tags: Forteana

Little Blue Books by Forteans (2): Ben Hecht

June 6th, 2013 · No Comments

Ben Hecht declared himself “the first disciple of Charles Fort” in a review of The Book of the Damned,  and used the opportunity to coin the word “Fortean.”  Tiffany Thayer said the took Hecht as a model when he started writing fiction; and Thirteen Men, in particular, seems to aim for Hecht’s distinctive flash. Like […]

[Read more →]

Tags: Forteana · Literature

Little Blue Books by Forteans (1): Theodore Dreiser

June 3rd, 2013 · 9 Comments

The “Little Blue Books” were published by Emanuel Haldeman-Julius from about 1919 to 1947.  They were small, cheaply produced, and sold for around a nickel.  There were over 2000 of them; the exact number, despite diligent scholars, is unknown, since the books were often retitled, assigned new numbers, or replaced by other books. Haldeman-Julius started […]

[Read more →]

Tags: Forteana · Literature

Membership in the Fortean Society

May 28th, 2013 · 10 Comments

The activities of the Fortean Society, apart from Tiffany Thayer’s magazine Doubt, are somewhat unclear.  Perhaps that was intentional; as Thayer said, with his usual bravura, “Many details of Fortean endeavor are necessarily surreptitious, because any activity with the avowed intention of causing men to think for themselves and to cherish self-respect is opposed in […]

[Read more →]

Tags: Ephemera · Forteana

“I never heard of Charlie Fort”

May 22nd, 2013 · No Comments

The Palm Beach Post, September 26, 1937, published a review of the first issue of the Fortean Society Magazine.  The reviewer, E. C. K. (and I have no clue who that is), was impressed by the roster of founders, intrigued by Fort, and puzzled by Thayer.  He or she had also never heard of Fort, […]

[Read more →]

Tags: Forteana · Literature