The Murder that Influenced the Game Clue

In Christopher Jon Luke Dowgin’s latest book Murder on the Common, we follow everyone’s favorite immortal, Henry Sinclair, as he tries to solve the murder of Joseph White.  This murder influenced the game Clue. In the video, Chris explains the true story of the most infamous murder of the nineteenth century.  Consequently, a murder that reached the highest ranks within our national politics.  One that involved a Supreme Court Justice, the most powerful Senator at the time, and the man who controlled our national bank. Likewise, it inspired many creative endeavors.

The Murder that Influenced The Tell Tale-Heart

The story of a man driven mad by a dead eye was influenced by the ship captain Joseph White’s murder, Salem’s first privateer. Edgar Allan Poe was familiar, along with the rest of the nation, of this murder in Salem. It created the fodder for one of his most famous works. It inspired others as well. For instance, the Parker Brothers would be inspired to change the game Cluedo. They modeled Clue after this murder. Why? You just have to watch the video to find out.

The Locations behind the Murder that Influenced the Game Clue

Follow Chris as he tours Salem and brings you to the locations involved in the murder and the game Clue. Just hit play and enjoy!

Read the first novel within The Sinclair Narratives (from Arkham: Tales from the Flipside) called Murder on the Common Today! Learn more about the real murder that influenced the game Clue! Fall in love with the quirky immortal and read further adventures of Henry Sinclair within the pages of Arkham: Tales from the Flipside!

New Issue of Arkham: Tales from the Flipside

Welcome, in this installment of Arkham: Tales from the Flipside, we bring you into another dimension to read 6 illustrated supernatural tales. Tales of war and murder from the old masters and new. Tales that all play into one another through time and space.

First, we have our anchor story Battle at Cedar Bridge Tavern, the latest in The Sinclair Narratives. A tale about the last battle in the Revolutionary War and the theft of the Ark of the Covenant. This sojourn features Benjamin Franklin and the Jersey Devil. It’s followed by There is a Reaper that investigates what happens to your murder victim after death, written by Charles V. de Velt.

Then we have…Black Colossus by Robert E. Howard featuring Conan the Barbarian who is picked by chance to lead an army for a desperate princess. Up next is Lisa Deschenes’ tale of a strange way to get rid of an ex-husband in Things that go Bump. Further, we present Steve Mullen’s Shock Treatment which explores the idea that our solar system is the insane asylum of the galaxy. After that, we have Beyond Lies the Wub by Philip K. Dick about an intelligent space pig that might end up on the menu.

Six tales that weave in and out of each other. Can you discover all of their secrets of how they fit together? Give it a read and find out.

Buy Arkham: Tales from the Flipside today at Salem House Press!

Arkham: Tales from the Flipside Spring 2020 cover

Illustrator of the Week: John Schoenherr

Dune

John was raised in Queens where he used drawings to communicate with speakers of other languages within his polyglot neighborhood.  Later he went to Pratt University.

Schoenherr may be known best as the original illustrator of the dust jacket art of Dune,[6] a 1965 science fiction novel by Frank Herbert that inaugurated a book series and media franchise.[7] He had previously illustrated the serializations of the novel in Analog, an endeavor which secured him a 1965 Hugo Award for Best Professional Artist.[6][8] He later did the art for the Analog serialization of Herbert’s Children of Dune.[6] In 1978 Berkley Books published The Illustrated Dune, an edition of Dune with 33 black-and-white sketch drawings and 8 full-color paintings by Schoenherr.[6][7] Herbert wrote in 1980 that though he had not spoken to Schoenherr prior to the artist creating the paintings, the author was surprised to find that the artwork appeared exactly as he had imagined its fictional subjects, including sandwormsBaron Harkonnen and the Sardaukar.

Also he gained fame for  Dragonriders of Pern stories by Anne McCaffrey, the 1967/1968 novellas “Weyr Search” and “Dragonrider” (each featured on one Analog cover as well) that were subsequently developed as the novel Dragonflight.[14] Schoenherr’s July 1975 cover for Analog has been cited as influential in the designs for the Star Wars character Chewbacca.

Analog was a magazine in which Dune and the Dragon Riders of Pern first appeared in. Among other stories in the magazine he illustrated was Randall Garrett’s  The Eye’s Have It which is rereleased in Arkham: Tales from the Flipside Winter Edition.

Gallery:

Latest Installment in Battle at Cedar Bridge Tavern

This week Henry and Benjamin Franklin dress up as Mummers on St. Stephen’s Day to sneak into Cedar Bridge Tavern to steal back the Ark of the Covenant.

Come back every Tuesday to read the latest in The Sinclair Narratives featuring everyone’s favorite immortal, Henry Sinclair, and his third-generation Viking ragtag crew.

Click here to read the latest issue!

Henry Sinclair in the mud under a bridge Chris Dowgin posing

 

The Sinclair Narratives: Henry as British General Howe Throws the War for the Americans and Benjamin Franklin is Afraid of the Jersey Devil

Latest Installment of Battle at Cedar Bridge Tavern

Jersey Devil below bridge in the Pines

Everyone’s favorite immortal, Henry Sinclair, has been posing as the dead General William Howe that was in command of the British forces in America. In this installment, we will learn how a few years ago how Howe threw the war for the Americans and was forced to hide in the Pine Barrens of NJ. Also, we learn more about his friendship with Benjamin Franklin and Franklin’s love of the Ark of the Covenant and his personal hatred of the Jersey Devil. Most important of all, we learn how the Ark was stolen from Howe and why…

Come back every Tuesday for another installment of Battle at Cedar Bridge Tavern:

Click here to read the latest in this series!

New Story from The Sinclair Narratives

Battle at Cedar Bridge Tavern

Today we start a new story, Battle at Cedar Bridge Tavern. Henry, everyone’s favorite immortal, finds himself as General William Howe at the last battle of the Revolutionary War in the New Jersey Pine Barrens trying to steal back the Ark of the Covenant. So read on to find out how Henry became the British general who led the war, how he lost the Ark, how he got it back, and what Benjamin Franklin has to do with the Jersey Devil?

Click Here to Read the First Installment!

Henry Sinclair as General William Howe

Latest Installment in the Serial Summer Cottage form Hell

Psychics and Bohemian Grove

This week Henry gets a message from Tesla to meet him near the Mason Lodge to meet Mme. Zaza; who turns out to be an old soul Henry first met 2,000 years ago. Mme. Zaza warns them of strange powerful people who have arrived by train to visit President Taft’s Summer White House at Woodbury Point.

Come back every Tuesday to read another installment of Summer Cottage form Hell featuring everyone’s favorite immortal, Henry Sinclair, and his third-generation Viking ragtag crew. Will Henry and the gang including Teddy Roosevelt, Rough Rider Keno Crowninshield, and Nikola Tesla solve the mysterious death of the man who rented President Taft the property? Come back each week to find out…

http://www.salemhousepress.com/Arkaham/Sinclair.html

 

New Installment of Summer Cottage from Hell from The Sinclair Narratives

Another installment  to keep you entertained during this time of containment

 

This week Henry, Tesla, Teddy Roosevelt, John Hammond Jr. (Hammond Castle), and President Taft meet at the Essex Country Club in Manchester. There Telsa and John Hammond Jr. argue if flesh can be reanimated after death and we meet General George Patton.

Come back every Tuesday for another installment of Summer Cottage from Hell appearing in the Winter Issue of Arkham Tales from the Flipside. A story featuring everyone’s favorite immortal, Henry Sinclair, and his third-generation Viking ragtag crew where they are out to solve the mysterious death of the man who rented President Taft his Summer Whitehouse for two years. Tesla, Roosevelt, Illuminati, and Lovecraft monsters fill this tale based on real events in Beverly MA.

http://www.salemhousepress.com/Arkham/Sinclair.html

Finding Community in Frederick Maryland

In our world where there are reports that 70% of the nation report they are lonely, I have left the Witch City to find people who still value each other’s time. I had been living in Salem for almost 30 years and made over 5,000 friends and had some great times with all of them. It used to be a great walking city where a 10-minute walk would take an hour due to all of the conversations you had on the way. Within the last ten years, that has all changed. Now, four days out of the week my only conversation is while one of the great staff at Jolie Tea Co. pours me my Lapsang Souchong. So I am on the hunt for a town where Barney and Fred still see each other daily, even if they get on each other nerves…

So what happened? Is it the 5am alarm, the hour each way commute, the 6 day work week, or the ease of social contact through social media? What drove us apart and what has taken its place. Is it Netflix binging or video games. Or are people just working, sleeping, and running errands on the one day off they get. Is it the belief we have to spend money to socialize…

So I’m on the hunt. On my latest journey through the south, I stopped off at Frederick MD. Frederick was the home of Francis Scott Key. The ninth president of the United States, John Hanson, lived here. If you will remember there were 14 presidents prior to the forming of the Constitution. John Hancock was the 4th president when he signed the Declaration of Independence. Yes George Washington was not the first, but he did travel through this town during the French and Indian War. During the Revolutionary War, Hessians were garrisoned here to block the crossroads from the Patriots’ usage.   Roger B. Taney was also found here, he was the 5th Superior Court Justice that became infamous for his Dread Scott decision. Also, It was a crossroads during the Civil War with one day having Union troops marching through with the next Confederates. To prevent Confederate sympathies, President Lincoln suspended Habeas Corpus and arrested local politicians. Also, they had a Civil War hospital museum where they treated troops from both sides of the Civil War. Plus, it had many shops on two long streets, Patrick and Market, filled with good people and even greater items for sale.  The first I entered was The Spice & Tea Exchange where Keith made me a very nice Lapsang Souchong blended tea to start off my journey after he gave me a little history of the town and told me about the big social events they hold down on the river filled with music and people.

Now there were many similarities between Salem MA and Frederick MD; except one has the ocean while the other has the Appalachians. Both had a majority of architecture from the 19th century, but I must say Frederick’s shopping community was larger and much more varied. I believe Frederick did have a psychic, but the most magical place was Smoke Signals. A slight throwback to an old headshop from the 70s. There I met Niko, a fellow Thelemite. We had a good conversation on history, Masons, and magic. 93 and 42 to you Niko! They also had their own Record Exchange. Sam who owned the one in Frederick was probably the friendliest and happiest soul I met in town. He had an eclectic and rare selection of some fine punk and obscure Soul and R&B. Many rare vinyl prints I had seen on his shelf. Now Salem has their own Record Exchange as well with Barrence Whitfield and his large soul and his encyclopedic knowledge of music. Maybe Sam while visiting his son in Boston might just one day step in and meet Barrence when the worlds collide…

 

Another strange coincidence was, tunnels. Now nobody I talked to knew if there were any in town or not, but I had seen many signs. There were many service entrances in the sidewalk. Within Salem, these would be locations where they took the roof off the tunnel and opened up a small section in front of the tunnel entrance to the basement. Why make a second hole in your foundation and why waste a great resource. Very similar to them are basement addresses accessible from the sidewalk. They take the roof off the tunnel once more and utilize a staircase to block the tunnel from going the other direction and use the preexisting door from the tunnel into the basement. Plus they had scores of buildings with exterior chimneys. Exterior chimneys were utilized when central chimneys were more economical because it proved a better way to connect a home to a tunnel. The tunnel would enter through the fireplace arch in the basement allowing the tunnel to exit 3 feet to 6 feet within the basement. This alleviated flashing problems and created a draw system up through the flu to provide fresh air for the tunnel system. Frederick was on a river and was a hub on the railroad. Monocacy River runs into the Potomac and leads to the sea. Within Salem, they were used for smuggling to avoid paying duties, the Underground Railroad, and transportation during inclement weather.  A quick search shows no history of smuggling in Frederick, but most smuggling activities do not show up within public records… Some finds I did come across were that Confederate sympathizers would smuggle goods like quinine and clothing to help out the South.  Also, it would be useful for these sympathizers to meet in private once Lincoln started arresting them.

 

Very much like Salem, walking through Frederick was like walking back in time. A rough estimate I would say there were about 20 square blocks of 19th-century brick homes. A majority of them were attached row houses. Outside of old town was modern communities and the usual cluster of strip malls with major outlets with a very extensive series of bus routes to get back and forth. Their transit center had links to Amtrak and Greyhound.

Good tip. While traveling I have found a black membership at Gold’s Gym for $29.99 a month will get you a locker to store a duffel bag, a shower, and a massage bed to take a nap on.

While I was waiting for that bus to get me to Planet Fitness to drop off my duffel, I stopped in at the Curious Iguana where Elna sold me a book to read while I waited for the bus. The Curious Iguana owners are also the owners of the Dancing Bear where I met Kevin who I kept bumping into as I traveled through town. Now the owners Marlene and Tom England give a portion of the store’s sales each year to international non-profits (more than $51,850 as of December 2018), which is quite impressive! So support them so they can support many others. I also found an old The Darkness comic at Brainstorm Comics and Gaming which Brendan sold me. It was an issue my friend Matt Maguire worked on. Matt’s story also appears in our Winter issue of Arkham: Tales from the Flipside. Hopefully Brendan will be able to buy that house!

Later that night I walked up Market Street and found many street performers. The first I played some flute with was Arthur Harrison from The Cassettes on Theremin, Brady Danger on guitar (Instagram @bradydangermusic), and @eltheviolinist on Instagram. Later I played a little with Myle Voorhees on banjo. We might even get him to write a story for Arkham; Tales from the Flipside

 

Alyssa HardThen  I got to hear Alyssa Hard at Cafe-Nola. She originally sat and listened to me play my flute on the steps of an old bank that closed years ago. I owe her a better performance since my amp was dying…but her performance was top notch. I hope she enjoyed some Robin Ella & the CC String Band, I think it would be up her alley along with the Carolina Chocolate Drops. I sort of like this; I got to listen and play music on the street. I’m used to walking into a bar for 30 years to hear music, but here it was outside. I got into some great conversations with Myle about banjo, community, and friends. I got to talk to a lovely songstress and had Arthur teach me a thing or two. Arthur was kind enough also to give me a ride back to Planet Fitness to get my duffel. We talked about history, electronics, music, and the CIA. He probably gave me the best conversation on my journey.

From my questions, it does seem there is a community in Frederick. Keith informed me about the community that comes out for town events down at the river, Sam says he still is able to see his friends weekly, Myle gets to work and play with his, and Arthur just seems to take out his Theremin out and people just gather to say hello. This might just be a town I might have to return to and find a Couchsurfing host to check it out further. They might of found a way to combat the 70% within a metropolitan area. The houses are said to be in the $350,000 range, with a seedy side coming back into vogue with homes around $150,000.On the other hand, those walking through the bar scenes, did seem younger. It would have been a good indicator if a mix aged population walked by to see if people deep in their careers still have time for each other. So who knows, but it is worth a second look.

Maybe Barney and Fred were just around the corner…

 

 

 

The End of a Tale…

So will Joseph Knapp Jr. Hang as the New Year Tolls?

This is the exciting climax of Murder on the Common. History books say he did, but what really happened? How did this infamous 19th-century murder that kept the country riveted at the time really end? Did he die? For that matter our star, Henry Sinclair, nobody is sure of when his death happened as well…

If you didn’t get to read this exciting free serial of Murder on the Common, it will be in print on April 7th for the 290th anniversary of the Captain Joseph White murder which inspired Edgar Allan Poe to write the Tell-Tale Heart and the Parker Brothers to alter the game Cluedo. Did you know a relation of the Parker Brothers was the judge in the real case who died on the night of the first trial and the lead pipe in Clue was mentioned as the murder weapon in two blackmail letters written to the man who got away with murder? Buy your copy of Murder on the Common on April 7th, 2020.

Next week we will bring you a sample of the next tale from The Sinclair Narratives called Summer Cottage from Hell presented in the Winter edition of Arkham: Tales from the Flipside. A tale about the mysterious death of the man who rented President Taft a home in Beverly MA that became the summer White House for two years. A tale featuring Henry alongside Teddy Roosevelt, Nikola Tesla, Rough Rider Frank “Keno” Crowninshield, and Mark Twain going up against Lovecraftian monsters, Bohemian Grove, and the Illuminati.

This week’s installment of Murder on the Common!

illustration from Murder on the Common from The Sinclair Narratives