Arthur Conan Doyle
A brief life of Holmes's creator
Born 22 May 1859 in Edinburgh, capital of Scotland, now
hailed as "World
City of Literature". Medical degree
from the University of Edinburgh,
where he studied under Joseph
Bell. His thesis on the effects of syphilis is
doctor on an Arctic whaler
ACD lived in Southsea,
Birmingham and elsewhere,
and practised as a doctor briefly.
First short story published
1879 (not about Sherlock Holmes). The story "J. Habakuk Jephson's Statement"
startling success. His first novel, A Study
in Scarlet, appeared in Beeton's Christmas Annual.
Lived for a time in
Author of more than 50 books, including historical novels (most famous The
White Company --
review), science fiction and other novels of
Professor Challenger), domestic comedy, seafaring adventure, the
comic adventures of Brigadier
supernatural, poetry, military history, many other subjects.
Bibliography from the
Arthur Conan Doyle Society.
He wrote the comic play
Annie' jointly with James Barrie, creator of Peter Pan.
In 1893, ACD "killed" Sherlock Holmes by reporting his apparent death in "The Final
Problem", last story of The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes. He wanted to
and attention to his "more serious" writings. Holmes was
briefly brought back in The Hound of the Baskervilles, 1901, then
revived in "The Empty House", 1903, and subsequent tales.
Knighted ("Sir Arthur") 1902 for his work in
Boer War propaganda (particularly
the pamphlet The War in South Africa: Its Cause and Conduct)
— and, some said, because of the publication of The Hound of the
Constant writer of letters to the editor and crusader for social
reforms. Of special interest: criminal justice (he took a personal role
Edalji and Oscar Slater cases), military strategy (though
he never served in the armed forces), public health, sports
boxing, Olympics), divorce law reform, Belgian exploitation of the
hoax. Twice ran unsuccessfully for Parliament.
Canada in 1914, when Lady Conan Doyle kept
a diary that can
be viewed online through technology from the Toronto
Reference Library. (ACD also made Canadian visits in 1894, 1922, and
He died 7 July 1930.
York Times obituary
Grave site at
book tells something of his family and his will
Arthur Conan Doyle — a murderer?
end of the manufactured scandal
Web links related to ACD
Arthur Conan Doyle Profile
The Chronicles of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
ACD's personal library
Doyle the Prolific Writer
on Scottish Writers
listings in the National Register of Archives
Life and Art of Charles Doyle' (ACD's father)
Doyle's Trick (Houdini, "The Lost World" film)
By and about collector Fred Kittle
Chronological table by Leslie S. Klinger
films and television programs
Blade Straight: Hampshire's Doctor of the Millennium
The Piltdown hoax
(ACD has been offered as a suspect, with no particular evidence)
Doyle vs. Holmes
Arthur and George,
a novel about the Edalji case
ACD and Spiritualism
A life-long interest in psychic matters
led him to acknowledge
his faith; spent the years
from 1918 to his death (7 July 1930) preaching Spiritualism around the
world and writing books
and pamphlets in support of it (The New Revelation, 1918). Principal
beliefs included the survival of personality after death and the possibility of
communication (through mediums) between this world and the next.
He was badly taken in by
the Cottingley fairy hoax of 1920.
He was a friend, then a foe, of
Other links pertinent to ACD and psychic matters:
Doyle, Spiritualism and Fairies"
The Sir Arthur
Conan Doyle Centre for Spiritualism in Edinburgh
About the First Spiritual Temple
Museum: Arthur Conan Doyle
Admirers and biographies
Conan Doyle Society web site includes
a chronology of
ACD's life as well as extensive other information.
The society maintains
mailing list for Doylean and Sherlockian discussion.
The Conan Doyle
Crowborough Establishment, based near ACD's retirement home, promotes
knowledge of his life and works.
of the Arthur Conan Doyle Collection has been established at the
Toronto Reference Library. The massive collection of Richard Lancelyn Green
is now at the City
Museum of Portsmouth, where ACD lived as a young man, where a research
room has been opened for visitors to use.
of writings about ACD
There are more than two dozen biographies of
ACD and many other books of various kinds about him. The best known
biography dates from 1947: The Life of Sir Arthur
Conan Doyle by John Dickson Carr. Three major biographies have
appeared in the last decade, by
Daniel Stashower, Andrew
Lycett and Andrew Norman.
The stories on CD-ROM
A CD-ROM titled "The Works of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle" is available for $95 US from
Insight Engineering, PO Box 10785, Franconia, Virginia 22310. Information:
See the Sherlockian.Net
"The Man Who Was Wanted",
which wasn't by ACD at all
Dame Jean Conan Doyle,
as spiritual guru (a book review)
vs. Literary Contemporaries (Randall Stock)
Post-Colonial Canonical and Cultural Revision"
Coffman, "The Continuing Adventure of the Legendary Detective"
Modern Mythology, Pop Culture, and the Super-Hero
ACD's writings on the web
Holmes (list from Sherlockian.Net)
Non-Sherlockian works (including
parodies) from Sherlockian.Net
many texts from Literature Post
Cybrarian's extensive list
facsimiles, checklist by Randall Stock
Back to the Sherlockian.Net Holmepage
Copyright © Chris Redmond 2010