Is This a “Lost” Sherlock Holmes Story by Arthur Conan Doyle?

Scottish historian Walter Elliot recently discovered a “lost” Sherlock Holmes story sitting in his attic that may or may not have been written by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. “Sherlock Holmes: Discovering the Border Burghs, and by deduction, the Brig Bazaar” is part of The Book o’ the Brig, a collection of shorts intended to raise money to repair a bridge in the Scottish village of Selkirk in the early 1900s.

The 80-year-old Elliot explained to The Telegraph that in 1902, a great flood destroyed the wooden bridge in Selkirk. A year or two later, locals organized a three-day fundraiser, which included the selling of the 48-page pamphlet The Book o’ the Brig. The belief is that Doyle, who was said to love Selkirk and the surrounding area, contributed his 1,300-word story.

Indeed, Doyle is one of the three guests of honor to have attended the event. However, nowhere on the pamphlet is he credited with contributing the Sherlock Holmes story. For that reason, people seem split on whether this is an homage or the genuine article. (If it were the latter, it would be the first Doyle-penned unseen Holmes story to be released in over 80 years.)

In the story, a reporter looking to get some words from Sherlock Holmes visits the Great Detective in London, where the narrator witnesses Holmes use his deduction skills to determine that Watson is embarking on a trip to Selkirk. You can read the entire story here.

Several major media outlets are reporting that Doyle is the author of the story. Writing for the website I Hear of Sherlock Everywhere, Baker St. Irregular Mattias Boström claims that the story is a pastiche, and that it should be remembered as an example of Doyle’s impact, that his peers would write about his famous character.

[via Laughing Squid]

Image: Postertext


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