Welcome to the DPL...

Welcome to the Damsel Preservation League or "DPL" for short. Contained herein, you'll find a multitude of damsels of all ages worthy of preservation, as well as many links to current artists & writers of the DID genre, and many old-school favourites. Although this is basically a research type blog, there may be some occasional "mature" themed comics so, beware of this. Also this blog & is moderated to keep the spam to a minimum. The majority of the images are ones I've personally "rebuilt" from either my own collection or scans found elsewhere on the 'net. Any applicable copyrights belong to the owners and I make no money from them. Also note that this blog is still a work in progress and will be added to as I continue along...

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Ginny Gordon-Mystery At The Old Barn

Meet Virginia (Ginny) Gordon. Ginny, unlike Nancy Drew, was more akin to Trixie Belden with a bit of Penny Parker tossed in, in her actions and causes. Ginny is the 14 year-old daughter of a local newspaper owner & publisher in town of Harristown (New York), who seems to have mysteries fall, quite literally, into her lap. Her over-active imagination lends to this. The chestnut-brown haired, brown-eyed and tall for her age wannabe sleuth, heads up the treasury and promotion of a club for teens known as the "Hustlers". While the name may imply a gang of hoodlums, they were far from anything like that. The club was more the helpful type. Ginny's BFF Lucy Tryon seemed to be a "Bess Marvin" clone...same colour hair and eyes, slightly plump and with a nervous disposition toward mysteries. But as one thing would often lead to another, Ginny usually found herself in trouble, alone.

To the best of my knowledge (quoting my research and personal collection), there were only six Ginny Gordon books published by Whitman, from 1948 to 1956. I have the last four in the short series. The books were written by Julie Campbell and featured two different artists (both with the same first name...) Margaret Jervis (1948-'50?) and Margaret Wesley (1950-51?-'56) The head-shot pic above was done by Wesley. Margaret Jervis had more of a "toony" style to the characters, as seen in the below illustrations for "The Mystery at the Old Barn"(Whitman, 1951.)

Without giving away too much of the plot, the old barn becomes a new "after-school-hangout" for the kids. A place to listen to the latest records and have a burger or two. Ginny and her chums spend a good deal of time getting the barn ready for business. They even have to under-go inspection by the local board of health! but soon something becomes amiss. Food starts to disappear and the cashbox goes missing.

Near the end of the story, Ginny stakes out the barn and catches the thief in the act (but the thief promptly catches her!) The peril DID set-up is simple: after nearly breaking her wrist in a strong arm-grab, the crook (Mr. Henderson) binds Ginny's wrists behind her with some screen wire (OUCH!) Since she now knows too much, he plans on burying her alive in a hollow depression in the nearby wood! Henderson lets on that he'd been hiding in the hole when he needed to, to avoid the authorities. And he'd make sure Ginny could not cry for help or kick off the cover to the shallow hole (though he never got this far, as help showed up in the nick of time!) Surprises abound as Ginny learns the true identity of her rescuer.

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