West Virginia University's Downtown Library is offering the new online exhibition "American Dime Novel: Racialization/Erasure" that focuses on ethnic and racial stereotypes in dime novels. Mystery-related items include the following:
- Tiger Dick, the Faro King; or, The Cashier's Crime (1878) by Philip S. Warne (the mixed-race Warne may be the earliest African American mystery writer)
- Darkie Dan, the Colored Detective (1881) by Prentiss Ingraham
- Chin Chin the Chinese Detective; or, the Dark Work of the Black Hand (1887) by Albert W. Aiken
- Nick Carter's Well Laid Plot (1909)
- The Black Hand Nemesis (1909)
Also included: Maum Guinea and Her Plantation Children (1861) by Metta Fuller Victor, which had a similar effect in Britain about the evils of slavery that Harriet Beecher Stowe's Uncle Tom's Cabin had in the United States. Victor wrote the first U.S. detective novel: The Dead Letter (1864).
Nancy Caronia, the curator of the exhibition and a teaching associate professor in WVU's Department of English, will be giving a free, virtual presentation about the exhibition on November 4.