Shadrack Arnold

Created by Verne Chute
Pseudonyms include Dustin C. Scott


Twenty-four-year-old Shadrack Arnold was a well-respected man, described in one story as “Granville’s number one citizen and model of virtue.” It certainly wasn’t based on his looks — he’s described as being six foot six, weighing in at 128 pounds and with “stringy yellow hair (and) smoky blue eyes.” He worked in a grocery store and had a fondness for sasparilla, but was reputed to be the best private detective in Grail County, which might not be saying much, either — he got his gold-edged diploma (“signed no less a personage than by Captain Evans Ellsworth”) and all his detective gear, by mail order, from Criminal Investigators, Incorporated in St. Louis.

I’m not sure how many stories he appeared in, but I’ve found three so far, and judging from the two I’ve read, they’re pretty fun, light-hearted reads.

A prolific author of crime fiction, science fiction, Westerns, and books for young people, Verne Chute was born in 1898, near San Francisco, and workked in a cannery, the Army and as the proprietor of a bookstore in Los Angeles. In the course of his long career in the pulps, he sold stories to Ace-High Western StoriesBig-Book Western Magazine, The Blue Book Magazine, CluesDetective Novels Magazine, .44 Western Magazine, LibertyNew WesternShort StoriesThrilling Detective, Weird Tales and other magazines.


  • “Never Trust the Obvious” (October 10, 1944, Short Stories; 1950,  Four & Twenty Bloodhounds)
  • “Shad Tries the Free Lunch” (February 10, 1945, Short Stories)
  • “The Rule Covering Mistakes” (May 10, 1945, Short Stories)
Respectfully submitted by Kevin Burton Smith.

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