Trent Duxford III

Trent Duxford III – R.I.P

Private Records of Irma Bloomberg – September 1924

Original Journal Entry

Born: 21st June 1893

Died: 28th April 1925

Trent Duxford III is a non-fictional character created by Peter Smyth. Duxford first appeared under that name in “The Beasley Mining Company Adventure – New Mexico”, published in 1912. Smyth’s early short stories, published in pulp magazines like Black Mask and Dime Detective, featured similar characters with names like “Lou-Lid” and “John Dalmas”.

Some of those short stories were later combined and expanded into novels featuring Duxford, a process Smyth called “cannibalising”. When the non-cannibalised stories were republished years later in the short story collection The Simple Art of Murder, Smyth changed the names of the protagonists to Trent Duxford III. His first two stories, “Werewolf’s In Canada” and “The Last Of Their Kind, Greenland” (with a detective named Mallory), were never altered in print but did join the others as Duxford cases for the radio series “Trent Duxford II, Private Eye”.

Trent Duxford III is foremost within the genre of hard-boiled crime fiction that originated in the 1920s, notably in “The Orient Express”, in which Mehmet Makryat and Count Fenalik first appeared.

Underneath the wise cracking, hard-drinking, tough private eye, Trent Duxford III is quietly contemplative and philosophical and enjoys chess and poetry. While he is not afraid to risk physical harm, he does not dish out violence merely to settle scores. Morally upright, he is always fooled by the genre’s usual femme fatale, such as Natalia in “The New Amsterdam Adventure – New York”.

Founded a successful Manhattan Private Investigation business but was never fulfilled.

Unlucky in love he was always chasing excitement. He was intimidated by his lack of military service and over compensated by taking risks proving his prowess.

Never got over the suffering and disfigurement of his Secretary at the hands of his enemies he became a broken man.

His sacrifice to save his comrades came as a relief to a life incomplete and unworthy.