Tag Archives: nancy-drew

Who Was Your Childhood Hero?

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Who Was Your Childhood Hero?

 

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Mildred Wirt Benson aka Carolyn Keene

Carolyn Keene

I don’t know about you but I loved serial books: Nancy Drew, Hardy Boys, Bobbsey twins, Tom Swift Jr. and Trixie Belden. Every week I would journey to my favourite store called “The Treasure Chest” in Cowansville, Quebec and just fondle the books. They kept them in an old closet that acted as a wonderful book shelf, and I would huddle in there for as long as I could and read Nancy Drew.  In my mind I was Nancy with the slim pleated skirt white blouse and sweater over my shoulders. My dashing Ned would bring me flowers, and together, we would fight evil and make the world right.

I must have written dozens of letters to Carolyn Keene claiming my love for the books she wrote. One day I received a signed letter from Ms. Keene and I felt that I was walking on air, marvelling that she would even had the time to write to me.

I found out later that Carolyn Keene was a fictional character, and all the books were mostly written by ghost writers, It was like telling me that Santa Claus was not real. But now I know that Mildred Wirt Benson born in Ladora, IA was only 24 when she wrote the first Nancy Drew book. She came to this great opportunity from having been hired by Edward Stratemeyer who created Nancy Drew. He gave her a job writing Ruth Fielding books and that segued into the Nancy Drew series.

 

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Razzle Dazzle–Howard the Turtle

Every night at 5 in 1961 I would watch the CBC TV show Razzle Dazzle hosted by Suzanne Somers’ husband, Alan Hamel. I had entered a writing contest and was eagerly waiting to hear if I won a pen with my “meatless meat pie” essay. A few weeks later I found out that I had indeed won a Razzle Dazzle pen for my story along with a photo of Howard the Turtle.

 

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Dave Keon

In 1967 the Toronto Maple Leafs won the Stanley Cup and I was a member the Dave Keon fan club who scored the winning goal that year for the last game. I was a card carrying member, and for 25 cents you got a signed glossy photo of him and a membership card. The day after the playoffs I brought in that black and white 8 by 10 glossy photo of him and taped it to the classroom blackboard. My teacher Mrs. Shufelt was not a fan of Dave Keon and that one look on her face when she saw it was worth the 25 cents I had spent on it. I can still see the frown on her face like it was yesterday.

 

Connie Francis

I can’t remember what year it was in High School but I loved Connie Francis. The 1960s film “Where the Boys Are” is still one of my favourites. After writing a letter to her I received a glossy post card of her which I passed up down the school bus to my friends. If a Hershey chocolate bar had a voice like Connie Francis, it would be extra smooth.

 

I would like to hear about what you’ve received from your heroes, childhood or otherwise! If you’ve ever gotten a beloved item or letter from one of your heroes, please comment below….

Come and visit the Lanark County Genealogical Society Facebook page– what’s there? Cool old photos–and lots of things interesting to read. Also check out The Tales of Carleton Place.

Information where you can buy all Linda Seccaspina’s books-You can also read Linda in The Townships Sun andScreamin’ Mamas (USA)

relatedreading

 

TV Shows We Loved

Did You Watch Maggie Muggins?

In Memory– The Last of The Five Little Peppers

When The Friendly Giant was King on Televison

The Danger Zone —TV Technicians in Carleton Place

The Hi- Diddle-Day House of Carleton Place – Puppets on a String

Can Nancy Drew Solve the Case of Carleton Place’s Hardy Boys on High Street?

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Photos of High Street and the Findlay Foundry from The Carleton Place and Beckwith Museum

Did you know that author Franklin Dixon was born in Carleton Place? His real name was Leslie McFarlane born October 25, 1902, in Carleton Place, Ontario. It  has been said his family on High Street. Does anyone have anymore information?

I don’t know about you but I loved serial books: Nancy Drew, Hardy Boys, Bobbsey twins,Tom Swift Jr. and Trixie Belden
Every week I would journey to my favourite store called “The Treasure Chest” and just fondle the books. They kept them in an old makeshift closet that acted as a wonderful book shelf, and I would huddle in there for as long as I could and read Nancy Drew.  In my mind I was Nancy with the slim pleated skirt white blouse and sweater over my shoulders. My dashing Ned would bring me flowers, and together, we would fight evil and make the world right.

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I must have written dozens of letters to Carolyn Keene claiming my love for the books she wrote. One day I received a signed letter from Ms. Keene. I was walking on air, marveling that she would even had the time to write to me. Knowing what I know today, that the author was a fictional character, and all the books were mostly written by ghost writers, I wonder how long my love for Nancy would have lasted. But it did, for many many years.

So, let’s try to put our heads together and try to find out where Mr. McFarlane was born.

The Hardy Boys - Wikipedia

Leslie McFarlane 1902-1977
Author, ghostwriter for the Hardy Boys books, born October 25, 1902, in Carleton Place, Ontario; died September 6, 1977, in Whitby, Ontario. McFarlane grew up in Haileybury, Ontario, where his family had moved in 1910; After graduation McFarlane worked as a reporter for the Cobalt Daily Nugget for $8/per week; moved to the Sudbury Star for $25/week; 1926 wrote a few features for the Toronto Star Weekly, then moved to the Springfield Republican newspaper in Massachusetts. In the mid-1920s, he started working for Edward Stratemeyer, publisher of childrens books; wrote seven Dave Fearless books, using the pen name Roy Rockwood; his first book was entitled “Dave Fearless under the Ocean”, for which he was paid $100; ghostwrote the Hardy Boys books for $125 each, on condition that he never reveal his authorship and that he never receive royalties; wrote more than 20 of the novels under the pen name Franklin W. Dixon; The Phantom Freighter, #26 in the Hardy Boys series, was actually written by his wife, Amy, since Leslie was fishing in the Rockies when the assignment came in; the series sold millions of copies. In 1943, he joined the National Film Board (NFB) and wrote, produced, and directed 50 films. In 1953 he was nominated for an Academy Award for his documentary Herring Hunt. After the death of his wife, he moved with his three children to Toronto to work on documentaries and comedies at the CBC. In 1968-69, he wrote several scripts for the TV show, Bonanza. He also wrote 4 novels, 100 novelettes, 200 short stories, 75 TV plays, and many articles under his own name. McFarlane spent the last 41 years of his life in Whitby. His name is commemorated in the Leslie McFarlane Public School in Whitby. In 1976, he wrote his autobiography, The Ghost of the Hardy Boys.

McFarlane’s son Brian, of CBC’s Hockey Night in Canada, remembered learning, at age 10, that his father was Franklin W. Dixon, the writer of the Hardy Boys. “It was like finding out your dad was Santa Claus”

Cancer Always Calls Collect – Part 10– What Have I Become? – Zoomers

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Cancer Always Calls Collect – Part 10– What Have I Become? – Zoomers.

 

“A long time ago when I felt people didn’t understand me and my crazy life I would walk to my favourite store and hide out next to the cupboard that held the Nancy Drew books. Eventually I would save enough to purchase one and would read it from front to back a dozen times. Nancy didn’t know what I was going through in life nor did she care as she was just a fictitious character. Or was she?”