Date of Award


Level of Access Assigned by Author

Open-Access Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)




William Gilbert Patten is the last and greatest figure in the history of the dime novel. Representing, as he does, the transition of the dime novel writer to the field of the pulp paper magazines, he is the fitting climax to a period of prolific fictioneering unparalleled in the history of literature in any time or place. Of the school of fiction hacks who swamped the country with stories of wild adventure from the Civil War to the World War, not one stands on equal footing with the creator of Frank Merriwell. Judged by any standard he is easily the best, overshadowing such lofty figures as Edward Zane Carroll Judson and Colonel Prentiss Ingraham of Buffalo Bill fame.

William Gilbert Patten, or Gilbert Patten, was born in Corinna, Maine, on October 25, 1866.