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Nevada Writers Hall of Fame: Dan De Quille

Dan De Quille

Dan De Quille
Nevada Writers Hall of Fame 1994

Photo: Dan De QuilleDan De Quille a.k.a. William Wright (1829-1898) was lured to the Comstock in 1857 and became Nevada's most popular writer in the 19th Century. He was a prolific and versatile story-teller and journalist best known for The Big Bonanza (1876). He was also a correspondent for a variety of popular newspapers and magazines, and is still considered the founder of the style used by present-day columnists.

Biographers Richard Dwyer and Richard Lindenfelter say De Quille "captured for posterity much of the spirit of the western mines." As the editor of Virginia City's Territorial Enterprise off and on again for more than 30 years, one of his employees was young Samuel Clemens a.k.a. Mark Twain, whose two years on the Enterprise, under De Quille's tutelage, was the turning point in Mark Twain's life. Twain said of De Quille that "the first big compliment I ever received was that I was 'almost worthy to write in the same column with Dan De Quille.'"

Bibliography for Dan De Quille

Fiction:

Berkove, Lawrence I., ed. Dives and Lazarus:Their Wanderings and Adventures in the Infernal Regions. Ann Arbor, MI: Ardis, 1988. [Available: Knowledge Center, Special Collections: PS 1525 .D35 D5 1988]

Berkove, Lawrence I., ed. The Fighting Horse of the Stanislaus: Stories and Essays. Iowa City, IA: Univ. of Iowa Press, 1990. [Available: Knowledge Center: PS 1525 .D35 A6 1990]

Berkove, Lawrence I., ed. The Gnomes of the Dead Rivers. Sparks, NV: Falcon Hill Press, 1990. [Available: Knowledge Center, Special Collections: PS 1525 .D35 G56 1990]

Berkove, Lawrence I., ed. The Sorceress of Attu. MI: Univ. of Michigan-Dearborn, 1994. [Available: Knowledge Center: F 591 .A1 W36 1977]

"Bib Bill Scuffles, or The Fight at Foster's Bar." The Nevada Monthly (March 1880) [Available: Knowledge Center, Research Microfilm: Microfilm N793; Special Collections: TN 121 .N48]

Dives and Lazarus: Their Wanderings and Adventures in the Infernal Regions. Ann Arbor: Ardis, 1988. [Available: Mathewson-IGT Knowledge Center's Special Collections: PS 1525 .D35 D5 1988]

"Fear and Loathing on the Comstock." Great Basin. (Vol. 2, no. 1; Spring 1997), pp. 22-23. [Available: Special Collections F 789 .G74]

The Gnomes of the Dead Rivers. Sparks, NV: Falcon Hill Press, 1990. [Available: Mathewson-IGT Knowledge Center's Special Collections: PS 1525 .D35 G56 1990]

"Lorenzo Dow's Miracle." San Francisco Examiner (Feb. 12, 1893)  [a tall tale]

"on Seven Nimrods of the Sierras." Overland Monthly and Out West Magazine. (January 1888) Vol. 11, no. 61, 2nd series; p. 60.

Nonfiction:

"An American Miner in Mexico, Part I." Overland Monthly and Out West Magazine. (Jan. 1890) Vol. 15, no. 85; p. 34.

"An American Miner in Mexico, Part II." Overland Monthly and Out West Magazine. (Feb. 1890) Vol. 15, no. 86; p. 145.

"The Eagle's Nest." Overland Monthly and Out West Magazine. (1891) Vol. 17, no. 101, 2nd series; p. 535.

"Fun and Frolic,"  in Glotfelty, Cheryll, ed. Literary Nevada: Writings from the Silver State. Reno: University of Nevada Press, 2008; pp. 114-117. [Available: Mathewson-IGT Knowledge Center, its Special Collections, the Basque Library, Western Nevada College-Carson City, and Great Basin College-Elko: PS 571 .N3 L57 2008]

History of the Big Bonanza: An Authentic Account of the Discovery, History, and Working of the World Renowned Comstock Silver Lode of Nevada. Hartford, CT: American, 1876. [Available: Knowledge Center, Special Collections: TN 413 .N25 W8 1947]  ~ later title: The Big Bonanza

A History of the Comstock Silver Lode & Mines, Nevada and the Great Basin Region; Lake Tahoe and the High Sierras. Virginia City, NV: F. Boegle, 1889. [Available: Knowledge Center, Special Collections: TN 413 .N25 W9; also at: WNC-Carson City campus]

Lingenfelter, Richard E., ed. Washoe Rambles. Los Angeles: Westernlore, 1963. (Great West and Indian Series, 23) [Available: Knowledge Center, Special Collections: F 841 .W76 1963]

Little Lucy's Papa: A Story of Silverland. Sparks, NV: Falcon Hill, 1987. [Available: Knowledge Center, Special Collections: F 849 .V8 D395 1987]

"Little Lucy's Papa: A Story of Silverland" in Golden Era. San Francisco, Calif., (July 17, 1864)

"'Odd Sticks' of Ohio." Daily Tribune. Salt Lake City (January 20, 1889)

"on Artemus Ward in Nevada." Californian Illustrated Magazine. (1893) Vol. 4, p. 403.

"on perils of the High Sierras." Overland Monthly and Out West Magazine. (1887) Vol. 9, no. 51, 2nd series; p. 311.

"on Peter Crow among the witches." Californian Illustrated Magazine. (1893) Vol. 3, p. 643.

"on reporting with Mark Twain." Californian Illustrated Magazine. (1893) Vol. 4, p. 170.

"Rev. Olympus Jump: S. F. Examiner." Current Literature. (June 1889) Vol. 2, no. 6; p. 486.

Silver Walled Palace. Sparks, NV: Falcon Hill, 1981. [Available: Knowledge Center, Special Collections: F 849 .V8 D4; and at Great Basin Clg., Elko]

Snow-Shoe Thompson, 1856-1876. Los Angeles: Glen Dawson, 1954. (Early California Travels Series, 21). [Available: Knowledge Center, Special Collections: F 856 .E174 v. 21]

"Snow-Shoe Thompson, 1856-1876." Overland Monthly and Out West Magazine (October 1886) Vol. 8, no. 46; p. 419.

"Snowshoe Thompson: A Bicentennial Feature." Nevada Historical Review (Fall 1974), Vol. 2, no. 2; pp. 44-71. [Available: Knowledge Center's Special Collections:  F 836 .N33 1974]

"The Stone Elephant of Inyo." Overland Monthly and Out West Magazine. (August 1889) Vol. 14, no. 80, 2nd series; p. 3.

"Trailing a Lost Child." Palimpsest. (1988) Vol. 69, no. 3; pp. 124-131. (reprint of an 1892 article)

"Underground Business Arrangements," in Glotfelty, Cheryll, ed. Literary Nevada: Writings from the Silver State. Reno: University of Nevada Press, 2008; pp. 109-114. [Available: Mathewson-IGT Knowledge Center, its Special Collections, the Basque Library, Western Nevada College-Carson City, and Great Basin College-Elko: PS 571 .N3 L57 2008]

"Washoe Rambles." Golden Era. (1861)

The Wonders of Nevada: Where They Are and How to Get to Them. Virginia City, NV: Enterprise Printing House, 1878.

Biographical Sources & Critical Response:

Anonymous. "The Burning Man goes up in smoke." Great Basin News (Summer 1996), p. 13. [Available: Mathewson-IGT Knowledge Center's University Archives: AC 0519]

Berkove, Lawrence I. Dan De Quille. Boise, ID: Boise State Univ., 1999. (Boise State University Western Writers Series, no. 136) [Available: Knowledge Center, Special Collections: PS 128 .B6 no. 136]

Berkove, Lawrence I. "Dan De Quille." in American National Biography Online.

Berkove, Lawrence I. "Dan De Quille" in Dictionary of Literary Biography. Vol. 186, pp. 79-86. PA: Gale Group, 1997. [online via Gale Literature Resource Center database]

Berkove, Lawrence I. "Dan De Quille and Roughing It: Borrowings and Influence." Nevada Historical Society Quarterly. (1994) Vol. 37, no. 1; pp. 52-57.

Berkove, Lawrence I. "Dan De Quille's Narratives of Ohio: Lorenzo Dow's Miracle." Northwest Ohio Quarterly (1988) Vol. 60, no. 2; pp. 47-56.

Berkove, Lawrence I. "Dan De Quille's Narratives of Ohio: 'Oddsticks'." Northwest Ohio Quarterly (1990) Vol. 62, no. 3-4; pp. 54-64.

Berkove, Lawrence I. "Free Silver and Jews: The Change in Dan De Quille." American Jewish Archives. (1989) Vol. 41, no. 1; pp. 43-51.

Berkove, Lawrence, I. "Iowa Pioneers Find a Lost Child: A Dan De Quille Memoir." Palimpsest. (1988) Vol. 69, no. 3; pp. 120-123.

Berkove, Lawrence I. "The Literary Journalism of Dan De Quille." Nevada Historical Society Quarterly. (1985) Vol. 28, no. 4; pp. 249-261.

Berkove, Lawrence I. "Nobody Writes To Anybody Except To Ask A Favor": New Correspondence Between Mark Twain and Dan De Quille." Mark Twain Journal (Spring 1988) Vol. 26, no. 1; pp. 2+.[Available: Mathewson-IGT Knowledge Center and its Special Collections: PS 1329 .M3 1988]

Berkove, L. I. "'The Sport's Dream': a Dan De Quille Lesson." Thalia: Studies in Literary Humor. (1996) Vol. 16, no. 1-2; pp. 64-68.

Bjork, Kenneth. "'Snowshoe' Thompson: Fact and Legend." Norwegian-American Studies and Records. (1956) Vol. 19, pp. 62-88.

Boeser, Linda. "Two Comstock Journalists: Samuel L. Cloemens and William L. Wright as Reporters and Authors." Missouri Historical Review. (1965) Vol. 59, no. 4; pp. 428-438.

Cassinelli, Dennis. Chronicles of the Comstock. Dayton, NV: Dennis Cassinelli, 2010. [Available: Knowledge Center: F 849 .V8 C377 2010]

Clapp, Nicholas. Virginia City: to Dance with the Devil. San Diego: Sunbelt Publications, 2016. [Available: Mathewson-IGT Knowledge Center's Special Collections: F 849 .V8 C58 2016]

Clark, Robert Morse. "Dan De Quille, the Washoe Giant: A Biography and Anthology (review)." Montana. (Spring 1992) Vol. 42, pp. 81, 83.

Cobb, Ty. "Who Was Alf Doten?" Nevada State Journal (April 20, 1975): p. 9.

Daehnke, Joel. In the Work of Their Hands is Their Prayer: Cultural Narrative and Redemption on the American Frontiers, 1830-1930. Athens, OH: Ohio Univ. Press, 2003. [Available: Knowledge Center: PS 169 .F7 D34 2003]

"Dan De Quille." Benet's Reader's Encyclopedia of American Literature. 1991, p. 253. [online via Gale Literature Resource Center database]

De Quille, Dan. Papers, 1877-1887. [Available: Knowledge Center, Special Collections: NC55]

Dwyer, Richard A. and Richard E. Lingenfelter, eds. Dan De Quille, the Washoe Giant: A Biography and Anthology. Reno, NV: Univ. of Nevada Press, 1990. [Available: Knowledge Center: PS 1525 .D35 .D8 1990; and at Great Basin Clg., Elko; WNC, Carson City & Fallon campuses]

Earl, Phillip I. This Was Nevada. Vols. 1-2. Reno: Nevada Historical Society, 1986, 2000. [Available: Mathewson-IGT Knowledge Center and its Special Collections: F 841 .E25 1986 and Government Publications: 29-H62 9:T34]

Ehrlich, Eugene and Carruth, Gorton. The Oxford Illustrated Literary Guide to the United States. New York: Oxford University Press, 1982. [Available: Knowledge Center: PS 141 .E74 1982]

Emrich, Duncan. Comstock Bonanza: Western Americana of J. Ross Browne, Mark Twain, Sam Davis, Bret Harte, James W. Gally, Dan de Quille, Joseph T. Goodman [and] Fred Hart. NY: Vanguard, 1950. [Available: Knowledge Center: F 842 .E5 1950]

Gale, Steven H., ed. "Dan De Quille [William Wright]." in Encyclopedia of American Humorists. NY: Garland, 1988. pp. 119-121.

Gehm, Katherine. "Yarns from the Territorial Enterprise," in Nevada's Yesterdays. (Wild and Woolly West Series, No. 14). Palmer Lake, CO: Filter Press, 1970; pp. 22-24. [Available: Mathewson-IGT Knowledge Center's Special Collections: F 841.6 .G4]

Glotfelty, Cheryll. The Comstock's Literary Mother Lode [videodisc]. Reno, NV: Teaching and Learning Technologies, UNR, [2009]. [Available: Mathewson-IGT Knowledge Center's Special Collections: PS 561 .C65 2009]

Glotfelty, Cheryll. "State Pieces in the U.S. Regions Puzzle: Nevada and the Problem of Fit" in Regionalism and the Humanities. Edited by Timothy R. Mahoney and Wendy J. Katz. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 2008; pp. 237-250. [Available:  Mathewson-IGT Knowledge Center: E 179.5 .R44 2008]

Goetzmann, William H. Exploration and Empire: the Explorer and the Scientist in the Winning of the American West. New York: History Book Club, [1993]. [Available: Mathewson-IGT Knowledge Center's Special Collections and Great Basin College-Elko:  F 591 .G62]

Goodwin, Charles Carroll. "Dan De Quille," in As I Remember Them. Salt Lake City: a Special Committee of the Salt Lake Commercial Club, 1913; pp. 213-217. [Available: Knowledge Center's Special Collections and Knowledge Center F 860 .G65]

Hinckle, Warren. The Richest Place on Earth: The Story of Virginia City, Nevada, and the Heyday of the Comstock Lode. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1978. [Available: Knowledge Center: F 849 V8 H56]

James, Ronald M., and Susan A. James. A Short History of Virginia City. Reno: University of Nevada Press, 2014. [Available: Mathewson-IGT Knowledge Center and its Special Collections: F 849 .V8 J355 2014]

Lee, Judith Yaross. "(Pseudo-) Scientific Humor." in American Literature and Science. Univ. Press of Kentucky, 1992; pp. 128-156.  [Available: Knowledge Center: PS 169 .S413 A8 1992]

Lillard, Richard G. "Dan De Quille, Comstock Reporter and Humorist." The Pacific Historical Review. Vol. 13, no. 3 (Sep., 1944), pp. 251-259. [Available: Knowledge Center: F 851 .P18 Vol. 13 1944 and online via JSTOR for UNR-affiliates, only]

Lyon, William H. "Dan De Quille, the Washoe Giant: A Biography and Anthology (review)." Utah Historical Quarterly (Spring 1991) Vol. 59; pp. 209-210.

Marks, Margaret. An Interview with Margaret Marks conducted by Ann Harvey 2 August 1984. Reno: Oral History Program, University of Nevada, Reno, Library, [1984]. [Available: Mathewson-IGT Knowledge Center's Special Collections: F 849 .V8 M3]

McLane, Alvin R. Pyramid Lake: A Bibliography. (Camp Nevada Monograph No. 1). Reno, NV: Alvin R. McLane, 1975. [Available: Mathewson-IGT Knowledge Center and its Special Collections, DeLaMare Library, DRI Library: Z 1310 .P9 M3]

McWilliams, Carey. North from Mexico: the Spanish-Speaking People of the United States. New York: Greenwood Press, 1968. [Available: Mathewson-IGT Knowledge Center: F 786 .M215 and the 1990 edition]

Mergen, Bernard. At Pyramid Lake. Reno: University of Nevada Press, 2014. [Available: Mathewson-IGT Knowledge Center and its Special Collections: F 847 .W3 M47 2014]

Moreno, Richard. Nevada Trivia. 3rd rev. ed. Baldwin Park, CA: Gem Guides Book Co., 2005. [Available: Special Collections: F 841 .M595 2005]

Moreno, Richard. Roadside History of Nevada. Missoula, MT: Mountain Press, 2000. [Available: Mathewson-IGT Knowledge Center: F 839.3 .M69 2000]

Mott, Frank Luther. A History of American Magazines. Volume 3: Supplement Sketches of Certain Important Magazines which Flourished 1865-1885; p. 407. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1968. [Available: Knowledge Center and Great Basin College Library: PN 4877 .M63 1938 Vol. 3]

Mott, Frank Luther. A History of American Magazines. Volume 4: Local and Regional Magazines; p. 105. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1968. [Available: Knowledge Center and Great Basin College Library: PN 4877 .M63 1938 Vol. 4]

Nevada In Print. 2nd ed. Carson City: Nevada State Library, 1961. [Available: Mathewson-IGT Knowledge Center and its Special Collections: Z 1309 .N4 1961]

Nevada In Print. 1964 Supplement. Carson City: Nevada State Library, 1961. [Available: Mathewson-IGT Knowledge Center and its Special Collections: Z 1309 .N4 1961 Suppl. 1964]

Nielson, Norm. Tales of Nevada!  Reno, NV: Tales of Nevada Publications, 1991. [Available: Knowledge Center: F 841.6 .N5 1989, Vol. 1]

Rankin, Charles E. "Dan De Quille, the Washoe Giant: A Biography and Anthology (review)." New Mexico Historical Review. (Oct. 1991) Vol. 66, pp. 464-466.

Rankin, Charles E. "The Fighting Horse of the Stanislaus: Stories and Essays by Dan De Quille (review)." Montana. (Spring 1992) Vol. 42, pp. 83-85.

Rawls, James J., ed. Dan De Quille of the Big Bonanza. San Francisco: Book Club of California, 1980. [Available: Knowledge Center, Special Collections: F 841.6 .D4]

Remley, David. "Dan De Quille, the Washoe Giant: A Biography and Anthology (review)." Journal of the West (Jan. 1993) Vol. 32, pp. 86-87.

Rocha, Guy. "2 enterprising papers preceded Territorial." Reno Gazette-Journal (December 10, 2006), p. B9.

Schumacher, Geoff. "Clark, Laxalt lead growing roster of renowned Nevada writers," in Schumacher, Geoff, ed. Nevada 150 Years in the Silver State. Las Vegas: Stephens Press, 2014; pp. 197-198.

Shepperson, Wilbur S. Mirage-Land: Images of Nevada. Reno: University of Nevada Press, 1992. [Available: Knowledge Center: F 841 .S54 1992; and at Great Basin Clg., Elko; Western NV Community Clg., Carson City & Fallon campuses]

Shinn, Milicent Washburn. "Some Conditions in the Eighties." Overland Monthly and Out West Magazine. (July 1898) Vol. XXXII, no. 187; p. 66.

Smith, Grant H. The History of the Comstock Lode, 1850-1997. Reno: NV Bureau of Mines and Geology, 1998. [Available: Knowledge Center, its Special Collections and University Archives, and DeLaMare Library: TN 413 .N2 S55 1998; and at Great Basin Clg., Elko]

Stefoff, Rebecca. Nevada. 2nd ed. (Celebrate the States). New York: Marshall Cavendish Benchmark, 2010.  [Available: Mathewson-IGT Knowledge Center's Special Collections: F 841.3 .S72 2010]

Wright, William (correspondence). [Available: Univ. of Virginia, Alderman Library's Special Collections: NIDS Fiche Number 4.19.1453] see entry in Archives USA database

Wright, William (Papers). [Available: Univ. of CA, Berkeley, The Bancroft Library: MS 65-1185] see entry in Archives USA database

Wright, William (Papers). [Available: Mathewson-IGT Knowledge Center's Special Collections] see entry in Archives USA database.

Please direct questions about this bibliography to Betty Glass