Monday, October 12, 2020

Book cover: "Ghosts of Derbyshire"

  • Title: Ghosts of Derbyshire
  • Author: Clarence Daniel 
  • Also by this author: Derbyshire Customs, Derbyshire Traditions, Haunted Derbyshire
  • Cover illustrator: E. Jeffrey (it's a depiction of Chesterfield's ghostly monk)
  • Publisher: Dalesman Books (The Dalesman Publishing Company Ltd., Clapham (via Lancaster), North Yorkshire)
  • Printer: Galava Printing Co. Ltd., Hallam Road, Nelson, Lancashire
  • Price: 85 pence
  • Year: 1977 (First published, 1973. Second edition, 1974. Reprinted, 1977.)
  • Pages: 79
  • Format: Paperback
  • From the acknowledgements: "I am particularly grateful to Mr. E. Hector Kyme, a fastidious photographer whose viewfinder is a crystal ball of magic, marvel and mystery."
  • A few chapter titles: "Twelve Headless Men," "The Ghosts of Castleton," "Gabriel's Ghost Hounds," and "Dickey o'Tunstead"
  • First sentence: Although I have never seen a ghost, nor had any experience of the occult or supernatural, it would be foolish of me wildly to disclaim or denounce belief in the possible existence of other dimensions in time."
  • Last sentence: The speaker, and some friends present at the meeting, all testified to having seen the monk with the golden cross.
  • Random sentence from the middle: I was first attracted to Heage because it is one of the few villages in Derbyshire that has either had sufficient foresight to preserve its tower windmill, or lacked the energy to pull it down when the creak of its sails finally lapsed into silence.
  • Is the Heage windmill still there? Apparently so. It dates to 1791.
  • Reviews: There are no customer reviews to be found on any of the standard bookseller websites. Nor are there any reviews on Goodreads. I did, however, come across an October 2018 post about this book by "Ben" on the blog Found Objects. It's mostly a collection of the book's interior images (which is certainly valuable for posterity). It also contains these thoughts: "In addition to the usual round of spectral hounds and ladies in white, this particular area of the midlands seems notable for a lot of funny business involving skulls, and, if Clarence Daniel is to be believed, a frankly suspicious abundance of bad local poets, all dedicated to commemorating supernatural events using a fairly similar meter. You can draw your own conclusions."
  • Inspiring a descendant: In 2012, the "National Paranormal Association" curated a Nottingham Post article about Ruddington's Faye Stenson. She noted this at the time about her fascination with ghosts and her interest in collecting local ghost stories: "My interest in the subject stems from my maternal grandfather, Clarence Daniel, who published several books such as Ghosts of Derbyshire and was a well-known historian in and around Derbyshire until he passed away in 1987." 

1 comment:

  1. I loved all those books of collected ghost stories. This looks like a good one.