On April 30th…

April 30, 1895: Violet Smith was kidnapped. [SOLI]

Holmes threw the reins into my lap and sprang down from the cart.
“You’re the man we want to see. Where is Miss Violet Smith?” he said, in his quick, clear way.

“That’s what I am asking you. You’re in her dogcart. You ought to know where she is.”

“We met the dogcart on the road. There was no one in it. We drove back to help the young lady.”

“Good Lord! Good Lord! What shall I do?” cried the stranger, in an ecstasy of despair. “They’ve got her, that hellhound Woodley and the blackguard parson. Come, man, come, if you really are her friend. Stand by me and we’ll save her, if I have to leave my carcass in Charlington Wood.”

April 30, 1895: Bob Carruthers shot Jack Woodley. [SOLI]

His revolver cracked, and I saw the blood spurt from the front of Woodley’s waistcoat. He spun round with a scream and fell upon his back, his hideous red face turning suddenly to a dreadful mottled pallor. The old man, still clad in his surplice, burst into such a string of foul oaths as I have never heard, and pulled out a revolver of his own, but before he could raise it he was looking down the barrel of Holmes’s weapon.

 

Some date information provided by the volume A Day-by-Day Chronology of Mr. Sherlock Holmes, according to Zeisler and Christ, compiled and edited by William S Dorn.

On April 28th…

April 28, 1895: Holmes received a note from Violet Smith saying that she was leaving her job. [SOLI]

The Thursday brought us another letter from our client. “You will not be surprised, Mr. Holmes”, said she, “to hear that I am leaving Mr. Carruthers’ employment. Even the high pay cannot reconcile me to the discomforts of my situation. On Saturday I come up to town, and I do not intend to return. Mr. Carruthers has got a trap, and so the dangers of the lonely road, if there ever were any dangers, are now over.

Some date information provided by the volume A Day-by-Day Chronology of Mr. Sherlock Holmes, according to Zeisler and Christ, compiled and edited by William S Dorn.

On April 30th…

April 30, 1898: Violet Smith was kidnapped. [SOLI]

Holmes threw the reins into my lap and sprang down from the cart.

You’re the man we want to see. Where is Miss Violet Smith?” he said, in his quick, clear way.

“That’s what I am asking you. You’re in her dogcart. You ought to know where she is.”

“We met the dogcart on the road. There was no one in it. We drove back to help the young lady.”

“Good Lord! Good Lord! What shall I do?” cried the stranger, in an ecstasy of despair. “They’ve got her, that hellhound Woodley and the blackguard parson. Come, man, come, if you really are her friend. Stand by me and we’ll save her, if I have to leave my carcass in Charlington Wood.”

April 30 1898: Bob Carruthers shot Jack Woodley. [SOLI]

His revolver cracked, and I saw the blood spurt from the front of Woodley’s waistcoat. He spun round with a scream and fell upon his back, his hideous red face turning suddenly to a dreadful mottled pallor. The old man, still clad in his surplice, burst into such a string of foul oaths as I have never heard, and pulled out a revolver of his own, but before he could raise it he was looking down the barrel of Holmes’s weapon.

 

Date information provided by the volume A Day-by-Day Chronology of Mr. Sherlock Holmes, according to Zeisler and Christ, compiled and edited by William S Dorn.

On April 28…

April 28, 1898: Holmes received a note from Violet Smith saying that she was leaving her job. [SOLI]

The Thursday brought us another letter from our client. “You will not be surprised, Mr. Holmes”, said she, “to hear that I am leaving Mr. Carruthers’ employment. Even the high pay cannot reconcile me to the discomforts of my situation. On Saturday I come up to town, and I do not intend to return. Mr. Carruthers has got a trap, and so the dangers of the lonely road, if there ever were any dangers, are now over.

Date information provided by the volume A Day-by-Day Chronology of Mr. Sherlock Holmes, according to Zeisler and Christ, compiled and edited by William S Dorn.

On April 26th…

April 26, 1887: Holmes found a note fragment in the pocket of Alec Cunningham’s dressing gown. [REIG]

April 26, 1887:Inspector Forrester arrested the two Cunninghams for murdering William Kirwan. [REIG]

Illustration by W H Hyde for Harper’s Weekly (1894)

The two Cunninghams were bending over the prostrate figure of Sherlock Holmes, the younger clutching his throat with both hands, while the elder seemed to be twisting one of his wrists. In an instant the three of us had torn them away from him, and Holmes staggered to his feet, very pale, and evidently greatly exhausted.

“Arrest these men, Inspector!” he gasped.

“On what charge?”

“That of murdering their coachman, William Kirwan!”

Illustration by Sidney Paget for The Strand (1904)

April 26, 1898: Holmes fought with Jack Woodley. [SOLI]

He had a fine flow of language, and his adjectives were very vigorous. He ended a string of abuse by a vicious back-hander which I failed to entirely avoid. The next few minutes were delicious. It was a straight left against a slogging ruffian. I emerged as you see me. Mr. Woodley went home in a cart.

Dates provided by the volume A Day-by-Day Chronology of Mr. Sherlock Holmes, according to Zeisler and Christ, compiled and edited by William S Dorn.

On April 23rd…

April 23, 1898: Violet Smith contacted Sherlock Holmes. [SOLI]

My friend, who loved above all things precision and concentration of thought, resented anything which distracted his attention from the matter in hand. And yet without a harshness which was foreign to his nature it was impossible to refuse to listen to the story of the young and beautiful woman, tall, graceful, and queenly, who presented herself at Baker Street late in the evening and implored his assistance and advice. It was vain to urge that his time was already fully occupied, for the young lady had come with the determination to tell her story, and it was evident that nothing short of force could get her out of the room until she had done so. With a resigned air and a somewhat weary smile Holmes begged the beautiful intruder to take a seat and to inform us what it was that was troubling her.

Date information provided by the volume A Day-by-Day Chronology of Mr. Sherlock Holmes, according to Zeisler and Christ, compiled and edited by William S Dorn.

Quiz: The Solitary Cyclist

As you recover from the mental exertions of the Treasure Hunt, try out this short quiz on “The Solitary Cyclist”. There are five questions, each of which has a two part answer, for a total of 10 points. Submit your answers by email to Selena by Sunday, September 18.

  1. Watson is very specific about the day and date that Miss Violet Smith visits 221B. He is also incorrect. When does he say she came, and why is it wrong?
  2. Holmes says engaging in this sport is “always a treat”. What sport, and where did he engage in it?
  3. This city was the target of a devastating attack 45 years later, but at the time of this story, it is home to a person most significant to Miss Violet Smith. What city, and whom does she say is there?
  4. This was an unconventional way to choose a groom, especially as neither candidate had yet met the bride. How was the decision made, and between what two parties?
  5. It may have felt like 90 days, but it was really nowhere near that long. What, and how long was it?