‘He turned into one of the district messenger offices, where he was warmly greeted by the manager.’*
Happy Birthday DM!
The District Messenger, newsletter of The Sherlock Holmes Society of London is thirty years old this month. From its inception it has been edited and distributed by Roger Johnson, who since 2007 has also been joint Editor of the Society’s journal The Sherlock Holmes Journal.
The District Messenger began life as the Grapevine on 1 December 1982. The first issue consisted of a letter from Grant C. Eustace, trailing a new BBC drama series called Second Holmes, which was to start transmission in January of the following year (incidentally, that six-part series has just had a re-run on BBC Radio4 Extra).
The fledgling newsletter was already making its mark but in February 1985 Roger appealed to readers to give the Grapevine a new name (“The best I can come up with is ” L a n g d a l e Pike,” wrote Roger, “a n d I’m n o t really happy with it!”). It was member Tony Medawar who was inspired to suggest The District Messenger, a title the newsletter has proudly born since March 1985.
The District Messenger, it usually runs to 2 A4 pages, is jam-packed full of all the latest news of our world and it is especially good on news and capsule reviews of new publications. Ever since day one Roger has provided the printed newsletter free to members who paid for postage or supplied him with SAEs but most readers now access it electronically. There are normally twelve issues a year, usually about one a month. Best of all, The District Messenger is absolutely free and it is also available to non-members.
You can access its entire archive, right back to that first issue.
You will also be able to find it on our Links page.
The DM, as some of its readers fondly call it, is an essential piece of reading for anyone who takes a serious interest in the world of Sherlock Holmes. On the occasion of its 30th birthday, we wish the DM many happy returns!
*The Hound of the Baskervilles