Introduction On Racism Epigraphs A History of the Pulps A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
Glossary and Character Taxonomy Breakdown by Country of Origin Bibliography Table of Contents The Best of the Encyclopedia
Leith, Lester. Lester Leith was created by Erle Stanley Gardner (Black Barr, Major Copley Brane, Terry Clane, Bertha Cool, Ken Corning, Speed Dash, Jax Keen, Barney Killigen, Bob Larkin, Señor Lobo, The Man in the Silver Mask, Perry Mason, Ed Migraine, Patent Leather Kid, Phantom Crook, Paul Pry (II), Doug Selby, Pete Wennick, White Rings, Gramps Wiggins, Bob Zane, Sidney Zoom) and appeared in sixty-four stories in Detective Fiction Weekly, Detective Story, and Flynn’s Weekly from 1929 to 1943, beginning with “The Painted Decoy” (Detective Fiction Weekly, Feb. 23, 1929).
Lester Leith is a Con Man. Leith is a "gentleman trickster," a swindler, detective, and confidence man who preys solely on other criminals. Not that the police believe this for a moment; they are certain he is crooked, and have managed to place a clever cop, Edward H. Beaver, in Leith's household, as "Scuttle," the valet. Scuttle watches Leith very intently, waiting for the moment Leith's true nature will reveal itself. Scuttle even prompts Leith to take on crimes, reading him reports aloud from newspapers. Leith knows what Scuttle is doing, and is vastly amused by his crude and clumsy attempts to entrap him. Leith is especially amused by the perpetually choleric Sergeant Arthur Ackley, Scuttle's ill-tempered superior. Ackley is obsessed with catching Leith, which Leith finds funny.
Meanwhile Leith, a tall, handsome young man, lean with grey eyes, goes on robbing, hijacking, and enriching himself by punishing other criminals. Leith only keeps ten to twenty percent of what he robs, sending the rest to charities. But that's enough to make him wealthy. Leith is a very skilled thief, good at disguise. Better still, he's a master manipulator, capable of confounding Scuttle and Ackley even when they catch him with the stolen goods in hand.
Table of Contents / Annotations / Blog / Books / Patreon / Twitter / Contact me