Why do biographers today try to go in and strip the very SOUL away from their chosen subjects?
DASHIELL HAMMETT was an HONEST man, just read anything ever written about him by the people who actually KNEW HIM...
No-nonsense people like LILLIAN HELLMAN.
Dashiell Hammett, author of "The Continental Op", "The Maltese Falcon", "RED DUST", "THE THIN MAN" and numerous other Detective FICTION-altering creations was a PINKERTON detective that had the uncanny ability to write like a fever DREAM.
He had a DEPARTMENTALIZED/COMPARTMENTALIZED BRAIN that quickly and efficiently stored away even the most trivial information.
ANYTHING he became interested in was thoroughly explored and exhausted until he became as familiar and adept with said subject as the experts who originally wrote the books.
The Behavior of Snapping Turtles.
Playing CHESS in your HEAD....
Studying the RETINA of the EYE...
Information stored away for LATER, just in case.
He actually got his start skip-tracing deadbeats for Samuels Jewelers in San Francisco.
He developed TUBERCULOSIS fighting for our country during World War I, a disease that would eventually claim his life....
But not before the INDIGNITY of being accused of being a COMMUNIST by Sen. Joseph McCarthy during the House Un-American Activities fiasco of the 1950's.
Dashiell Hammet was a man that, in his late FORTIES, enlisted in the ARMY and went off to fight World War II, at a time when other public figures ran for the Hills and used their CELEBRITY to stay out of uniform.
Hammett was Dragged and Humiliated through public trials later in life and accused of being Un-American...
HE WAS JAILED because he refused to answer questions or rat out his friends.
NOWADAYS, "Biographers" are even trying to put the LIE to the facts of his early days because the DATES don't exactly match up...
No matter HOW intelligent you are, what EXACTLY did YOU do last MONTH or even LAST WEEK?
Dashiell Hammett was an HONEST MAN.
He believed that MORALITY was a personal affair and held himself to a higher standard than most men.
He told THE TRUTH, no matter HOW brutal..
We should BELIEVE him, no matter WHAT discrepancies there may be with DATES...
Dashiell left prison a somewhat BROKEN man and lived out his final days with his TRUE love, Lillian Hellman, his TUBERCULOSIS exacerbated by INCARCERATION and lackluster prison doctors...
The story of those last days and Lillian's subsequent depression after he passed away is far too SAD to recount here...
In fact, I hope to NEVER read it again...
Dashiell Hammett passed away on a cold winter night in 1961.....
If you are interested, please read Lillian Hellman's "PENTIMENTO" and "An Unfinished Woman".