Conrad First The Joseph Conrad Periodical Archive

The Blue Peter (London, UK)

Oct 1925. The 'Loch Etive'.

Launched in July 1921, The Blue Peter: The Magazine of Sea Travel published maps, historical articles, short fiction, and features on travel, yachting, and motor boats. Edited by A.M. and Frederick Arthur Hook, whose other publications included Merchant Adventurers, 1914-1918 (1920), Sail: The Romance of the Clipper Ships (1929), and Eastwards (1929). Photo-illustrations throughout, with full-colour advertisements and reproductions of paintings of sailing ships, it was to be found in the saloons of numerous passengers ships of the day. Published in London, price 1/-. Succeeded in May 1939 by The Trident.

When Richard Curle wrote a biographical article titled 'Joseph Conrad in the East' for The Blue Peter (September-October 1922), Conrad initially took his friend to task: 'Didn't it ever occur to you, my dear Curle, that I knew what I was doing in leaving the facts of my life and even my tales in the background. Explicitness, my dear fellow, is fatal to the glamour of all artistic work, robbing it of all suggestiveness, destroying all illusion. You seem to believe in literalness and explicitness, in facts and also in expression' (CL 7:457). Mollified by Curle's offer to withdraw the article, he contented himself with correcting '2 statements of fact', and added: 'if you could work into it (since it is written for the man in the street) something about my work having the quality of interest -- as the m-in-the-s understands it -- the interest of surprise, of story etc you will be rendering me a great service. I still suffer from the reputation of being a gloomy depressing author' (CL 7: 461).

The Blue Peter also published Jessie Conrad's wartime memoir 'Our Visit to Poland in 1914' in two installments in August and September 1925. The magazine reproduced two black-and-white photographs: 'The Quadrangle of Cracow University, in which a tablet will be placed in October this year in memory of Joseph Conrad' (August, p.210); and 'Zakopane, where Joseph Conrad spent the first two months of the war' (September, p.292). Another article by Jessie Conrad, titled 'Joseph Conrad's War Service', was published in early 1931.

Davies, Laurence, et al., ed. The Collected Letters of Joseph Conrad. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1983-2007. 9 vols.
Galactic Central Magazine Archive. The Blue Peter.