Cave, Hugh B(arnett) 1910-2004

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CAVE, Hugh B(arnett) 1910-2004

PERSONAL: Born July 11, 1910, in Chester, England; died June 27, 2004, in Sebastian, FL; married Margaret P. Long, 1935; children: Kenneth L., Donald H.

CAREER: Writer. War correspondent during World War II.

AWARDS, HONORS: World Fantasy Award, World Fantasy Convention, best collection/anthology, 1978, for Murgunstrumm and Others; Lifetime Achievement Award, Horror Writers of America, 1991; World Fantasy Convention Award, 1997; Lifetime Achievement Award, International Horror Guild, 1998.



Black Sun, Doubleday (Garden City, NY), 1960.

The Dawning, Leisure Books (New York, NY), 2000.

The Evil Returns, Leisure Books (New York, NY), 2001.

The Mountains of Madness, Cemetery Dance (Forest Hill, MD), 2004.


Disciples of Dread, T. Doherty Associates (New York, NY), 1988.

The Corpse Maker, edited by Sheldon Jaffery, Starmont House (Mercer Island, WA), 1988.

Death Stalks the Night, edited by Karl Edward Wagner, Fedogan & Bremer (Minneapolis, MN), 1995.

Bitter/Sweet, Necronomicon Press (West Warwick, RI), 1996.

Long Live the Dead: Tales from Black Mask, introduction and interview with Cave by Keith Alan Deutsch, Crippen & Landru (Norfolk, VA), 2000.

Come into My Parlor: Tales from the Detective Fiction Weekly, Crippen & Landau (Norfolk, VA), 2002.

The Restless Dead, Dorchester Publishing Company (New York, NY), 2003.


(With others) Long Were the Nights: The Saga of PT Squadron "X" in the Solomons, Dodd, Mead & Company (New York, NY), 1943.

We Build, We Fight! The Story of the Seabees, Harper & Brothers (New York, NY), 1944.

(With C. G. Morris) "The Fightin'est Ship": The Story of the Cruiser "Helena," Dodd, Mead & Company (New York, NY), 1944, reprinted, Zenger Publishing Company (WA), 1979.

(With Norman M. Miller) I Took the Sky Road, Dodd, Mead & Company (New York, NY), 1945.

Wings across the World: The Story of the Air Transport Command, Dodd, Mead & Company (New York, NY), 1945.

Magazines I Remember, Tattered Pages Press (Chicago, IL), 1994.


Haiti: Highroad to Adventure, Holt (New York, NY), 1952.

Four Paths to Paradise: A Book about Jamaica, Doubleday (Garden City, NY), 1961.

The Witching Lands: Tales of the West Indies, Doubleday (Garden City, NY), 1962.


Fishermen Four, Dodd, Mead & Company (New York, NY), 1942.

The Cross on the Drum, Doubleday (Garden City, NY), 1959.

The Mission, Doubleday (Garden City, NY), 1960.

The Witching Lands, 1962.

Run, Shadow, Run, R. Hale (London, England), 1968.

Larks Will Sing, R. Hale (London, England), 1969.

Murgunstrumm and Others (collection), Carcosa (Chapel Hill, NC), 1977.

Legion of the Dead, Avon (New York, NY), 1979.

The Nebulon Horror, Dell (New York, NY), 1980.

The Evil, Charter (New York, NY), 1981.

Shades of Evil, Charter (New York, NY), 1982.

Conquering Kilmarnie, Macmillan (New York, NY), 1989.

The Lower Deep, Tor Books (New York, NY), 1990.

Lucifer's Eye, Tor Books (New York, NY), 1991.

The Sacred Cave, and Other Poems, Omega Cat Press (Cupertino, CA), 1992.

Also author of The Wild One. Contributor of fiction to numerous anthologies, including Devils in the Dark, edited by Robert Weinberg, Weinberg (Chicago, IL), 1979. Contributor to periodicals, including Saturday Evening Post, Cosmopolitan, Good Housekeeping, Redbook, Astounding Stories, Ghost Stories, Strange Tales, Weird Tales, Spicy Mystery Stories, Terror Tales, and Horror Stories.

SIDELIGHTS: "Hugh B. Cave's long and distinguished career as a weird-fiction writer spans most of the twentieth century and the enduring appeal of his tales of horror and the supernatural is attributable to his mastery of the fundamentals of good storytelling: plot, atmosphere and character," wrote Stefan Dziemianowicz in the St. James Guide to Horror, Ghost, and Gothic Writers. Cave began his career as a writer for the pulp magazines of the 1920s and 1930s, creating stories of terror for a wide variety of publications. His stories of the time, Dziemianowicz noted, concerned such staple subjects as "weird scientific experiments …, vengeance from beyond the grave …, the fatal family curse …, shape-shifting …, the haunted mansion …, and so forth. Cave, however, was adept at finding a new angle or approach to ideas long-mired in cliche."

In the mid-1930s Cave began writing for the shudder pulps, magazines featuring stories in which a mood of supernatural terror is eventually revealed to have a natural explanation. "Cave was one of the writers," Dziemianowicz explained, "most responsible for shaping the shudder … pulp sensibility, which transformed rural American towns into Gothic landscapes, local powerbrokers into megalomaniacal fiends, and ordinary men and women into paragons of imperiled virtue." While Cave wrote at least eight hundred stories for a variety of pulp magazines over the course of his career, he also began writing for national mainstream publications like the Saturday Evening Post during World War II. The author published several nonfiction books about the war effort in the South Pacific and later served as a war correspondent in the area. These books, such as "The Fightin'est Ship": The Story of the Cruiser "Helena," were admired by critics of the time.

After the end of World War II, Cave concentrated on short fiction and novels, primarily in the horror genre. His stories are often detailed and well-researched. One of his last novels was The Mountains of Madness. This book, like a number of Cave's fiction works, features voodoo as a story element. Calling the book an "entertaining short novel," a reviewer for Publishers Weekly noted that The Mountains of Madness is "classic shudder pulp fare."

Cave once told CA: "I have been writing for publication since I was in high school, and that was not yesterday. One thing I have always solidly believed is that a writer must write to be understood by his readers, and I fear this is now becoming an outmoded credo. Many of today's writers seem to think obscurity is a virtue and have apparently decided that a reader who can't understand them will think them 'artistic.'

"I saw this coming when I was for years a judge in the Scholastic Magazine's annual short story contests for high-school students. High-school English teachers were obviously teaching it. Now many of those students are writers with a dangerous contempt for discipline, and others are editors who mistakenly think that prose, to be effective, must be as murky as swamp water. It's a pity. The great writers of the past would not be remembered today had they fallen into this subtle trap."



Parente, Audrey, Pulp Man's Odyssey: The Hugh B. Cave Story, Starmont House (Mercer Island, WA), 1988.

St. James Guide to Horror, Ghost, and Gothic Writers, St. James Press (Detroit, MI), 1998.


Booklist, December 15, 2000, review of Long Live the Dead: Tales from the Black Mask, p. 789.

Kirkus Reviews, January 1, 2003, review of Come into My Parlor: Tales from Detective Fiction Weekly, pp. 27-28.

Publishers Weekly, November 27, 2000, review of Long Live the Dead: Tales from the Black Mask, p. 58; May 17, 2004, review of The Mountains of Madness, p. 38.


Hugh Cave Home Page, (August 22, 2005).



Chicago Tribune, July 3, 2004, section 2, p. 11.

Independent (London, England), June 30, 2004, p. 32.

Los Angeles Times, July 5, 2004, p. B11.

New York Times, July 9, 2004, p. A17.

Washington Post, July 1, 2004, p. B6.

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Cave, Hugh B(arnett) 1910-2004

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