Trixie Belden

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Trixie Belden

"Schoolgirl shamus" Trixie Belden was featured in mysteries beginning with #1 The Secret Mansion, published by the Whitman Company in 1948, and concluding with #39 The Mystery of the Galloping Ghost, issued in 1986. Julie Campbell wrote the first six volumes. Then the new publisher, Golden Press, hired ghostwriters who used the pseudonym Kathryn Kenny. Thirteen-year-old Trixie lived in rural New York. She, her brothers, and friends, all members of the club Bob Whites of the Glen, participated in American and international adventures, usually solving thefts. Trixie appealed to teenage readers because her lifestyle and dreams were more familiar to them than those of Nancy Drew. The Trixie Belden mysteries enabled readers to explore and solve problems vicariously. Set in a wholesome country environment, the stories were often didactic, criticizing wealthy socialites while praising the virtue of domesticity and self-sacrifice and reinforcing middle-and lower-class values. In each book, Trixie heroically rescued people or property from danger. Often impulsive and impatient, Trixie was always capable and honest, and worked to earn money for such charity projects as UNICEF. Adult fans continue to collect the out-of-print books and sponsored internet sites about Trixie.

—Elizabeth D. Schafer

Further Reading:

Mason, Bobbie Ann. The Girl Sleuth: A Feminist Guide. Old Westbury, The Feminist Press, 1975.