Weird Tales was not the most valuable property of the pulp era, but it does have an interesting history. It ran initially from 1923 to 1954. It reprinted the works of many classic authors, playwrights, and poets including Oscar Wilde, John Keats, and Bram Stoker, author of Dracula. Its genres of choice were horror and fantasy, with a dash of the macabre. The somewhat risqué cover art by Margaret Brundage drove up dwindling circulation numbers.
Weird Tales encountered a range of financial challenges, nearly succumbing to bankruptcy several times. Its most celebrated contributor was science fiction author H.P. Lovecraft. Lovecraft was even approached with a lucrative offer to take on the position of editor, but he declined. While Lovecraft died in obscurity, he posthumously gained great fame for his influential works of horror fiction. His only published work in his lifetime was in the pages of pulp magazines. Weird Tales is unofficially known as “the magazine that never dies”, because it was revived after each downturn in readership or content. Its most recent revival occurred in 2011 when a new publisher bought it. To learn more about Weird Tales and all the other fantastic pulps, JMU Libraries encourages you to participate in the Pulp Studies Symposium on the weekend of October 7, 2016!