The Black Doctor: And Other Tales of Terror and Mystery

By A. Conan Doyle | Go to book overview

IX
THE MAN WITH THE WATCHES

THERE are many who will still bear in mind the singular circumstances which, under the heading of the Rugby Mystery, filled many columns of the daily Press in the spring of the year 1892. Coming as it did at a period of exceptional dulness, it attracted perhaps rather more attention than it deserved, but it offered to the public that mixture of the whimsical and the tragic which is most stimulating to the popular imagination. Interest drooped, however, when, after weeks of fruitless investigation, it was found that no final explanation of the facts was forthcoming, and the tragedy seemed from that time to the present to have finally taken its place in the dark catalogue of inexplicable and unexpiated crimes. A recent communication (the authenticity of which appears to be above question) has, however, thrown some new and clear light upon the matter. Before laying it before the public it would be as well, perhaps, that I should refresh their memories as to the singular facts upon which this commentary is founded. These facts were briefly as follows:

At five o'clock on the evening of the 18th of March in the year already mentioned a train left Euston Station for Manchester. It was a rainy, squally day, which grew wilder as it progressed, so it was by no means the weather in which any one would travel who was not driven to do so by necessity. The train, however, is a favourite one among Manchester business men who are returning from town, for it does the

-179-

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The Black Doctor: And Other Tales of Terror and Mystery
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Tales of Terror 7
  • I - The Horror of the Heights 9
  • II - The Leather Funnel 31
  • III - The New Catacomb 47
  • IV - The Case of Lady Sannox 66
  • V - The Terror of Blue John Gap 80
  • VI - The Brazilian Cat 103
  • Tales of Mystery 131
  • VII - The Lost Special 133
  • VIII - The Beetle-Hunter 157
  • IX - The Man with the Watches 179
  • X - The Japanned Box 202
  • XI - The Black Doctor 219
  • XII - The Jew's Breastplate 244
  • XIII - The Nightmare Room 270
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