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Taylorology #1 (1985)

Taylorology was a fanzine centered on the unsolved 1922 murder of Hollywood silent film director William Desmond Taylor. The first issue was published in 1985, and two more printed issues followed. In 1993 it switched to monthly electronic publication which continued until 2000. The editor was Bruce Long, a staff member at Arizona State University. In addition to published issues, the Taylorology web site[1] has supplemental material pertaining to the Taylor case.



Although there was no fixed limitation on the subject matter, the contents of Taylorology generally could be categorized into the following areas:

  • Facts and rumors pertaining to the Taylor murder, with maximum use of rare contemporary source material.
  • Taylor's life and film career.
  • The impact of the Taylor murder on Hollywood and America.
  • The life and careers of individuals associated with Taylor, or individuals regarded as suspects in the Taylor murder.
  • The silent film industry in which Taylor worked.
  • Examination of various theories regarding the Taylor murder.
  • Reviews of books, magazine articles, and televised documentaries (City Confidential, Perfect Crimes, Mysteries and Scandals) pertaining to the Taylor murder.
  • Other Hollywood scandals during the same era as the Taylor murder.


The quantity of rare contemporary source material contained within Taylorology has given it a scholarly influence far beyond the confines of the William Desmond Taylor case. A few of the books which have cited Taylorology, and the source material it contains, are:

  • Daly, Nicholas (2004), Literature, Technology, and Modernity, Cambridge University Press, ISBN 0521833922  
  • Marez, Curtis (2004), Drug Wars: The Political Economy of Narcotics, University of Minnesota Press, ISBN 0816640602  
  • Charlie Keil, Shelley Stamp, ed. (2004), American Cinema's Transitional Era: Audiences, Institutions, Practices, University of California Press, ISBN 0520240278
  • Rickman, Gregg (2001), The Film Comedy Reader, Limelight Editions, ISBN 0879102950  
  • Higham, Charles (2004), Murder in Hollywood: Solving a Silent Screen Mystery, University of Wisconsin Press, ISBN 0299203603  
  • Shapiro, Harry (2004), Shooting Stars: Drugs, Hollywood and the Movies, Serpent's Tail, ISBN 1852426519  
  • Hammill, Faye (2007), Women, Celebrity, and Literary Culture Between the Wars, University of Texas Press, ISBN 0292716443  
  • Sagert, Kelly Boyer (2009), Flappers: A Guide to an American Subculture, Greenwood Press, ISBN 0313376905  


  1. ^ Taylorology web site, Taylorology mirror site


  • "A Story to Die For," Roth, Evan, CyberSurfing Column, Washington Post, January 12, 1995.
  • [Taylorology is] "an amazing historical record...a wonderful repository for innumerable interesting silent-era stories." Fleming, E. J. (2007), Wallace Reid: The Life and Death of a Hollywood Idol, McFarland, viii.
  • "Taylorology...filled with reproductions of clippings, incisive comments, and cross-references to other sources of information...was a constant source of scholarly entertainment, amusement, and enlightenment." Higham, Charles (2004), Murder in Hollywood: Solving a Silent Screen Mystery, University of Wisconsin Press, 207.
  • "The most exhaustive source for the study of this seminal Hollywood moment is the massive web site compiled by Bruce Long, Master of Taylorology, whose hypertext study winds through the labyrinth of news reports and almost infinite sources on any person even remotely touched by the affair." Louvish, Simon (2003), Keystone: the Life and Clowns of Mack Sennett, Faber and Faber, 181.
  • "Ties That Bind: Searching for the Motion Picture Directors Association," Mitchell, Lisa, DGA Magazine, November 2001. Retrieved on 2008-03-21. Taylorology is cited as one of "the few places on earth to find more than passing remarks about the MPDA."
  • "Recommended site" designation on Silent Era's list of Notable Websites. Retrieved on 2008-03-21.
  • Included in "The best silent movie links on the web" from Silents are Golden. Retrieved on 2008-03-21.


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