Max von Gerlach aka Max Stork – The Original Great Gatsby?

“He started as one man I knew and then changed into myself.” That’s how the author described his most famous creation, Jay Gatsby. And on the evidence currently available there’s no reason to doubt him. Discoveries made by Matthew J. Bruccoli and Horst Kruse suggest that the ‘one man’ he knew was Max Gerlach, whose…

George Shanks and the Protocols Matrix

On the 100th anniversary of the book being exposed as a forgery, a recent discovery I made in the archives in Dublin suggests that the 1920 British translation of The Protocols of the Elders of Zion (The Jewish Peril) was not the work of ‘lone wolf’ anti-Semite George Shanks, but part of a sophisticated propaganda…

Monocled Mutineer – Mutiny at the BBC

Why did Bleasdale’s drama cause such a media storm? Why was the BBC Director Alasdair Milne removed? And what were Willie Whitelaw’s links to Toplis’ killer?

The Usual ‘Unusual’ Suspects

“I was immediately struck by the number of young Englishmen dotted about; all well dressed, all looking a little hungry, and all talking in low, earnest voices to solid and prosperous Americans.” The Great Gatsby I’d like to go back to another Max Gerlach conundrum. On Max’s 1942 World War II Draft Registration Card, Gerlach…

F. Scott Fitzgerald: A Trip to Europe, May-July 1921

In spring 1921, the 24-year old author, F. Scott Fitzgerald embarked on a three month tour of Europe with his new wife Zelda. The trip, which would last from May to July would see them loaf awkwardly through several of Europe’s most popular tourist destinations, meet several well-known people, visit several shrines and hob-nob with…

Designs on Gatsby: Max Gerlach, Francis Cugat and F. Scott Fitzgerald.

Max von Gerlach, an associate of gangster Arnold Rothstein and author Scott Fitzgerald, made regular trips to Havana. At one time, Havana was also the home of Francis Cugat, the Spanish-Cuban artist who designed the famous dust-jacket for Fitzgerald’s 1925 novel, The Great Gatsby. Here we explore the possibility that it may have been Gerlach…

I Had a Dream – The Mysterious Death of Father Gapon

A detailed look at Father Georgy Gapon, the Russian Orthodox priest who led the Bloody Sunday Revolution in 1905 and who was brutally murdered in March 1906. This essay explores the various responses to his death and the role it may have played in the development of Russia’s Zionist and Revolutionary movements. At two o’…