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Thomas W Duncan

Thomas Duncan (1905 - 1987) was born in Casey, Iowa, and succeeded in getting his articles and short stories published whilst still in his teens. He studied at Drake University (pre-law), changing to Harvard, where he studied writing. During his time at Drake University, he travelled during the summer with a Chautauqua theatrical group, on which experience he later based his first novel, O Chautauqua. This, together with Ring Horse, his one horse book, did not sell well. After a stint at Grinnell College from 1942 - 1944, where he was Director of Public Relations, he and his wife Actea Carolyn Young moved to the West, and Duncan began to write full time. His next circus book, Gus the Great, was a huge success, and his literary career was launched.

Finding the book: easy to find in the USA. It was not printed in the UK.

Links and sources

Thomas W Duncan’s papers are in the University of Iowa library

Terri A. Wear: Horse Stories, an Annotated Bibliography, Scarecrow Press, 1987

A review of Gus the Great

National Library of Congress

Thanks to Lisa Catz for the photograph

Biblography - horse books only

Ring Horse

Doubleday, Doran, New York, 1940, 239 pp

Lippincott, Philadelphia, 1952, 170 pp

“Young struggling attorney Paul Reese gets involved with circus clown Dan Gilpin and his roisin
back ring horse Silver Fire and with the little girl who goes against her father’s wishes in order to
visit the clown and his magnificent white horse.”