Nell Martin

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Nell Martin (1890—1961) was an American author from Illinois specializing in light-hearted mysteries and short stories. She was at one time the girlfriend of writer Dashiell Hammett. She also published under the names Nell Columbia Boyer Martin and Columbia Boyer.

She wrote Lord Byron of Broadway, which MGM made into a movie in 1930.

Her "Maisie" short stories were published in Top Notch Magazine in 1927-1928 and later inspired a movie and radio series starring Ann Sothern.[1][2]


Martin wrote five novels and many short stories. Her novels are:[3]

  • The Constant Simp (1927), which was reportedly a parody of The Constant Nymph
  • The Mosaic Earring (1927)
  • Lord Byron of Broadway: A Novel (1928)
  • The Other Side of the Fence: A Novel (1929)
  • Lovers Should Marry (1933), which she dedicated to Hammett.


  1. ^ Publication details are from Yesterday's Faces: Dangerous Horizons, Robert Sampson.
  2. ^ Hammet links her stories to the movie version of Maisie in letters collected in Selected Letters of Dashiell Hammett: 1921-1960.
  3. ^ Dates and titles are from: A Dashiell Hammett companion, Robert L. Gale