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Overview (3)

Born in West Virginia, USA
Died in New York City, New York, USA
Birth NameDavis Alexander Grubb

Mini Bio (1)

Novelist and short-story writer Davis Grubb was a descendant of one of the oldest, most prominent families in the Moundsville, West Virginia, area. He mined the area's history for some of his works, including his award-winning first novel "The Night of the Hunter", based on a thief who romanced, then killed, two widows he met through "lonely-hearts" ads, and also slaughtered three children. Grubb was offered the opportunity to write the ground-breaking 1955 film's screenplay; instead, he drew elaborate sketches of the characters for director Charles Laughton and star Robert Mitchum, who were delighted with them. Grubb studied painting, but when his vision deteriorated he was forced to turn to writing for radio.

The actual "lonely-hearts killer" was hanged in Moundsville's Gothic-style West Virginia Penitentiary, which Grubb employed in "Night of the Hunter" and his other novel, "Fool's Parade", also made into a fine movie, starring James Stewart, Kurt Russell and George Kennedy. The penitentiary was closed in 1995 because its small 5x7 cells didn't meet current requirements for space allotted a prisoner; the so-called "haunted prison" has been the site for at least three national TV series involving ghosts.

Grubb's displaying his home area's warts (including corruption, racism and violent suppression of unions) made him a pariah to some in Moundsville. Wes Craven's short-lived TV series Glory Days (2002) portrays a similar situation about a best-selling novelist returning from the Northeast to his rural birthplace. The series featured 'Poppy Montgomery', Theresa Russell and Frances Fisher. "Glory" was a name Grubb used in his writing for a fictionalized Moundsville.

The macabre events, vivid characters and evocative descriptions in Grubb's short stories also made them perfect subjects for the TV series' The Alfred Hitchcock Hour (1962) and Night Gallery (1969).

- IMDb Mini Biography By: David Stevens (qv's & corrections by A. Nonymous)

Trivia (1)

Attended the Carnegie Institute of Technology (now Carnegie Mellon University), 1938-1939.

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