The Straight Dope is a question and answers column that started in the Chicago Reader (a free weekly newspaper) in 1973. The article below is copied from the Straight Dope's website, and is a pretty good, concise "Sherlock Holmes 101." The article originally was published in 2003.
I've been a fan of The Straight Dope since the mid 1980s, when I read the first collection of articles, published in 1984 (as pictured to the left).
Did Sherlock Holmes really exist? April 8, 2003
I'm a stay-at-home dad, and Director of Music Ministries at a United Methodist Church in Mt. Juliet, TN. And a longtime fan of Sherlock Holmes.