|Wyatt Rainey Blassingame|
6 February 1909|
9 Jan 1985|
Anna Marie, Manatee, FL
Wyatt Rainey Blassingame (6 February 1909 – 1985), a.k.a. W.B. Rainey, was the author of more than 600 short stories and articles for national magazines, four adult novels and dozens of juvenile nonfiction books. In the 1930s, Blassingame wrote for the "Weird menace" horror pulps such as Terror Tales and Dime Mystery. His weird short stories have recently been republished in three collections edited by John Pelan, published by Dancing Tuatara Press. Four of his juvenile nonfiction books were written for the Landmark book series: The French Foreign Legion, The U.S. Frogmen of World War II, Combat Nurses of World War II, and Medical Corps Heroes of World War II.
He was born in Demopolis, Alabama, on 6 February 1909 to Wyatt Childs Blassingame (a teacher) and Maude Lurton Blassingame. He married Gertrude Olsen in 1936 and had two daughters, Peggy and April. He served in the United States Navy during World War II and received a Bronze Star and a Presidential Unit Citation. He was educated at Howard College in Birmingham, Alabama, the University of Alabama, and New York University, graduating in 1952. Blassingame made every effort to make his books as accurate as possible, and disapproved of fictionalizing juvenile history merely for the benefit of drama. Many of his books were chosen as Junior Book-of-the-Month selections, Junior Literary Guild selections and other honors. He died in his Florida home in 1985.
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