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Judson Philips, a Mystery Writers of America Grand Master Award winner, was born in Northfield, Mass. in 1903. He began his writing career in the pulp fiction magazines in 1924, while earning his journalism degree from Columbia University.
In 1939 he won the $10,000 Dodd Mead Mystery Contest, using the pen name Hugh Pentecost, for "Cancelled in Red." This marked a turning point in his career, as he created a second body of work for slick magazines and paperbacks as Pentecost.
He continued using both names simultaneously, living between New York and Connecticut, producing more than 500 works. One of his best-known series was The Park Avenue Hunt Club, which appeared in "Detective Fiction Weekly." He wrote dozens of paperback novels featuring characters like Julian Quist and John Jericho.
Philips owned a newspaper, and wrote columns for other newspapers. He owned an equity summer stock theater, “The Sharon Playhouse,” where he wrote and produced plays. In the meantime, he wrote radio and film scripts for movies and television. Later he hosted a political and arts program in Connecticut’s “Northwest Corner,” broadcast out of Torrington.
Philips was married five times and had four children. He died of complications from emphysema in 1989, at age 85, in Canaan, Connecticut.
To learn more about Judson P. Philips and his colorful life and career, read "Once a Pulp Man: The Secret Life of Judson P. Philips as Hugh Pentecost" by Audrey Parente.