Thursday, October 30, 2014

Galen C. Colin (1890-1973)

Aka  Kent Bennett, Philip F. Deere, Collins Hafford, Frank Johnson Litchfield
Author, Printer, Publisher, Advertising Manager
Born September 5, 1890, Argonia, Kansas
Died June 14, 1973, Tucson, Arizona

Galen Cyril Colin was born on September 5, 1890, in Argonia, Kansas. He had a twin brother, Edward C. Colin, who specialized in genetics and headed the department of science at Chicago Teachers College. Galen Colin's older daughter, Virginia Colin Lehmann, toured with Ole Olesen and Chic Johnson and played in their show Hellzapoppin in New York. The younger, Betty Colin DePascal, wrote Western romances for the pulps.

Galen Colin left the University of Kansas in 1913 after three years of study in preparation for the printing business. He founded the Argonia Argosy in 1913 and the Satanta Chief in 1916, both small newspapers in his native state. In about 1919, he went to work as a printer for the Wichita Eagle. He returned to that job after twenty-eight years working as the advertising manager for the George Innes Dry Good Company in Wichita, from 1924 to 1952 or thereabouts.

Colin wrote hundreds of stories for Western pulps from 1927 to 1951, some under the Wild West Weekly house name of Collins Hafford. He also occasionally used the pen name Kent Bennett. His work appeared in Cowboy Stories, Lariat Story Magazine, The Lone Ranger Magazine, Popular Western, Thrilling Western, Wild West Weekly, and others. Lum Yates was his long-running series character.

Colin also wrote two dozen novels. A partial list:
  • Storm King Rides (1933)
  • The Lobos of Devil's Sink (1939)
  • Battling Buckaroos (1940)
  • Ramrod of the K Bar (1940)
  • Dry Gulch (1942)
  • Lone-Wolf Lawman (1943)
  • Pistol Pards (1943)
  • Rio Red (1944)
  • Home Spread (1951)
  • Buzzards of Bitter Creek
His four stories for Weird Tales have intriguing titles: "Snake" (Jan. 1924), "Eyes" (May/June/July 1924), "The Song Eternal" (Dec. 1924), and "Teeth" (Apr. 1926). "Snake" was his first sale as a professional writer. It earned him the grand sum of $6. "Teeth" was reprinted in the British anthology More Not at Night, edited by Christine Campbell Thomson (1926) and in a paperback edition called Not at Night (1960).

Galen C. Colin died on June 14, 1973, in Tucson, Arizona, and was buried at East Lawn Palms Cemetery and Mortuary in Tucson.

Galen C. Colin's Stories in Weird Tales
"Snake" (Jan. 1924)
"Eyes" (May/June/July 1924)
"The Song Eternal" (Dec. 1924)
"Teeth" (Apr. 1926)

Further Reading
Many articles in Kansas newspapers.

Storm King Rides (1933)
Battling Buckaroos (1940)
Flyin' M Buckaroo, a British edition (date unknown). Observers and fans have asked the question Is science fiction dying?, but has anybody asked Are Westerns dying? Does anyone care in the same way that they care about science fiction? Put another way, why should science fiction hold a special place when other genres have fallen by the wayside? Why are there no more railroad stories, boxing stories, or Oriental adventure stories? Did those genres have their time and place, and should they now be relegated to the past? If so, why shouldn't science fiction also have had its glory, a glory now past? 
Not at Night (1960), with Galen C. Colin's story "Teeth."

Updated on May 3, 2023.
Text copyright 2014, 2023 Terence E. Hanley


  1. Galen C. Colin is my Grandfather. He did pass away in Tucson, AZ. This is awesome that you have this page on him. Thank you for bringing back so many good memories!!

    1. Thanks, Julie,

      I'm glad you enjoyed my article. I have updated the information therein.


    2. Hello, Galen was my great uncle, my Grandfather Charles’s older brother. I really enjoyed reading about him and learning what a talented and prolific writer he was.

  2. I found this site while researching Collins Hafford. Now I know it was a pseudonym of Galen Collin! Thanks! I am posting a collection of his stories for sale on Ebay published in Wild West Weekly in 1931 that were bound into a book. I just listed two of the books of 54 stories by Collins Hafford, and I have one more book of stories yet to post where he uses his real name. What a great author!

  3. Sadly, westerns are dying. And ... heresy, I know, but it is a more important genre than either horror or science fiction.

    However, I believe many of the same forces that are killing science fiction has already buried the western...

    1. Hi, Emery,

      I looked just now for an Internet Western Fiction Database and came up empty. There is a Western Movie Database and a Spaghetti Western Database, but not a pulp fiction or paperback database that I found. That's a shame, for we could use something like that. (I think there should be a Romance Fiction Database and a Crime, Detective, Thriller, & Suspense Fiction Database, too.)

      You have made two interesting and provocative statements in your comment: 1) That Westerns are "a more important genre than either horror or science fiction"; and 2) That "many of the same forces that are killing science fiction have already buried the western." Would you like to write more on those topics?

      Thanks for your comment.


  4. Hi all! Galen was my grandmother’s uncle, not sure what that makes him to me. I have an original Storm King Rides Again. Storm King Rides original is also in the family. Wonder if I’m related to Julie (above)!? I’m Claire 😊