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Baker Street Irregulars

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Baker Street Irregulars
Sherlock Holmes character
Created by Arthur Conan Doyle
Information
Nationality English

The Baker Street Irregulars are any of seven different groups, all named after the original, from various Sherlock Holmes Stories, in which they are a gang of young street children whom Holmes often employs to aid his cases.

Original

The original irregulars were a group of fictional characters featured in the Sherlock Holmes Stories. They were a group of street urchins who helped Holmes from time to time. The head of the group was called Wiggins. Holmes paid them a shiling a day (plus expenses), with a guinea prize (worth one pound and one shiling) for a vital clue. They first appeared in Conan Doyle's origional story, A Study in Scarlet (written in 1886, and published in 1887.) They also appear in the last novel, The Sign of Four, one of the chapters from this book is called The Baker Street Irregulars.

Special Operations Executive

The Special Operations Executive (SOE), tasked by Winston Churchill to "Set Europe ablaze" during World War II had their headquarters at 64 Baker Street and were often called the "Baker Street Irregulars" after Sherlock Holmes's fictional group of boys employed "to go everywhere, see everything, and overhear everyone," as they spied about London.

Modern Organizations

The Baker Street Irregulars is also the name of an organization of Sherlock Holmes enthusiasts founded in 1934 by Doubleday Editor Christopher Morely. Former members are known as "investitures" and the bear club titles derived from the Holmes stories.

The organization convenes every January in New York City for an annual dinner, which forms part of a weekend celebration and study involving other Sherlockian groups and enthusiasts. The present leader (referred to in group jargon as the "Wiggins") is Michael Whelan of Indianapolis, Indiana. The leading elected for life and selects his successor.

The BSI, as it calls itself, was once consideredthe preeminent Sherlockian group of the United States. There are also "scion societies" approved by the BSI in dozens of communities. (A list of these scions is maintained on Sherlocktron.)

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