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“my correspondence certainly has the charm of variety” [NOBL] 

The world knows Sherlock Holmes as a master detective – a professional who assists Scotland Yard in tracking down criminals. But in reality, in his role as a private consulting detective, there were instances when he was approached simply for advice, not because a crime was taking place.

In fact, there was an instance when Sherlock Holmes became so annoyed with being consulted for minor occurrences that he complained,
"As to my own little practice, it seems to be degenerating into an agency for recovering lost lead pencils and giving advice to young ladies from boarding-schools."
Some of the most memorable cases in which clients sought advice included:

  • "A Case of Identity" in which Mary Sutherland questioned what happened to her suitor (who turned out to be someone else entirely);
  • "The Noble Bachelor," where Lord Robert St. Simon lost his betrothed following their wedding ceremony;
  • "The Copper Beeches" (the story from which the quote above was taken), when Violet Hunter consults Sherlock Holmes about taking a governess job that paid twice as much as market rates;
  • "The Yellow Face" turned out to be nothing more than a cry for marriage counseling;
  • "The Missing Three-Quarter" was a matter of the whereabouts of a wayward athlete;
  • "The Sussex Vampire" concerned the verification of a mythical monster.

So, not all run-of-the-mill murder, blackmail, or robbery for Sherlock Holmes. We even begin to discern some of the unusual consulting he gave at Baker Street Elementary...

Baker Street Elementary follows the original adventures of Sherlock Holmes and John Watson, as they and their friends work through the issues of elementary school in Victorian London. An archive of all previous episodes can be viewed at www.bakerstreetelementary.org.