Adams, Jack

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Collaborative pseudonym of US authors Tilghman Answorth Howard Lowe (1850-1894) and Mary Amanda Lowe (1856-1902). It may be that Mary Lowe's main involvement in their sf novel, Nequa, or The Problem of the Ages (1900; with additional nonfiction 2015), was her gaining publication for it after her husband's death. However, the copyright notice in the first edition lists only A O Grigsby and Mary P Lowe; Grigsby was the publisher of the newspaper Equity, jointedly edited by himself and Mary Lowe, in which the story was serialized. Mark O J Esping argues in the 2015 edition that some passages can be traced to speeches delivered by Grigsby before the book's appearance, and that he too seems to have been a collaborator.

The tale carries its protagonist "Jack Adams" – in fact a wronged woman named Cassie – to polar regions, where she and her bigoted fiancé (who does not recognize her as Adams) are rescued by the inhabitants of Altruria (see William Dean Howells, though there is no explicit connection between his Utopia and this one). The Altrurians take them to their country, which lies inside a Hollow Earth, demonstrate their flying machines and other marvels, and explain their sexually egalitarian, non-Christian culture (see Feminism). Nequa, as "Jack Adams" now calls herself, will marry her fiancé only if he attains some wisdom. Nequa is a surprisingly enjoyable salutary tale. [JC]

Tilghman Answorth Howard Lowe

born Morgan County, Indiana: May 1850

died Topeka, Kansas: 3 January 1894

Mary Amanda Prather Lowe

born Kentucky: 13 August 1856

died Topeka, Kansas: 22 January 1902

Alcanoan [also given as Alcanon or Alcanaan] O Grigsby

born 1837

died Kentucky: 3 October 1925

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