Logo--kathleenybarbo.comWhen I set out to write a heroine equal to the task of catching the charming villain Will Tucker in Sadie’s Secrets, there was no doubt Sadie Callum, the well-bred Louisiana-born daughter of sugar cane planter, would be a Pinkerton agent. After all, what other nineteenth century organization allowed women not only to populate their ranks well before they could vote, but also made great use of their unique talents?

 Early on, Alan Pinkerton respected the ability of a woman to go where a man might not be allowed. Thus, he made sure that he always had a few well-trained ladies in his employ for those difficult cases where a feminine touch was needed.

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 Pinkerton agents—both male and female–were well trained and well paid. Their expertise in surveillance was beyond comparison. Allan Pinkerton was an early proponent of using female agents, determining that often it was the lady who was least suspected of being a detective.

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 One famous lady Pinkerton was the widow, Kate Warne, thought to be the clean-shaven person standing behind Mr. Pinkerton in the photograph from the Library of Congress archives. Kate Warne, a woman who it is claimed walked into the Pinkerton offices seeking a secretarial job only to leave as a detective, is one of the more memorable Pinkertons, and definitely the first female agent.Kathleen 3

 Among Mrs. Warne’s many accomplishments was the detection of a plot against President-elect Abraham Lincoln. Not only did she learn of the plot, but she also saved the president’s life by helping to smuggle him into Washington DC for his inauguration disguised as her invalid brother. Later, during the Civil War, it has been alleged that Mrs. Warne was quite adept at fitting in on both sides of the lines and brought back valuable intelligence to the Pinkerton offices. Quite the accomplishment considering women were not yet accepted as valuable members of any other crime fighting organization.lKathleen

 And although Sadie Callum is only a fictional detective, I believe Alan Pinkerton would heartily approve of her methods of bringing Will Tucker to justice once and for all. Take a peek at Sadie’s Secret, the third book in The Secret Lives of Will Tucker series, and find out just how she manages such a feat.

Post a comment and be entered into a drawing for a print copy of Sadie’s Secret!



About Sadie’s Secret (releasing February 1, 2014 from Harvest House Publishers): 

Louisiana, 1890—Sarah Louise “Sadie” Callum is a master of disguise, mostly due to her training as a Pinkerton agent but also from evading overprotective brothers as she grew up. When she takes on a new assignment with international connections, she has no idea her new cover will lead her on the adventure of a lifetime.        

Undercover agent William Jefferson Tucker is not looking for marriage—pretend or otherwise—but his past is a secret, his twin brother has stolen his present, and his future is in the hands of the lovely Sadie Callum. Without her connections to the world of upper-crust New Orleans and Newport, Jefferson might never find a way to clear his name and solve the art forgery case that has eluded him for years. Only God can help these two secret agents find a way to solve their case and uncover the truth about what is going on in their hearts.

Read the first chapter of Sadie’s Secret here: 

 About Kathleen Y’Barbo:

Bestselling author Kathleen Y’Barbo is a multiple Carol Award and RITA nominee of forty-five novels with almost two million copies of her books in print in the US and abroad. A tenth-generation Texan and certified family law paralegal, she has been nominated for a Career Achievement Award as well a Reader’s Choice Award and several Top Picks by Romantic Times magazine.

A member of American Christian Fiction Writers, Romance Writers of America, and a former member of the Texas Bar Association Paralegal Division, she is currently a proud military wife and an expatriate Texan cheering on her beloved Texas Aggies from north of the Red River. To find out more about Kathleen or connect with her through social media, check out her website at www.kathleenybarbo.com.



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41 thoughts on “LEGEND OF THE LADY DETECTIVE by Kathleen Y’Barbo”

  1. Wow! How interesting that women were detectives too back then and paid well for it. It amazing what Kate Warne did for Abe Lincoln.

    Your book would be an interesting read.

  2. I love this post! I am intrigued by the Pinkerton agents and would love to learn more about Miss Sadie in this wonderful book. Maybe she will reveal a “secret or two.”

  3. I hadn’t realized that there were female detectives in the early 1800’s. In fact, I’ve never heard of Kate Warne and her involvement in an earlier assassination attempt against President Lincoln. What an amazing, brave lady!

    “Allan Pinkerton was an early proponent of using female agents, determining that often it was the lady who was least suspected of being a detective.” Mr Pinkerton sounds like an intelligent man too.

    I’d love to read about Sadie and how she uncovers the masquerading twin of Will Turner.

  4. Hi Kathleen, That is so cool how Kate Warne was the First Lady detective and hadn’t even planned on it. I’ve read a lot of her past was burned in the Chicago fire which is sad for all the history that were missing out on. Thank you for sharing. Love hearing and learning about history.
    jennydtipton at gmail dot com

  5. Welcome back, Kathleen! We’re always thrilled when you come to visit. Your blog is so interesting! I’d love to have known Kate Warne. I’ll bet she was something else. And that she was worked so closely at times with Abraham Lincoln is amazing. What an honor. She must’ve been an outstanding lady detective and a true American.

    Sadie’s Secret sounds like a very entertaining book to read. Love that cover! Wishing you tons of success.

  6. Of course women make the best agents! Sit down and knit while people are talking, and men will assume you haven’t heard a word they said (based on experiences in college, where professors showed some definite skepticism over my ability to knit and learn at the same time [roll of the eyes]). I have no doubt that the Pinkerton women were highly successful!

  7. What a fascinating post. Learning about Kate Warne is delightful and interesting. Sadie sounds captivating and special.

  8. Sadie sounds like an enterprising and unique woman. This book would be enthralling since the detective aspect is unique.

  9. Hi, Kathleen! I love this post! Kate Warne’s history as the first female agent is fascinating. I can’t wait to meet your fictional detective, Sadie Callum! I know her story will be memorable as well!!

  10. Thank you for all the comments! You ladies are up early on a Saturday morning!

    I hadn’t heard that Kate Warne’s records were burned in the Chicago fire but it makes sense. Yes, I would love to have met her. I’m guessing she was quite a woman!

    So what is everyone reading–other than Sadie’s Secrets??!!

  11. I have always been intrigued with the Pinkerton agents. Thank you for sharing some history about the first woman agent. It’s amazing that she was accepted back in the day when women were to be just wives and mothers.

    I would love to win a copy of Sadie’s Secret.

    Smiles & Blessings,
    Cindy W.

    countrybear52 AT yahoo DOT com

  12. Really enjoyed reading about the Pinkerton’s using women as spies. Very interesting.
    I have yet to read a book by this author so would welcome the chance to do so.

  13. Welcome, Kathleen. I had no idea that Pinkertons had lady detectives. That is really great. Your story sounds like a really good one. Love detectives of any era and especially if history is involved.

  14. I read another book about a lady Pinkerton. I found it fascinating! Now I want to read your book to learn more. I love it that women were able to step into this role and succeed! And she went for a secretary job and he saw she had so much more potential! I can only imagine what she thought when she left the building that day. “What just happened” I am sure went through her mind. And What am I doing? Thanks for sharing more information! It is a subject I am interested in right now amd can’t wait to read your book!

  15. This was very interesting Kathleen. So, they met on an international job. I like that I learned something new about our history. That’s one thing I like about this site. I had never heard about the top man’s wife. Smart lady it seems.
    I would love to win. Maxie mac262(at)me(dot)com

  16. Thanks for the interesting post. I never thought about how women became detectives. I love stories about the Pinkerton agents. Would love to win and read this one!
    tscmshupe [at] pemtel [dot] net

  17. Kathleen, what an interesting post about Mr. Pinkerton and his use of ladies and gentleman as detectives. I loved all the facts concerning Mrs. Warne. She must have been one creative lady!
    thank you for all the information and great work incorporating that into your book. This will be on my TBR list whether I win or not.

  18. Great post! I didn’t realize they had women detectives back then. I thought women were just wives and mothers. I guess you do learn something new every day. Your books sound fantastic and I would love to read it.

  19. Pinkertons! Awesome! Thanks for the info. Where did you find the information on the Pinkertons? The 4th book in my series is going to have a Pinkerton detective as the main character and I am having a heard time finding research materials. Thanks!

  20. I didn’t know that about the Pinkerton agency 🙂 WOW… you learn something new everyday! Thanks for sharing and congrats on the new release!

  21. He probably started using women when he fell in love with a womon who was for the south her name was Rose. She died bring gold to the south by drowning, the gold weighed her down she had it sewed in her dress they found her on the beach. They made a movie on it. I hope I get a chance to read the book.

      • Pinkerton used the name E J Allen he was after the southern spy Rose O’neal Greenhow. His story is in the book Secret Missions of the Civil War by Philip Van Doren Stern. The made it into a movie. It was then he foundered the Pinkerton Agency.

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