The Elves', Gnomes' and Little Men's Science Fiction, Chowder, and Marching Society was a San Francisco Bay area fan club. The name was inspired by the "Elves, Leprechauns, Gnomes, and Little Men's Chowder and Marching Society" from the comic strip "Barnaby." It bestowed the Invisible Little Man Award.
Little Men was founded in either 1948 or 1949; the traditional date in the club was 1948 but no documented activity has been found earlier than 1949. Meetings (initially every Friday night) and other activity was always centered in Berkeley. Founders included Anthony Boucher.
In the early days, the club published the Rhodomagnetic Digest; the club, or members of the club, put on the 1954 SFCon, a combined Worldcon and Westercon. In the 1960s, several club members (Ben Stark, Bill Donaho and Alva Rogers) were behind Pacificon II and Baycon, the 1964 and 1968 Worldcons in the Bay Area.
By the 1960s, the club ceased to have an associated fanzine, but meetings continued, usually at Ben Stark's house. Announcements were sent out by Alva Rogers in the form of mimeoed postcards. Later, meetings were usually held at George and Andrea Mitchell's house, followed by an aftermeeting at Brennan's restaurant. Around 1977, meetings began to be held in The Other Change of Hobbit bookstore, and Dave Nee began publishing meeting announcements as The Rhodomagnetic Bulletin, in tribute to the original Digest. During the '60s and '70s, the club attracted members from much of the Bay Area, and when PenSFA was founded in 1968, its meeting schedule was designed to never compete with Little Men's. In the 1980s, meetings became infrequent and eventually stopped. The last meeting was September 26th, 1997, at the Other Change on Shattuck.
Members have included: Karen Anderson, Poul Anderson, Ruth Berman, Anthony Boucher, David Bratman, Anne Braude, David Clark, Esther Cole, Lester Cole, Lloyd Eaton, Freff, Peter Graham, Al Halevy, Guy Lillian, Ed Meskys, D. B. Moore, Debbie Notkin, Diana Paxson, Thomas Quinn, Alva Rogers, Greg Shaw, Tom Whitmore.
The club ran a noted publicity campaign. In 1951, it announced a plan to claim a small triangular area of the Moon in the Mare Tranquillatis. Don Fabun and Les Cole proposed to file the claim with the UN, and it received widespread coverage in the newspapers.
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