Edythe Eyde

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Tigrina (1940s). Courtesy of Rob Hansen

(November 7, 1921 – December 22, 2015)

Edythe DeVinney Eyde, more widely remembered by her pseudonym Tigrina, was an LA area fan and active member of LASFS, serving as secretary in the mid-1940s. She also used the anagrammatic penname Lisa Ben.

Raised in rural Fremont, California, Eyde wrote her first letter to VOM as a college sophomore at Mills College in 1941 under the name “Tigrina.” She became lifelong friends with VOM publisher Forrest J. Ackerman and contributed art, reviews and poetry to numerous fanzines.

In 1945, 4E publicly proposed marriage to Tigrina in a letter in Walt Dunkelberger’s Fanews 166 (June 19, 1945). In #170, on July 3, Tigrina declined. Dunk avowed both letters were legit.

While working as a secretary at RKO Studios in 1947, she began publishing the first known lesbian publication in America, Vice Versa, a carbonzine (online here), during slow times at work. Supportive of her alternative lifestyle, Ackerman wrote reviews for the zine under the name “Laurajean Emayne.” In a 1995 interview, Eyde said:

Well, there was this one guy who was very sympathetic toward the girls, and he belonged to the science fiction group where Jim Kepner belonged, and his name was Forrest A_______. So he would — he liked writing for different homemade magazines of the science fiction kind. In fact, I think he had one or two of them himself. And so he would write off this stuff and give it to me, and then being that he was a friend, I sort of had to include it in the magazine — which I really, to tell you the truth, didn’t want to do, but don’t say that in your book because if he reads it, it will hurt his feelings. And he’s older than I am, and he’s a dear old soul — I don’t want to hurt his feelings.

Edythe lived and worked in the LA area for the rest of her life, writing and performing folk music, reading science fiction and advocating for cat adoption.

Some say that she published the first filkzine, entitled Hymn to Satan, which may have contained words for music for a Black Mass the she and other occultists hoped to perform.

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