Louise and Jean Dana  

The Dana Girls Mystery Stories
#11-20 (First Set)

The summaries for volumes 11 through 18 were written in their entirety by this site's webmaster, Jennifer White, in the early 2000s.  Since that time, the summaries have been copied to other series book websites without permission and without proper source attribution.
The summaries for volumes 19 and 21 have been adapted from the publisher summaries.
  #11 The Clue of the Rusty Key

The Danas are thrust into the middle of a dispute between Oliver Pritz Gormly and Jasper Conway.  The girls rescue Conway and his important papers when Gormly sets fire to Conway's store.  Later, when Pritz confronts the girls and orders them to turn over the papers, the girls refuse, earning themselves a new enemy.

Jean and Louise learn that Gormly is a swindler, cheating many people, including their classmate Lettie Briggs, who refuses to believe that Gormly is dishonest.  Jean and Louise can do little to help Lettie since she refuses to talk to the Danas, but the girls befriend several other victims as they search for clues.

The Clue of the Rusty Key
The girls face many difficulties before they finally bring Dr. Gormly to justice.
  #12 The Portrait in the Sand

The Danas' pottery teacher, Miss Warren, asks Jean and Louise to help her find her missing fiancé, F.B.I agent Richard Henley.  The girls and Miss Warren stay with her aunt and uncle, the Pattons, while they work on the mystery.  The Pattons fear that Henley has drowned, since his boat has washed up on shore.

The Danas find few clues but wonder if the strange hermit, Ham Gert knows anything about Henley.  Gert refuses to talk except to warn the girls away from the cliff and the beach.  The girls become suspicious of Gert and wonder about the strange cries they hear coming from the top of the cliff.  When the girls investigate, the cliff is deserted.

The Portrait in the Sand
The mystery proves difficult to solve, especially when Lettie Briggs appears on the scene and thwarts the Danas' investigation.  How the Danas discover what happened to Richard Henley and help the government will thrill the reader from start to finish.
  #13 The Secret in the Old Well

When Arlene Sherwood disappears, the Danas' only clue is that Arlene received a dire prediction from a psychic reader.  Did Arlene run away out of fear caused by the prediction, or is something far more sinister at play?  Jean and Louise believe that Arlene has been abducted, especially after they learn that Arlene's father has also disappeared.

Mrs. Sherwood soon receives a message from her husband, requesting that she place certain important drawings in an old well.  The drawings are very valuable to Mr. Sherwood's work, and the loss of the drawings will be a great blow.

The Secret in the Old Well
The girls deduce the location of the well and plan to substitute fake papers.  Their plans fail, leaving the girls in a dangerous position as they continue their search for their missing friend and her father.
  #14 The Clue in the Ivy

Louise and Jean travel to Old Bridge to spend the weekend with their friend, Carol Humfrey.  The girls stumble upon a mystery when the bell inside the Webster College chapel rings mysteriously at night.  They visit the chapel, only to be warned away by gossipy Miss Weatherspoon.

Miss Weatherspoon claims that the bell tower is haunted by the ghost of a young child who died of starvation while locked inside the bell tower.  She also hints that the ivy covering the church hides a great secret.

The Clue in the Ivy
The girls are intrigued, especially after they learn from Mr. Humfrey that the chapel reputedly holds a clue to a hidden treasure intended for the perpetual upkeep of the chapel.  Louise and Jean feel certain that the recent mysterious events mean that someone is searching for the treasure and resolve to find it before that person is successful.
  #15 The Secret of the Jade Ring

Fleurette Garnier, a new student to Starhurst, puzzles Jean and Louise.  The new French girl is reclusive and reluctant to join the new archery team, even though she is an expert archer.  The mystery surrounding Fleurette deepens when Fleurette briefly disappears, and her room is ransacked.

Jean's jade ring, a precious heirloom, is stolen shortly before Fleurette arrives at the school and appears later at a pawn shop.  The school's museum houses an imitation of a valuable jade ring which is also stolen.  Fleurette becomes flustered whenever these incidents are discussed, drawing suspicion to her.

The Secret of the Jade Ring
Although Jean and Louise believe that Fleurette may know something, they feel that the girl is honest.  Fleurette refuses to talk, and the Danas hope that they can solve the mystery before something terrible happens to Fleurette.
  #16 Mystery at the Crossroads

The Dana girls are plunged into another mystery during a visit to an old Civil War inn on a lonely country road.  They hear singing in the woods, see a ghost, and discover a strange spoon with a handle in the shape of a man's head.  The girls are shocked to learn from a jeweler that the spoon is cursed.

The girls visit the old inn again and meet Nura, a young gypsy who has run away to avoid marrying a man whom she does not love.  Nura instead longs to marry Stivo, but Stivo has been banished from the gypsy tribe for stealing a valuable silver platter.

Mystery at the Crossroads
Back at school, the spoon disappears from the Danas' room, apparently stolen!  Now the girls must find the spoon in case the story of the curse is true and must help Nura by exonerating Stivo and discovering who stole the silver platter.
  #17 The Ghost in the Gallery

A ghostly figure, a walking suit of armor, and a gargoyle in the prompter's box confront Jean and Louise Dana and their Starhurst classmates as they rehearse for a musical at Mozart Hall.

The owner, a retired singer, and the watchman assure the performers there is nothing to worry about.  The students wonder whether their imaginations are playing tricks on them.  Or are spooky things actually happening each time they visit the opera house?

The Ghost in the Gallery
A contest is held for an original song to be used in the play.  The Danas' music is stolen but they make a copy and submit it.  When their song is chosen as one of the winners, a listener says she has heard it before!  Louise and Jean face danger and intrigue, but they work hard to solve several mysteries and to win out over their enemies.
  #18 The Clue of the Black Flower

"You will sell me the flower!" insists the strange man.  Louise Dana is baffled as to why the man would value an artificial black orchid.  Shortly after Jean and Louise arrive at summer camp, the orchid is stolen.  The girls learn that not only does the orchid have a hidden value, but may provide a clue to a pair of twins who went missing years before in South America.

Through a series of amazing events, Jean and Louise learn what happened to the missing twins and discover the secret of the black orchid.

The Clue of the Black Flower
  #19 The Winking Ruby Mystery

"Save Carlo . . . winking ruby . . . hurry!" This plea uttered by Gino, a mysterious violinist, just before he lapses into a coma, launch Jean and Louise Dana on their first exciting adventure in Europe.  Is the mysterious "ruby" a gem, a girl, or part of a secret code?" The Danas must find out—and fast—because a life is at stake.

Danger stalks the young detectives from the moment they board the Balaska with their Uncle Ned, captain of the ocean liner.  Crossing the Atlantic they meet Enrico and Lena Dotti, professional hypnotists, who offer to help in solving the puzzle.  Jean wants to accept, but Louise is suspicious of the Dottis.

The Winking Ruby Mystery
In Europe, the sisters discover that Gino's family has disappeared, driven into hiding by blackmail and threats of mal occhio, the evil eye.  Probing deeper into the strange riddle, Jean and Louise become enmeshed in a mystery more frightening than the dungeon in which they are imprisoned.  How they extricate themselves and locate a fabulous crimson gem make a pulse-quickening story.
  #20 The Secret of the Swiss Chalet

Handsome Prince Rudolph Krisler's request for help in finding his family's long-lost heirlooms launch Jean and Louise Dana on another exciting mystery while on vacation in Europe.  The search for the priceless heirlooms leads from Germany to glorious Switzerland, where the girls and their traveling companions are swept up in adventure and intrigue more dangerous than a thundering avalanche.  First, their quest is hampered by a mysterious young man who claims to be a member of the Krisler family.  Next, a strange accident nearly costs Louise her life.
The Secret of the Swiss Chalet
Thoroughly mystified but equally determined to unmask their enemies, the girls follow a baffling trail of clues which finally leads them to an abandoned chalet in the Swiss Alps.  A trip to the St. Bernard Hospice, a perilous snowslide, a whirlwind escape on skis—all play an exciting part in unlocking the dangerous mystery.
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