MARY ROBERTS RINEHART <1876-1958> was born in Pittsburgh. She trained at the predecessor of Shadyside Hospital in Pittsburgh as a nurse and graduated in 1896. She married Dr. Stanley Marshall Rinehart. In 1903, the Rineharts lost their savings in a stock market crash. That year, to earn income, she published 45 short stories in magazines. In 1907, she wrote The Circular Staircase , her first successful novel. It has been made into a play and several movies. From first publication to the time of her death, it sold a million-and-a-quarter copies according to The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. She was the world's first female best-selling mystery writer. According to crime critic and novelist Dorothy B. Hughes, "she 'has been and continues to be' the most important American woman mystery writer." She was also a regular contributor to the Saturday Evening Post. In World War I, she was the first woman war correspondent at the Belgian Front. While a war correspondent, she landed the first-ever interview with England's Queen Mary. From the 1920s until 1935, the family lived in Washington, D.C. where Dr. Rinehart was appointed to the Veterans Administration. He died in 1932. Mary and her sons moved to New York City. There, she and her sons co-founded the Farrar & Rinehart publishing house.