Back in December 2004, Stephen Marsh auctioned large sections of his gaming collection on eBay, including a manuscript dealing with the development of American Gothic, an RPG setting developed by Sandy Petersen, Marc Hutchison and Marsh featuring Lovecraftian elements. The manuscript Stephen put up on eBay dealt with his own treatment for American Gothic and of which Sandy has said "...you could consider this the alpha version of CoC".
Now in 2006, courtesy of Mike Hurley and Jarred Wallace we are able to bring you a copy of Marsh's original American Gothic manuscript.
From Sandy Petersen: "Steve is an old friend of mine, and he did in fact help germinate the American Gothic idea (the name was his idea, for instance). Another pal of mine, Marc Hutchison, was involved from the start. Steve wrote up a treatment basing it largely on D&D..."
Written in 1977, this is currently the best thing we have towards some sort of development ms. for the Call of Cthulhu roleplaying game [or not] and provides a fascinating look into a type of game that would eventually lead to the creation of CoC [or not].
Download the American Gothic manuscript. (PDF, 6 pages, 3.04 MB, opens in a new window)
Download American Gothic letter of authentication. (PDF, 1 page, 562 KB, opens in new window)
Our thanks again to Mike and Jarred for allowing us to share this with the rest of the world.
For discussion, see also: Something PoC doesn't have (yet!) in the forums.