Zora Arson

Appeared from Wednesday, November 14, 1934 to Thursday, May 16, 1935

Panel from April 29, 1935

Zora Arson was a gangster, killer and sister to the arch-criminal, Boris Arson. Zora Arson had dark hair and regularly disguised herself as a man. There was a woman in Boris Arson’s original gang that was never named that looked exactly like Zora. That woman was captured by Tracy when he first rounded up Boris Arson’s gang on November 14, 1934, but was not seen again until February, 1935 when Zora Arson was introduced by name.

Zora Arson was dressed as a man posing as her brother’s lawyer, Jamison. Zora visited Boris in prison and told him she was intent on killing Mary Steele who had “squealed” on him. Zora made two shooting attempts and one bombing attempt, but Mary escaped unscathed each time. Finally, Zora broke into Mary and Junior’s hotel room one night and was about to shoot Mary, when Junior awakened and stopped her. They fought in the dark, but Zora got away and reached the freight subway in the basement of the hotel.

Tracy arrived and, with the help of Junior and the hotel manager, chased after Zora, who had entered the freight subway tunnel on an electric truck. Zora realized that Tracy had followed her on foot into the tunnel, so she got off the truck and put it into reverse and sent it racing back toward her pursuers. Tracy quickly put his overcoat on the tracks and the truck derailed and their lives were saved.

Chased to the park, Zora escaped by walking underwater across the park lagoon while breathing through a reed attached to a child’s toy sailboat. Zora then sent a note to Boris in prison, telling him about the color that raw potatoes have when they are dipped in iodine – a blue-black color that looked like metal. Boris carved a gun out of a potato, dyed it with iodine and escaped from prison.

To get him out of the city, Zora posed as a parson and tried to perform a fake wedding of Boris to Sunset, a Pawnee Indian. However, Yellowpony, Sunset’s father, saw through her disguise and after a short scuffle, during which Sunset’s mother, Cottonflower, attacked Zora with a tomahawk, Boris succeeded in getting the upper hand. Boris and Zora herded everyone to the car for their escape to the Ozark Hills of Oklahoma. Yellowpony threw himself from the car at a busy intersection and joined Tracy and Pat in pursuing the fleeing gangsters. Boris and Zora locked the other two Indians in train station lockers to be rid of them.

Zora told Boris she knew “Cutie” Diamond, a killer who had a hideout in the Ozark hills. They met “Cutie” and he welcomed them to his hideout and showed them his cave room that was protected by two wildcats. When Tracy, Pat and Yellowpony arrived at “Cutie’s” hideout, they smoked “Cutie” and Zora out of the cave. Caught in the cross gunfire from Tracy, Pat and Yellowpony as they emerged from the cave, both Zora and “Cutie” were shot and killed.

Reprinted with permission from the author Victor E. Wichert “The Dick Tracy Encyclopedia Oct. 4, 1931 – Dec. 25 1977″

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