Born in St. Mary's County in 1894, Hammett moved to Baltimore when he was 7 years old.
He attended Public School 72 and Polytechnic before becoming what he called "the unsatisfied employee of various railroads, stock brokers, machine manufacturers, canners and the like."
Hammett's true calling was as a writer of such classic detective novels as "The Maltese Falcon" and "The Thin Man."
In his last 20 years of life, Hammett produced little of note, saying he believed he had exhausted the genre.
-- A Reader's Guide to Twentieth Century Writers