The Big List of Time Travel Adventures

 Written by Charles L. Harness
 from antiquity to 2016

   “Time Trap”
by Charles L. Harness
First publication: Astounding, Aug 1948

The story presents a fixed series of events, which includes a man disappearing at one point in the future and (from his point of view) reappearing at the start of the story to then interact with himself, his own wife, and the evil alien.

It’s nice that there’s no talk of the universe exploding when he meets himself, but even so, the story suffers from a murkiness that is often part of time-travel stories that are otherwise enjoyable. The murkiness stems from two points: (1) That somehow the events are repeating over and over again—but from whose viewpoint? (2) The events are deterministic and must be acted out exactly the same each time. I enjoy clever stories that espouse the viewpoint of the second item (“By His Bootstraps”). But this does not play well with the first item, and (as with many stories), Harness did not address that conflict nor the consequent issue of free will. Still, I enjoyed the story and wish I’d met Harness when I traveled to Penn State University in the spring of 1982.

 But searching down time, Troy-Poole now found only the old combination of Troy and Poole he knew so well. Hundreds, thousands, millions of them, each preceding the other. As far back as he could sense, there was always a Poole hovering over a Troy. Now he would become the next Poole, enmesh the next Troy in the web of time, and go his own way to bloody death. 

[Jul 2011]
   Flight into Yesterday
aka Paradox Men, and also an exerpt, “Paradox Men” in the 1974 collection Space Opera
by Charles L. Harness
First publication: Startling Stories, May 1949

With a scope to rival A.E. Van Vogt, Harness tells the tale of Alar (aka The Thief): a swashbuckling amnesiac with amazing mental powers who’s bent on overthrowing the evil solar system empire while being pursued from the Earth to the Moon to the Sun and beyond by the Imperial Police. Oh yes, there’s also this mutant mind who claims he’s the only survivor of an accidental time-traveling space ship.

 Do I understand that you want me to believe that someone will leave in the T-Twenty-Two tonight, jet backward in time, crash into the Ohio River five years ago and swim ashore as Alar? 

[Oct 2015]
General Robert E. Lee from the Oct 1983 Analog   “Quarks at Appomattox”
by Charles L. Harness
First publication: Analog, Oct 1983

Colonel von Mainz travels back from the 21st century to 1865 Appomattox with weapons that can make the South win the war and thereby keep America divided, allowing Germany to win the wars of the 20th century.

This is one of the stories that I read in my dad’s Analogs at the end of my tricycle trip to Seattle.

 I left the American sector of Berlin this morning, April 8, in the year two thousand five and sixty, almost exactly two hundred years in your future. I am indeed a colonel, but not in the Prussian army. I am a colonel in the Neues Schutz-Staffeln—the NSS—an underground paramilitary organization devoted to reuniting West and East Germany. 

[Jun 2013]
 


3 items are in the time-travel list for these search settings.
Thanks for visiting my time-travel page, and thanks to the many sources that provided stories and more (see the Links and Credits in the menu at the top). —Michael (
main@colorado.edu)