The Big List of Time Travel Adventures


   Dzienniki gwiazdowe
English title: The Star Diaries (translated from Polish)
by Stanisław Lem
First story: the 7th and 20th voyages, 1957

Lem’s space traveler extraordinaire Ijon Tichy also voyaged through time in his seventh voyage (where he met multiple copies of himself in a plethora of time vortices) and in his twentieth voyage (where a single, annoying future self fasttalks the younger Tichy into undertaking a little engineering to rectify the messier parts of humanity’s history). Both voyages were first collected in the 1957 Tichy collection, Dzienniki gwiazdowe.

 If youd stop a moment and think, youd figure all that out for yourself. Im later than you, so I must remember what I thought—that is, what you thought since I am you only from the future. 

—the Twentieth Voyage

   “The Last Word”
by Damon Knight
First publication: Satellite Science Fiction, Feb 1957

A fallen angel, who himself cannot undo time, pushes mankind to the brink of extinction.

 Cowardice again—that man did not want to argue about the boundaries with his neighbors muscular cousin. Another lucky accident, and there you are. Geometry. 

  Tales of Magic #3
Magic by the Lake
by Edward Eager
First publication: Apr 1957

Three weeks after their adventures in the first book, Katharine, Mark, Jane, and Martha talk to an ill-temperedturtle who explains how the magic of the lake can take them on an adventure to the time of Ali Baba. Oddly enough, at one point the gang must be rescued by another group of time-traveling children (who will be familiar to the readers of the second book).

 “Dont go saying I did it!” said the turtle. “Dont come complaining to me! People who go around making wishes without looking to see what magic beings are listening can just take the consequences!”
“Oh, were not complaining,” said Katharine quickly. “We think its awfully nice of you. Were grateful. Youve been very obliging. Thank you very much.”
“Humph!” said the turtle.
“Magics just about all we needed to make things just about perfect,” said Jane.
“Ha!” said the turtle. “Thats what you think. And a lot you know about it! But of course you couldnt be sensible, could you, and order magic by the pound, for instance, or by the day? Or by threes, the good old-fashioned way? Or even by halves, the way you did before?”

by Isaac Asimov
First publication: Infinity Science Fiction, Jun 1957

Dr. Edward Barron has a theory that time is arranged like a series of particles that can be traveled up or down; his colleague and hesitant collaborator August Pointdexter isn’t so sure about the application of the theory to reality.

 An elevator doesnt involve paradoxes. You cant move from the fifth floor to the fourth and kill your grandfather as a child. 

   “The Assassin”
by Robert Silverberg
First publication: Imaginative Tales, Jul 1957

Walter Bigelow has spent 20 years of his life building the Time Distorter that will allow him to go back to save Abraham Lincoln.

 The day passed. President Lincoln was to attend the Ford Theatre that night, to see a production of a play called “Our American Cousin.” 

   “A Loint of Paw”
by Isaac Asimov
First publication: The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, Aug 1957

Master criminal Montie Stein has found a way around the statute of limitations.

 It introduced law to the fourth dimension. 

   CBS Radio Workshop
produced by William N. Robson and William Froug
First time travel: 15 Sep 1957

Perhaps it was Finney’s success in the 50s that encouraged the experimental CBS Radio Workshop to air their only time-travel fantasy in their penultimate episode, “Time Found Again” from a 1935 Mildrem Cram story. Earlier in the series, they did other science fiction including a musical version of Heinlein’s “The Green Hills of Earth,” Pohl and Kornbluth’s The Space Merchants, Huxley’s Brave New World, two Bradbury character sketches, and more.

 Bart: Do you think it’s possible for a person to go back in time?
George: Well, you know there is a theory that nothing is lost, nothing is destroyed.
Bart: Then you do believe it’s possible?
George: Anything is possible, Bart, to a degree. Science has proved that. It’s conceivable, with concentration and imagination, that a person might, for a moment, escape from the present into the past. 

—from “Time Found Again”

   “A Gun for Grandfather”
by F.M. Busby
First publication: Future Science Fiction, Fall 1957

The para doesn’t quite dox for me, but the story is still enjoyable as Busby’s first publication.

 I’m not kidding you at all,” Barney insisted. “I have produced a workable Time Machine, and I am going to use it to go back and kill my grandfather. 

   “Double Indemnity”
by Robert Sheckley
First publication: Galaxy, Oct 1957

Everett Barhold, sales manager for the Alpro Manufacturing Company (Toys for All the Ages) has plans to make a fortune in the time traveling business, but not in the usual way. He and his wife have hatched a plan to swindle the Inter-Temporal Insurance Company by taking advantage of the rarely used double indemnity clause.

 Everett Barhold didn’t take out a life insurance policy casually. First he read up on the subject, with special attention to Breach of Contract, Willful Deceit, Temporal Fraud, and Payment. 

   “Soldier from the Future”
aka “Soldier”
by Harlan Ellison
First publication: Fantastic Universe, Oct 1957

Qarlo Clobregnny (aka pryt sizfifwunohtootoonyn), psychologically and physically conditioned as a foot soldier from the moment of birth, is transported from the time of Great War VII to a 1950s subway platform where he and his story eventually become a force in an unexpected direction.

A few years later, the story was the basis of an Outer Limits episode.

 No matter how violent, how involved, how pushbutton-ridden Wars became, it always simmered down to the man on foot. It had to, for men fought men still. 

by William Tenn
First publication: Galaxy, Dec 1957

Henry Hancock Groppus seeks sanctuary from the Ambassador from the Next Century after he is condemned to death for proposing and practicing genetic selective breeding to solve the problems of the Uterine Plague.

 “The point being,” said the Secretary of State, “that most social values are conditioned by the time, place and prevailing political climate. Is that what you mean by perspective? 

   “Time Out for Tomorrow”
by Richard Wilson
First publication: Science Fantasy, Dec 1957

Darius Dave, chairman of the Omega Science Fiction Club, brings his great grandson from the year 2017 to address the club. Most of the club members think the time traveler is just a gag, but artist Jennie Rhine has golddigging designs on Darius’s descendant.

 Even as he spoke, there was a shimmering in the air next to him and a whining hum. The shimmering became the outline of a man—a tall man wearing silvery shorts and some sort of metalic hardness over his bronzed skin, with a heavy cloak thrown back from the shoulders. 

No Time Travel.
Move along.
Below the Salt by Thomas Costain, 1957 [no definite time travel ]


13 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 (