Armitage was the head librarian at Miskatonic University who retired around 1936 due to failing health. As a young man, he graduated from Miskatonic in 1881 and went on to obtain his doctorate from Princeton University and his Doctor of Letters degree at Johns Hopkins University. He became interested in the occult in 1882 after hearing of a strange meteorite that fell to Earth near Arkham, this event prompting him to read Miskatonic's copy of the Necronomicon. Years later, and with the help of professors Warren Rice and Francis Morgan, Armitage used this work to defeat the Dunwich Horror (being).
In Peter J. Evans' 2013 novel, Armitage assists Dr. Carolyn Fern in her research on the Mi-go and Feeders from Within, before giving the three protagonists shelter at the house of his friend, Professor Albert Wilmarth.
Conflicting accounts are given for Armitage's demise. In one account, he was killed in 1939 by a fire in the library when he tried to save Miskatonic's Rare Book collection. In another account, he died of a heart attack outside the library in 1946 after being frightened by a guard dog. Before his death, Armitage published two books on the occult: Notes toward a Bibliography of World Occultism, Mysticism, and Magic (Miskatonic University Press, 1927) and Devils and Demons in the Miskatonic Valley.
Behind the MythosEdit
Lovecraft noted that while writing "The Dunwich Horror", "[I] found myself identifying with one of the characters (an aged scholar who finally combats the menace) toward the end". (HPL: letter to August Derleth, September 1928; EXP: An H. P. Lovecraft Encyclopedia).
- The Dunwich Horror, by H. P. Lovecraft
- The Terror From the Depths, by Fritz Leiber.
- The Horror in the Gallery, by Lin Carter
- The House of Azathoth, by Peter Cannon
- Feeders from Within, by Peter J. Evans.