THE comics critic Maggie Thompson will be spending the next few months putting much of her comics collection up for auction online, a collection which includes first issues of Avengers, The Hulk, and a whole host of other startling items. As one of the pre-eminent comics critics out there, you won’t be surprised to learn that her comics collection is exceptional – and in exceptional condition, as well. The auctions are estimated to raise over $1 million in total.
Starting today, the 500-plus comics will be auctioned in waves, with issues like Journey Into Mystery #83 – featuring Thor’s first appearance – amongst these first few titles. In a post made to her blog this week, Thompson talks about her reasons for the auction, and why she started collecting to begin with:
When I was learning to read and such comic-book creators as Walt Kelly and Carl Barks were telling me fresh stories every month, I also learned that what I didn’t buy one month would be gone forever the next. I haunted the newsstand and planned my allowance accordingly, because I wasn’t going to get another chance at those issues. I certainly was never going to find them at the library.
And pop culture (a term years away from its coining then) was fleeting. Daily newspapers were discarded. Movies passed through theaters in a flash. Even more transitory were the weekly visits of such favorites as The Shadow, Suspense, and Jack Benny. Gone. They could be no more than memories.
There are a few interviews with her scattered around the internet, including this one at the Antique Reporter. Proceeds from the auction are intended to go towards paying the capital gains tax and to the custody of her financial advisor – the goal of the auction is, above all else, to share her collection with other comic fans and collectors.
It’s an incredible collection assembled by her, and her husband Don Thompson. Along with everything else, I spotted Daredevil #1, Green Lantern #1, Amazing Spider-Man #50, Detective Comics #359 and so many others. There’s a video showcasing the auction below, and you can find the full collection here.