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A Guide to the Suzy Covey General Comic Book Collection

Finding aid created by Patrick Daglaris

University of Florida Smathers Libraries - Special and Area Studies Collections

March 2017



Descriptive Summary

Title: Suzy Covey General Comic Book Collection
Dates: 1948-2014
Abstract: A representative sampling of popular comic books (various titles, publishers and genres) from the late 1940s through 2014.
Extent: 93 Linear feet. 95 boxes; 14,677 comic books.
Identification: ufcovey
Language(s): English

Biographical/Historical Note

The Suzy Covey General Comic Book Collection was dedicated in 2008 in memory of Suzy Covey, a respected UF librarian and comic history historian. Her scholarship examined intersections of comics, technology and sound, including internet studies and studies of the Comic Book Markup Language (a specialized XML for encoding the images, text, and sound effects depicted in comics).

The collection directly supports the Comic Studies Program offered by the Department of English at the University of Florida, but its holdings are open to all having an interest in the field. The collection, originally formed from the personal collections of Dr. Donald Ault (Emeritus English professor at the University of Florida) and Penny and Sol Davidson (R. Sol Davidson was awarded the very first PhD in comics from New York University in 1959), is a useful research collection for those interested in the history and development of sequential art formats, particularly in the United States and includes original and reprint comic books, strips, caricatures and related items. The collection holds items from every recognized "Age" of comics as well as every genre, including daily humor strips and political satire as well as superhero, funny animal, and underground comics.


Scope and Content

The "general" comic book collection contains 14,677 comic books from 1948 to 2014. The comic book holdings include a variety of prominent comic book publishers (DC Comics, Marvel Comics, Dark Horse Comics, etc.) and lesser-known and independent publishers (First Comics, Valiant Comics, Rip Off Press, etc.). The collection is organized alphabetically with some flexibility given to accommodate published works in a single volume (i.e. Superman, Superman Annual, and Superman Special of Volume 1 would all be sorted together to depict a complete volume before starting Volume 2 of the same series.) The collection is contained in ninety-five boxes holding approximately 140 comics each. Some independent comic books and comic books depicting popular culture themes (Disney comics, Christmas editions, political comics, television, film, underground, etc.) were relocated to "special subject" holdings in the Popular Culture Comic Collection. Notable appearances in this collection include a contribution as a guest writer by Ray Bradbury in the "Alien Encounters" series, Radio Shack promotional comics, as well as depictions of Richard Nixon, Marilyn Monroe, Bill Clinton, Robert Townsend, the 1984 Summer Olympics, a 1930s era NRA emblem, etc. The finding aid includes the title, volume, publication date, publisher, and cover artist (when available) of each comic and includes advertisements for publisher-related and unrelated items. The finding aid only records the first appearance of an advertisement and excludes any duplicated appearance of a specific advertisement. These advertisements range from toys, organizations, education, cinema, music, television, video games, cereal, candy, public service announcements, etc., and provide an excellent insight into the evolving advertisement strategies of the past sixty years.


Access or Use Restrictions

Access

The collection is open for research.


Related or Separated Material

In addition to the general subject material described and listed in this finding guide, THE SUZY COVEY COMIC BOOK COLLECTION also includes extensive comic book/comic strip-related ephemera collected and donated to the University of Florida, in support of the UF Comics Studies program, by the following individuals:

  • University of Florida Professor Emeritus Donald D. Ault (professor of English and the founder of the University of Florida Comic Studies program) - vintage New York Herald Tribune comic strips, miscellaneous vintage Sunday comic strips, vintage "Blondie" and "The Watcher" comic strips, THE BEST OF WALT DISNEY magazine anthologies, Comics on Microfilm, vintage "Hogan's Alley" comics et cetera.
  • Dr. Sol Davidson (whose New York University doctoral dissertation, Culture and the Comic Strips, earned him the first PhD in comics in 1959) and his wife Penny - "Victorian Imagerie," large feature comic books, vintage New York Sun comic strips, "Harold Teen" comic strips, "Special Purpose" comic books, "Single Series" comic books, assorted fanzines, a collection of "Will Eisner's Preventive Maintenance," wartime-subject (WWII, Korean War, Vietnam War, etc.) comic books, et cetera.
  • Dr. William Logan (University of Florida professor of creative writing) - comic book ephemera, science fiction magazines, graphic novel publications, Far Side paperbacks, political cartoon anthologies, USAGI YOJIMBO comic books, 2000 AD comic books, et cetera.
  • Dr. Robert Kreamer (noted osteopathic physician and comic book collector from Des Moines) - a collection of comic book/comic strip anthologies, topical newspaper comic strip collections, Will Eisner publications, anthologies and related ephemera, et cetera. Donated by his son, Attorney Samuel Kreamer, and the Kreamer Estate.
  • Dr. Jerry Berger (University of Florida College of Medicine/Department of Anesthesiology and collector) - miscellaneous comic book art, convention programs and ephemera, vintage comic books and comic strips, et cetera.
  • John W. Lindell - comic book and cartoon histories and anthologies (1200 titles) donated in his memory, by his wife, Marjorie A. Lindell and his daughter, Ann Lindell.
  • Miscellaneous smaller gift-in-kind gifts donated, through the years, and the original comic book collection from the University of Florida Baldwin Children's Book Collection holdings (including an extensive Disney comic book collection) transferred to the University of Florida Popular Culture Collections in 2010.


Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Suzy Covey General Comic Book Collection, Special and Area Studies Collections, George A. Smathers Libraries, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida.

Acquisition Information

The foundation of the current collection originated with the transfer of comic book holdings from the Baldwin Children's Book Collection to the University of Florida Popular Culture Collections in 2010. The collection continues to grow with large and small donations from various donors, budget purchases and is supported annually by THE SUZY COVEY COMIC BOOK ENDOWMENT FUND.


Selected Subjects and Access Terms

Comic books, strips, etc.
Dark Horse Comics
DC Comics, Inc.
Marvel Comics Group
Superheroes




For further information, please contact: Special Collections Access Services.

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