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Almost 5,000 valuable items stolen from FSU library comic collection

Published: Sep. 20, 2021 at 2:50 PM EDT
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - Florida State University says its police department is investigating after nearly 5,000 rare items were taken from a special collection at Strozier Library. According to an FSU spokesperson, 4,996 items went missing from the Robert M. Ervin Jr. Collection between March 17, 2020, and Feb. 10, 2021.

The collection consists of comic books and serials about superheroes, science fiction, fantasy and horror, including rare Marvel and DC comics.

“Over 1,200 serial titles are represented, predominantly from the 1950s through the 1970s. Other works include monographs and serials related to comic book collecting, history, and criticism, as well as posters and prints featuring comic book characters and art,” an email from FSU says.

Based on FSUPD’s investigation, the university says the missing items may have appeared on the secondary market as early as March 2020.

“Unfortunately, most missing items are not marked in any way that distinguishes them from other copies of the same magazines,” the university says. “Some may have mailing labels for Tallahassee, Florida addresses.”

FSU Libraries also told the Antiquarian Bookseller market about the missing items from the Ervin collection.

In order to prevent future theft, FSU Libraries says it is conducting an internal audit of security protocols and practices surrounding collection areas.

If you have any information regarding this case, reach out to FSUPD’s lead investigator on the case, Mason Runge, at crunge@fsu.edu or Katie McCormick, the associate dean of FSU Special Collections & Archives, at kmccormick@fsu.edu. You can stay anonymous with your tip by filling out the form at this link.

“We really want to get these items back. We’re disclosing this information now with the hope that it produces some credible leads that can help us recover these valuable materials for research and teaching purposes,” FSU Dean of University Libraries gale Etschmaier says.

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