Douglas Ward American Comic Books Collection 1975-1999

Summary
Contents
Names/subjects
Using these materials
Please note that some historical materials may contain harmful content and/or descriptions. Learn how we’re addressing it.
Creator
Ward, Douglas
Size
36.25 linear feet (72 containers)
Call number
RBC 00002

The Douglas Ward American Comic Books Collection consists of 2057 comic book issues from various comic book publishers, including Marvel, DC Comics, Dark Horse, Image, and other publishers, dating from 1975-1999.

Biographical/historical note

The collection was donated by Mr. Douglas Ward, a resident of Wake County and an information technology administrator. Publishers whose works are represented here include major publishing companies which were started in the 1930s and thrive today, ones that were established in the 1980's and 1990s and still enjoy moderate success, ones that are now defunct, and independent presses with a small number of titles.

Scope/content

This collection consists of a selection of 2057 comic book issues published between 1975 and 1999, as well as a set of trading cards and two signed art pieces. The comics are from various comic book publishers, chiefly of the “Big Two,” Marvel and DC Comics, in addition to Dark Horse Comics, Image, Malibu, Teckno Comix, and other publishers. Some duplicates may exist.

The comics are in three different formats: single issues, trade paperbacks, and graphic novels. Single issues are distinguished by their standardized magazine format, and are typically serialized, with some released as one shots. A trade paperback reprints single issues into one collected volume in book format. The term graphic novel is often used interchangeably with a trade paperback, but it specifically applies to a comic published as a single, original work in book format, as opposed to collecting previously released material. The materials in the Ward Collection are chiefly superhero comics, but also present are dramatic works, science fiction and fantasy titles, horror comics, comedic series, literary adaptations, crime books, anthologies, movie and television tie-ins, and counterculture “alternative” comics. The art styles vary from: the “pop” design typical in mainstream comics; abstract works; ones inspired by classic comic strip and cartoons; highly detailed, fantasy-themed art; ones inspired by classic illustrations; and minimalistic line-drawings. Some comics’ covers were designed to be eye-catching and may be holographic, iridescent, embossed, textured, or foil.

Physical description

2057 comic books, a plastic case of trading cards, and two art pieces (70 archival boxes, 1 half-sized legalbox, and 1 artifact box).

Arrangement

This collection has been arranged into eleven series by publishing company, which are ordered by their size; within these, the files are arranged alphabetically by title, by the title’s volume number, and then by the issue numbers chronologically. The series are divided into the publishers Marvel Comics; DC Comics; Dark Horse Comics; Image Comics; Valiant Comics; Harris Comics; Malibu Comics; Tekno Comix; Assorted Publishers, which contains comics by publishers with a smaller number of issues represented; Collaborations, which contains joint projects between different publishers; and Archival Items, which contains materials that are not comics. The series for DC Comics and Assorted Publishers have sub-series within them.

Access to the collection

Collection is open for research; access requires at least 48 hours advance notice.

Use of these materials

The nature of the NC State University Libraries' Special Collections means that copyright or other information about restrictions may be difficult or even impossible to determine despite reasonable efforts. The NC State University Libraries claims only physical ownership of most Special Collections materials.

The materials from our collections are made available for use in research, teaching, and private study, pursuant to U.S. Copyright law. The user must assume full responsibility for any use of the materials, including but not limited to, infringement of copyright and publication rights of reproduced materials. Any materials used for academic research or otherwise should be fully credited with the source.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Douglas Ward American Comic Book Collection, RBC 00002, Special Collections Research Center, NC State University Libraries, Raleigh, NC

Source of acquisition

Gift of Douglas Ward, 2002 December.

Processing information

Collection arranged by Laura Abraham and Kellie Strickland; Collection processed by Laura Abraham 2016 Feb. to 2016 Nov.; Machine-readable finding aid created by Laura Abraham, 2016 Sept. to 2016 Nov.

Please note that some historical materials may contain harmful content and/or descriptions. Learn how we’re addressing it.
Please note that some historical materials may contain harmful content and/or descriptions. Learn how we’re addressing it.

Access to the collection

Collection is open for research; access requires at least 48 hours advance notice.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Douglas Ward American Comic Books Collection, RBC 00002, NC State University Libraries Special Collections Research Center

Use of these materials

The nature of the NC State University Libraries' Special Collections means that copyright or other information about restrictions may be difficult or even impossible to determine despite reasonable efforts. The NC State University Libraries claims only physical ownership of most Special Collections materials.

The materials from our collections are made available for use in research, teaching, and private study, pursuant to U.S. Copyright law. The user must assume full responsibility for any use of the materials, including but not limited to, infringement of copyright and publication rights of reproduced materials. Any materials used for academic research or otherwise should be fully credited with the source.