Starting tomorrow, The MEMO blog will carry a three-part series featuring the words from ephemera collector Michael Ragsdale. Ragsdale has been a collector of New York City event-specific paper ephemera and autographs since 1997. He started collecting the items for fun while he worked as a cameraman capturing various events for C-SPAN, Columbia University, the Manhattan Institute, the NewYork-Presbyterian Hospitals of Columbia and Cornell and others.
His collecting took a new direction on the morning of September 11, 2001. Ragsdale began two separate aftermath-related collecting efforts, both important and unique. One of his collections, which totals 4,000 individual pieces and took 14 months to build, was acquired by the 9/11 Memorial Museum for use in exhibitions when the space opens in 2012 at the World Trade Center site. He has retained the second collection - "a seven-year paper history" of 3,000 pieces and 500 autographs. What began as a hobby has become an important contribution in conveying the story of 9/11.
Over the next three days, Ragsdale will share stories about some of the pieces in his collection.
By 9/11 Memorial Staff