It was a sad sight - more than 700 pieces, the entire collection of the Ticonderoga Cartoon Museum packed and ready to be loaded on a truck for Pittsburgh.
After 12 years, six in Hague and the last six in Ticonderoga's Community Building, the Ticonderoga Cartoon Museum closed for good at the end of August. The collection has been been donated to the Pittsburgh ToonSeum, a museum dedicated to cartooning. It was moved last week.
"I've been collecting cartoons for 60 years," said Stan Burdick, owner and director of the Ti Cartoon Museum. "It's been a passion of mine. I'll miss that, but it's exciting to think of the thousands of people who get to see the collection now."
Valued at more than $100,000, the local collection will become the Burdick Gallery at the ToonSeum, according to Joe Wos, executive director of the Pittsburgh facility. Wos praised Burdick for his commitment to cartooning and promised his collection is in good hands.
"It's like seeing your kids grow up and sending them off to college," Wos said. "Stan will miss his local musuem, but his collection is expanding its audience."
Besides the collection, the Ticonderoga Cartoon Museum has offered special programs, including group cartoon classes, visiting cartoonist guest days, daytime school visits, and "We'll Bring the Museum to You" events when Burdick takes parts of the collection into the community.
Burdick has no plans to retire. He will continue drawing, providing cartoons to the Times of Ti and hopes to offer cartoon classes in the future.
"It's a little sad," Burdick admitted as his collection was being packed for the trip to its new home. "But now I have a reason to visit Pittsburgh. It's exciting."
Fred Herbst is Times of Ti editor. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org