AJHA Auction Returns for the Memphis Conference

15 Sep 2022 4:00 PM | Erika Pribanic-Smith (Administrator)

Own Your Own Piece of Journalism History

Gerry Lanosga and David Nord of Indiana University look at the rare 18th & 19th century publications that Nord is donating for the AJHA auction in Memphis.

by Mike Conway, 1st Vice President

What journalism or media historian would not like to have a framed front page of the Dallas Morning News from the John F. Kennedy assassination hanging on their wall? Or how about a Spiro Agnew watch? A World War II ration book? These are just three of dozens of items up for bid in the AJHA auction, which is part of our first in-person annual conference in three years, taking place in Memphis from Sept. 29 to Oct. 1.

This year’s auction has both an online and in-person presence. You can look at the items and start bidding now at our Galabid site.  As of this writing, there are more than 40 items up for bid and more on the way.

You can also see the items in person starting Thursday, Sept. 29 at the Sheraton Memphis Downtown Hotel. The bidding will end just before midnight Friday, Sept. 30. You will need to pay for your items online Saturday morning, and winning bidders will receive their media history items during the AJHA business meeting on Saturday, Oct. 1.

“Overbid and Often.”  You will often find great deals on historic items at the AJHA auction. But keep in mind that the purpose of this auction is to raise money for our Michael S. Sweeney Graduate Student Travel Stipend. If you can afford to bid (donate) higher, please do.  In the old days of the in-person auction, the late Mike Sweeney was a master at guilting us all into spending more money than we expected to help us fund student travel to our conference. Another option is to seek out a graduate student at the conference and see if they have their eye on any auction items and then bid on it for them.

Even though the bidding is online, you must be in Memphis to pick up your auction items. We will not be shipping any auction items. If you can’t be there but really want a specific auction object, you can talk to one of us going to Memphis to see if we’d be willing to get it to you in exchange for a healthy bid/donation.

Of course, we would also like to encourage everyone to donate directly to the Michael S. Sweeney Graduate Student Travel Stipend. You can do that any time. A reminder that this year’s healthy $400 travel stipend was only possible because of Mike and Carolyn Sweeney’s generous decision to list this fund in his obituary earlier this year, bringing in more than $5500. We won’t have that money next year, so the stipend amount will depend on how much money we can raise from the auction and other donations to the Sweeney Stipend.

We will also be honoring all of the graduate students involved in this year’s conference during the AJHA business meeting on Saturday, Oct. 1 at 10:10am in Memphis.

For those of you who have donated items for the auction, don’t forget to bring those items to Memphis. We will have instructions on where you can drop off your items when you register.

The AJHA auction is returning this year because of AJHA President Aimee Edmondson’s decision to put together a special committee to look into ways to encourage and support graduate students who get involved in our organization. Special thanks to Jason Guthrie, Gerry Lanosga, Erin Coyle, Michael Fuhlhage, and Claire Rounkles for their work on this committee over the past year.

If you have any questions about the auction, please get in touch with me at mtconway@indiana.edu.

Caption for mug photo: A New York Times Obama victory front page coffee cup, sold by the newspaper in 2009, is one of the items in the AJHA Auction in Memphis.

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