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Dick Tracy Museum is now closed

Chester Gould’s Dick Tracy Museum in Woodstock, IL officially closed yesterday with a closing ceremony. The museum announced earlier this year that it would be closing its doors due to financial reasons.

Gould, who lived in Woodstock for much of his life, started drawing the Dick Tracy comic in 1931 and continued to do it for 46 years. At its peak, the comic strip was published in 600 newspapers, Johnson said.

The privately funded museum, which opened in 1991, had been struggling financially for a couple of years.

“It’s quite a loss for the community,” Johnson said of the closing. “It’s such a nice concentration of history. It’s 60 years of the art of a genius.”

Some of the artwork and memorabilia will remain at the Old Courthouse Arts Center where the museum was located. Other items will be donated the McHenry County Historical Society and other museums. About 300 pieces will be photographed and made available to the public via an online exhibit in the near future, according to an article in the Northwest Herald.

The Gaylord Herald Times has posted several photos that it took when it toured the museum earlier this spring.

Community Comments

#1 KRANKY (JOE RANK)
June/2/2008
@ 10:44 am

That’s a shame. I was there for the opening. Got to meet a number of Chester Gould’s relatives…most still live near Woodstock. Also met Dick Locher there for the parade, a charming gentleman. He was the official honoree, but he insisted that the cartoonist contingent immediately follow the vehicle he rode in.

The museum was not very big, but had alot of interest for me.

#2 Garey Mckee
June/2/2008
@ 4:22 pm

That really is very sad news. It seems so difficult for historical cartoon art to find a good forum for display and retrospective. It is very telling of the public interest.

#3 Eric Burke
June/2/2008
@ 8:46 pm

Where the Comicon in San Diego is so huge globally, maybe the peeps that run these museums should think about opening a museum in San Diego that would encompass all comic strips, etc., not just one.

I bet they would make enough during that week to almost carry the museum for the year!

#4 KRANKY (JOE RANK)
June/2/2008
@ 9:57 pm

If only that were to be the case, Eric.

I do not want to be overly negative towards the neXt generation, but most of them are so insular and ignorant of comic history. The world did not exist before they were born ( in their minds ). I know, I know…not all; just a preponderance.

Maybe it is just me: I dislike crowds ( but I like personal attention…that ego thing ).

The “Dick Tracy Museum” was a slice of Americana that was genuine. I was “privileged” to hold some of the original Gould drawings and finished panels.
It was ‘magical’, ‘mythical’, Actually seeing the texture of the flow of ink….and corrections. This is something that plebians and commercialists will not understand.
It is golden.

#5 J.G Moore
June/6/2008
@ 5:27 pm

What a shame. Great strip, cool movie:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dick_Tracy_(film)

#6 Casey
July/8/2009
@ 10:24 am

The Dick Tracy Museum is now online: http://www.dicktracymuseum.com/

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