Richard D. Olson – RIP

Comics historian and R. F. Outcault/Yellow Kid authority Richard D. Olson has passed away.

Richard David (Rich) Olson
October 10, 1944 – April 30, 2023

The report of Richard’s passing was shared on a comics board:

Richard Olson (Yellow Kid) passed away last Sunday close to his home in Mississippi after battling ongoing health issues. His wife Gayle of 54 years was with him that day. As many know Rich was a very early collector of comics in the Southern California area and good friends with back issue retailing pioneer Leonard Brown. In fact he partnered with him in his earliest forays into buying old comics for resale; posting notices in grocery stores in the early 1960’s.

Leonard wanted Rich to join him in opening Collector’s Book store in Hollywood but Rich chose a different career path and pursued a science degree at the University of Redlands in Redlands California.

That path led to Richard being well-respected in the field of psychology From Prabook:

Richard David Olson, American psychology professor. Licensed psychologist, Louisiana. Grantee Department of Health, 1976-1981. Fellow American Psychological Association, American Psychological Society; member Society for Neuroscis., American Statistical Association.

But here Richard is recognized as a comics historian and THE foremost authority on Richard Felton Outcault and The Yellow Kid, editing The R. F. Outcault Reader.

Richard contributed articles to respected journals such as Inks: Cartoon and Comic Art Studies.

The Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum has some of Richard’s collection, and The Billy Ireland’s own Jenny Robb collaborated with Richard on a look at W. O. Wilson’s Madge for Hogan’s Alley magazine.

But he always returned to The Yellow KId … And to R. F. Outcault as Gemstone Publishing presents, from 2023’s The Overstreet Comic Book Price Guide #53, Richard’s final article on the R. F. Outcault character Buster Brown.

Naturally Richard was the go-to guy on the occasion of the Yellow Kid’s centennial.

from The Cincinnati Enquirer

feature image via Jeff Shanks and the Comic Book Collecting Association