Alumna Maureen Stanton (pictured) offers an education in American and European history through a treasure hunt of rare items and collectibles in her celebrated nonfiction book, Killer Stuff and Tons of Money: Seeking History and Hidden Gems in Flea-Market America. It was released in June 2011, and since then has received national attention.
“I think the emergence of retail stores has given us convenience and consistency but has disconnected us from that old world interaction of the marketplace. People are craving that connection more than ever and want to know the historical origins and relevance of various items that they are drawn to,” said Stanton.
Stanton received her MFA from Ohio State in 2000. Intermittently, over a period of six years, she shadowed a mid-level antiques dealer for a behind-the-scenes look at America’s modern day peddlers and lay historians working in antiques and flea markets and noticed a sharp increase in the popularity among the public. More and more people are seeking out forgotten relics that were unintentionally banished into the dark corners of attics and basements.
"Flea Markets and antique stores aren’t frequented by a specific type of person. The customers are diverse in every sense of the word, varying in race, ethnicity, gender, age, and nationality. However, their intense passion to seek out a particular item or historical object is what brings them together," said Stanton.
She was invited on National Public Radio’s All Things Considered (Weekend Edition), with Laura Sullivan. She was the featured guest on National Public Radio’s nationally syndicated talk show, On Point with Tom Ashbrook, as well as several other radio/television interviews and appearances.