Forrest J Ackerman, founding editor of Famous Monsters of Filmland magazine, died Thursday night, December 04, 2008, of heart failure at his Los Angeles home. He was 92.
Famous Monsters of Filmland was the first monster magazine on the market and Ackerman amassed a huge collection of science-fiction movie memoribilia. He coined the term "sci-fi" in the 1950's and discovered author Ray Bradbury.
Over the years, he sold nearly all of his collection to survive, keeping only 100 of his favorite pieces.
Every Saturday morning that he was home, Ackerman would open up the house to anyone who wanted to view his treasures. He sold some pieces and gave others away when he moved to a smaller house in 2002, but he continued to let people visit him every Saturday for as long as his health permitted.
"My wife used to say, 'How can you let strangers into our home?' But what's the point of having a collection like this if you can't let people enjoy it?" an exuberant Ackerman told The Associated Press as he conducted a spirited tour of the mansion on his 85th birthday.
His collection once included more than 50,000 books, thousands of science-fiction magazines and such items as Bela Lugosi's cape from the 1931 film "Dracula."
His wife passed away in 1990. He has no surviving family members.