One of my favorite interviews of my career is with Mayme Clayton. I actually interviewed her when I was in graduate school for a class assignment but later used that audio for a public radio story. Clayton had the second largest collection of black memorabilia in the world. These rare pieces, like a signed book by Phyllis Wheatley and vintage Oscar Micheaux film posters, were not stored in a museum. She kept all of these priceless gems in her South Los Angeles garage. There must have been some history angels protecting her collection because even during the heat and rain her things stayed in good condition. Someone broke into her garage and all they stole was a boom box. Idiots. See what happens when you don't pay attention in school kids?
I went into her treasure chest/garage and was in awe. I actually got to see Phyllis Wheatley's signed book! Wheatley, a former slave, was the first African American poet published. For me, an African-American writer, I'll never forget that moment.
Listen to the interview/obit I reported on Mayme Clayton for NPR back in 2006. You can read the interview as well, but you don't get the same feel as when you listen to the audio.