October 2003 (Newstream) -- A reward of up to $1 million is being offered by prominent Baltimore business executive, Stephen A. Geppi, for a near mint condition copy of the rare 1938 comic book that first introduced Superman and launched an icon of American pop culture.

The reward is in conjunction with the First Annual Las Vegas Comic-Con (, October 31 - November 2, at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center where Geppi will exhibit a copy of the fabled "Action Comics #1."

Originally sold for ten-cents each in 1938, even worn copies of Action Comics #1 today are valued at tens of thousands of dollars each. Less than 100 copies are known to exist.

"I'll pay at least $25,000 for an un-restored, complete copy in good condition, and up to $1 million for a genuine, "near mint" condition copy of Action Comics #1," said Geppi, President and CEO of Diamond Comic Distributors, a $300 million a year business that distributes comics, collectibles, toys and games throughout the world. He is also the owner and publisher of Baltimore Magazine and a part owner of the Baltimore Orioles.

The distinctive cover of the 64-page comic book depicts Superman lifting an automobile.

Experts caution there are inexpensive reprints of the 1938 comic book in the market, but these are easy to distinguish because the modern copies were printed on significantly larger pages than the valuable originals.

"The Golden Age of Comics really started with the introduction of Superman. Action Comics #1 has been called the Queen Mother of comic books, giving birth to both a popular superhero and an entire genre of Americana," said Robert Brueggeman, Event Director of the Las Vegas Comic-Con, a three-day public event that will bring together artists, writers and publishers.

"I hope this reward prompts people to check their basements, attics, garages and elsewhere for vintage comic books and memorabilia they want to sell. You never know what grandpa might have stashed away," said Geppi.

"We'll have experts available at the Las Vegas Comic-Con to give free appraisals to everyone who brings in their old comic books for evaluation," said Brueggeman.

Geppi's $1 million reward is for a copy of Action Comics #1 that grades at least 9.4 (near mint condition) on the CGC grading scale.

For additional information about the reward offer, contact Stephen Geppi at (410) 560-7100 x 169. For information about Las Vegas Comic-Con, October 31 - November 2, call (866) 36-COMIC, or go to

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