The Outagamie County Historical Society of Appleton, Wisconsin, once held a large collection of Houdini artifacts, drawing national attention to the regional museum.

The museum signed a lease with Sidney H. Radner, an aggressive loaner with expensive demands.

Radner soon forced control over the museum and its staff, moving the institution away from its mission.

Kimberly Louagie and Matthew Carpenter show the complications of dealing with aggressive loaners in this case study.

The society and Radner entered into an agreement that was not only unethical from a museum standpoint but also breached legal obligations to the public trust by giving Radner undue benefits and resulted in tax penalties.

This serves as a lesson for loan agreements and a is harrowing example of why to stay mission-oriented when collecting.