MONTGOMERY, Ala. – “To Kill a Mockingbird” author Harper Lee is at odds with a museum in her Alabama hometown that celebrates her literary achievement over use of the words in the title of her Pulitzer Prize-winning novel.
Lee is seeking a trademark for the words when they are used on clothing. The Monroe County Heritage Museum in Monroeville is opposing the application, contending the sale of souvenirs with the words is vital to its continued operation.
Lee’s New York attorney, Robert Clarida, said the 87-year-old author has never received a penny from the museum’s sale of T-shirts and other souvenirs. That merchandise is remaining on sale while the trademark application is pending. Attorneys on both sides said the timeline for legal arguments set by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office means the case could take a year or more. Last week, Lee settled the lawsuit she filed to secure the copyright to her classic novel.
– Associated Press