Auction House Could Set Record With Sale of Rare Baseball Card

T206 Honus Wagner baseball card being offered by Memory Lane Inc.

A rare, 103-year-old Honus Wagner baseball card sold at auction Thursday, April 19 for more than $1.2 million. Now, a Tustin, California-based sports memorabilia auction house is offering another example of collecting’s ‘holy grail’ that’s already setting records. Memory Lane Inc., which specializes in rare sports cards, is offering an authentic example of the famed T206 Honus Wagner card in its newly launched ‘Holy Grail Auction’. Graded “2” or “Good” by Professional Sports Authenticator (PSA), the card is among the better known examples of the undisputed key to the set issued through American Tobacco Company products from 1909-1911.

It has been in the possession of a prominent east coast collector for many years and was recently consigned to the Tustin-based auction company.

The card’s opening bid of $550,000—the highest in sports collecting history—has already been made. With the company’s 19% buyer’s premium, the actual bid stands at a remarkable $654,000 with bidding not scheduled to end until May 5. The current bid has already smashed the record for a Wagner card in this condition. The card that brought $1.2 million on Thursday ranks just one grade higher than the one being sold by Memory Lane.

The legend behind the Wagner card is that the Pittsburgh Pirates’ star shortstop asked for American Tobacco to pull his card from production in the spring of 1909. Some speculate he did it because he abhorred smoking. Others say he didn’t want children to have to buy tobacco to acquire his card while another faction believes it was simply a dispute over compensation for the use of his picture. Whatever the reason, early card collectors quickly recognized its scarcity and the legend has only grown greater over time.

With less than 100, and perhaps as few as 60 examples known to have survived spring cleaning rituals and wartime paper drives, the T206 Wagner card has proven to be a shrewd investment in addition to being a highly prized collectible. In 2006, Memory Lane sold another PSA 2 Wagner for $294,338, less than half of the current bid on the card currently being offered. Just 12 years ago, a “Very Good” condition Wagner sold for what now looks like a bargain basement price of $145,000.

In addition to its supreme rarity, the majority of the surviving Wagner cards have graded “poor” or simply been designated as “authentic” because of numerous severe flaws, even trimming in some cases. The PSA 2 Wagner Memory Lane is offering exhibits some creasing and corner wear, but ranks among the more respectable cards of its kind ever to come to auction.

In addition to the Wagner card, Memory Lane is also offering a T206 Eddie Plank, one of the other three ultra-scarce cards from that series. It’s expected to sell for a six figure sum.

To register or receive a free catalog with hundreds of other auction items from the 19th century to the present day, call (877) 606-LANE (5263) or visit the company’s website

0 comments

Add your comment

Commenting is allowed only for registered users.

Other articlesgo to homepage

Bid Now: Memory Lane’s Spring Auction Live for Bidding

Bid Now: Memory Lane’s Spring Auction Live for Bidding(0)

The phrase “Spring break” may conjure up images of college students, sandy beaches and non-stop parties but this year it means a rare opportunity for collectors to acquire some of the best vintage baseball cards from two important sets.  Memory Lane  features the sale of individual cards from two of the highest quality Bowman baseball sets

Just Collect to Offer 1965 Topps Football Collection Featuring Joe Namath Rookie

Just Collect to Offer 1965 Topps Football Collection Featuring Joe Namath Rookie(0)

Just Collect is proud to share the story of there most recent purchase, a group of about (100) 1965 Topps football cards. The collection included the coveted Joe Namath rookie card, valuable in any condition. This example is in EX condition and will be graded by PSA soon. It will be available in the next

Bid Now: Memory Lane’s Spring Break Auction is Live – Ends May 9th

Bid Now: Memory Lane’s Spring Break Auction is Live – Ends May 9th(0)

The phrase “Spring break” may conjure up images of college students, sandy beaches and non-stop parties but this year it means a rare opportunity for collectors to acquire some of the best vintage baseball cards from two important sets.  Memory Lane  features the sale of individual cards from two of the highest quality Bowman baseball sets

Consign Today: See Memory Lane This Weekend in Long Island New York

Consign Today: See Memory Lane This Weekend in Long Island New York(0)

Consign to Memory Lane Inc’s Auction and I Own It Now Sale.  We will be in Long Island, NY this weekend April 18-19, 2015.   Memory Lane Inc is actively buying and accepting consignments for this upcoming event. We are accepting sports cards and memorabilia, including graded cards, unopened wax, game used jerseys, and much more. Our Consignment

Memory Lane’s Vintage Original Baseball Photo Ebay Sale

Memory Lane’s Vintage Original Baseball Photo Ebay Sale(0)

Memory Lane Inc is proud to offer Vintage Original Baseball photography direct from the historic Underwood & Underwood Archives.  All of our Ebay Photo Auctions are offered at no reserve.  Check out the auction here. 

read more

E-mail Newsletter Sign-Up

Sponsors

Contacts and information

Auction Report is the premier web site for news coverage and more on the best auction companies.

Social networks

Most popular categories

© 2015 Auction Report All rights reserved.