When it comes to jump-starting the economy as it pertains to the Sports and Americana collectibles industry, Legendary Auctions understands that success lies in the quality and the rarity of the material. Despite a still-challenging overall economic environment, Legendary Auctions, a premier Sports and Americana auction source, has shown that with the right items and the appropriate sales platform, strong prices realized are not only possible, but probable. “I know I sound like a broken record, but if there is one thing that can get collectors bidding, it’s fresh, high quality pieces,” said Doug Allen, CEO and president of Legendary Auctions. “You offer enough incredible items and collectors will show up. Because we are focused on consigning and offering some of the very latest and the very best the hobby has to offer, our results continue to exceed expectations.”
The Lou Brock Collection
The Legendary Auctions November sale had plenty of the very latest and the very best in the form of several amazing collections. One of the most notable was The Lou Brock Collection. Lou Brock chose Legendary Auctions to handle the sale of his personal collection after learning how well the auction house did for his fellow Cardinal, Bob Gibson. Legendary Auction’s sale of Bob Gibson’s personal items was conducted in July 2009 and produced several record-setting prices.
Like Gibson, Brock was ecstatic with the results from the auction of his collection. In total, the Lou Brock Collection exceeded $280,000. “I am just thrilled that items representing my baseball career were so well received,” said Brock. “It gives me a great deal of satisfaction to know that these historic pieces are in the hands of collectors who will treasure their significance and safeguard their importance for years to come.”
Dick Zitzman, of Sports Classics, Inc. — Brock’s agent who has worked with Legendary Auctions in the past — was equally impressed with the outcome of the sale. “Legendary Auctions has an established track record of doing exactly what they say they will do for my clients and then delivering a great auction event,” said Zitzman. “It is a pleasure to work with a committed, professional team that understands quality service and results.”
The Lou Brock Collection represented almost 80 of the more than 1,700 lots in Legendary Auctions’ November sale. Among the most significant Lou Brock items sold were:
*Lou Brock’s 1967 St. Louis Cardinals World Championship ring that commanded $65,175;
*A spectacular 1979 LeRoy Neiman original painting of Lou Brock sliding sold for $35,550;
*A 1974 Lou Brock St. Louis Cardinals game used home jersey – the jersey he wore to set the single season stolen base record of 105 – went for $14,220;
*A game used base stolen by Lou Brock to break Ty Cobb’s record – #893 sold for $13,035;
*A Curt Flood original painting of Lou Brock sold for $10,073.
The Chicago Cubs
In addition to the collection of a Hall of Fame player being an auction hit, items associated with a popular team also proved to be an event favorite. The Legendary Auctions November sale offered a spectacular collection of early Cubs memorabilia. And while they may be the “lovable losers” to hordes of baseball fans, as far as a collectors are concerned, anything vintage Cubs is almost always a winner. Among the most significant results were:
*A Frank Chance 1911-12 Chicago Cubs game used home jersey that sold for $62,213;
*A Johnny Evers signed handwritten letter – mentioning “The Famous Merkle Play of 1908 when my good friend Merkle forgot to touch 2nd Base” — commanded $35, 550;
*William Howard Taft’s presentation copy of the book “Touching Second” – signed by the 1910 Chicago Cubs Including Tinker, Evers, Chance and Brown (with a “bonus” signature of Honus Wagner) — went for $24,885.
Record-Breaking T208 Cullivan’s Firesides
Yet another collection that grabbed considerable auction attention before the event and during the Legendary Auctions sale was a stunning assembly of T208 Cullivan’s Fireside tobacco insert cards that were sold individually. This collection of T208s with Fireside back designs was among the largest such groups ever offered publicly.
The headliner in the group was a 1911 T208 Cullivan’s Fireside Eddie Plank graded PSA VG 3 — that commanded $62,213 – the most ever paid at auction for a T208 baseball card!
Also noteworthy were:
*A 1911 T208 Cullivan’s Fireside Eddie Collins – PSA VG-EX+ 4.5 that went for $47,400;
*A 1911 T208 Cullivan’s Fireside “Chief” Bender – PSA VG 3 that sold for $11,850;
*A 1911 T208 Cullivan’s Fireside “Home Run” Baker – PSA VG 3 (MK) realized a final price of $8,295.
“It’s really is a privilege to bring collections of this caliber to the hobby,” said Allen. “Moving forward, Legendary Auctions anticipates finalizing more great consignments that include new hobby material from both athletes and private collections in the near future.”
Other Auction Standouts
While items from collections may have stolen the Legendary Auctions spotlight, they were by no means the entire show. Highlights of top-performing items by category are listed, following:
Single Baseball Cards
A 1915 Cracker Jack #30 Ty Cobb – PSA NM-MT 8 commanded $27,255; an 1895 N566 Newsboy Cabinets John Ward – SGC 40 VG 3 sold for $17,775; a 1916 M101-5 Sporting News #151 Babe Ruth blank back rookie card – PSA Authentic sold for $16,500; a 1916 D350-1 Standard Biscuit #151 Babe Ruth – PSA GD 2 went for $11,850; a 1915 Zeenut P.C.L. Fred McMullen (McMullin), with coupon – SGC 20 FR 1.5 – the only card issued of Fred McMullin, one of the infamous “Black Sox” members realized a final price of $11,850; an 1888 Joseph Hall Team Cabinet on grey mount – Kansas City Ball Club went for $11,850; a 1951 Bowman #305 Willie Mays rookie card – PSA NM+ 7.5 sold for $9,480; a 1933 Goudey #106 Napoleon Lajoie – GAI GD 2 sold for $9,480; an 1895 N566 Newsboy Cabinets John Ward, Bat At Side – SGC 30 GD 2 sold for $8,295; a 1903 E107 Breisch Williams Type 1 Rube Waddell – SGC 20 FR 1.5 sold for $7,703; an incredibly rare 1934 R304 Al Demaree die-cut #4 Babe Ruth – SGC 30 GD 2 sold for $5,629; and a 1910 E98 “Set of 30” Mordecai Brown – PSA VG-EX 4 went for $5,036.
Baseball Cards – Partial, Near and Complete Sets
A 1968 Topps complete set (598) – #4 on the PSA Set Registry went for $38,513; a 1958 Topps complete set (494) – #7 on the PSA Set Registry sold for $28,440; a 1922 E121 American Caramel “Series of 120” near set (119/124) – #1 on the PSA Set Registry realized final price of $20,145; a scarce 1923-24 Exhibits near set (56/59) including 10 signed cards realized a final price of $13,035; a 1959 Topps high grade complete set (572) sold for $10,073; a 1948 Leaf partial set (74/98) including short prints and Hall of Famers went for $10,073; a 1941 R336 Playball PSA-graded complete set (72) went for $8,295; a 1934-36 R318 National Chicle Batter-Up near set (189/192) sold for $7,703; a 1952 Topps complete “Low Number” run (1-310) went for $7,703; a 1934-36 R327 National Chicle Diamond Stars complete set (108) realized a final price of $7,110; a 1940 R335 Play Ball complete set (240) sold for $6,518; a 1925 Exhibits near set (111/128) including Lou Gehrig rookie card, plus six signed cards realized a final price of $5,629; a 1938 R323 Goudey Heads-Up complete set (48) went for $5,629; a 1948 Leaf “Short-Print” PSA-graded collection (15 different) including three hall of famers went for $5,629; a 1933 R319 Goudey partial set (176/239) sold for $5,333; a 1971 Kellogg’s PSA GEM MT 10 collection (21 different) sold for $5,333; and a 1951 Bowman complete set (324) sold for $5,036.
Game Worn Baseball Gear
A Joe Gordon 1942 New York Yankees game used road jersey with period Yankees pants/socks – from Gordon’s MVP season — commanded $44,438; a Willie Mays 1967 San Francisco Giants signed game worn home flannel jersey sold for $22,515; a Luke Appling 1947 Chicago White Sox signed game used home jersey went for $8,888; a Newt Kimball 1938 Chicago Cubs signed game used home flannel jersey and pants – 1939 Centennial Patch added – sold for $6,518.
A spectacular 1943 “War Bonds” Hall of Famers and Stars multi signed ball (10 signatures) including Wagner, Speaker and Collins – featuring Ruth and Johnson on the sweet spot – PSA DNA NM-MT+ 8.5 sold for $21,330; a Babe Ruth single signed ball went for $17,775; “A Diamond in the Rough” – Babe Ruth and Bobby Jones 1935 multi signed Ball went for $5,036; and a Babe Ruth signed ball – PSA DNA VG-EX 4 plus family provenance attributing it to a 1920s home run sold for $3,851.
An 1888 Joseph Hall team cabinet on grey mount – Kansas City Ball Club sold for $11,850; a spectacular Johnny Evers original photo by Paul Thompson went for $8,295; a grandiose 1904 Lawrence action panorama of the Chicago Cubs vs. New York at the West Side Park commanded $6,518; two of Chuck Connors’ personal scrapbooks sold for $4,444; an enormous 1910 Chicago Cubs diptych panorama by Falk – more than 5 feet long — went for $2,726; an 1886 “Jim Hart’s Louisville-California Combination” barnstorming tour team composite cabinet went for $2,133; and a 1939-40 Guayama team composite featuring Satchel Paige sold for $2,133.
A 1934-36 R327 National Chicle Diamond Stars near set (105/108) plus wrapper – #6 on the PSA Set Registry — commanded $50,363; an Al Helfer Heisman Memorial Trophy plus photograph and six Awards Programs went for $50,363; a rare 1958 Topps complete set (132 cards) on uncut sheet – possibly one-of-a-kind — sold for $4,444; a 1946 NFL Championship Chicago Bears vs. New York Giants game program and full ticket (2 items) sold for $4,148; a huge Chicago Bears memorabilia collection went for $4,148; a 1997 Upper Deck “Sign of the Times” signed collection (10) went for $2,726; a 1966 Philadelphia high grade complete set (198) realized a final price of $2,726; a 1976 Topps #148 Walter Payton rookie card – SGC 98 GEM 10 sold for $2,252; and an early 1930s autograph book (17 signatures) including Rockne, Coolidge and FDR went for $2,252.
A 1957/58 Topps PSA-graded complete set (80) including PSA NM-MT 8 Bill Russell rookie card commanded $20,145; a Pete Maravich 1979-80 Boston Celtics game worn uniform – worn during the final game of his NBA career went for
$17,775; a 1961/62 Fleer PSA-graded complete set (66) realized a final price of $15,405; a 1961 Kahn’s Wieners complete set (13) – #1 on the PSA Set Registry — sold for $14,220; a 1986/87 Fleer unopened wax box (36 packs) – GAI Mint 9 went for $13,035; a 1960 Kahn’s Wieners complete set (12) – #1 on the PSA Set Registry — went for $11,258; a LeBron James 2003-04 Cleveland Cavaliers rookie season signed game worn road jersey sold for $5,333; and a Sports Illustrated signed magazines collection (289 different) sold for $5,333.
A 1951 Bowman “Jets, Rockets, Spacemen” complete set (108) – #1 on the PSA Set Registry — sold for $28,440; an extremely rare 1880s N408 Marburg Bros. “Typical Ships” near set (45/50) – #1 on the SGC Set Registry — sold for $8,888; a 1950s-1960s sets collection (12) including complete sets (11) and a partial set went for $4,740; an 1895 N566 Type 1 Newsboy Cabinets collection (65) went for $4,444; a 1938 R69 Gum, Inc. “Horrors of War” #167 “Askari Cavalrymen… ” – PSA MINT 9 “1 of 1!” sold for $4,444; a 1956 Topps “Western Round-Up” high grade complete set (80) including PSA MINT 9 examples commanded $4,148; a 1933-34 R136 National Chicle “Sky Birds” complete set (108) went for $3,851; and a scarce 1890s N143 Honest Long Cut “Buffalo Bill Wild West Show” die-cuts complete figure and tab sets, program, lay-out board and original mailing envelope (47 pieces) sold for $3,851.
Historical and Entertainment Memorabilia
The Beatles 1964 signed British Rail menu card obtained during the filming of “A Hard Day’s Night” sold for $7,703; a significant 1959 Lee Harvey Oswald ALS to his mother – content reveals his frame of mind as he leaves U.S. after Marine Corps discharge — sold for $5,925; an Abraham Lincoln 1863 Signed Military Appointment sold for $5,333; an exceptional and complete “Mercury 7” signed photograph (7 signatures) including Gus Grissom realized a final price of $5,036; a Beatles 1963 signed album page realized a final price of $4,740; and a Beatles circa 1962 signed promo card picturing Pete Best on the front but signed by Ringo and the band on the back sold for $4,740.
For More Information
For additional details regarding the results of the Legendary Auctions November sale or to pre-register to bid or consign an item in future sales, call Legendary Auctions at 708-889-9380 or go to www.legendaryauctions.com.
About Legendary Auctions
Legendary Auctions, headquartered in Lansing, IL, is a premier auction house that specializes in bringing the finest Sports and Americana memorabilia to the collecting public. During the past decade, the company’s principals have managed the sale of over $300 million in historical collectibles and overseen the auction of newsworthy items such as the most expensive baseball card sold publicly, the Bob Gibson Collection (which netted more than $500,000), the “Bartman” baseball, Joe DiMaggio’s 56-game hitting streak bat, and Roger Maris’ 1961 61 home run season jersey. Legendary Auctions conducts several sales annually in a combination of phone/internet and live auction events.