Press Releases

June, 2014 Baseball Card and Memorabilia Records Set in $8.5 Million Dollar REA Auction!!!
June, 2013 Record-Setting $10 Million Dollar Auction Paced By Sale of 1914 Babe Ruth Rookie Card at $450,300
June, 2012 REA’s $9.56 Million Baseball Card Auction Sets Records!!!
August 4, 2011 REA’s $9.5 Million Baseball Card Auction Sets Countless Records!!!
June 10, 2010 Most Successful Baseball Card Auction in Collecting History Hits Ten Million Dollars at Robert Edward Auctions!
May 26, 2009 Baseball Card Auction Records Smashed At REA!
May 15, 2008 Countless Baseball Card Auction Records Shattered At Robert Edward Auctions
May 15, 2007 Baseball Card and Memorabilia Auction Shatters Industry Records At Robert Edward Auctions!!!
March 20, 2007 Historic Baseball Treasures 1838-1968 Highlight REA's April Auction
October 25, 2006 REA Public Service Announcement


Baseball Card and Memorabilia Records Set in $8.5 Million Dollar REA Auction!!!

Mickey Mantle Jersey Hammered Down at $201,450;
Carlton Fisk Home Run Ball Sells for $142,200;
Countless Baseball Card Auction Records Set At REA!!!

Watchung, New Jersey. Collectors of high-end baseball cards and memorabilia were glued to Robert Edward Auctions as prices soared to astounding levels across the board during the record-setting April 26, 2014 auction. An incredible 147 lots sold for $10,000 or more. Nine lots eclipsed the $100,000 mark. The total sales of $8.52 Million defined this sale as one of the largest and most successful baseball auctions in collecting history.

World Record Prices: A never-before-offered 1874 Boston Red Stockings Cigar poster featuring George Wright sold for $189,600. This set a new world record for a baseball-related advertising poster, and even more significantly, this result also represented a record price for any kind of American advertising poster ever. A 1968 Mickey Mantle jersey, purchased in 1985 as a personal keepsake of his favorite player for the then-princely sum of $5,000 (and, fortunately, kept safely all these years), stunned the owner with its final realized price of $201,450. Carlton Fisk's iconic home run ball from Game 6 of the 1975 World Series drew national media attention and sold for $142,200. An outstanding 1916 Babe Ruth rookie card in EX-MT condition (reserve $25,000) was hammered down at $142,200. A newly-discovered example of 1887 N172 Old Judge tobacco card of Hall of Famer Deacon White, with his portrait on the card misidentified as "McGreachery," perhaps best illustrates the strength of nineteenth-century cards at REA. One of only two examples known, the Old Judge "McGreachery" rarity (res. $10,000) soared to an astounding $130,350. This auction result set a new record for any Old Judge tobacco card ever sold privately or at auction. The list of extraordinary record-setting prices seems almost endless. REA president Robert Lifson comments, "These results speak for themselves: about the quality of the material offered, about the appreciation of the collecting world for how REA presents items and conducts auctions, about the well-deserved trust collectors have in REA, and about the strength of the market."

T206 Ty Cobb with Ty Cobb Back from Historic 1997 Find: One of only thirteen examples known of the legendary T206 Ty Cobb with "Ty Cobb Tobacco" advertising reverse (res. $25,000) was consigned by the original collector who purchased it at Robert Edward Auctions in 1997. In that historic auction seventeen years ago, a then newly-discovered find of five T206 Ty Cobb with Ty Cobb back examples (approximately doubling the known population at the time) were offered at the same time. In 1997 this card sold for $22,224. In Robert Edward Auctions' 2014 Spring Sale, it realized an astounding record $154,050. "All T206 Ty Cobb with Ty Cobb advertising back cards are rare and special, and all have gone up in value considerably since 1997," notes REA president Robert Lifson. "This particular card not only had a special provenance, but there was definitely a consensus that this card was undergraded. It may have technically graded a modest PSA 1, but it was just a very strong card, far better looking than suggested by the grade. It had everything going for it. There was an overwhelming amount of interest."

1909 T204 Ramly Tobacco Card Collection: The finest collection of 1909 T204 Ramly Tobacco cards to ever come to auction included a total of 183 cards presented in 101 lots. "This was an unprecedented Ramly collection," according to REA vintage card expert Dean Faragi, "both in terms of quantity and quality." The collector who assembled the Ramlys did so in the early days of the organized hobby, when condition was just starting to have a significant impact on value. "He constantly upgraded his set. When he found a high grade Ramly, even if he didn't need it, he bought it. His philosophy was 'You can never have too much of a good thing.'" That philosophy certainly paid off. The Ramly collection realized an astounding total of $297,790. The highest graded T204 Walter Johnson (res. $10,000; est. open) in the collection, a remarkable card graded MINT, which was once a part of the collection of legendary hobby pioneer Frank Nagy, all alone sold for $59,250.

More $100,000+ Highlights: A 1909-1911 T206 "White Border" Near-Complete Set that included 518 of the 524 cards in the set (res. $25,000; est. $50,000+) sold for an extremely impressive $100,725. The 1889 Brooklyn Base Ball Club Application for Membership in the National League was one of the most hotly contested lots in the auction. REA memorabilia expert Tom D'Alonzo picked the Brooklyn Application as perhaps the most historically significant item in the auction. "This was a true treasure. It is the single most important document that could possibly exist relating to the Brooklyn/Los Angeles Dodgers. This application literally represents the birth of the Brooklyn National League franchise." Long ago originating directly from the family of former National League president Nicholas Young, it was purchased by the consignor for $27,500 in the mid-1990s and has been the centerpiece of his advanced Brooklyn Dodgers collection for the past two decades. As far as value: Times have changed! "There's no putting a value on an item as important as this. There's no right number. But the final selling price didn't surprise me at all," comments REA's Tom D'Alonzo. In this auction, the first and only time the Brooklyn National League Membership Application has ever been available for public sale, it was hammered down at $165,900. D'Alonzo's summarizing comment on the result: "Really, it's priceless."

Record Prices For Classics: A Babe Ruth-Lou Gehrig dual-signed baseball (graded NM-MT 8 by PSA) was hammered down for $82,950, a record price in this grade for this classic. A Lou Gehrig single-signed ball with remarkable provenance (including a VHS tape, produced in 1998, that features the original owner describing how he obtained it in 1935) sold for an exceptional $32,587. REA president Robert Lifson notes: "With memorabilia, time and time again, we see how well-documented provenance plays a role in delivering strong prices. It's not always possible to have this kind of provenance, but when it's there, it's impossible not to notice how collectors respond." A stunning 1952 Topps #311 Mickey Mantle Rookie Card graded EX-MT was the most hotly contested postwar card in the auction. The SMR value in the assigned grade was $23,500. It was hammered down for $41,475, by far setting a new world record for the grade and rewriting the price guides for one of card collecting's most iconic cards. Vintage card expert Brian Dwyer notes: "The market for the 1952 Topps Mickey Mantle rookie has long been on an upswing. That's a given. But this was a particularly strong and attractive example. Even in the description we mentioned that we felt this might be the best "EX-MT" 1952 Topps Mantle in the Universe." REA president Robert Lifson adds, "We see a continuing trend where collectors are recognizing that sometimes the technical grades don't tell the whole story. This goes both ways. But when we can point out that an important card like this '52 Mantle really is special for the grade and deserves a significant premium, collectors look more closely, usually agree, and bid accordingly. This card deserved to sell for a record price."

1914 Cracker Jack Cobb and T206 Eddie Plank: A 1914 Cracker Jack of Ty Cobb graded NM-MT+ 8.5 (res. $15,000; est. $50,000++) was on the radar of dozens of bidders, especially those that missed out on it when this iconic condition rarity was last sold at REA in 2012. A favorite of collectors and by far the finest example REA has ever seen, the last time this gem sold it realized $88,875. In this auction, it sold for a well-deserved new record $106,650. REA vintage card expert Dean Faragi, who picked this as his favorite card in the auction, comments, "When we first sold this card, I was floored by it. In 2012, no one knew how to even value it. There is no SMR value for a 1914 Cracker Jack in NM-MT+ 8.5 condition. The highest listed price is for a PSA 8. When we offered it again in this auction, I wasn't surprised at all to see it sell for more. It's unlikely we will ever see a 1914 Cracker Jack Ty Cobb to compare to this beauty." An example of legendary T206 rarity Eddie Plank graded EX 5 by PSA sold for $88,875, setting a new record for this card which last sold for $85,236.

The Pulse of The Market: Collectors, dealers, and market watchers look to REA as the key barometer of the health of the market. According to REA president Robert Lifson, "The market was extremely strong across the board. The auction results were staggering and exceeded our highest expectations. Most important, they exceeded our consignors' expectations. The great prices are the result of many factors including, of course, being given the very best material in the world to offer, taking great care in cataloguing all material, having the largest circulation, extensive research and authentication, the well-deserved confidence of buyers, and an emphasis on the integrity of the auction process. Altogether, it's a very powerful combination. The bidders appreciate what we do. And this naturally attracts consignments." By any measure, this was one of the most successful auctions in the history of collecting. "It was also the smoothest running auction in all respects, including collecting the money. As always at Robert Edward Auctions, there were no delays in collecting money and getting it into the hands of consignors. That's another extremely strong area for REA." All consignors were paid in full, 100 cents on the dollar with no adjustments due to nonpaying bidders, and in record time. "That's the standard we strive for and achieve at REA when it comes to paying consignors. Perfection. Consignors really appreciate getting paid quickly and they really appreciate getting paid 100 cents on the dollar."

REA Statistics: The stunning prices on all nineteenth and early twentieth century baseball cards and memorabilia totaled a staggering $8.52 million. The 1866 lots, offered on behalf of 230 different consignors, were won by an incredible 649 different bidders, illustrating the power of the marketing and auction process, and the breadth of bidder interest. Successful bidders included some of the nation's most prestigious museums, universities, and corporate institutional collections, as well as representatives from numerous Major League teams. An incredible 24,231 bids were placed. "All areas of the auction received a tremendous response and very strong prices. Nineteenth-century baseball items were unbelievable, as always, as were all early baseball cards, advertising and display pieces, graded cards, Babe Ruth items, autographs, memorabilia, non-sport cards and artwork." Thousands of bidders from all over the world participated. The average lot realized more than double the high-end estimate. An incredible 99% of the lots sold.

Nineteenth-Century Baseball Card Rarities: One of the most fascinating new discoveries ever offered by REA was an 1869 Forest City Base Ball Club Imperial Cabinet Photograph featuring Hall of Famer Al Spalding as a player (res. $5,000; est. open). Originating from the collection of Cleveland Newssports columnist and pioneer collector Charles W. Mears, the photo was consigned directly from the Mears family and realized an astounding $47,400. A collection of three circa 1870 team cards, each with advertising for Peck & Snyder Sporting Goods, were another exciting find included in the auction. The three cards, which included one featuring the 1869 Cincinnati Reds, famous as the first professional baseball team, were recently discovered in a 19thcentury photo album at an estate sale in Ohio. The three cards were each trimmed, but their great rarity made them extremely desirable to pre-1900 baseball collectors. The three cards together sold for $45,030, providing a once-in-a-lifetime payoff and far exceeding the expectations of the seller. Interestingly, the trio was paced not by the 1869 Cincinnati Reds team card (res. $1,000; est. open), which sold for $10,665, but by the 1868 Brooklyn Atlantics (res. $5,000; est. open) which is far rarer, one of only three or four examples known, which sold for $29,625. An exceedingly rare 1887 Four Base Hits George Van Haltren (res. $5,000; est. $10,000++) realized an extraordinary $47,400, and an 1893 Just So Tobacco card of C. L. Childs graded EX-MT by PSA sold for $32,587, a record auction price for any card from this rare set ever.

Vintage Card Prices STRONG At REA: REA is first and foremost a baseball card auction, so it is not surprising that the big money, as usual, was in the cards: An uncut sheet of 1933 Goudey Gum cards with three Babe Ruths and a Lou Gehrig (res. $25,000; est. open), one of only several examples known, sold for an impressive $98,800. A second 1933 Goudey uncut sheet (res. $5,000; est. $10,000+) featuring the classic green background #181 Babe Ruth card was hammered down at $35,550. The auction featured two extremely rare 1913 Boston Garter advertising cards, Ed Walsh and Frank Chance (reserve of $5,000 each), which sold for $22,515 and $41,475 respectively. A 1933 R319 Goudey #106 Napoleon Lajoie PSA NM 7 (res. $10,000; est. $25,000+) realized an extremely healthy $41,475, representing a new auction record for the grade. A very attractive example of the 1909-1911 T206 White Border Sherry Magie error card rarity (res. $5,000; est. $10,000+) in VG+ condition realized $17,775. A rare 1909 E92 Croft's Candy Ty Cobb card (res. $1,000; est. $2,000+) realized $14,220. A near-complete collection of 1911 M116 Sporting Lifecards presented in fourteen different lots realized a combined $57,654. A stunning 1948 Bowman Stan Musial PSA MINT 9 rookie card (res. $5,000, est. $10,000+) nearly doubled the existing auction record for a MINT example, selling for an extraordinary $32,588. Collectors competed fiercely for a breathtaking 1914 Cracker Jack Ty Cobb SGC EX/NM 80 (res. $2,500, est. $5,000/$10,000+), raising the bidding until it stopped at $26,663, a new auction record and almost exactly double the previous highest-recorded sale for the card in the same grade.

Additional Vintage Card Highlights: The All-Time Finest Ernie Banks PSA Collection was presented individually in separate lots. The 19 cards, spanning Banks' entire Major League career, totaled $104,931, were paced by an astounding $44,438 for the 1954 Topps rookie card of "Mr. Cub" in PSA 9 MINT condition, a record price for the grade. Thirteen PSA MINT 9 Mickey Mantle cards, spanning the years 1953 to 1969, were each offered individually and sold for a collective $111,153. A newly-discovered collection of 156 T206 White Borders (res. $2,000, est. open), still affixed to their original album pages, sold for an impressive $35,550. A near-complete set of 1909-1911 E90-1 American Caramel cards (res. $2,500; est. $5,000+), saved for decades by the consignor (who ironically was not a card collector but fortunately took great care with the cards since acquiring them in his youth), drew very spirited bidding and ended at $22,515. The Joe Jackson rookie card from the same set (res. $2,000; est. open), a beautiful card encapsulated as "Authentic" by PSA, realized a very healthy $21,330. A near-complete master set of 1949 Bowman baseball cards (res. $2,500; est. $5,000+) sold for an impressive $20,145. More recent sets also sold extremely well. An exceptionally crisp complete set of 1963 Topps baseball cards (res. $2,500; est. $5,000++) hammered down at $26,663. The same collection yielded complete sets of 1964 Topps (res. $500; est. $1,000/$2,000+), which sold for $11,850, 1965 Topps (res. $500; est. $1,000/$2,000+), which sold for $16,590, and 1966 Topps (res. $800; est. $1,500/$2,500), which sold for $14,220, all extremely impressive prices for complete, ungraded sets. Uncut sheets of vintage cards were extremely well received among buyers throughout the auction, with numerous record-setting prices achieved. A 132-card sheet from the 1959 Topps baseball series sold for $10,073, approximately fifty times the modest opening bid of $200. A 132-card sheet of 1967 Topps baseball (res. $500; est. $1,000+) hammered down at $7,703. A 110-card sheet from the 1956 Topps baseball series (res. $2,500; est. $5,000++) realized $23,700.

T206 Drum Checklist Addition Discovery: A previously unknown T206 card of Wid Conroy featuring a very rare Drum advertising reverse (res. $500; est. open), which was discovered by REA in an old-time collection, sold for $16,590. "This was a particularly exciting card for us in the auction," notes REA president Robert Lifson, "because when it was given to us, it was presented as just a $75 or $100 T206 card of a common player in VG-EX condition. It was part of a near-set assembled decades ago, long before collecting rare T206 backs became popular. We always check the backs for rarities and this gem just happened to be there." The discovery of any T206 Drum back is noteworthy, but this was a particularly special find as this front-back T206 combination had not been previously confirmed. It was a new checklist addition. "The consignor didn't understand the significance when we told them. But they understand now!"

Unopened Material: Vintage unopened packs and boxes is a specialty at REA and as always delivered strong prices across the board. A 1963 Topps football wax box with twenty-four unopened packs (res. $2,500; est. $5,000/$10,000) sold for an astounding $32,587. A 1959 Topps football cello box (res. $2,500; est. $5,000/$10,000) set a new auction record, hammering down at $21,330. A 1971 Topps football second-series wax box (res. $2,500; est. $5,000) far exceeded expectations and when the bubble-gum dust finally settled, closed at a remarkable $17,775. A rarely-seen 1959 Fleer Ted Williams unopened wax box with 24 packs (res. $2,500; est. $5,000/$10,000) sold for $17,775. The only known unopened wax pack of 1962 Topps "Mars Attacks" trading cards (res. $1,000; est. open), one of the signature pieces from the Fred Walstrom "Mars Attacks" Collection, sold for $11,850. Tobacco collectors were equally as enthusiastic about an extraordinary unopened pack of 1911 Piedmont Cigarettes (res. $500; est. open). This pack – the first REA had even seen which could possibly contain a T206 card – was riveting to T206 and pack collectors alike, who competed until it hammered down at $8,887. A single 1952 Bowman baseball wax pack (res. $800; est. $1,500/$2,500) realized an amazing $5,628. Not a bad return for a nickel! A newly-discovered 1973 Topps football cello box (res. $500; est. $1,000+) was also hotly contested and realized $7,110. Five additional early 1970s football wax and cello boxes from the same collection were enormously appealing to collectors and sold for a combined $16,116. Unopened 1975 Topps Mini cello boxes continue to be on the rise, and the crisp box offered in this auction (res. $500; est. $1,000/$2,000) realized $3,258.

Additional Auction Highlights:

Autographs: REA's spring auction featured one of the finest selections of signed baseballs in recent memory with many significant rarities. A 1934 Tour of Japan team-signed baseball with Ruth, Gehrig, Foxx, and Berg (res. $2,500; est. $5,000+) sold for $21,330. A 1949 Mel Ott & Carl Hubbell Dual-Signed Baseball graded NM+ 7.5 by PSA/DNA (res. $1,000; est. open), of special note to "500 Home Run Club" collectors as the ball could be displayed as a Mel Ott "single" (true Mel Ott single signed balls are particularly rare), sold for an impressive $13,035. An incredible multi-signed baseball, signed by sixteen Hall of Famers, including Ruth, Cobb, Wagner, and Johnson, hammered down at $29,625, more than ten times the modest opening bid of $2,500 (representing the seller's original cost some twenty years ago). A beautiful single-signed Jimmie Foxx baseball (res. $1,000; est. open), graded EX-MT 6 by PSA/DNA, sold for $17,775. A fascinating collection of autographed baseballs, consigned by the family of the original owner, who attended many significant gamesand then had players sign game-used baseballs,was presented in twenty-three different lots and sold for a collective $77,795, paced by an incredible 1937 All-Star Game baseball (res. $1,000; est. open), which sold for $10,072, and astunning single-signed Ty Cobb baseball (res. $500; est. $1,000/$2,000), which realized $9,480. Canceled checks have always been highly prized among autograph collectors due to the inherent authenticity they provide for the signatures. This auction featured a particularly extraordinary Christy Mathewson check (res. $2,500; est. $10,000+) that was all the more special because it was accompanied by a letter from Mrs. Christy Mathewson, who personally sent the check as a gift to the consignor's husband in 1955. This special provenance further distinguished it as one of the best, if not the finest, and most interesting Mathewson check in existence, and collectors took special note. The Mathewson check sold for an astounding $21,330, setting a new record for any Mathewson check to ever appear at auction.

Player Contracts: Player contracts have long been a specialty at REA. Collectors again showed their tremendous interest in this popular area of collecting, responding with record-setting prices. An extraordinary 1914 Ed Walsh Chicago White Sox Contract (res. $2,000; est. open) with a letter of provenance directly from the Veeck family sold for a remarkable $50,362. A 1930 Lefty Grove Philadelphia Athletics Contract (res. $2,000; est. open) realized $47,400. Roy Campanella's final contract with the Los Angeles Dodgers dating from 1958, signed just weeks before his career ending car accident, was hammered down at $32,587. Signed contracts for ten Hall of Famers, each presented individually, realized a combined $187,170.

Game-Used Jerseys and Bats: Collectors are often driven towards memorabilia issued to specific players and REA's selection of game-used jerseys and pro-model bats was especially well-received by bidders. A 1924 jersey of Chicago Cubs pitcher Vic Aldridge (res. $2,500; est. $5,000+) was offered that was recently discovered, in of all places, in a house on Catalina Island, off the coast of California. While that might seem like a most unlikely place to find a 1920s Cubs jersey, research reveals that the island was owned by William Wrigley Jr., owner of the Cubs, and for years he made the island the team's spring-training headquarters to help promote tourism. We don't know if this really helped tourism, but it helped the gentleman who found this jersey. It sold for $10,072. An outstanding 1919-1922 "Shoeless Joe" Jackson "Black Betsy" Pro-Model Bat graded GU 8 by PSA/DNA and A10 by MEARS, which sold for $48,809 when previously offered at auction elsewhere in 2004, was hammered down at $65,175. An extraordinary 1958-1960 Mickey Mantle signed bat that was obtained in 1958 as the top raffle prize at a father-and-son school dinner sold for a lot more than anyone imagined when it was given away as a prize over 50 years ago. In 2014, this prize sold for $22,515. A signed Roberto Clemente bat (res. $2,500) that was presented to the consignor as a personal gift by the Pirates star in the stands during the middle of a game, sold for $10,072. Jackie Robinson was another magic name represented in the auction. His game-used jerseys sell for hundreds of thousands of dollars when offered, which is rare. This auction did not have a Jackie Robinson jersey, but did, however, feature a pair of Jackie Robinson Brooklyn Dodgers game-used pants! Dating from his final season of 1956, the pants (res. $5,000) were a more affordable alternative to a jersey. But "affordable" is relative when talking about Jackie Robinson. Amid feverish bidding, they still set the buyer back $26,625.

More Memorabilia Highlights: An extraordinary 1915 Boston Red Sox World Champions Panoramic Photo with Babe Ruth was described as perhaps the most impressive panorama ever offered by Robert Edward Auctions. Collectors obviously agreed. With a reserve of $10,000, it was finally hammered down at $50,362, a record for any panorama photo ever sold at REA. Bob Shawkey's 1913 Philadelphia Athletics World Championship Pocket Watch (res. $2,500; est. open) realized $18,960. Watches such as these were very popular for teams to award to players in the days before World Series rings became the norm. From more modern times, the auction featured two exceptional World Championship rings. Billy Herman's 1955 Brooklyn Dodgers World Series Ring (res. $5,000; est. open) awarded to him as a coach was a special highlight. This particular ring was once part of the famed Barry Halper Collection, originating directly from Billy Herman's wife and accompanied by letters of authenticity from both Barry Halper and Mrs. Herman. After spirited bidding, the ring hammered down at $38,512. A 1999 New York Yankees World Series ring, issued to a high-ranking minor-league staff employee is naturally valuable as a Yankees World Series ring but also due to the its substantial materials (48.29 Grams, 119 Diamonds). With a reserve of $5,000, this modern classic sold for an impressive $29,625. A ticket in the shape of a light bulb from Johnny Vander Meer's second no-hitter, the first night game in Dodgers history, carried a reserve of $500 and sold for $2,666. A rare Official Negro American League Baseball in Original Box (res. $500; est. open) sold for a record $5,628. It took more than peanuts to land the 1913 Barnum & Bailey "Famous Elephant Base-Ball Team" Circus Poster (res. $1,000; est. $2,000+). This classic poster, featuring elephants playing the National Game, has long been a favorite among both baseball and circus collectors, and realized a record $8,295. A ticket and program to the 1923 Opening Game at Yankee Stadium, saved by the consignor's father (who actually attended the game!), carried a reserve of $2,500. The souvenirs to the christening of "The House That Ruth Built" realized a staggering $26,662. Babe Ruth was sold to the Yankees for only $125,000!

1934-1956 "Three Stooges" Poster Collection: The first installment of the finest and most advanced collection of original "Three Stooges" movie posters and lobby cards to ever come to auction was a huge hit with collectors. All "Three Stooges" movie posters and lobby cards are extremely rare and have long been recognized as "blue chips" by advanced collectors in the movie poster world as well as among "Three Stooges" collectors. The offering of just a few lobby cards and posters is a rare collecting event. This auction, the first of four installments representing the entire collection, featured 37 lots selling for a total of $144,807. The six one-sheet posters alone sold for $83,246, paced by an amazing record $56,287 for the extremely desirable and early 1935 Uncivil Warriors poster. Forty-one "Three Stooges" lobby cards sold for a total of $61,560, highlighted by $9,480 for a 1934 Men In Black lobby card (res. $2,000). Interesting note: this lobby card had the amazing provenance of having originated years ago directly from Moe Howard's daughter. Collectors are anxiously awaiting the future installments of this unprecedented once-in-a-lifetime collection. There were only 174 short films in total made by The Three Stooges between 1934 and 1956. This collection has advertising one-sheets and lobby cards representing 115 of them, including the one-sheet for The Three Stooges' very first short, 1934's The Woman Hater's Club, which will hit the auction block in the near future.

Non-Sports Cards (1886-1976): While REA is primarily known for baseball cards and memorabilia, non-sport cards and card artwork from all eras have always been an important area of focus. In this auction, non-sport collectors were treated to the only known example of one of non-sport's legendary rarities, the R72 Schutter-Johnson "Strong Man" (res. $1,000; est. open). The card, which had been kept in a private collection for more than three decades, sold for an appropriately "strong" $22,515. A rarely-seen complete set of 1950s Exhibits "Slick Chicks" (res. $200; est. open) sold for a staggering $10,665. The second-highest graded "Mars Attacks" set listed on the PSA Set Registry sold for an incredible $68,433 for all fifty-five cards. Several otherrare "Mars Attacks" items from the same collection, includingdisplay boxes, wrappers, and production materialtotaled $32,469. Original card artwork was also incredibly well-received by collectors, and numerous auction records were set in the process. A 1950 Bowman "Wild Man" artwork, purchased at another auction recently for $1,200, sold for an eye-popping $4,740. A pair of 1938 Gum, Inc. "Horrors of War" artworks purchased in the same auction for a combined $1,285, realized a superb $4,147. Six original "Mars Attacks" artworks, each offered individually, tallied a combined $46,511. A collection of nineteen 1950 Topps "Freedom's War" original artworks (res. $2,000, est. open) realized $9,480. Ten different 1962 Topps "Civil War News" original artworks, each offered individually, sold for a collective $22,929, while ten different 1965 Topps "Battle" original artworks offered as their own lots realized a combined $15,997. Perhaps most amazing, forty different ultra high-grade 1959 Fleer "Three Stooges" cards sold for an astonishing combined total of $97,110.

Many other auction records were shattered for pre-1948 baseball cards, nineteenth-century baseball cards and memorabilia, non-sport cards, and Americana. Further information and complete auction results are available online at www.RobertEdwardAuctions.com

Copies of the 694-page full-color premium catalog are also still available free of charge. Go to www.RobertEdwardAuctions.com, click "Free Catalog," and fill in your name and address. Robert Edward Auctions is currently assembling its next sale. For further information contact: Robert Edward Auctions, PO Box 7256, Watchung, NJ or call (908)-226-9900.

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Robert Edward Auctions, LLC is one of the world's leading specialty auction houses, devoted exclusively to the sale of rare baseball cards, memorabilia, and Americana.





REA: Record-Setting $10 Million Dollar Auction Paced By Sale of 1914 Babe Ruth Rookie Card at $450,300


T206 Wagner hammered down at $402,900; Ruth-Gehrig Ball Sells for $343,650; Countless Baseball Card Auction Records Set In Most Successful Auction In Collecting History At REA!!!

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Watchung, New Jersey.  The high-end baseball card and memorabilia market was on fire at Robert Edward’s record-setting May 18, 2013 auction. An incredible 172 lots sold for $10,000 or more. The total sales of $10,177,000 made this REA’s largest and most successful sale ever. One of only ten known examples of the ultra-rare 1914 Baltimore News Babe Ruth rookie card sold for an astounding record price of $450,300. This was nearly triple the previous auction record for this card, a 2009 REA sale at $152,750. An example of the famous T206 Honus Wagner in poor condition sold for $402,900, setting a new world record price at auction for the most famous baseball card in the world in this grade. A Sandy Koufax jersey dating from 1963, purchased by the consignor for $30,000 in the 1990s, set a new world record for any Koufax jersey ever sold at auction, realizing $201,450. The highest grade Babe Ruth-Lou Gehrig dual-signed baseball (graded 8.5 by PSA), which last sold in 2005 for $98,000 (which since 2005 has been the record price for any Ruth-Gehrig autographed ball ever), was hammered down for an extraordinary $343,650, more than tripling the previous auction record for this classic. A Lou Gehrig single-signed ball with exceptional provenance sold for an extraordinary record $142,200, more than doubling the previous world record price at auction for a Lou Gehrig single-signed ball.  An extremely high-grade 1952 Topps #311 Mickey Mantle Rookie Card was hammered down for a record-setting $272,550, rewriting the price guides for one of card collecting’s most iconic cards. A 1910 T210 Old Mill Joe Jackson SGC 30 sold for $118,500. The only known Uncut Boston Garter Advertising Panel realized $177,750. The list of extraordinary record-setting prices seems almost endless. REA president Robert Lifson comments, “These results speak for themselves: about the quality of the material offered, about the appreciation of the collecting world for how REA presents items and conducts auctions, about the well-deserved trust collectors have in REA, and about the strength of the market”.

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Collectors, dealers, and market watchers look to REA’s annual event as the key barometer of the health of the market and the most important auction event of the year. According to REA president Robert Lifson, “The market was extremely strong across the board. The auction results were staggering and exceeded our highest expectations. Most important, they exceeded our consignors’ expectations. The great prices are the result of many factors including, of course, being given the very best material in the world to offer, taking great care in cataloguing all material, having the largest circulation, extensive research and authentication, the well-deserved confidence of buyers, and an emphasis on the integrity of the auction process. All together, it’s a very powerful combination. The bidders appreciate what we do. And this naturally attracts consignments.” By any measure, this was one of the most successful auctions in the history of collecting. “It was also the smoothest running auction in all respects, including collecting the money. As always at Robert Edward Auctions, there were no delays in collecting money and getting it into the hands of consignors. That’s another extremely strong area for REA.” All consignors were paid in full, 100 cents on the dollar with no adjustments due to nonpaying bidders, and in record time. “That’s the standard we strive for and achieve at REA when it comes to paying consignors. Perfection. Consignors really appreciate getting paid quickly and they really appreciate getting paid 100 cents on the dollar.”151401.jpg

REA Statistics: The stunning prices on all nineteenth and early twentieth century baseball cards and memorabilia totaled a staggering $10.177 million - a new record for REA and the highest-grossing single-day sports auction of all-time. The 1826 lots, offered on behalf of 333 different consignors, were won by an incredible 692 different bidders, illustrating the power of the marketing and auction process, and the breadth of bidder interest. Successful bidders included some of the nation’s most prestigious museums, universities, and corporate institutional collections, as well as representatives from numerous Major League teams. An incredible 25,426 bids were placed. “All areas of the auction received a tremendous response and very strong prices. Nineteenth-century baseball items were unbelievable, as always, as were all early baseball cards, advertising and display pieces, graded cards, Babe Ruth items, autographs, memorabilia, non-sport cards and artwork.” Thousands of bidders from all over the world participated. The average lot realized more than double the high-end estimate. An incredible 99.78% of the lots sold.

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Babe Ruth: The Sultan of Swat once again proved that he’s the biggest name in baseball with numerous Babe Ruth items selling for world record prices throughout the auction. In addition to the record-setting prices for the 1914 Baltimore News Babe Ruth Rookie Card ($450,300) and the extraordinary Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig dual-signed baseball ($343,650), a 1916 M101-4 Ware’s Basement Sporting Goods Babe Ruth Rookie Card graded PSA 3 drew tremendous interest from collectors both because it was a great looking card and because of its rare advertising back. With a reserve of $10,000 and an estimate of $20,000+, it was hammered down at $130,350, far exceeding all expectations and by far establishing a new record for the card in this grade. “The price may seem shockingly high for the grade, and it is, but the fact is this card looked a lot better than suggested by the card’s technical grade,” notes REA vintage card expert Dean Faragi. “All of the hobby’s most advanced collectors were drawn to this Ruth rookie, all thinking on their own that it deserved a big premium. That says something right there. This was a case of the technical grade not telling the whole story and this fact played a big role in the impressive price.”  Another early Babe Ruth card, the classic 1915 Boston Red Sox Real-Photo Team Postcard (reserve $5,000, estimate $10,000+), was consigned by a longtime postcard collector who had purchased it decades ago for the then princely sum of five dollars. He was shocked by the $26,662 auction result, a record auction price not just for this postcard, but also for any baseball postcard sold at auction ever! All Babe Ruth items turned in stellar results.  An exceptional 1946 single-signed baseball realized $21,330 against a pre-auction estimate of $5,000+. A 1929 R316 Kashin Publications Babe Ruth boldly signed by Ruth (reserve $2,000, estimate $5,000+) pulled in $16,590, doubling the sale price of the last signed R316 Ruth offered as lot 994 in REA’s May 2010 auction. A 1917 E135 Collins-McCarthy #147 Babe Ruth PSA 4.5, purchased at public auction just within the past year at another auction for $50,788, was immediately consigned to REA and sold for a record-setting $65,175. A rarely seen 1921 Frederick Foto Babe Ruth graded Vg+, which highlighted a newly-discovered West Coast collection of primarily PCL material,  realized an incredible $44,437-more than doubling the previous highest public auction price for this card in any grade.

T206 Honus Wagner: The auction featured one of the most interesting T206 Honus Wagner cards in existence: “The All Star Café Wagner”. This card’s rich history reads like a script straight out of a Hollywood movie: The card was once owned by actor Charlie Sheen. In the 1990s he loaned it for display to the All Star Café in New York City, where it was stolen by employees who replaced it in the display with a color photocopy. When the ruse was finally discovered, the FBI was called in, solved the case, and recovered the stolen card. “While the condition was technically very modest, most T206 Wagners are in the same low grade, and this card stacks up very well against most or all of the other examples graded similarly.” Bidders responded very favorably to this famous card as it set a new auction record for any T206 Honus Wagner in this condition. It was hammered down at $402,900 with eighteen different serious bidders competing beyond the $100,000 opening minimum bid. “This is a particularly great Wagner. The card not only looks great, it has a special and unique story,” noted REA President Robert Lifson.

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1933 Goudey PSA-Graded Complete Set: REA offered the number six ranked 1933 Goudey set in over 100 different lots during the spring auction. Almost every card in the set was graded PSA 8 or PSA 9. The set had a total SMR value of nearly $400,000. REA’s Dean Faragi notes, “Feedback suggested that the SMR was high on these and expectations were for the set to sell at a slight discount.” That’s not what happened. When the dust settled, the set sold for an astounding $529,932. The #1 Benny Bengough PSA 8 sold for $26,662 (reserve $2,500, SMR value $19,500). The #29 Jimmy Foxx PSA 8 sold for $16,590 (reserve $2,500, SMR value $10,000). Star players and Hall of Famers weren’t the only ones to realize tremendous prices. A number of rare commons sold for many multiples of SMR, led by #4 Heinie Schuble PSA 8 which sold for $8,870 (reserve $400, SMR value $1,175). Across the board, the results demonstrated high-grade PSA cards are extremely hot and that competition among high-grade PSA set-builders is as fierce as ever.

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1916 Babe Ruth Rookie:  The 1916 M101-4/5 Babe Ruth rookie card proved that recent sales are not an aberration and that it can now be counted on to sell for big money in any grade. “This card has a tremendous demand. It has taken its place as one of the great icons of baseball card collecting. Anyone who has followed the value of this card can’t help but see that it has exploded in value over the past few years,” notes REA vintage card expert Dean Faragi. “It’s always been a great card. It’s just being appreciated more now.” In this auction, an SGC POOR 10 Famous & Barr version (reserve $5,000, estimate $10,000+) sold for $35,550 while a PSA VG-EX 4 blank back (reserve $10,000, estimate $20,000+) sold for $53,325. Both sales are in addition to the record $130,350 sale price of the PSA 3 Ware’s Basement Sporting Goods version also featured in this sale.

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Nineteenth-Century Baseball Card Rarities: One of the most fascinating new discoveries ever offered by REA was an 1863 Grand Match At Hoboken Benefit Card of Harry and Sam Wright, consigned by a longtime advanced early American photography collector who is not a baseball card collector, but who just happened to have this gem. When informed of its substantial value he could not justify keeping it. This was a particularly exciting find for baseball card collectors and historians alike because the image of Harry and Sam Wight on this card had never before been seen or documented in the modern collecting world. The card was offered with a starting bid of $10,000 and realized a final selling price of $32,587. An exceptional 1869 Cincinnati Red Stockings Carte-de-Visite picturing players in cameo photos was hammered down at $38,512. A trio of 1888 N173 Goodwin Old Judge Cabinets featuring Mickey Welch, which were recently discovered by REA’s consignor in one of his old family photo albums (he thinks he may be related which would explain why his family saved these three cards of the nineteenth-century baseball star with the family photo archives), sold for an extraordinary total of $43,845, including $23,700 for the highest graded example in Near Mint condition.  An exceedingly rare 1887 Four Base Hits Mike Dorgan realized $29,625. Three 1887 N693 Kalamazoo Bats Team Cards, depicting the Baltimore, Detroit, and Philadelphia teams, sold for $43,845 collectively, including a particularly impressive $21,330 for the rare Baltimore example. A stunning high-grade 1888 E223 G & B Chewing Gum Timothy Keefe Portrait PSA NM-MT 8 (res. $5,000) sold for $23,700. A 1887 N690 Kalamazoo Bats Harry Wright (reserve $5,000) sold for $22,515. A pair of 1887 N690 Kalamazoo Bat New York Mets players (reserve $5,000 each) sold for $46,215. It pays to check the attics: An 1894 Baltimore Orioles Team Cabinet Card (reserve $1,000), recently discovered by a family in the attic of their Baltimore home, sold for an extraordinary $11,850. A collection of 283 1887-1889 N172 Old Judge Cards in various conditions and broken down into several smaller lots realized an amazing $80,994.

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Vintage Card Prices STRONG At REA: REA is first and foremost a baseball card auction, so it is not surprising that the big money, as usual, was in the cards: One of the finest examples of the 1952 Topps #311 Mickey Mantle Rookie Card ever offered was particularly well-received by bidders. The card, graded PSA NM-MT+ 8.5, ended the night with a final bid of $272,550, leaving the SMR value of $185,000 in the dust and setting a new bar for future sales of this “blue chip” card in the highest grades. A 1910 T210 Old Mill Joe Jackson, graded SGC GOOD 30 sold for $118,500 (reserve $25,000). The only known Uncut Boston Garter Advertising Panel sold for $177,750. One of card collecting’s legendary rarities, the 1933 Goudey #106 Napoleon Lajoie PSA NM-MT 8 (SMR value $55,000), sold for an extremely impressive $77,025, a new world record price for the grade. Extremely strong results such as this were seen across the board among 1930s gum cards at REA. A 1933 Goudey #53 Babe Ruth PSA NM-MT 8 (SMR value $43,650) soared to $59,250, also a new auction record price. Also included in the auction were the other three 1933 Goudey Babe Ruth cards, each graded PSA NM-MT 8, which sold for a total of $82,950 (combined SMR value of $65,750). The auction featured five impossibly rare 1912 T215 Pirate Cigarettes cards, including Hall of Famer Frank Chance. Until this time, REA had only ever offered one sample card from this elusive series. Bidders jumped at the opportunity to purchase one of these extreme rarities, driving the final selling price to a collective $59,842 (combined reserve $5,000, estimate open). A 1949 Bowman #84 Roy Campanella Rookie Card PSA MINT 9 (SMR value $5,000) sold for $9,480. A 1951 Bowman #253 Mickey Mantle Rookie PSA EX-MT+ 6.5 (reserve $2,000, estimate $4,000+) was saved from the consignor’s childhood collection. His cost: one penny.  Price realized in the REA auction: $11,257!

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1909-1911 T206 Card Highlights: Proving that T206s are never going out of style, collectors snapped up thousands of T206s in this auction, including many at record prices. A 1909-1911 T206 White Border Near-Complete PSA-Graded Set (518 of 524) realized $118,500. A total of 45 common cards in exceptionally high-grade (all PSA NM-MT 8) were offered individually and realized a staggering $115,900 in total. A 1909-1911 T206 Eddie Plank PSA VG-EX 4 realized $88,875. This very card had been purchased by the consignor more than a decade ago for what was then a very princely sum of $24,611. “This is another case of the strong market bringing out great cards that have been hidden away for years. It doesn’t happen often enough, but when it does, the market definitely responds with enthusiasm,” notes REA. Another T206 Plank in even higher grade (SGC EX 60) was hotly contested. With a reserve of $25,000, this gem was hammered down at $106,650. “This was one of the best Planks in existence,” notes REA president Robert Lifson. “It may have sold for a record price but I’d be surprised if someday we don’t look back and think this card was a bargain.” Collectors battled it out for several “errors” in which the card had blank backs or misprinted fronts. Five cards, offered between two lots, sold for $20,145, thrilling the consignor and drawing new attention to the tremendous demand for these cards. An impressive 1909-1911 T206 White Border Partial Set (426 of 524) Including 339 Sovereign Backs, consigned by the family of the original owner, realized $35,550. A 1909-1911 T206 Near-Complete SGC-Graded Set (520/524) sold for $71,110. A rare Uzit Back Ty Cobb in PSA GOOD 2 condition sold for $17,775. A 1909-1911 T206 Christy Mathewson Portrait PSA NM-MT 8 (with a reserve of $5,000 and an SMR value $20,000) soared to $32,587. The rare combination of strong condition, unusual advertising back, and popular Hall of Fame player can create tremendous premium values among T206 collectors. Case in point: A 1909-1911 T206 Old Mill Joe Tinker Portrait PSA EX-MT 6 (reserve $300, SMR value $750) sold for an astounding $13,035. Three T206 Ty Cobb cards, each graded PSA NM 7 or NM-MT 8, generated tremendous interest among bidders with each far exceeding the pre-auction estimates and SMR values. The 1909-1911 T206 Old Mill Ty Cobb Bat Off Shoulder PSA NM-MT 8 (SMR value $17,500) sold for $29,625, the 1909-1911 T206 Ty Cobb Red Background PSA NM-MT 8 (SMR value $17,000) sold for $26,662, and the 1909-1911 T206 Ty Cobb Green Background PSA NM 7 (SMR value $17,500) sold for $32,587.

Additional Vintage Card Highlights: A 1952 Topps #311 Mickey Mantle Once Owned by Mantle in EX-MT condition  was worth a significant premium due to its special provenance, selling for $35,550 (SMR value $20,000). An extremely impressive 1950-1951 Toleteros Complete SGC-Graded Master Set (192) Including Joshua Gibson SGC EX/NM 80 (res. $10,000) sold for $38,512. A 1952 Topps #191 Yogi Berra PSA NM-MT+ 8.5 (SMR value $9,000) sold for $17,775. A 1903 E107 Breisch-Williams Ed Delahanty (res. $2,500; est. $5,000+) sold for $23,700. An extremely rare 1910 T209 Contentnea Cigarettes “Photo Series” Souvenir Album, recently discovered among family heirlooms and consigned to REA, sold for an impressive $29,625. A newly discovered group of Pacific Coast League Zeenut cards afforded bidders the opportunity to compete for two of the most iconic cards issued by the company: a 1922 Zeenut PCL Jim Thorpe (reserve $1,000) which sold for $6,517 and a 1935 Zeenut PCL Joe DiMaggio with Coupon (reserve $2,500) which sold for $14,220. A 1922 E120 American Caramel PSA-Graded Complete Set Minus 1 (reserve $10,000) realized $26,662. A 1933 R319 Goudey #106 Napoleon Lajoie PSA VG-EX 4 sold for $20,145. A 1948-1949 Leaf #79 Jackie Robinson Rookie SGC NM/MT+ 92 sold for $13,035. A 1949 Bowman Complete Set saved by the consignor since childhood realized $14,220. A 1952 Bowman #101 Mickey Mantle SGC NM+ 86 sold for $7,110, a particularly extraordinary price for this modern classic that has so many recorded auction sales at lower levels (SMR value $2,600). An original-owner 1956 Topps Complete Set sold for $14,220

Unopened Material: Demand for unopened packs and boxes is a specialty at REA and as always delivered strong prices across the board. A 1951 Topps Red Back Wax Box with 107 Unopened Packs just recently discovered (we were told they were found in a barn!) sold for $11,850. A 1960 Topps Baseball Unopened Wax Box - 22 Second Series Packs (reserve $500, estimate $1,000+) sold for an eye-popping $8,295. 1970 Topps Baseball Sixth and Seventh Series Unopened Wax Box (reserve $1,000, estimate $4,000+) was hammered down at $10,072. A 1972 Topps Unopened Fifth/Sixth Series Wax Box (reserve $2,000) sold for $5,332. A 1973 Topps Unopened Fifth Series Wax Box (reserve $1,500, estimate $3,000+) sold for an extremely strong $9,480. A 1951 Topps Magic Football File Binder Including Newly Discovered Unopened Five-Cent Wax Pack (reserve $500) sold for $7,110. A 1970 Topps Football Unopened First Series Wax Box (reserve $1,000, estimate $2,000+) sold at $10,665. A 1976 Topps Football Unopened Wax Box (reserve $500, estimate $1,000+) sold for $2,962. A 1973 Topps Football Unopened Wax Box (reserve $500, estimate $1,000/$1,500) sold for $3,851. An Extremely Rare 1971-1972 Topps Basketball Unopened Wax Box (reserve $2,500, estimate $5,000/$10,000) sold for astounding $23,700. A 1973-1974 Topps Basketball Unopened Wax Box (reserve $1,000, estimate $2,000/$3,000) realized $10,072.

Additional Auction Highlights:

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Autographs: REA’s spring auction featured one of the finest selections of signed baseballs in recent memory with many significant rarities available for sale for the first time in many years, in some cases decades. A Walter Johnson Single-Signed Baseball Used in the Final Game of the 1924 World Series (reserve $2,000) was originally purchased by the consignor fifteen years ago for $5,966 at public auction and realized an amazing $32,587 at REA. An extraordinarily rare 1919 Dan Brouthers Single-Signed Ball (reserve $10,000) sold for $47,400, an auction record for this ball. A rare George Wright Single-Signed 1926 Golden Jubilee Presentation Ball (reserve $2,500) sold for an extraordinary $22,515. A John Montgomery Ward Single-Signed Mini Ball (reserve $2,500) was hammered down at $20,145. An impressive 1933 American League All-Star Team-Signed Ball - Complete with All Eighteen Players Including Ruth and Gehrig (reserve $5,000) that was entirely new to the hobby sold for a remarkable $32,587. A 1948 Babe Ruth Single-Signed Ball (reserve $2,500), with the unusual inscription “To My Little Pal Mickey,” fascinated bidders (many of which, we should note, were indeed named “Mike” or “Mickey”). A non-Mike-or-Mickey bidder, however, wound up outbidding all the “Mickeys” and “Mikes”, taking this gem home for $9,480. A Circa 1948 Honus Wagner Single-Signed Ball (reserve $1,000, estimate $3,000+) sold for $26,662. A 1939 Ty Cobb Single-Signed Baseball (reserve $500, estimate $2,000+) realized $7,110. A Circa 1937 Tris Speaker Single-Signed Ball with Original Family Provenance (reserve $500, estimate $2,000+) sold for $5,628. A Cy Young Single-Signed Ball with Rare Sweet-Spot Signature (reserve $2,000) sold for $13,035. A High-Grade 1956 New York Yankees World Champions Team-Signed Ball (reserve $300, estimate $1,000+) realized $7,702. A 1960-1969 Topps Autographed Baseball-Card Collection of 3,314 cards hammered down at $11,850. A pair of Mickey Mantle Signed Replica Jerseys (reserve $500, estimate $1,000+) sold for $3,555.

Player Contracts: Player contracts have long been a specialty at REA. Collectors again showed their tremendous interest in this popular area of collecting, responding with record-setting prices. A 1917-1919 Ray Schalk Chicago White Sox Contract (reserve $1,000, estimate $3,000+) sold for $13,035. A 1931 Hack Wilson Chicago Cubs Contract Signed by Wilson, Bill Veeck, and Branch Rickey (reserve $1,000, estimate $3,000+) was hammered down at $10,072. A 1953 Larry Doby Cleveland Indians Contract (reserve $300, estimate $1,000+) sold for $3,258. A 1959 Warren Spahn Milwaukee Braves Contract (reserve $300, estimate $1,000+) sold for $2,962. A 1973 Mike Schmidt Puerto Rican League Contract (reserve $400) sold for $3,258. A 1975 Willie McCovey San Diego Padres Contract purchased at public auction for $191 just months prior to being consigned to REA realized an amazing $2,962.

First World Series Press Pin: A new-to-the-hobby example of the 1911 Philadelphia Athletics World Series Press Pin - First World Series Press Pin Ever Issued was featured in REA’s auction and highlighted a small group of memorabilia consigned by family of sportswriter Joseph McCready. The pin was offered with a starting bid of $5,000 and soared to an extraordinary closing price of $53,325, shattering all previous records for this rarity as well as setting a new auction record for any press pin ever. Also part of the McCready collection were two 1914 Philadelphia Athletics World Series Press Pins (selling for $5,036 and $4,740, respectively), a 1911 Philadelphia Athletics Gold and Diamond Presentation Pendant (reserve $1,000) which sold for $21,330, and a 1913 Philadelphia Athletics World Championship Gold Pocket Watch sold for $26,662. The ideal provenance of originating from a notable Philadelphia sportswriter made the memorabilia in this collection especially desirable and played a role in the aggressive bidding on all pieces.

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 Game-Used Jerseys and Bats: Collectors are often driven towards memorabilia that was issued to specific players and REA’s selection of game-used jerseys and pro-model bats was especially well-received by bidders. A 1963 Sandy Koufax Los Angeles Dodgers Game-Used Road Jersey from his MVP and Cy Young Award-Winning Season (reserve $50,000) sold for a $201,450, a new auction record for any Koufax jersey ever. A 1971 Willie Mays San Francisco Giants Game-Used Home Jersey (reserve $10,000, estimate $20,000+) consigned to REA by a former minor league player from within the Giants farm system sold for an extraordinary $44,437. A 1970 Hank Aaron Atlanta Braves Signed Game-Used Home Jersey (reserve $10,000, estimate $20,000+) sold for a remarkable $53,325. A 1970 Brooks Robinson Baltimore Orioles Signed Game-Used Road Jersey (reserve $5,000, estimate $10,000+) sold for an amazing $35,550. REA memorabilia expert Tom D’Alonzo notes, “The jerseys exceeded all expectations. But they were all particularly great and really all deserved to sell for record prices. As jersey authenticity processes have improved over the years, the pool of authentic jerseys has gotten smaller and smaller. Perfect jerseys of Hall of Famers such as these are probably going to be a lot more expensive in years to come.” The bull market in jerseys was not limited to Hall of Famers: A 1959 Elston Howard New York Yankees Game-Used Road Jersey with Pants and Stirrups (reserve $500, estimate $1,500+) realized $10,072. A 1956 Tom Alston St. Louis Cardinals Game-Used Home Jersey (reserve $300, estimate $1,000+) sold for $6,517. Alston’s jersey was especially significant as the first African-American player in franchise history. A 1961 Roger Maris bat signed and inscribed on the day of his 60th Home Run with Provenance from Clubhouse Attendant (reserve $10,000) led the way in the bat category generating a final sale price of $38,512. A 1939-1942 Ted Williams Rookie-Era Pro-Model Bat MEARS 9.5 sold for $29,625. An Extraordinary 1959-1960 Ted Williams Signed Pro-Model Bat MEARS 9.5 (reserve $5,000, estimate $10,000/$15,000) sold for $21,330. A 1946-1948 Joe DiMaggio Pro Model Bat with Outstanding Provenance (reserve $5,000, estimate $10,000+) sold for $16,590.

MORE Memorabilia Highlights: A 1910 Philadelphia A’s World Championship Trophy Cup Presented to Jack Lapp (reserve $2,500, estimate $5,000+) sold for $23,700. A 1912 Boston Red Sox World Championship Sterling Silver Cigarette Case (reserve $1,000) was a fascinating item that an antique cigarette case dealer purchased in a collection, happened to notice it had a baseball connection, and took the time to call REA to see if it might be worth more as a baseball item than the several hundred dollars it was worth just as a cigarette case. He was handsomely rewarded for his efforts! The case sold for $14,220. A 1908-1918 Baseball Magazine Collection of 117 issues sold for $11,850. An extraordinary 1920 Babe Ruth and Ty Cobb Photograph (reserve $500, estimate $2,000) realized $7,702. A 1928 Original New York Yankees Team News Photo (reserve $500, estimate $1,500) purchased by the consignor for $2,900 at public auction just months prior to consigning to REA, realized $5,332. A 1936 Original New York Yankees Team News Photo (reserve $200) purchased by the same consignor (who was reorganizing his collection) for $329 at public auction in 2012 realized an amazing $4,740 in REA’s spring auction.

Other Sports: The auction also included an impressive selection of items from other sports, all of which sold for extremely strong prices. Leading the way in this category were a pair of Muhammad Ali Fight-Worn Shoes from the “Rumble in the Jungle” bout against George Foreman (Ex-Drew “Bundini” Brown Collection; and Photo and Video Matched), which were offered with a reserve of $10,000 and an estimate of $20,000+. The shoes generated tremendous interest from collectors, as well as garnering national attention via ESPN, and were hammered down at $100,725. An Extraordinary 1968-1972 Wilt Chamberlain Los Angeles Lakers Game-Used Road Jersey - The Only MEARS A10 Lakers Jersey (reserve $10,000, estimate $25,000+) sold for $50,362. A 1961-1962 Paul Arizin Philadelphia Warriors Game-Used Road Jersey (reserve $5,000) was hammered down at $13,035. A 1894 N302 Mayo’s Cut Plug Football SGC-Graded Near Complete Set (reserve $2,500, estimate $5,000/$10,000) sold for $16,590. A number of rare golf lots were presented for sale, including a 1900 Cope Bros. Co. “Cope’s Golfers” Complete Set (50): #3 PSA Set Registry (reserve $2,500, estimate $5,000+) which sold for $21,330, a 1914 Marsuma “Famous Golfers and Their Strokes” Complete Set (50): #1 PSA Set Registry (reserve $1,000, estimate $2,000+) which sold for $8,887, and a 1928 Crescent Confectionery #94 Bobby Jones PSA 5 (reserve $1,000, SMR value $5,000) which sold for $9,480. A 1948 Leaf Boxing #50 Rocky Graziano (reserve $5,000, estimate $10,000/$15,000), one of boxing card collecting’s great classics and extreme rarities, sold for $38,512.

Americana: The wide-ranging reach of REA’s marketing and the breadth of collectors who watch the auction was illustrated by outstanding prices on many pieces of Americana. One of the most fascinating pieces in the auction, the Mail Register from The “Dakota” - John Lennon’s Apartment Building - with John Lennon Signature, drew great interest from bidders and sold for $7,110. A circa 1963 Beatles Signed Album Page, featuring the signatures of McCartney, Lennon, Starr, and Harrison, sold for $8,295 just a few months after being purchased elsewhere at public auction for $6,082. A 1792 George Washington (as President) and Thomas Jefferson Signed Appointment sold for $20,145. A high-grade first issue of Playboy magazine sold for $6,517 while a complete run of issues starting with #2 from 1954 and running through 1995 sold for $10,072. A 1952 Shock SuspenStories #3 Original Cover Art By Wally Wood sold for $20,145. It had been consigned to REA by a collector who purchased it at a highly promoted public comic art auction years ago for $12,650. A 1911 Thomas Edison Signed Letter and Related Business Phonograph drew spirited interest as an exceptional historical relic and sold for $7,110. It too had been sold within the past year at public auction for $3,585.

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Non-Sports Cards (1886-1976): While REA is primarily known for baseball cards and memorabilia, non-sport cards and card artwork from all eras have always been an important area of focus. In this auction, non-sport collectors were treated to a treasure trove of newly discovered Topps material dating to the late-1960s. Among the highlights were five unopened wax boxes of 1966 Topps Batman trading cards which realized an astounding $27,255. A 1963 Topps “Monster Flip Movies” collection including a display box, two sets, wrappers, and singles gave bidders a fright that they might never see these for sale again, soaring to $4,740 (reserve $300, estimate $500+). In total, the collection of material, which originated from a former Topps salesman, realized $72,581. Among older cards, a phenomenal collection of sixty-one 1887 N288 Buchner Gold Coin “Police Inspectors & Captains and Chiefs of the Fire Dept.” tobacco cards stunned all observers with a selling price of $29,625 (reserve $2,000, estimate $4,000). An extraordinary selection of five non-sport original artworks by legendary artist Norm Saunders from the 1962 “Mars Attacks” gum card set was offered as well, selling for $63,990 collectively and lead by the artwork to card #21 “Prize Captive” which realized $17,775.  An incredibly high-grade 1952 Topps “Look ‘n See” Complete Set realized $7,110. Collectors showed their appreciation for nineteenth-century tobacco advertising banners with nine different pieces selling for a combined $40,349 including a record-setting price for an 1888 G16 Allen & Ginter “Racing Colors of the World” tobacco banner, which sold for an extraordinary $16,590 (reserve $1,000, estimate $2,000+).

Many other auction records were shattered for pre-1948 baseball cards, nineteenth-century baseball cards and memorabilia, non-sport cards, and Americana. Further information and complete auction results are available online at www.RobertEdwardAuctions.com

Copies of the 792-page full-color premium catalog are also still available free. Go to www.RobertEdwardAuctions.com, click “Free Catalog,” and fill in your name and address. Robert Edward Auctions is currently assembling its next sale. For further information contact: Robert Edward Auctions, PO Box 7256, Watchung, NJ or call (908)-226-9900.

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Robert Edward Auctions, LLC is a one of the world’s leading specialty auction houses, devoted exclusively to the sale of rare baseball cards, memorabilia, and Americana. 




REA’s $9.56 Million Baseball Card Auction Sets Records!!!

T206 Wagner Sells For $651,750; Babe Ruth Rookie Card $142,200;Famous T206 Doyle hammered down at $414,750; Countless Baseball Card Auction Records Shattered At REA!!!

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Watchung, New Jersey. The strength of the high-end baseball card and memorabilia market was impossible to miss at Robert Edward’s record-setting May 12, 2012 auction. An astounding 177 lots sold for $10,000 or more. Collectors, dealers, and market watchers look to REA’s annual event as the key barometer of the health of the market and the most important auction event of the year. According to REA president Robert Lifson, “The market was extremely strong across the board. The auction results exceeded our expectations and, most important, exceeded our consignors’ expectations. The great prices are the result of many factors including, of course, being given the very best material in the world to offer, care in cataloguing, the biggest circulation, extensive research and authentication, the well-deserved confidence of buyers, and an emphasis on the integrity of the auction process. It’s a powerful combination.” By any measure, this was one of the most successful auctions in the history of collecting. “It was also the smoothest running auction in all respects, including collecting the money. As always at Robert Edward Auctions, there were no delays in collecting money and no delays getting it in the hands of consignors. That’s another extremely strong area for REA.” All consignors were paid in full, 100 cents on the dollar with no adjustments due to nonpaying bidders, and in record time. “That’s the standard we strive for and achieve at REA when it comes to paying consignors. Perfection. Consignors really appreciate getting paid 100 cents on the dollar.”

REA Statistics: Record prices were set on countless items, both in cards and memorabilia, and spanning all eras. The stunning prices on all nineteenth and early twentieth century baseball cards and memorabilia totaled a staggering $9.56 million. The 1631 lots, offered on behalf of 317 different consignors, were won by an incredible 665 different bidders, illustrating the power of the marketing and auction process, and the breadth of bidder interest. A staggering 23,781 bids were placed. Successful bidders included some of the nation’s most prestigious museums, universities, and corporate institutional collections, as well as representatives from numerous Major League teams. “All areas of the auction received a tremendous response and very strong prices. Nineteenth-century baseball items were unbelievable, as always, as were all early baseball cards, advertising and display pieces, graded cards, Babe Ruth items, autographs, memorabilia, non-sport cards and artwork.” Thousands of bidders from all over the world participated. The average lot sold for $5,861 and on average realized more than double the high-end estimate. An incredible 99.51% of the lots sold.

wagner4.JPGT206 Wagner and Doyle: The T206 Honus Wagner and the legendary T206 “Slow Joe” Doyle, selling for $651,750 and $414,750, respectively, set the tone. The Wagner, named “The Date-Stamped Wagner” due to having the date “October 16, 1909″ stamped on the back,  was last offered in the June 1997 REA auction, and at that time sold for what was then a very impressive price of $119,310. In 1997, it was one of only a few cards that had ever sold for more than $100,000. Notes REA’s president Robert Lifson, “Just like in the stock market, collectors often look at values only over a short period of time. We always say that in the short run, at auction, anything can happen. The same card or item can sell for more or less when offered in a short period of time and this does not necessarily provide a strong indication of market direction. Sometimes you have to stand back and look at the numbers over a long period of time to really appreciate how the market has changed. This card has increased in value over 500% over the past fifteen years. The sale at $651,750 was not a fluke, or a case of two bidders battling it out. There were over twenty-five different serious interested bidders!”  The card was consigned to the 2012 auction directly from the buyer at the 1997 REA sale. “The seller was naturally thrilled. But we think the buyer did particularly well too. This is a great Wagner. The card not only looks great, it has a special and unique story. The fact that it has a 1909 date stamp on the back from the day of the last game of the 1909 World Series is fascinating. We don’t have a crystal ball for values, but if another fifteen years passes until this card surfaces in the market again, we may find that its value is in the millions. This is what we fully expect will be the case.”

The rare T206 “Slow Joe” Doyle card was from the Joe Pelaez Collection. Joe Pelaez (1931-2010) purchased the card at auction from collecting legend Lew Lipset way back in 1990 for the then incredible sum of $19,000. At the time it was the second highest price ever paid for a baseball card at auction, trailing only the T206 Wagner. The card was consigned to the REA sale directly by the Pelaez family. “The last rare Doyle we auctioned was from the estate of Charlie Conlon in 2009. That card was graded Vg-Ex and sold for a then-record $329,000″ notes REA. “The Joe Pelaez example was graded Vg, so we thought it might bring a little less, but that’s not what happened. There was enormous interest. It sold for more. That characterizes the results for a lot of the premium items in the auction.”  The card realized an astounding $451,750.

12175.JPG1916 Babe Ruth Rookie: In addition to the T206 Wagner and T206 Doyle, the 1916 M101-4 Babe Ruth rookie card proved that recent sales are not an aberration and that it can now be counted on to sell for well into six figures in high grade. “This card has a tremendous demand. It has taken its place as one of the great icons of baseball card collecting. Anyone who has followed the value of this card can’t help but see that it has exploded in value over the past few years,” notes REA vintage card expert Dean Faragi. “It’s always been a great card. It’s just being appreciated more now. It should be!” In this auction, a PSA EX-MT 6 example sold for $142,200, setting a new record for the grade. A second example, in VG-EX, realized a remarkable $77,025.

Nineteenth-Century Baseball Card Rarities: An amazing newly-discovered find of 1868-1871 baseball CDV team cards was an auction highlight for many serious collectors. It was definitely the highlight for the consignors, a family of general hobbyists (who do not collect baseball cards) who happened to buy these cards on a lark at an antique shop over twenty years ago. They’ve had them lying around the house in a wooden cigar box ever since! The entire collection consisted of 130 CDV photographs, including boxers, politicians, and various other subjects. All were offered in the auction, but the eight baseball team cards were what made this an incredible and significant find. The eight team cards alone sold for a staggering total of $182,490!!! The prize of the collection, a Peck & Snyder trade card of the 1868 Brooklyn Atlantics (res. $5,000, est. open), realized a record-setting $82,950. The 1870 Forest City Baseball Club CDV (res. $1,000; est. open), featuring Al Spalding from his playing days, also set a record, selling for $32,587. “These were special cards and one of the highlight finds of nineteenth-century team cards ever,” comments REA’s president. “The family was shocked when we told them how valuable the cards were. And when they contacted us, we were pretty conservative about the value. We told them “Think in the neighborhood of $100,000″. We don’t like to set expectations too high. That can lead to disappointment. We knew they would sell for top dollar. The $100,000 figure stunned them.  It’s not every day that a box of old photos you paid $20 for years ago, that’s literally been on a shelf in the kitchen, turns out to be worth six figures! It was fun to share the excitement with them, and it was great to see the cards exceed their highest expectations by so much. The $182,490 was just for the eight baseball team cards. That doesn’t even include the balance of the collection which sold for thousands more! This is the type of find that makes the auction especially exciting for us here at REA.”

12557g.jpgThe Ty Cobb Tin: The 1912 Ty Cobb Tobacco Tin, in extraordinary MINT condition, set a new world record for this extremely desirable tobacco item. Long revered both for its great rarity, display value, and its connection to the famous T206 Ty Cobb with advertising for Ty Cobb Tobacco on the reverse, there have been a few examples that have surfaced at auction over the past couple of years. This has been in part because of the high-profile discovery of a low-grade example on the TV show “Auction Kings”. This helped pull a few hidden examples out of attics. But the condition of the REA Ty Cobb Tin made this example sell for far more than any other. “This was a rare case when we knew an item would set a record,” according to the REA staff.  The condition of this tin was clearly better than any other, by a wide margin, and this was not lost on bidders: When the dust settled, REA’s Ty Cobb tin more than doubled the previous auction record, selling for $88,875. “Condition matters with all collectibles, not just cards. It may seem incredible that Ty Cobb tins can sell elsewhere for $10,000 or $20,000, and this one sells for $88,875. But it really was that much better than all the others,” according to REA. “Our standard good-humored response to bidders asking about the condition was that it was about 1,000 times better than the next best one, and sometimes we’d add that after seeing this one, we think that all the other Ty Cobb tins should all be gathered together, put in a trash compactor, and crushed. We were just kidding, but this tin was really amazing. It may have been a record price, but we think the buyer got a great deal.”

12653.JPGVintage Card Prices STRONG At REA: REA is first and foremost a baseball card auction, so it is not surprising that the big money, as usual, was in the cards: A 1933 Goudey #106 Nap Lajoie (PSA 9 MINT), universally recognized as one of card collecting’s most desirable rarities, realized $118,500. This very card had been purchased by the consignor many years ago for what was then a very princely sum of $50,000. “This is another case of the strong market bringing out great cards that have been hidden away for years. It doesn’t happen often enough, but when it does, the market definitely responds with enthusiasm,” notes REA. And not just the T206 Wagner but all things related to the famous T206 set were very strong. The T206 Eddie Plank in EX-MT 6 (MC) condition (reserve $25,000; estimate $50,000+) sold for $94,800. The sale also included two additional T206 Planks, though in lesser grades: A Plank example in Good condition (Res. $5,000; est. $10,000/$20,000+) sold for $29,625. The famous “Mr. X Collection” Plank realized $56,287. The “Mr. X Collection” designation on this card was the amusing pedigree that was famously assigned to the label by PSA for the mysterious “Mr. X” in 2005.  All that was ever revealed about “Mr. X” was that he was very famous and that he was in show business. To this day, we have no idea who “Mr. X” is or was, but we do know that he did a great job of assembling an extremely high quality T206 set.

1914-1915 E145 Cracker Jack Card Highlights: A 1914 Cracker Jack of Ty Cobb graded NM-MT+ 8.5 (res. 15,000/est. $25,000+) was on the radar of dozens of bidders. “This card is a favorite of advanced collectors, and this particular example was by far the finest we have ever seen.” The 1914 Cracker Jack Ty Cobb lists for $40,000 graded PSA NM-MT 8. “Collectors were on their own in deciding what premium to put on the stellar condition. Everyone knew what a PSA NM-MT 8 was worth, but the fact that this was just a half a grade higher, with no SMR catalog value for the slightly higher grade, made this a little bit of a “wild card” for predicting value. “It’s easy to say that it’s splitting hairs when talking about a NM-MT PSA 8 versus a NM-MT+ PSA 8.5. We sometimes say that too. But in this case, the fact is the card really deserved the higher grade. The buyers all agreed, and it really mattered to them.” The well-deserved “Plus” on this PSA 8.5 all alone was worth over $40,000: The card was hammered down for an incredible $88,575.

As always, strong prices were seen on all high-grade Cracker Jacks at REA: The 1915 E145 Cracker Jack #88 Christy Mathewson SGC MINT 96 (res. $10,000; est. $20,000+) was sold for $41,475. The letter from the seller says it all “Please accept my deep gratitude and appreciation for selling the Christy Mathewson card.  I was truly surprised by the final gavel price. As I had told you when I consigned it, I had placed it on the market twice with (Another Auction House name edited out by REA) since I first bought it in 2009.  Neither time did it reach near the reserve price of $20k.  So I recognize now the difference an excellent auction house can make in drawing attention to an exceptional item, especially when financial circumstances are an issue.”

13323.JPGAdditional Vintage Card Highlights: A 1909-1911 T206 White Border Collection of 43 cards Including Cobb and Johnson (res. $2,000; est. $4,000/$6,000) was not expected to be an auction highlight when they were sent to REA, but turned out to be an extremely exciting lot. The cards were saved by the consignor’s grandfather, who collected these cards as a youngster in 1910. Apparently a friend or someone in the family was exclusively a fan of Tolstoi tobacco. All 43 cards had the scarce “Tolstoi” tobacco advertisement on the reverse, making this small group a very significant lot for rare-back T206 collectors. The lot was hammered down at $20,145. (The family that consigned these cards is naturally ecstatic and are still wondering how this is possible!). An extraordinary newly discovered 1915 Boston Red Sox Real-Photo Team Postcard with Babe Ruth (Rookie) was found among a small group of baseball items that were saved since the time of issue by a the consignor’s Boston-area family. This postcard has long been recognized as one of the premier baseball postcards in the collecting world, and its value has continued to rise, but its best days may be ahead: this is one of the very few cards which can truly lay claim to being Babe Ruth’s rookie card. In 1991 the Copeland example sold at Sotheby’s for a then-stunning $6,050, by far setting a record for a baseball postcard. An example offered sold at REA in 2007 (in far lesser condition) realized $9,400. The newly discovered example (res. $2,500; est. open) set a new record for this extremely significant rarity, selling for $21,330. A 1933 R319 Goudey #144 Babe Ruth - PSA NM-MT 8 (res. $5,000; est. $10,000+), which lists in the SMR at $17,650 and was purchased by the consignor at another auction for $18,000 in 2010, sold for $26,625. A 1935 Zeenut PCL Joe DiMaggio with Coupon in Good condition (res. $1,000; est. $2,000/$4,000+) sold for an impressive $14,220. 1952 Topps Complete PSA-Graded Set Minus Five (402 of 407 cards, no Mantle) (res. $5,000; est. $10,000/$15,000)  sold for $38,512. A complete set of 48 1909-1911 T206 Southern Leaguers all graded PSA EX 5 (res. $2,500; est. $5,000/$10,000+) with an SMR value of $13,920 sold for $21,330. A T206 Magie Error card in GD+ condition (from the Joe Pelaez Collection) realized $17,775, a record price for the grade. A 1909-1911 E90-1 American Caramel Co. Joe Jackson PSA VG-EX 4 (res. $10,000) sold for $32,587. An extraordinary 1968 Topps 3-D Bob Clemente - PSA GEM MINT 10 (res. $5,000, est open) sold for $35,550. The 1916 M101-4 Sporting News/Furniture City Brewing Complete Set of 200 Uncut Sheet (res. $10,000; est. $20,000+) proved to be an excellent investment for the consignor: Originally purchased in REA’s April 2005 auction for $19,720 (then a record price), the sheet sold for a new record at $47,400.

Additional Auction Highlights:

Nineteenth-century cards and memorabilia were extremely strong, setting record after record, as is always the case at REA. An 1889 S. F. Hess Tobacco card of Hall of Famer Tim Keefe (res. $2,000; est. $4,000+) in GD condition was a particularly exciting rarity with a fascinating provenance: This was the first time this card had ever been offered - or even seen - in the modern collecting world. The card was found years ago in a farmhouse in Vermont. It was part of a large collection of nonsport cards dating from the 1880s to the 1910 era that just happened to include a few baseball cards. This was the only valuable baseball card and the only S. F. Hess card in the collection. While its discovery was fortuitous for the consignor, its price realized was perhaps even more fortuitous: the S. F. Hess Keefe set a new auction record for an S. F. Hess card, selling for an extraordinary $47,400. An 1868 Cincinnati Red Stockings Large-Format Team Composite Display Photo (purchased by the consignor at auction elsewhere in April 2003 for $8,210) was offered with a reserve of $5,000 (est. open), and a hope for a profit. The consignor was not disappointed: It sold for $23,700. A small but exciting newly-discovered collection of 1887-1889 N172 Old Judges, consisting of 61 cards with minor back damage, once again illustrated that technical grades take a distant back seat among sophisticated collectors in valuing classic nineteenth-century baseball cards. Broken up into several lots with a total reserve of $3,000, the group sold for $20,026. A collection of 425 1887-1889 N172 Old Judges, also in various conditions and broken up into smaller lots, realized a total of $90,356.

Joe Jackson: All Joe Jackson items were extremely strong. This is particularly apparent when comparing the current REA auction prices with those of the same items from past years. The 1913 T200 Fatima Cleveland Americans Premium with Joe Jackson,   purchased at REA in 2010 for $18,800, was consigned to the 2012 auction directly from the buyer at that auction. With a reserve of $5,000, and an estimate of $10,000/$15,000+, the final selling price in 2012 was $29,625. The 1915 E145 Cracker Jack #103 Joe Jackson - PSA EX-MT 6, with an   SMR value of $11,250, was presented with a reserve of $2,500, and an estimate of $5,000/$10,000+.  Purchased by the consignor at REA in 2010 for $14,100, it sold for $22,515. An exceptional Joe Jackson Original Charles Conlon Photo - PSA/DNA Type 1 photograph, as noted in the catalog description, was purchased by the consignor at public auction for $15,496 in 2002 and it has remained in his possession since that time. REA memorabilia specialist Tom D’Alonzo comments: “We were a little worried about this one. It was a great photo, as good as they come, but there have been a lot of vintage photos hitting the market in recent years. Literally millions. We were concerned this might have an impact. The consignor was also sure he was going to lose a lot of money. He was resigned to that fate. He knew that millions of photos have been sold by various newspapers and photo archives in very recent years. How could that not have an impact? We always try to be conservative, and manage expectations, but in this case, we were also convinced he was going to lose a lot of money. The only question in our minds was, “How much?” What this auction shows us is that vintage photo collectors have become very sophisticated, and they really do differentiate between the great vintage photos and the run-of-the-mill photos. This was a great vintage photo.” The original Joe Jackson photo by the legendary Charles Conlon, with a reserve of $2,000, an open estimate, and a certain expectation of great loss, sold for an incredible record $32,588. “The seller still can’t believe it.”

Autographs: A Christy Mathewson Single-Signed Ball dated by Mathewson on the Day of his 1921 Testimonial at the Polo Grounds (res. $10,000; est. open) sold for an extraordinary $44,437. A Babe Ruth Single-Signed Baseball with Outstanding Original-Owner Provenance (graded PSA/DNA NEAR MINT 7) was new to the modern collecting world. This ball was consigned directly by the family of the gentleman who personally obtained it from Ruth in the mid 1940s. The SMR value for a NEAR MINT 7 single-signed Babe Ruth ball is $30,000. The condition, provenance, and iron-clad authenticity combined to make this a particularly desirable Babe Ruth ball. The merits of the ball were not lost on bidders. With a reserve of $10,000 and an estimate of $25,000+, the Ruth single-signed ball soared to $56,287. An unusual auction record was represented by an Official American League (Cronin) ball signed by Neil Armstrong, the first man to walk on the moon. Of all the celebrated astronauts in American history, Armstrong remains the most famous, as well as the most reluctant signer. With a reserve of just $500, and an estimate of $1,500+, the Armstrong ball soared to an earth-shattering $20,145, making this the highest auction price ever realized in the Universe for a baseball single-signed by a living person.

Baseball Hall of Famer Player Contracts: One of the most advanced collections of Major League contracts of Hall of Famers to ever come to auction was a significant highlight. In total, the thirty contracts sold for $208,974. A few examples of the auction prices: 1930 Eddie Collins Signed Philadelphia Athletics Contract (res. $500) sold for $14,220; 1931 Jesse Haines St. Louis Cardinals contract (res. $500) sold for $11,257; 1934 Burleigh Grimes Pittsburgh Pirates Contract (res. $200) sold for $10,665; 1912 May Carey (res. $1,000) was hammered down at $14,220; 1915 George “Highpockets” Kelly (res. $1,000) and 1930 Leo Durocher (res. $500) each realized $11,257. The impressive prices were not just for older Hall of Fame player contracts. The prices for more modern contracts were also strong: 1954 Duke Snider (res. $500) sold for $10,665; 1963 Stargel1 (res. $500) sold for $11,850; 1964 Lou Brock (res. $300) sold for $8,887; and Carl Yastrzemski’s 1968 contract sold for $8,295.

Additional Autograph Highlights: An extraordinary 1933 American League All-Star Team-Signed Ball with Ruth, Gehrig, and Twelve Other Hall of Fame Players (res. $10,000) sold for $38,512. The 1860 Beadle’s Dime Base-Ball Player autographed by Chadwick and accompanied with a 1925 letter of provenance from John T. Doyle, President of the American Sports Pub. Co., was particularly appreciated for its extraordinary provenance and authenticity, realizing $10,072. The Alexander Cartwright Signed Book may have been the sleeper of the auction: From Cartwright’s personal library, signed by Cartwright in 1839, the cover design as well as content of this signed edition of book (entitled The Club) suggest it may have a connection to the very origins of baseball. Selling for $9,480, the book also happens to feature what may be the only “Alexander J. Cartwright Jr.” full-name Cartwright signature known, and this may also be the earliest known signature example for any member of the Baseball Hall of Fame. An exceptional 1950s Mel Ott Single-Signed Baseball (res. $5,000; est. $10,000+) sold for $29,625. A George Sisler Single-Signed “Stat” Ball (res. $1,000. Estimate $2,500+) that was purchased by the consignor at another auction for $3,255 in 2000 (then a very impressive price) sold for $14,220, a record price for a Sisler single. Circa 1943 Negro League Autograph Book Featuring the Rare Signatures of Josh Gibson and Ray Brown (Twice)! (res. $2500; est. open) soared to $29,625. An exceptional 1883 Cap Anson Signed Chicago White Stockings Payment Voucher (res. $2,500) was especially appreciated by advanced collectors because it dated from Anson’s playing days and had a connection to baseball. It was not surprising that it sold for a significant premium to the many other Anson signatures in the market, selling for $8,888. A cut signature of nineteenth-century pitching star Amos Rusie (res. $2,000) with outstanding provenance was a tremendous Hall of Fame signature rarity. This was the first Rusie signature REA has ever offered and despite being just a cut (literally a signature “cut” from a document, which are rarely offered by REA) the rarity and confidence in authenticity of the signature combined to send this extreme rarity to a final selling price of $9,480.

1919 “Black Sox” Contract: One of the most highly sought-after signed items in the auction was the 1919 Chick Gandil Chicago White Sox Player Contract. In addition to its obvious great historical significance (Gandil was banned from Baseball for being one of the key “Black Sox” players and the contract, of course, is from the year of the scandal), this piece also has a remarkable provenance: It originates from Bill Veeck’s wife, Mary Francis, and was accompanied by a signed one-page letter of provenance from her detailing its history. (Veeck purchased the White Sox in 1958 from the Comiskey family.) This extremely important contract has only seen the auction block once before: It was purchased by REA’s consignor for $14,548 at another auction in 2003. With a reserve of $5,000 and an open estimate, at REA the contract soared to $44,437.

Game-Used Jerseys and Bats: 1914 Les Mann Boston Braves Jacket - Only Known Example - with Photo Documentation! (res. $10,000) sold for $21,330. A 1908-1910 Ty Cobb Pro-Model Decal Bat (res. $2,000) sold for $16,590; a 1923 Babe Ruth H&B 40K Signature Pro-Model Bat (res. $10,000) - the very same style as Babe Ruth is seen holding on Opening Day at Yankee Stadium in 1923, sold for $21,330; 1921-1931 George Sisler Pro-Model Bat (res. $1,000; est. $2500+) sold for $7,702; Circa 1945 Hank Greenberg Pro-Model Bat (res. $2,000) realized $8,295; and a particularly desirable due to provenance 1950 Joe DiMaggio Game-Used Bat that was a gift to Jackie Jensen during his rookie season (res. $5,000) sold for $16,590. 1973 Hank Aaron Atlanta Braves Game-Used Road Jersey and Accompanying Cap (Ex-Joe Gerson Collection) (res. $5,000) was hammered down at $17,775; 1979 Catfish Hunter New York Yankees Signed Road Jersey with Munson Black Armband (res. $2,500) sold for $5,500; 1986 Ron Guidry New York Yankees Game-Used Road Uniform (res. $1,000) realized $3,851; and a 2010 Mariano Rivera New York Yankees Game-Used Home Jersey with Steiner Sports LOA (res. $1,000) sold for $5,628. “With good reason, collectors are rarely comfortable spending big money on extremely modern jerseys. It’s too dangerous. There are so many fakes. But the Steiner provenance made all the difference on the Rivera jersey,” note REA officials. “Collectors know that the Steiner name is gold. Mariano Rivera really wore this jersey.”

Additional Vintage Card highlights:

1911 T205 Gold Border Complete SGC-Graded Set (208 Plus 6 Variations) in various conditions (res. $5,000; est. $10,000/$15,000+ (SMR value $25,090) sold for $29,625; 1912 T207 Brown Background Complete PSA- and SGC-Graded Set (res. $10,000; est. $20,000+) sold for $41,475; an extraordinary 1912 Boston Garter of Eddie Collins (res. $10,000) realized $29,625. A complete set of 1909 T204 Ramly Cigarettes Complete Set (121) carried a $10,000 reserve, and was hammered down at $41,475. T206 near-set (509 of 523 cards) in various grades (res. $25,000; est. $50,000+) sold for $77,025. An extremely impressive near-complete collection of T209 Contentnea Cigarette cards near-set (reserve $10,000) sold for $32,587. An extraordinary near-set of 1916 M101-5 cards with Herpolsheimer Clothing Store advertising backs, saved and consigned directly by the family of the original owner, John Dawley, were broken up into six lots. The 194 cards had been saved by the family since 1916. The consignor, the grandson, had great reservations about the collection being separated. For sentimental reasons, he really wanted them to remain together. Sometimes things work out! One buyer bought all six lots, keeping - at least for the time being - the best collection of M101-5 Herpolsheimers in existence intact.  The set, with a cumulative reserve of $19,000, sold for a grand total of $129,575.

More Memorabilia Highlights: 1912 Boston Red Sox World’s Championship Fob  Presented to Clyde Engle (res. $2,500. Est. open) sold for $38,513. One of only several surviving examples known, this is a record auction price for this important award. The jewelry company (Joyce & Gendreau of North Quincy, MA.) that in 1912 was commissioned by the Red Sox to create these beautiful medals is still in business to this day, and proudly features a different example (only the front is shown; we believe it is the Joe Wood example), along with a brief history of the 1912 Red Sox World’s Championship award, on its website (http://www.joycejlrs.com/html/our_history.htm).  An extraordinary panoramic photograph of the 1916 American Negro Giants including the legends Rube Foster, “Pop” Lloyd, and Pete Hill was offered with a reserve of $5,000 and was hammered down for $38,512. A circa 1935 Spalding Die-Cut Advertising Display (res. $1,000) sold for $9,480.

Dick Perez Original Art: Original paintings by the legendary Dick Perez were unquestionably the highlight of the auction for hundreds of collectors.  Dick Perez is widely recognized as the finest sports artist of our time and is the only artist to have ever been named The Official Artist of the Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum. It was a great honor for Robert Edward Auctions to have been chosen by Dick Perez to offer a selection of original Dick Perez artwork from the award-winning book The Immortals: An Art Collection of Baseball’s Best (Brilliant Graphics, Easton, Pennsylvania, 2010). The twenty-nine lots realized a total of $158,908, including $53,325 for the most highly sought-after lot of paintings honoring The Negro Leagues.

Other Sports: The auction also included an impressive selection of items from other sports, Americana, nonsport cards, and original card artwork, all of which sold extremely strong, including:

Muhammad Ali Fight-Worn Trunks from the “Thrilla in Manilla” Bout against Joe Frazier (Ex-Drew “Bundini” Brown Collection; and Photo and Video Matched!)  Purchased at Sotheby’s in 2002 (where they sold at that time for $58,250), the Ali trunks were consigned to the REA auction directly from the original buyer. At REA, with a reserve of $25,000 and an estimate of $50,000+, the “Thrilla in Manilla” Ali trunks raelized $118,500. The  Muhammad Ali Fight-Worn Robe from the 1972 Heavyweight Title Bout against Jerry Quarry (purchased at auction by the same consignor, also in 2002, for $18,522) sold  for $29,625. Circa 1973-1974 Jerry West Los Angeles Lakers Signed Game-Used Road Jersey (res. $2,500) sold for $15,405. NBA 50 Greatest Players Signed Limited-Edition Lithograph - #1/1 Issued to Tiny Archibald! (res. $10,000; est. $20,000/$40,000) Consigned directly from the Archibald family, sold for $41,475; A 1973 Topps Football Vending Case was purchased by the consignor in 1973 and saved in the attic by accident! Back in 1973, the consignor had purchased a quantity of unopened cases. All were sold back in the 1970s, or so he thought. By luck this case escaped sale, and remained unopened and hidden (even from him) in the attic for decades. With a reserve of $5,000, and an estimate of $10,000+, this unlikely survivor sold for $32,588.

From the collection of legendary hobby pioneer Paul Pollard, a 1951-1952 Parkhurst Hockey Complete Set (res. $2,500; est. $8,000+) sold for an extremely strong $23,700. 1918 Barnum & Bailey Circus Poster - Elephants Playing Football! (res. $1,000) sold for $5,925. The “Michigan Farmhouse” newly discovered example of the “Holy Grail” of football cards: the 1894 Mayo’s Cut Plug Football Dunlop, had a slight trim but was still a very desirable card. Miraculously found beautifully preserved in a scrapbook discovered in a farmhouse being cleaned out, this was a last minute consignment rushed into the auction. With a reserve of $1,000, the newly discovered rarity sold for $11,139.

Non-Sports: The only complete set in uncut sheets in existence of 1940 R145 Gum, Inc. “Superman” gum cards (res. $15,000; est. $30,000+) was a highlight of the non-sport section. Once part of the legendary Robert Lesser Collection, the framed display of three “Superman’ Bubble Gum card sheets soared to a final selling price of $47,400.  1938 R69 Gum, Inc. “Horrors of War” Complete Set (288): #5 PSA Set Registry (purchased in 2011 at another auction for $18,856) was presented with a reserve of $5,000 (est. $10,000/$15,000+) and sold for $23,700. Two 1966 Topps “Batman” (Norm Saunders) artworks were offered: the artwork for card #45 “Trap For The Riddler” (res. $1,000) sold for $$4,740, and the artwork for card #15 “Batman In Action” (res. $2,000) realized $8,887. Three 1962 Mars Attacks original artworks by Norm Saunders, each with a reserve of $5,000, were offered: The artworks to card #4 “Saucers Blast Our Jets” and card #37 “Creeping Menace” sold for $9,480 and $10,072 respectively.  The artwork to card #17 “Beast And The Beauty” was particularly interesting to Mars Attacks collectors as legendary artist Norm Saunders actually included himself in the painting! That artwork sold for $17,775.

Many other auction records were shattered for pre-1948 baseball cards, nineteenth-century baseball cards and memorabilia, non-sport cards, and Americana. Further information and complete auction results are available online at www.RobertEdwardAuctions.com

Copies of the 750-page full-color premium catalog are also still available free. Go to www.RobertEdwardAuctions.com, click “Free Catalog,” and fill in your name and address. Robert Edward Auctions is currently assembling its next sale. For further information contact: Robert Edward Auctions, PO Box 7256, Watchung, NJ or call (908)-226-9900.

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Robert Edward Auctions, LLC is a one of the world’s leading specialty auction houses, devoted exclusively to the sale of rare baseball cards, memorabilia, and Americana.

 

 


REA’s $9.5 Million Baseball Card Auction Sets Countless Records!!!

1910 Joe Jackson Card Sells For Record $200,000; Lou Gehrig Jersey $329,000; T206 Wagner hammered down at $188,000; Countless Baseball Card Auction Records Shattered At REA!!!

2010_catalogsWatchung, New Jersey. The strength of the high-end baseball card and memorabilia market amazed collectors at Robert Edward’s record-setting May 7, 2011 auction. An astounding 179 lots sold for $10,000 or more. Collectors, dealers, and market watchers look to REA’s annual event as the key barometer of the health of the market and the most important auction event of the year. According to REA president Robert Lifson, “The market was extremely strong. If everything went perfect we were expecting the total to be maybe $7 million to $8 million. The results came in at $9.5 million. That about says it all.” The secret? ”Great material, care in cataloguing, the biggest circulation, extensive research and authentication, the well-deserved confidence of buyers, and an emphasis on the integrity of the auction process. It’s a powerful combination.” By any measure, this was one of the most successful auctions in the history of collecting. “It was also the smoothest running auction in all respects, including collecting the money. You’d think that there would be a few delays here and there in collecting money and getting it in the hands of consignors when you’re talking about $9.5 million dollars. There weren’t. That’s another extremely strong area for REA. All consignors were paid in full, 100 cents on the dollar with no adjustments due to nonpaying bidders, and in record time. That’s the standard we strive for and achieve at REA when it comes to paying consignors. Perfection. Consignors really appreciate getting paid 100 cents on the dollar.”

The stunning prices on all nineteenth and early twentieth century baseball cards and memorabilia precisely totaled a staggering $9.532 million dollars across 1743 lots. The average lot sold for $5,472. The Lou Gehrig jersey and the Lou Gehrig bat selling for $329,000 and $176,250 respectively - both records for these items- paced the memorabilia offerings. The bat was a personal gift from Gehrig to his neighbor. “This was the best Gehrig bat we’ve ever seen. Because of the provenance, it doesn’t get any better.” The bat last sold at auction eleven years ago for $50,000. “That was a record price in 2000, and $176,250 is a record price in 2011. It may be a long time before we see this bat again. When we do, my guess is it will be a lot higher still. This is an incredible bat.” The bat was not the only Gehrig item of special note in the auction. “The Lou Gehrig jersey was also particularly exciting. It had previously sold so recently - just two years ago - for $240,000, and usually when unique big-ticket items are offered again so soon they sell for a lot less. That’s to be expected. It’s the nature of markets and collectibles. Add to this the fact that the jersey was reevaluated and graded at a lower level in the current auction than its 2009 sale elsewhere, in addition to attempts by adversaries to create additional controversy - trying to put a negative spin on our authentication analysis and even questioning the authenticity of the jersey itself - and it wouldn’t have been surprising if it sold for a significant discount. The consignor certainly expected to take a big hit. But that’s not what happened! REA’s online presentation and analysis of photographs of Gehrig - photos in which he is wearing this very jersey - really made a difference. People could see for themselves this was really Gehrig’s jersey and he was wearing it. Instead of selling for less than in 2009 elsewhere, the jersey sold for $89,000 more at REA in 2011. And this was with the jersey graded a “7″ instead of a “9″ (on a scale of “1 to 10″ primarily for condition)!”

lot-1Vintage Cards Prices Soar At REA: REA is first and foremost a baseball card auction, so it is not surprising that the big money, as usual, was in the cards: The T206 Wagner (reserve $25,000) proved once again that it can always be counted on to sell for well into six figures in any grade. In this case, a restored example sold for $188,000. And not just the T206 Wagner but all things related to the famous T206 set were very strong. The T206 Eddie Plank in Very Good to Excellent condition (reserve $10,000; estimate $25,000+) sold for $94,000, a new record price for the grade. T206 Magie Error cards in VG and VG-EX condition realized $17,625 and $23,500 respectively. Even a second T206 Plank, heavily trimmed and encapsulated as “Authentic”, sold for a remarkable $41,125. ”Interest in this card was helped by its rare back. Almost all Planks have Sweet Caporal backs. The Piedmont back made this example very special. For T206 collectors, especially as interest in backs is growing like wildfire, this card is a big deal in any grade. It also happened to be a nice looking card. The bigger message is simply that while we’ve always known that interest in all things related to the T206 set is huge, it’s growing!” REA speculates that the unusual cut of the trimmed Plank may actually be related to the rarity of the card. “All of the few known Planks with Piedmont backs appear to have unusual cuts.”

The offering of an extremely rare T206 Brown Lennox back example, missing from virtually all advanced collections, did not go unnoticed. “This was the first example we have ever offered, let alone in Excellent condition,” notes REA president Robert Lifson. “We had no idea what to expect.” Neither did anyone else. With a reserve of $1,000 and an estimate of “open” (indicating that not enough historical pricing information was available to allow REA to provide a meaningful estimate), a frenzy of bidding sent this extreme T206 rarity to the stratosphere with a final selling price of $29,375. “The buyer’s still recovering. But we think he’ll be OK. Seriously, the buyer has no regrets and is very happy. We can understand why. In forty years, this is the only Brown Lenox example we have ever even seen, let alone offered; it is the highest grade example known; and no T206 advertising back collection is complete without one. The price may seem crazy but that’s what they said about Wagners and Planks and Ty Cobb with Ty Cobb backs years ago. Anything related to the T206 set will always be important. It may be another 40 years before we see another.”

The T210 Old Mill of Joe Jackson (reserve $25,000; est. $50,000+), which has been gaining in stature for years, crushed all previous sales, setting a new all-time record auction selling price at $200,000. A 1933 Goudey #106 Nap Lajoie (PSA 8 NM-MT), universally recognized as one of card collecting’s most desirable rarities, realized $52,875. This very card had been purchased by the consignor just months earlier (November 2010) at auction elsewhere for $43,880. “He may have just gotten a good buy,” notes REA president Robert Lifson, “but for such a high profile card to sell for over 20% more in such a short time, this suggests that the market may just be getting stronger, especially for the most classic marquee cards. Consignors across the board were very happy but it’s naturally a very tall order to surprise them with stronger-than-expected results on big ticket items that have sold so recently elsewhere.”

lot-3The 1886 Kalamazoo Bats of Jim O’Rourke had not seen the light of day since it was purchased by the consignor in 1991 for $6,050 at the famous Jim Copeland Sotheby’s auction. It realized $58,750, setting an all-time record price for this classic nineteenth-century card. “Interesting background story on this card” notes REA’s Robert Lifson. “The consignor was not a nineteenth-century card collector. He was a Mickey Mantle collector. When he consigned his cards to REA, he pulled this card out and we were very surprised. We asked how it came to be that he had this incredible card? He explained that in 1991 he wandered into the preview of the Copeland auction at Sotheby’s in New York. He happened to see this card, liked it, and on a lark decided to buy it at the auction.” He had never bought a pre-1900 card before or since and it sat in a drawer with his original receipt for the next twenty years. Lifson adds, “He was very pleased with the auction result.”

Additional extraordinary highlights: Jake Daubert’s 1919 Cincinnati Reds World Series championship pin consigned directly from Jake Daubert’s granddaughter sold for an astounding $94,000. The only other 1919 World Series championship pin known to exist in private hands that has ever been auctioned was the one presented to third baseman Heinie Groh. His family sold his award decades ago. Like many of the baseball-collecting world’s greatest treasures, it wound up in the legendary Barry Halper Collection. Buried in a mountain of rare and valuable items in the 1999 Barry Halper Collection auction conducted by Sotheby’s, it sold for $17,250 at that time.

A newly-discovered E90-1 American Caramel card of Joe Jackson, found in a small collection consigned by a non-collector, sold for an impressive $32,312. An extraordinary near-complete set of 1910 T210 Old Mill tobacco cards was broken into nine lots and realized $107,512. The most comprehensive collection of Zeenut PCL candy cards that REA has ever offered was presented in forty lots and realized an astounding total of $232,297. The complete set run 1909-1911 Obak Tobacco cards, offered by set, also set auction records, selling for a total of $79,125. “These were special sets, by far the best we’ve ever seen” notes REA’s Lifson. “Because of their strong condition, they deserved to set records. These came from the collection of legendary pioneer collector Jack Pollard, one of the all time greats in the field. I have no idea where he got them but it was great to see that all three sets were won by the same person and will remain together.”

Additional Highlights:

lot-4A newly-discovered variation of the 1889 E.R. Williams playing card set (res. $5,000) generated a tremendous amount of bidder interest. Collectors recognized its significance, rarity, and the fact that it is unlikely that another set will ever surface. The set surfaced for the first time at another auction in November 2010 and was purchased by REA’s consignor for $10,000. Consigned to REA, it soared to $70,500. Lifson comments: “We knew the consignor got a great deal but we’re only talking about it selling for $10,000 a few months earlier. It was obviously overlooked when it first came up, and I think we made an impressive presentation of explaining the enormous significance of the set that obviously resonated with collectors. Our consignor was thrilled. He says he owes us dinner. But we think the buyer did pretty well too. The cards really are that special. It was exciting to present all the information on the set in the ideal way and see that the most advanced collectors in the field agree and respond. Results like this, when we can shine a light on the great significance of items that have been or might be overlooked, and help their true value be realized, that’s when we know we’ve done our job right. We’ve earned our keep. We’re taking the dinner!”

The Louisiana Find: One of the most exciting vintage card finds in modern times was represented by “The Louisiana Find”. When this collection of 1910 era tobacco cards from a noncollecting Louisiana family “walked in” to the Full Count Vintage Baseball Card Forum, it nearly caused a riot, and with good reason. Even though there were only 94 cards, all were rarities. Most important, the collection was highlighted by eight T207 Brown Background cards with Red Cross tobacco advertising backs, which all alone would qualify the collection for legendary status. Previous to this find, a total of only five examples were known to exist. Reminiscent of perhaps the greatest “cyberfind” of all time, Net54 Vintage Card message forum’s “Skydash” find of Colgan’s Chips including Joe Jackson and Jim Thorpe in 2007, “The Louisiana Find” was a small but very significant offering that was also an exciting drama for serious hobbyists to watch unfold. The importance of the small collection generated much speculation about its final selling price. Key rarity highlight T207 Lowdermilk with Red Cross back all alone sold for $21,150. The 94 cards sold for a total of $86,715.

lot-807Additional highlights: An extremely high grade 1948-1949 Leaf set was broken up by condition into seven lots and sold for an astounding $103,870, including $29,375 for the classic key card #8 Satchel Paige (PSA NM 7). An extraordinarily high grade 1954 Stahl-Meyer Meats card of Mickey Mantle (graded PSA 7 NM) generated tremendous interest and sold for a well-deserved record price for this modern classic at $23,500. The 1952 Topps Mickey Mantle is a classic that collectors aggressively bid on in every grade. Two EX+ 1952 Topps #311 Mantle examples realized $16,450 and $22,325 respectively (the higher selling example was cited by REA as being a particularly strong example for the grade) and a PSA 7 NM example sold for $32,312, all exceptional prices but at the same time illustrating the enormous impact of condition on value on this iconic card in even a fairly tight condition range. All high-grade complete sets sold very strongly. Examples include: 1952 Topps ranging from Vg-Ex to Nr/Mt (res. $10,000) sold for $44,062; 1956 Topps Complete PSA-Graded Set (8.03 GPA): #12 PSA Registry Set (reserve $10,000, estimate $20,000/30,000+) realized $44,062; and the 1968 Topps Complete PSA-Graded Set (9.26 GPA): #3 PSA Registry sold for $38,187.

Additional significant auction highlights: A 1933 Goudey #149 Babe Ruth in NM-MT condition (res. $5,000; est. $10,000/$20,000) realized $21,150. The always popular 1933 Sport Kings #2 Babe Ruth in NM condition (res. $2,500; est. $5,000+) sold for $9,400. Several 24-card 1933 Goudey uncut sheets were offered including one featuring the #181 Babe Ruth card (res. $5,000) that realized $23,500 and a 1933 Canadian Goudey “Triple Ruth” sheet (res. $10,000) that sold for $32,312. Two 1934 Goudey uncut sheets with Lou Gehrig, one featuring the twenty-four cards numbered from #25 to #48, the other featuring cards numbered from #49 to #72 (each with a reserve of $5,000) realized $18,800 and $32,312 respectively. The 1940 Play Ball: #2 PSA Registry Set (res. $10,000; est. $20,000/$40,000), by far the highest grade set of this classic gum card issue ever seen or offered by REA, sold for $44,062.

REA Statistics: Record prices were set on countless items, both in cards and memorabilia, and spanning all eras. The 1743 lots, offered on behalf of 317 different consignors, were won by an incredible 648 different bidders, illustrating the power of the marketing and auction process, and the breadth of bidder interest. Successful bidders included some of the nation’s most prestigious museums, universities, and corporate institutional collections, as well as representatives from numerous Major League teams. “All areas of the auction received a tremendous response and very strong prices. Nineteenth-century baseball items were unbelievable, as always, as were all early baseball cards, advertising and display pieces, graded cards, Babe Ruth items, autographs, memorabilia, non-sport cards and artwork.” Thousands of bidders from all over the world participated. Exactly 25,638 bids were placed and more than 99% of the lots sold (all but two). The average lot sold for $5,472 and on average realized more than double the high-end estimate.

Additional Auction Highlights:

lot-42Nineteenth-century cards and memorabilia were extremely strong, setting record after record, as is always the case at REA. The newly-discovered 1876 Hartford Blues CDV team card with Candy Cummings (purchased by the consignor at a local auction for just a few hundred dollars before being consigned to the REA auction) sold for an incredible $18,800. The 1886 Kalamazoo Bats New York Mets portrait card of Jim Donahue in VG condition sold for an extremely impressive $8,812, setting an auction record for this rarity (for an auction that did not involve shill bidding by the owner of the card against a “secret” left upto bid). An even higher grade Kalamazoo Bats New York Mets player portrait card of Jack Lynch in Excellent condition realized a record $15,275. The N690 Kalamazoo Bats New York player portrait card of Hall of Famer Roger Connor naturally sold for even more. In Good condition, this gem sold for an incredible record $44,062 (more than twice the previous high auction price realized for a different example of this card set elsewhere at $21,510 in November 2010).

An extraordinary 1859 Unions vs Excelsiors Trophy ball (res. $5,000; est. $10,000+) - one of the earliest ever seen - soared to $23,500. An N173 1888 Old Judge cabinet card of Hall of Famer Buck Ewing in EX-NR/MT condition (res. $1,500; est. $3,000-$5,000), saved in the family of a noncollector who had no idea of its great value, was hammered down for a record $17,625. An N173 1888 Old Judge cabinet card of Hall of Famer Mike “King” Kelly from the very same collection (res. $2,000; est. $4,000/$6,000) sold for an equally impressive $16,450. The small N172 1886-1888 Old Judge cards offered also generated extremely spirited bidding: High grade examples of Hall of Famers Ed Delahanty (res. $1,000; est. $2,000/$4,000) and Charles Comiskey (res. $1,000; est. $2,000/$3,000) realized $8,225 and $7,050 respectively, while a NM-MT N172 Old Judge example of Mickey Welch (res. $2,500) soared to $11,750. An N300 1895 Mayo’s Cut Plug tobacco card of Hall of Famer Kid Nichols in NM-MT condition (res. $5,000) realized $16,450.

A very unusual 1866 Team Cabinet Photo featuring the Washington and Brooklyn Teams with Henry Chadwick (res. $2,500) was purchased by REA’s consignor at another auction in August 2006 for $7,375. Additional research by REA, a different audience at REA, and perhaps a different marketplace, resulted in a well-deserved final selling price of $21,150, approximately three times its previous auction selling price. Robert Edward Auctions is a magnet for previously unoffered items. The 1869 Cincinnati Red Stockings CDV (res. $5,000) was another exciting noncollector family find presented in the auction. Fortunately saved for decades in a drawer, this gem was highly prized by advanced collectors, as expected, and sold for $32,312. An 1869 Cincinnati Red Stockings trade card featuring an advertisement on the reverse for Peck & Snyder Sporting Goods was another extremely significant highlight. One of card collecting’s all-time classics, this example realized $35,250. A small but exciting newly-discovered collection of 1887-1889 N172 Old Judges, consisting of 69 cards with minor back damage, once again illustrated that technical grades take a distant back seat among sophisticated collectors in valuing classic nineteenth-century baseball cards. With a reserve of $2,500 and an estimate of $5,000+, the lot soared in late bidding to $26,437.

Autographs: One of the best of the few Joe Jackson signed documents in existence (res. $25,000) sold for a record $64,625. The 1916 signed voucher, which resembles a check, was especially noteworthy for its impeccable provenance, originating 20+ years ago directly from Joe Jackson’s sister, Gertrude. A rarely seen autographed 1952 Topps Mickey Mantle, saved by REA’s consignor as a youngster in 1952 and personally signed for him years later (res. $5,000; est. $10,000+), realized $22,325. A strong selection of signed baseballs included: An exceptional Jimmy Foxx single-signed ball (res. $2,500) sold for $26,747. A 1939 Babe Ruth single on a “Home Run Special” baseball (res. $4,000; est. $8,000+) had been saved by the original owner since childhood, the family almost sold outright to a dealer at the National Convention for $9,000 but decided to take their chances at auction. They were glad they did. The ball sold for $16,450. An ideal 1955 Dodgers ball realized an amazing $21,150. REA officials note: “The very best single and team-signed balls consistently bring incredible prices. With team balls, the difference in value between an ideal example and one with a few signatures missing or with even a single clubhouse signature can be enormous. Ideal examples are few and far between but when offered clearly bring a tremendous premium.” Nowhere can this be seen more strongly than the simply astounding auction result of the extraordinary high-grade 1977 Yankees team-signed ball with 34 signatures. Offered as Lot #1128 with a reserve of $200 and an estimate of $500+, this 1977 Yankees team ball sold for an astonishing $22,325, setting a record not just for a team signed ball dating from the 1970s but for any post-1961 team-signed ball as well. “It wasn’t just two crazy bidders going back and forth,” note REA auction officials. “The top three bids were by three different very advanced collectors.”

lot-629Game-Used Bats: A 1921-1928 Ty Cobb bat (res. $5,000) realized $38,187; a 1925-1931 Babe Ruth bat (res. $5,000) sold for $32,312; a particularly outstanding 1966 Mickey Mantle bat with provenance that had not previously been seen in the marketplace (res. $5,000; est. $10,000+) was hotly contested, finally being hammered down at $35,250. Two 1955-1960 Ted Williams bats realized $21,150 and $23,500 respectively. A game-used 1938 Hank Greenberg bat by far set a new record at $22,325. The last 1938-era Hank Greenberg bat to hit the market, for comparison, was sold at auction elsewhere in November 2010 at $7,767. To paraphrase his famous quote about a popular restaurant (”No one eats there anymore. It’s too crowded.”), Yogi Berra might say about the next bat: “No one bids at auctions anymore. The prices are just too high.” His 1951 All-Star bat sold for a remarkable record $32,312, smashing all previous Berra bat sales, tripling the previous highest auction price. We can practically hear Yogi saying “I always thought that record would stand until it was broken.” Yogi might be correct on this one for a while at least. It may be a long time before this record is broken.

Baseball Contracts: The most advanced collection of Major League contracts of Hall of Famers to ever come to auction was a significant highlight. In total, the collection realized $196,225. Christy Mathewson’s 1902 contract (res. $5,000; est. $10,000+) sold for $41,125. Other highlights included contracts of nineteenth-century Hall of Famer Jim O’Rourke (res. $5,000) which sold for $17,625; and Rogers Hornsby’s 1921 contract (res. $1,000; $2,000/$4,000) was hammered down at $10,575. Whitey Ford’s 1950 rookie contract (res. $1,000; est. $2,500+) and Roberto Clemente’s for the 1962 season (res. $2,500) sold for $9,400 and $14,100 respectively.

Game-Used Jerseys: Minor League jerseys don’t usually sell for big money, but the auction proved there can be exceptions: Willie Mays’ 1951 Minneapolis Millers Home jersey (res. $10,000; est. $25,000+) sold for $44,062. This jersey dates from the dawn of Mays’ career and its enormous historical significance could not be overstated. As the REA catalog description notes, “Mays was one of the most important pioneers in the integration of the Major Leagues, one of the few great stars chosen to bridge the gap between the Negro Leagues and the Major Leagues, in the process experiencing great hardship but paving the way for his own great career and that of the others who followed.” Other significant jerseys included: 1963 Harman Killebrew Minnesota Twins Game-Used Road Jersey (res. $2,500; est. $5,000+) which soared to a final selling price of $22,325; and from the modern era a 2006 Derek Jeter New York Yankees signed game-used road jersey with Steiner Sports provenance (res. $2,500) which sold for $9,987. “With good reason, collectors are rarely comfortable spending big money on modern jerseys. There are so many fakes. But the Steiner provenance made all the difference on the Jeter jersey,” note REA officials. “Collectors know that Steiner performs an incredible service. The Steiner name is gold. Derek Jeter really wore this jersey.”

lot-488Additional Vintage Card highlights: An extremely impressive near-complete collection of T209 Contentnea Cigarette cards near-set (reserve $10,000) sold for $44,062. A collection of 35 1927 York Caramel cards (res. $2,500; est. $5,000+) consigned by a noncollector sold for an amazing $22,325. A rare T204 Ramly Tobacco “square border” variation card of Hall of Famer Jesse Burkett in VG-EX condition was the highlight of yet another noncollector family’s keepsakes (res. $2,500), and sold for $15,275. A 1911 D304 Brunners Bread set in various grades also sold for $22,325, while a high-grade Frank Baker card with a rare Martens Bakery back from the same set sold for $8,225 all alone. A T206 Cobb Green Background in Ex-Mt condition (res. $1,500; est. $3,000/$5,000) realized $10,575; a T206 of common player Francis Pfeffer graded NM-MT 8 by PSA with an SMR value of $865 (res. $300; est. $500+), sold for $3,525; a T206 of Clark Griffith with a rare Drum Cigarettes advertising reverse (res. $1,000; est. $2,000+) sold for $12,925; a T206 Red Background portrait of Cobb in PSA 8 NM-MT condition (res. $5,000; est. $10,000+) was hammered down at $18,800. The 50-card T201 Mecca Double Folders set (res. $10,000, est. $20,000/$30,000), all graded and encapsulated by PSA and with an average grade 7.77, sold for an impressive $44,062. A collection of 1915 Cracker Jack cards that were saved by the family of the original owner were especially appreciated by bidders, in part for their original owner provenance. The 154 cards, almost all in Vg to Vg-Ex condition, were presented in six lots. The family investigated the value of the cards in 1975. At the time they were worth $1,300 and they decided to hold off selling. The REA auction proved this was a wise decision. The 154 cards realized a total of $41,947. Cracker Jack cards in higher grades can sell for considerably more, of course: a 1915 Cracker Jack of Ty Cobb in Near Mint to Mint condition (res. $5,000; est. $10,000/$15,000+) all alone realized $21,150. A 1910 era scrapbook saved for 100 years and including an E90-1 American Caramel rookie card of Joe Jackson was offered by the family of the original collector. They were shocked to learn the album had tremendous value. With a reserve of $2,500 the album generated enormous interest and exceeded all expectations, finally selling for an extraordinary $35,250.

More Memorabilia Highlights: The only known complete set of five giant 1928 Lucky Strike tobacco large-format advertising signs featuring baseball players was a very significant highlight. These signs were miraculously unearthed during a house renovation in Walla Walla, Washington, where they had been serving as insulation within one of the walls of the house being renovated. They sold for $35,250. Not bad for insulation! A panoramic photograph capturing the members of the Kansas City Monarchs, champions of the Negro National League, and the Hilldale Daisies, champions of the Eastern Colored League, posing at the 1924 Negro League World Series was offered with a reserve of $2,500. This extraordinary image sold for a record $29,375. A magnificently decorated baseball personally used by pitching legend Christy Mathewson on October 3, 1904 in a game at the Polo Grounds in which Mathewson made baseball history by striking out a
then-record sixteen batters had been prized family keepsake of the Campell family for 107 years. In 2011 the Campbell family decided the ball might be more at home in the hands of a serious collector and proceeded to investigate where to best sell this type of item. They finally decided to send it to auction at REA. Nothing could have prepared them for the enthusiastic reception this exciting and unique relic would elicit. With a reserve of $2,000, this treasure from the deadball era sold for $44,625.

A rarely seen 1918 World Series program (res. $2,500), another recently discovered gem, realized a record $23,500.The 1914 Boston “Miracle” Braves World Series ring of Hall of Famer Johnny Evers, of all the more special note having been consigned directly by the Evers family, realized $52,875. The Harry S. Truman signed Ceremonial First-Pitch Baseball to open the 1950 season, originating from the personal collection of the Senators’ Eddie Robinson and including photos of Robinson posing with the President and the ball, was another tremendous memorabilia highlight. The bidding started at $2,000. When the dust cleared, the final selling price was $29,375.

Other sports and Non-Sports:

lot-1The auction also included an impressive selection of items from other sports, Americana, nonsport cards, and original card artwork, all of which sold extremely strong, including: The #3 PSA Registry set of 1955 Topps All-American was presented in six lots and realized an extraordinary total of $43,357. The 1948 Leaf Boxing “master set” (98 cards, including both gray and white back variations) sold for an impressive $12,925. But even more incredible was the discovery and offering from the same collection of the 1948 Leaf #50 Rocky Graziano, boxing card collecting’s most legendary rarity. Billed as “the 1948 Leaf Graziano that fell from the sky”, the consignor was the family of one of card collecting’s great pioneers (who passed away in 2009). They did not realize they had this card. They weren’t supposed to. REA didn’t realize they had the card either. Until REA cataloguers were shocked to find this card mixed in with in the common cards in the 1948 Leaf Boxing master set! With a reserve of $5,000 and an estimate of $10,000/$15,000, “the 1948 Leaf Graziano that fell from the sky” sold for an auction record $41,125. Similarly, an unopened box of 1956 Topps football cello cards was unexpectedly found mixed in among the baseball items in the estate of announcer Ron Menchine, legendary collector, historian, and last voice of the Washington Senators before moving to Texas after the 1971 season. Ron saved everything since he began collecting in the 1950s and had apparently bought this box in 1956 and just put it aside. The original cost was $3.60. The unopened box sold for $29,375.

The Jack Zugay Collection of Vintage Golf Cards, representing the finest collection of vintage golf trading cards to ever come to auction, included ten PSA #1 Registry sets and was presented in 25 lots. All 600+ cards in the Jack Zugay Collection were graded by PSA and included were many of the highest grade sets and singles known to exist. For golf card collectors, this was a very special and highly anticipated event, a fact that is easily seen in the final results: The 25 lots sold for an extraordinary total of $127,781, representing a remarkable average selling price of over $5,000 per lot.

The #1 PSA Registry set of 1971 Topps Football (res. $5,000; est. $10,000+) sold for an extraordinary $22,325. An exceptionally high-grade 1951-52 Parkhurst Hockey complete set minus one card (res. $10,000, est. $20,000+) sold for a remarkable $44,062. The original artwork to card #34 “Terror in the Railroad” in the 1963 Topps Mars Attacks set sold for $11,750, and the artworks to cards #7 “Destroying A Bridge” and #22 “Burning Cattle” were also offered and sold for $11,162 and $10,575 respectively (each with a reserve of $5,000). Even the display box for Mars Attacks cards sold for big money: with a reserve of $1,000, the box is not just a rarity but clearly a favorite with advanced nonsport collectors, selling for a remarkable $11,625. The 1940 Superman Gum, Inc. high numbers (#49-72) uncut sheet (res. $5,000) was another significant nonsport highlight. This sheet was purchased by the consignor in 1976, along with a second Superman sheet and a Lone Ranger sheet (sold last year in REA’s spring 2010 sale), for the total then-princely sum of $300, after hearing that they surfaced at an early Philadelphia card convention and tracking down the buyer. Ironically, the person he purchased the sheets was future REA president Robert Lifson, who was literally a kid at the time, reaching him by phone to do a deal (after school, of course). The one high-numbers Superman sheet all alone sold for $22,325.

Many other auction records were shattered for pre-1948 baseball cards, nineteenth-century baseball cards and memorabilia, non-sport cards, and Americana. Further information and complete auction results are available online at www.RobertEdwardAuctions.com

Copies of the 750-page full-color premium catalog are also still available free. Go to www.RobertEdwardAuctions.com, click “Free Catalog,” and fill in your name and address. Robert Edward Auctions is currently assembling its next sale. For further information contact: Robert Edward Auctions, PO Box 7256, Watchung, NJ or call (908)-226-9900.

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Robert Edward Auctions, LLC is a one of the world’s leading specialty auction houses, devoted exclusively to the sale of rare baseball cards, memorabilia, and Americana.

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For immediate release: June 10, 2010

Most Successful Baseball Card Auction in Collecting History Hits Ten Million Dollars at Robert Edward Auctions!

N172 Old Judge Card Sells For Record $129,250; 1911Turkey Red Set Sells For Record $246,750; T206 Wagner hammered down at $282,000; Countless Baseball Card Auction Records Shattered At REA!!!

Watchung, New Jersey. The strength of the high-end baseball card and memorabilia market amazed collectors at Robert Edward’s record-setting May 1, 2010 auction. An astounding 181 lots sold for $10,000 or more. The most anticipated baseball card and memorabilia auction in the world always generates great excitement and strong prices. Collectors, dealers, and market watchers look to REA’s annual event as the key barometer of the health of the market and the most important auction event of the year. According to REA president Robert Lifson, “The market was extremely strong. While common sense tells us that our market is not immune to problems in the larger economy, you’d never know it from the results. This was our most successful auction ever. More items sold for over $50,000 than ever before (twenty-eight lots), and more items sold for $100,000 or more than ever before (nine lots). It was also the smoothest running auction in all respects, including collecting the money. You’d think that there would be a few delays here and there in collecting money and getting it in the hands of consignors when you’re talking about ten million dollars. There weren’t. And all consignors were paid in full, 100 cents on the dollar with no adjustments due to nonpaying bidders, and in record time.”

The positive numbers and the facts speak for themselves: No auction in history has ever generated the dollar volume of this auction for vintage baseball card sales. By virtually every measure, despite economic pressures of the economy, the historic spring REA auction was the most successful baseball card auction in the history of collecting. The total $10.12 million in sales for the auction set a new world record for a multi-owner all-consignment baseball card and memorabilia auction. This total also represents a new world record for any multi-consignor auction in which the auction house, auction house executives, and employees are prohibited from bidding in the auction. In fact, the $10.12 million dollar auction total is also a new record dollar volume ever to be hammered down in a single day in the history of sports collecting. No other sports card or memorabilia auction in the history of the universe (except REA) has ever sold anywhere near this dollar volume in a single day. Even the number of catalogs shipped was a record!

The stunning prices on all nineteenth and early twentieth century baseball cards and memorabilia totaled a staggering $10.12 million dollars across 1720 lots. The average lot sold for $5,883. The T206 Wagner (reserve $50,000) in the lowest possible grade (PSA 1) sold for $282,000. This card was named “The Connecticut Wagner” because in 1985 it was purchased by the consignor at a card convention in Connecticut for the then-princely sum of $10,000 and its mysterious whereabouts (until unveiled in this auction) have been completely unknown in the organized collecting world for the past twenty-five years.

The big money, however, was not reserved only for the T206 Wagner, which can always be counted on to sell for well into six figures in any grade. The T3 Turkey Red set (reserve $50,000; est. $150,000+) cruised to a final record selling price of $246,750. “It deserved to” said REA president Robert Lifson. “It was the highest grade T3 set ever auctioned. It would be almost impossible to put that set together in that condition for any amount of money. When extraordinary quality is offered, it’s interesting to see the great number of big buyers that come out of the woodwork at REA. Millions of dollars in aggressive bids came in for high quality lots like this one. Some other collecting fields are having trouble selling big ticket lots. That is not the case at REA. We work hard all year long to make the auction a special event. Everyone knows the investment in time and energy and effort we put into the auction, and collectors know the job REA does. We only have one auction a year. It really is a special event. Collectors know it and respond.”

The 1886-1890 Old Judge Tobacco card of Cornelius Doyle, an obscure California League player who is an extreme rarity in the set, realized an incredible $129,250, setting an all-time record price for an Old Judge card anywhere EVER! For many, the highlight of the auction was the collection of the legendary Sy Berger, universally recognized as the “Father of the Modern Bubble-Gum Card”. Sy Berger was the face of Topps for over fifty years, and is one of the most important hobby industry pioneers in the history of collecting. The 1953 Topps original artworks from the Berger Collection, highlighted by the Satchel Paige artwork which realized $58,750, and other various souvenirs sold for a total of over three-hundred thousand dollars. As intended, this offering gave collectors on budgets large and small a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to have an item that once belonged to this collecting legend and cultural icon.

Additional extraordinary highlights and six-figure items: An uncut sheet of 1933 Goudey bubble gum cards with three Babe Ruths and a Lou Gehrig (reserve $25,000) sold for $117,500. The newly discovered 1889 Goodwin Round Album advertising poster, universally recognized as one of the baseball collecting world’s greatest display pieces, is one of only four examples known. The poster was consigned by a noncollecting family who saved it because they appreciated the graphics but had no idea of its great value. With a reserve of $25,000, it soared to a stunning final selling price of $105,750. An exceptional 1916 Babe Ruth Sporting News baseball card, the first card ever issued of Ruth as a Major Leaguer, in Near Mint condition, sold for record $82,250. An 1910 Old Mill Tobacco card of Joe Jackson (reserve $25,000), featuring the future Black Sox star when he was in the minor leagues long before being banned from baseball, realized an impressive $111,625. This very card was once owned by legendary collector Barry Halper. It has risen dramatically (over tenfold!) in value over the past ten years. In 1999 it was offered in the famous Halper auction where it sold at that time for $10,925. The 1903 World Series program, of special note both for its great rarity and for being from the very first game of the very first World Series, (reserve $25,000) realized $94,000. The bat Babe Ruth used to hit his 702nd homerun sold for a very healthy $111,625, setting a record for a Babe Ruth bat from the 1935 era due to its exceptional provenance and special historical significance. The famous T206 Ty Cobb with Ty Cobb Tobacco advertisement on the back card (reserve $10,000), which has always been revered as one of the key rarities of vintage card collecting, also far exceeded expectations, shattering the $100,000 mark for the first time ever at REA and selling for $111,625.

An extraordinary high-grade complete set of 1912 T207 Brown Background tobacco cards, all PSA graded, was broken down into 29 separate lots, and sold for a staggering total of $205,625. “The Merkle Ball” was another very special memorabilia auction highlight and a great privilege to offer for REA. This was the ball that cost the Giants the pennant in 1908! If only Fred Merkle had touched second base, everything would have been different…Unfortunately, he didn’t. The ball held by Chicago second baseman Johnny Evers when he touched second base, forcing Merkle out and changing the course of the 1908 pennant race for the New York Giants, changed hands in the May 2010 REA auction for record $76,375. In its last public appearance in 1993, “The Merkle Ball” was purchased at auction by actor Charlie Sheen at auction for $30,250.

“We have no control over exactly what comes to the marketplace for auction. Important collections and items usually come to auction due to unique life-changing circumstances,” notes REA president Robert Lifson. “Collectors pass away, people retire, they buy houses, children go to college, sometimes medical bills or even divorce are responsible. All things we have no control over. So we judge ourselves by the things that are in our control, just trying to do a great job in every way possible, from the moment we get an item in to the moment when the consignor is paid. That’s our goal. That’s what we do. Whatever the size of the auction, we know that if we do a great job, everything else will take care of itself. We can’t count on having ten million dollar auctions every year, because the material we sell is rare and we have no ability to come up with special material just because we’re having an auction. In 2007 it was an eight million dollar auction. This year it was a ten million dollar auction. Maybe next year it will be a five million dollar auction. We have no idea! But we do know that whatever material we have, it will be presented in the best way possible for collectors and for sellers.”

The REA results are extremely encouraging for all collectors and sellers, but REA’s Robert Lifson also wants collectors to recognize that while the overall market is strong, the market for any individual card or item can fluctuate. “There were many record prices, but it is also the case that the economy may have brought a few prices down to reality here and there. This is normal and healthy for any market, and in some cases may just be related not to the larger economy but to the internal forces of the vintage card and memorabilia market. If a relatively common card that in Excellent condition sells for $50, but has sold in the past for $5,000 just because it is in Mint condition, and now sells for $4,000, it’s down 20% from its peak. If you were the one who bought the card for $5,000 and sold it for $4,000, you’re not happy. You lost 20%. But if you paid a modest sum for it and sold it for $4,000, or saved it in a childhood collection and it happened to survive in Mint condition, you might not be able to believe your good fortune. $4,000 would seem like hitting the lottery! We see these scenarios all the time, sometimes on the very same cards and items in the same auction. In other words, two sellers of similar or identical items can receive the same price, and one can be disappointed because his card doesn’t sell for a record price, while the other seller is thrilled beyond words. Timing can be very important. Everything at REA sells for top dollar, but sometimes top dollar can change a little with time, depending on supply and demand, and what’s in fashion with collectors.”

The auction results at REA are widely recognized as providing the most important and respected snapshot of the vintage baseball card and memorabilia marketplace of the entire year. “We work really hard to make everything perfect and the real collectors and most serious buyers really appreciate what we do. The disclosure policies of the REA auction process, our focus on there being no conflicts of interest, the unparalleled confidence that bidders have in REA, all of these factors naturally contribute to strong results and the market’s confidence in these results,” explains Lifson. “The fact that REA combats shill bidding, and so many other common fraudulent industry practices, and the fact that we are activists against the fraud, crime, and corruption that plague the field, these are all elements that promote bidder confidence. We try to protect our bidders. Our customers never have to worry about the auction house or its employees bidding against them. And our prices are real. That may sound like an unnecessary statement, but in this field it isn’t. Our bid levels are real, and bidders know this. It makes a big difference. The most serious bidders can and do bid at REA with the ultimate confidence in the integrity of the auction process. It shows in the prices.”

Additional Highlights:

The T206 Eddie Plank, one of card collecting’s most legendary rarities, in Very Good condition (reserve $10,000) sold for $58,750. A lower grade T206 Plank example, in Good condition, but extremely attractive for the grade, sold for an almost as strong $49,937. The W600 Sporting News cabinet cards of Christy Mathewson (reserve $5,000) and Ty Cobb (reserve $1,500), each set records for these important rarities, selling for $35,250 and $38,188 respectively. The highest graded T206 Walter Johnson (reserve $10,000), graded Mint 9 by PSA, was hammered down for an extraordinary $55,813, also by far a record price in any grade for this classic 1910 era card. Nineteenth century cards were very strong, as always at REA. Two sizable collections of 1886-1890 Old Judges (each comprised of over 300 cards) sold for $82,250 and $94,000 respectively, while high-grade Hall of Famers such as Ed Delahanty ($16,450) and Kid Nichols ($15,275) sold for record prices individually.

A 1911 D304 Brunners Bread card of Ty Cobb, graded Near Mint to Mint by PSA sold for an exceptionally strong $94,000. An example of the famous 1933 Goudey #106 Lajoie, perhaps the most popular card of the 1930s, was also included in the sale. Always extremely valuable in any grade, this very attractive Ex-Mt example was from the Charlie Conlon Collection, and sold for $26,438. The T206 Walter Johnson with the Drum Cigarettes advertising back proved once again that all significant rarities associated with the famous T206 White Border set are always of great interest to collectors, especially important back rarities. This was the first Walter Johnson Drum back example that REA has ever offered. The reserve was $1,000. It did not go unnoticed. The final selling price was $38,187.

Additional significant auction highlights: One of the most interesting cards in the auction was the 1893 Just So Tobacco card of Buck Ewing, a particularly exciting recent discovery. Ewing was previously unknown to exist, though because the rare Just So Tobacco card set features only members of the 1893 Cleveland Spiders, and Ewing was on this team, collectors have long speculated that a card of him may have been issued. This card survived behind the walls of a house in Pennsylvania. Since approximately its year of issue in 1893, it had been nailed to a wood stud behind a plaster wall, where it had remained for decades until its accidental discovery. REA’s consignor discovered the card while doing some work remodeling the bathroom of his mother’s home, which had been built in the late nineteenth century and had been in the family since the 1920s. He began by tearing apart a plaster wall, creating holes in the process. When he looked inside the first hole in the wall with his flashlight to assess the situation, he was startled to see what appeared to be a small photo staring back at him, stuck to a crossbeam with an old square head nail. It was the Just So Tobacco card of Ewing! One important fact about baseball cards that is proven time and time again: Important rarities sell for big money in any condition. Despite the holes and being in Poor condition, the Ewing card sold for $17,625, more than paying for the home renovations, and adding a new player to the checklist of the extremely rare 1893 Just So Tobacco card set in the process.

More Highlights: The 1903 E107 Breisch-Williams Candy card of the legendary “Wee Willie” Keeler in Good condition realized $21,150; 1914 Cracker Jack #103 Joe Jackson in Vg-Ex condition (reserve $3,000) sold for $19,975; 1952 Topps #311 Mickey Mantle, graded EX-MT by PSA, sold for $19,975; Joe Jackson’s rookie card, issued in 1909 by the American Caramel Company and another one of card collecting’s great classics, was offered in PSA 5 EX condition and sold for a very impressive $44,063. A 1911 T205 Gold Border set (reserve $10,000) ranging in grade from Poor to Ex-Mt condition sold for $29,375; while an example of key T205 Gold Border rarity Hoblitzell “with no stats on reverse” variation card in EX-MT condition sold for $26,437 all alone! An uncut sheet of 1933 Goudey Gum Company cards including card #1 Benny Bengough (reserve $10,000) was another highlight, selling for $32,312. A complete set of 1921 E253 Oxford Confectionery: the #1 SGC Set (reserve $5,000, estimate $10,000+) sold for $26,437. A complete set of 1934-1936 Batter-Up Complete Set realized $29,375. The auction results of an impressive original “childhood” collection of 1930s bubble-gum cards, which has remained literally untouched since the 1930s and was saved by the family of the original owner, overwhelmed the consignors. Presented in twelve lots (one of which was just the wrappers that once held the cards!), the childhood collection sold for an incredible $118,381.

Modern rarities and complete sets were on fire: An extremely high grade 1957 Topps set sold for an astounding $76,375, an all-time record price for this set. The 1956 Topps Complete PSA-Graded NM-MT 8 Set: #11 PSA Set Registry (reserve $10,000, estimate $25,000+) sold for $41,125. The two cases of 1975 Topps “minis” (each of which originate from the legendary Charlie Conlon Collection) sold for $11,750 and $12,925 respectively. A 1972 Topps set in extraordinary high grade (including 173 GEM MINT cards) sold for $38,187, by far a record price for a 1972 Topps set at REA (and for any post-1970 Topps set).

Record prices were set on countless items, both in cards and memorabilia, and spanning all eras. The 1720 lots, offered on behalf of 276 different consignors, were won by an incredible 678 different bidders, illustrating the power of the marketing and auction process, and the breadth of bidder interest. Successful bidders included some of the nation’s most prestigious museums, universities, and corporate institutional collections, as well as representatives from numerous Major League teams. “All areas of the auction received a tremendous response and very strong prices. Nineteenth-century baseball items were unbelievable, as always, as were all early baseball cards, advertising and display pieces, graded cards, Babe Ruth items, autographs, memorabilia, non-sport cards and artwork.”

Thousands of bidders from all over the world participated. Exactly 24,716 bids were placed and more than 99% of the lots sold (all but four). The average lot sold for $5,883 and on average realized more than double the high-end estimate.

Notes REA president Robert Lifson, “Part of the great success of the auction, of course, is due to having great material, but part of this is also because all of the most serious collectors in the world are comfortable bidding at Robert Edward Auctions. Our Honest-Auto Bid system allows bidders to place limit bids and know that they are the only ones in the world that know their limit. The fact that we are truly an all-consignment auction, maybe the only one in the field, and the fact that we don’t allow auction house executives, employees, or the auction house itself to bid, is also very confidence-inspiring to serious bidders. Compared to some companies, Robert Edward Auctions is a small firm. But that’s actually part of our strength. We pay attention to details. We do everything better. No matter what criteria you have, we believe that we do the best job in the world for buyers and consignors. Our philosophy has always been very simple: If we do a great job, great things will happen. We don’t take any shortcuts in processing collections. Bidders have confidence in our expertise and opinions. We don’t own the material so we naturally have more credibility than auction houses that are also dealers. Our commitment to research and authentication is universally recognized as unparalleled. Our expertise in general is highly valued by bidders in a way that is very rare for an auction house. There are many collectors that only bid with us. It’s not an accident. We go out of our way to do a better job. It shows in the prices realized.”

The 1911 T211 Red Sun Tobacco Card Collection of 74 (out of 75 in the set) was another extraordinary auction highlight. The near-set carried a reserve of $5,000. The total Standard Catalog guide value on the set in the offered condition was less than $15,000. “We knew this was a special set. The T211 set is one of the rarest of all 1910 era card issues, and this was the largest collection to ever come to auction” notes REA president Robert Lifson. “This was the kind of set that collectors throw the guide books out the window when assessing. With special cards like these, only an auction can really give insight into true market value.” But there’s more to the story of the sale of this set. “The way the REA auction is run and closes ensures that lots go for what they’re really worth, and sell to the person who is really willing to pay the most. That’s what all auctions are supposed to do, but the way some auctions close lots, they often don’t accomplish this. REA always does. This isn’t just market theory. Our results prove it. This can be seen time and time again in REA’s auctions. The T211 Red Sun set is a prime example. A reasonable person would have thought that the bidding for this set was done at $25,000, which was the high bid on the morning of the day of the auction. No bids had come in for more than four days on this lot prior to the $25,000 bid, and that impressive level was almost double even the highest guide prices. But the unique REA auction process makes sure that the auction isn’t over until the high bidder on every lot is actually the bidder who is willing to pay the most for that lot, and that every bidder has the opportunity to move their money around from lots they have been out-bid on to other lots they might still have an interest in, without being shut out of the auction. This is great for bidders. This is great for consignors. The auction officially ended at exactly 3:53 AM the morning of May 2rd. In the final hours of the auction, just before the auction close, the T211 set was bid up from its already impressive hammer price of $25,000 to an even more incredible, simply unbelievable final selling price of $88,125. That’s a big difference. On top of that, in the remaining minutes of the auction that followed, the unsuccessful underbidder went on to move his funds to other lots that he might not have otherwise bid on, moving other expensive lots much higher. The winning T211 set bidder was able to add this set as a key addition to one of the most important and advanced collections in private hands. The consignor of this lot naturally made out much better, and the consignors of other lots also benefit. No other auction process could have delivered this result. And these same auction dynamics occur repeatedly at REA with other lots, large and small.”

Additional Auction Highlights:

Nineteenth-century cards and memorabilia were extremely strong, setting record after record, as is always the case at REA. The newly-discovered 1875 Hartford Blues CDV team card with Candy Cummings (purchased by the consignor on eBay for $200 just months before being consigned to the REA auction) sold for an incredible $17,625. The 1887 Red Stocking Cigar advertising trade card of Charles Radbourn (res. $5,000) was another exciting noncollector family find. Fortunately saved for decades in a drawer, this gem was highly prized by advanced collectors, as expected, and sold for $19,975. The 1887 Kalamazoo Bats tobacco card of Mays graded Fair by SGC realized $15,275.

Memorabilia was also extremely strong: Babe Ruth’s 1917-1920 era bat (once owned by Barry Halper) sold for $64,625; Ty Cobb’s bat dating from 1922-1924 realized $55,813; Lou Gehrig’s signed New York Yankees contract from 1938, his last full season (res. $5,000), set a record for the highest price ever realized for a player’s contract at REA, selling for $70,500. Al Kaline’s 1954 Tigers jersey was consigned by a former ballplayer who had a “cup of coffee” in the Tigers farm system in the 1950s. He was given then-recycled jersey to wear in spring training in 1956, and saved it as a souvenir of his playing days for over 50 years. The jersey sold for $21,115.

The Fred Tenney Collection, consigned directly by the Tenney family, was highlighted by a 1908 New York Giants uniform (reserve $5,000) which sold for $29,375. An extraordinary panoramic photograph of the American Negro Giants including the legendary Rube Foster was offered with a reserve of $5,000 and was hammered down for $35,250. A rarely seen 1905 World Series program, another recently discovered gem, sold for $16,450. The 1922 Giants World Series ring of Hall of Famer Ross Youngs, of all the more special note being the first year players were issued World Series rings, sold for $58,750. Autographs were particularly strong. This auction featured one of the most impressive personally collected single-owner signature collections ever offered by REA. Assembled by one of the pioneers of baseball autograph collecting and almost all obtained in person or through the mails in the 1950s and 1960s, the collection was broken down into 32 lots, and sold for a total of $110,625. Prices on rare single-signed baseballs (such as Harry Hooper; reserve $1,000; sold for $8,812) and signed photos (1928 Ruth-Gehrig photo; reserve $5,000; sold for $17,625) were also extremely strong. The 1943 autograph book assembled as a youngster by famous baseball author Donald Honig featuring the signatures of many Negro League stars including Josh Gibson, one of the rarest and most important of all Hall of Famer signatures, was recognized as extraordinary by many advanced collectors. But no one could have predicted the incredible battle for this HOF signature treasure. Opening with a reserve of just $1,000, the dust did not settle until the final price reached $32,312.

Other sports and Non-Sports:

The auction also included an impressive selection of select items from other sports, Americana, nonsport cards, and original card artwork, all of which sold extremely strong, including: A 1969-70 Gordie Howe Detroit Red Wings photo-matched jersey (reserve $10,000) realized $58,750. The 1968 Topps Test Basketball Complete PSA-Graded Set of 22 cards (reserve $5,000) sold for an extraordinary $29,375. An exceptionally high-grade 1949 Leaf Football complete set of 49 cards was hammered down at $23,500. The 1940 R145 Gum, Inc. Superman Complete Set (#2 PSA Registry) realized $32,312. The 1955 Topps “Rails and Sails” unopened wax box sold for a record $6,462. The original artwork to card #51 “Crushing The Martians” in the 1963 Topps Mars Attacks set, a popular card with strong graphics including Martians (reserve of $5,000) sold for $26,437. President Barack Obama’s car was by far the most unusual of the few Americana lots offered. The 2000 Jeep Grand Cherokee was consigned by an Illinois woman who bought the car used in 2004. When she bought it, the sales person told her to save all the documentation. “You never know, he could be President some day.” She’s been driving it ever since, but with over 130,000 miles on it, the jeep was approaching the end of its life as a reliable vehicle. It was time for a new car. Rather than trade it in, she contacted Robert Edward Auctions. REA decided to offer the car as a unique historical collectible, and to use the car as an opportunity to raise money for charity, donating all REA commissions to CARE. CARE, a leading humanitarian organization devoted to fighting global poverty, was chosen because of the great importance of its work and because President Barack Obama has personally expressed support for this charity. The minimum bid was The Kelly Blue Book value of $3,500. When the dust settled, the car sold for $26,437! The auctioning of the car (which was purchased by University Archives) has provided the consignor with $20,250, far exceeding expectations and more than enough to make a significant contribution toward the purchase of her next vehicle, while at the same time raising $6,137 for CARE.

Many other auction records were shattered for pre-1948 baseball cards, nineteenth-century baseball cards and memorabilia, non-sport cards, and Americana. Further information and complete auction results are available online at http://www.robertedwardauctions.com/

Copies of the 750-page full-color premium catalog are also still available free. Go to http://www.robertedwardauctions.com/, click “Free Catalog,” and fill in your name and address. Robert Edward Auctions is currently assembling its next sale. For further information contact: Robert Edward Auctions, PO Box 7256, Watchung, NJ or call (908)-226-9900.

###

Robert Edward Auctions, LLC is a one of the world’s leading specialty auction houses, devoted exclusively to the sale of rare baseball cards, memorabilia, and Americana.

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For immediate release: May 26, 2009

Baseball Card Auction Records Smashed At REA!

Wagner Sells For Record $400,000, Old Judge Collection sells for $211,000, T206 Doyle hammered down at $329,000, Countless Baseball Card Auction Records Shattered At REA!!!

Watchung, New Jersey. The strength of the high-end baseball card and memorabilia market shocked collectors at Robert Edward's record-setting May 2, 2009 auction. The most anticipated baseball card and memorabilia auction in the world always generates great excitement and strong prices. Collectors, dealers, and market watchers look to REA's annual event as the key barometer of the health of the market and the most important auction event of the year. According to REA president Robert Lifson, "The market was extremely strong as always at REA." That positive sentiment might be looked at by many as a great understatement. The numbers and the facts speak for themselves: No auction in history has ever generated the dollar volume of this auction for vintage baseball card sales. By virtually every measure, despite economic pressures of the larger economy, the historic spring REA auction was by far the most successful baseball card auction in the history of collecting. The vintage card market is alive and well!

The total $10.1 million in sales for the auction set a new world record for a multi-owner all-consignment baseball card and memorabilia auction. This total also represents a new world record for any multi-consignor auction in which the auction house, auction house executives, and employees are prohibited from bidding in the auction. In fact, the $10.1 million dollar auction total is also a new record dollar volume ever to be hammered down in a single day in the history of sports collecting, surpassing the previous record of $9.07 million set by REA in 2008. No other sports card or memorabilia auction in the history of the field has ever sold anywhere near this dollar volume in a single day. Even the number of catalogs shipped was a record!

The stunning across-the-board record final prices on all nineteenth and early twentieth century baseball cards and memorabilia totaled a staggering $10.1 million dollars across 1551 lots. The average lot sold for $6,545. The T206 Wagner (reserve $50,000) in the lowest possible grade (PSA 1) sold for $399,500, setting a world record for a Wagner (or any card ever) in this condition. This very card last sold at auction elsewhere for $78,000. This T206 Wagner is the very same card that was once owned by actor Charlie Sheen, who allowed the card to be displayed at the All Star Café in New York. In a plot worthy of a TV episode, in 1998 the card was stolen from its display case by workers at the All Star Café, and replaced with a copy! When the theft was discovered, the thieves were soon caught, and the Wagner card was recovered by the FBI. The T206 Wagner is extremely valuable in any condition. The previous world record price for a Wagner in this grade was also set by REA in 2008, when "The Beckett Wagner" sold for $317,250.

The T206 Doyle (reserve $25,000), one of the most important rarities of all vintage cards, cruised to a final record selling price of $329,000, shocking many collectors and surpassing by more than 500% the previous auction sale price of this legendary rarity. The last rare Doyle offered at auction sold for $64,099 in 2003. The T206 Plank in EX-MT condition (reserve $25,000) sold for $188,000, an astounding record price for this grade, and also more than five times the previous auction selling price elsewhere of this very card. The 1886-1890 Old Judge Tobacco Card Collection of 592 cards realized an incredible $211,500, shocking nineteenth-century collectors who expected these to sell at a far more modest level. The 1915 Cracker Jack Poster, which appeared on the REA catalog's cover, sold for $152,750, setting a record not just for all baseball card-related advertising posters from any era, but also for any 20th Century American product advertising poster of any kind.

Additional Extraordinary Highlights and Six-Figure Items: A complete set of 1909-1911 T206 White Border tobacco cards, all PSA-graded and averaging between Excellent and Ex-Mt condition (reserve $50,000), sold for $176,250. A complete set of 1952 Topps (reserve $50,000), also all PSA-graded, sold for $105,750. The collection of nine 1953-54 Briggs Meats two-card panels (reserve $5,000), which were issued with hot dogs and saved for decades by an old time Baltimore-area collector, was extremely hotly contested. "There was a lot of debate and even second-guessing of the auction house about whether this group should have been broken up or offered intact as a collection," according to REA officials. "This was such a special group, we just couldn't break them up. We thought that advanced collectors would appreciate them more if they were kept intact as a collection. We'll never see another group like this. They had to stay together." Advanced collectors agreed. The best group of this important rare regional issue to ever be offered at auction exceeded even the wildest estimates of market watchers, selling for an extraordinary $82,225.

The T206 Plank match to the famous Gretzky-McNall Wagner (reserve $10,000) was a favorite auction lot of many sophisticated collectors. It is one of only a few Planks with a Piedmont back and the only example surviving in a proof-like state. To many, the existence of this card had long been just a rumor. It's unveiling in this auction was a landmark event to many T206 and hobby scholars. This card was one of the great prizes in The Charlie Conlon Collection, where it quietly resided for the past twenty years. It sold for $111,625.

"We have no control over exactly what comes to the marketplace for auction. Important collections and items usually come to auction due to unique life-changing circumstances," notes REA president Robert Lifson. "Collectors pass away, people retire, they buy houses, children go to college, sometimes medical bills or even divorce are responsible. All things we have no control over. So we judge ourselves by the things that are in our control, just trying to do a great job in every way possible, from the moment we get an item in to the moment when the consignor is paid. That's our goal. That's what we do. Whatever the size of the auction, we know that if we do a great job, everything else will take care of itself. We can't count on having ten million dollar auctions every year, because the material we sell is rare and special and we have no ability to come up with special material just because we're having an auction, but for this auction, everything really fell into place. We really had the material this year." Prices at REA are traditionally always very strong, but there was concern that the larger forces of the economy would impact prices, especially for big-ticket items. "The financial crisis may have actually brought a few things to the marketplace that might have otherwise not been sold at this time. The surprising thing was that everyone was expecting the market to be softer, especially since prices have been lower elsewhere, but the exact opposite happened. Collectors really do come out of the woodwork for our auctions. The results speak for themselves."

The collection of legendary hobby icon Charlie Conlon all alone realized over $2 Million. The twenty-six original wax cases of 1975 Topps "Minis" from the Conlon estate generated a tremendous amount of excitement among collectors, and great speculation regarding exactly how well so many cases would be received offered all at once. Conlon was famous for cornering the market on unopened 1975 Topps "Mini" cases when they were first issued. "These cards were regionally issued in Michigan, right in Charlie's neighborhood," according to REA officials. "When Charlie realized that these cards were not available everywhere, and the fact that he could buy them locally represented a special opportunity, he went around buying all he could find. In time, they began to increase in value. He had been slowly selling them off for the past thirty years. These twenty-six cases were the last he had. They cost Charlie less than $1,000 in 1975. No one knew what would happen with such a large offering of cases. That's a huge supply. Nothing like this has ever happed before, but the interest was incredible." Competition was fierce. The twenty-six cases were offered in eight lots and sold for a total of $307,000.

An extraordinary find of unopened 1930s boxes and packs was only half-jokingly promoted by REA as "The Most Incredible Unopened Find in the History of the Universe!" These boxes and packs were saved by a candy and gum distributor as ordering samples, and had remained untouched and perfectly preserved on their product sample shelves for the past 70+ years, until just recently discovered. The family consigning this exciting find hoped that the total sales for the collection would approach $100,000. "Several days before the auction close, this figure had been reached, and they called REA to say they were already thrilled with the results, and that if the bidding went any higher, that would be great, but their expectations had already been exceeded," REA president Robert Lifson fondly recalls. When the dust settled on the final night of the auction, the total sales for the collection more than tripled to $336,343. "This was a once-in-a-lifetime offering. Collectors wanted to take something home from this find," adds Lifson. "When something is really special, that's when only an auction can do justice to material, both for buyers and sellers. This was that type of a collection."

The auction results at REA are widely recognized as providing the most important and respected snapshot of the vintage baseball card and memorabilia marketplace of the entire year. "We work really hard to make everything perfect and the real collectors and most serious buyers really appreciate what we do. The disclosure policies of the REA auction process, our focus on there being no conflicts of interest, the unparalleled confidence that bidders have in REA, all of these factors naturally contribute to strong results and the market's confidence in these results," explains Lifson. "The fact that that REA bidders don't have to worry about shill bidding, and so many other common fraudulent industry practices, and the fact that we are activists against the fraud, crime, and corruption that plague the field, these are all elements that promote bidder confidence. We try to protect our bidders. Our customers never have to worry about the auction house or its employees bidding against them. And our prices are real. That may sound like an unnecessary statement, but in this field it isn't. When we say that a Josh Gibson signed postcard sold for a world-record $81,200, or report any other incredible price, or bid level for bidders to contemplate topping during the auction, the results and bid levels are real, and bidders know this. It makes a big difference. The most serious bidders can and do bid at REA with the ultimate confidence in the integrity of the auction process. It shows in the prices."

Additional Highlights:

The 1914 Baltimore News Babe Ruth rookie card, one of card collecting's most legendary rarities, sold for $150,800 in poor condition, exactly matching the world record auction price for this iconic card in this condition previously set by REA. The R306 Butter Cream Confectionary of Babe Ruth, another new discovery and only the third example of this extreme rarity known, realized $55,812. The 1915 Cracker Jack of Christy Mathewson, graded MINT 9 by PSA, sold for an exceptionally strong $41,125. Two 1933 Goudey #106 Lajoies were included in the sale, one graded Near Mint, the other VG-EX, selling for $35,250 and $23,500, respectively. The T206 Cobb with the rare Red Hindu advertising back proved once again that all significant rarities associated with the famous T206 White Border set are always of great interest to collectors, especially important back rarities. This was the first Ty Cobb with Red Hindu back example that REA has ever offered. The reserve was $5,000. It did not go unnoticed. The final selling price was $38,187.

More significant auction highlights include: 1952 Topps #311 Mickey Mantle, graded EX-MT+ by PSA, sold for $29,375; 1916 Sporting News card of Babe Ruth in Excellent condition, his first card as a Major Leaguer, sold for $41,125, a record price for this important card in this condition. When just four low-grade 1910-era tobacco cards were found in the attic of a non-collecting family, they were shocked to learn that the T206 Eddie Plank card was one of the great treasures of baseball card collecting. As they noted in their communications with REA, they felt like they hit the lottery with this lucky find, but the incredibly strong auction result made them feel "like they hit the lottery twice!" Though only graded in Poor condition by PSA, because the card had a great story and great eye-appeal, it sold for an extraordinary $38,187, by far a record price for this rare card in this grade. Joe Jackson's rookie card, issued in 1909 by the American Caramel Company and another one of card collecting's great classics, was offered in PSA 3.5 VG+ condition and sold for a very impressive $23,500.

A 1911 T205 Gold Border set (reserve $10,000; est. $20,000/$30,000) ranging in grade from Poor to Ex-Mt condition sold for $41,125; a 1912 T207 Brown Background Near-Complete Set (191 of 200 cards) also ranging from Poor to Ex-Mt condition (reserve $10,000; estimate $25,000) realized $44,062; a near set of 1909-1911 E90-1 American Caramel (114 of 120 cards, missing several rarities including Joe Jackson) carried a reserve of $10,000 and realized an extremely impressive $47,000. A small group of six 1910 E93 Standard Caramel cards was submitted for auction ungraded and was so strong in condition that REA decided to send them all to PSA for grading. The cards ranged in grade from Ex-Mt to Near Mint+, which is very strong for caramel cards, and this no doubt played a role in propelling this small collection to their incredible $26,375 final selling price. An uncut sheet of 1933 Goudey Gum Company cards (reserve $10,000) sold for $29,375. A complete set of all six 1911 M110 Sporting Life cabinet cards, offered individually, sold for a total of $58,162.

More modern rarities also brought shocking prices. The 1967 Topps Test Stand-Up Collection of 12 cards (reserve $2,500, estimate $5,000+) was the subject of an all out bidding war among advanced collectors, finally selling for an extraordinary $41,125. The 1968 Topps 3-D PSA-Graded complete set (reserve $5,000, estimate $10,000+) had a card-by-card total SMR value of exactly $16,075. The final selling price: an astounding $41,125.

Record prices were set on countless items, both in cards and memorabilia, and spanning all eras. The 1551 lots, offered on behalf of 208 different consignors, were won by an incredible 630 different bidders, illustrating the power of the marketing and auction process, and the breadth of bidder interest. Successful bidders included some of the nation's most prestigious museums and corporate institutional collections, as well as representatives from numerous Major League teams. "We set record prices across the board" reports Lifson. "All areas of the auction received a tremendous response and very strong prices. Nineteenth-century baseball items were unbelievable, as always, as were all early baseball cards, advertising and display pieces, graded cards, Babe Ruth items, autographs, memorabilia, non-sport cards and artwork."

Thousands of bidders from all over the world participated. Exactly 23,369 bids were placed and more than 99% of the lots sold. The average lot sold for a record $6,545, and on average realized more than double the high-end estimate. "Prices were significantly higher than most consignors expected" according to REA president Robert Lifson. "Part of this, of course, is due to having great material, but part of this is also because all of the most serious collectors in the world are comfortable bidding at Robert Edward Auctions. Our Honest-Auto Bid system allows bidders to place limit bids and know that they are the only ones in the world that know their limit. The fact that we are truly an all-consignment auction, maybe the only one in the field, and the fact that we don't allow auction house executives, employees, or the auction house itself to bid, is also very confidence-inspiring to serious bidders. Compared to some companies, Robert Edward Auctions is a small firm. But that's actually part of our strength. We pay attention to details. We do everything better. No matter what criteria you have, we believe that we do the best job in the world for buyers and consignors. Our philosophy has always been very simple: If we do a great job, great things will happen. We don't take any shortcuts in processing collections. Bidders have confidence in our expertise and opinions. We don't own the material so we naturally have more credibility than dealers or auction houses that are also dealers. Our commitment to research and authentication is universally recognized as unparalleled. Our expertise in general is highly valued by bidders in a way that is very rare for an auction house. There are many collectors that only bid with us. It's not an accident. We go out of our way to do a better job. It shows in the prices realized."

The 1932 R300 George C. Miller Complete Set of 32 Cards, all graded by PSA, was another extraordinary auction highlight. In retrospect, this was one of the most exciting auction lots in the history of card collecting. The set carried a reserve of $10,000, and an estimate of $20,000/$30,000+. The total SMR guide value on the set was exactly $38,010. "We knew this was a special set. The George C. Miller set is one of the rarest of all 1930s card issues, and this was clearly one of the best sets in the world. Maybe the very best," notes REA president Robert Lifson. "This was the kind of set that collectors literally throw the guide books out the window when assessing. With special cards like these, only an auction can really give insight into true market value." But there's more to the story of the sale of this set. "The way the REA auction is run and closes ensures that lots go for what they're really worth, and sell to the person who is really willing to pay the most. That's what all auctions are supposed to do, but the way some auctions close lots, they often don't accomplish this. REA always does. This isn't just market theory. Our results prove it. This can be seen time and time again in REA's auctions. The R300 set is a prime example. A reasonable person would have thought that the bidding for this set was done at $85,000, which was the high bid at 7:13 AM on the morning of the day of the auction. No bids came in for more than twenty hours following this $85,000 bid, and that impressive level was more than double even the highest guide prices. But the unique REA auction process makes sure that the auction isn't over until the high bidder on every lot is actually the bidder who is willing to pay the most for that lot, and that every bidder has the opportunity to move their money around from lots they have been out-bid on to other lots they might still have an interest in, without being shut out of the auction. This is great for bidders. This is great for consignors. The auction officially Cended at exactly 3:47 AM the morning of May 3rd. In the nineteen minutes between 3:15 AM and 3:34 AM, just before the auction close, the R300 George C. Miller set was bid up from its already impressive hammer price of $85,000 to an even more incredible, simply unbelievable final selling price of $246,750. That's a big difference. On top of that, in the remaining minutes of the auction that followed, the unsuccessful underbidder went on to move his funds to other lots that he would not have otherwise bid on, moving other expensive lots much higher. The winning George C. Miller set bidder was able to add this set as a key addition to perhaps the most important and advanced collection in private hands. The consignor of this lot naturally made out much better, and the consignors of other lots also benefit. No other auction process could have delivered this result. And these same auction dynamics occur repeatedly at REA with other lots, large and small."

Additional Auction Highlights:

Nineteenth-Century Cards and Memorabilia were extremely strong, setting record after record, as is always the case at REA. The newly-discovered 1888 Old Judge batting pose of Tyng (res. $1,000) sold for $19,975, by far a record price for a non-Hall of Famer and non-PCL Old Judge card. The 1869 Cincinnati Red Stockings Peck & Snyder advertising trade card (res. $10,000) sold for $47,000. The 1886 N167 Old Judge of Buck Ewing in Good condition (reserve $5,000) sold for $26,437. The 1894 N142 Duke Cabinets of Ed Delahanty and Wilbert Robinson, each graded Good by SGC (and each with a reserve of $2,000) sold for record prices of $15,275 and $11,750, respectivley. The N172 Old Judge Cigarettes card of Jim O'Rourke, a particularly outstanding example graded MINT 9 by PSA, sold for $11,625. The 1887 Kalamazoo Bats tobacco card of Gillespie (reserve $5,000) graded Ex + by SGC realized $19,975.

Complete Sets Were on Fire: The 1956 Topps Complete PSA-Graded NM-MT 8 Set: #17 PSA Set Registry (reserve $10,00; estimate $25,000+) sold for $32,312; The 1957 Topps PSA-Graded Complete Set (407): #9 PSA Set Registry (reserve $15,000; estimate $40,000+) sold for $52,875; 1967 Topps PSA-Graded Complete Set: #8 PSA Set Registry (reserve $15,000; estimate $30,000+) sold for $41,125; the finest 1963 Topps set to ever come to auction was broken up smaller lots so that all the PSA 10s and low-population PSA 9s could be presented in the most ideal manner; the 1963 Topps set (#6 on the PSA Set Registry) realized an incredible total of $77,550. 1968 Topps Complete Set: #6 PSA Registry (reserve $10,000, estimate $20,000+) sold for $29,375. A 1952 Topps set (reserve $5,000; estimate $10,000/$20,000+), graded by PSA and varying in grade Vg to Nr/Mt, sold for an exceptionally strong $47,000.

Memorabilia Was Also Extremely Strong: Babe Ruth's 1932 cap sold for $99,875; Tom Seaver's 1967 Mets jersey sold for $47,000; Don Drysdale's 1963 home jersey (reserve $5,000) was perhaps the most shocking of all, selling for an incredible $55,812. Wilcy Moore's 1927 Yankees uniform sold for $44,062; The Val Picinich Collection, consigned directly by the Picinich family, was highlighted by a 1924 World Tour uniform (reserve $10,000) which sold for $35,250, and a 1921 Washington Senators uniform (reserve $2,000) which sold for $23,500; an extraordinary panoramic photograph of the American Negro Giants including the legendary Rube Foster was offered with a reserve of $5,000 and was hammered down for $22,325. Early World Series press pins, which have long been depressed in price, sold extremely strongly, including a record $8,225 for a 1919 Cincinnati Reds press pin. A 1919 World Series program at Chicago, for Game Three of the infamous "Black Sox" scandal, with a reserve of $2,000 sold for $23,525, another auction record. The 1922 World Series ring had never before sold for more than $15,000. According to REA's Robert Lifson, "This is a ring that has always been undervalued in our eyes, because this was the first year of the World Series ring. It was nice to finally see the market give this item the respect we always thought it deserved." The 1922 Giants World Series ring, presented to outfielder Ralph Shinners (reserve $2,500) sold for $58,750, by far setting a new auction record price for this important ring. A small but impressive collection of team-signed balls from the personal collection of a gentleman who was the bat boy for the Chicago Cubs from 1955 through 1958 was consigned to the auction directly by his daughter. The highlight of the collection was a remarkably high-grade 1955 Brooklyn Dodgers World Champions Team-Signed Ball (reserve $800, estimate $1,500/$2,500+). Collectors appreciated the condition, the authenticity (no "clubhouse" signatures), and the special provenance, which all combined to make this ball the single most popular item in the auction in terms of number of bids received, with 48 bids in total fielded by REA over the course of the auction in the battle for this prize. The ball sold for an extraordinary $32,312, setting an all-time auction record for any post-war team-signed ball.

Other Sports and Non-Sports:

The auction also included an impressive selection of select items from other sports, Americana, nonsport cards, and original card artwork, all of which sold extremely strong, including: A 1945 Don Hutson Green Bay Packers Game-Used Home Jersey (reserve $10,000), a birthday gift directly from Hutson to legendary NBA trainer Joe Proski when he was a youngster, sold for an impressive $70,500, tying the auction record for a football jersey set by REA in 2008. The 1962-63 Kahns Weiner basketball set of 13 cards (reserve $1,000) sold for an extraordinary $11,162. An extremely rare 1999 Augusta National Golf Club jacket, one of only a few "Masters Jacket" examples ever permitted to leave the grounds of the Augusta National Golf Club and be offered for sale without a legal or title issue, sold for $11,162. The 1933 R136 National Chicle "Sky Birds" Original Wax Box with 92 Unopened Packs (reserve $5,000), an unprecedented offering and one of the many highlights of the 1930s unopened find, sold for $47,000. The extremely strong PSA-graded 1959 Three Stooges set (reserve $2,000; estimate $4,000/$8,000+), with a total SMR value of $11,440, sold for $29,375. The original artwork to card #1 in the 1963 Topps Mars Attacks set (reserve $15,000) sold for an astounding $82,250, setting a record not just for any Mars Attacks original artwork ever sold (the previous record of $38,187 having been set at REA in 2004), but also setting a record for any nonsport gum card artwork ever sold at auction anywhere from any era.

Many other auction records were shattered for pre-1948 baseball cards, nineteenth-century baseball cards and memorabilia, non-sport cards, and Americana. Further information and complete auction results are available at our auction archive.

Copies of the 672-page full-color premium catalog are also still available free. Click here to request a free catalog and fill in name and address. Robert Edward Auctions is currently assembling its next sale. For further information contact: Robert Edward Auctions, PO Box 7256, Watchung, NJ or call (908)-226-9900.

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Robert Edward Auctions, LLC is a one of the world's leading specialty auction houses, devoted exclusively to the sale of rare baseball cards, memorabilia, and Americana.

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For immediate release: May 15, 2008

Babe Ruth Rookie Card Sells For Record $517,000, T206 Wagner Sells For Record $317,000, Countless Baseball Card Auction Records Shattered At Robert Edward Auctions!!!

$9.07 Million Sale Is Most Successful Multi-Consignor Baseball Auction In The History of Collecting

Watchung, New Jersey.  The economy may be on the ropes, but economic caution in the high-end baseball card and memorabilia market was nowhere in sight at Robert Edwards record-setting May 3, 2008 auction. The most anticipated baseball card and memorabilia auction in the world always generates great excitement and strong prices, but nothing could have prepared collectors, dealers, and market watchers for the shocking record prices at the spring REA auction, even in the midst of economic uncertainty and softer prices for rare and historic baseball items elsewhere.  

The stunning across-the-board record final prices on all nineteenth and early twentieth century baseball cards and memorabilia totaled a staggering $9.07 million dollars across 1670 lots. The 1914 Baltimore News Babe Ruth rookie card in Very Good condition sold for an astounding $517,000, more than twice its previous auction record price, and even more than the auction record price of the T206 Wagner in this same condition. In fact, this is the most any card has ever sold for in the history of the collecting world, outside of the famous Gretzky-McNall T206 Wagner. This auction also featured a T206 Honus Wagner. This iconic card, which is extremely valuable in any grade, was in the lowest grade possible (Poor condition) and sold for an astounding $317,250, by far a world record price. The previous T206 Wagner record for this grade was $192,000 in 2007. 

The record prices for the two most valuable baseball cards in the world were just the beginning. This was the single most successful baseball auction in the history of the collecting world, said REA president Robert Lifson. We have no control over exactly what comes to the marketplace for auction, so we judge ourselves by the things that are in our control, trying to do a great job in every way possible. But we really had the material this year. Prices at REA are traditionally always very strong, but there was concern that the larger forces of the economy would impact prices, especially for big-ticket items. Everyone was expecting the market to be softer, especially since prices have been lower elsewhere, but the exact opposite happened. The results speak for themselves. 

The 1889 Anson-Ewing Beer Poster, featuring two great nineteenth-century stars endorsing Burke Ale, sold for an astonishing $188,000, setting a record for a baseball-related advertising poster and a record for any American advertising poster featuring a product of any kind. The recently rediscovered 1862 Knickerbockers team photograph, discovered in late 2007 in the former home of Walter Avery (the last surviving Knickerbocker player), sold for $58,750, setting a record for an 1860s baseball photograph. The R306 Butter Cream Confectionary card of Babe Ruth (PSA VG-EX 4), one of card collectings most legendary rarities, and which was saved in the same family since 1933, joined the elite $100,000+ club, selling for a record $111,625. A complete set of 1909-1911 T206 White Border tobacco cards, all PSA-graded and averaging Excellent condition, sold for $176,250. The Nagy example of the famous T206 Ty Cobb with Ty Cobb back, graded Fair, sold for an incredible record price of $64,625. This very card was purchased at auction by the consignor for $28,970. He thought he was going to lose a few dollars because of the economy, said REA officials. Instead it sold for more than double what he paid. Thats a pretty big difference for such a major high-profile rarity. This is not an isolated incident. This happened all over the place in the auction.

The total $9.07 million in sales for the auction set a new world record for a multi-owner all-consignment baseball card and memorabilia auction. This total also represents a new world record for any multi-consignor auction in which the auction house, auction house executives, and employees are prohibited from bidding in the auction. In fact, the $9.07 million dollar auction total is also a new record dollar volume ever to be hammered down in a single day in the history of sports collecting, surpassing the previous record of $8.7 million set by REA in 2007. No other sports card or memorabilia auction in the history of the field has ever sold anywhere near this dollar volume in a single day. Even the number of catalogs shipped was a record!  

The auction results at REA are widely recognized as providing the most important and respected snapshot of the vintage baseball card and memorabilia marketplace of the entire year. We work really hard to make everything perfect and the real collectors and most serious buyers really appreciate what we do. The disclosure policies of the REA auction process, our focus on there being no conflicts of interest, the unparalleled confidence that bidders have in REA, all of these factors naturally contribute to strong results and the markets confidence in these results, explains Lifson. The fact that that REA bidders dont have to worry about shill bidding, and so many other common fraudulent industry practices, and the fact that we are activists against the fraud, crime, and corruption that plague the field, these are all elements that promote bidder confidence. We try to protect our bidders. Our bidders never have to worry about bidding on a fake T206 error card at REA. Our customers never have to worry about the auction house or its employees bidding against them. And our prices are real. That may sound like an unnecessary statement, but in this field it isnt. When we say that a Josh Gibson signed postcard sold for a world-record $81,200, or report any other incredible price, or bid level for bidders to contemplate topping during the auction, the results and bid levels are real, and bidders know this. It makes a big difference. The most serious bidders can and do bid at REA with the ultimate confidence in the integrity of the auction process. It shows in the prices.

That is an understatement. Record prices were set on countless items, both in cards and memorabilia, and spanning all eras. The extraordinary results leave no doubt that every item was sold to the person or institution that was willing to pay the most. The 1670 lots, offered on behalf of 249 different consignors, were won by an incredible 637 different bidders, illustrating the power of the marketing and auction process, and the breadth of bidder interest. Successful bidders included some of the nations most prestigious museums and corporate institutional collections, as well as representatives from numerous Major League teams. There was a tremendous amount of institutional bidder interest, maybe more than ever before. Museums were clearly adding to their collections. We obviously had some material that just happened to fit in to some important institutional collections. By any measure this was one of the most carefully assembled, important, and successful baseball card and memorabilia auctions in the history of collecting. We set record prices across the board reports Lifson. All areas of the auction received a tremendous response and very strong prices. Nineteenth-century baseball items were unbelievable, as always, as were all early baseball cards, advertising and display pieces, graded cards, Babe Ruth items, autographs, memorabilia, non-sport cards and artwork. 

Thousands of bidders from all over the world participated. Exactly 24,575 bids were placed and more than 99% of the lots sold. The average lot sold for $5,435, more than double the high-end estimate. Prices were significantly higher than most consignors expected according to REA president Robert Lifson. Part of this, of course, is due to having great material, but part of this is also because all of the most serious collectors in the world are comfortable bidding at Robert Edward Auctions. Our Honest-Auto Bid system allows bidders to place limit bids and know that they are the only ones in the world that know their limit. The fact that we are truly an all-consignment auction, maybe the only one in the field, and the fact that we dont allow auction house executives, employees, or the auction house itself to bid, is also very confidence-inspiring to serious bidders. Compared to some companies, Robert Edward Auctions is a small firm. But thats actually part of our strength. We pay attention to details. We do everything better. No matter what criteria you have, we believe that we do the best job in the world for buyers and consignors. Our philosophy has always been very simple: If we do a great job, great things will happen. We dont take any shortcuts in processing collections. Bidders have confidence in our expertise and opinions. We dont own the material so we naturally have more credibility than dealers or auction houses that are also dealers. Our commitment to research and authentication is universally recognized as unparalleled. Our expertise in general is highly valued by bidders in a way that is very rare for an auction house. There are many collectors that only bid with us. Its not an accident. We go out of our way to do a better job. It shows in the prices realized.  

Other Highlights:

Nineteenth-century cards and memorabilia were extremely strong, setting record after record, as is always the case at REA. The 1887 Kalamazoo Bats tobacco card of John Ward sold for an astounding $141,000, by far setting a new world record for any nineteenth-century baseball card ever sold at auction. This was one of three newly-discovered 1887 Kalamazoo Bats tobacco cards of New York players consigned by a Cooperstown-area family. The three cards, which the family had thought were worth hundreds of dollars (not thousands), sold for an incredible total of $190,937. The N172 Old Judge Cigarettes card of John Ward, a particularly outstanding example graded MINT 9 by PSA, sold for an incredible $29,375. A small original-owner collection of 57 Old Judges in mixed grade (reserve $2,000, estimate $4,000+) brought a surprisingly strong $23,500.

As is always the case at REA, all Babe Ruth items were red hot. Babe Ruths 1938 Brooklyn Dodgers cap from his coaching days sold for $70,500; Ruths bat dating from 1921 sold for $94,000. The 1927 Yankees team-signed ball, naturally signed by Ruth as well as all his teammates, realized $38,187.  The Babe Ruth signed sepia Hall of Fame postcard sold for $44,062, a new record price for any signed Hall of Fame postcard for any player ever. Even Babe Ruths spittoon (reserve $500), a gift to a business associate (apparently as a joke) sold for $14,100! 

A few of the many significant card highlights in the auction include: 1952 Topps #311 Mickey Mantle, graded EX/NM, sold for $35,250; 1916 Sporting News card of Babe Ruth Near Mint condition (PSA NM 7), his first card as a Major Leaguer, sold for $44,062. Jim Thorpe from the same 1916 M101-5 Sporting News set, graded NM-MT 8 (OC) by PSA, also sold for $44,062, a world record in any condition for this significant card. A complete set of all six 1911 M110 Sporting Life cabinet cards, offered individually, sold for an incredible total of $133,362, including $41,125 for Ty Cobb, a record price for any M110 Sporting Life cabinet card. The collection of sixty-nine 1903 E107 Breisch-Williams caramel cards, mostly in low-grade, sold for a combined total of $96,643, for an incredible average of $1,400 per card. The 1894 Mayos Cut Plug set of forty-eight cards, which were also offered individually, sold for a total of $129,308. The 1916 Holmes-To-Homes Bread card of Joe Jackson, purchased just a few months ago by the consignor on eBay for $4,000, sold for a little more: the final price in the REA auction was $32,312. 

Complete PSA-graded sets were on fire: The 1914 Cracker Jack set of 144 cards, all graded by PSA, sold for $88,125; the 1934 Goudey Gum near-set (89 of 96 cards), also graded by PSA (average grade 7.12) sold for $64,625; two 1952 Topps sets in mixed grade, each with a reserve of $5,000, sold for $26,437 and $32,312 respectively. The  1954 Topps set (average PSA grade 7.42) sold for $22,325; a 1956 Topps set, with every card graded PSA 8, was hammered down at $38,187; and the 1957 Topps set, also graded PSA 8, sold for a staggering $41,125. Even more recent PSA-graded sets sold for big money: a PSA-graded 1969 Topps Super set (average grade 9.60) sold for $17,625; a PSA-graded 1971 Topps set (average grade 8.10), sold for $29,375; a 1972 Topps set (PSA grade average 8.50) sold at $23,350; and a 1973 Topps set (PSA grade average 8.51) sold for $10,575. 

Additional rare card results include: 1915 E145 Cracker Jack #103 Joe Jackson (graded EX-MT 6 by PSA) sold for $26,437 (275% of the $9,500 SMR guide price); Christy Mathewson, also from the classic 1915 Cracker Jack set (graded NM/MT+), sold for $16,450; a 1911 T210 Old Mill Tobacco card of Casey Stengel, graded VG-EX by PSA and featuring the Ol Proffessor as a minor leaguer in his earliest days as a ballplayer, sold for an amazing $41,125, setting a new world-record price for this classic card; 1933 Goudey #144 Babe Ruth in PSA 8 NM-MT condition realized $23,500; and an 1887 Kalamazoo Bats New York Mets player card in Excellent condition sold for $26,437. A collection of ten Voskamps Coffee cards featuring 1913 Pittsburg Pirates players, saved in the same family since the year of issue, sold for $44,062, including $17,625 for Honus Wagner graded VG; the E90-1 American Caramel company card of Joe Jackson in Good condition sold at $16,450, and a second example that was trimmed but had an impressive Nr/Mt appearance sold for $20,000. An original-owner shoebox collection of 722 1949 Bowman baseball cards, an unusual year for such a large group of Bowman bubble-gum cards, did not escape notice: the final price for the lot was $26,437. An original-owner collection of thirty-six rare 1910 Clement Brothers Bread cards, consigned directly from a family that has saved them since 1910, sold for $57,868, including $11,750 for the highlight card of Hall of Fame pitching star Addie Joss. 

As strong as cards were, a case can be made that memorabilia was even stronger: Stan Musials 1953 Cardinals jersey sold for $44,062; a 1939 letter written by Lou Gehrig discussing his illness, with a reserve of $10,000, sold for $41,125, a record for a Gehrig letter; Wilcy Moores 1927 Yankees uniform sold for an incredible $64,625; Josh Gibsons 1932 Homestead Grays player contract with a reserve of $5,000 sold for $32,312; an extraordinary newly-discovered panoramic photograph of the American Negro Giants including the legendary Rube Foster was offered with a reserve of $5,000 and was hammered down for $35,250. A 1972 Hank Aaron jersey graded A9 by MEARS sold for $29,375. Ken Boyers rookie 1955 St. Louis Cardinals uniform (graded A10 by MEARS) sold for $22,325, a record for a 1950s non-Hall of Famer flannel. A 1919 World Series program at Chicago, for Game One of the infamous Black Sox scandal, with a reserve of $2,000 sold for $17,625. Early World Series press pins, which have long been depressed in price, sprang to life, selling extremely strongly, including a record $15,275 for a 1915 Phillies press pin. 

The auction also included an impressive selection of select items from other sports, Americana, nonsport cards, and original card artwork, all of which sold extremely strong, including: A Michael Jordan rookie jersey graded A10 by MEARS sold for $50,000; a 1959 Jim Taylor jersey Green Bay Packers jersey sold for $22,325, and a 1962-1965 Jim Brown Cleveland Browns jersey realized an extraordinary record $70,500.

Many other auction records were shattered for pre-1948 baseball cards, nineteenth-century baseball cards and memorabilia, non-sport cards, and Americana. Further information and complete auction results are available online at www.RobertEdwardAuctions.com

Copies of the 724-page full-color premium catalog are also still available free. Go to www.RobertEdwardAuctions.com, click Free Catalog, and fill in name and address. Robert Edward Auctions is currently assembling its next sale. For further information contact: Robert Edward Auctions, PO Box 7256, Watchung, NJ or call (908)-226-9900.

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Robert Edward Auctions, LLC is a one of the worlds leading specialty auction houses, devoted exclusively to the sale of rare baseball cards, memorabilia, and Americana. 

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For immediate release: May 15, 2007

Baseball Card and Memorabilia Auction Shatters Industry Records At Robert Edward Auctions!!!

$8.7 Million Sale Is Most Successful Multi-Consignor Baseball Auction In The History of Collecting

Watchung, New Jersey. Collectors, dealers, and market watchers were expecting great results, but in the end were absolutely stunned by the across-the-board record final prices, totaling a staggering 8.7 million dollars, on all nineteenth and early twentieth century baseball cards and memorabilia at Robert Edward Auctions on April 28th. "It is hard to put into words the success of this auction," said REA president Robert Lifson. "Everything went perfect. In many ways, this was the single most successful baseball auction in the history of the collecting world." The total $8.7 million in sales for the auction set a new world record for a multi-owner all-consignment baseball card and memorabilia auction. This total also represents a new world record for any multi-consignor auction in which the auction house, auction house executives, and employees are prohibited from bidding in the auction. In fact, the $8.7 million dollar auction total is also a new record dollar volume ever to be hammered down in a single day in the history of sports collecting, surpassing the previous record of $7.5 million set by REA in 2006. No other sports card or memorabilia auction in the history of the field has ever sold anywhere near this dollar volume in a single day. Even the number of catalogs shipped – ten thousand – was a record! The auction results at REA are widely recognized as providing the most important and respected snapshot of the vintage baseball card and memorabilia marketplace of the entire year. "The disclosure policies of the REA auction process, our focus on there being no conflict of interests, the unparalleled confidence that bidders have in REA, all of these factors naturally contribute to strong results and the market's confidence in these results," explains Lifson. "Of course, it helps to have great material, and we really had a lot of incredible consignments. The confidence our consignors and buyers have in us is the real key to the great success of this sale." Record prices were set on countless items, both in cards and memorabilia, and spanning all eras. "Compared to some companies, Robert Edward Auctions is a small firm. But that's actually part of our strength. We pay attention to details. We do everything better. No matter what criteria you have, we believe that we do the best job in the world for buyers and consignors. Our philosophy has always been very simple: If we do a great job, great things will happen. And the results show."

The extraordinary results do, indeed, leave no doubt that every item was sold to the person or institution that was willing to pay the most. The 1594 lots offered were won by an incredible 629 different bidders, illustrating the power of the marketing and auction process, and the breadth of bidder interest. Successful bidders included some of the nation's most prestigious museums and corporate institutional collections. By any measure this was one of the most carefully assembled, important, and successful baseball card and memorabilia auctions in the history of collecting. "We set record prices across the board" reports Lifson. "All areas of the auction received a tremendous response and very strong prices. Nineteenth-century baseball items were unbelievable, as always, as were all early baseball cards, advertising and display pieces, graded cards, Babe Ruth items, autographs, memorabilia, non-sport cards and artwork. This was a record-setting auction in every way."

The sale was the most successful auction in Robert Edward Auctions' 37-year history. Thousands of bidders from all over the world, primarily the U.S. but also including Europe, Japan, and Hong Kong, participated. Exactly 24,470 bids were placed and over 99% of the lots sold. The average lot sold for more than double the high-end estimate. "Prices were significantly higher than most consignors expected" according to REA president Robert Lifson. "Part of this, of course, is due to a strong market and having great material, but part of this is also because all of the most serious collectors in the world are comfortable bidding at Robert Edward Auctions. Our Honest-Auto Bid system allows bidders to place limit bids and know that they are the only ones in the world that know their limit. The fact that we are truly an all-consignment auction, maybe the only one in the field, and the fact that we don't allow auction house executives, employees, or the auction house itself to bid, is also very confidence-inspiring to serious bidders. We don't take any shortcuts in processing collections. Bidders have confidence in our expertise and opinions. We don't own the material so we naturally have more credibility than dealers or auction houses that are also dealers. Our commitment to research and authentication is universally recognized as unparalleled. Our expertise in general is highly valued by bidders in a way that is very rare for an auction house. There are many collectors that only bid with us. It's not an accident. We go out of our way to do a better job. It shows in the prices realized."

Highlighted by The Barry Halper Estate Collection, the REA auction also included numerous additional important collections and new discoveries. The recently rediscovered 1838 Olympic Constitution, previously known to exist but which had been lost to the collecting world for decades, sold for an astounding $141,000, setting a record price not just for any baseball publication but a record price for any sports related publication of any kind. The 1914 Baltimore News Babe Ruth rookie card was consigned by a non-collecting family from Providence, Rhode Island. The grandfather, who passed away in 1985, was a casual collector who had a small vintage card collection he assembled mostly from frequenting flea markets. The collection, which had been kept in storage since 1985 until very recently, by chance included the Ruth rookie. Just prior to contacting REA, the family came very close to selling the heirloom outright to a dealer who offered $8,000. They're glad they waited. The card sold for $200,000. The Barry Halper Estate Collection, consigned directly from the Halper family and comprised of the "small collection" of items that Barry Halper kept for his personal enjoyment during his "retirement from collecting," was offered in 247 lots and realized $1.4 million dollars. The Halper baseball film library alone (reserve $2,500) sold for $117,500.

Significant card highlights in the auction include: A 1952 Topps set (reserve $50,000), entirely graded by PSA, sold for $164,500. An impressive collection of 403 1886-1889 Old Judge tobacco cards in varying conditions, with a reserve of $10,000, sold for an incredible $111,625. A complete set of T206 White Border tobacco cards in varying condition (reserve $10,000, est. $20,000/$30,000) sold for $105,750. The 1953 Bowman set (which was entirely graded by PSA, with an SMR value of $65,000 and a reserve of $25,000, sold for an amazing $94,800.

The M101-4 1916 Sporting News Babe Ruth card, graded Near Mint 7 by PSA, sold for an astonishing $82,250, by far a record price for this important card in this condition. Another example of this very same card graded by PSA in this very same grade sold for $41,520 at another auction just one day earlier. "When comparing apples with apples, REA consistently realizes more for vintage baseball cards," says REA president Robert Lifson, "But usually not 100% more on the very same card in the very same grade encapsulated by the very same company, auctioned just one day apart. At least not for a card of this stature and value. We can't explain why ours brought so much more, only that it's already paid for and shipped out! It could be that ours was just a better card. We are told all the time that the fact that we don't do anything to the cards and have a strict policy against resubmitting cards or in any way lobbying for higher grades, all of which are common practices in the baseball card industry, means that many times our professionally graded Near Mint card actually is better than another auction's Near Mint card graded by the same company. This is starting to show up in a big way in auction prices realized. Of course, grading is subjective and many cards we get are already graded when we get them, so it could have just as easily been the other way around. But it wasn't. And it usually isn't. When we catalog already encapsulated graded cards of significant value, we often provide our own commentary, sometimes positive, sometimes negative, which collectors take very seriously. Sometimes we absolutely kill these cards, they have so many problems. If the consignor won't let us describe them accurately, it's our policy to send them back. We know that sometimes our descriptions on overgraded cards sound harsh, but we're just telling it like it is. Bidders really appreciate this. When we get a completely professionally graded 1941 Play Ball set with an average grade of 7.19, better than Near Mint condition, and all the key cards representing a very significant percentage of the value of the set are extremely overgraded, like Lot 453 in this auction, there's no way to sugarcoat it. If those cards had deserved their grades this set would have sold for a huge premium to its SMR book value of $23,500. It sold for $21,150. Still a lot of money but a discount instead of a premium. A set like that should sell at a discount. The consignor was very happy by the way; we insisted on showing him our description before we went to press and he was fine with it. On the flip side, sometimes cards look nicer than their assigned grades. On the $82,250 1916 Sporting News Babe Ruth card, we thought PSA was very fair and, if anything, conservative in grading this card at Near Mint. In our catalog description we didn't say the card should have been graded higher, but it was such a beautiful card that we had to say "if the card was in a NM-MT 8 holder, we wouldn't bat an eye. It looks like a NM-MT 8." Our opinion on this card, which was right on the money, was very meaningful to bidders and probably contributed to why this important high profile card sold for literally double what the same card in the same grade sold for elsewhere just one day earlier. It works both ways."

Additional auction highlights include: The 1912 Fenway Park First Pitched Ball sold for $85,000; a 1915 Yankees jersey (with a reserve of $2,000) sold for an unbelievable $55,812, by far setting a record for a non Hall of Famer jersey style of any team from any era; the circa 1869 bat attributed to George Wright, with a reserve of $10,000, sold for $88,125, setting a new auction record for any nineteenth-century bat; Mickey Mantle's 1955-1965 era cap (reserve $5,000) sold for an incredible $52,875, setting a new world record for a postwar game-used cap.

Additional early card highlights: The Tango Eggs near-set (16 different cards, #1 on the PSA Set Registry) sold for $58,175. The $100,000 reward publicly offered by REA for proof of the existence of six rumored-to-exist but not yet formally documented Tango Eggs cards went uncollected. "They could certainly be out there but, fortunately for us, no one actually came through to claim the reward" reports Lifson. "But it was fun talking to collectors about the reward money." The previously undiscovered Baltimore News team card with Babe Ruth (found with the individual $200,000 Ruth card) sold for $52,875, bringing the total take for the Rhode Island family to just over a quarter of a million dollars for the two cards. "This has been very exciting. It's been like winning the lottery for us, only more fun," said a family representative. The auction included two examples of legendary T206 tobacco card rarity Eddie Plank. The first was graded PR-FR 1 by PSA, the lowest grade possible. With a reserve of $2,000, the PR-FR example sold for an incredible $21,500. The second T206 Plank (reserve $2,500) was graded "Good" by SGC and sold for an amazing $35,250. Both of these results are by far record prices for this card in each of these grades. The T204 Ramly tobacco set in mixed grade sold for $52,875. A very clean mixed-grade T205 Gold Border tobacco card set (208 cards) with a reserve of $10,000 generated tremendous interest, finally selling for $70,500. "Some of the prices on these vintage mixed grade sets may seem high, but collectors were particularly drawn to these sets. They may have ranged from Fair to Excellent condition, but most of these cards were assembled decades ago by old-time collectors, as opposed to being collected in modern times. Collectors told us again and again that they appreciated that the cards had not been doctored or tampered with. Many bidders were willing to pay a significant premium because of this," explained Lifson.. "I can't blame them."

Nineteenth-century cards and memorabilia were extremely strong, setting record after record, as is always the case at REA. The 1887 N690 Kalamazoo Bats cards of Danny Richardson, graded EX/MT by SGC (which was previously sold by REA in June 1995 for $3,357, and was consigned to the 2007 REA auction directly by the original 1995 buyer), sold for a record $49,937. An 1871 George Wright cabinet card by Warren Studios (reserve $1,000; est. $2,000/$4,000), which was the only baseball item discovered among a group of unrelated-to-sports documents during the settling of an estate in Colorado, sold for a record $17,625. The 1869 Cincinnati Red Stockings Peck & Snyder advertising trade card, one of the classics of nineteenth-century card collecting and featuring the first professional team, was encapsulated as "Authentic" by PSA and sold for a new world record price of $29,375. An exciting collection of 59 1898 Cameo Pepsin Gum pins, one of the largest groups of these important early baseball celluloid pins ever assembled, was offered in seven lots and sold for $44,236. The 1864 Brooklyn Resolutes CDV team card featuring Henry Chadwick, which last sold for $16,000 at auction just a few years ago, set an extremely important new record when offered at REA, selling for $47,000. This is a record price not just for this particular nineteenth-century team card, but for any baseball CDV of any kind to appear at auction ever. "It was great to see this card get the respect it deserves. This is a card that in the past, in our opinion, was always undervalued and underappreciated. We never understood why. We were happy to see the market appreciate the significance and rarity of this card in this auction."

Results on all 1910 era cards, especially extreme rarities, were very strong. A T206 of Ty Cobb with a rare UZIT advertising back sold for $29,375. This very same Ty Cobb tobacco card with a common advertising back lists for just $2,900 in the SMR this grade. A T206 tobacco card common player (Pastorious) graded MINT 9 by PSA (SMR value $2,400) sold for $8,225. A complete set of 1910 D322 Tip Top Pirates bakery cards in mixed grade (reserve $2,000; est. $4,000/$6,000) sold for an incredible $23,500. The largest collection of E125 American Caramel Die-Cuts to ever be assembled, a total of 37 cards, was presented in nine lots. The collection realized a total of $154,000, including $26,437 for Eddie Plank, a record price for any E125 of any player ever. A collection of seven T3 Turkey Red tobacco cards, all Hall of Famers and all graded by PSA (reserve $5,000; est. $10,000/$15,000), sold very strong at $26,437. Four M110 1911 Sporting News cabinet cards, each graded by SGC, were offered individually and sold for an incredible total of $47,587, including a record $22,325 for Honus Wagner in Vg-Ex condition. A T205 Gold Border of Christy Mathewson graded NM+ by SGC sold for $10,575; and a 1911 M116 Sporting Life card of Walter Johnson, graded MINT 9 by PSA, was hammered down at $12,925.

It was only a few years ago, in May 2004, that a color 1912 Boston Garter of Hall of Famer Christy Mathewson in Very Good to Excellent condition sold for a then mind-boggling record price of $31,900. In this auction a common player, Robert Bescher, in Very Good condition sold for an astounding $35,250. "We can't explain some of these prices," comments Lifson, "It just goes to show that in an auction, anything can happen, and when it comes to really rare material, collectors will often throw out the book as far as referring to past prices. As advanced collectors grow more and more experienced, they're learning what they will see again and what they won't. There will always be cards that get a lot of hype and go for a lot of money but aren't that rare. Advanced collectors are growing more sophisticated and many are putting a greater emphasis on rarity in determining values. That hasn't always been the case. The market is constantly changing. It's hard to predict what some significant rarities will bring when they finally go to auction, but clearly, in some cases, it's a lot more than any guide will say and a lot more than people expect."

Additional interesting highlights: In 2006 REA offered a pair of 1911-1914 D304 Martens Bakery cards, representing two cards from a find totaling six of these rare cards, all in high grade, which were discovered tucked within the pages of a book, undisturbed for decades. Those two cards offered last year sold for such an incredible and unexpectedly high record amount ($18,000) that the consignor was moved to offer the remaining four cards (which he had planned to keep forever) in 2007 in the hopes that the remaining cards would bring a similar record price. Lightning did indeed strike twice! The four remaining cards, three high-grade and one only graded Vg by SGC, sold for $32,312. A 1915 Cracker Jack of Joe Jackson graded EX by PSA, which lists for $6500 in SMR, sold for $18,800. A 1914 Cracker Jack of Joe Jackson graded EX+ by SGC sold for $21,150. A 1933 Goudey #106 Nap Lajoie, one of card collecting's famous gum card rarities, was graded Near Mint by PSA and sold for $32,312. A 1933 Goudey #53 Babe Ruth graded NM-MT 8 by PSA sold for $38,187; a T206 Ty Cobb with green background graded NM 7 by PSA sold for $17,625; a 1953 Topps Mickey Mantle SGC 92 NM/MT+ sold for $16,450; a 1955 Topps set with all 206 cards graded NM 7 by PSA sold for $19,975; an extremely high-grade 1959 Topps set, #11 on the PSA Registry, sold for $38,187. A high-grade 1959 Fleer Ted Williams set, with seventy-eight cards graded MINT 9 by PSA, sold for $15,275. An unopened cello pack of 1954 Topps, looking exactly as it did when it originally sold for a nickel some fifty-three years ago, sold for a "slight premium" to its original cost: $5,581. For what this pack sold for in 2007 at REA, in 1954 you could have gotten 110,620 packs!

As strong as cards were, a case can be made that memorabilia was even stronger: An original 1923 Yankee Stadium Terra Cotta figural piece, one of the great souvenirs from Yankee Stadium which previously had an auction record of $9,600 sold for an astounding $52,875. The Joe Jackson signed document in the sale was last sold at REA in 2004 for $25,875. In 2007 this very same document sold for a record $44,062. Additional signed items include: An autographed photo of Christy Mathewson sold for $19,975; an autographed photo of the 1939 Hall of Fame Induction Ceremonies brought $23,500; a Roberto Clemente single-signed ball sold for $9,987. A presentation photograph of the 1917 All-Star team assembled in honor of Timothy Murnane Day was highly sought after, selling for more than double its previous auction record at $18,800. The 1870 New York Fashions litho, the auction catalog cover piece, was instantly propelled to being one of the most valuable nineteenth-century baseball display pieces, selling for more than three times its previous record at $22,325. A recently-discovered Babe Comes Home insert movie poster with restoration sold for $23,500. The title lobby card from this same movie sold for $16,450. A particularly strong and magnificently signed example of Mathewson's book "Pitching In A Pinch" (reserve $2,000; est. $4,000/$8,000) sold for $26,437, by far setting a record for any Christy Mathewson-signed book ever sold at auction. A check written to and endorsed by legendary deadball era pitcher Joe "Iron Man" McGinnity, the first McGinnity check REA has ever seen, had a reserve of $500 and was estimated at only $1,000 to $1,500 because it was laminated, a condition problem which traditionally very significantly impacts the value of autographed items. "We're seeing more and more that technical condition problems are secondary when it comes to important rarities. Eye appeal will always play a role, of course" adds REA president Robert Lifson, "but if it's rare, important, and is pleasing to look at, even if it does have serious technical condition flaws, it might bring as strong a price as if it were perfect." That is certainly what happened to the McGinnity check. It sold for $19,975.

Additional highlight memorabilia results include: 1927 Jim Bottomley St. Louis Cardinals game-used road jersey (reserve $5,000) sold for $38,187; a 1911 Boston Red Sox jersey of a common player realized $12,925; Derek Jeter game-used 2002 Yankee pinstripe jersey (reserve $2,000) sold for $15,275; 1911-16 Ty Cobb pro model bat sold for $29,375; 1917-1920 era Joe Jackson pro model bat sold for $35,250; 1939 era Ted Williams pro model bat $17,625; 1956 Mickey Mantle game-used bat $32,312. Pete Rose's Hall of Fame Lifetime Pass signed inscribed to Barry Halper: "Barry, I shouldn't need this pass to get into the Hall of Fame" was always one of Halper's favorite "story" items, and sold for $18,800. A very noteworthy new record was set for highly respected baseball artist Mike Schacht (1936-2001). His Warhol-style four portraits on one canvas of Joe DiMaggio sold for a world record for this important artist at $29,375.

As usual, all items related to Babe Ruth were red hot. A never-before-offered autographed photograph of Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig, taken on July 4, 1939, the day of Lou Gehrig's famous farewell speech, sold for $58,750, deservedly selling for a great premium to what Ruth-Gehrig autographed photos normally bring. A beautiful and extremely striking large-format 11 x 14-inch signed presentation photograph of Babe Ruth originating from the H&B archives sold for $26,437. Ruth's book contract for his biography, The Babe Ruth Story, sold for $38,187. A promissory note relating to the 1920 sale of Babe Ruth from the Yankees to the Red Sox, signed by Frazee, Ruppert, and Huston, sold for $44,062. Ruth himself was sold for only $100,000. Even Babe Ruth's hair, which REA officials noted they have no way to authenticate but which had for decades been a highly-prized keepsake in the legendary Barry Halper Collection, sold for $38,187. Ruth's personal toiletries, including a hand mirror, hair brush, comb, shoe horn, and glass toothbrush holder with metal cap, all with Ruth's monogram and which were a gift direct from Mrs. Ruth to Barry Halper, sold for $16,450. A 1934 Tour of Japan photo album with signatures of all the tourists including Ruth and Gehrig, realized $26,437. Numerous Babe Ruth signed baseballs in all conditions were sold, including a particularly impressive signed (non-Major League) Goldsmith brand ball (reserve $1,000; est. $2,500/$5,000+) that realized $26,437. "Non-Major League Ruth balls traditionally sell for a significant discount, but this result shows that non-Major League signed balls can bring big money too." This was a record for a non-Major League Ruth-signed ball.

The last lot in the auction, Lot #1594, was comprised of cards donated by generous vintage card collectors to raise money for charity. The lot raised $7,050 for The Painted Turtle, an innovative camp and family care center for children with life-threatening illnesses. It seems most fitting to us that a shared interest in collecting baseball cards, which were intended to bring joy to children long ago, should play a role in contributing to the well being of children today who have to deal with the most serious hardships that life can offer to them and their families. This project was conceived, organized, and executed by the vintage card collectors of the Net54 Vintage Baseball Card Forum. It was an honor for REA to contribute our services to this project, and to help execute the vision of the generous collectors who have donated their time, effort, and material to such a worthy charitable cause. We hope this will be the first of many similar auctions, in which, working together, collectors with an extra card here, or duplicate there, can make a difference. The Painted Turtle and the children whose lives they enrich give thanks to the contributing members of Net54, all bidders, and to auction winner Jon Rogers of North Little Rock, Arkansas for your great generosity.

The auction also included an impressive selection of select items from other sports, Americana, nonsport cards, and original card artwork, all of which sold extremely strong, including: A Michael Jordan rookie jersey (reserve $10,000) sold for a new world record price, an extraordinary $70,500. The 1992 Jordan Olympic jersey also sold very strong at $38,187. A 1948 Leaf football card of Sammy Baugh, graded NM-MT 8 by PSA and which lists for $2750 in the SMR, sold for an amazing $12,925. A 1975 Peanuts daily by Charles Schulz sold for $11,750, and a 1991 Peanuts Sunday sold for $23,500. Many high quality non-sport cards sold at levels that have historically been reserved only for rare baseball cards. Among the many impressive non-sport card auction results: There was tremendous interest in the complete set of 1932 U.S. Caramel "Presidents" cards (reserve $2,500) that included the rare McKinley card, universally recognized as one of non-sport card collecting's great rarities. The set finally sold for $22,325. A complete set of 1936 Gum, Inc. "G-Men & Heroes of the Law" (reserve $2,500, est. $5,00/$7,000) was hammered down at $22,325; and a tremendous collection of miscellaneous nineteenth-century non-sport tobacco cards sold for $32,125.

Many other auction records were shattered for pre-1948 baseball cards, nineteenth-century baseball cards and memorabilia, non-sport cards, and Americana. Further information and complete auction results are available online at www.RobertEdwardAuctions.com

Copies of the 680-page full-color premium catalog are also still available free. Go to www.RobertEdwardAuctions.com, click "Free Catalog," and fill in name and address. Robert Edward Auctions is currently assembling its next sale. For further information contact: Robert Edward Auctions, PO Box 7256, Watchung, NJ or call (908)-226-9900.

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Robert Edward Auctions, LLC is a one of the world's leading specialty auction houses, devoted exclusively to the sale of rare baseball cards, memorabilia, and Americana.

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For immediate release: March 20, 2007

Historic Baseball Treasures 1838-1968 Highlight REA's April Auction

Collectors brace for one of the most historic auctions in the history of collecting

The very first Robert Edward Auctions catalog off the presses on April 5, 2007 will be presented to The National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in Cooperstown, New York, for their library, as is the longstanding tradition. The following day, however, Ten-Thousand 600-page catalogs will be sent to collectors all over the country and the world who have anxiously been waiting all year for the collecting world's most exciting and highly-anticipated auction, the annual sale by Robert Edward Auctions. Inside the auction catalog will be hundreds of items worthy of Cooperstown, many of which will ultimately find their way into the most prestigious collections, both private and public, in the world.

The final date of bidding is April 28. Bidding starts April 9 by FAX, phone, or the Internet via the Robert Edward's site. Robert Lifson, president of the Watchung, New Jersey, auction house, expects the total sales for the event to exceed $5-million. Coming to the block will be over 1500 lots of baseball collectibles covering the entire history of the game from 1838 to the present. Of special note is the unveiling of the recently discovered 1838 Philadelphia Olympics Constitution, the earliest relic of organized baseball from the first organized baseball team in existence. Referred to by some as the "Magna Carta" of the game of baseball, this item is arguably the most historically significant item relating to the origins of the National Pastime in existence. This is the document that records the birth of organized baseball.

The auction will include many remarkable discoveries and extraordinary rarities in all areas and from all eras, including: over 200 lots of pre-1900 baseball cards and memorabilia; display pieces; original art; rare pinbacks; autographs; graded cards; tobacco cards; caramel cards; regionals; 1930s gum cards; Topps and Bowman sets; bats, gloves, uniforms, and other equipment.

"This is one of the best auctions we've ever put together," says REA president Robert Lifson. "The highlight section in my eyes is The Barry Halper Collection. Barry Halper was the preeminent collector in the history of baseball cards and memorabilia. It would be impossible for us to put into words the positive impact he had on the entire field of collecting and on me personally. It's a special privilege and honor for Robert Edward Auctions to be chosen by the Halper family to present the balance of the Barry Halper Collection in this auction." Robert Edward Auctions oversaw the sale of the legendary Halper Collection in 1999, which realized over $26 Million. When he sold his collection, Barry kept a significant selection of items. It was a modest collection to Barry – but that was only in comparison to the extraordinary magnitude of the Halper Collection intact. In fact, the "modest" collection he kept was itself larger than most advanced collectors could ever hope to assemble in a lifetime. The Barry Halper Collection, comprised of those items that Barry Halper particularly enjoyed and personally held back from his famous sale for display during his "retirement from collecting," will be presented in over 200 lots in this sale.

Graded cards are a special strength of the auction. Included are many of the highest-graded cards and finest baseball card sets ever assembled. Among the items of special interest will be: one of the finest 1952 Topps sets ever assembled, all PSA-graded, with an average grade of 7.5; the set includes 228 NM-MT 8, 164 NM 7, and seventeen cards EX-MT 6, (the SMR value is $163,000, the reserve is $50,000); one of the finest 1953 Bowman Color sets ever assembled, with 159 cards graded NM-MT 8 and one NM 7 (Reserve $25,000; est. $50,000+); the #1 PSA Registry set of 1916 M101-4 Sporting News Complete Set (198 cards are offered as one lot, reserve $10,000; Ruth and Jackson, each graded PSA NM 7, will be offered as separate lots); the #1 PSA Registry Collection of 1916 Tango Brand Eggs cards (16 of 18 cards known, reserve $10,000); the #1 PSA 1956 Registry 1956 Topps pins complete set (Reserve $2,000, est. $5,000+); the #2 PSA Registry set of 1909-1911 E90-1 American Caramel Near-Complete Set (112 of 120 cards, reserve $10,000): the #7 PSA Registry set of 1941 Play Ball (average grade 7.19, reserve $10,000); the #9 PSA Registry set of 1954 Bowman (average grade 7.05, reserve $2,500, est. $5,00/$10,000+); the #11 PSA Registry set of 1959 Topps (average grade 8, reserve $10,000, est. $20,000+); plus numerous other completely PSA-graded sets and key single cards.

The newly discovered 1914 Baltimore News team card of Babe Ruth, and the newly-discovered individual 1914 Baltimore News card of Babe Ruth in Good condition, each carry a reserve of $10,000 and are expected to sell for considerably more than their modest minimums. The last 1914 Baltimore News Ruth card offered to the collecting world at auction was in lower grade (PR-FR) and sold for $150,800 at Robert Edward Auctions in 2006. Additional highlights include: the largest collection of E125 American Caramel Die-Cuts to ever be assembled, let alone come to auction (37 of the 42 cards which theoretically exist); complete sets of T204 Ramly Tobacco cards, T205 Gold Borders, and T206 White Borders; complete or near-complete sets of many 1910-era caramel card sets; over 200 PSA-graded T202 Hassan Triple Folder cards; two rare T206 Eddie Planks; an extremely rare 1869 Peck & Snyder advertising trade card featuring baseball's first professional team, the Cincinnati Red Stockings (est. $10,000+, reserve $5,000); an 1864 Brooklyn Resolutes Carte-de-Visite including Henry Chadwick, one of the most important of all pre-1900 cards and one of only two examples known (reserve $5,000, est. $10,000/$20,000); an extraordinary array of rare nineteenth-century baseball cards including examples issued by Kalamazoo Bats, Yum-Yum Tobacco, and G & B Gum, as well as many rare nineteenth-century baseball cabinet cards; Cracker Jack baseball cards issued in 1914 and 1915; literally thousands of 1910-era baseball tobacco cards, one the largest selections to ever be offered at auction; a collection of over 400 N172 1887 to 1890 Old Judge baseball cards issued by Goodwin & Co.; complete Topps and Bowman sets from virtually every year including three complete sets of 1952 Topps with the rare high-numbers.

The auction also features one of the finest selections of game-used bats to ever come to auction, including Babe Ruth, Ty Cobb, Willie Mays, Roberto Clemente, Ted Williams, Hank Aaron, Jimmie Foxx, one of only two known signature model bats dating from Joe Jackson's playing days (reserve $10,000); and two extraordinary Mickey Mantle bats including one dating from 1956, his triple crown year (reserve $5,000; est. $10,000/$15,000). Also included is a 1927 Jim Bottomley St. Louis Cardinals Jersey, the only example known for this Hall of Famer (reserve $5,000; est. $10,000/$15,000); a Joe Jackson signed document, one of only a few examples known (reserve $5,000; est. $10,000/$15,000); a 1937 Rock-Ola World Series Arcade electronic game, 53" x 41" x 29", (est. $20,000+, reserve $10,000); Mickey Mantle's game-used cap (reserve $5,000, est. $10,000+); a Christy Mathewson studio portrait photograph signed by Mathewson to legendary baseball photographer Louis Van Oeyen, originating from his estate (reserve $10,000, est. $20,000+); and an extraordinary original photograph of Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig together, taken on July 4, 1939, the day of Lou Gehrig's famous farewell speech, signed by both Ruth and Gehrig. This is one of baseball's most famous photographs, and one of only two signed examples known to exist (reserve $10,000; est. $20,000+).

Also included are: a collection of five 1911 M110 Sporting Life Cabinets, including Honus Wagner (Reserve $5,000); a 1912 H813 Boston Garter Bob Bescher, one of card collecting's rarest sample (reserve $2,500; est $5,000/$10,000); cards from rare sets such as 1911 T217 Mono Cigarettes, 1886 Lone Jack Cigarettes, 1915 T214 Victory Tobacco, and 1894 Alpha Photo-Engraving. Other cards include: an extremely rare 1889 M-UNC Police Gazette Cabinet of Billy "Adonis" Terry (reserve $1,000); 1955 Topps Double Headers set (reserve $1,000; est. $2,000/$4000); and numerous key cards from all eras such as 1939 Play Ball #92 Ted Williams SGC NM/MT+ 92 (reserve $1,500; est. $3,000/$5,000); 1914 E145 Cracker Jack #88 Christy Mathewson SGC FR 20 (reserve $2,000; est. $4,000/$6,000); 1941 Play Ball #71 Joe DiMaggio SGC NM/MT 88 (reserve $2,500; est. $4,000/$8,000); 1933 R319 Goudey #181 Babe Ruth SGC NM/MT 88 (reserve $5,000; est $10,000/$15,000); and 1915 E145 Cracker Jack #30 Ty Cobb SGC NM/MT 88 (reserve $5,000; est. $10,000/$20,000).

Additional items of special note include: the #1 PSA Registry complete set of 1936 Gum, Inc. "G-Men & Heroes of the Law" (reserve $2,500, est. $5,000/$7,500); an extraordinary example of the 1933 Goudey #106 Nap Lajoie, one of the most celebrated of all baseball card rarities, graded PSA NM 7 (est. $20,000/30,000, reserve $10,000); a 1952 Mickey Mantle PSA EX-MT 6 (reserve $5,000, est. $10,000/$15,000); a large selection of high-grade low population report cards from key sets such as 1933 Goudey and T206 (including examples from the Harris Collection); a completely PSA-graded 1933 DeLong Gum set; a 1955 Topps complete set of 206 cards with every card PSA graded NM 7; one of only two known examples of the 14 x 36-inch 1927 Babe Comes Home Movie Poster Insert (reserve $5,000); a complete set of 1933 Goudey "Big League" bubble-gum cards; 1914 WG4 Polo Grounds game cards of Ty Cobb and Joe Jackson – both graded PSA GEM MINT 10 (reserve $2,000 and $3,000, respectively), 1949 Bowman PCL Complete PSA-Graded Set; one of the largest collections ever assembled of the rare 1898 Cameo Pepsin Gum baseball pins (59 different); single-signed baseballs of Babe Ruth, Roberto Clemente, Jackie Robinson, and Ty Cobb; famous 1939 Hall of Fame Induction photograph signed by all including Ruth, Wagner, Johnson, and Young, one of only several known signed examples (reserve $5,000); a 1934 Tour of Japan presentation album signed by all players including Ruth and Gehrig (reserve $5,000, est. $10,000/$15,000); a 1911 Boston Red Sox jersey; the earliest known Yankee jersey dating from 1915; 1911 M116 Sporting Life Walter Johnson PSA MINT 9 (reserve $5,000, est. $10,000+), an extraordinary selection of 1934 R304 Al Demaree Die-Cuts issued by Dietz Gum Company, Brooks Robinson's 1962 game-used Baltimore Orioles home jersey (reserve $1,000, est. $4,000+); items originating from the estates of Alexander Cartwright, Henry Chadwick, Tim Murnane, George Wright, Paul Krichell (the Yankee scout who discovered Lou Gehrig); material relating to Boston's legendary "3rd Base" tavern-owner Michael "Nuf Ced" McGreevey and the legendary Royal Rooters, and the first ball ever thrown out at Fenway Park in 1912 (reserve $85,000).

Sports other than baseball are also represented by a small selection of extremely high quality items, including Michael Jordan's 1984-85 Rookie Uniform (graded MEARS A10, reserve $10,000); and 1992 Michael Jordan Signed Game-Used Olympic "Dream Team" Jersey (graded MEARS A10, reserve $5,000). These jerseys represent two of only three Michael Jordan jerseys to ever be awarded the highest grade of A10 for authenticity by MEARS.

The auction also includes an incredible selection of very high quality Comic, Pop Culture, and Americana related items. In addition to thousands of nonsport cards dating from the 1880s to the 1960s, the Americana section is highlighted by The National Biscuit Collection, representing an extraordinary collection of items from the company's archives, including the original 1900 painting of the Uneeda Biscuit Boy, the corporate symbol of the company and at one time the single most famous advertising icon in the world; the largest collection of original artworks by Charles Addams to ever come to auction (21 original artworks, including many published in the New Yorker); and two original Peanuts comic strip artworks by Charles Schulz including an extraordinary Baseball Sunday comic strip (reserve $5,000, est. $10,000).

For over 30 years Robert Edward Auctions has specialized in all areas of historic baseball collectibles, as well other sport, non-sport, and Americana collectibles including political and campaign memorabilia, autographs and manuscripts, and original illustration art. Robert Edward Auctions has been responsible for many of the most important baseball memorabilia sales including overseeing the sale of the $26-million Barry Halper baseball collection, universally recognized as the best and largest in the world; the legendary "Gretzky-McNail" T206 Honus Wagner card, $1.3-million; the uniform Yankee legend Lou Gehrig was wearing in 1939 when he gave his famous farewell speech, saying "Today, I consider myself to be the luckiest man on the face of the earth", $306,000; and the 1854 Knickerbocker Trophy baseball, now on permanent exhibit at the Baseball Hall of Fame, Cooperstown, New York, at a then-record $72,000.

Copies of the 600-page full-color premium catalog (shipping April 7) are available free. To review the catalog on-line, to learn more about Robert Edward Auctions, or to receive a complimentary copy of the catalog, visit www.RobertEdwardAuctions.com. Robert Edward Auctions is currently assembling their next sale. For further information contact: Robert Edward Auctions, PO Box 7256, Watchung, NJ or call (908)-226-9900.

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Robert Edward Auctions, LLC is a one of the world's leading specialty auction houses, devoted exclusively to the sale of rare baseball cards, memorabilia, and Americana.

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Robert Edward Auctions has released many important formal announcements over the years, including many communications sent directly by email to the thousands of collectors on our mailing lists, but perhaps no REA release had quite the impact of the public service announcement sent by email to thousands of REA customers on October 25, 2006. Though we have been pounding the drums about these and other equally important industry issues for many years, the timing and the issues covered seemed to strike a chord with collectors in a way that we had never before seen.

The following is the complete text of the October 25, 2006 REA Public Service Announcement:

REA Public Service Announcement: October 25, 2006

Dear Collectors,

Every once in while (OK, more than once in a while), REA likes to communicate about issues that we think deserve attention but for some reason are receiving little or no attention. There are several topics that we would like to bring to the attention of buyers today, in the hopes of educating buyers and maybe saving someone money.

1) Practically every day we are seeing fake items. Fake printed items. Posters that are actually reproductions of vintage posters. Stand-up cardboard counter displays that are not real. Babe Ruth Candy wrappers that are not real. Fans that picture baseball player portraits that are reproductions. Photographs that appear to be old but are not vintage. There is no limit to what can be made with computers, especially with printing equipment available today that is very economical and which years ago did not even exist. These items are being intentionally made to fool people into parting with their money for worthless items. These items are being made to cheat buyers. Many of these items are somehow reproduced from books and auction catalogs, often enlarged from small quality illustrations to their correct original size. With computers these days, it is possible for some criminals to produce very real-looking reproductions and also to produce "fantasy pieces" (defined as those items that are not actually reproductions, as there is no original, but are made to look old to fool buyers). This is a BIG problem. These items are offered to us practically every day, and they are being offered to us by collectors who themselves are victims. Most of the sophisticated fake items of this type that we have seen appear to have one thing in common: They were purchased by sellers in the state of Ohio. It is obvious to us that the individual(s) responsible for most or all of these imaginative quality fakes is located in the state of Ohio, though these items are now circulating throughout the country. It is easy for us to tell in almost all cases whether an item is real or not, often just from a scan. We understand from experience that not everyone can, including the numerous victims who have sent us these recently produced fake items which at a glance appear to be vintage items. If you think that you have purchased a fake item of this type and would like our opinion, we will be happy to be of assistance. Please write and/or send scans.

2) In recent weeks we have received a number of consignments of graded cards that has motivated us to adopt a formal policy regarding altered professionally graded cards that we have not previously seen a need to articulate. The altering of cards is so widespread, and "card doctors" so brazen, that REA has actually been receiving cards submitted for auction to us that are the very same cards that have been sold by REA previously - in some cases just months earlier - and which, since purchase, have been significantly altered, reholdered, and now grade higher according to the grading label. In some cases a given card has changed hands and the new consignor was not even aware it was a seriously altered card. It is our policy that when we are aware of such a problem, and we ARE looking, we will be happy to auction the card in question - but insist on providing all information describing the alterations which have occurred to the card of which we are certain. So far, the potential consignors of such cards have elected to have these cards returned rather than have a proper description provided by REA. Last week we returned a $10,000 card. The consignor couldn't believe it was the same card that we had just sold (in a lower grade and looking quite different) in a previous auction. Only after being provided with images of the card as it appeared when we previously sold it was the consignor finally convinced.

We're not guessing here. We are talking about cards that we know for a fact are problems. The fact that we have to address situations such as this at all suggests a greater underlying problem than is generally recognized. And while it is bad enough that the altering of cards is an epidemic, it is particularly disturbing that some of the most sophisticated "work" on cards (including the previously mentioned $10,000 card) has actually been executed by employees of auction houses that also deal in cards. We have to ask ourselves "What is going on here?" Turning a blind eye to this issue, in our opinion, has far greater and more significant negative potential consequences than our calling attention to it and promoting discussion. We all know that there is a subjectivity to grading and that sometimes there is an honest difference of opinion regarding a grade, or sometimes even an honest mistake. We're not talking about honest mistakes here. Active and sophisticated collectors, dealers, and auction houses know that this is a problem. They just don't talk about it, except among themselves. In the end, the collector loses. We want to be clear that we think the major grading services do a valiant job and we can't imagine what the landscape of the marketplace would look like without them. That doesn't mean there are no problems. At the end of the day, we have this advice: "Buy the card, not the holder."

3) REA highly recommends reading the just-released book "Operation Bullpen, The Inside Story of the Biggest Forgery Scam in American History". If you collect autographs, or have an interest in the field in any way, (or just like a great crime-related book), this book is required reading. This is a great book that we think every collector should read. You can order the book online at www.OperationBullpen.com or call Southampton Books at (707) 747-4705.

REA has never been shy about calling attention to what we think are significant problems and issues facing the field. It is our hope that openly communicating about issues which deserve attention, which are so important to so many people, will help us to come up with better ways to address these issues, and in the long run will have a positive impact. That's how progress is made. Your ideas and suggestions are always welcome.

Sincerely,

Robert Edward Auctions LLC

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Robert Edward Auctions, LLC is a one of the world's leading specialty auction houses, devoted exclusively to the sale of rare baseball cards, memorabilia, and Americana.

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