From a T206 Honus Wagner to multiple Babe Ruth signed baseballs to decades-old mint condition Hall of Famers, dozens of high-quality, high-grade and rare pieces of sports memorabilia have been assembled by Memory Lane Inc. over the last few months for its second Own it Now catalog event.
Four times each year, the southern California-based sports memorabilia auction company will offer consigned items available for straight sale. The consignor sets a selling price with a first-come, first-served opportunity available to buyers for two weeks. At the beginning of the third week, potential buyers can then make an offer on any unsold items. Owners of the consigned items will then opt to accept or reject the offer.
Own it Now debuted last fall with several high-end items changing hands including a pristine single-signed Babe Ruth baseball ($160,000), a 1911 T201 Hassan set ($90,000), a PSA 8 1948 Leaf Sid Luckman rookie ($70,000) and a PSA 8 1952 Topps Eddie Mathews ($39,500).
Set to reach collectors’ mailboxes this week, the company’s first Own it Now catalog of 2011 includes a T206 Honus Wagner with an asking price of $325,000. The card’s history dates from an era before grading was fashionable, when a collector tried to have some of its flaws hidden through restoration, a process that was later reversed. The hobby’s ‘holy grail’, T206 Wagners nearly always draw strong interest from advanced collectors and investors.
Also offered is a T206 near set. Missing just 17 cards, each card in this version of “The Monster” has been graded and carries a price of $150,000.
Demand still far outweighs the supply of rare and highly desirable Babe Ruth memorabilia. The catalog includes several Bambino-related pieces including a game-used bat dating to his days with the Boston Red Sox. The Hillerich & Bradsby bat is being offered at $110,000.
There are two Ruth signed baseballs and another featuring the signatures of both Ruth and his legendary Yankees teammate, Lou Gehrig and a 1933 Ruth #149 card graded SGC 92, one of just three at that level with none ever grading higher.
Gehrig is well represented, too. There are two high-grade ’34 Goudeys (one an SGC 96) and a ’32 U.S. Caramel in a deep mix of early vintage gum cards.
One of the finest collections of 1951 Bowman baseball cards ever offered is in this catalog. Missing only the Mickey Mantle rookie card to become a complete set, the group of 323 cards has been graded PSA 8 (nr mint-mt) across the board. It’s offered at $65,000.
Among other rare single cards in the Own it Now sale are a 1948 Leaf Satchel Paige (SGC 92). The graded example of this iconic card from one of the first post-WWII sets, is among the best known examples ($89,995).
There is an 1895 May’s Cap Anson graded near mint ($29, 500), a 1909 T204 Ramly card of Ed Plank graded PSA 8 ($37,500), an SCG 96 1954 Topps Hank Aaron rookie card ($21,995), plus 1952 Topps Mickey Mantle (PSA 4), 1952 Topps Jackie Robinson (PSA 8) and a couple of high grade 1915 Cracker Jack Hall of Famers including Cobb.
Football card collectors will find the second highest-rated 1966 Topps set on PSA’s Registry as well as high-grade sets of the classic 1964-66 Philadelphia Gum football issue. Vintage unopened packs are sprinkled into the catalog as well including a pair of 1961-62 Fleer basketball.
More than five decades after they were used in All-Star Game competition come a pair of remarkable bats: A 1955 Ted Williams ($57,500) and a 1951 Joe DiMaggio ($49, 950).
Sellers pay a 20% premium for sales made under the Own it Now program. Buyers pay nothing over and above the price of the item plus shipping costs.
The event opens Friday, February 18.
Catalogs will be delivered to those on the company’s mailing list this week. To receive a free copy, contact Memory Lane (877.606.LANE (5263) or visit the company’s website.
Memory Lane has also posted over 1800 items on eBay.