The biggest Fall Auction in Robert Edward Auctions’ history delivered big numbers across the board Sunday night as the sale featuring more than 2300 lots of sports cards and memorabilia realized in excess of $6.6 million after the dust settled.
“The results of this auction affirmed that the market for quality cards and memorabilia is as strong as ever,” said REA President Brian Dwyer.
The first T206 Ty Cobb with Ty Cobb back from the legendary “Lucky 7” find to be offered at auction led the way with the PSA 1.5 example reaching a final price of $192,000 including the buyer’s premium. Twenty-seven bids were placed on the card, which came from the remarkable discovery earlier this year. “This was a stunning card with a remarkable story, and bidders really appreciated that combination, which ultimately led to a record-setting price,” said Dwyer.
Babe Ruth continued to cement his place as the hottest name in the hobby as a 1916 M101-5 Sporting News rookie card graded SGC 40 realized $168,000 and a PSA 8 1933 Goudey #181 Babe Ruth hit $72,000.
Mickey Mantle was also a popular target of collectors as a 1951 Bowman rookie card graded PSA 8 selling for $156,000 and several low-grade 1952 Topps cards garnered lots of looks, including a PSA 1 example, which hammered at $20,400—the highest price ever at auction for the card in that grade.
High-end memorabilia generating interest included a 1967 Roberto Clemente Pittsburgh Pirates road jersey ($84,000), a ball signed by Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig ($45,000), and a 1964 Mickey Mantle game-used bat ($33,000).
Additional sales included:
1888 N162 Goodwin Champions Complete Set (#1 SGC Set Registry): $96,000
1951 Bowman #305 Willie Mays Rookie PSA 8: $66,000
1909-1911 T206 White Border Ty Cobb Bat On Shoulder PSA 8: $54,000
1952 Bowman Uncut Sheet with Mickey Mantle: $54,000
1935 National Chicle #34 Bronko Nagurski PSA 8: $39,000
1959 Yoo-Hoo Mickey Mantle PSA 6: $39,000
1911 Addie Joss Day Panorama: $33,000
1895 Cleveland Spiders Imperial Photograph with Cy Young: $27,000
For many years, Robert Edward Auctions conducted a single auction every spring until in 2013, the Fall Auction was added to the auction calendar. Dwyer says the 2016 event set records for the most lots, the most bidders, the most bids, the most winners, and the highest-grossing sales. Nearly 24,000 bids were placed throughout the course of the sale, and 805 different winners walked away with at least one item. Three lots exceeded six figures and 108 items hammered at more than $10,000.
Also new this auction was a modernized auction-closing method in which extended bidding began at Noon Sunday and continued throughout the day, ending prior to Midnight on the east coast.
“Closing the auction in the middle of night is a holdover from the days of conducting auction without cell phones, computers, and the modern conveniences that make tracking the auction on the go the easy proposition that it is today. We wanted to take a proactive approach to closing the auction and bring it into the 21st century,” said Dwyer. “The numbers tell the story—more bidders were engaged because the auction ended while they were awake and the activity was stronger than it’s ever been on closing night.”
REA is already assembling the Spring 2017 sale slated to take place in April. For more information on prices realized in the Fall auction, to request a free catalog, or to receive a free appraisal of items for consignment, visit the company’s website.