One of fewer than 20 known copies of the 1910 Old Mill Tobacco Joe Jackson pre-rookie card sold for $492,000 late Thursday night as Heritage Auctions wrapped up the first night of its three-day Spring Sports Collectibles Sale.
Graded 3.5 by SGC, the card had been in the same North Carolina family since the time of issue, thought to be lost at one time with the rest of the century-old cards in a hand-me-down collection. It’s one of fewer than 20 known to exist and one of the four best graded by SGC.
It wasn’t just old baseball cards that were bringing big bucks, though.
Less than three weeks after a PSA 10 1986-87 Fleer Michael Jordan rookie card sold for a record $51,600, Heritage sold another copy for a whopping $96,000. Jordan’s card, actually issued two years after his NBA debut season, has been the hottest card of any kind in the hobby over the past month.
The far lesser-known 1985-86 Star Co. Jordan, part of a limited-run Chicago Bulls team set and graded BGS NM-MT+ 8.5, was estimated to sell for $8,000. Instead it sold for $15,199.20.
Other modern cards also sold for eye-popping prices. A 2010 Bowman Chrome Christian Yelich Superfractor autograph graded PSA 9, more than doubled the pre-sale estimate of $50,000, selling for $111,000.
A 2011 Bowman Chrome Superfractor auto of Francisco Lindor also broke the six-figure mark at $102,000.
All told, Thursday night’s sale brought in $8,025,974, which toppled the pre-sale estimate of $6 million
“The card market,” said Chris Ivy, Heritage’s Director of Sports Auctions, “is as hot as I’ve ever seen it.”
The second highest price in the auction’s opening night was achieved by one of 35 PSA 8 copies of the iconic 1952 Topps Mickey Mantle, which sold for $360,000. Just 14 rank higher on PSA’s Population Report. An SGC 6.5 copy of the same card–actually owned by Mantle at one point years ago–netted $66,000.
A 1941 Play Ball Ted Williams, one of only nine graded PSA 9, went for $120,000–blasting past the pre-sale estimate of $50,000 while a Pee Wee Reese rookie card from the same set, one of only two graded 9 –went for $72,000.
A pair of Jordan-worn cleats, dating back to his 1994 season in the sun as a Birmingham Baron, is on deck for Friday night’s sale and already sitting at $27,600.
“It is safe to say that the market for Michael Jordan has never been better than it is now, and I don’t think it’s going back,” Ivy said.
Other sales Thursday night included:
- 1962 Topps football wax box (24 packs) $90,000
- 1954 Wilson Wieners Ted WilliamsPSA 8 $72,000
- 1965 Philadelphia football wax box (24 packs) $37,200
- 1970 Topps football series 2 wax box (24 packs) $37,200
- 1963 Topps Pete Rose PSA 9 $63,000
- 1986-87 Fleer basketball wax box $63,000
The second part of the auction takes place Friday with Part III scheduled to wrap up Saturday at HA.com/Sports.