A 2007 Topps Allen & Ginter card featuring a lock of George Washington’s hair is proving to be a popular item on eBay.
The descendants of George Washington’s barber could have been rich.
While millions of strands of the First President’s hair were no doubt swept into the garbage pile of history, the surviving examples are now making their way into wax packs where modern day baseball card collectors and history buffs are looking for George Washington hair cards.
Along with pictures of sports and cultural icons much like the original Allen & Ginter cards of the 19th century, Topps’ 2007 Allen & Ginter card set includes such eclectic autographs as Mother Theresa and Admiral Byrd. Among the more rare pulls from the issue are three cards, each featuring a small sample of hair from George Washington. The first of the cards was pulled from an unopened pack by Phoenix, Arizona card dealer Ken Simonis, who has placed it on eBay via Beckett Auctions where it attracted over 40 bids in the first few days of being listed. The current bid as of early Friday morning was $8300.
The hair is said to have been originally obtained from Martha Washington’s side of the family and passed through generations. It was acquired by Topps via the collection of noted hair and autograph collector John Reznikoff. It may sound strange, but collecting hair from famous people was fairly common in the 18th and 19th centuries. Another collection of Washington’s hair, made into a pin, is on display in a museum. Several people sheared strands of Abraham Lincoln’s long black hair moments after his death.
The final price of the Allen & Ginter card is expected to eclipse $10,000, but one eBay seller may have sold the ultimate “relic”…and at a better price. Not only did the dealer have another lock of Washington’s hair, but also small pieces of his casket.