Collectible Summary for October 26 2010

A collection of stories from Paul Fraser Collectibles:

Only block to feature the rare US ‘Type 1b stamp’ sells for $50,000
Sold for comfortably above its pre-sale estimate was this US one cent blue block of four, with a fifth stamp attached.

Dated to 1851, this is certainly no ordinary block; it happens to be the only recorded use of a block of 1851 one cent stamps from the top row of the first-ever plate.

Consequently, it is also the only block to include the rare and coveted imperforate Type 1b stamp. It can be seen in the block’s upper left, and is one of the best examples of its kind. Read the Full Story >>

Medal from the greatest single moment in American sports’ auctions in Dallas

Not one but two celebrated icons of sport will star in Heritage Auctions’ final Signature Sports Collectibles auction of 2010, November 4-5.

The first major highlight is Lou Gehrig’s 1927 Yankees jersey. Gehrig – aka “the great Iron Horse” – wore his jersey during the most famous season in New York Yankees history in 1927. His historic jersey is estimated at $600,000 or more.

Appearing alongside it is the only gold medal from the 1980 Lake Placid, NY, US Olympic hockey team ever to be offered at public auction. Read the Full Story >>

UPDATE: November 5, 2010: The 1980 U.S. Hockey “Miracle on Ice” Olympic Gold Medal Presented to Mark Wells sold for a final price of $310,700 (including buyer’s premium) and the 1927 Lou Gehrig Game Worn New York Yankees Jersey went for $717,000.00 (including buyer’s premium.)

The press release from Heritage Auctions:

“(Dallas, Texas) — The first 1980 “Miracle on Ice” Olympic hockey gold medal ever offered in a public auction sold for $310,700 Friday night, November 5, 2010. The winning bid from a sports collector was three times higher than the pre-sale estimate, according to the auctioneer, Heritage Auctions ( in Dallas, Texas.

“This gold medal was awarded to Mark Wells, then 21 years old and a center for the U.S. hockey team. He privately sold it earlier this year to an anonymous collector who consigned it to our sports memorabilia auction,” said Chris Ivy, Director of Heritage Sports Collectibles.

“The winning bidder is a Western United States rancher who enjoys many categories of collectibles, but this was his first purchase from our sports department. He is very excited to own this iconic piece of American sporting history,” said Greg Rohan, President of Heritage Auctions.

“He was one of 16 collectors bidding for the medal online or by telephone who took it from its opening bid of $25,000 to the winning level of $310,700.”

The price includes a 19.5 percent buyer’s premium paid by all winning bidders in the sports memorabilia auction that included the prized medal.

“We originally estimated it would easily sell for $100,000 because this was the first time any of the Olympic gold medals awarded to the 20 players of the 1980 ‘Miracle on Ice’ U.S. hockey team that defeated the Soviet Union was ever offered in a public auction,” said Ivy.

With only five seconds left in the final period of the 1980 Olympics hockey game at Lake Placid, sportscaster Al Michaels enthusiastically said the now famous phrase, “Do you believe in miracles…YES!”

The medal, crafted by Tiffany, is accompanied by a letter from Wells in which he wrote: “I hope you cherish this medal as much as I have. I personally cannot think of another piece of memorabilia that has had such a profound effect on the sports world than this precious keepsake.”

For additional information, contact Heritage Auctions at (214) 528-3500, or visit online at

1856-O double eagle coin brings $345,000, after 100 years hidden in Ohio
Graded “extremely fine”, this newly-surfaced specimen starred in Heritage’s Long Beach sale

A recently-discovered specimen of the 1856-O double eagle – graded XF45+*, NGC – was the big star of Heritage’s September US Coin Auction in Long Beach, California.

The 1856-O soared to $345,000 amidst spirited bidding according to the auction house. Overall, Heritage’s sale realised an impressive $13.4 million sales total. Read the Full Story >>

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