Tuesday, 5 August 2008

1909 baseball card makes $1.62 million at auction

An Arkansas man bought a 1909 Honus Wagner baseball card for $1.62 million at a memorabilia auction in Chicago.

The new owner of the T206 Wagner card was a man from Little Rock, Ark., according to auctioneer Doug Allen, chief operating officer of Mastro Auctions of Burr Ridge.

The record price for a baseball card is $2.8 million—paid in 2007 for a near-mint condition Wagner card released in 1909 by the American Tobacco Company.

Wagner's card was among the first of hundreds of cards of major league players produced by the American Tobacco Co. and included in packages of cigarettes.

Unlike other players, however, Wagner quickly demanded his card be withdrawn.

Theories vary as to why, with one being that he didn't believe American Tobacco paid him enough.
There are fewer than 100 Wagner baseball cards in existence, said Julie Stoklosa, a spokeswoman for Mastro Auctions, and fewer than 10 are in excellent condition.

Allen said even the lowest graded Wagner baseball cards can fetch more than $150,000.

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