The National Sports Collectors Convention “National”, recently held at the Baltimore Convention Center, has come and gone but it certainly has excited many new and prospective sports and entertainment collectors in and around the Baltimore market.
Approximately thirty-thousand (30,000) fans and collectors attended the five (5) day event, Aug 4-8th hosted by Baltimore for the very first time. Thanks in large part to PressBox Media, Comcast Sportsnet, Fox 1370am Radio and The Baltimore Sun, many first time collectors and those who were interested in finding out more about collecting were made aware of this once in a lifetime experience.
Schulte Auctions was one of the many local (Baltimore) “National” exhibitors set up to display, promote and sell collectible merchandise. It was exciting for us to meet and talk with so many first time and potential collectors from our market. Since the event concluded we have been inundated with calls from beginner collectors, including many who have vintage items handed down to them but don’t know the process to get them authenticated, appraised and sold.
In order to make the wisest decisions concerning your buy or sell collectible future, beginner and prospective collectors should adhere to the following and then proceed with caution until you have become familiar with the collectibles market. Here are two (2) topic suggestions for you to consider;
1. Authentication is the most important consideration in collecting. Whether you’re purchasing or selling sports / entertainment signatures or vintage memorabilia you need to have a reputable company authenticate your item(s). Companies such as Schulte Sports provide tamper-proof holograms on items they witnessed the athlete signed first-hand. JSA Authentication (spenceloa.com) and PSA / DNA (psacard.com) are two (2) companies recognized for authenticating third-party signatures such as Ruth, Gehrig, Abraham Lincoln, Frank Sinatra or Jack Dempsey, just to name a few. When it comes to authentication of game-used equipment several companies such as PSA /DNA and individuals including Denny Esken (game-used fielder’s gloves) and Lou Lampson (game-used jerseys) opinions are respected and accepted by the collectible industry. When it comes to authenticating original photos and graded trading cards, PSA / DNA and Beckett are sought out by collectors nationwide.
2. Find a Mentor – check the Hobby sports collectible trade publications (Beckett.com, SportsCollectorsDigest.com, SportsCollectorsDaily.com, AuctionReport.com) to find out who advertises, who is active in the market, who may be located near you. Call them, introduce yourself, and get to know them. Ask questions, ask for references, see if they participate in shows and plan on visiting them in person. Take your time; find someone who you feel is professional, experienced, knowledgeable, respected and willing to explain the buying and selling process. There are very reputable individuals and companies out there willing to help. Spend the time to find that right person(s) you feel comfortable with.
Schulte Auctions Sells Iconic Babe Ruth Signed Photographs
Schulte Auctions featured many great vintage sports memorabilia in its recent August on-line auction but none more significant than five (5) images Babe Ruth signed and personalized to his sister Mamie (Mary Margaret Ruth-Mobley).
One image included Babe in a workout tank top with a personalized note to his sister dated July 21, 1928. In addition, this lot included a separate photo of Mamie actually holding the signed Babe Ruth photo. This lot generated 39 bids and sold for $25,928, including the 15% buyer's premium.
In addition, a one-of-a-kind Lou Gehrig photo signed to Mamie generated $12,860. The five Babe Ruth signed photos and the one Lou Gehrig signed photo, all signed to Mamie, generated $62,131 total.
A 1958 Baltimore Colt's team signed football went for $9,662, a book signed by hall of Famers including Honus Wagner, Paul Waner, Pie Traynor and Clark Griffith sold for $4,959 while a Mike Curtis game-used Baltimore Colts helmet brought $4,239.
Schulte Auctions conducts monthly on-line auctions featuring vintage sports and entertainment signed and un-signed memorabilia. Consignments are welcome anytime.