Honus Wagner Baseball Card Sells at Auction for $1.23 Million

Honus Wagner T-206 Baseball Card

Photo Credit Goodwin & Co.

A rare Honus Wagner T-206 baseball card sold for $1.23 million at an auction on Friday, April 20, 2012. Auction house Goodwin & Co. reports that the “Holy Grail” of baseball cards sold for more than four times its pre-auction estimated sales price at $300,000. Fourteen bids raised the final price of the coveted sports card to a whopping $1,232,466.34.

The grade of the sold card is VG (very good), according to an article posted April 20, 2012, by Sports Collectors Daily. An extraordinary amount of attention was drawn to this auction when the Associated Press began covering this story. Many of the bidders were newcomers to sports memorabilia auctions.

"A lot of people were talking about investment and return on investment," said Bill Shelton, who assisted Goodwin & Co. with the auction, in an interview with Sports Collectors Daily. "I think people are starting to see these high-end cards in the same terms as art and antiques. It is believed no more than five or six dozen [of the] Wagner cards have survived and most are ‘beaters.’”

“Beaters” are cards with creases, rounded corners, or uneven trimming. The card, which was sold by Goodwin, was among the top six known to have sold publicly. The effect this singular card has on the market of collectible sports cards is remarkable.

Goodwin & Co. reports that this is the only time since 2009 a Honus Wagner T-206 has been offered a “VG-3” grade or better at a public auction. That T-206 card sold for $925,000 in July 2009.

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James Rothaar

As an independent contractor, James has written content for and other leading online luxury lifestyle magazines. Rothaar previously served as the senior-tenured staff writer for JustLuxe, having worked with the digital magazine since 2005. He resides in Jacksonville, Florida, and works as an independent marketing consultant and a freelance writer. James Rothaar has an MBA degree...(Read More)

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