1951 Bowman Mantle Brings $220,150 in Record-Setting Memory Lane Auction

1939 Play Ball Ted Williams #92 1954 Topps Henry Aaron #128

Bidding extended into the early morning hours of the Friday before the Labor Day holiday weekend, and when the dust settled, a 1951 Bowman Mickey Mantle rookie card graded PSA 9 (mint) had reached a new plateau. The card sold for $220,150 in Memory Lane Inc's 2013 Summer Auction. The price includes a 19% buyer's premium.

The Mantle card was part of the Graham Rookie Card Collection sold by the southern California-based auction company. Dozens of mint and gem mint cards of the biggest icons in baseball history were part of the 20-year accumulation by an advanced collector. Also among the cards from the collection was a 1916 M101-5 Babe Ruth (EX+) which sold for $98,175 and a 1939 Play ball #92 Ted Williams PSA 9, which realized $57,643.

Several record-setting prices were attained when the final bids were placed in the auction. Total sales were $1,461,790.

"We are very excited by the activity and the prices realized," said Memory Lane's J.P. Cohen. "The market is very strong for high end key cards. There were a number of new bidders who participated in the auction which is exciting to see."

Two key cards from the 1948 Bowman Baseball set sold for more than $33,000 combined: A Stan Musial PSA 9 rookie card brought $19,881 while a Yogi Berra rookie card, also graded PSA 9, ended at $13,554.

The other major rookie card in the '51 Bowman set, Willie Mays, was also offered in the auction-this one in PSA 8 (near mint-mint) grade. It sold for $19,881.

1951 Bowman Mickey Mantle #253 1951 Bowman Willie Mays #305
1955 Topps Sandy Koufax #123 1968 Topps Mets Rookies #177 (J.Koosman/N.Ryan)

Cards from the mid-1950s were very strong. A 1954 Topps Hank Aaron rookie card graded PSA 9 sold for $36,023 while an Ernie Banks rookie card realized $29,109.

Three key cards from the 1955 Topps set sold for more than $71,000 including:

  • Sandy Koufax PSA 9 $41,973
  • Harmon Killebrew PSA 9 $16,545
  • Roberto Clemente PSA 8 $13,236

Several Hall of Fame rookie cards from the 1960s drew strong interest from bidders including a PSA 10 1961 Ron Santo, which sold for a whopping $11,300 and a PSA 9 1968 Topps Nolan Ryan, sold for $15,986.

1966 Green Bay Packers Football

Even mid-1970's PSA 10 rookie cards will bring serious attention from Set Registry collectors. Case in point: an eye-popping $11,718 price on the 1976 Topps Dennis Eckersley.

Several lots of vintage sports memorabilia also found new homes through the auction including a Vince Lombardi-era team-signed Green Bay Packers "Duke" football which sold for $7,016.

Memory Lane is now accepting consignments for its our next I Own it Now catalog. The deadline will be end of September. The company's winter auction will take place in December with consignments currently being accepted for that as well. Contact them by phone at 877.606.LANE (5263) or via the Memory Lane website (http://www.memorylaneinc.com).