Hunt Auctions readies the DiMaggio Collection for

DiMaggioDugoutPhotobw.jpgHunt Auctions will auction the personal collection of Joe DiMaggio on May 19-20 at the Marriott Marquis Hotel in Times Square, New York City. This historic offering of more than 1,100 lots covers the life and career of DiMaggio, beginning with his roots in San Francisco, continuing with his storied years with the New York Yankees, and culminating with his post-career days as a baseball ambassador and revered cultural icon. All auction items will be on display for public viewing three days prior to the sale from May 16-18 at the Marriott.

Session 1: Friday, May 19 at 1 p.m.
Featuring a number of items from DiMaggio’s post-career life, the early session on Friday is accessible to collectors at every level, Hunt officials said. Among the more affordable items are DiMaggio’s credit and identification cards, golf bags, balls and trophies, presentational jewelry, Old-Timer’s Day trophies and signed baseballs, commemorative black bats, and his personal scrapbook collection chronicling his career.

Session highlights include an impressive 51-inch tall trophy and related album presented to DiMaggio on “Joe DiMaggio” Day on Oct. 1, 1949 ($15,000-$20,000 pre-auction estimate), and a Cartier “Greatest Living Player” presentational humidor presented to DiMaggio on July 13, 1985 ($5,000-$7,500).

Session 2: Friday, May 19 at 6 p.m.
The second session on Friday highlights DiMaggio’s military service during WWII and later trips to the Orient with Lefty O’Doul and Marilyn Monroe. Items up for sale include his U.S. Army dog tag, canteen, uniform patches, cigarette lighters, military orders, his U.S. Military uniform worn during a Goodwill Tour of Vietnam in the 1960s, travel documents, and several photographs.

Featured items in the session include several All-Star Game presentational pieces from 1936 (tie bar), 1937 (pocketknife), 1938 (charm necklace), 1946 (tie bar), 1947 (wristwatch), 1948 (desk clock), 1949, 1950, 1951 (boxes), and 1977 (ring), his 2,000th-hit ball from June 21, 1950, and his 1947 MVP Award plaque ($150,000-$250,000).

Session 3: Saturday, May 20 at 10 a.m.
In commemoration of his various achievements on the field, session three contains some of the most significant honors Joe was ever awarded. Up for bid is DiMaggio’s replica set of  Yankees World Series rings ($10,000-$15,000 each), his 1939 and 1941 MVP award pocket watches ($50,000-$75,000 and $75,000-$100,000, respectively), DiMaggio’s 1969 “Greatest Living Player” award set ($15,000-$20,000), his Presidential Medal of Freedom With Distinction ($7,500-$10,000), and (4) All-America Board of Baseball certificates signed by Babe Ruth from 1937-40.

Session Three also includes what is arguably the most significant item in the auction: DiMaggio’s 1951 World Series home uniform – the last uniform he ever wore as a professional ballplayer (estimate upon request).

Session 4: Saturday, May 20 at 3 p.m.
Although session four touches on some of the greatest moments in DiMaggio’s career, including his 56-game hit streak with the Yankees and his 62-game streak with the San Francisco Seals, Marilyn Monroe, in classic pop icon fashion, captures top billing. Included is their original marriage certificate from 1954 ($10,000-$15,000), two letters handwritten to DiMaggio, one of which Joe carried in his wallet ($20,000-$30,000 each), the U.S. passport Marilyn used during her trip to the Orient with Joe to entertain the troops ($30,000-$40,000), a Marilyn Monroe photograph signed “I love you Joe” ($30,000-$40,000), DiMaggio’s handwritten journal with notes regarding Monroe circa 1955 ($10,000-$15,000), and a Monroe original painting by Jon Whitcomb, circa 1958 from DiMaggio’s Beach St. home in San Francisco ($20,000-$30,000). 

Other highlights from the final session:

  • Joe DiMaggio record breaking baseball from Game No. 45 of the 56-game hit streak ($50,000-$75,000)
  • Ken Keltner’s glove used in the July 17, 1941, game ending the 56-game streak ($20,000-$30,000)
  • DiMaggio’s “Babe Ruth Sultan of Swat Award” ($50,000-$75,000)
  • DiMaggio’s Hall-of-Fame induction ring ($15,000-$25,000))
  • DiMaggio’s 61-game hit streak presentational pocketwatch from 1933 ($30,00-$40,000)
  • DiMaggio’s 1935 Pacific Coast League MVP trophy ($20-$30K)
  • 1932 San Francisco Boys Club championship ring ($5,00-$7,500)
  • DiMaggio Yankee Stadium monument plaque (estimate upon request)

Apart from the highlights, each session also offers a number of affordable items, from signed baseballs and photos, to decorative pieces from DiMaggio’s home, to less significant awards and jewelry items.

“The sale truly offers something for everyone, with $200 items for the entry-level collector, as well as six-figure pieces for the most advanced collector,” David Hunt, company president.

All items may be viewed in person in the Manhattan Ballroom of the Marriott Marquis on Tuesday, May 16 and Wednesday, May 17 from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Thursday, May 18 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The entire Live Auction catalog may be viewed online at www.huntauctions.com. Bids and catalog orders may be placed through the website or by calling (610) 524-0822.

Hunt Auctions, Inc. is currently accepting consignments for future auctions, including the 2006 Major League Baseball All-Star FanFest Live Auction.

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