A genuine Heisman Trophy, one of the most coveted awards in all of sports, is joined in the Lelands.com 2005 Winter Auction by other items that also hold paramount significance, including a 1921 Babe Ruth game bat and Wayne Gretzky’s first Edmonton Oilers contract, signed on “The Great One’s” 18th birthday.
The Lelands.com 2005 Winter Auction includes more than 1,700 items in an Americana and sports auction. The action will close on Dec. 15-16. All bidding can be done at www.Lelands.com.
The 1941 Heisman Trophy ($50,000 minimum bid), awarded to the University of Minnesota’s Bruce Smith, is one of just six Heisman Trophy awards that have ever found their way into auction. This is the same trophy handed to Smith just two days after the bombing of Pearl Harbor, and was the seventh Heisman awarded overall.
The Ruth bat, thought to be the earliest known Ruth home run bat (and one of four historic bats in the auction) is the same club he used to launch his 52nd home run in that memorable season in which he shattered the previous single-season home run mark with 59 ($25,000). Also in the auction are game bats from Lou Gehrig ($5,000), Tris Speaker ($10,000) and a very rare game-used bat of Jim Thorpe ($25,000).
“This auction offers opportunities that may never be seen again,” said Josh Evans, founder of Lelands.com. “An actual Heisman Trophy, handed to the best player in college football one year, is a rare piece of sports memorabilia that few have ever had the opportunity to even touch, let alone own. The Ruth and Thorpe bats are, quite frankly, two of the most significant pieces of game-used baseball memorabilia we’ve ever handled and are loaded with historical importance. And we’re absolutely thrilled to be able to offer Gretzky’s first Oilers contract.”
There are outstanding pieces that highlight the history of the National Football League, such as an NFL football ($1,000) and an AFL football – both used in Super Bowl II; a lot of (5) Vince Lombardi playbooks when he was offensive coordinator of the New York Giants ($1,000); Lance Alworth’s 1963 AFL Championship ring ($10,000); and a spectacular late 1980s Miami Dolphins game-worn and autographed Dan Marino helmet ($2,000).
If the Ruth bat were not enough, Lelands.com is also offering one of the rarest and most impressive bats to ever surface from Thorpe, widely regarded as America’s greatest athlete. This circa 1918 Louisville Slugger is the only Thorpe signature model game bat known to exist.
In addition to an early 1930s Gehrig game-used bat, the auction also includes another significant bat: a 1928 Tris Speaker game-used and sidewritten Louisville Slugger.
Other prominent baseball items include: 1875 New York Knickerbockers baseball trophy ($25,000); Gil Hodges’ 1955 Brooklyn Dodgers World Series ring ($10,000); famed Brooklyn Dodgers Sym-Phony band megaphone ($7,500); 1947 Brooklyn Dodgers signed photos ($10,000); a Ruth/Gehrig dual-signed ball ($35,000); a 1933 AL All-Star team-signed ball ($5,000); John F. Kennedy signed baseball ($5,000); Mickey Mantle’s personal 500th home run game presentation album ($25,000), plus his album from Mickey Mantle Day ($10,000); five canisters of film with Mantle at bats, including from 1951 ($10,000); a 1934 Tour of Japan baseball signed by Ruth and Gehrig ($10,000); a 1966 Aaron game-worn jacket ($800); and a 1911 single-signed Cy Young ball ($2,000).
In addition to the Gretzky contract, the sale also features an imposing lineup of Hall of Fame hockey sweaters: 1938-39 Bruins jersey worn by Bill Cowley ($5,000); two Phil Esposito gamers from 1970-71 Bruins ($3,000) and 1979-80 Rangers ($3,500); Red Wings jersey that Gordie Howe wore during the last game at Olympia Stadium ($3,000); 1963-64 Dave Keon Maple Leafs jersey ($5,000); Bobby Hull’s WHA 1974-75 Winnipeg and 1975 WHA All-Star jerseys ($3,000 each); and a 1940-41 Bobby Bauer Bruins sweater ($5,000).
Only months removed from the sale of the highest-graded Josh Gibson Toleteros card (SGC 88) ever uncovered for $69,263, Lelands.com is offering yet another impressive Gibson Toleteros, this one is graded PSA 7 ($5,000).
Other significant cards and sets include: one of the finest 1952 Topps BB wax packs known to exist graded NM-MT by GAI ($1,000); a lot of high-grade 1952 Topps Baseball (less Mantle) with PSA-graded stars ($3,000); a group of (57) 1914 B18 “Felt” Blankets with Joe Jackson, Ty Cobb and Walter Johnson; high-grade 1953 Bowman Color Baseball complete set with PSA-graded stars; 1952 Bowman Large Football complete set; six 1970s Topps Football (first series) vending boxes graded Mint by GAI; and a 1951-52 Parkhurst Hockey set.
Several other special items include: a set of Babe Didrickson Zaharias golf clubs ($5,000); an impressive collection of Pele memorabilia, including four jerseys, among them his last Cosmos gamer ($5,000); St. Louis Rams Super Bowl XXIV Lombardi Trophy ($3,000); Ron Turcotte’s signed Secreteriat race-worn silks ($3,500); and a seat from Boston Garden with Parquet floor signed “Bill Russell #6” ($300). Americana and entertainment highlights
This auction features several Gold Records: Elvis Presley for his final No. 1: “Suspicious Minds” ($2,000); Bruce Springsteen for the albums “Born To Run” ($500), “Darkness At The Edge of Town” ($500) and “Greetings From Asbury Park” ($300;) and John Lennon for “(Just Like) Starting Over” ($500), the single released just before his death in 1980.
Also: Elvis’ 1953 high school yearbook ($750) once owned by a classmate and signed by The King; Captain Kirk alternate universe hero tunic and sash from the Star Trek “Mirror Mirror” episode ($7,500); self-winding Edison stock-ticker tape ($8,000); a nine-page letter from Janis Joplin ($3,500); 1965 Bruce Lee contract with three signatures ($3,000); an autographed book signed in 1932 by Amelia Earhardt ($500); and a pair of fence posts ($5,000 each) taken from the Dealy Plaza grassy knoll. For more information, call (516) 409-9700, or go to www.lelands.com.