The Rarest Presidential Signature Might Surprise You

Tom Bartsch pinch-hits one more time for editor T.S. O’connell.

Since there is such crossover in Americana items and sports memorabilia auctions, I thought I’d cover some Americana today.

I spoke with Larry Rosenbaum at EAC Gallery about presidential
collectibles and other historic and political items that have been
popping up with more frequency in sports auctions. And I’m not talking
about the 1-of-1 cut sig presidential cards or the other inserts found
in packs today.

I’m talking about real documents with the
presidents’ signatures. Can you guess who the top three are in the
category. Good ahead and think about it.

Got it?

It’s Washington, Lincoln and Jefferson.

OK, now how about the rarest signatures as president? Think it’s the top three mentioned above? Nope.

two rarest signatures as president are William Harrison and James
Garfield. Why you ask? Well, Harrison caught pneumonia at his
inauguration (hey, someone get him a coat!)  and he died 30 days later.
That doesn’t leave a lot of time to have documents signed by Harrison
as president, much less have enough available today in decent condition.

was assassinated while in office, not long after he took the oath, so
the same scenario exists for him as to the rarity of documents with his
signature as president.

I had never thought of it in this
fashion. I just assumed that the holy trinity of presidents were the
most coveted and that was that. If you take a step back and realize the
facts behind the history, it makes sense.

Rosenbaum said a Garfield
signature as president can run into $15,000. That’s quite the jump from
a Garfield signature while he was in the Army that brings $500-$600.

As you can see, signatures of pesidents are actually affordable in the larger view – something else a novice collector might not realize.

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11 thoughts on “The Rarest Presidential Signature Might Surprise You

  1. MarkE on said:

    I wonder if Coach’s Corner will have one just like this in the April auction? I wonder if it will be Auth. by Stat or Chris No-Moral-ASS? HAAHAA!!!

  2. Jim Davis on said:

    They’ll probably have a James Garfield-signed Garfield the Cat sketch.

  3. I wonder, when the FBI Closes down Coach’s Corner what will SCD do? Will they cover the story? They barley mentioned Bill Mastro.

    I see their latest issue s the thinnest one to date.

    What a shame SCD and the Editor have ruined their once-fine publication.

    How much longer can they continue? The losses must be staggering.

    Maybe Coach’s Corner will buy the publication if they have not done so yet.

  4. RichardW on said:

    All you are doing (besides nothing) is giving the Coach consignors some ideas. I hear (former subscriber, as we all are) that you can now fold an SCD into a paper airplane! At least it is good for something. I would line my parrot cage, but I don’t want him reading that biased rag.

  5. Former Subscriber on said:

    Another Coach’s Corner auction just started. This bottomless stash of Picasso art is hysterical. CC is actually correct when they point out that the artwork’s value is "many, many times" the opening bid. Opening bid is $0.

  6. Harry on said:

    That youtube video is fantastic! Tom is a GOD!!!

  7. Zembol on said:

    I would love to see a showdown between T.S. and that guy Tom. Tom would demolish him!!!

  8. on said:

    I would like to see a show-down as well, however this won’t happen since TS is deleting some of TomTresh2’s comments. I wish TS could be a "MENCH" and delete coach’s corner from SCD. Until he does, TS has lost all credibility and scd will continue to loose readers and advertisers. Have you seen how thin SCD has become?

  9. MarkE on said:

    Last one a seen must have been 12 pages long! How do they stay in business?

  10. from the website of autographalert:

    SCD “Sports Collectors Digest”
    Where Have You Gone?

    The April 10th issue of SCD has been published and it does not come as a surprise to many that this magazine has been reduced to a mere 38 pages. That includes the two covers which counts for 8 pages.

    This collapse was predicted years ago and SCD management was advised how to correct their obvious problems. Recommendations from seasoned hobbyists were basically ignored.

    Just a few years ago it took an entire afternoon to read the publication which can now be read in minutes. Of the 38 pages, 27 are advertisements and that is with the disappearance of many of the advertisers (which was also very predictable). The Vendor’s Stand is down to an embarrassing three-quarter’s of a page.

    One thing hasn’t changed and that is the $4.99 Cover Price or $6.99 in Canada.

    Emails to Dean Listle, Publisher, requesting the number of paid SCD subscriber’s remain unanswered.


    I wrote to autograph alert and stated:

    Good job on your latest entry,

    however, I feel my submission last week could have had a greater impact.

    i believe while your story was good, it missed its mark.

    if you browse over to SCD’s web site you will see an eruption of comments under TS O’Connell’s articles. The comments complain about coaches corner and SCD.

    you will see dozens of entries as readership continues to revolt and turn away (That’s the real story).

    finally, one member, tired of his comments being deleted and tired of being ignored went on to youtube to share is story of scd of coaches corner. I sent you the link last week.

    please do a story on this,

    Just thought all the readers would like to know.

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