OCEANSIDE, N.Y. – A 3-volume set of the iconic Lord of the Rings trilogy by J.R.R. Tolkien (The Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers and The Return of the King), with one of the books signed by the author himself, sold for $14,600 at a two-day weekend multi-estate sale held Oct. 3-4 by Philip Weiss Auctions. The books were in very good condition and all had their original dust jackets.
The set was one of about 1,300 lots that changed hands over the course of the weekend. Offered were fresh-to-the-market items in an impressive array of categories, to include stamps, coins, rare books, autographs, postcards, sports items, comics, comic art, rock ‘n’ roll memorabilia, pop culture items and more. The sale was held at the Philip Weiss Auctions showroom in Oceanside.
Philip Weiss estimated the crowd at around 250-350 people over the course of the two days. He said an additional 800-1,000 people placed bids online, through Proxibid.com and the firm’s Web site, at www.prwauctions.com. Also, about 3,000 absentee bids were recorded, while phone bidding was brisk both days. The sale grossed approximately $475,000. “It was a very active weekend,” Mr. Weiss said.
Following are additional highlights from the auction. All prices quoted include a 13 percent buyer’s premium.
The top lot of the sale was an original pen-and-ink daily comic strip by the renowned illustrator Charles Schulz. Dated Sept. 6, 1954, the strip was a great example of an early Peanuts comic, with a story that featured Peppermint Patty and Pigpen. It gaveled for $28,250. Another original Peanuts daily strip by Schulz – dated Apr. 30, 1977, and featuring Peppermint Patty practicing her math – hit $12,400.
Staying in the comic art category, an original Tarzan Sunday page by Burne Hogarth, dated Aug. 25, 1940, and featuring a story titled Deadly Passage, with Tarzan swimming for his life, soared to $11,550. Another Tarzan Sunday page by Hogarth, dated May 12, 1940, and featuring a story titled The Lone Avenger, with Tarzan battling Prince Jagurt, hit $9,040. Both comics were missing their stat titles.
Disney animation cels did extremely well. A Courvoisier cel set-up of Brer Rabbit from the film Song of the South, in the original matte with an inscription signed by Disney, fetched $8,725; a production cel from Snow White, showing three dwarves on a Courvoisier background, rose to $4,600; and an enormous cel of Monstro from the movie Pinocchio on a Courvoisier background made $4,900.
Speaking of Disney, the original art for a map of Disneyland – an oil and pastel on board work executed in 1958 and believed to have been painted by Sam McKim (known as “the cartographer of Disneyland”) realized $3,600. The map measured 22 inches by 40 inches and was marked Walt Disney Productions” on a paper label.
A 1973 Salvador Dali book, titled Les Diners de Gala and inscribed by the Surrealist painter to model and actress Genevieve Gillaizeau, with an original drawing, topped out at $3,500. The book boasted a clean dust jacket and provenance. Also, a T-204 Ramly Cigarettes baseball card of pitching great Walter Johnson – a key card to a popular set and graded SGC 40 VG 3 – brought $8,300.
A turn-of-the-century poster for the legendary magician Kellar by H.A. Thomas, depicting Kellar’s lithographic image and measuring 28 1/2 inches by 18 inches, achieved $5,650. The poster had some staining and tears, but its rarity overrode the imperfections. Also, an 1853 slavery broadside, offering a $150 reward for “the Return of My Negro Man Arch” (Fairfax County, Va.), earned $4,520.
Philip Weiss Auctions’ next big sale will be another weekend event, planned for Nov. 14-15, with 10 a.m. start times both days. The Nov. 14 session will feature 250 lots of baby boomer material from the Steve Rathkopf collection, over 300 lots of toy trains, mostly mint in the box, plus unopened set boxes, to include Marklin, Lionel, LGB and more. Other toys and trains will also be sold.
The Nov. 15 session will kick off with an important military sale, featuring the lifetime collection of Edward Golaski. Featured will be hundreds of lots of rifles, guns, swords, knives, hats, important European military medals and paraphernalia. Also offered will be a collection of Civil War cartes de visites (many identified and signed, with an emphasis on Indiana and Illinois Regiments).
Also sold will be a rare Smith & Wesson revolving rifle, Sharp rifles, a British Waterloo medal, a selection of Colt pistols, World War II German items and more. The session will also include a single-owner collection of presidential memorabilia, to include Teddy Roosevelt material, porcelains and other historical items. Also auctioned will be high-graded U.S. currency, including Gem Educational Notes.
The sale will also feature over 200 lots from the Ken Schultz estate, to include postcards, posters, ocean liner models, silverware and more; a single-owner Zeppelin collection; more from the Weaver circus collection; Coca-Cola items, to include a promotional phone card; and a brick from the famed Cavern Club in England, signed by slain Beatle John Lennon at one of his performances there in 1962.
Then, a huge auction featuring quality, fresh-to-the-market merchandise from prominent local estates and important collections is planned for Nov. 27, beginning at 1 p.m. Just a few of the highlights include a monumental Francois Linke four-door dore bronze mounted cabinet with ram’s head and lyres, and a mirror plateau with French ormolu mounts by G. Bointaburet (Paris, circa 1880).
Other highlights will include a pair of F. Barbedienne bronze plaques, a 19th-century gilt bronze plaque with dancing putti, Sevres hand-painted plaques, a signed bronzed and enamel box, 19th-century Oriental porcelain, hand-painted and enameled vases, a monumental gilt bronze centerpiece, nice French porcelains and decorative bronze, Oriental rugs and a gilt French Trimue mirror with top center painting.
From the fine art category, offerings that day will include a Hudson River large-size oil painting attributed to Girlando Marsiglia (one of the 15 founders of the National Academy), a collection of Art Nouveau and other posters, and more.
In December, Philip Weiss Auctions will hold a “Let’s Go Hog Wild” sale, featuring a single-owner collection of pig memorabilia (toys, antiques, bronzes, more).
Philip Weiss Auctions is always accepting quality consignments for future sales. To consign an item, an estate or an entire collection, you may call them directly, at 516-594-0731, or you can e-mail them at email@example.com.
To learn more about the company and its calendar of upcoming sales, to include the Nov. 14-15 weekend event, visit www.prwauctions.com.
Photos courtesy Philip Weiss Auctions.