Wisconsin auction nets $5,000+ for low-grade comics

WITTENBERG, Wis. – A Nov. 29 estate auction conducted by Chuilli’s Auction Service, was highlighted by several lots of Golden and Silver Age comic books, including a number of key issues. Active bidding ended with more than $5,000 in sales.

Many of the comics were offered in multi-issue lots, with the bidding beginning with the choice of those lots. The winning bidder, with a bid of $80, snapped up 19 of the lots, which were mainly made up of Silver Age titles.

A lot consisting of John Wayne Adventure Comics #13, #20, and #21, as well an early issue of Gold Key’s Star Trek, closed at $200. The John Wayne #13 and #20 were in Fine, with the other issues in lesser grade.

Among the individual lots was a copy of Phantom Lady #17 (Apr 48), the issue featured in Fredric Wertham’s 1954 attack on comics, Seduction of the Innocent. The copy, in Poor to Fair- condition, had a damaged spine, drawing on the cover, and a cover piece missing. In Near Mint condition, the issue is valued at $3,500; this copy brought $170.

A copy of All Winners Comics #1 (Aug 48) in low grade sold for $300.

A Fine condition copy of Showcase #10 (Oct 57), the second Lois Lane issue, sold for $460 with a pair of collectors driving up the price. (A Near Mint copy is valued at $3,000.)

A brittle copy of MLJ’s Special Comics #1 (Win 41) sold for $300. As interested bidders handled the issue, pieces flaked from it. Another brittle copy, Fantastic Comics #22 (Sep 41), sold for $50.

One of the nicest issues in the sale, Jungle Jo #1 (May 50), had white pages, but a few cover dings kept it in the Fine range, and it sold for $130. (A Near Mint copy is valued at $400.)

One item that didn’t go for as much as expected was a mid-grade copy of Motion Picture Comics #110 (May 52), which closed at $65. (A Near Mint copy is valued at $250.)

A Poor condition copy of Batman #52 (Apr 49) sold for $160. (In Near Mint, the issue, which features a Joker appearance, is worth $900.) Copies of Batman’s other Golden Age title, Detective Comics, were also on the sale. A copy of #95 (Jan 45), had a pulled staple and sold for $70, while a copy of #268 (Jun 59), sold for $25.

The Man of Steel fared comparably, with a mid-grade copy of Superman #33 (Mar 45) selling for $190 and a lower-grade copy of #63 (Mar 50) closing at $40. A Very Good copy of Superman’s Girl Friend Lois Lane #3 (Aug 58) sold for $110, while a similar-grade copy of #7 (Feb 59) closed at $75.

Atomic bomb-themed comics were also available, with a copy of Atomic War! #1 (Nov 52) in Fine condition selling for $290, while a Very Good copy of Atomic Bomb #1 (1945, the only issue published) sold for $150.

John Wayne Adventure Comics #3 (Jun 50) rode off into the sunset at $100, despite a large stain that could have been mold on its back cover.

Chuilli’s Auction Service has recently held, in the Wittenberg area of central Wisconsin, a number of auctions containing comics. The firm charges Wisconsin state sales tax but does not charge a buyer’s premium. More information on upcoming auctions is available at www.chuillisauction.com.

Photos courtesy Heritage Auction Galleries


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