Skip to main content

Hake receives lifetime achievement award

Renown political memorabilia authority and pioneer of the collectibles auction industry, Ted Hake, was presented with a lifetime achievement award by the American Political Items Collectors’ (APIC) group July 9, during the the organization's national convention.

HARRISBURG, Pa. – Ted Hake, founder of Hake’s Americana & Collectibles, was honored with a lifetime achievement award at the American Political Items Collectors’ (APIC) 2016 National Convention. The prestigious award was presented at a July 9 banquet highlighting a 5-day series of club-sponsored events headquartered at the Harrisburg Hilton.

Regarded as a top expert on political memorabilia and a trailblazer of America’s collectibles industry,

Ted Hake

Ted Hake at the Hake’s Americana & Collectibles booth at the American Political Items Collectors 2016 National Convention. (Photo courtesy of Hake’s Americana & Collectibles)

Hake launched his Hake’s Americana auction business in 1967. At that time, there were only three national publications serving collectors and no auction houses at all that dealt exclusively in 20th-century American pop culture.

Hake issued his first presidential campaign-item sales lists while employed by General Electric at the 1964-65 New York World’s Fair. “My first auction sold 99 items and grossed $193.67,” Hake recalled. “Had I been told then that collectibles would become an industry measured in billions, I’m certain my reaction would have been, ‘Really?’ – from little acorns…”

In the fall of 1965, Hake entered New York University’s graduate film program, and in 1967, he transferred to the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Pennsylvania. Hake received his master’s degree in 1968.

Over the years, Ted Hake has documented his considerable expertise by authoring 18 reference books and price guides on a variety of pop-culture topics, from campaign artifacts to comic characters. His lifelong interest in Disneyana led to the publication of the quintessential Official Price Guide to Disney Collectibles.

Hake is a frequent guest on radio shows, was an appraiser on the first two seasons of the PBS series Antiques Roadshow, and was a featured expert on the History Channel’s production History of Toys.

In 2004, Hake sold his auction house to Geppi’s Entertainment Publications & Auctions, but rather than slowing down, he assumed the hands-on role of chief operating officer. Working closely with Hake’s president, Alex Winter, and an accomplished team of pop-culture specialists, Hake’s Americana went on to produce dozens of highly successful auctions, including 10 million-dollar-plus sales from 2011 through 2016. “That’s a far cry from that first $193 auction,” Hake quipped.

Check out a recap of the most recent Hake's auction, featuring Ted Hake and Scott Mussell, Americana specialist at Hake's...

The APIC’s 35-state membership includes former US Presidents, Members of Congress, historians, museum curators, and several broadcast and news journalists. Upon receiving his APIC Lifetime Achievement Award, Hake expressed thanks and gratitude that his efforts to create a comprehensive storehouse of knowledge about political memorabilia by means of his auction catalogs and books had been recognized by fellow collectors.

“Political memorabilia is symbolic of our shared history, our concerns and our conflicts as a nation, going back to Washington's inauguration in 1789. Political items also reflect America’s social history,” Hake said. “Our hobby is loaded with endlessly fascinating and very beautifully designed graphic artifacts – enough to absorb a collector for a lifetime, as I can attest.”

For more information about Hake's Americana & Collectibles, visit