VINELAND, N.J. – The second sale of a world-class toy collection raked in $2.2 million, led by a Marklin Battleship that sold for more than $200,000.
Bertoia Auctions recently had Part II of the Samuel Downey Jr. collection of European tin rarities and boats. The first sale was in March.
A Marklin Battleship, La Plata, which Bertoia said was likely the crown jewel of Downey’s boat collection, was the top lot after a final price of $204,000, which was tens of thousands more than its estimate of $50,000-$70,000. Hailing from Argentina, this battleship is in museum-grade condition and extremely detailed, with a multi-level complex superstructure.
This sale drew interest from all corners of the world, as 2,000 lots of boats, trains, toys, motorcycles, and battery-op toys all hit the podium, accompanied by selections of pressed steel and a huge assortment of cast iron toys, over 250 mechanical and still banks, near mint comic character toys, and figural cast iron items.
A beloved lifelong student and collector of fine toys, who passed in November 2018, Bertoia said Downey Jr. followed in the footsteps of his father, Samuel Downey Sr., whose collection he inherited and expanded upon over several decades.
“Both father and son were attracted to the same types of toys, and both acquired only the finest examples, so their collections blended together seamlessly,” said Bertoia Auctions president and auctioneer Michael Bertoia. “Sam pursued rarity and beauty, with a focus on a specific time frame and style.”