UPCOMING EVENTS

  • 04/01/15 - Alderfer Auction & Appraisal...   04/01/15 - Wilson's Auctioneers & Appraisers...   04/03/15 - Garth's Auctioneers & Appraisers...   04/03/15 - Kenneth P. Leiby...   04/03-04/15 - Maurer's Auctions...   04/04/15 - Cordier Auctions & Appraisers...   04/04/15 - Alfred's Auctions, Inc....   04/04/15 - Gateway Gallery Auction, Inc....   04/01 & 04/03-04/15 - Neil Courtney & Kenneth Hassinger...   04/03-04/15 - Stephen Schuler...   04/04/15 - Adams Auction Sales Svc LLC...   04/03-04/15 - Ron Rhoads...   04/04/15 - Robert Fulton Fire Co. (local & well auctioneers)...   04/04/15 - Blums...   04/06/15 - Boltz Auctions...   04/08/15 - Sellersville Auction LLC...   04/08/15 - Diefenderfer Auction Co., LLC...   04/08-09/15 - Alderfer Auction & Appraisal...   04/08-09/15 - Atlee Raber & Daniel Weaver...   4/10/15 - Ted Maurer, Bob Homan...   04/11/15 - Pa OnSite Auction Co....   04/11/15 - Toomey Auction Service, Inc....   04/11/15 - Horst Auctioneers...   04/11/15 - Rawlinsville Fire Co...   04/11/15 - Horning Farm Agency...   04/11/15 - Robert H. Clinton & Company, Inc....   04/10-11/15 - Rich Harry...   04/11/15 - Scott A. Young...   04/11/15 - Howard B. Parzow...   04/11/15 - Witman Auctioneers, Inc....   04/11/15 - Gateway Gallery Auction, Inc....   04/11/15 - Ziegler Auction Co., Ltd....   04/11/15 - Dotta Auction Co., Inc....   04/13/15 - C & M Auctioneers...   04/15/15 - Embassy Auctions International...   4/17/15 - Stephensons Auction...   04/18/15 - C. Wayne Shultz...   04/18/15 - Fahnestock's Auction Service...   04/18/15 - Ray H. Knecht...   04/18/15 - Dotta Auction Co., Inc....   04/18/15 - Jessica Shaub Meyer...   04/18/15 - Rentzels Auction Service, Inc....   04/18/15 - Witman Auctioneers Inc....   04/18/15 - K. D. Smith Auctions...   04/18/15 - Wiederseim Associates, Inc....   04/18/15 - Rene Snyder...   04/19/15 - Dennis F. & Tracy L. Wagner...   04/19/15 - K. D. Smith Auctions...   04/19/15 - Morphy Auctions...   04/23/15 - Barr Davis Auctioneers, LLC...   04/24-26/15 - Rock Island Auction Company...   
  • 04/01/15 - Alderfer Auction & Appraisal...   04/01/15 - Wilson's Auctioneers & Appraisers...   04/03/15 - Garth's Auctioneers & Appraisers...   04/03/15 - Kenneth P. Leiby...   04/03-04/15 - Maurer's Auctions...   04/04/15 - Cordier Auctions & Appraisers...   04/04/15 - Alfred's Auctions, Inc....   04/04/15 - Gateway Gallery Auction, Inc....   04/01 & 04/03-04/15 - Neil Courtney & Kenneth Hassinger...   04/03-04/15 - Stephen Schuler...   04/04/15 - Adams Auction Sales Svc LLC...   04/03-04/15 - Ron Rhoads...   04/04/15 - Robert Fulton Fire Co. (local & well auctioneers)...   04/04/15 - Blums...   04/06/15 - Boltz Auctions...   04/08/15 - Sellersville Auction LLC...   04/08/15 - Diefenderfer Auction Co., LLC...   04/08-09/15 - Alderfer Auction & Appraisal...   04/08-09/15 - Atlee Raber & Daniel Weaver...   4/10/15 - Ted Maurer, Bob Homan...   04/11/15 - Pa OnSite Auction Co....   04/11/15 - Toomey Auction Service, Inc....   04/11/15 - Horst Auctioneers...   04/11/15 - Rawlinsville Fire Co...   04/11/15 - Horning Farm Agency...   04/11/15 - Robert H. Clinton & Company, Inc....   04/10-11/15 - Rich Harry...   04/11/15 - Scott A. Young...   04/11/15 - Howard B. Parzow...   04/11/15 - Witman Auctioneers, Inc....   04/11/15 - Gateway Gallery Auction, Inc....   04/11/15 - Ziegler Auction Co., Ltd....   04/11/15 - Dotta Auction Co., Inc....   04/13/15 - C & M Auctioneers...   04/15/15 - Embassy Auctions International...   4/17/15 - Stephensons Auction...   04/18/15 - C. Wayne Shultz...   04/18/15 - Fahnestock's Auction Service...   04/18/15 - Ray H. Knecht...   04/18/15 - Dotta Auction Co., Inc....   04/18/15 - Jessica Shaub Meyer...   04/18/15 - Rentzels Auction Service, Inc....   04/18/15 - Witman Auctioneers Inc....   04/18/15 - K. D. Smith Auctions...   04/18/15 - Wiederseim Associates, Inc....   04/18/15 - Rene Snyder...   04/19/15 - Dennis F. & Tracy L. Wagner...   04/19/15 - K. D. Smith Auctions...   04/19/15 - Morphy Auctions...   04/23/15 - Barr Davis Auctioneers, LLC...   04/24-26/15 - Rock Island Auction Company...   
  • 04/01/15 - Alderfer Auction & Appraisal...   04/01/15 - Wilson's Auctioneers & Appraisers...   04/03/15 - Garth's Auctioneers & Appraisers...   04/03/15 - Kenneth P. Leiby...   04/03-04/15 - Maurer's Auctions...   04/04/15 - Cordier Auctions & Appraisers...   04/04/15 - Alfred's Auctions, Inc....   04/04/15 - Gateway Gallery Auction, Inc....   04/01 & 04/03-04/15 - Neil Courtney & Kenneth Hassinger...   04/03-04/15 - Stephen Schuler...   04/04/15 - Adams Auction Sales Svc LLC...   04/03-04/15 - Ron Rhoads...   04/04/15 - Robert Fulton Fire Co. (local & well auctioneers)...   04/04/15 - Blums...   04/06/15 - Boltz Auctions...   04/08/15 - Sellersville Auction LLC...   04/08/15 - Diefenderfer Auction Co., LLC...   04/08-09/15 - Alderfer Auction & Appraisal...   04/08-09/15 - Atlee Raber & Daniel Weaver...   4/10/15 - Ted Maurer, Bob Homan...   04/11/15 - Pa OnSite Auction Co....   04/11/15 - Toomey Auction Service, Inc....   04/11/15 - Horst Auctioneers...   04/11/15 - Rawlinsville Fire Co...   04/11/15 - Horning Farm Agency...   04/11/15 - Robert H. Clinton & Company, Inc....   04/10-11/15 - Rich Harry...   04/11/15 - Scott A. Young...   04/11/15 - Howard B. Parzow...   04/11/15 - Witman Auctioneers, Inc....   04/11/15 - Gateway Gallery Auction, Inc....   04/11/15 - Ziegler Auction Co., Ltd....   04/11/15 - Dotta Auction Co., Inc....   04/13/15 - C & M Auctioneers...   04/15/15 - Embassy Auctions International...   4/17/15 - Stephensons Auction...   04/18/15 - C. Wayne Shultz...   04/18/15 - Fahnestock's Auction Service...   04/18/15 - Ray H. Knecht...   04/18/15 - Dotta Auction Co., Inc....   04/18/15 - Jessica Shaub Meyer...   04/18/15 - Rentzels Auction Service, Inc....   04/18/15 - Witman Auctioneers Inc....   04/18/15 - K. D. Smith Auctions...   04/18/15 - Wiederseim Associates, Inc....   04/18/15 - Rene Snyder...   04/19/15 - Dennis F. & Tracy L. Wagner...   04/19/15 - K. D. Smith Auctions...   04/19/15 - Morphy Auctions...   04/23/15 - Barr Davis Auctioneers, LLC...   04/24-26/15 - Rock Island Auction Company...   
To Sell Or Not To Sell?

March 25, 2015 Updated March 26, 2015

To Sell Or Not To Sell?

By Shawn Surmick

Someone wise once said that you cannot preserve the past without sacrificing some of the future. Collectors know this sentiment all too well. Preservation is one of the fundamental reasons as to why we collect. Unfortunately, in most cases collecting anything comes with a cost that is not always measured solely in dollars and cents. Factors such as time, space, and practicality all enter into the equation. Meanwhile the financial aspect of building a collection cannot be ignored. Almost every week the media now reports on some new auction record that exceeded expectations while reality television continues to alert audiences to the perceived value of their beloved treasures.
As a result the overall market for the most popular antiques and collectibles continues to climb. It is generally at these times that the thought of selling a collection enters the mind of even the most hardcore collector. I am now at this point in my life. While I collect across a wide array of collecting fields, recently I have been thinking of selling my vast collection of high-grade, third-party-certified vintage comic books.
Unfortunately, this decision is not without some hesitation. The collection was acquired between the year of 2007 to the present day and has been a true pleasure to cultivate. With the recent rise of super hero movies and vast media attention being paid to the most sought after vintage comic books the market has grown exponentially. It has gotten to the point where my investment in this collection could easily be tripled at sale. All of the books are high-grade key issues from the bronze- and silver-age eras. Some of the highlights include: Tales of Suspense #52 (first appearance of the Black Widow) CGC 9.2, Tales of Suspense #53 CGC 9.2, Avengers #57 (first appearance of The Vision) CGC 9.4, Iron Man #1 (Twin Cities Pedigree) CGC 9.4, House of Secret #92 (first appearance of the Swamp Thing) CGC 9.4, Giant Size X-Men #1 CGC 9.4, Amazing Spider-Man #129 (first appearance of the Punisher) CGC 9.4, X-Men #94 CGC 9.4, Hero for Hire #1 (first appearance of Luke Cage) CGC 9.2, and many, many more. I took great pride in buying books from reputable dealers at excellent prices and always bought well before a key movie announcement or mainstream popularity of a lesser known character. A lot of these books literally doubled and tripled in price in just the short time I owned them. As a result I am skeptical of the long term validity of the vintage comic book market. While critics will continue to argue that the recent rise of super hero movies has made these books fantastic investments for the long term, I have a different perspective. Just ask anyone that is now holding on to Western movie and television memorabilia. There is a moment of truth for all perceived items of value and high-grade vintage comic books will have their reckoning as well. Thanks in part to the rise in popularity of most comic book characters, speculators have entered the market in droves, and prices are anything but stable. While I personally do not see a major price correction coming for some time, I have to take a cautious approach. While most collectors place nostalgia and emotion over logic, I can no longer do so. Even some of my own mentors in the trade are telling me to strike while the proverbial iron is hot.
Still, I find myself conflicted. The collection isn't even in my direct possession (it is stored in a secure, climate-controlled location) but I still find myself wondering if I will regret this decision. Luckily, I have vast collections spanning some of the most popular collecting fields to keep my mind off this decision. I've gotten back into collecting video games and started to dabble in vintage advertising while adding to my ever growing collection of antique and vintage marbles. Meanwhile, fellow collectors have asked me if I will ever collect vintage comic books again, and the answer is yes, but it will be done different this time. Next time I will choose to focus on acquiring a lot of the mega keys from the silver-age era.
The reason my current collection appreciated so quickly in value is because I chose to focus on popular books, but also lesser known characters that I knew would become popular due to the rise of super hero movies. The Black Widow is one such example. Created in 1964 by Marvel Comics, the character really didn't establish herself as a second tier super hero until the debut of the Avengers movie franchise. Scarlett Johansson helped bring the character to life in a way that no other actress could, and demand for comic books that showcase Black Widow’s early appearances are still on the rise as a result.
In upcoming articles I will explore the steps I took to sell this collection and talk about the outcome. Of course there is also a chance that I may not go through with the actual sale. Should that happen a follow up article will be written to discuss why. Until then I wish you all well.

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