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Lot # 1051 (of 1743)   < Previous Lot | Next Lot >

1930 Ty Cobb Signed Coca-Cola Stock Certificate

Starting Bid - $2,000, Sold For - $11,163

Extremely rare and significant Coca-Cola stock certificate, for 100 shares of Class A stock, issued to and signed on the reverse by Ty Cobb. This stock certificate was literally saved from the trash dump by our consignor, who, over twenty-five years ago while at work at a firm that was involved in handling the Cobb estate, noticed it sitting in a waste basket. She immediately recognized Cobb's name and thinking that it might be an interesting keepsake, asked if she could have it. Permission was granted (they had little or no value at this time), and this, along with a second certificate signed by Cobb (not included here; she sold the second Cobb signed certificate years ago) and seven additional Coca-Cola stock certificates made out to Shirley Cobb (Ty's daughter) were literally saved from being thrown out. The seven certificates made out to Shirley Cobb (all of which on their reverses were transfered over to Ty Cobb in 1930 and 1931) are included here with the offered Cobb-signed stock certificate. The first Ty Cobb Coca-Cola stock certificate she sold years ago was later consigned to REA. That first example appeared as Lot 8 in Robert Edward Auctions' May 2007 sale (with a reserve of $2,000 and an estimate of $4,000 to $6,000), where it realized an astounding final sales price of $19,975. A quirk of the Internet world is that this sale recently came to her attention. She was stunned at the price (she had sold the first certificate for a very modest sum because she had two), and contacted REA with the remaining Ty Cobb certificate and additional seven Shirley Cobb certificates which are included here. This is the entire balance of the archive of Ty Cobb related Coca-Cola stock certificates that she was given.

Ty Cobb's financial acumen and association with Coca-Cola as an early investor is legendary, both to the history of Ty Cobb and the history of Coca-Cola. This is only the second Coca-Cola stock certificate issued to Ty Cobb that we have ever seen. This certificate, like the first that we sold in 2007, is dated December 31, 1930, and bears Cobb’s name on the front. It is numbered “2055” in the upper left corner. Cobb later transferred this stock to his daughter Shirley, and that transaction is duly recorded on the reverse. The preprinted transfer declaration, dated May 2, 1935, assigns Cobb’s 100 shares to “Miss Shirley Cobb,” and has been signed in black fountain pen (grading “9”) by “Tyrus R. Cobb” in acknowledgment of the transaction. Both an Internal Revenue Service and New York State stock transfer tax stamp appear on the reverse. While Ty Cobb’s legacy on the field of play needs no recounting here, what is less known by many fans is that Cobb was baseball’s first millionaire player. He achieved that status in large part not from his salary as a ballplayer but due to his shrewd business investments during the early 1900s. Cobb, though he was not college educated, came from a well-to-do family in Georgia. His father was a local schoolteacher and Cobb’s lifestyle was one of privilege, not hardship. His natural intelligence, combined with his father’s insistence on educational excellence, prepared him well for his future career. Unlike most of his teammates, Cobb didn't squander his money, but instead invested it wisely. He was an early shareholder in both Coca-Cola and General Motors, two of the most successful companies in American history, and the profits he reaped from those investments alone made him extremely wealthy. His investment in Coca-Cola had a special significance for him, as the company was based in his home state of Georgia. Of all of Cobb’s business ventures, it is his association with Coca-Cola that is best remembered today. Cobb was not only a major shareholder up until his death in 1961, but also a prominent spokesperson for the company. This is an extraordinary document in all respects, made all the more desirable by the signature of the famed “Georgia Peach” on the reverse. The certificate (12 x 8.5 inches) bears three vertical folds and a number of staple holes, as well as official perforations. In Excellent condition overall. The seven additional certificates made out to Shirley Cobb are identical in size and in similar condition (and to reiterate, these additional seven certificates that are included are not signed by Ty Cobb). Total: 8 stock certificates. LOA from James Spence/JSA. Reserve $2,000. Estimate (open). SOLD FOR $11,163

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