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Lot # 906 (of 1866)   < Previous Lot | Next Lot >

1935 Babe Ruth Signed Silver Certificate - Newly Discovered Example with Original Family Provenance!

Starting Bid - $1,000, Sold For - $5,925

One-dollar Silver Certificate (Series 1935A) signed by Babe Ruth in black fountain pen (grading "8/9") on the front. This certificate, which is new to the modern collecting world, has long been known as a family keepsake, originally belonged to our consignor's grandmother. After being misplaced for decades, in 2005 it was discovered by the consignor's mother during a cleaning of the grandmother's house, and in this auction is being sold directly by the grandchildren. While a dollar bill might seem to be a very unlikely item to have signed, and few examples for Ruth exist (this is just the second authentic example we have seen in years), there is a very logical explanation for how and why a person would have Ruth sign currency. People often encountered Ruth unexpectedly, either on the street, at a railroad station, at a restaurant, etc., and during those chance meetings, an autograph was always a souvenir that was practical and requested, and Ruth was always happy to oblige. But often there was no ball or photo or sometimes anything to sign. Most people at least had a dollar bill with them, and this came in handy for signing on at least a few occasions. All Ruth-signed dollar bills are extremely rare. This is an all-the-more unusual and rare example as it is a Silver Certificate. Silver Certificates, which could be redeemed for their equivalent value in silver at the time, were common during the 1930s, especially one-dollar notes. Congress abolished Silver Certificates in 1963 and all redemption in silver ended in 1968, but they are still legal tender today. As a point of reference, the only other one-dollar silver certificate signed by Ruth offered previously by REA appeared as Lot 976 in our May 2009 auction, where it sold for $3,525. The offered bill is a circulated note and displays normal creases and folds associated with its former use. In Good condition. LOA from James Spence/JSA. Reserve $1,000. Estimate (open). SOLD FOR $5,925

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