Saturday, February 22, 2014

Pat Croce Houdini Collection auction results

SOLD for $16,000.

Results are in from yesterday's Briggs auction of Houdini artifacts from the private collection of former Philadelphia 76ers president Pat Croce. One of the auction highlights was a large color lithograph from Houdini's full evening show. The poster beat the pre-auction estimate of $8,000-10,000 and landed at $16,000 (not including the 18% buyers premium). Very nice!

As predicated, the two display case collections of antique padlocks and handcuffs brought in the highest amounts (although both fell short of their estimates). The Castle Locks came in at $22,000 (before premium). The handcuffs brought in $28,000 (before premium). Both cases were created for the 1953 Tony Curtis Houdini movie, and were housed for many years at the Houdini Magical Hall of Fame in Canada.

SOLD for $28,000 and $22,000.

Some other items of note: a framed assortment of Water Torture Cell artifacts ($7,500); a Houdini scrapbook kept by the Houdini club of Philadelphia ($3200); a Houdini program from France that contains a variant image of the Milk Can poster ($450); a colorful Houdini broadside ($4000); a signed challenge ($2,200); and a Levante "Steel Trunk Mystery" poster ($700).

But the hidden gem of the auction might have been this cartoon sketch of Houdini. On it is written: "An original sketch by Kin Hubbard - his impression of Houdini. In pen and ink." I didn't notice it until it was on the block, but that inscription appears to be in Houdini's own hand. It beat the auction estimate of $400-500, but still seems like a bargain at $750.

SOLD for $750.

You can currently view all the auction results on live auctioneers

Congrats to all the buyers.

UPDATE: Click over to THIS PAGE at the Houdini Museum in Scranton for an on-the-scene report by Dorothy Dietrich and Dick Brookz.

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