Lincoln flag tops Heritage political auction at $20,000

This 1860 campaign flag for Abraham Lincoln and his running mate Hannibal Hamlin brought $20,000. Heritage Auctions image.

This 1860 campaign flag for Abraham Lincoln and his running mate Hannibal Hamlin brought $20,000. Heritage Auctions image.

DALLAS – An 1860 campaign flag for Abraham Lincoln and his running mate Hannibal Hamlin brought $20,000 during Heritage Auctions’ American Political Item Collectors national convention auction July 30 in Denver. The auction saw intense demand for rare pinback buttons, which claimed six of the top 10 auction lots as multiple bidders competed to own presidential memorabilia and fresh-to-market discoveries.

LiveAuctioneers.com facilitated Internet live bidding.

“The auction was a rousing success with just three lots left unsold,” said Tom Slater, director of Americana at Heritage Auctions. “The material was particularly strong for this auction, which is a testament to the political collecting hobby and the motivated membership of the APIC.”

The APIC is a nonprofit membership organization, dedicated to promoting the collecting, preservation and study of materials relating to political campaigns and the U.S. presidency.

“The [auction] attendance was very impressive,” said Ron Puechner, co-chair of the Denver convention and newly elected APIC President. “The selection and quality of items was amazing, but since we agreed to do the single session with the limited number of items, it did not negatively affect the buying on the convention floor or in the members’ auction. I think this would be a good template for future conventions.”

Among the auction’s highlights, a possibly unique variant of a sought-after Coolidge and Dawes 6-inch jugate surprised bidders as it sold for $12,188, more than three times its preauction estimate. Possibly a manufacturer’s test piece or even a salesman’s sample, the pinback’s portraits are in blue rather than the customary black and white.

A full-color William Jennings Bryan 1 1/4-inch pinback in excellent condition ended at $9,375 following interest from six bidders. The button championed the Bryan campaign’s strong outreach to American labor in an ultimately futile appeal to combat opponent William McKinley’s considerable ties to the movement.

A rare “hopeful” pinback button designed to encourage American industrialist Henry Ford to run for president sold for $7,812. The circa 1920s pinback sparked a bidding war among three collectors who quickly surpassed the rarity’s $1,500 estimate.

A New Deal button depicting the GOP elephant crushing the Democratic donkey, issued in support of Republican Alf Landon in his campaign against Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s second re-election effort, hammered for $6,875. A rare and colorful 1912 jugate celluloid – one of just a handful known to exist to feature photographs of both Teddy Roosevelt and Hiram Johnson – sold for $4,687.

Additional highlights include:

– A rare stogie or glasses case depicting Maj. Gen. Winfield Scott sold for $4,062.

– A Liverpool creamware tankard celebrating George Washington sold for $4,062.

– An 1840 campaign “pewter rim” featuring William Henry Harrison brought $3,906.

– A unique 1900-dated silver ingot for William Jennings Bryan’s campaign ended at $3,250.

Click here to view the fully illustrated catalog for this sale, complete with prices realized.


ADDITIONAL LOTS OF NOTE


This 1860 campaign flag for Abraham Lincoln and his running mate Hannibal Hamlin brought $20,000. Heritage Auctions image.

This 1860 campaign flag for Abraham Lincoln and his running mate Hannibal Hamlin brought $20,000. Heritage Auctions image.

A rare 1920s 'hopeful' pinback button designed to encourage American industrialist Henry Ford to run for president sold for $7,812. Heritage Auctions image.

A rare 1920s ‘hopeful’ pinback button designed to encourage American industrialist Henry Ford to run for president sold for $7,812. Heritage Auctions image.

A rare and colorful 1912 jugate celluloid – one of just a handful known to exist to feature photographs of both Teddy Roosevelt and Hiram Johnson – sold for $4,687. Heritage Auctions image.

Liverpool creamware tankard celebrating George Washington. Price realized: $4,062. Heritage Auctions image.

Liverpool creamware tankard celebrating George Washington. Price realized: $4,062. Heritage Auctions image.