In Jim Cook's Archive


Last summer when the Federal Reserve started raising interest rates to fight inflation, I decided to sell my collection of concert posters. My fear was that high value collectibles might crash along with everything else. I’ve never been much of a conventional investor. When I had some money, I bought coins, collectors items and art. I’ve never owned a bond or had a savings account. I was always stretching my finances to buy a rare baseball card, a scarce poster, antique advertising and collectible toys. My antique duck decoy collection is considered to be the foremost collection in the country.

In recent years, I’ve been selling off some of these valuables and lately, I felt I should sell more because of the unfolding economic conditions. I put my concert posters with Heritage Auctions in Dallas for sale in November and it’s a good thing that I did. Hurricane Ian drew a bead on the island community of Boca Grande where my winter home is located. The inside of my house was drenched and after a week without electricity, black mold grew everywhere. The drywall, floors, ceilings and stairways had to be removed and it needs a new roof. The bills just keep piling up. Insurance only covers some of it, so selling my poster collection was timely.

The featured piece in the auction was the only known poster for “The Day the Music Died.” It pictured Buddy Holly, The Big Bopper and Richie Valens for a concert in Moorhead, Minnesota that they did not get to. It sold for $340,000 plus 25% for the auction house. I then put an autographed photo of Marilyn Monroe in another Heritage Auction in December. It was signed, “I love you, Joe – Marilyn”. She had given it to Joe DiMaggio. It sold for $240,000 which was more than I expected. Repairing my house is also a lot more than I expected.

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