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1930 Goudey- Babe Ruth- questionable authenticity?

March 8 2007 at 10:30 PM
Mark H  (Login MarkH56)

My name is Mark P. Haverkos. At the end of September 2006, I won (bought) a purported 1930 Goudey Premium Babe Ruth Calendar Card from Clean Sweep Auctions. Since that time, I have attempted to authenticate the card, but thus far, everyone has told me that the card is neither original nor genuine – expect for Clean Sweep. I have a letter from PSA stating that this card in not genuine or original. I also have a letter from Bill Mastro stating the same. Verbally, by telephone, Rob Lifson has told me that he also believes the card is not authentic, although he has never held it in his hand or wanted to do so. Two other experts have also advised me that the card is not authentic. The only “letter of authenticity” that I have been able to get for the card is from Steve Verkman, President of Clean Sweep Auctions. I paid $18,775.00 (with the buyer's premium) to Clean Sweep Auctions for the card (auction ended 09/27/06). Based on my inability to have the card authenticated by anyone (other than Steve Verkman’s opinion) I requested a refund from Clean Sweep Auctions and who refused to give me a refund and told that they were not going to spend anymore time on it. Can anyone help me with this unfortunate situation? Does anyone have any information or know anything about this card? Your help would be greatly appreciated by me, as I have put many hours into trying to find any information on the card and have come up with absolutely nothing. Thank you for any help you can provide.

Below are pictures of the front and back of the card:

[IMG][/IMG]

[IMG][/IMG]

edited title to be more specific


    
This message has been edited by leonl on Mar 9, 2007 8:29 PM


 
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Bob
(Login tbob)
Registered Users

Re: 1900's Babe Ruth Possible 1/1 - Please Help With Info!

March 8 2007, 10:37 PM 

I am curious- What reasons did PSA give for its not being genuine? Did the fact Mastro and Lifson had never heard of the card before make them question its authenticity or did they make their decision based on the paper and printing, etc.? If you bought a card which is not original or not authentic or countefeit or a "cinderella," you have no recourse than to sue to have your money returned based on either fraud or misrepresentation.

 
 

Dan Bretta
(Login slidekellyslide)
Network 54 Moderator

Re: 1900's Babe Ruth Possible 1/1 - Please Help With Info!

March 8 2007, 10:42 PM 

Where did Clean Sweep get this card? 1930 is a full three years before Goudey produced cards of any type.

 
 

leon
(Premier Login leonl)
Forum Owner

wow

March 8 2007, 10:50 PM 

I was the underbidder (bridesmaid) twice on this card. I will be very interested in seeing where this goes. I also would like to know, for my own edification, why those folks that think it's fake think the way they do. I am not, by any means, saying they are wrong or right, as I don't know. I would think if all of those folks mentioned, PSA, Bill Mastro, and Rob Lifson, all think it's fake....then it's probably fake. But I would still like to know why. Is the paper too new, the printing, are there dot patterns etc..??? Very interesting...Also, this could almost get into the realm of some forensic testing with the price it was sold at....


edited to put in "PSA" instead of "SGC" as that is what Mark had said...


    
This message has been edited by leonl on Mar 8, 2007 10:53 PM


 
 
daryle
(Login wolfdogg)

Ruth card

March 8 2007, 10:55 PM 

Didn't Steve have that same exact card in two auctions? I'll have to dig in my back issues of Verkmans catalogs 'cause I think he has had it in two different auctions..............

 
 

Steve f
(Login fdnyladder7)

Re: 1900's Babe Ruth Possible 1/1 - Please Help With Info!

March 8 2007, 10:57 PM 

The original had some really creative and detailed handywork.

I'm no grader, but have seen B/W laserprinted fakes and this is just another. Too bad, it's a nice design.

Mark, I hope you are able to recoup.

Note the lack of uniformity in surface gloss -this appears only where the ink is applied and will feel rough and lightly raised where it's black. I bought the same type of print once.



    
This message has been edited by fdnyladder7 on Mar 8, 2007 11:30 PM


 
 

leon
(Premier Login leonl)
Forum Owner

Yes

March 8 2007, 10:58 PM 

It was the same card.....The first person that bought it turned around and had Steve auction it again around a year later....regards

 
 
daryle
(Login wolfdogg)

Thanks Leon........

March 8 2007, 11:04 PM 

saved me a lotta diggin' tomorrow

 
 
Frank Wakefield
(Login Greatwake)
Registered Users

Re: 1900's Babe Ruth Possible 1/1 - Please Help With Info!

March 8 2007, 11:18 PM 

Well I'm sorry for you. To me, that card doesn't look like a 1930 baseball card. It may well be real, but I wouldn't give you $5 for it.

Have you looked at the print with a strong magnifying glass?? Have you illuminated the card with black light? Have you contacted an attorney about legal recourse, if any, against Clean Sweep?? Those would be good steps, especially the last. Or sell the card to the underbidder and take a loss. I think if you got much of anything at all for the card then you've done well to get out.

Good luck with it,

Frank.

 
 
cmoking
(Login cmoking)

description

March 8 2007, 11:30 PM 

Does anyone have the description that Clean Sweep put on the auction? I vaguely recall something along the lines that the seller (who I guess won the item in the first auction) had some sob story which did not seem appropriate for an auction description. It just seemed odd.

 
 
daryle
(Login wolfdogg)

Cmoking

March 8 2007, 11:38 PM 

I will do some digging tomorrow to see if I have the Sept '06 Catalog. I may still have it.

 
 

JK
(Login jkrasner2)

Re: 1900's Babe Ruth Possible 1/1 - Please Help With Info!

March 8 2007, 11:51 PM 

I recall there being a death in the family or something like that that caused the original winner to resell the card.

 
 
shane Leonard
(Login shaneleo)

got screwed

March 8 2007, 11:51 PM 

That sucks that you spent $18K on a fake item. I guess my question would be why would you go this deep on a card that 1) is not graded 2) is not known to exist 3) is in this crappy auction 4) has a calander on the back? I don't like Stevie anyway, so I would sue him just because of that. I am not sure about the statue of limitations on this, so you might consult with an attorney on this one.

 
 
Paul
(Login deadballpaul)

Re: 1900's Babe Ruth Possible 1/1 - Please Help With Info!

March 9 2007, 1:13 AM 

Have you looked at it with a microscope to see if it has vintage printing such as photo engraving? www.cycleback.com has a nice description of what to look for (thanks David).



    
This message has been edited by deadballpaul on Mar 25, 2007 8:30 PM


 
 

Kevin
(Login only_child)

real?

March 9 2007, 1:45 AM 

It should be pretty easy to tell by giving it a good inspection...other than a scan.

For an $18K price tag it might be worth a few bucks to send it to an independant 4th party or trusted 3rd party.

Kevin

 
 
barrysloate
(Login barrysloate)

1900's Babe Ruth Possible 1/1 - Please Help With Info!

March 9 2007, 7:07 AM 

According to Steve, the winning bidder bought the card for his son, and then the son was killed in an automobile crash and the distraught owner decided to sell it. I won't even question the veracity of the story.

One of the problems with this is it is unique, and therefore there are no other examples to compare it to. I would send it to a conservator, and pay a few hundred dollars to have him test the paper. If the paper is not consistent with what was out there ca. 1930, then you have a very strong case. If you just go by people's words and opinions you won't get anywhere with it.

 
 

Steve f
(Login fdnyladder7)

Re: 1900's Babe Ruth Possible 1/1 - Please Help With Info!

March 9 2007, 7:53 AM 

Mark,

Barry's correct. At that cost, it's worth the few bucks. Heck, I've only seen a scan, and it is rare, but also been rong before.


 
 
Corey R. Shanus
(Login benjulmag)

Re: 1900's Babe Ruth Possible 1/1 - Please Help With Info!

March 9 2007, 8:10 AM 

As I understand the law in New York State, if a lot is identified as being one thing and turns out to be something else, you have legal recourse. The key thing is where the identification occurs. It must be on the first line (often in bold type) right after the lot number, not in the descriptive paragraph(s) below. So in this case if the description read something like "Babe Ruth calendar card from 1930" and you can establish (for example by forensic testing) that the card could not have been made before, say, 1950, I think you're home free (assuming there are no statute of limitation problems); Clean Sweep would be legally required to take the card back and refund your money.

I do think, though, as others have mentioned, that perhaps the main lesson to be learned is the danger of buying something you've never seen before and that does not come with third party (e.g., SGC, PSA) authentication, especially when accompanied by some sob story explaining why the card is being resold again so soon. All auction houses have a conflict of interest in how they describe something, and it is always best to learn about an item from an individual or company that has no economic stake in what you do.

 
 
Frank Wakefield
(Login Greatwake)
Registered Users

Re: 1900's Babe Ruth Possible 1/1 - Please Help With Info!

March 9 2007, 8:55 AM 

Above I mentioned that I wouldn't pay $5 for the card... If the card was in a PSA slab I still wouldn't give you $5 for it. Slabbing isn't the solution. I can see it might help you sell it... it wouldn't help me buy it.

Don't call a lawyer, get some money together and go see a lawyer. Soon.



What are the dimensions of that Ruth card???


    
This message has been edited by Greatwake on Mar 9, 2007 9:36 AM


 
 

leon
(Premier Login leonl)
Forum Owner

unfortunate situation

March 9 2007, 8:32 PM 

I hope this gets cleared up for everyone's sake. I just got off of the phone with a very nice lawyer that I am sure can change from being nice, quickly, in the normal course of business. regards

 
 
 
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