Honus Wagner Card Sells for $1.2 Million

An extremely rare baseball card from one of the legends of the game sold for more than a million dollars at auction.

An anonymous bidder from New Jersey put up $1.2 million to make sure that he would be the next owner of a 1909 Honus Wagner "T-206" baseball card on Friday.

The card is usually thought of as the "holy grail" of baseball cards, but the $1.2 million is not the highest anyone has paid for a card in this series.

Arizona Diamondbacks owner Ken Kendrick paid a record $2.8 million for a card which was once owned by Wayne Gretzky. That card was considered to be in the best condition of any remaining T-206.

The Honus Wagner baseball card is part of a set of cards known as the T-206, which were cards issued from 1909 through 1911 by the American Tobacco Company.

The card came inside cigarette packs but only about 200 were ever issued after they were pulled from production, according to AP. It is estimated today that there are only about 60 cards left, with only about 22 cards being in a condition to be sold.

"I am actually thrilled," said Bill Goodwin, a Sunset Hill, Mich., collectibles dealer who ran the online auction, which started on March 27.

"You know you always want to get a little more, but we did well … the final sale price is about $300,000 more than that of the last Wagner," he continued.

Bill Shelton, who was involved with the auction, said that it is becoming more common for non-sports fans to by memorabilia because they understand that their value should increase over time.

"A lot of people were talking about investment and return on investment … I think people are starting to see these high-end cards in the same terms as art and antiques," Shelton told AP.

Honus Wagner was nicknamed "The Flying Dutchman," and during his 21-year-career, won eight batting titles and had a career batting average of .327.