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The Malcolm Forbes Toy Collection Brings $2.4 Million at Sotheby's New York
Part the Forbes toy collection which has been on display for the past 25 years in the lobby of the Forbes Magazine headquarters in New York is shown. The Forbes collection of miniature antique toy boats, luxury ships, soldiers, cowboys and American Indians, and games brought $2.3 million at an auction conducted by Sotheby's Auction House in New York, Friday, Dec. 17, 2010. (AP Photo/Sotheby's.
NEW YORK, NY.- A packed salesroom of toy collectors and enthusiasts watched as The Malcolm Forbes Toy Collection achieved $2,388,637 today at Sotheby’s New York. The collection of toy boats, soldiers, motorcycles and classic board games was lovingly gathered over nearly four decades by legendary collector Malcolm Forbes and his sons.

Boats by the celebrated German maker Märklin dominated the top prices brought in the first half of the auction. The sale was led by a Märklin “Lusitania” Ocean Liner that sold for $194,500, a new auction record for a toy boat. The toy had previously held the record when it was purchased by Mr. Forbes at Sotheby’s New York in 1983 for $28,600. Also drawing interest from several bidders was an Exotic Clockwork Gunboat Attributed to Märklin /Rock and Graner which achieved $134,500.

The groups of toy soldiers offered this afternoon sparked considerable interest from bidders in the room, on the phone and those participating online. The group was led by The Sack of Troy that features a tinplate walled city of Troy, a suspiciously large horse, and Heyde figures of Greek and Trojan warriors, which sold for more than four times the high estimate of $5,000 to bring $21,250*. Aloys Ochel Figures and Aztec Pyramid, which depicts a dramatic battle between the Aztec warriors and the troops of Hernando Cortez around the Pyramid of the Sun in Tenochtitlan, sold for a remarkable $13,750, well in excess of the pre-sale high estimate of $3,500. Two rare sets of finely detailed medieval heraldic model figures handmade in Great Britain by Richard Courtenay also sold well: a group of 29 Courtenay Mounted Knights, England, circa 1930s-1950s brought $15,000, while a group of 13 Courtenay Mounted Tournament Knights, England, circa 1930s-1950s sold for $8,750.

Another major highlight from today’s sale was an original Monopoly game-set of circular design, handmade by Charles Darrow, probably 1933, and descended in his family. The gameset sold for $146,500, well-above the $80,000 high estimate. It
is the earliest Darrow set known to survive, the only one of circular shape, and the earliest to include the rules.

*Pre-sale estimates do not include buyer’s premium

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