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Vintage 1960’s Motorcycle Poster Treasure Trove

Wow, sometimes it pays to ask the right questions… I was recently talking to a young hipster in Casarama and the subject migrated from vintage leather jackets to vintage motorcycles. In the conversation my young hipster friend mentioned that his uncle and grandfather used to race TT Flat Track races back in the 1960’s and were an integral part of forming the American Cycle Association to counterbalance the newly forming strict regulations by the AMA on TT racing and the dangers associated with it. Being a poster collector, I quickly asked if he might have any old posters or memorabilia associated with his uncle or grandfather. He scratched his head and said, “I think my Grandpa has tons of old paper goods out in his shed, but they have been there since the 1960’s and the rats and water have damaged them. I will check next time I’m at his ranch and see if any are salvageable.”

I had nearly given up on the conversation after a few weeks, thinking that he either didn’t check, or that there was nothing there. Well, lo-and-behold, yesterday he turned up with a couple of hand-fulls of paper in my shop. He said that he had dug into drawers and had unearthed “tons” of old posters, mailers, programs and banners that had survived the carnage of the years of water and mice. He said he had duplicates of many. I was about to get excited when he also told me that he had done some research after finding them and had found that Bonham’s Auction House had listed an exact copy of one of the posters and had valued it at $300 – $500 at auction. His feeling was now that all of them were worth $300 -$500 EACH! Sometimes I hate the internet, but what I really hate is that people believe that what they read is always the truth. I tried to reason with the young man and tell him that I have never paid more than $150 for any vintage motorcycle poster, and those were the best examples. Never-the-less, he stood his ground and I was forced to pay a little more than I was comfortable with in hopes that he might turn up with some more in the next few weeks. This is what I bought so far, and barring that his phone inquiry with Bonham’s doesn’t undermine my reasoning, I just might get some more in the future:

 

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One response to “Vintage 1960’s Motorcycle Poster Treasure Trove

  • Shaun Power

    Hi there,

    Just a note to say we really love the posters you’ve collected together.
    As producers of Benzina magazine we’d love to produce a feature on these posters as they’re just such wonderful works of motorcycle art.
    So, would you be happy for us to feature a selection of your posters?
    We would of course give you full credit and links back to your blog and site. I’m happy to send you over some sample PDF’s of our new look and would send layouts to you for approval before print.
    Let me know your thoughts when you can.
    All the best,
    Shaun Power – Benzina designer.

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