Musgo Gasoline sign pulls world-record price

By: Guy Allen, Unique Cars magazine

Ultra-rare sign gets US$230,000!

Musgo Gasoline sign pulls world-record price
Rare Musgo sign proved to be worth a small fortune.

Mecum's Road Art auction at Walworth (Wisconsin, USA) scored some extraordinary results and points to a burgeoning market for memorabilia in that country.

Top-line cars are pulling big results, with multi-million dollar prices now being common, and it now seems likely the same buyers are turning their attention to high-end road art

The stand-out lot was a Musgo gasoline sign, which the auctioneer originally estimated at a stratospheric US$100-150,000 (AU$131-196,000).

The 120cm round double-sided Chicago-made porcelain sign is believed to be exceptionally rare, particularly in having both sides well-preserved. Folklore says many were used as septic covers or for similar purposes and weathered badly.

It comprehensively beat the estimate by fetching US$230,000 (AU$301,000). That's believed by the auctioneer to be a new world record for a sign of its type.

Musgo was a trademark of the Muskegon Oil Company, which is said to have been in business for a very short period of time  from 1927 through to the year of the great Wall Street stock market crash in 1929.

Replica signs can be readily bought, which highlights how careful anyone after real one needs to be when it comes to provenance.

Nine other lots cracked the US$50,000 mark.

See the Mecum site here.

Collecting auto memorabilia and petrolania in particular has developed an international following. See this link for a bit of background from a USA writer's point of view.


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