A VF/NM 9-graded copy of Suspense Comics #3 (1944) has sold for $173,275 on August 29.
The lot displays a wildly controversial cover by artist Alex Schomburg, which depicts a Nazi death ritual about to be broken up by the arrival of a hero.
It remained largely unknown until a 1990 appearance in Gerbers Photo Journal and is missing from the majority of the biggest collections.
Heritage comments; "We suspect that the issue may not have seen many newsstands because of its very controversial cover, accounting for its absence in many of the more famous comic hoards…
"We have heard different estimates of how many copies may exist, all extremely low numbers; the chances of a nicer copy ever surfacing strike us as unlikely.
"This book is one of Overstreet's Top 100 Golden Age Comics, and will most likely not be moving from that list any time soon! Bragging rights abound here, so bid accordingly."
An original 1980 piece of X-Men double page splash art by John Byrne and Terry Austin realised $167,300.
Titled The Fate of the Phoenix, the storyline saw some use in the X-Men movie series.
Heritage explains: "this is one of the greatest full-team images of the X-Men ever, by the gold standard team of Byrne/Austin - directly from the heart of one of the most acclaimed runs in comic book history! Worth noting is that this may be the first time many fans have seen this art in its entirety."Please sign up to our free newsletter to receive exciting news about books and manuscripts