1956 Olympic Games torch auctions for $412,500

An Olympic torch from the equestrian events of the 1956 Games has sold for $412,500 in the US.

In doing so it has become the second most valuable Olympic torch ever auctioned, behind the $490,000 achieved by a 1952 Helsinki Games example in 2011, more than doubling its $175,000 estimate in the process.

1956 Stockholm Olympic torch
Just five Stockholm torches exist, ensuring a strong price

Rarity was a major factor behind the torch's strong showing.

Due to Australian quarantine restrictions, the Games' equestrian events took place in Stockholm rather than Melbourne, and just five torches were produced for the Sweden-based competitions.

Auctioneer Ingrid O'Neil told Paul Fraser Collectibles: "This was probably the only opportunity right now to buy a Stockholm torch, and that's why it resulted in that price."

The April 26 sale of Olympic memorabilia also featured Ernst Baier's gold medal from the figure skating at the 1936 Winter Olympics in his native Germany.

Against a $55,000 estimate it made $70,000.

Baier won the gold in the pairs competition, partnering Maxi Herber. The pair were the first to perform side by side jumps in competition, and are regarded as revolutionaries in the sport.

They went on to marry in 1940.

The record for Olympic memorabilia remains a gold medal won by Jesse Owens in defiance of Hitler at the 1936 Berlin Games. It sold for $1.4m last year.

Interested in sports memorabilia? Sign up to our free collectibles newsletter.

View our superb range of sports memorabilia for sale here.


Featured products

Elvis Presley Authentic Strand of Hair
Elvis Presley Authentic Strand of Hair
Sale price£399
In stock
Fidel Castro signed certificateFidel Castro Signed Certificate
Fidel Castro signed certificate
Sale price£2,995
In stock
King Henry VIII Autographed DocumentKing Henry VIII Autographed Document
King Henry VIII Autographed Document
Sale price£55,000
In stock