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One of Jesse Owens' Olympic gold medals to go up for auction

November 08, 2013|By David Wharton
  • Jesse Owens crosses the finish line to win the 100-meter dash at the 1936 Olympics.
Jesse Owens crosses the finish line to win the 100-meter dash at the 1936… (AFP/Getty Images )

One of the four gold medals won by Jesse Owens at the 1936 Berlin Olympics is to go up for auction later this month.

The whereabouts of the other three remain unknown, so SCP Auctions, the Orange County auction house conducting the online sale, expects this one to go for as much as $1 million.

Owens' victories in Berlin represent a memorable point in Olympic history, with the African American athlete performing brilliantly before a less-than-thrilled Adolf Hitler, who wanted the Games to serve as a showpiece for his resurgent Nazi Germany.

Later, Owens gave the medal to his friend, entertainer Bill "Bojangles" Robinson. SCP was consigned to sell it by Robinson's wife.

The auction, which is to begin on Nov. 20 and conclude on Dec. 7, features other notable sports memorabilia.

A 1927 jersey worn by Willie Foster of the Chicago American Giants in the Negro League is expected to fetch as much as $100,000.

There's also to be a Babe Ruth autographed bat and baseball, numerous Jackie Robinson items -- including game-used bats and an autographed ball -- as well as a robe, gloves and trunks worn by Muhammad Ali in his 1976 fight against Jimmy Young. 


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