Some of the bidders at the Natural History Auction are revealed…
As seen on chait.com:
PRIVATE COLLECTOR SNAGS RARE FOSSIL AT AUCTION; RIPLEY’S BELIEVE IT OR NOT WALKS AWAY WITH THE MOON
Beverly Hills, CA – An extremely rare saber-toothed tiger skull –
considered the “Great American Fossil- from the La Brea Tar Pits
sold at auction Sunday, May 2, 2004 to Stuart Pivar, a private collector from Manhattan for $223,050. (Setting a new record for the highest price
ever paid for a fossil). The special Natural History auction was held at
the I.M. Chait Gallery in Beverly Hills, CA., in conjunction with Natural
History specialist David Herskowitz, and its highlight was unquestionably the fossil of the tiger, which ranged throughout North America during the
last Ice Age and is estimated to be twelve to twenty thousand years old.
Fossils from this locality are seldom seen for sale due to their rarity in
private collections and the fact that the La Brea pits site has been closed
to private collecting for over 40 years. Several museum officials had
also expressed their disappointment that this rare fossil might fall into
the hands of a private collector.
Mr. Pivar purchased several of the 250 prized lots available at the
auction, with purchases totaling more than $300,000.
Considered to be among the rarest substances on Earth, lunar specimens are highly sought-after by collectors and museums, and the .536 gram specimen that was available on Sunday fetched $4,980 -an indication that lively interest and bidding in this special item drove its estimated sales price
of $1,100-$1,500 “to the moon.” The winning bidder on this Moon Rock was Ripley’s Believe It or Not, which spent over $200,000 at the auction.
Museum quality specimens, minerals, meteorites, fossils and dinosaur
eggs were other items featured at Sunday’s auction, which totaled more
than $1.2 million in sales.