Oh Say Can You See …half a million dollars?
A rare first edition of the sheet music for "The Star-Spangled Banner" sold for $506,500 at Christie's Auction House in New York Friday, doubling pre-auction estimates of its value and setting a world auction record for sheet music.
The two-page piece of sheet music, published by a Baltimore printer in 1814, was sold to a private U.S. collector who wishes to remain anonymous, Christie's spokeswoman Sung-Hee Park said. It is one of only 11 copies of that first printing known to exist, and apparently remains the only one in private hands.
"It's always great when something goes over its estimate," Park said, "and when it makes for a world auction record, that's icing on the cake."