(Reuters) – A 1939 comic book that introduced Marvel characters for the first time sold for a record $1.26 million at auction, Dallas-based auctioneer Heritage Auctions said on Thursday.
“Marvel Comics No. 1” features the first appearances of characters including Human Torch and the Sub-Mariner. Decades later, Marvel debuted Spider-Man, the Incredible Hulk and other superheroes that have headlined recent blockbuster movies.
The item was originally purchased at a newsstand by a Pennsylvania mailman. The book’s condition was rated as 9.4 on a scale of 1 to 10, the auctioneer said.
The sale was part of a four-day auction of vintage comic books and comic art.
The previous record-holder for a Marvel Comics book was a 1962 issue featuring the first appearance of Spider-Man, which sold for $1.1 million in 2011.
A handful of other comic books have topped the $1 million price tag. In 2014, a Superman comic was purchased for $3.2 million on eBay.
Reporting by Lisa Richwine in Culver City, Calif.; Editing by Nick Zieminski