Baileys Harbor’s Joe Miller carries a picture of his mother everywhere he goes with his collection of sports cards, but not for the reason you might think. Miller credits his mother with saving his collection at a time when many parents would have thrown them out or given them away. He bought many of his cards as a child for as little as a penny, but Miller didn’t pick up the hobby again in earnest until he went to a card show when he was in his 50s. Since then, he has collected cards from all of the major sports dating back as far as the 1910s. Miller enjoys the historical and social aspects of card collecting.
Card collecting has experienced a surge in popularity in the past year due to the pandemic. The website eBay announced earlier this year a 142 percent surge in domestic sales in 2020. According to the Action Network, specific cards of Mickey Mantle, Michael Jordan, Tom Brady, and Wayne Gretzky have sold for more than $2 million. It is a part of the hobby Miller does not like.
Miller is putting a portion of his collection up for sale Saturday and Sunday at a sports card show he is hosting at his Baileys Harbor home. A portion of the sales he is donating to the Door County Food Pantry Coalition. You can listen to our full conversation with Miller on our Podcasts page.