Special Fundraising Events


We are proud to announce that one of our numerous recently acquired donations is a priceless Canadian heritage collection of the personal effects of Dr. James Naismith, the founder of the sport of basketball. Originally, this collection of this most important Canadian,  was to have been purchased by Library and National Archives Canada, in particular through their private archives division,  for a quarter of a million dollars, the price that it cost a group of like minded people who wanted to make the material available to all Canadians. I was one of those people. The federal government of Canada first had to prepare an independent fair market value appraisal. This is a standard  requirement for government purchases. The federal archives spent at least ten thousand dollars on an independent study which clearly indicated the collection was worth a lot more if broken up, than the asking price for the collection intact.  In fact, the world’s leading basketball auction house, Leyland’s, estimated the collection would fetch over a million Canadian dollars and this letter was reproduced in this study.  Still, the government of Canada tried to change the terms of the deal by offering to buy a few items and suggesting the bulk of this collection be donated to them.

Naturally, the deal died and now, with the collection donated to a private sanctuary, it is up for grabs in a piecemeal fashion for the first time since it was purchased. The material, by the way, came directly  from a daughter of Dr. James Naismith who put it up for sale through Heritage Auction Galleries in Houston, Texas ten years ago.  If you do a google search you can easily find copies of this original Heritage Auction catalog for sale which has longer descriptions of each item we are offering in this sale. Please note, the items that did not sell through Heritage did sell through various other auction houses after that landmark sale. The consortium that I am part of did not buy the entire catalogue but did bring in more than half of the entire proceeds for this sale. The group also purchased follow-up items at various other auctions years after the Heritage sale. The goal in assembling this archives was to provide content for any museum which would show the evolving  life of Dr. Naismith as well as the evolution of his sport of basketball. So, the early lots included his earliest photographs as a child, his report cards. It evolved into acquiring his Olympic diaries when basketball first became an Olympic sport. It ended with a telegram sent by his son announcing to family members that their dad had passed away. And many other lots that filled in the gaps of his remarkable life and the growth of basketball.

We are reproducing the Canadian government commissioned study in its entirety (click here to read it) to allow prospective buyers to study the content about fair market value of each item. We will allow prospective purchasers access to examine in person any items through  a private appointment in downtown Ottawa.

If there is an institution or private individual who wishes to acquire the entire collection, which includes items not listed in this government study, the cost is $225,000 U.S. dollars for the entire collection.

Meanwhile, if you see any item in this study and wish to purchase it, kindly note the abbreviated description of that item and the evaluation price. That, in U.S. dollars, is what we are prepared to accept as a purchase price. 

If you find there is no price listed beside a given item, there is a reason for this. Technically speaking, the public archives do not pay for  non printed items and so those items were expected to be part of the deal of purchasing the entire collection. So if you have an interest in any of those items that do not have evaluated prices, email us and we will let you know what the buy it now price is. 

Our fundraising sale of this historical collection begins at 12 noon EST this Saturday, August 25, 2018. In order to purchase an item simply email us that you want it providing a phone number and time you can be reached. First come first served but we will not entertain any interest that is sent before the auction opens. No exceptions. If you are the chosen buyer, we will call you immediately and offer you various payment options. Again, you may elect to view in person the material in Ottawa.  

If we sell even one item, this eliminates the possibility of selling the entire group as one lot and means the entire collection will be sold off, lot by lot, until everything is sold.

We are not content to give away these items but at the same time the prices being offered are below market value if you take into consideration inflation and other factors, not to forget that this is a fundraiser for a cause. 

Our email address is: wonderfulpens@gmail.com

Our telephone number for queries on any items is (613)284-1672

Please note we reserve the right to reject any bids for any reason. If you wish to buy an item the first step is to send us an email indicating you will buy the item and pay for it within five days of our confirmation that you are the new owner.  Emails will be considered based on order received aft er the date of the opening of the auction. Payment details will be sorted out after you have been notified that you are the successful buyer.

If you require shipping services these will be arranged free of charge.

You should take great pride in understanding that your bid is in effect for a cause: a donation to James Naismith, our mascot cow at this sanctuary. A cow who was slated as a veal sandwich and is now arguably the largest cow in Canada and likely one of the largest on the planet. He requires a special hoof shoot to tend to ongoing infections in his hoofs and this machine cost in excess of one hundred thousand dollars and has a wait list of almost a year to acquire through custom manufacturing companies in Spain and  the United States. All monies collected are directly funnelled into the compassionate care of the animals here on Otter Creek Animal Sanctuary and Shelter.

Will you pause for paws? Make a difference and win an important piece of Canadian history.

Click here to read the confidential Government of Canada study evaluating market value of the James Naismith Collection.