The auction featured hundreds of GI Joe action figures, many of them, like the nurse, in the original boxes. All came from the same single-owner collection. The 1967 nurse was the highlight of the auction, hammering down to a bidder online for $4,200. A second nurse without the original box sold for $1,300.
In total, over 400 lots were sold, including a 1969 GI Joe Aquanaut in the original box, which brought $1,400, and a 1966 GI Joe Action Soldier Green Beret, which sold for $1,200. Overall, the highest performing items were all from GI Joe’s early days.
Hasbro introduced the GI Joe line in 1964. In response to the then commonly held belief that boys should not play with dolls, the company used the term “action figure” in its marketing. The turn of phrase, and the toys themselves, grew to be so iconic that GI Joe was inducted into the National Toy Hall of Fame in Rochester, NY, in 2003.
Other high points of the sale included a 1964 GI Joe Black Action Soldier, one of the first toys of its kind to be marketed specifically to African American children. Mint in the original box, it hammered down for $850.
The sale was held at the company’s Harrisburg, PA, auction house, with bidders participating both live and online. Prices quoted above are all hammer prices.