I had contacted Heritage to sell some rare autographed Bill Graham concert posters and the most prized by collectors . My partner managed the backstage of the world famous Fillmore and Warfield Theatres in San Francisco for 20yrs He is very much loved by the performers and has a unique gift of giving that can only be expirenced. Written and signed by performers great and small are the sentiments felt for him and covered every square inch of his office walls and ceiling.
These show signed posters are nonexistant outside of BGP's archives, and he was responsible for furnishing the archives with autographed posters. In fact he started the practice. Everything signed went through him. Unfortunately he developed a mental illness that ended his career,has left him permanently disabled and under psychiatric care.
On 3-25-11. David Tosh and Gerry Shrum from Heritage Auctions came out.
My partner wasn't to attend the meeting but provenance being everything I asked him to come to answer any questions. His illness was very apparent and It was made clear to Mr Tosh and Mr Shrum that I was to handle all the negotiations. We discussed and agreed that we were to get 85% of the hammer price. All fees, insurance, shipping, PSA/DNA authenticity etc.was their responsibility. (2) That Ebay be used as was advertised.(3) There would be a 500.00 minimum per poster and in the cases of lesser known performers we would group 2 posters together but there would be no grouping of posters without my approval.
Thinking that we chose the right auction house and as a show of good faith we gave both of them autographed posters that they saw and liked as well as sent Garry 20+ from a Slims venue (easily worth about 3000.00). I left my partner and them to go through the rest of the posters to get a guitar for auction and upon my return signed some paperwork and asked if I needed to sign anything for the posters. They stated no and that a formal appraisal and inventory would be forthcoming
Two months go by and no word from Heritage.I call. Gary says they were being authenticated and hits us with a 600.00 PSA bill for a service that couldn't identify, or wrongly identified, popular artists signatures and for an appraisal we never got. Two weeks before the bidding was to begin, the posters came up on their web site with errors. While 1 correction was made, the errors continued and when I inquired about them, communication was cut off. I was left in the dark while they proceeded to group posters as they wished with opening bids half of what was discussed. These a**holes tried to tell me noone was interested in autographed posters. WTF?
I couldn't believe it. Desperate for any other contact information I was looking through my partners paperwork and discovered they had entered into a seperate contract with my partner.They scratched my name and replaced it with his.Garry did this when I left to get the guitar and didn't tell me . It was a day or 2 before bidding was to start.Since they wouldn't talk to me I had my partner call and when Garry picked up I got on the phone. I informed Mr Shrum that they entered into a contract with someone who was incapable and they had no contract.I gave Garry the option of pulling the posters out of the auction or setting the minimums at 500. as orginally agreed.
Neither was done nor was ebay used. As a result only 1 poster met the minimum at 550. It was Jerry Garcia band signed promo poster which easily should have brought 3500. I have found our Allman Brothers band signed drum head selling online for 3200. They sold it for 250.00. Their were 38 posters with top artists like David Bowie, Guns n Roses, Ron Wood, Pete Townsend, Tom Petty etc.easily worth over 40,000. in the retail market.We got 5200.
If that wasn't bad enough it took 3 months to get the rest of our posters and the guitar back . They broke the plex cover to the display case and shorted us, 16 posters. They left here with 245 items and sold 38. 245-38= 207 posters should have been returned. They returned 191. 207-191= 16 missing items. This is by their own accounting.I've been very patient and have given them more than enough time to determine what happened to the posters. They ignore and mock my questions. When they do respond its ambiguous and use jargon speak that's meant to decieve and mislead you.
Trying to resolve anything with thes people is hopeless. WTF?. Did these people go straight to prison from the sandbox or what? Thinking he might want to see what's going on in his company, I had sent Mr. Greg Rohan (president) the correspondence between Garry and myself exposing Garry and hoped that he would intervene.(some of the posters that were missing are shown to be not included in the shippment). He didn't. Instead, I was sent to Mr Rob Gacia and the bullsh*t started all over again.
What most pisses me off about all of this is what they did to my partner and best friend. He's the nicestest person you could ever want to meet and wouldn't think twice about giving you the shirt off his back if you needed it. He's on disability and selling these posters were to help him out financially and to get him the help he needs. He generously gave Shrum and Tosh posters and these greedy shisters turn around and steal from him. Their bullsh*t so stressed out my partner that he ended up spending 2 weeks in the hospital over Christmas. F**k You Heritage. Heritage states in their ad "a worry free expirence" . Nothing could be farther from the truth. You caused a lot of senseless damage(about 50,000. plus a hospital bill) and now turn your back on the mess you made. WRONG.
Do not do business with these swindlers. They falsely advertise themselves. They are fraudulent, unscroupulous thieves who are engaging in unfair and deceptive business practices and committing grand theft larceny. They have breached their fidicuary duties with actions that are unconsionable, immoral, unethical and they could care less, they operate with impunity.
I wouldn't buy anything from these con artists as well. You don't know by what illicit means they acquired the goods you purchase and if Heritage can't make things right, people will sue to get it back.