Keith Shoff had hopes of walking out of Martin Library with another signed photograph of New York Yankee star Derek Jeter on Sunday.

"I thought I was going to be the lucky one. I even have Jeter's number," Shoff said, holding up his paper auction paddle blazoned with the number two, the number Jeter wears on the back of his pin-striped uniform.

But it wasn't meant to be for the Red Lion man. With Jeter set to retire at the end of the year, the photograph sold at a much higher price than Fran Keller, the library's director of marketing and auction organizer, thought it would.

It fetched $250, the highest price a single item was sold for during the annual Celebrity Auction at the 159 E. Market St. library.

That adds to the more than $4,000 raised, which will be used to purchase children's book, Keller said.

That's about $2,000 less than what was raised last year. Keller said the lower amount is likely because there were fewer items up for grabs this year.

Going twice: All items that were up for grabs were donated by celebrities and ranged from a signed copy of a John le Carré novel to a Chicago Blackhawks hockey puck signed by Hall of Famer Bobby Hull.

Keller accumulates the items throughout the year by contacting celebrities.

"When the mail comes, it's like Christmas. You never know what they'll send you," she said. "All these people send it at the price of a letter."

Some of the items were sold at seemingly low amounts.


Bidding for a signed copy of former vice president Dick Cheney's book, "Heart," topped out at $22. A signed photograph of the Dalai Lama fared a bit better, fetching $36.

Mary Yeaple of York City said she won a signed copy of Northern Ireland musician Sir James Galway's book, "The Man with the Golden Flute," and a three-disc set from the band The Kingston Trio.

Sold: As the auctioneer rumbled on, touting each item, bidders waved their paper paddles, raising the price. But some items had a slow start.

A signed photo of musician Yo Yo Ma dipped to just $2 before it recovered to sell for $14.

The auction attracted about 50 people.

"It's a good way to spend a Sunday afternoon," Shoff said.

Most of the bidders are faithful, coming year after year, Keller said.

"We have a sold core of people who come every year with some new blood coming in," she said.

— Reach Greg Gross at