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Rose Mary
By Rosemary McKittrick
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Kirk’s metallic-gold hero tunic; $20,375. Photo courtesy of MastroNet
It was the most celebrated Utopian world on television, a world where equality and decency triumphed over swords and slaughter. It was "Star Trek."

A modern tale unfolding in outer space, "Star Trek" mixed popular culture with classical myth and ended up pocketing the hearts of millions. Whether they were clashing with the Klingons or Romulans, Captain Kirk and his crew could always be counted on to handle the hostility.

Gene Roddenberry, the show’s creator, saw human beings as an evolving species that were only going to get better. In his eyes the future was something positive and space exploration was part of it.

His story lines, full of tolerance and cooperation served as a way station for kids growing up with the show as well as their families who sat watching beside them. It was a lesson in hope from an invented universe and the gravitational pull was remarkable.

No one knew going in what an enormous cult-following "Star Trek" and its subsequent spin-offs would have. The original series ended after three seasons but through reruns the “trekkie-phenomenon” mustered speed. Today there are an estimated 1,600 sites related to "Star Trek" on the World Wide Web.

With that much interest a whole market in "Star Trek" collectibles cropped up that seems to boldly go where no collectibles have gone before. Novels, comics, action figures, starships, trading cards, Pez dispensers, banks, watches, and postcards, the list goes on and on.

For many of these collectibles, the supply is high and the demand is low. What’s big is the tangible connection collectors feel for something they treasure. This reaffirms the old adage that you should collect what you love and forget about profiting.

The most desirable "Star Trek" collectibles are objects directly connected to the show, movies and its characters. I’m talking about objects like props, costumes, original art work, scripts, and final production sketches. For the diehard Trekkie collector, it doesn’t get any better.

Say you were paying really close attention to the early "Star Trek" TV series and had a particular fascination with the 39th episode of the show called “Mirror, Mirror.”

In it the subject of whether Kirk and his crew members are really evil is explored in a tale of opposite universes. High intrigue. It’s seldom listed lower than within the top 10 best episodes ever made.

The most recognizable object from “Mirror Mirror” just might be the metallic-gold hero tunic and sash Kirk wore. The tunic is in pristine condition, completely original, just the way it was when Kirk took it off. It’s also the only complete tunic from the episode in existence.

A bidder at a MastroNet, Inc phone and internet auction paid $20,375 to have it on Aug. 27, 2003. MastroNet is located in Oak Park, Ill.

Here are some current values for other Star Trek items offered in the auction.

Star Trek memorabilia

Original layout design drawing for the first "Star Trek" soundstage; it’s the Enterprise broken down for filming; by Matt Jeffries; unsigned; $1,516.

Original conceptual sketch and final design drawings for the Klingon Battle Cruiser; 2; by Matt Jeffries; one is signed; $2,245.

Command duty uniform; attributed to Chekov; "Star Trek’s" second season; standard gold velour jersey tunic of the Command Division; good condition; $3,255.

Original phaser design illustrations; for Type-1 and Type-2 phasers; 2; by Matt Jeffries; signed; $4,333.

Gorn costume; one of Kirk’s most famous opponents; gold embroidered torso-length tunic with matching sash; minimal wear; $6,167.

Original concept and final production drawings for first U.S.S. Enterprise; 2; NCC-1701; flagship for the fleet; by Matt Jeffries; unsigned; $7,225.

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