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eBay History Facts, Selling Weird and Bizarre

Updated on April 13, 2015

eBay - Then and Now

It was September 4, 1995 in San Jose, California, when a computer programmer Pierre Omidyar put up "AuctionWeb" as part of a website for his online consulting firm Echo Bay Technology Group. Omidyar tried to register the domain name EchoBay.com, but a gold mining company Echo Bay Mines had already taken it. So he settled for the shortened domain name eBay.com. Since then eBay has become the largest online auction website not only in the United States, but around the world.

It had always been part of the saga that the very first items sold on eBay were the PEZ candy dispensers that Pam Wesley (Pierre Omidyar's fiancée) owned. Not so. Omidyar sold the very first item on eBay, his very own broken laser pointer. To his astonishment it had sold for $14.83.

To this day, eBay has millions of members who sell and buy on the site and has helped thousands of people start their own businesses. As of December 2008, over 700,000 people in the United States rely on their eBay sales as part of their income.

eBay has became so huge that it has websites located in the following markets:

North America: Canada, United States

Europe: Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Netherlands, Poland, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom

Asia Pacific: Australia, China, Hong Kong, India, Malaysia, New Zealand, Philippines, Singapore , South Korea, Taiwan

eBay's Pierre Omidyar, center, Meg Whitman and Jim Griffith in front of those Pez dispensers. September 4, 2005

By Jack Gruber, USA TODAY

Weird Stuff on eBay

Jenny We Have Your Number 867-5309 - Lastest Bizarre and One of the Most Expensive Sell on eBay

Chalk it up to another weird sell on eBay! This ended Feb-09-09 12:01:45 PST for $186,853.09. week prior to that, the bid was at $400,000. Apparently some of the bidders took themselves out. Perhaps they got scared they would end up paying that kind of money for a toilet door.

Here is the information taken right off the eBay site for the listing.

Selling my DJ company with the most famous phone number in HISTORY.... 867-5309!

Company: A Blast Entertainment Inc.

Phone: (201) 867-5309

This is one of the LAST remaining 867-5309 numbers in service. Receives between 8,000-10,000 Calls Per Year!!

***Many callers have informed me that I'm one of the only remaining 867-5309 numbers in service after attempting every area code in the US.***

Number is registered with Vonage (internet) phone company and is easily transferred with a simple modem that I will mail to you. All of the account transfer details are done easily online. Works Anywhere in the US!!

After receiving National and International attention from this auction, I will have a sit-down interview tonight on the Fox Business channel with David Asman on the show "America's Nightly Scoreboard." The story has made international headlines and the exposure ranges from UK and Holland to Japan and beyond. Just about every media outlet is following this auction closely to see who the winning bidder will be. I have multiple interviews lined up for after the auction closes and the media will be focused on 2 things for their coverage: 1) How much did it sell for? 2) Who bought it? Best of luck to all bidders!

This story has reached over 100 million people globally.

21 Weird, Bizarre or Just Plain Silly Stuff Sold on eBay

Sold on eBay in no particular order: (These items were found on many reference sites about eBay.)

1. Broken Laser Pointer: It was September 1995 and the beginning of eBay. Founder Pierre Omidyar, began with the listing of a single broken laser pointer Pierre had intended for the listing to be a test and was shocked when the item sold for $14.83.

2. U.S. Navy F/A-18A Hornet: A state brokerage in Virginia sold a U.S. Navy F/A-18A Hornet jet fighter on eBay for just over a million dollars. It was, in pieces, but they offered to put it back together and make it ready to fly for just another $9 million.

3. Wedding Dress: A guy sold he ex-wife's wedding dress. He modeled it, as well as writing a long screed about his ex-wife in the description. It sold for 3,850.

Ex-wife's wedding dress

4. Shoeless Joe Jackson's original "Black Betsy" bat: The Black Betsy weights more than 40 ounces and handmade of hickory. Jackson had the third highest career batting average of .356 and was known for a swing so perfect that was copied by Babe Ruth. This bat sold for $577,610.

What an 18 Year Old Woman was Selling

5. 18 Year old British Girl's Virginity: In order to pay off her college tuition, Cary's Copestakes put her virginity up for auction on eBay. The bid started at $10,000 and was taken up by a business man. He did not take her up on her service, but gave her the money in pity of her situation.

Doritos Cheese Pope Hat

6. Doritos Cheese Pope Hat: March 23, 2005, Salem, MA, the GoldenPalace.com, Internet casino most famous for their purchase of the Virgin Mary Grilled Cheese Sandwich, bought the Doritos chip for an unbelievable $1,209.

Vampire Killing Kit

7. Vampire Killing Kit: A seller from Oklahoma made $2,005.50 from this supposed 18th Century Vampire Killing Kit. It all came in a linden wood box, lined on the inside with maroon velvet. The seller claimed that the estimated value of the artifact was between $29,000 and $51,000

8. Bridgeville, California: The entire town. Bought on eBay twice within 3 years. The last time listed in June 2007. Selling price: $1,800,000.

9. Britney Spears Half Eaten Sandwich: Golden Palace Casino has purchased a half eaten egg salad sandwich for $500 also for an additional $20 they also purchased a nibbled on corn dog by Spears' ex husband Kevin Federline.

10. Britney Spears Chewed Gum: Someone picked up Britney Spears chewed gum at a London hotel and decided to sell it on eBay. Believe it or not they got $263 for it. I wonder if the fan who bought it, chewed the gum or framed it!

11. John F Kennedy Assassination Shooters Perch Window: The actual window and frame from which Lee Harvey Oswald shot and killed our 35th president, John F. Kennedy. 188 bids were placed and the winning bidder paid $3,001,501.00 on February 16th 2007.

John F Kennedy Assassination Shooters Perch Window

Kid Rock's French Toast

12. A half eaten piece of French toast from kid rock - over $3,000.

13. Someone sold their soul - $400.00

14. Elvis's ear piece - over $1,000.00

15. Ghost In A Jar: A man 2 jars and an old journal in a wooden box. He accidentally broke one jar and brought the other one home. Afterwords a ghost was terrorizing him. Apparently it came from the jar. He decided to sell this jar to anyone willing to take on the ghost. On June 05, 2003, this item sold for $50,922.

Ghost In A Jar

16. Woman Sells Right to Name Her Baby: Early 2005, when Melissa Heuschkel couldn't decide what to name her fourth child; she turned to the auction site eBay. Golden Palace casino won the bid for $15,500. The baby was named Golden Palace Benedetto. (Golden Palace has brought several weird items from eBay.)

17. Oldest known pair of Levi jeans sold in May 2001 for $46,432.

18. Justin Timberlake's partially-eaten French toast sold in March 2000 for $1025.

19. A woman's deceased father's walking cane (his ghost included) sold in December 2004 for $65,100.

20. A man's forehead for advertising space in January 2005 for $37,375.

21. Virgin Mary Grilled Cheese Sandwich: Diane Duyser, from Florida sold her grilled cheese sandwich that appeared to have the face of the Virgin Mary upon it. The item was purchased by an online casino, Goldenpalace.com for $28,000.

Sell McNugget on Ebay or Not!

Inspired by my trip to McDonalds, finding a strange shape Chicken McNugget and reading a bookmarked news article on THE 10 STRANGEST THINGS SOLD ON EBAY, List of 21 Weird, Bizarre or Just Plain Silly Stuff (I had found on various sources online.)

On Jan. 18, 2008, I had a coupon for buy one 10 pack Chicken McNuggets and get one free. I shared the other 10 pack with my daughter. As we were eating our McNuggets, I noticed that one of mine looked like a lamb. I told her to take a picture of it, which she did and then I set it aside.

My daughter had one that looked like a Cocker Spaniel. I said, "Hey we need to take a picture of that." She rolled her eyes and proceeded to eat it. I was horrified! I yelled, "Why did you eat that? We could have sold that on eBay!"

She laughed and said, "You weren't serious, were you?"

Of course I was serious! That Cocker Spaniel shaped nugget might help pay for her College. Who knows how much a funny shaped McNugget would sell for! After all I have been unemployed for a while. And our daughter was laid off during the summer from her part-time job at the University. Money has been getting tight. Despite the fact that I have been trying to make money online with my ebooktreesaver.com site. I joined some marketing websites but that did not work. Money isn't exactly pouring out of my computer. (Not just yet!) The problem is I don't lie about my success. I'm still trying to find my niche.

People have put more bizarre stuff on eBay than any other auction site. I'm not sure what the most money someone has made on something strange, bizarre or just plain stupid was. But on Nov. 23, 2004 a woman from Miami, Florida sold her 10 year old grilled cheese sandwich, (a bite out of it) which bore the image of the Virgin Mary for $28,000 on eBay. This Virgin Mary grilled cheese sandwich as been on many internet sites. Probably the most popular bizarre item sold on eBay.

Maybe my "Lamb McNugget" resembles one of the farm animals in the stable where Christ was born. Now wouldn't it be worth at least $20,000? I put it in a baggie, then in a plastic container and placed in on a shelf in the refrigerator. Perhaps if I make a plea on eBay, someone will take pity on my situation. Like the business man who gave $10,000 to Cary Copestakes, the 18 year old British girl who put up her virginity to help pay for college.

Anyway, I'm not really serious about selling it. I just want to play it out for awhile. After all, I don't do those silly things that other people do. Or do I?

Chicken McNugget or Lamb McNugget

You Be the Judge

Look closely! Do you see the ears, eyes and slit for the mouth?

Jan. 18, 2008 "Lamb" McNugget

Picture of a lamb

eBay can turn you Psychotic

This is what happens when you lose on eBay!

See this and other animals from my Unleash the Animals product line.

See my gallery at Zazzle

© 2009 Sandy Mertens

Last Thing you Sold or Bought on eBay - Was it Weird, Bizarre or Just Plain Silly?

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    • evelynsaenz1 profile image

      Evelyn Saenz 8 years ago from Royalton

      What inspiration! Maybe I could sell my toenails? I wonder if they have ghosts surrounding them.

      I am shaking my head in amazement of the odd and strange things people will sell and even buy.

      Great lens!

    • SandyMertens profile image

      Sandy Mertens 8 years ago from Frozen Tundra

      [in reply to Evelyn_Saenz] Do you have a special profile or uniqueness with your toenails?

    • JacquelineM LM profile image

      JacquelineM LM 8 years ago

      Very nice lens - I am shocked ot some of the "weird things" people will buy in there. Best of luck on the college fund, it could happen!

    • profile image

      3dMooNMaN 8 years ago

      I only have a short time to write so I will tell one sale I had on Ebay and come back later.

      I don't think they are all that super strange but did find something that I could not sell on Ebay that was very very... I don't know the word... Maybe intense would be the word for them. I will tell about those later maybe. I have to think about it as I have told myself never to talk about them. They were very intense. I had could not get the images out of my head for 3 months. I still can see some in my head just as if they were the first time I had looked at them. Maybe I will have to come back and tell about them.

      But any way one of my sales was a plastic kids wallet from universal studios with a picture of The Mummy on it. I paid $2.00 and sold it for $350.00. One of the best parts about it that made it sell that well was a red wooden stick inside of the wallet. interesting lens ! I have seen a few of these item sell on Ebay but some are new to me.. like the Ghost in the Jar.. 50,000 !!

    • profile image

      3dMooNMaN 8 years ago

      OOO !! I see the quistion ! The last thing I bought or sold !

      Well the best last thing was a Firecracker Label. I purchased a small pile of old labels on Ebay for around $5.00 and sold one Firecracker label back on Ebay out of the pile for Around $140.00

    • SandyMertens profile image

      Sandy Mertens 8 years ago from Frozen Tundra

      [in reply to 3dMooNMaN] Since you do well on eBay, if my Lamb McNugget doesn't sell, do you want a crack at it?

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      Too funny!

    • profile image

      3dMooNMaN 8 years ago

      I looked it up on Ebay but could not find it... I have dial up so the feed dose not show for me on here. What did it sell for ???

    • profile image

      PosterChildSmile 8 years ago

      Wow! This really is weird....! - I can see the images as plain as day! 5*'s

    • profile image

      tdove 8 years ago

      Thanks for joining G Rated Lense Factory!

    • rewards4life info profile image

      rewards4life info 8 years ago

      Vampire Killing Kit is Brilliant! Great lens!

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      Wonder of woners - How did anyone ever get hold of the window through which JFK was shot? The whole floor of the building is a museum now. I need to find out about this. Excellent lens!

    • draik profile image

      draik 8 years ago

      Thanks for joining Shopping Online Group. Your lens was added to our feature module and it will appear randomly.

    • profile image

      julieannbrady 8 years ago

      You know it's truly amazing to consider how eBay started with such a simple idea and blossomed into such a mega-poly! It sure helped change the way I think of buying and selling -- online!

    • profile image

      Oosquid 8 years ago

      It all started with a broken laser pointer - Amazing! Really enjoyed reading this lens, thanks for making it. 5 stars.

    • religions7 profile image

      religions7 8 years ago

      Great lens - you've been blessed by a squidoo angel :)

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      This lens makes me want to look into doing something on Ebay. Thank you.

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      This lens makes me want to look into doing something on Ebay. Thank you.

    • profile image

      Alex_Mayor 8 years ago

      This is a cool Lens, i enjoyed reading it :). I am writing a lens about ebay and i will link it to this one.

      greets, Alex

    • rhardi profile image

      rhardi 8 years ago

      I love this lens.... Its Awesome.......

    • desilegend profile image

      desilegend 6 years ago

      Exciting lens! I used ebay before a lot

    • yayas profile image

      yayas 5 years ago

      I recently bought books an' plastic canvas patterns. I often love to shop for books, as I can get the older books that I love an' I can usually get 'em for less than I would at a bookstore.

    • Anthony Altorenna profile image

      Anthony Altorenna 5 years ago from Connecticut

      This is such a fun and interesting lens! It is amazing what people will buy and sell. Nicely done!

    • EdTecher profile image

      Heidi Reina 5 years ago from USA

      One person's trash is another person's wonderfully bizarre treasure. I stick to more pedestrian items on eBay like electronics.

    • Jadelynx-HP profile image

      Tracey Boyer 5 years ago from Michigan

      This lens made me laugh out loud, thanks for that ! Well done :)

    • MillBucks profile image

      MillBucks 5 years ago

      What an interesting write-up, love the humor and the layout. It was a pleasure visiting and learning more about Ebay, I had no idea how it started, thanks for the enlightenment.

    • profile image

      three-em 5 years ago

      wow,, very interesting content,,

      i've never aware about the history before i read it here..

      thank you for share

    • Lady Lorelei profile image

      Lorelei Cohen 5 years ago from Canada

      I think that I am going to have to start taking a closer look at the foods I eat. I could be making a killing on eBay!

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      I am currently selling my DAYS IN THE POORHOUSE on eBay. With any luck, I'll end up with a lot fewer DAYS IN THE POOR HOUSE!

    • Wednesday-Elf profile image

      Wednesday-Elf 4 years ago from Savannah, Georgia

      I've never sold anything weird, bizarre or silly on eBay, but it was fun to read about those who have -- and sold them for high prices. Amazing.

    • josietook profile image

      josietook 3 years ago

      Some strange stuff sells. Great lens!!

    • legomanultra profile image

      legomanultra 3 years ago

      Pretty cool, and interesting, lens!

    • ReviewsfromSandy profile image
      Author

      Sandy Mertens 3 years ago from Wisconsin

      @legomanultra: Thanks.

    • sheilamarie78 profile image

      sheilamarie78 2 years ago

      That's hilarious, Sandy. Yes, I can see the lamb resemblance, though I don't think I'd bid on it..

    • ReviewsfromSandy profile image
      Author

      Sandy Mertens 2 years ago from Wisconsin

      sheilamarie78 People have bid on strange things.

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