125-Year-Old Vintage Levi’s Denim Jeans Sell For $100,000

Eric CharbonneauAP Images

While styles come and go over the decades, a great pair of denim never goes out of style. People with old Levi’s sitting around may be shocked to hear that a pair of 125-year-old vintage Levi’s sold for an astonishing $100,000.

According to a Detroit News report, the Levi Strauss & Co. created the vintage denim in 1893. In 2016, the jeans were up for auction, but they failed to sell. However, this time, Daniel Buck Auctions sold the long-lasting Levi’s to a buyer somewhere in Southeast Asia, Fortune reported.

While the details about the denim’s current owner aren’t available publically, the jeans’ original owner was Solomon Warner, who purchased them in 1893. Warner worked as a shopkeeper in the Arizona Territory. In those days, jeans didn’t come with belt loops because men used suspenders to keep their pants from falling. Plus, the style of the vintage Levi’s included only one pocket on the backside and a button fly.

While the denim used to manufacture the near record-setting jeans came from a New Hampshire Mill, Levi’s in San Francisco actually produced the pair. As for sizing, the waist measures 44 inches and the inseam is 36 inches, which gives some insight into the garment’s original owner; he must have been a big-boned man.

The pair remained in excellent condition due to the fact that Warner wore them only a few times before becoming ill. After that, the jeans were stored for decades in a trunk.

According to Daniel Buck Soules from Daniel Buck Auctions, the buyer’s representative came and inspected the jeans to ensure their condition before the buyer decided to make the private purchase. Soules said that the jeans’ new owner is a person who likes old Levi’s.

While this sale didn’t entirely create a new record sale for vintage denim, it is among the highest selling pairs of old Levi’s. A pair of 501s from the 1880s sold for $60,000, and another pair from the 1800s went for more than $100,000 in the past.

The most iconic denim brand in the world, German immigrant Levi Strauss founded Levi Strauss & Co. in San Francisco in May, 1853. On May 20, 1873, Levi Strauss and Jacob Davis received a patent on a copper rivet, which was used to reinforce the points of strain on denim pants. They began creating denim overalls in the 1870s, and they started manufacturing Levi’s 501 jeans in the 1890s.

Since then, people from all walks of life have donned Levi’s, including the shopkeeper who formerly owned this 125-year-old pair that recently sold. A good pair of these jeans can last for centuries.