The pants, manufactured by Levi Strauss & Co., was sold by an auction house in Maine on May 15 to a buyer in Southeast Asia.
Daniel Soules of the auction house said, “He is someone who loves old Levis. “
At this age, the jeans come with a fascinating history. The fabric was produced by a New Hampshire plant on the east coast, but the pants were made in San Francisco on the west coast.
The first owner of the pants was Solomon Warner, a store owner in Arizona who bought them in 1893. Warner had barely worn them before his death, so the jeans remained in good condition because they were passed down in the family over years, helping to preserve their value.
Levi had bought the pants for $ 50,000. Several features of the pants were distinctly different from today’s model, like their unique back pocket, and their lack of belt buckles due to the popularity of the 19th century suspenders.
Vintage denim is a sought-after object among many collectors. A pair of 501 jeans made in the 1880s sold for $ 60,000 to a Japanese collector, said Soules, and another pair, from 1888, sold for six figures.
Analysts have said that jeans are coveted because they have been deeply rooted in American culture after their first appearance during the years of Western expansion.