I have never understood why it matters to so many to get someone's signature.
What is the emotional value? What is the purpose?
In spite of all the athletes, singers, actors and such that I favor, there is no one whose autograph I would value. Nice to meet them, nice to shake their hands, but I wouldn't go out of my way to do even that for most.
I wanted this as a kid I'll admit but now as an adult, I would consider myself somewhat cognitively challenged if I was to ever ask a pro athlete for an autograph, unless of course doing so would or could garner me some significant cash.
As a kid, I used to have autographs of the 'Riders Tom Campana, Bob Macoritti & Al Ford... don't know what happened to those... I tried to get Bill Baker's but didn't have a pen. I probably would not ask for autographs now, as they are meaningless to me.
I have a book of autographs from a Labour Day classic - unfortunately the value is degraded by having Lyle Bauer's signature on it. But its a nice book - approx. 25-28 sigs from that game including Bill Baker (1/2 bombers, 1/2 Riders)
Best autograph piece I ever did have was a 1953 Blue Bomber postcard signed by 20+ bombers including Bud Grant, Norm Hill, Neil Armstrong, etc. Hoth has it now - he posted it on blue bomber history thread.
Have a 1975 WHA Winnipeg Jets stick with 20 autographs - Hull, Hedberg, Nilson, Sjoberg, Teddy Green, etc. Game used by Hexi Riharanta.
Ken Ploen - autographed biography.
Gerry James - autographed bio.
A signature is one’s personal account or stamp and record of time and place and event etc. Plus - in most cases it was done as a single, personal gesture towards the autograph seeker. It creates and evokes memories, can be especially valuable if the person is notorious for something. I have some great autographs over the years, very few of which were planned: John Travolta, Tom Cruise, John Elway, Johnny Cash, Dan Marino, Hulk Hogan, Shaquille O’Neill, Ray Liotta, Drew Barrymore, Kreskin, David Copperfield, Criss Angel, Penn & Teller, Britney Spears, Rod Stewart - none of these were planned, just right time and place - over many years.
Have many many more autographs of athletes (football and hockey mostly) from over the years - which were planned when attending games or events. Funny thing - I distinctly remember each and every incident where I got each autograph from each individual. Tons of good memories, for me anyway. Most valuable autographed keepsake is an official CFL ball signed by every player and coach from the 2007 Sask. Roughriders Grey Cup winning team, signed about 2 hours after the game when they all returned to the hotel for the party. Good times.
As a kid I used to collect autographs, I'm not sure why; maybe it was an excuse to interact with my heroes. But I'm glad I did because when I recently found my old autograph book, in a box at the back of a wardrobe, it brought back a lot of happy memories.
I suppose the modern day equivalent is the selfie with a sportstar which so many fans seem to want to get.