University Archives held its August 17, 2022 sale yesterday. Rare Autographs, Manuscripts & Books proved a banner success. Over 530 lots whipped across the auction block at an average of 70 lots per hour, with nearly 1,000 tuning in to watch the sale live. Over 3,500 bids were presented live or on four online platforms. As usual, our English-speaking customer base from the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, and South Africa dominated the bidding, yet collectors from Germany, Cyprus, China, and Greece also developed an online presence.
EARLY AMERICAN & PRESIDENTIAL
Americana and presidential collectors made a fine showing. Lot 13, a 1756 receipt for the Pennsylvania Gazette engrossed and signed by Benjamin Franklin, crossed the auction block for $18,750 including the buyer’s premium, exceeding its high estimate by 50%. A signature clip belonging to John Adams, measuring just 3.5” x 1” but presented within a handsome display, sold for $8,125 including the tip, or 60% greater than its high estimate. Lot 121 was a winning presidential portrait of Ronald Reagan signed and inscribed by him as, "To a great American! / Best regards / Ronald Reagan." It sold for more than six times its high estimate, or $4,687 including the buyer’s premium.
The Little Rock Nine, Rosa Parks, and Muhammad Ali led our Civil Rights collecting category. A 20” x 16” photograph signed and inscribed with over 270 words by Elizabeth Eckford, recalling her experiences as one of the first black students permitted to attend the previously segregated Little Rock Central High School, sold for $5,312 including the buyer’s premium. That’s over seventeen times the high estimate! Lot 298 was an educational brochure entitled “Human Rights in Islam” signed and inscribed by Muhammad Ali, PSA/DNA slabbed and graded Mint 9. It sold for $625 including the tip, or 40% higher than its high estimate.
Collectors of military memorabilia appreciated the diversity and scope of our August auction items; manuscript documents, photographs, posters, and relics ranged from the 17th Century through the War in Afghanistan. Lot 404 was a glossy poster signed and dated by Robert J. O’Neill, the U.S. Navy Seal who claims to have killed Osama Bin Laden in the May 2011 raid. It sold for over three times its high estimate, or $1,750 including the buyer’s premium. Two iconic photographs from the Vietnam War era, Sal Veder’s Pulitzer Prize-winning “Burst of Joy” signed by the photographer, and Nick Ut’s Pulitzer Prize-winning “Napalm Girl” signed and inscribed by the victim Kim Phuc, exceeded their high estimates. The first sold for $1,375 including the buyer’s premium, or over three times its high estimate; and the second changed hands for $5,625, or over ten times its high estimate.
These were just a few of the highlights from our incredible August sale.
Thank you so much for your interest. We’re always interested in hearing from you. Contact us today if you have items like these that you’d like to consign or sell.
Our next sale is scheduled for September 2022.