by Brooke Kennedy
Several lots from Rarities caught the interest of bidders and media outlets alike. In particular the two tickets from the evening of Lincoln’s assassination received coverage from Fox, the Associated Press, and the BBC. Executive vice president Bobby Livingston spoke with CBS Saturday Morning to discuss the view those two ticket holders would have had of the events.
Transcontinental outlets such as the Daily Mail and Irish Central shared the story of a key originally held by a saloon steward aboard the Titanic – which later sold for $131,250. And, in addition, news outlets took notice of some of Rarities’ hidden gems.
On September 15, 2023, Advocate covered RR’s offering of a letter written by Sigmund Freud on the topic of homosexuality. His letter came as a response to a concerned writer who might have known a gay person, and Freud outlines his thoughts on the subject.
“The homosexual’s case in today’s society is not as hopeless as it may seem to you,” Freud emphasizes. “Several of the greatest men in history were homosexuals.”
The letter puts into perspective Freud’s progressive views on sexuality at a time where it was not readily accepted.
“The letter shows Freud’s understanding beyond a binary understanding of sexuality,” according to Advocate. “He acknowledges the fluidity that sexuality can take throughout someone’s life.”
At the time of Advocate’s article, the letter had a high bid of $6,655, but soared to a price of $56,250 during the Remarkable Rarities live event.
The Watergate scandal resulted in the impeachment of President Richard Nixon, and bidders had a chance at the very gavel that sealed his resignation. Pete Rodino’s gavel used during the impeachment hearings caught the attention of the Washington Examiner. At the time of the article’s publication, bids for this item stood at $6,000.
“The gavel is signed by Rodino, who died in 2005 at 96,” said the Examiner. “What’s more, it is signed to one of the key Republicans on that Watergate committee, former Rep. Carlos J. Moorhead of California.”
Accompanying the gavel in this lot were a letter signed by Rodino giving the gavel to Moorhead and a copy of the hearings signed by 26 members of the House Judiciary Committee. RR’s estimate for this item stood at $3,000, with the final price standing at $10,000.
Steve Jobs iPad
In Hawaii in 2010, Kailua-Kona dentist Frank Sayre received a call to perform an emergency procedure for a “high profile” client. Late in the afternoon, Apple co-founder Steve Jobs walked through his door. In exchange for his speedy fix however, Sayre refused financial compensation for the treatment.
“Instead, Sayre asked Jobs for a signed iPad as a donation for a silent auction for the Daniel Sayre Memorial Foundation,” said Hawaii News.
Jobs could hardly be described as a prolific signer especially later in life, but he still granted Sayre’s request.
“We decided to take the top 3 bidders at the silent auction and pit them against each other in a live auction during dinner. I was trying to bid up the price and was one of those top 3,” said Sayre in his statement of provenance. “One of the bidders dropped out and it was just one other guy and myself… Someone in the audience yelled out, ‘C’mon, let the Doc have it,’ and the other guy dropped out and I ended up with it.”
Unlike Sayre’s live auction, this iPad found a new home for a selling price of $40,000.