The sunken treasure that's out of this world...
The Apollo 11 mission was a milestone for mankind, and it inspires collectors to this day...
Paul Fraser Collectibles, Wednesday 11 April 2012
This week a story caught my eye that, to me, says everything about the power of historic memorabilia.
In 1969 a five-year old boy by the name of Jeff Bezos sat in front of the television with his family and, along with 530 million people around the world, watched as Neil Armstrong took his "one small step" onto the surface of the Moon.
As NASA's chief historian Steven Dick commented in an interview with National Geographic magazine; "Putting a man on the moon not only inspired the nation, but also the world."
It certainly inspired Jeff Bezos.
"Millions of people were inspired by the Apollo Program. I was five years old when I watched Apollo 11 unfold on television, and without any doubt it was a big contributor to my passions for science, engineering, and exploration."
If the name Jeff Bezos sounds familiar to you, there's a good reason - in 1994 he took his experience as a computer analyst on Wall Street and founded an online retail business called Amazon.
The rest, as they say, is history.
But the power of watching the Apollo 11 mission stayed with him, as it has stayed with millions of others who watched it live. And it turned into a life-long passion which led him to the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean.
A journey into the deep...
In 2011 Bezos decided to mount a search for the five enormous F-1 Rocket engines which launched Apollo 11 in such spectacular style. They detached from the ship and plunged back to earth just a few minutes later, lost in the ocean as Armstrong, Aldrin and Collins headed off to their date with destiny.
Using his personal fortune (which as of 2011 stood at more than $18 billion), Bezos put together a team of experts using the most advanced technology - and on March 28 they found the rockets lying in 14,000 ft of water off the coast of Florida.
He now plans to raise at least one of the rockets, which are still owned by NASA, with the hope that it can be displayed at the Smithsonian Institute along with the Apollo 11 Command Module and other important pieces of aviation history.
There's a reason why the event inspired Bezos more than 40 years later - and it's the same reason Apollo 11 memorabilia remains so highly sought-after today.
On July 20, 1969 the world as one held its breath and watched as mankind took a giant leap into the future. It was a moment of wonder, and it changed the world. As Steven Dick says, "a thousand years from now, that step may be considered the crowning achievement of the 20th century."
How you can profit....
During my years in the business I've always advised our clients on the strength of the space memorabilia market - and I think this story illustrates why demand for the finest pieces will always be sky-high.
Here at Paul Fraser Collectibles we're proud to be able to offer our clients a superb range of investment-grade Apollo 11 memorabilia, including:
From a financial point of view, the figures speak for themselves. As the industry's PFC40 Autograph Index shows, the past 11 years have seen the value of a photograph signed by the crew of Apollo 11 rise in value by 375% - with Neil Armstrong's autograph alone increasing by an incredible 981.8% over the same period.
But behind these impressive figures is the passion and desire of collectors to own a true piece of history, and with Apollo 11 memorabilia that passion burns stronger every year.
It's that passion that inspired one of the world's richest men to search at the bottom of the ocean - and it means that an investment in space memorabilia today could see your profits make a giant leap in the future.
Until next week,
Recent and related articles
Top 5 most expensive items of space memorabilia | 28 March 2012
Neil Armstrong autographed Apollo medallion rockets into online sale | 31 January 2012
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