Stalin, Castro and Kennedy could be the new Superpowers of autographs

Tomorrow, July 13, at 5:00pm Pacific time, auctioneers Nate D. Sanders will be closing a fascinating internet sale of autographs and signed memorabilia.

Among the 594 lots on sale will be a number of unique collectibles that are set to attract fans of autographs and political history alike.

Ho Chi Minh's autograph

The collection offers a unique first for collectors, with not one but three different communist leaders' autographs up for sale

Firstly: a signed photograph of Ho Chi Minh, leader of the Communist North Vietnamese who fought the United States using the infamous guerrilla army of the Vietcong.

The autograph is presented on a Black and white photo, showing Ho Chi Minh climbing down the outer staircase of an airplane (pictured left).

Measuring 7'' x 9'', the photograph comes with an estimated price of $500.

However, given the rarity of such an autograph, this collectible has the potential to bring a much higher amount.

Alternatively, the online auction also boasts the autograph of former Cuban leader Fidel Castro. The document is a 1947 pre revolution New Years card signed by Castro himself.

The letter reads, in Spanish:

''How are you Chino? I'm here in the East where it's relatively calm, practicing pistol shooting. I would like very much for you to write. With many memories of our times together. Warm regards, Fidel.''

Measuring 5.5'' x 3.5'', the 1946 light tan card, also reads on the front: ''Fidel Castro wishes you and your distinguished family a happy Easter and a prosperous new year,'' and carries an estimated price of $500. What's more, the value of this autograph could soon increase given Castro's present health.

Yet, while Castro and Ho Chi Minh represent rare and unique autographs to both collectors and historians, they are both dwarfed in comparison to the signature of the infamous Joseph Stalin.

Tomorrow's auction will offer collectors the chance to buy an incredibly rare Joseph Stalin autographed letter. Dated September 8, 1935, Stalin writes to his then nine-year-old daughter Svetlana Alliluyeva:

''…I got your letter. Thank you for not forgetting about your Daddy. How are your secretaries doing? Please, find some time to write me about them. I'm doing fine, just missing you. I kiss you very much…I. Stalin''.

Svetlana had already lost her mother - a woman known to have suffered physical abuse by Stalin, to suicide.  In 1967, Svetlana caused a storm by defecting to the United States and denouncing Stalin's regime.

Stalin's hand written
letter to his daughter

This single page, grease pencil written letter carries an estimate of $500, although it may exceed these expectations given the context.

However, while these three lots represent unique investment opportunities for collectors of both autographs and historical documentation, the top lots of tomorrow's auction cover an altogether different theme...

The first is a ghostly reminder of one of the darkest days in American history - offering collectors the chance to bid for a section of the seat upon which President John F Kennedy sat as Lee Harvey Oswald opened fire on him, ending his life.

Measuring 3" x 3" and coming with a letter of provenance from the White House Technical Service Representative, this is truly a one-of-a-kind piece of memorabilia.

The dark blue leather seat section, when placed under black light, shows spots of blood which undoubtedly would have belonged to the president.

The piece comes from the private collection of then White House Technical Service Representative, F Vaughn Ferguson. In the letter of provenance that accompanies the section, Ferguson explains:

''[after the return of the car to Washington]...FBI agents had ripped the leather seats. They told me they had to do it to find the bullet particles from the shooting...Ferguson said he took a little of the memorabilia with him...'I still have some of the leather from the seats' he said...''

The piece carries an estimated price of $1,000 and is sure to be the highlight of the autograph and signed document sale. John F Kennedy played a significant role in the cold war, with many conspiracy theorists pointing to this as a potential reason for his assassination.

The truth may never be known, but memorabilia related to the life and times of one of America's most popular presidents remains greatly sought after.

Kennedy's Handwritten note on Foreign Policy

Meanwhile, Paul Fraser Collectibles currently has two autographed John F Kennedy documents which relate to his dealings in foreign policy.

The first, is a signed Senate letter in which Kennedy begins to outline why he wishes to adopt a policy of "providing economic assistance to the people of Poland."  The second is note written in pencil on Yellow legal paper, which concerns foreign affairs:

"1. Merchant Marine defence - Waltham How much to put it right  / 2. Press conference in Germany Italy Burode to Hearst? / Atwood Communist return to Dominican R[epublic] Should we contact Bettencourt Carnegie Report".

These documents are also available to purchase now and represent a unique investment for memorabilia enthusiasts of all kinds, with huge potential for the future. For now, tomorrow's live auction also promises to be one to remember.


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