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  • 10 of the best pieces I've sold this year
  • Post author
    Will Davison
  • Albert EinsteinApocalypse NowApollo 11AutographCharles LindberghJFKJimi HendrixJK RowlingMarlon BrandoMemorabiliaStephen HawkingYuri Gagarin

10 of the best pieces I've sold this year

We’ve reached the end of another vintage year. 

The market has thrown up some fascinating trends and huge records, as well as new perspectives on some old favourites. 

I'm looking back on 10 of the best pieces I’ve sold in the last 12 months.

Let’s begin with…

10. Jimi Hendrix 
 
This blue and red suede vest once belonged to 1960s counterculture superstar Jimi Hendrix.
Jimi Hendrix vest

Hendrix's vest is decorated with long tassels  

It's from the collection of Tom Hulett, Hendrix’s former tour manager.

Hulett received it as a gift from Hendrix’s father Al.

It’s an exceptional item that encapsulates Jimi Hendrix’s wild creativity.

It sold for £8,950 ($12,151) in June.

Looking for something similar? Click here.

9. JFK

The Kennedy family gifted this photograph to their nanny, Maud Shaw.

JFK signed photo

This charming card shows a little seen side to the Kennedy family  

JFK, Jacqueline and their two children, Caroline and John Kennedy Jr, have all signed.

It shows JFK and the children petting Macaroni - the Shetland pony Caroline received as a gift from former president Lyndon B Johnson.

It's a candid photograph of a private moment in what was, for all the family, a very public life.

It went for £17,500 in March.

8. JK Rowling

There are few contemporary writers as influential as JK Rowling.

Her Harry Potter series was a global phenomenon.

JK Rowling horoscope
Rowling drew the cover for the horoscope herself 
 
Rowling wrote this horoscope for the son of a friend in 1994, three years before she became internationally famous.
 
Inside you’ll find 12 pages of text and charts analysing Jack David Buchanan’s stars.
 
It’s an intriguing piece that dovetails beautifully with Rowling’s most famous creation.
 
Her interest in astrology formed the foundation for the Harry Potter books. Each character's star sign offers clues into their nature.
It sold for £17,500 in March.
You can own another of these horoscopes today.
 
7. Apollo 11
 
2019 was the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 Moon landing.
 
A monumental event.
Apollo 11 Stamps

This looks to be a totally unique piece of Apollo 11 memorabilia  

And I was fortunate to source something truly special for the occasion.

This pristine block of 32 1969 10c Apollo 11 Moon Landing stamps bear signatures from Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins.

As far as I’m aware, this piece is entirely unique.

The crew carried the original die for these stamps with them to the Moon. This piece achieved £12,000 ($16,292).

6. Yuri Gagarin

The way we talk about the Space Race is changing.

 Yuri Gagarin autograph

Yuri Gagarin's achievement made him a superstar, both in the USSR and abroad

And I’ve tracked rising demand for Soviet cosmonauts over the past couple of years. Historically demand was reserved for American astronauts.

Yuri Gagarin, the first man in space, is one of the most sought-after Soviet signers.
 
In July, I sold an attractive postcard signed by Gagarin for £995 ($1,350)
 
It’s an excellent piece with bags of charm and strong potential for future growth.
 
5. Marlon Brando 
 
Do you remember watching Apocalypse Now for the first time?
 
I certainly do.
Marlon Brando autograph

Marlon Brando commits to appearing in Apocalypse Now  

The atmosphere in the cinema was electric. It’s one of a handful of movies to have had a lasting impact on me.

In August, a buyer paid £4,950 ($6,720) for a 1976 letter Marlon Brando sent to director Francis Ford Coppola’s lawyers agreeing to star as Colonel Kurtz.

Brando was notoriously difficult on the set. Among the many things that wound Coppola up was Brando's insistence on improvising. Eventually, Coppola threw up his hands and agreed to let him do whatever he wanted. 

This decision, however much it rankled at the time, proved a masterstroke.

4. Stephen Hawking 

Stephen Hawking left us last year.

In the aftermath of his death there was an outpouring of affection. We also saw rising demand for his autograph.

Stephen Hawking autograph

One of Hawking's carers signs below the thumbprint to confirm its authenticity

Due to the progression of MS, Hawking was unable to write by hand from the late 1970s onward. This was around the time he became internationally famous.

Consequently, his written autograph is so rare as to be almost unobtainable. But Hawking did give autographs. His carers would dip his thumb in ink and press it onto the page.

This year I sold a copy of Hawking’s seminal A Brief History of Time bearing one of these distinctive signatures for £2,568 ($3,486).

You can own another here.

3. Charles Lindbergh

Charles Lindbergh was the biggest hero of his age.

Charles Lindbergh autograph

Lindbergh signed autographs on the world tour that followed his historic flight 

When he stepped out of his cockpit in Paris in 1927, he was met by an adoring crowd.

And those crowds got bigger and bigger over time.

Lindbergh’s signature is a real rarity and signed photos are particularly in demand.

This signed photo, which recently sold for £9,500 ($12,898), is easily the best I’ve handled.

2. My Prestige Collectibles Auction

This year I held my first auction in several years.

There were autographs from Marilyn Monroe, Louis Armstrong and the Beatles.

Marilyn Monroe mirror

Marilyn Monroe can be seen with this mirror in a photo taken at a 1952 awards ceremony 

A set of original Woodstock tapes.

Some ultra rare stamps.

It was a big success.

Among the highlights was an England Elizabeth I (1558-1603) Gold Pound of Twenty Shillings which realised £8,000 ($10,861).

The Marilyn Monroe-owned mirror in the photo above sold for £1,000. 

I’m hosting the next one in March. 

Please get in touch at info@paulfrasercollectibles.com if you have something you’d like to consign.

1. Albert Einstein 

Albert Einstein’s signature is a classic rarity.

Most often it comes in the form of letters.

Albert Einstein autograph

Einstein signed this portrait of himself in 1948  

But the great man wasn’t averse to signing portraits.

One of my favourite sales was for a signed pencil portrait of Einstein by Danish artist Carl Werner Skogholm.
 
It shows Einstein gazing pensively into the middle distance.
 
An exceptional likeness.
 
And the autograph that accompanies it is as good as it gets. This piece sold for £2,950 ($4,005). 
 
Thanks for all your support over the past year.
 

I look forward to catching up with you in January.

And if you're looking to pick up some high quality collectibles over the new year...

Click here

Thanks for reading,
Paul Fraser.
 

PS. A Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from all at Paul Fraser Collectibles. 

  • Post author
    Will Davison
  • Albert EinsteinApocalypse NowApollo 11AutographCharles LindberghJFKJimi HendrixJK RowlingMarlon BrandoMemorabiliaStephen HawkingYuri Gagarin