At Steve Cyrkin's invitation, I'd like to call your attention to a signature study I've posted on my blog, Charlton Heston signature study by Steve Zarelli.

I believe I have identified the "tell" in Charlton Heston secretarial signatures, and if I am correct, the news is not good for most collectors. It appears that most  Heston signed photos are secretarially signed.


Here is a synopsis:

The Theory
Photographs and other memorabilia sent to Mr. Heston's office were signed by a secretary. However, Mr. Heston did authentically sign books through-the-mail.  

Real vs. Secretary
In authentic signatures, the R in "Charlton" is distinctly a lowercase "r" and less than half the height of the L. The first four letters are clearly "Char."

In secretarial signatures, the R looks much more like a lowercase "l" and is about the same height as the L. So, the first four letters appear to be "Chall."

I have attached two images to give you a small sampling.  

For more details and images, please visit my blog at the link below.

I'd love to hear your feedback and thoughts on this. I fully anticipate some resistance to the theory, because denial is always the first step. In fact, I would love to be proved wrong, because that would mean I wasn't sitting on a bunch of secretary signed photos!

By way of introduction, I have been collecting since the early 90s and I am the UACC Ethics Director.

I look forward to the discussion.

The Collecting Obsession


Steve Zarelli


Tags: Charlton, Forgery, Heston, Secretary, authenticating, autograph, secretarial

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Just like Jackie Gleason. About 50% of what they show at PSA Facts are secretarials or forgeries of secretarials. :( And it is now old information...

Wanted to share another Heston/Omega Man piece I picked up from framer the other day. This one also has a Heston book cut and 5 indexes sized down of the other 5 main cast members, along with headshots I printed. I love this movie and other Heston old films and have met the legend a handful of times way back. This study helped when I first read thru it some years back (I had previously bought a few 3x5’s after he passed for the few photos I had left, but have since replaced those w/book cuts in a few smaller framed pieces I may offer on here if anyone is interested. So here is my second framed piece from The Omega Man! 

That looks fantastic. Really nice job. 


I recently picked up a dated album page Heston autograph (1952) and after getting matts cut, assembled this Soylent Green piece in 14x11 frame.  Found a patch (over the lower right printed card) that fit my plans well.  It's getting rather obvious to my other friends that I'm maybe into Heston too much haha.  I just love his 70's sci-fi movies.  Probably one more 11x14 to do to fill the wall space in.  Either Planet/Apes or one last Omega Man.

That’s an awesome piece! You can never have too much Heston! ;)

Thanks Greg!  Agree with ya.  Probably the biggest Hollywood figure to me that I’d met  on different occasions in Dallas.  I even bought back on the bay my Bible signed book w/ event stuff, proof pic, and my “worthless” little COA from a relative of the buyer, sold 20 years ago.  Was surprised to see it and glad to have it back!

It is stuff like this that becomes a problem after authenticated and those companies have no desire to keep their data accurate. Current asking price for this is over $600. Saw one from another set with a $300 plus price.

In all fairness, this is "Beckett Grading Services," which "graded" the card. Not the same as Beckett Authentication Services, who I would hope would not pass this. It's possible this pre-dates the secretary study.

That said, the potential for confusion between the grading and authentication divisions is understandable. The same thing happens with PSA.

I picked this one up years ago, hard to believe it has been nearly 20 years since it's release.

Beckett should be ashamed of this. When the top authenticator for the company can't even get the basic time period right of a ring worn wrestling item (Macho Man Randy Savage/Pawn Stars) how can you trust them authenticating autographs?

Unfortunately the slab companies offer so many services that it becomes confusing to collectors who do not normally deal with them.

Came across this one where I guess Beckett just slabs items without looking at them. I informed the seller they were pushing David Carradine and not Don Cheadle........they didn't care. Still up for sale as Cheadle.

I get a headache just looking at their ridiculous tiered price lists. I guess it's a good thing though, it has kept me from ever submitting anything. ;-)



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