Some interesting John F. Kennedy items in the RR Auction that ends tomorrow. There’s a Harvard sweater, which would warm you nicely this time of year. I’d rather have the Commander-in-Chief bomber jacket, but that will probably be costly. Oh, and there are a lot of assassination-related items. That would include a handwritten letter from Lee Harvey Oswald, and an original window sash from the Texas School Book Depository.

For you autograph fans, how about a Fidel Castro-signed Bay of Pigs map.

Now, Heritage Auctions recently brought in almost $7.5 million with a lot of Neil Armstrong stuff. You can’t say it had something to do with the movie “First Man” being released, as that wasn’t the most well-regarded picture.

The item that sold for the most was Armstrong’s spacecraft ID plate from Apollo 11’s lunar module Eagle. It went for $468,500. Now for me...I stopped bidding when it went over $200,000. At that point it was out of my price range.

The auction also had fragments from the propeller and a section of the wing from the Wright brothers’ Flyer, which was the first heavier-than-air self-powered aircraft. Those went from $275,000 each.

The flight suit Armstrong wore on Gemini 8, the 1966 mission that performed the first docking of two spacecraft in flight (which was also shown in the movie)...brought in $109,375.

Another auction had a John Glenn (the first American to orbit Earth) Navy aviator helmet. That sold for $46,250.

What I found most amusing was the Armstrong children. Mark Armstrong said that he and his brother Rick were sharing this collection with the public “in the hopes of inspiring future generations and reminding us all of what we can accomplish when we all have a shared common vision.”

Uh, really? I think it’s because you guys wanted to make $7 mil. Now, I don’t begrudge them that, but don’t lie about it. If you want to “inspire” why not donate that to the Boy Scouts or some NASA museum? And...I heard one radio station saying that they also had Armstrong’s Playboy collection up for sale. I’m sure that will inspire many boys in the future.

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Tags: Gemini 8, John F. Kennedy, John Glenn, Lee Harvey Oswald, Neil Armstrong, Playboy

Comment by Joe W. on November 8, 2018 at 8:08am

I agree, money grab. I would prefer these items to have stayed together. Think of the possibilities of a traveling museum. Millions more could be inspired. And, money could could be made from that as well. Win win situation.

Except for the Playboys! Of course, I would only be interested in those due to the quality articles!!

Comment by Josh Board on November 8, 2018 at 8:16am

Hhahahahahaha. Well played, Joe. But...all joking aside, I have NO PROBLEM with the family making money off selling his stuff. None at all. BUT...you DO NOT get to say you're doing it for some kind of noble reasons, or to "share it with fans that want to experience it" or whatever other cliche they want to spew. No. You want to make money. The honest answer would've been, "Well...this stuff was just sitting in closets and in the basement, and knowing we could make millions selling them...we figured, why not?"

Comment by Steve Zarelli on November 8, 2018 at 11:59am

According to some reports, the Armstrong family already donated the "A" material to museums. What Heritage got was the leftovers.

There were many nice items offered that typically command high demand, e.g., Robbins medallions, signed postal covers, signed photos, etc. However, much of the material was common and routine with no historical value... for example, pamphlets, buttons, magazines, etc. In all seriousness, stuff that would not sell for $5 at a flea market was selling for hundreds or thousands of dollars simply because it sat in Armstrong's basement for the past 50+ years and Heritage put it in a fancy holder.

It was the craziest, most overblown bidding I have ever seen. 

Comment by Josh Board on November 8, 2018 at 2:25pm

That's interesting. Thanks for that info Steve.

Comment by BG Meadows 3 hours ago

I was blown away by the final figure on JFK's Harvard sweater. I'm surprised it survived the years. 

Comment by BG Meadows 3 hours ago

Speaking of families making money off their celebrity kinfolks. Robert Oswald, Lee's brother, has been selling his stuff for years. Recently, RR Auction featured Lee's crib. 

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