Apple 1 Computer Sold by Steve Jobs for Sale at Christie’s

Apple-1 Personal Computer sold by Steve Jobs and other documents to be auctioned. Image courtesy of the Christie's Images Ltd

Apple-1 Personal Computer sold by Steve Jobs and other documents  on apple to be auctioned. Image courtesy of the Christie’s Images Ltd

ART NEWS: Apple -1 Personal Computer sold by Steve Jobs to Charles Ricketts out of his parents’ garage in Los Altos expected to bring $400,000 – 600,000 at Christie’s Auction

NEW YORK – With eye-popping designs and amazing technology, Apple has come to dominate the telecommunication world. From iPhone, iPad, Mac notebooks and desktop computers, Apple designs have shown that there is always setting to look forward to when it comes to sleek communication gadgets. As expected, whenever there is an Apple launch, the focus is always on the new. Many Apple product lovers often forget that there was a time when Apple product designs were not so lustrous. An apt reminder of that past will come into focus   on December 11 when Christie’s auction house offers an American cultural icon, ‘The Ricketts’ Apple-1 Personal Computer, as part of the auction house’s inaugural Exceptional Sale in New York at the Rockefeller Center. ‘The Ricketts’ Apple-1 Personal Computer was named after its first owner Charles Ricketts, and it is the only known surviving Apple-1 documented to have been sold directly by Steve Jobs to an individual from his parents’ garage. ‘The Ricketts’ is estimated at $400,000 – 600,000, the highest estimate yet for an original Apple-1 offered at auction.

‘The Ricketts’ has an amazing provenance that goes back more than three decades. Ricketts who bought the Apple-1 from Jobs in Los Altos, held it for 23 years until it was acquired by Bruce Waldack, a freshly minted entrepreneur who’d just sold his company DigitalNation. The Ricketts Apple-1 was acquired soon after by the American collector, Bob Luther, when it was auctioned at a sheriff’s sale of Waldack’s property at a self-storage facility in Virginia in 2004.

In good working condition, the Ricketts Apple-1 is fully operational. It was serviced and started by Apple-1 expert Corey Cohen in October 2014. Mr. Cohen ran the standard original software program, Microsoft BASIC, and also an original Apple-1 Star Trek game in order to test the machine.

Included with the Ricketts Apple-1 sale is the cancelled check from the original garage purchase on July 27, 1976 made out to Apple Computer by Charles Ricketts for $600, which Ricketts later labeled as “Purchased July 1976 from Steve Jobs in his parents’ garage in Los Altos.” A second cancelled check for $193 from August 5, 1976 is labeled “Software NA Programmed by Steve Jobs August 1976.” The two checks were important evidence for the City of Los Altos to designate the Jobs family home at 2066 Crist Drive as a Historic Resource, eligible for listing on the National Register of Historic Places. Copies of the checks can be found in the company’s archives at Stanford University Libraries.

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The Ron Wayne Apple Archive will also be put on sale during the auction. Estimated at $30,000-50,000, the apple Archive shows Mr. Wayne’s involvement with Apple. Ron Wayne co-founded Apple Computer, together with Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak in 1976. Wayne was an integral member of the Apple foundation. Although he left the partnership 11 days after the company was formed, he remained a consultant to the enterprise and left a significant mark on the company having drafted fundamental documents and Apple’s first logo.

The Ron Wayne Apple Archive which comes directly from Ron Wayne includes the original working proofs of the Apple-1 Operation Manual, with his original company logo. Believed to be the oldest copy of an Apple logo in existence, this proof page of the logo is generating great excitement among everything Apple collectors. Wayne possessed and retained these proof copies because he laid out the entire design and contents of the Manual, in partnership with Steve Jobs. Also included in the auction are design renderings, bluelines, sketches and diagrams for a proposed Apple II personal computer cabinet.

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