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Auction House Madness

posted by Evelina

The hammer may have gone down on a pair of teeth owned by the one and only Sir Winston Churchill which sold for an impressive £15,200 at an auction house in Norfolk but have a look at some of the closed auction on MadBid that shows online auction madness at its best. 


It goes to show that super fans are fully prepared to pay to get their hands on a range of memorabilia by their idols and it does not matter how weird they are.  One fan bought a pair of false teeth, whereas another purchased a half-smoked cigar.  If you thought that was weird, bizarrely there was a recorded auction for many celebrity chest X-Rays and the list goes on.


In recent years a strange item to go under the auction hammer was the ashes of the Coronation Street cat, Frisky.  If you don’t remember Frisky, he was the cat that appeared walking across the house walls on the opening sequence of over 1,000 episodes of this popular soap.  A wooden casket containing the famous cat’s ashes reached a massive £844 at an auction house in Gloucestershire where there was shock in the room as furious bidding went ahead by lots of fans of Coronation Street.  This lot which was hosted by Dominic Winter Book Auctions also included postcards of Frisky the cat, a cremation certificate, and pictures of him with other Coronation Street soap stars.


This auction house is certainly no stranger to selling weird and wonderful items as other lots including a tooth that was believed to have belonged to Napoleon, a handkerchief that had been dipped into the blood of Charles I after he was beheaded in the year 1649 and even a piece of moustache hair that belonged to the author of Sherlock Holmes, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.


But it is worth bearing in mind that although auction houses see a lot coming through their door with many forming part of a larger collection they will only put something up for auction if there is a story behind the item and more importantly that it is believable.  The auction house in Gloucestershire has received lots of hair by Napoleon.


Putting our attention now towards another auction house based in Shropshire, in the year 2003 a piece of wallpaper from the bedroom where Napoleon slept while he was in prison was sold for £1,250.  It makes you wonder what the new owner of the tiny scrap of wallpaper plans to do with it.


In addition to this the same auction house was said to have had a lot containing tools that were used in the post-mortem examination of the King of Pop, Elvis Presley.  Now we think you will agree this is certainly very weird and a bit morbid.  Other items sold included a piece of Napoleon’s coffin.


Mullocks in Shropshire also stated that they have a lot of people that are huge fans of historical people such as Napoleon, Churchill and Hitler.  When people have a huge obsession with these historical people like this they will inevitably start collecting any piece of memorabilia that is associated with them.  Followings will start with standard items such as letters that have been written by them, unique paintings of their idols and even newspaper clippings and then as the collection gets bigger and bigger the style of collection changes as more exotic items are wanted.


Lots of auction houses including Mullocks have to turn away a lot of items because they simply find it too difficult to authenticate.  With a lot of this exotic stuff sometimes a story has to be believed or not.  Many times people who bring these items to auction to sell want to believe the story and how they would have hoped their legends to have behaved.


But it is not just weird items from historical legends that are brought to the auction place, celebrity memorabilia is huge and some of this as we have already seen is very weird too.


We have already mentioned that the tools that were used to embalm Elvis Presley were auctioned and the box containing ashes of Frisky the cat, but did you know that the rubber gloves and a toe tag from the auction of Elvis Presley was removed from the lot because the auction house feared that these may be sterilised and used again, plus there was other concerns regarding the authenticity of these items?


These are only a small collection of weird and wonderful items for auction and we are sure there will be lots more in the future.



Related to this Article
–  MadBid vs eBid, here is our summary of the different types of online auctions

–  How is MadBid different to Ebay, we look at 6 feature differences

–  Still wondering how MadBid works? Read the MadBid reviews and be in the know

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