A cigar half-smoked by Winston Churchill achieved a record $12,262 in a sale of memorabilia at RR Auction yesterday.
It more than doubled the previous record for a Churchill cigar, set at £4,500 ($5,966), for a specimen from 1941 in 2010.
Churchill is pictured smoking this very cigar
Churchill puffed on the cigar before getting on a plane at Le Bourget airport in Paris on May 11, 1947.
It’s a La Corona, his favoured brand, and features his name printed on the band. He’d often give these out as gifts.
The moment was captured by a Corporal William Turner. A signed photo accompanying the cigar shows Churchill surrounded by a crowd of well wishers.
Turner explains in the margin: “He is surrounded by French ex-servicemen with whom he had been chatting.
“He stubbed out his cigar in an ashtray when he came aboard, and I took the remains into protective custody."
Turner’s family sold the cigar for just £1,700 ($2,255) at Hall’s in April this year.
The exceptional provenance of the piece explains its sparkling result in this latest sale. While Churchill cigars aren’t especially rare at auction, this is the first we’ve seen that comes with a photograph of him smoking it.
Take a look at this remarkable piece of signed Churchill memorabilia we’re offering.
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