Paul Fraser Collectibles, a memorabilia website has done a very interesting study to find out the most expensive autograph in the world. The result might surprise many as the study revealed that the autograph of James Dean topped the list as collectors were willing to pay the most for the star’s autograph. The study did not factor in the importance or fame of the celebrity but prepared the top ten list based exclusively on the actual amounts people paid for their autographs. James Dean died at the age of 24 which meant that there were very few of his autographs in existence when he died. It is the scarcity of his autographs that has pushed the value of his autograph to £18,000.
Most of the names that have made it to the top ten list of most valuable autographs are of deceased celebrities simply because fresh supplies of their signatures are not possible. If the demand goes up for the limited supply of these autographs then their value rises correspondingly. Bruce Lee, who occupies the second spot in the list, also died early at the peak of his career and popularity. The value of his autograph has risen by more than 500% in the last four years to touch £11,000. Next on the list at number three is Admiral Lord Nelson whose signature is valued at £10,500.
The other names in the list of ten most expensive autographs are a mix of celebrities from different fields including Princess Diana, Albert Einstein, Neil Armstrong, JFK, Winston Churchill and John Lennon. At number ten is Marilyn Monroe whose autograph is presently worth £6,950. Fidel Castro’s autograph is the most expensive amongst the living celebrities as getting his fresh signature is practically impossible. His signatures in the market fetch as much as £3,750. Sir Paul McCartney at number two is a surprise because he has given a huge number of autographs over the decade and continues to do so. The study pointed out that they had not considered the signature of William Shakespeare whose six signatures are known to exist. All his autographs are owned by different museums and are unlikely to come to the market.