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Lot # 1170 (of 1336)   < Previous Lot | Next Lot >

1910 Charles Rolls Cut Signature - Cofounder of Rolls-Royce

Starting Bid - $500, Sold For - $600

Rare signature example of Charles Rolls (1877-1910), English automotive manufacturer, aviator, and cofounder of the Rolls-Royce Company. The signature, "Chas. S. Rolls," is boldly scripted in black fountain pen (grading "10") and includes the date, "9 June 1910," directly below. This is the first Charles Rolls signature example we have ever handled and we have only seen a few other examples at auction over the past twenty years. The rarity of his signature today is due to his tragic death in a plane crash on July 12, 1910, at the age of thirty-two. Rolls was born into a wealthy British family and attended Cambridge University, where he earned a degree in engineering. With a love for speed and adventure, he became a racing cyclist until a new invention, the automobile, caught his fancy. It was through his love of auto racing that he met F. H. Royce, a manufacturer of high-end automobiles. The pair hit it off and formed the Rolls-Royce company. Rolls later took up aviation and became the first person to fly nonstop across the English Channel. Even in dying he was famous. On July 12, 1910, he became Britain's first air fatality when the plane he was flying crashed at Hengistbury Airfield. The small card (2.75 x 1.5 inches) is in apparent Near Mint condition and has been matted together with an illustrated likeness of Rolls to total dimensions of 7.5 x 12.25 inches. LOA from James Spence/JSA.  Reserve $500. Estimate (open). SOLD FOR $600

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