Much less expensive in the military conquest line, but very appealing in a different, almost comic sort of way was a film contract signed by the Mexican revolutionary, General ‘Pancho’ Villa, that sold at $5000 (£3790).
Needing money to bolster his revolutionary aims, Villa agreed in a document signed in El Paso, Texas, in January 1914, that for $10 plus 20% on all net returns he would grant the Mutual Film Corporation exclusive rights to film his troops’ operations and battles. Villa also offered protection for the film crew.
A silent film, The Life of General Villa, starring the man himself, was duly premiered in May of the same year, but today only fragments survive.
In 2003, Antonio Banderas starred in a $30m, HBO made-for-television film that told the story of that silent film. It was called And Starring Pancho Villa as Himself.
Sold for $13,000 (£9850) in the Heritage sale was a power of attorney document signed by Lizzie Borden just eight days after the notorious murders of her father and stepmother of which she stood accused (see antiquestradegazette.com for more).