Blood taken from Ronald Reagan after the failed 1981 assassination attempt against him has gone on sale via an online auction site.
The glass vial, which contains dried blood residue from the former president, went on sale on the Guernsey-based PFC auction site with a minimum bid price of £1,500. At the time of publication, the bid stood at around £3,000.
The 5-inch vial comes with a printed, white label that reads:
REAGAN RONALD 940029 THOR / 610892572 AARON PRESIDENTIAL / SUITE 3/30/81 M 2/02/11 JAP
According to the auction website, “940029 was Reagan’s patient ID. AARON refers to Benjamin L. Aaron who was Chief of Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgery at George Washington University Hospital where Reagan was in the Presidential Suite. THOR refers to thoracic. Reagan was admitted on March 30 1981 and M refers to male.”
Reagan’s date of birth is incorrectly stated as “2/02/11”. His actual date of birth is 6 February 1911. A second document detailing the tests carried out on the blood is also included.
Reagan was shot on 30 March 1981 after speaking to union officials at the Washington Hilton Hotel. His attacker, John Hinckley Jr, said he shot the president in an effort to impress actress Jodie Foster. Hinckley was found not guilty by virtue of insanity. He has spent the past 31 years in federal institutions.
Articles of providence are included, which state that the seller came by the blood by way of his mother, who worked in the laboratory contacted by the hospital after the shooting. Once the testing was completed, the lab worker asked if she could keep the vial.
The seller, who is not named, says he has contacted the National Library and the National archives but neither were interested in buying the blood.
He was asked if he would like to donate the vial to the Reagan family, but as a “fan of Reaganomics” the seller felt that the former Commander in Chief would rather see it sold than donated.
Kylie Whitehead of PFC Auctions, told the Huffington Post UK: "Political memorabilia is one of the fastest growing areas of collecting. This is certainly an unusual piece, and that ticks the boxes for many collectors."
The blood and lab sheet has been with the seller's family since 1981