Earlier this week I reported that a vial purported to contain the blood residue of former U.S. President Ronald Reagan was being auctioned off by Channel Islands online auction house PFC Auctions. The key word in that sentence is "was" ... as today news has broke that the auction has been cancelled.
PFC Auctions issued a statement on the matter:
"PFC Auctions announces that it made contact yesterday evening with The Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation regarding the Auctioning of the Ronald Reagan laboratory blood vial. What has not been widely reported is that the auction consignor purchased the item at a public auction in the USA in February 2012 for $3,550. Bidding on the PFC Auctions website currently stands at $30,086, and we have negotiated with the consignor to arrange for the item to be withdrawn from the auction and donated to the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation, a considerable financial gesture from the consignor. The consignor, who wishes to remain anonymous has stated: "I realised what an important artefact this was when bidding in the US auction. I am a serious collector of Presidential memorabilia, and have donated to Museums before, and thought from the provenance supplied at the auction where I purchased, that the Reagan Foundation had no interest in the item. I have dealt with the team at PFC Auctions for over 10 years so they were naturally my first choice when I chose to re-auction the item. The publicity generated by PFC Auctions for their current Auction has clearly highlighted the importance of this historical artefact and I would personally be delighted to see this important artefact put on public display by the Foundation. This now concludes matters to the benefit of The Ronald Reagan Foundation, and protects the legacy of Ronald Reagan as a President of the United States."
John Heubusch, the Executive Director for the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation said "We are very pleased with this outcome and wish to thank the consignor and PFC Auctions for their assistance in this matter. While we contend that the removal of the vial from the hospital laboratory and the US auction sale in February 2012 were not legal acts in our opinion, we are grateful to the current custodian of the vial for this generous donation to the Foundation Ensuring President Reagan's blood remains out of public hands."
A representative from PFC Auctions tells Seattle Weekly via email: "It is worth noting the gent who consigned with us bought the item from a public auction house in the USA in February 2012. The letter of provenance that accompanies the item was provided by the original vendor at the February 2012 auction."
The letter of provenance the PFC Auctions representative is referring to was included in its entirety in our original post.
While this development may come as good news to the Reagan Presidential Foundation, it really throws a kink in my birthday wish list.