A two-volume signed set of Adolf Hitler's "Mein Kampf," one of the most reviled screeds in modern history, sold for more than $60,000 in an online auction Thursday — more than twice what the books had been expected to fetch.
Eleven people bid on the books, which were published in 1925 and 1926, with the winning bid coming in at $64,850, including the buyer's premium, said Nate Sanders, owner of Nate D. Sanders Auctions in Los Angeles. Before the auction, Sanders estimated that they would sell for $20,000 to $25,000.
A leather jacket owned by Albert Speer, Hitlers armaments minister, also sold Thursday for $10,068, said Sanders, who said he knew he would catch a lot of flack for putting the Hitler set up for bid.
"It is a piece of history. It is a very rare item," Sanders said.
Hitler was arrested and jailed for the attempt to seize power. He dictated "Mein Kampf," two volumes of autobiography and anti-Semitic manifesto, to Rudolf Hess while behind bars to raise money for his criminal defense.
FREDERIC J. BROWN / AFP - Getty Images
One of two rare copies of "Mein Kampf" signed by the young Nazi leader Adolf Hitler and up for auction Thursday.
Both volumes' fly-leaves feature Hitler's signature.
Sanders said volumes of "Mein Kampf" from the 1930s are common, but a copy signed by the author is rare.
Selling Nazi memorabilia is prohibited in many European countries that saw the horrors of World War II.
— M. Alex Johnson with The Associated Press
First published February 27 2014, 9:44 AM