The only surviving Apple-1 documented as being sold by Steve Jobs will go under the hammer at Christie’s in December when it is anticipated to fetch up to $600,000 (A$ 690,000).
The so-called Ricketts Apple-1 Personal Computer, named after its original owner Charles Ricketts and being sold on December 11, is documented as having been sold directly by 21 year old Jobs, to an individual from the Jobs' Los Altos, California family home garage for $600.
The computer is being sold by Robert Luther, a Virginia collector who bought it in 2004 at a police auction of storage locker goods without knowing all the details of its history.
"I knew it had been sold from the garage of Steve Jobs in July of 1976, because I had the buyer's canceled check," Luther wrote on a kickstarter page soliciting funding for a book on the machine's history.
"My computer had been purchased directly from Jobs, and based on the buyers address on the check, he lived four miles from Jobs."
An Apple-1 expert serviced and started the computer, running the standard original software program, Microsoft BASIC, and an original Apple-1 Star Trek game to test it out, Christie's said.
The computer will be sold with the canceled check from the original garage purchase on July 27, 1976 made out to Apple Computer by Charles Ricketts for $600, which Ricketts later labeled as "Purchased July 1976 from Steve Jobs in his parents’ garage in Los Altos".
A second canceled check for $193 from Aug. 5, 1976 is labeled “Software NA Programmed by Steve Jobs August 1976.” The checks were used as evidence for the city of Los Altos to designate the Jobs family home on Crist Drive for eligibility for listing on the National Register of Historic Places.
Last month, the Henry Ford organization paid 1 million at auction for one of the few remaining Apple-1 computers, which was more than twice the pre-sale estimate.
Fewer than 50 original Apple-1s are believed to be in existence of the few hundred originally produced.