Five odd items that sold for high prices at auctions

By Daniel Uria  |  Jan. 8, 2016 at 1:01 PM
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One of the "Big Three" of the rarest U.S. coins, an 1895-S Barber U.S. dime, sold for $2 million at a Tampa coin auction. The coin represents one of the latest examples of extravagant auction purchases to make the news. We've compiled some of the strangest and most pricey auction purchases.

$860,000: World's largest cat painting

The 75-inch-by-102-inch painting My Wife's Lovers by Austrian artist Carl Kahler, which features 42 cats sold for $826,000 in an auction at Sotheby's in New York.

The work, believed to be the world's largest cat painting was inspired by Khaler's visit to art collector Kate Johnson's "cat ranch" where she reportedly kept as many as 350 cats.

$23,000: Titanic's last surviving cracker
Titanic cracker Photo courtesy of Henry Aldridge & Son

Labeled the "world's most valuable biscuit" a Spillers and Bakers Pilot cracker, which originated from a survival kit on a Titanic lifeboat sold to a Greek collector for $23,000 at a British auction.

The cracker was saved from the crash by Carpathia passenger James Fenwick, as the ship picked up Titanic survivors.

$20,000: Nude portrait of Canadian Prime Minister
Stephen Harper portrait Photo by Margaret Sutherland/

Vancouver man Frederick Ghahramani purchased a nude portrait of former Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper for 20,000 on Canadian classifieds site Kijiji.

The portrait entitled Emperor Haute Couture Margaret Sutherland was originally purchased by public servant Danielle Potvin for $5,750 in 2012.

She planned to use the funds from the auction towards a $40,000 home renovation project.

$12,977: Toronto Mayor Rob Ford's "crack confession" tie

The NFL necktie worn by former Toronto Mayor Rob Ford when he confessed to smoking crack cocaine fetched $12,997 in an eBay auction.

The tie, which received 111 bids, was one of several pieces of memorabilia sold by Ford on eBay.

Each item was accompanied by a signed Certificate Authenticity from Ford.

$10,500: Three of Steve Jobs' business cards
Steve Jobs business cardsPhoto by The Marin School/ CEO Tim Knowles purchased three of Steve Jobs' business cards for $10,500 from a private high school auction in California.

The business cards, which were donated by a family who used to cater for Jobs, represent monumental points in his career marking his time at NeXt, Pixar and Apple.

"if there was ever a business card to have in your rolodex -- it would be Steve's -- we wouldn't be doing what we are doing right now if it wasn't for him!" Knowles said.

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