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Lot #3036
Steve Jobs Signed Check

Rare Apple Computer check signed by Steve Jobs in 1976—the year of the company's founding

Estimate: $25000+
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Rare Apple Computer check signed by Steve Jobs in 1976—the year of the company's founding

Exceptional Apple Computer Company check, 6 x 3, filled out in type and signed by Jobs, "Steven Jobs," payable to Tektronix, Inc. for $9.18, July 23, 1976. Headed "Apple Computer Company," the check uses Apple's first official address at "770 Welch Rd., Ste. 154, Palo Alto"—the location of an answering service and mail drop that they used while still operating out of the famous Jobs family garage. In very fine condition. Encapsulated in a PSA/DNA authentication holder.

Tektronix is known for manufacturing test and measurement devices such as oscilloscopes and logic analyzers, instruments that Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak might have used when building and testing the original Apple-1 computer. During this period in the summer of 1976, three months after founding the Apple Computer Company, they were hard at work building their first product.

Though initially conceived as a kit to be soldered together by the end user—like most enthusiast computers of the era—the Apple-1 became a finished product at the behest of Paul Terrell, owner of The Byte Shop in Mountain View, California, one of the first personal computer stores in the world. Terrell offered to buy 50 of the computers—at a wholesale price of $500 a piece, to retail at $666.66—but only if they came fully assembled. With this request, Terrell aimed to elevate the computer from the domain of the hobbyist/enthusiast to the realm of the mainstream consumer. Wozniak later placed Terrell's purchase order in perspective: 'That was the biggest single episode in all of the company's history. Nothing in subsequent years was so great and so unexpected.'

Thus, the Apple-1 was one of the first completely assembled 'personal' computers that simply worked out of the box with a few accessories that could be purchased from a local electronics store (a power supply, case, keyboard, and monitor were not included). All together, over a span of ten months or so, Jobs and Wozniak produced about 200 Apple-1 computers and sold 175 of them. A superb check signed by the innovative personal computing pioneer.

Auction Info

  • Auction Title: Remarkable Rarities
  • Dates: #638 - Ended June 23, 2022