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Lot #8004
Steve Jobs Signed Applesoft ROM Chip

Amazing integrated circuit signed by Steve Jobs in 1983: "Hope you enjoy the chip—an Applesoft ROM"

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Estimate: $50000+
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Amazing integrated circuit signed by Steve Jobs in 1983: "Hope you enjoy the chip—an Applesoft ROM"

Remarkable original Applesoft ROM chip as used in the Apple II Plus computer systems of the early 1980s, signed across the bottom on a thin sliver of tape in black ink by the company's legendary co-founder, "steve jobs." The chip is taped to the bottom of a typed letter by Jobs, one page, 8 x 10.5, Apple Computer letterhead, November 16, 1983. In full: "Thanks for letting us know of your support. It's really great to know that our fans up in the bleachers are cheering for us. Keep the faith! PS: Hope you enjoy the chip—an Applesoft ROM." Rather than signing the letter, Jobs draws an arrow down to the signed chip, which has its pins pushed through the paper and bent on the reverse to secure it. Produced exclusively for Apple, the chip is imprinted on the top with identification markings and Apple's copyright notice. Matted to an overall size of 11 x 14. In fine condition, with some surface loss to the lower portion of the letter from tape removal; the tape currently adhering the chip to the letter does not encroach on Jobs' signature.

Accompanied by a provenance statement from the consignor, who was an avid user of Apple computers in the late 1970s and early 1980s. In 1983, he wrote a 'fan letter' to Steve Jobs, expressing his enthusiasm for Apple's products and the way that they had changed society. As an afterthought, he added a playful postscript: "Send me an autographed integrated circuit chip and I’ll hang it on my office wall!!" He explains: "Some weeks later I received a reply from Steve with not only signed a chip, but he had anchored the chip onto the letter by pushing the pins through and bending them over on the back side. Which I thought was a pretty creative twist. He put tape on the top, signed the tape, and referenced the chip in the letter, an Applesoft ROM. I did, in fact, hang it on my home office wall for many years. I taped across the chip [probably not the best idea in hindsight] because when hanging vertically I was afraid, over time, the weight of the chip might cause it to tear away from the letter."

A notoriously difficult signer, Steve Jobs routinely declined most requests—whether in person or through the mail, he very rarely satisfied the appeals of autograph seekers. In another famous letter from earlier in 1983, sold by RR Auction in 2021, he bluntly said, "I'm afraid I don't sign autographs," before curiously endorsing the letter with his distinctive, lowercase signature. In this instance, Jobs again made an amazing exception to his rule—perhaps intrigued by the novelty of the request, or impressed by the genuine enthusiasm of his correspondent, he proudly signed one of the Applesoft ROM chips essential to the Apple II series of computers—the company's first mass-market success, which paved the way for the introduction of the pioneering Macintosh in 1984. This is undoubtedly one of the most unique and desirable Steve Jobs autographs in existence.

Auction Info

  • Auction Title: Steve Jobs and the Apple Computer Revolution
  • Dates: #660 - Ended March 16, 2023

This item is Pre-Certified by PSA/DNA
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