Orville Wright’s Gag Check

orville-wright-gag-checkAbove is a gag check created by one Mr. Orville Wright.

One might believe that with all the secrecy he and his brother Wilbur exhibited to protect their aeroplane from 1903-1908, and with subsequent lawsuits for patent infringement, that the boys wouldn’t have much of a sense of a humor.

Well… here’s proof that Orville did.

Up for sale at a current Christie’s auction – a cheque/check  dated December 25, 1932 and signed by Orville Wright.

It was sent to his longtime correspondent and defender Earl Findley for “all the mud he has slung at me.”

According to the Christie’s description:  Wright alters a partly-printed check, crossing out the local bank name and replacing it with “(Left) Bank of the Potomac” and crossing out the Dayton dateline with “Washington, D.C.” ordering to Earl B. Fridley [sic]” to “Pay back… $00000000” or, as spelled out: “All the mud he has slung at me————“ while adding along the left margin “c/Shoes Fan Belt Gardner Aldrin.”

Winning bidder of the check/cheque will receive a typed letter from Mabel Beck (I believe she may have been Findley’s secretary noting that the check settles “in full his account with you.”

Expected bid to be from US$2,000 to $3,000.

Click HERE for a direct link to the upcoming Christie’s Fine Printed Books & Manuscripts (including Americana) auction to be held in New York on December 14, 2016. Happy Bidding on this and many other aviation articles.

About mreman47

Andrew was born in London, UK, raised in Toronto, Canada, and cavorted in Ohtawara, Japan for three years. He is married, has a son and a cat. He has over 35,000 comic books and a plethora of pioneer aviation-related tobacco and sports cards and likes to build LEGO dioramas. He has written and been an editor for various industrial magazines, has scripted comic books, ghost-written blogs for business sectors galore, and hates writing in the 3rd person. He also hates having to write this crap that no one will ever read. He works on his Pioneers Of Aviation - a cool blog on early fliers - even though it takes him so much time to do. He also wants to do more writing - for money, though. Help him out so he can stop talking in the 3rd person.
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4 Responses to Orville Wright’s Gag Check

  1. Sarah E. Dunne, Librarian/Archivist, Owls Head Transportation Museum says:

    That is a whole lot funnier than the cancelled check of Orville’s (authenticated) that we have in our collection! Ours is for $3, made out to the Dayton, Ohio Rotary club. It’s refreshing to see proof that they could be light-hearted and even silly. Thank you for posting this.


  2. Sarah says:

    Thank you! And keep the great cigarette card posts coming. And all – you can check out a random array of what we’ve been digitizing at http://ohtm.pastperfectonline%5Bdot%5Dcom/randomimages (not just aviation – sorry – you’ll have to suffer through some car/truck/motorcycle images as well). And if you’re planning a visit, give us a heads-up at info@ohtm[dot]org. We’re big enough to really surprise you with what we have at the museum, but still small enough to be able to – and enjoy – giving personalized tours.


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