A Los Angeles auction house said on Tuesday it would sell the simple pine coffin in which the suspected assassin of President John F Kennedy was buried for almost 20 years.
Bidding will start at $1,000, (€750) but the item is expected to fetch strong interest from museums and collectors of presidential memorabilia when it goes on the block on December 16.
“There’s just a lot of interest in Kennedy and anything to do with his assassination,” said Laura Yntema, auction manager at Santa Monica, California-based Nate D Sanders.
The coffin was unearthed in October 1981 after a legal dispute between Oswald’s widow, Marina, and his brother, Robert. Marina successfully sought an exhumation to test a conspiracy theory that a lookalike Russian agent had been buried in her husband’s place, according to the auction house.
A medical exam showed the badly decomposed body was indeed Oswald’s, and his remains were returned to Shannon Rose Hill Memorial Park in Fort Worth, Texas, in a new casket.
The original coffin, which had suffered extensive water damage, is being sold by Baumgardner Funeral Home, the local undertaker which handled the re-internment.