Menu Signed By Mao Zedong Brings A Quarter Million Dollars At Auction

This photo provided by RR Auction shows an official menu for a state banquet signed by former Chinese leader Mao Zedong that has been auctioned for $275,000. (RR Auction via AP)
This photo provided by RR Auction shows an official menu for a state banquet signed by former Chinese leader Mao Zedong that has been auctioned for $275,000. (RR Auction via AP)
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BOSTON (AP) — An official menu for a state banquet that bears the signature of former Chinese leader Mao Zedong has been auctioned for $275,000.

Boston-based RR Auction said the menu auctioned Wednesday was for a banquet held in Beijing on October 19, 1956, and commemorated the first state visit to China by Pakistan's Prime Minister Huseyn Shaheed Suhrawardy.

The menu was signed in fountain pen by six influential Chinese statesmen, including Mao and Premier Zhou Enlai. The banquet featured foods from both nations and included delicacies such as “Consommé of Swallow Nest and White Agaric,” “Shark’s Fin in Brown Sauce,” and “Roast Peking Duck.”

“To hold a menu signed by Mao Zedong and Zhou Enlai is to hold a piece of the past – a piece that tells a story of diplomatic engagement, cultural exchange, and the forging of friendships that have endured through the decades,” Bobby Livingston, executive vice president at RR Auction, said in a statement.

Other items auctioned off included a fully operational World War II-era Enigma coding machine for $206,253, a Thomas Edison-signed document for a light bulb patent for $22,154, and a check signed by Steve Jobs to Radio Shack was sold for $46,063.

The check, dated July 23, 1976, is payable to RadioShack for a whopping $4.01, and was signed by Jobs the same year he and Steve Wozniak launched Apple in a Silicon Valley garage.