Buzz Aldrin’s moon-landing jacket fetches nearly $2.8 million at auction

The high bidder for the jacket worn by astronaut Buzz Aldrin on his historic first mission to the moon’s surface in 1969 paid a record-setting nearly $2.8 million for the unique piece of Americana on Tuesday.

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The garment, the Apollo 11 spaceflight jacket worn by Aldrin en route to be the second man to walk on the moon, was sold as part of Sotheby’s “Buzz Aldrin: American Icon” collection.

According to The New York Times, the custom-fitted, white, Teflon-coated jacket sold following a fierce nine-minute bidding war.

The winning bidder, who has not been identified publicly, participated by phone, according to The Associated Press.

The auctioneer called the jacket “the most valuable American space-flown artifact ever sold at auction,” the Times reported, noting that the garments worn by Aldrin’s Apollo 11 crewmates – Neil Armstrong and Michael Collins - are owned by the Smithsonian Institution.

According to Sotheby’s, the jacket features patches with Aldrin’ name and the Apollo 11 logo and is the most expensive jacket ever sold at auction, Forbes reported.

Pre-auction estimates indicated the garment might fetch as much as $2 million, the business news outlet reported.

According to Forbes, the record for the most valuable American space-flown artifact ever sold at auction prior to Tuesday’s bidding rested with an Apollo 11 lunar dust bag that sold for $1.8 million in 2017.

Meanwhile, the previously most expensive jacket ever sold at auction was pop icon Michael Jackson’s red leather jacket worn in the “Thriller” music video, which fetched $1.8 million in 2011, according to Guinness World Records.

All told, 68 of 69 lots of Mr. Aldrin’s belongings were sold for a combined $8 million on Tuesday, the Times reported.