Family of scientist who discovered double-helix to sell his Nobel Prize
Nick Clark is the arts correspondent of The Independent. He joined the newspaper in June 2007, initially reporting on the stock markets. He has covered beats including the City, and technology, media and telecoms and made the switch to arts in December 2011. He has also contributed articles to the sports section.
Tuesday 26 February 2013
Six decades after Francis Crick helped identify the structure of DNA, the Nobel Prize he received for the discovery is going under the hammer.
The Cambridge academic was awarded the Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine alongside James Watson and Maurice Wilkins in 1962, nine years after deciphering DNA’s double helix . But his family have now decided to put the medal and diploma, alongside other memorabilia, up for auction – the first time a Nobel Prize has been up for public sale.
Crick died in 2004 at the age of 88, and the 23-carat gold medal, which is engraved with his initials and the date of its award, has been in a safe-deposit box in California since the death of his widow three years later. Kindra Crick, the scientist’s granddaughter, said: “The family had a hard time knowing what to do with it the Nobel Prize. We were keen it didn’t stay in storage. We needed to make it available to someone who could take care of it but also put it on display.”
“This is a part of science history and there are a select group who would want to buy it and also be able to put it on show, which we would find hard, We hope it can inspire the next generation of scientists.”
Even during his lifetime, Crick kept the award locked away. His children do not recall seeing it after the ceremony, while granddaughter Kindra has never seen it.
“He was not one to have certificates on his wall. He was not one to rest on his laurels,” she said.
The initial bid for the medal and diploma is $500,000 (£330,000) but some have estimated it could end up going for as much as $5m when it comes up for auction in New York in April. Part of the proceeds will help fund the Francis Crick Institute, which is due to open in London in 2015.
- 2 Friends 20th anniversary: Alison Jackson photographs reunited cast
- 3 There is literally not a single woman in this iPhone 6 queue
- 4 Hitler’s former food taster reveals the horrors of the Wolf’s Lair
- 5 Scottish independence: Tory revolt against 'devo max' grows as Rail Minister Claire Perry joins
Scottish independence referendum: Frankie Boyle reacts to nation's 'No' vote - 'To be fair, I've always hated Scotland'
Scottish independence live: Scotland gives a clear 'No' in historic referendum - as it happened
Iranian blogger found guilty of insulting Prophet Mohammad on Facebook sentenced to death
Scottish independence: Tory revolt against 'devo max' grows as Rail Minister Claire Perry joins
Hitler’s former food taster reveals the horrors of the Wolf’s Lair
Daniele Watts: Django Unchained actress detained by Los Angeles police after being mistaken for a prostitute
Scottish independence referendum: A nation divided against itself
Scottish independence: David Cameron is becoming the 'George Bush of Britain'
Russia freezes Ukraine into submission: Kiev admits country doesn't have enough fuel for winter
Scottish independence: The Queen breaks silence on referendum debate – as think tank warns of £14bn black hole if Scotland votes Yes
Archbishop of Canterbury admits doubts about existence of God
£30000 - £35000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Marketing Manager (CIM, B2B, MS Offi...
£22000 - £25000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A highly successful organisation wit...
£1 per day: Randstad Education Leeds: Job Purpose To work closely with the he...
£32000 - £42000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our client is curr...