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Auction of RBG’s Books Soars 3,900% Over Estimate

The online-only sale at Bonhams of the late U.S. Supreme Court Justice's library blew past its pre-sale estimate.

The late U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg in a 2006 photo.

The late U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg in a 2006 photo.

Photographer: Mark Wilson/Getty Images Europe

An online auction of the contents of Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s personal library soared 3,900% over estimate to total $2.4 million at Bonhams on Thursday, testifying to the cult of personality that surrounds the late U.S. Supreme Court justice.

“We had over a thousand registrants for the auction,” says Catherine Williamson, director of fine books and manuscripts at Bonhams, who was in charge of the sale. “In a normal books and manuscripts sale, you get 200.” The sale was “white glove,” meaning every single lot sold.