He bought an old picture from a flea market for only $2

Dig around, suggests the man who discovered a magnificent photograph of Billy the Kid playing croquet.
Randy Guijarro told the Guardian on Monday, “I hope this inspires others to delve into trunks and attics in quest of lost gems.

an 1878 image of Billy the Kid playing croquet that measures 45 inches.
A picture of Billy the Kid playing croquet that was found at a thrift store and was originally only worth $2 has now sold for millions of dollars.

In 2010, Guijarro paid $2 for three tintypes measuring four by five inches from an antique shop in Fresno, California. It is today worth several million dollars.

The telecommunications specialist and his wife Linda have made it clear that they intend to utilize a portion of the cash from their unanticipated find to fund additional exploration activities.

We may benefit from a new car.

We intend to look into forgotten historical events in the USA and internationally.

We like traveling the globe together. The chase is a breathtaking show.

The man leaning on the mallet was Wild West figure Henry McCarty, better known as Billy the Kid, and the other individuals in the photograph were members of his gang, the Regulators, playing croquet in New Mexico in 1878, he discovered after studying the image under a microscope at home.

This is only the second authenticated photograph of the culprit ever taken, and it is valued at $5 million.

On Sunday, a National Geographic special with Kevin Costner that described the five years of inquiry and investigation into its veracity was broadcast.

It was very incredible. Guijarro, 54, stated, “It was incredibly difficult for us to observe that.” We’ve been entirely open and honest with you; we hope the journey was enjoyable!

He went on to add that false leads and mistrust stymied the inquiry, leaving the two feeling unsettled and unsure of whom to believe.

There are happy and unhappy moments. It had been a long and lonesome voyage. The image appeared to be taken from The Twilight Zone. There’s no doubt about it—too it’s good to be true.

The phrase “Billy the Kid” conjures up thoughts of the Wild West and the legendary New Yorker who, at the age of 21, was shot by Pat Garrett, the sheriff of Lincoln County, after a brief but brutal career as an outlaw.


Yet, some historians assert that he only committed nine murders. The only other known image of him, showing him sitting with a gun around 1880, sold for $2.3 million (£1.5 million) in 2011.

With his wife, who also has a passion for collecting, Guijarro has spent the most of his life gathering different artifacts, such as coins, sports cards, comic books, and old photographs.

On his way home from work one late summer night in 2010, he got lost in Fresno’s Tower neighborhood and came across Fulton’s Folly Antique Collective.

Guijarro was told to approach two individuals carrying “junk crates,” who, according to the vendor, were emptying a storage unit and trying to get rid of its contents.

He suggested $2 and chose three images, some of which featured croquet players and other historical situations. They took it by force.

Guijarro has only hazy memories of them. Now that everything has become so hazy, I can’t even remember who they were.

He was pleased by the croquet ball’s makeup, but it took him a week of close inspection to identify the notorious bandit.

You could hand him a Winchester rifle, was the remark made in response to the man’s headgear, demeanor, and the fact that he was standing on a croquet stick. Holy cow, I thought, that’s Billy the Kid.

He describes Linda, who was enlisted to look into the other Regulators, as “a wonderful, smart woman.”

Thanks to the internet, she was able to connect with Tom O’Folliard and Charlie Bowdre, two other croquet players. Guijarro said, “That was really fantastic.

The remains of the schoolhouse in Chavez County, New Mexico were discovered thanks to the efforts of researchers, collectors, facial recognition specialists, and others. All 18 individuals in the photograph were recognized.

The image was identified as having been taken soon after a wedding in 1878, barely one month after the gang had taken part in the bloody Lincoln County argument.

It is insured for $5 million by the numismatics business Kagin’s Inc. of California, which is currently looking for a private buyer.

The curiosity is there, but “we’re not counting our chickens before they hatch,” Guijarro remarked.

He and Linda intend to purchase a new car, pay off debt, assist a few close friends and family members, and start organizing additional treasure hunts afterward.

They almost always sell the items they collect, he claims, proving they are not hoarders. Hunting is essential because “we’d be sitting on a hundred acres of stuff else” if we didn’t.


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