The most valuable comic book of all time credited with starting the superhero genre is expected to fetch over £500,000 at auction
Action Comics #1 cost 10 cents when it was released in 1938 but collectors today will have to pay a fortune to get their hands on what is considered the most important issue ever made.
Much of the edition’s attraction stems from the fact that it was the earliest comic to feature Superman, the first recognised superhero.
This particular one has attracted so much attention from industry enthusiasts because it has remained unrestored, meaning no attempts have been made to renovate the copy.
The Certified Guaranty Company, which grade comic books based on their condition, have rated it 5.5/10, which for an item of its considerable age is very good.
Experts estimate that there are around 100 of the comics in existence.
Lon Allen, managing director of comics at US-based Heritage Auctions, who are selling the item, said: ‘Action Comics #1 is the holy grail for any dedicated collector.
‘Superman’s first appearance is of great significance.
‘This comic book, and Superman’s inclusion in it, started the superhero genre.
‘Before him there weren’t any and without him we wouldn’t have Batman, Captain America or the Incredible Hulk.’
Mr Allen added: ‘The collector mentality is all about originality and so it’s vitally important that this piece is unrestored.
‘In recent years this comic has seen a meteoric rise in value. There is every chance that this could approach the $1m mark.’
Action Comics #1 was published on April 18, 1938 by Detective Comics, a corporate predecessor of DC Comics.
The franchise was started by publisher Jack Liebowitz while Superman was the brainchild of co-creators Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster, who came up with the character as high school students five years earlier.
The world’s first superhero has remained as a cultural icon since his comic debut and plays the hero in Hollywood blockbusters to this day.
A mint condition Action Comics #1 sold on eBay for £2.4m in 2014, making it the most expensive comic book ever sold.
The edition available now comes from the collection of a hardcore comic book fan from the east coast of America who purchased it from a dealer in the 1990s for £20,000.