Jobs, Wozniak -- and Wayne? What happened to the third co-founder of Apple

Who is Ronald Wayne, an Apple co-founder?

PAHRUMP, Nev. -- It's well known that Apple started with two guys in a garage. But there was also a third guy: Ronald Wayne.

The founding document of Apple computer company was signed by Steve Wozniak, Steve Jobs and Wayne. 

Wayne, a few years older than Jobs and Wozniak, had experience in video games and aerospace. He even drew Apple's first logo.

"Jobs said, 'That's it. We're going to start a company.' And Woz and himself would have 45 percent each and I would have 10 percent as the tiebreaker," Wayne recalled. 

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Ronald Wayne CBS News

Now, 10 percent of Apple would be worth about $100 billion. But instead of being fabulously wealthy, Wayne lives modestly in Pahrump, Nevada -- a desert town between Las Vegas and Death Valley -- a long way from Silicon Valley. 

"Twelve days after I signed this contract, I had my name taken off the contract," Wayne said. 

He gave up his 10 percent of Apple for just $2,300 because in 1976, Wayne had his own dreams.

"I also knew that I was standing in the shadow of giants, and as a result, I knew I was never going to have a product of my own to develop," Wayne said. 

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Ronald Wayne, the third co-founder of Apple. CBS News

He went on to design slot machines, deal in stamps and collect antique guns.

"Was I very successful at it? Not entirely, but it was fun," Wayne said. 

He does have one regret: That copy of the founding document on his wall, it's just that -- a copy. In the 1990s, he sold the original to a dealer for just $500. In 2011, it was auctioned for $1.3 million.

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The first Apple logo, designed by Ronald Wayne.  CBS News


"I don't own an Apple product," Wayne said, "not even an iPhone."

But he's still getting requests for autographed copies of that first Apple logo he designed. Those who know Apple's history know that Ronald Wayne has a place in it.

  • John Blackstone
    John Blackstone

    From his base in San Francisco, CBS News correspondent John Blackstone covers breaking stories throughout the West. That often means he is on the scene of wildfires, earthquakes, floods, hurricanes and rumbling volcanoes. He also reports on the high-tech industry in Silicon Valley and on social and economic trends that frequently begin in the West.