Chase National Bank check, 6.25 x 2.75, filled out and signed by Dean, “James Dean,” payable to himself. “James Dean,” for $15, March 12, 1954, and again endorsed on the reverse, “James Dean,” above a 54th Street Tavern, Inc., stamp. In fine condition, with expected bank stamps and cancellation holes (only affecting his signature in the payee field). There are no folds and the check remains as crisp as the day it was cashed. Dean hung out at the 54th Street Tavern, which is mentioned in his biographies, and the establishment would cash his checks. Within one month of writing this check, Dean would be cast as Cal Trask in the screen adaptation of Steinbeck’s East of Eden, departing from New York on April 8, 1954, bound for Hollywood to begin shooting. An excessively rare Dean item signed three times, representing the time that he embarked on his short but bright cinematic career.
Terms and abbreviations used in our descriptions.