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Lot #716
Celebrity Signature Collection

CAST OF THOUSANDS: Gigantic collection of more than 16,000 in-person signatures, including athletes, authors, Oscar winners, and “greenhorns” who became Hollywood legends

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CAST OF THOUSANDS: Gigantic collection of more than 16,000 in-person signatures, including athletes, authors, Oscar winners, and “greenhorns” who became Hollywood legends

An astounding collection of approximately 16,500 ink signatures on individual white and off-white 5 x 3 cards, representing the fruits of a single collector’s patience, tenacity, and devotion over the course of several decades from the 1950s through the 1990s. In addition to the sheer volume of luminaries—including Oscar winners, musicians, authors, athletes, politicians, and celebrities who died prematurely—the collection is particularly notable for scores of early examples of up-and-comers who went on to great prominence in the entertainment field. Though few might have guessed at the time they signed, budding talents like Ronny Howard, James Caan, Robert DeNiro, Clint Eastwood, Al Pacino, and Robert Redford would indeed go on to write their names across Hollywood history. (Many of these early examples are especially desirable for their unusual clarity, a characteristic that tended to degrade as the signer’s celebrity grew. Godfather collectors, for example, will surely ap- preciate the bold and fully legible early signature of Al Pacino, who has become notorious for his puzzling, tangled “heiroglyph.”) By the same token, the collection also boasts several prime childhood examples of stars who attained their greatest fame in youth—including Brandon De Wilde, Jay North, Tony Dow, and Jerry Mathers as the Beaver—preserving a relic of their memorable juvenile careers as if in amber. The scope of the collection is such that many complete and near-complete television and film casts can be assembled. Most of the cards are inscribed to Ken and bear small affixed photos per the popular collecting practice of the day. The attractive state of preservation offers ample opportunity for effective and varied display, from single examples matted with a photo to elaborate group and “theme” presentations. The overwhelming volume precludes a complete list; however, a representative cross-section of approximately 300 names appears below. Prospective bidders are cordially invited to examine the collection by appointment at our offices in Amherst, New Hampshire. Apart from the occasional minor, typical flaw, the items are in fine, clean condition overall. More than an instant collection—a sweeping chronicle of American entertainment in the second half of the 20th century! R&R COA. A sampling of the signers: Nick Adams, Woody Allen, Herbert Anderson, Pamela Anderson, Ann-Margret, Desi Arnaz, Fred Astaire, Max Baer, Jr., Raymond Bailey, Carroll Baker, James Baldwin, Tallulah Bankhead, Red Barber, Brigitte Bardot, Freddie Bartholomew, Richard Basehart, Francis Bavier, Warren Beatty, Bea Benadaret, William Bendix, Tony Bennett, Edgar Bergen, Busby Berkeley, Milton Berle, Joe Besser, Carl Betz, Jaqueline Bisset, Bill Bixby, Amanda Blake, Eubie Blake, Mel Blanc, Ray Bolger, Charles Boyer (2), Peter Boyle, Charles Bronson, Louise Brooks, James Brown, Jim Brown, Pearl S. Buck, Victor Buono, George Burns, Richard Burton, James Caan, Bruce Cabot, Sebastian Cabot, Sid Caesar, Godfrey Cambridge, John Candy, Freddie Cannon, Frank Capra, Hoagy Carmichael, John Carradine, Johnny Carson, Jeff Chandler, Paddy Chayefsky, Chubby Checker, Maurice Chevalier, Dick Clark, Fred Clark, Mae Clarke, Lee J. Cobb, James Coburn, Steve Cochran, Joan Collins, Chester Conklin, Chuck Connors, Jackie Coogan, Noel Coward, Wally Cox, Buster Crabbe, Michael Crawford, Walter Cronkite, Ken Curtis, Tony Curtis, Rodney Dangerfield, Ann B. Davis, Doris Day, Yvonne DeCarlo, Gabriel Dell, Robert DeNiro, Bob Denver, Brandon DeWilde, Cameron Diaz, Leonardo DiCaprio, Marlene Dietrich, James Doohan, Diana Dors, Kirk Douglas, Tony Dow, Don Drysdale, Jimmy Durante, Leo Durocher, Robert Duvall, Clint Eastwood, Buddy Ebsen, Duane Eddy, Nelson Eddy, Carmen Electra, Shelley Fabares, Fabian (3), Douglas Fairbanks, Jr., Peter Falk, Federico Fellini, Edna Ferber, Albert Finney, Carrie Fisher, Joe Flynn, Margot Fonteyn, Harrison Ford, Whitey Ford, Bob Fosse, Redd Foxx, Bill Frawley, Joe Frazier, Frank Frisch, Annette Funicello, Ava Gardner, James Garner, Christopher George, Richard Gere, Andy Gibb, Frank Gifford, Dorothy Gish, Lillian Gish, Paulette Goddard, Barry Goldwater, Samuel Goldwyn, Benny Goodman, Leo B. Gorcey, Frank Gorshin, Betty Grable, Rocky Graziano, Lorne Greene, Joan Hackett, Larry Hagman, Alan Hale, Jack Haley, Huntz Hall, Juanita Hall, Mark Hamill, Margaret Hamilton, Neil Hamilton, Richard Harris, Elizabeth Hartman, Laurence Harvey, Raymond Hatton, Joey Heatherton, Hugh Hefner, Lillian Hellman, Wanda Hendrix, Sonja Henie, Paul Henreid, Audrey Hepburn, Woody Herman, Sterling Holloway, Oscar Homolka, Darla Hood, Bob Hope, Lena Horne, Ron Howard, Trevor Howard, Rock Hudson, Henry Hull, Jeffrey Hunter (2), Tab Hunter, John Huston, Will Hutchins, Jim Hutton, Hugh Jackman, David Janssen (2), Ingemar Johanssen, Elton John, James Earl Jones, Madeline Kahn, Elia Kazan, Ruby Keeler, Harvey Keitel, Brian Keith, Emmett Kelly, Ted Kennedy, Deborah Kerr, Persis Khambatta, B.B. King, Stephen King, Ted Knight, Don Knotts, Walter Koenig, Nancy Kulp, Arthur Lake, Hedy Lamarr, Elsa Lanchester, Gypsy Rose Lee, Janet Leigh, Jerry Lewis, Liberace, Cleavon Little, Little Richard, Frederick Loewe, Joshua Logan, Gina Lollobrigida, Richard Long, Richard Loo, Mike Love, Paul Lynde (2), Sue Lyon, Jeanette MacDonald, Harriet MacGibbon, Norman Mailer, Strother Martin (2), Dean Martin, Zeppo Marx, Giulietta Masina, James Mason, Jerry Mathers, Marie McDonald, Roddy McDowall, Darren McGavin, Butterfly McQueen, Burgess Meredith, Ethel Merman, Arthur Miller, Hayley Mills, Yvette Mimieux, Sal Mineo, Robert Mitchum, Elizabeth Montgomery, Archie Moore, Roger Moore, Agnes Moorehead, Mantan Moreland, Vic Morrow, Zero Mostel, Joe Namath, Alan Napier, Ramon Navarro, Pola Negri, Leonard Nimoy, Jay North, Rudolph Nureyev, Carroll O'Connor, Donald O'Connor, Maureen O'Hara, Maureen O'Sullivan, Peter O'Toole, Warren Oates, Al Pacino, Fess Parker, Larry Parks, Mike Parks, Floyd Patterson, Anthony Perkins, Joe Pesci, Slim Pickens, Wilson Pickett, Otto Preminger, Vincent Price, Richard Pryor, George Raft (2), Claude Raines, Charlotte Rampling, Sally Rand, Tony Randall, Nancy Davis Reagan, Robert Redford, Alan Reed, Robert Reed, Steve Reeves, Michael Rennie, Burt Reynolds, Diana Rigg, Hal Roach, Pernell Roberts, Edward G. Robinson, Rochester, Rosalind Russell, Irene Ryan, Robert Ryan, Telly Savalas, Gia Scala, Natalie Schafer, Max Schmeling, Romy Schneider, David O. Selznick, Omar Sharif, William Shatner, Artie Shaw, Robert Shaw, Dick Shawn, Cybill Shepherd, Ann Sheridan, Phil Silvers, Walter Slezak, Kate Smith, Jack Soo, Mickey Spillane, Barbara Stanwyck, Rod Steiger, Milburn Stone, Woody Strode, Ed Sullivan, Frank Sutton, Gloria Swanson, Patrick Swayze, Jacques Tati, Elizabeth Taylor, James Taylor, Shirley Temple, Danny Thomas, Tiny Tim, Ike Turner, Johnny Unitas, Lee Van Cleef, Mamie Van Doren, Jersey Joe Walcott, Ethel Waters, Jack Webb, Johnny Weissmuller, Raquel Welch, Mae West, Richard Widmark, Jack Wild, Gene Wilder, Dennis Wilson, Roland Winters, Fay Wray, Ed Wynn, Tony Zale

Auction Info

  • Auction Title:
  • Dates: #331 - Ended March 12, 2008