Highlight of Elvis Week, Auction at Graceland records $800K

Gen. Omar Bradley owned 1942 Beretta Model M1934 9mm pistol gifted to Elvis Presley on Dec. 9, 1970. Presley later gifted the pistol to a girlfriend, Barbara Leigh. Price realized: $51,250. The Auction at Graceland image

MEMPHIS, Tenn. – With tens of thousands of fans in the city for Elvis Week to celebrate the life and career of the king of rock ’n’ roll, music fans and collectors in Memphis and around the world participated on site and online in hopes of going home with a piece of Elvis history at The Auction at Graceland. The 208-lot sale grossed approximately $800,000. Absentee and Internet live bidding was available through LiveAuctioneers.

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De Gaulle letter to FDR posts $33,689 at RR Auction

Handwritten draft of a letter by Gen. Charles de Gaulle (left), unsigned but incorporating his name within the text, to President Franklin D. Roosevelt. Price realized: $33,689. RR Auction image

BOSTON – A wartime letter written by French Gen. Charles de Gaulle to President Franklin D. Roosevelt sold for $33,689 according to RR Auction, which conducted the Fine Autographs and Artifacts auction Aug. 8.

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Banner day at Case’s new gallery as art, historical items fly high

Henri Jean Guillaume Martin, ‘L’Homme au Pressoir,’ oil on canvas. Price realized: $33,600. Case Antiques Inc. image

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – The July 14 auction at Case Antiques Inc. Auctions & Appraisals was all about history – in more ways than one. It was Case’s first auction in its new, flagship Knoxville gallery, representing a milestone for the 12-year-old firm. And, while there were noteworthy highlights in the categories of European and Western art, Chinese antiques, and Southern Decorative Arts, the smashing success of flags, maps, political and Civil War items made clear that Case is becoming a destination firm for historical artifacts and ephemera. Absentee and Internet bidding was available through LiveAuctioneers. Read more

Bruneau & Co. rings up impressive prices for historic phones

The Bell and Watson prototype phone, accompanied by original 1881 patent paperwork and a tag with Watson’s handwritten name and the date Aug. 2, 1881, sold for $40,000. Bruneau & Co. Auctioneers image

CRANSTON, R.I. – An original model of Alexander Graham Bell and Thomas A. Watson’s very first telephone from 1881 sold for $40,000 and a rare circa 1876 Bell Butter Stamp magneto telephone originally installed at a residence in Newport, Rhode Island, in 1891 brought $27,500 at an historical telephone auction held Aug. 4 by Bruneau & Co. Auctioneers. Absentee and Internet live bidding is available through LiveAuctioneers.

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Hopewell Culture artifacts surpass estimates at Cowan’s auction

This thin 11-inch Ross Blade made from Mill Creek chert was the highlight of a 19-item cache of Hopewell Culture artifacts found by the late Indiana collector Art Gerber. The group sold for $162,000. Cowan’s Auctions image

CINCINNATI – One of the most significant assemblages of Hopewell Culture prehistoric art ever collected sold for $162,000, more than double expectations, at Cowan’s Auctions during Part I of the Collection of Art Gerber: Ancient Art of the Eastern Woodlands. The cache was one of 382 lots offered in the July 28 auction from the estate of famed collector Art Gerber. Absentee and Internet live bidding was available through LiveAuctioneers.

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Nye & Company unearths treasures from Gilded Age mansion

The top lot of the auction was this Asian bento box grouping consisting of a cinnabar box, a cloisonné teapot and dish, which sold for $23,750. Nye & Company Auctioneers image

BLOOMFIELD, N.J. – It didn’t come with a sushi roll, ginger salad and miso soup, but a  cinnabar bento box, offered together with a cloisonné teapot and dish, gaveled for $23,750 to take top lot honors at a two-day weekday auction held July 25 and 26 by Nye & Company Auctioneers. Absentee and Internet live bidding was available through LiveAuctioneers.

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Chinese chairs achieve $375K at Moran Auctioneers

A pair of Chinese carved hardwood armchairs. Price realized: $375,000. John Moran Auctioneers image

MONROVIA, Calif. – Fine Chinese antiques dominated the offerings at John Moran Auctioneers’ Traditional Collector auction July 17. Top lot status of the night was awarded to a pair of 18th-century carved Chinese hardwood chairs each featuring a relief carving of Zhulong among clouds. Estimated at $20,000-$30,000, the chairs (above) took over three minutes to sell when a bidding war broke out among a few floor bidders and a full phone bank. A phone bidder won out and brought the chairs home for $375,000 (all prices include Moran’s buyer’s premium). Absentee and Internet bidding was available through LiveAuctioneers.

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Malcolm X manuscript sells for $7,000 at Guernsey’s auction

Page 1 of the typed Malcolm X manuscript. Guernsey’s image

NEW YORK (AP) – For decades, a burning question loomed over a towering 20th-century book: The Autobiography of Malcolm X: What happened to the reputedly missing chapters that may have contained some of the most explosive thoughts of the African-American firebrand assassinated in 1965?

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Rare Bob Dylan letter sells for nearly $30K at RR Auction

A 1975 handwritten personal letter from Bob Dylan to an old Greenwich Village friend sold for $29,645 . RR Auction image

BOSTON – A rare handwritten letter by Bob Dylan to an old Greenwich Village friend sold for $29,645 according to Boston-based RR Auction.

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Italian marble skull shocks Kaminski Auctions at $29K

Nineteenth-century carved Italian marble sculpture of a shrouded skull, unsigned. Hammer price realized: $29,000. Kaminski Auctions image

BEVERLY, Mass. – Kaminski Auctions held a highly successful summer auction on the weekend of July 14-15 at their gallery. The top lot of the sale was an early 19th-century marble sculpture of a carved skull, which came from an estate in Rome. With an estimate of $3,000-$5,000, the 22½-inch statue was hotly contested both on the phones and Internet before being finally hammered down at $29,000 plus the buyer’s premium. Absentee and Internet live bidding was available through LiveAuctioneers.

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