Weekly News Roundup: July 26-30

Among the art, antiques and collectibles headlines, we find Elvis and Frisky the “Coronation Street” cat, a piano with a prestigious pedigree and a very expensive handbag.

From The Chicago Tribune:
Auction house drops Elvis embalming tools

Yuck. A Chicago auction house has Elvis death memorabilia on the block—including the toe tag that was placed on his corpse. The house is pulling the embalming tools because there is a dispute over whether they are truly the instruments used in Elvis’s embalming. Did we say yuck?

From AFP:
British TV cat’s ashes sell for 1,200 dollars: auction house

And speaking of yuck, a cat that appeared in the credits of “Coronation Street,” a popular British soap opera, had out-auditioned 5,000 other felines. Frisky was seen ready to pounce on pigeons and was popular enough that someone spent $1,200 to get his ashes. The cat had run out of its nine lives 10 years ago.

From The Commercial Appeal:
Elvis’ baby grand piano among items up for auction on Aug. 14

Hooray. Elvis news that’s not yucky. The Knabe grand piano Presley refinished in white with gold trim is up for sale. The piano has a great provenance. Its keys were tickled by W. C. Handy, Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Cab Calloway and Jerry Lee Lewis. The instrument is part of an August 14 Heritage auction that is being called the “ultimate Elvis auction.” Until the next one, of course.

From Bloomberg:
Femme Fatale Makes $2 Million, Handbag $65,000 as Auctions Buzz

Okay, an Edvard Munch painting of a sultry lady going for $2 million is one thing. A lady’s crocodile bag going for $65,000, well, that is another matter. What would make some Russian cough up that much? It being a “Birken” manufactured by Hermes may have something to do with it.

From The Associated Press via Auction Central News:
Ansel Adams negatives found at yard sale have value of $200 million

It took six months of expert examination to establish that the 65 negatives bought for $45 at a yard sale are worth $200 million. The Ansel Adams negatives came from early in his career and were believed to have been destroyed in a Yosemite National Park fire. Rick Norsigian, a construction worker, bargained the seller down to $45 in 2000 with no idea of their value. He just liked Yosemite pictures. Wonder if he quit his day job yet. To the credit of Norsigian, he has tried to find the yard-sale seller to share in the wealth.

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