Haunted Mansion Concept Art - Original painting - Dan Martinez - Van Eaton Galleries

Disney’s The Haunted Mansion Concept Art In Auction!

Friends, I know I am not in the minority when I say it’s hard to top Disney’s The Haunted Mansion. It was announced just last week that Van Eaton Galleries would be holding a very special auction. Entitled The Life and Career of Disney Legend Rolly Crump, it will feature artwork and items from his long career as an Imagineer. Including of course some rare Haunted Mansion concept art!
Haunted Mansion Concept Art - Van Eaton Galleries catalog cover

While it may have begun it’s life…or is that afterlife as the Museum of the Weird. There is certainly no denying that The Haunted Mansion has captured the hearts and minds of fans all over the world. The attraction was started in earnest in 1961, when visitors were given handbills announcing the opening year as 1963. The doors to The Haunted Mansion wouldn’t open to guests however until 1969.
Haunted Mansion Concept Art - View Master Reel

Rolly Crump was one of the two Imagineers, that Walt Disney approached to come up with elements of the attraction. Remember it had begun as The Museum of the Weird, so some ideas were gypsy wagons, haunted furniture, as well as man-eating plants. In fact back in 1951, an illustration was created by Harper Goff. Disney would go on to ask legendary Imagineer Ken Anderson to concoct a tale to match the illustration.
Haunted Mansion Concept Art - Harper Goff

From such humble beginnings, over the years the core of The Haunted Mansion would begin to take place. Jettisoning the idea of The Museum of the Weird it instead became the final resting place for 999 Happy Haunts. As well as becoming an attraction whose collectibles are greatly sought after. You do not have to take my word for it, just ask Guillermo del Toro if you need more proof.
Haunted Mansion Concept Art - Guillermo del Toro

Which is why this auction by Van Eaton Galleries is so incredible, friends. Take a moment and look over a few of the many objects being offered. How does an original spoon to celebrate the 1969 opening strike you? A rare collectible doesn’t quite cover it, right?
Haunted Mansion Concept Art - Ice Cream Spoon - Van Eaton Galleries

Or perhaps you would be more interested in some of Rolly Crump’s original illustrations for the Candle Men concept?
Haunted Mansion Concept Art - Candle Man - Museum of the Weird - Van Eaton Galleries

Maybe a signed print of the concept by Crump for the Gypsy Wagon?
Haunted Mansion Concept Art - Van Eaton Galleries - Gypsy Wagon

A huge thank you to Van Eaton Galleries for the images used in this article. As a matter of fact you can follow any of the links to the auction site yourself. In addition you can look through through or even order a catalog for The Haunted Mansion concept art auction.

Want to go a little deeper than the auction of that Haunted Mansion concept art? Why not listen to Rolly Crump discuss the attraction’s creation yourself?

[Via] The Walt Disney Family Museum

Original fragments of the Star Spangled Banner Going Up For Auction

I got this press release the other day and I am not sure how I feel about this. It seems like they should be reunited with the flag or something. Here is the release. You can be the judge.

Two superbly documented fragments of the original Star Spangled Banner, the most iconic of all American symbols, expected to bring $60,000+ in June 21 Arms & Militaria auction in Dallas

DALLAS, TX – Two superbly documented fragments of the original Star Spangled Banner, which inspired America’s national anthem in 1814 as it flew in defiance of the British over Ft. McHenry in Baltimore, MD, and were later in the collection of a Philadelphia museum, are expected to bring $60,000+ when they come up for bid as part of Heritage Auctions’ June 21 Arms & Militaria auction.

It is the first time in modern auction history, to the knowledge of Heritage specialists, that any fragments of the flag have appeared in a public auction.

“There is no American symbol more potent than our flag,” said Dennis Lowe, Director of Arms & Militaria at Heritage, “and there is no version of our flag more important than the Star Spangled Banner. These fragments are a part of our collective history, and should be valued as such by serious collectors of Americana.”

The history of these amazing fragments, coming to auction from a high-end collector who has owned them for the last 30 years, is rock solid and indisputable. It’s common knowledge that the flag, which was commissioned in Baltimore by Brevet Lt. Col. George Armistead in 1814, went home with him after the battle, where it stayed for the remainder of his life, passing to his wife upon his death and subsequently to, first, Armistead’s daughter and then to his son, who loaned it to the Smithsonian in 1907. In 1910 the gift was made permanent.

“When the Smithsonian got the flag and compared it to the original specs, they found that a full eight feet of the flag was missing on the fly end,” said Lowe. “The family had, over the years, snipped off pieces of the flag as souvenirs to give friends, family and visitors. That accounts for these fragments and the diminished size of the flag.”

The current fragments were donated in 1914 to the Military Order of the Loyal Legion of the United States Museum in Philadelphia – a treasury of the holdings of that patriotic order organized just after Lincoln’s death in April 1865 by Union military officers who fought in the Civil War – by former Union officer, author and all-around Renaissance man John Heysinger, whose clean script details the fragments on the manuscript mount.

“These tattered and torn fragments are a part of the flag which flew on Fort McHenry on the night of September 12th 1812,” wrote Heysinger, in part, of the battle which actually occurred on Sept. 14, 1814. “The above pieces are positively a portion of that precious relic. The flag is now in the National Museum Washington D.C.”

Also accompanying the pieces is a booklet, printed in 1914 in Philadelphia by John Wanamaker, commemorating the 100th anniversary of the battle, in which are pictured these exact flag fragments, with the caption stating “A portion of the very Star Spangled Banner that inspired that song. A photographic reproduction of portions of the original Fort McHenry flag now in the possession of the Ridgway Library, Philadelphia.”

Further documentation on the provenance of the piece comes from an accompanying letter, dated April 4, 1969, from Smithsonian Institution representative Donald E. Kloster, to the Union League of Philadelphia, where many of the Loyal Legion artifacts were stored and displayed, concerning these fragments.

“We’ve had consultation from the most respected and well-known flag experts in the country,” said Lowe. “They all agree that this is unquestionably authentic.”

All of this does, however, beg the question: If the family gave away so many snips of the flag, shouldn’t there then be numerous other pieces of it to have surfaced from libraries, attics and bookshelves across the nation?

“I would certainly imagine that was the case at one point,” said Lowe, “but it’s likely that people have no idea what they have or had. For anyone that got fragments themselves, in person, from the Armistead family, there was no need to document it absolutely. They knew just what they had and probably threw it in a drawer or a book to take out occasionally to show friends. I would imagine many of the fragments simply got lost or thrown out by people who had no idea what it was they had.”

“That said, there must be some that survive somewhere,” said Lowe, “it’s just that no one knows where they are.”

Heritage Auctions, headed by Steve Ivy, Jim Halperin and Greg Rohan, is the world’s third largest auction house, with annual sales more than $700 million, and 600,000+ online bidder members. For more information about Heritage Auctions, and to join and gain access to a complete record of prices realized, along with full-color, enlargeable photos of each lot, please visit HA.com.

Rare Vintage Entex Adventure Vision game console up for Auction

The Adventure Vision was a self-contained cartridge-based video game console released by Entex Industries in 1982. It was Entex’s second generation system — Their first console was the Entex Select-A-Game, which was released a year earlier in 1981. The system didn’t so very well for Entex, but is now a very collectible piece of hardware. So it is very rare to see i up at auction. This lot includes the game unit, 3 game cartridges and 2 original game boxes and is currently at $800 with 6 days left on the auction.

adventure vision

Rare Vintage Entex Adventure Vision game console up for Auction [@] eBay