A letter from a “lost” Marilyn Monroe to mentor Lee Strasberg and one from an irritated John Lennon to Linda and Paul McCartney are among hundreds of historical objects set to be auctioned on May 30.
It is part of the second in a series of auctions intended to sell about 3,000 artifacts from an anonymous collector.
The first auction was a “blockbuster sale,” with a Vincent van Gogh letter selling for $336,000 and a Thomas Jefferson letter that sold for $300,000, according a news release announcing the latest auction. The auctions are being run by Profiles in History.
The upcoming auction includes letters and manuscripts from historical figures including George Washington, Dwight D. Eisenhower and Ernest Hemingway.
One of the letters already garnering buzz is a despair-filled letter on Hotel Bel-Air stationary from Marilyn Monroe to her mentor and legendary acting coach, Lee Strasberg.
The letter began, “Dear Lee, I’m embarrassed to start this, but thank you for understanding and having changed my life. Even though you changed it I still am lost. I mean I can’t get myself together.”
“You once said the first time I heard you talk at the actors studio that ‘There is only concentration between the actor and suiside [sic],” she wrote.
“My will is weak but I can’t stand anything. I sound crazy but I think I’m going crazy,” she added. “It’s just that I get before a camera and my concentration and everything I’m trying to learn leaves me. Then I feel like I’m not existing in the human race at all.”
Another letter on the block is an angry and sarcastic letter from John Lennon to Linda and Paul McCartney.
“I was reading your letter and wondering what middle aged cranky Beatle fan wrote it. I resisted looking at the last page to find out,” Lennon wrote. He ventured a few guesses and then wrote, “What the hell – it’s Linda?”
The Lennon letterhead has a circular image of Lennon and Yoko Ono almost touching lips.
The Lennon letter is expected to fetch between $40,000 and $60,000 and the Monroe letter is expected to take in between $30,000 and $50,000.
Some of the items from the auction will be on display at Douglas Elliman’s Madison Avenue Gallery from April 8-16. The online auction will take place May 30.